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PING Nome Putter Review

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by getmeouttajersey

The PING Nome was released in early April after it exploded onto the scene when Hunter Mahan dismantled the field at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. It then gained even more praise a few weeks later when he putted his way to an impressive victory at the Shell Houston Open. Needless to say, the hype and demand have been through the roof with the success the Nome has seen in the past couple of months, so let’s take a look at this new release from PING.

Click here to see more pics and read the discussion in the forums

Tungsten Weighted Sole – a lightweight frame made of high-grade aluminum features tungsten sole weighting that optimizes the CG (Center of Gravity) and creates a high MOI (Moment of Inertia).
Alignment Bar, Sightline – A black alignment bar with white contrasting sight line make it easy to aim and align this mallet-style, precision milled head to improve accuracy.
Fit For Stroke – The Nome 355 Putter is available in 3 different shaft bends to fit YOUR putting stroke, whether it’s Straight, Slight Arc, or Strong Arc.

PROS
Looks -Ping really made an effort to ensure that this putter is easy on the eyes. Its smoother lines are a vast improvementover the Sydney (released in 2011) and the Alignment Bar is absolutely perfect without being overbearing. Feel – PING also nailed it in the feel department. The C805-aluminum design feels soft yetresponsive, everything we’re looking for in a putter. For those that prefer a non-insert designlike me, this could be an option for you… Fitting – Having the option to choose from 3 shaft bend designs, best fit for your stroke is invaluable, something no other company can offer. Typically, all face-balanced putters are designed to promote a SBST (Straight Back, Straight Through) putting stroke, but PING has changed all that, giving the mallet option to players with varying stroke types…

CONS
Weighting – For me, a face-balanced mallet needs to have some “heft” to it. I would attribute the lighter feel to the Midsize WINN AVS grip (a very, very nicegrip). Despite how great the grip felt, I was surprised to notice that the heavy grip took away from the heavier feel of the putter head. Obviously, this is something that can be easily remedied with a lighter-weight grip of your choice to give the club head a little more of a heavy feel.

REVIEW
For a player that is interested and/or tends to gravitate towards a face-balanced putter, I really think that you should give the PING Nome a long, hard look. When I’m looking for a Mallet-design, I’m looking for something that can give me the forgiveness and confidence I need on putts inside of 10 feet. In my testing, if I mishit a putt, I found that I was still able to consistently start the putt on my intended line, which is a huge benefit. In terms of the alignment aid, I couldn’t ask for a better design. As you can see in the pictures, the long, white sightline makes lining up short putts a breeze. In the 4 rounds I played with the Nome, I didn’t miss those short, pressure-filled putts. That, in combination with the exceptional balance and high MOI catapulted this putter to the top of my wish list.

While I don’t always use a mallet, when the pressure is on,nothing is more forgiving than a face-balanced, high MOI mallet. I’ll definitely be giving the Nome a chance to stay in my bag…


Click here to see more pics and read the discussion in the forums


LOOKS
We’ve all seen the photos and by now, I’m sure many of you have seen it in person. In my opinion, if you’re a “mallet guy”, it is one great looking putter. With all the wacky-looking mallets on the market today, it was nice to see a simple but functional design with the Nome. The biggest hit for me, other than the incredible balance, is the alignment bar. As someone who has always utilized a line on my ball when putting, PING has hit a home run. When I’m looking for a putter, I’m always looking for something that will give me confidence in my intended line and the Nome delivers. The white line contrasts perfectly off of the black bar and creates an impressive blend of good lucks and functionality. For those that liked the performance of the PING Sydney last year, you’ll be even more impressed with the Nome. I was impressed with the Sydney in 2011, but I couldn’t bring myself to game it based on the looks. With the Nome, you get the same performance packed in a great looking and improved design.


