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Is Rory’s Odyssey Putter Coming to Retail?

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Rory McIlroy has made more equipment changes than any other top player on the PGA Tour this season, but one club he’s stuck with has been a prototype Odyssey putter. And since the 27-year-old started using the putter early this year, it has has been both literally and figuratively a secret.

3T_Sole

As Odyssey does with several of its prototype models, the sole is engraved with question marks to highlight its prototype nature. And out of