PERFORMANCE
Like I said earlier, if you’re in the market for a mallet-style putter, you’re usually looking for two things, face-balanced and high MOI. With this putter, you’re getting the total package. As part of my initial testing, I took the Nome out to my club’s practice green and dropped 10 balls at about 4 feet. For me, if I can get these in the hole, the putter has passed the first test. As we all know, those pesky 4 footers in a tournament, your club championship, or even your Saturday skins game are what can make or break your round. So, for me, if I can get comfortable sinking the short ones, I know I’m on the right track. The next order of business is to stretch out the length to the 25-30 foot range to see how well I can control speed and get putts on-line when I’m not as close to the hole as I’d like. This portion of the review is typically where an insert putter (for me) loses my confidence. With the Nome however, the feel off the putter face was consistent and I was regularly hitting my desired line. After getting a feel for the speed, I was definitely intrigued by the putter.

**One note I wanted to mention. Since I happen to fit into the “Straight” stroke category, PING designed this model with a fairly noticeable amount of ‘forward press’. For example, when I sole the putter, the grip is much, much farther in front of my hands than I would typically be comfortable with. Initially, this took a few hours to get used to, but once I was comfortable, I started to really benefit from the concept of ensuring that your hands remain in front of the putter head as you make your stroke. I did a little research and visited my local retailer and noticed that the “Slight Arc” and “Strong Arc” did not feature this same hand positioning as the “Straight” model, so that maybe something to pay attention to when you’re looking into the Nome. **

THE BOTTOM LINE
The PING Nome will be in my bag (if they let me!) I tend to play on fast, undulating greens in the Spring, Summer, and early Fall. With the unmatched balance and exceptional alignment aid built into the Nome, I haven’t found a putter design that has given me a more confidence on the putts that matter. If you’re a mallet fan and even if you aren’t, please take the time to demo this putter, you may be surprised at how well this putter performs.

For years, I was putting with toe-weighted blades (nothing wrong with that), but only after I spent a few bucks on the iPING cradle did I realize that I was better off with a face-balanced mallet design. I think that it’s critical to your success on the greens to take the time to either get fit at your local retailer or invest in the iPING App and Cradle to get a better idea of where your putting stroke stands. After analyzing your stroke and pin-pointing your weaknesses, give the PING Nome a shot. I think you’ll be extremely impressed with the forgiveness, alignment aid, and feel. In my opinion, it’s the best all-around mallet putter released in 2012 and trust me, I’ve tried them all…


Click here to see more pics and read the discussion in the forums

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GolfWRX is the world's largest and best online golf community. Expert editorial reviews, breaking golf tour and industry news, what to play, how to play and where to play. GolfWRX surrounds consumers throughout the buying, learning and enrichment process from original photographic and video content, to peer to peer advice and camaraderie, to technical how-tos, and more. As the largest online golf community we continue to protect the purity of our members opinions and the platform to voice them. We want to protect the interests of golfers by providing an unbiased platform to feel proud to contribute to for years to come. You can follow GolfWRX on Twitter @GolfWRX and on Facebook.

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1 Comment

  1. garywrice

    Jun 19, 2012 at 6:03 pm

    Just a note of support for the review of the Ping Nome. The author’s comment struck home because I have been a blade user for the past 50 years of golf and have had little to do with the mallet until this Nome came along. I picked it up at my local golf shop about 6 weeks ago and it has not left my bag since.
    I have had much more confidence in the 5 to 10 footers since I started using this putter.
    Also, I have an arc to my stroke, so I use the slight arc model Nome. Be sure to get your stroke analyzed before getting this putter…..a little pricey but it has been worth it for me.

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Equipment

WRX Spotlight Review: TaylorMade M5 fairway Rocket 3

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Product: TaylorMade M5 fairway Rocket 3

Pitch: The TaylorMade M5 fairway Rocket 3 is a stronger-lofted version of the standard TaylorMade M5 3-wood. The Rocket is 14 degrees. The standard M5 is 15.

Our take on the TaylorMade M5 Rocket 3

“WOW, you really hit that 3-wood like a rocket!”

” Not like a rocket… an actual Rocket!”

The beloved 3-wood. A favorite club of both average golfers and pros alike, a club that many will hold onto well after what some might consider their “best before” date. But with new options and improved technology, these old faithfuls are getting the boot quicker for a lot of reasons including the ability to better dial in a fit and help minimizing misses.

Since making a club faster off the middle is becoming more and more difficult thanks to the limits set forth but the USGA, OEMs are changing the way we think about clubs and putting a greater focus on decreasing dispersion and optimizing misses. TaylorMade is doing this with TwistFace, which was originally introduced in drivers a generation ago, and has now been included in the M5 and M6 fairway woods.

I got to spend some time with the knowledgeable crew at TaylorMade Canada in their new indoor facility just north of Toronto (lets call it Kingdom North) In that time, we went through a driver fitting, and then to the new M5 fairway woods to try and replace one of my oldest faithfuls: a 14-degree SLDR Tour Spoon. To say I have a unique ability to elevate a fairway wood is something that even my fitter was a little surprised by. My numbers with my cranked down to 12 degree (measured) fairway off the deck were good but could be improved. I can hit it both ways (as much as a 6-handicap can actually claim that) but my trusted go-to shot is a slight fade with some heel bias contact because of my swing. I am willing to sacrifice some distance but usually hit it where I want.

What I saw at the end of the fitting was a club that produced longer shots along with a tighter dispersion without having to make or to try and make any changes to my swing. The final fit was a 14-degree “Rocket” M5 fairway set to 12 degrees. It beat out my SLDR by a total of nine yards, which is an increase of just over a total of three percent, including an additional six yards of carry.

To say I was honestly surprised would be an understatement. The SLDR TS is a club that the first time I hit it I went WHOA! Low spin, workable, looks exactly how I want that club to look (small and compact). You can see from the numbers below when it works it works.

Why does TwistFace work?

Let’s explain and get a little deep in the technology weeds for a second. Bulge and roll is not a new concept. In fact, it would be a lie to claim that all OEMs haven’t done something similar to this is the past or played with these two variables to help golfers hit better shots. Fact: Every OEM optimizes the bulge and roll on their clubs to increase speed and maximize performance. Tom Wishon actually had a line of woods at one point that went the other way had VERY limited roll from the top tine to the sole. With this design, more loft on the bottom of the head helped players who miss low or need help elevating the ball off the deck increase launch and spin. It worked. Cobra also has what it calls E9 technology to tweak bulge and roll to help maximize the speed and forgiveness of their woods. It also works.

What makes TaylorMade’s TwistFace different is that it is the most aggressive iteration of this bulge and roll tweaking yet, and by introducing it into the fairway woods and hybrids, it’s proving to be a winner — even for this now-proven wrong skeptic.

At the end of the day, the M5 Ti “Rocket” was a measurable improvement over my previous 3-wood. Now it would be disingenuous to say “if you aren’t using TwistFace in your fairway woods you’re not maximized,” but if you are someone that struggles with fairway wood dispersion and looking to find some extra distance for taking on par-5s, taking a look at the new M5 and M6 fairway woods as part of your next fitting should be very high on your list.

 

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Equipment

Forum Thread of the Day: “Low handicapper switching to game improvement irons”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from jasonTel3 – a low handicap player who plays blades but who has had his head turned by game improvement irons. According to jasonTel3, every ball was hit straight when testing out a set of Ping G400’s at a simulator, and he’s been asking fellow members for advice on whether he should make the move to GI’s.

Here are a few posts from the thread discussing jasonTel3’s conundrum, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • balls_deep: “My first thought is to say don’t do it.. but then if you’ve hit them, liked them, and the numbers were right, it could be a good option. A friend I play with uses G400 and they have too much offset for my liking. I also don’t like that you can see the cavity on the 4 and 5 iron. Top line is actually very nice for a SGI iron. I just read the Ping Blueprint article on Golf Digest where they were talking about how some players hit small heads better. I definitely fall into that category. That said, I just ordered a set of i210 to try as I had really good luck with the i200 and should never have sold them. Have you tried the newer I series? IMO it’s GI help in a players look with an acceptable sole width. Long story short though – if you felt comfortable and the fit was right, why not try them? If you don’t work the ball a ton, I don’t see any issue with it. High and straight is a good way to go!”
  • hammergolf: “I’ve been playing Ping G25’s for 6 years. Still can’t find anything I like better. I can hit any shot I need to whether it’s my stock draw, fade, high, or low. And when I hit it a little thin, or on the toe, it still lands on the green. My thought is why play golf with a club that will punish you for mishit when you can play one that will help you.”
  • azone: “Everyone has an opinion, and here is mine. If you are/have been a good ball striker with a sound mental game, your mind will keep writing checks your body may not be able to cash as you get older or don’t practice enough. Those “ugly” forgiving irons look beautiful when a miss ends up on the green, and you are putting– not in rough or deep in a short side bunker. Those irons won’t be AS ACCURATE as, say, a blade, BUT if you aren’t as dependable as in the past, your results will be better. I used to keep two sets of blueprinted irons; blades for practice and CB for play. I play with guys that have cashed checks playing…and they don’t care how ugly the iron is.”
  • Jut: “As a decent player (and ball striker) and a sweeper/picker (I could hit off of a green and not take any landscape with me), I’ve found much success with the F9s (which, with the wide sole, are very similar to the G410 irons). In the past 4 years I’ve gone from Mizuno MP-68 to Callaway Apex CF16 to Ping i500 (a brief and bad experience) to the Cobra F9’s. For what it’s worth, the Cobras have been the best of the bunch by far.”

Entire Thread: “Low handicap going to game improvement irons”

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WRX Spotlight: Stitch headcovers

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Product: Stitch headcovers

Pitch: From Stitch: “Your game should match your style. At Stitch, we aim to merchandise our line of products so you can easily put together items that not only match your bag and what is it in it, but also match your style and personality. We want to make it easy for you to have a unique and color-coordinated golf bag. We have designed unique products that have defined color schemes so that choosing which items to put in your bag becomes easier. We aim to provide you with various looks, mixing and matching our head covers to give you confidence that the purchase you make for your bag will take you to the course in style. Let us help you dress your game.”

Our Take On Stitch Headcovers

Stitch is a relatively new company – founded in 2012. The company initially only created premium headcovers but has grown into so much more, with all sorts of golfing accessories now on offer on their site StitchGolf.com. Their bags, in particular, are now some of the most popular amongst golfers, with the quality and uniqueness provided leading multiple Tour players to sport them in tournament play.

That sign of quality in the bags bodes well for what the company was founded on – their headcovers. Stitch provides both leather and knit headcovers in a variety of designs that do as good a job as any in covering the needs of all golfers.

Stitch describes the companies Monte Carlo headcover as being their “classic, timeless design”, and for those looking for that vintage style to add to their set up then they can’t go wrong with this headcover. A mainstay in the likes of multiple tour winner Paul Casey’s bag, the Monte Carlo headcover, as with all of the companies leather covers, is hand-crafted from 100% leather and is both water and stain resistant. The cover comes in four color codes: Black, White, Navy and Red, and at $68 is the most affordable of all their leather headcovers.

Other options in the leather department range from their intricately designed Camo cover which comes in a multiple color design, as well as Stitch’s tribute to “The King”, through their Arnold Palmer headcover.

The AP cover comes in a minimalist black with white stripes for a classic feel, but it also comes in a white color code decorated with red, white and yellow stripes which, for myself at least, looks even more alluring. Part of an exclusive collection, the only issue with the AP cover is that only those located in the U.S. are currently eligible to get their hands on one. But for those in the states, the company is now offering a set of three AP leather covers for $128 instead of $298 should you use the code APLEATHERS on their site.

From their Tour Racer, USA, Shamrock and Bonesman editions, Stitch provides a great choice when it comes to their leather covers, and as previously mentioned, all are hand-crafted from 100% leather, water and stain resistant and will assure an excellent fit on your clubs.

Stitch also provides knit headcovers which contain not only excellent designs but also the same quality which has gone into their leather covers. All of the companies knit covers are made from Techno Wool, which is 100% acrylic and designed in order for your clubs to stay entirely dry. Another feature of the knit covers from Stitch is their smart fit design which ensures all of the covers retain their shape over a long period, as well as providing for a cover that will reliably stay on your club.

The knit covers from Stitch cost $68 ($72 for the limited AP cover), and there are currently seven different designs available to choose from over at StitchGolf.com. The leather covers are, unsurprisingly, a little pricier, but still very affordable, ranging from $68-$98. The covers deliver in both style and performance, and for a relatively new company, it speaks volumes that the likes of Jim Furyk, Paul Casey, Bryson DeChambeau and many more tour pros are now sporting the company’s creations.

 

 

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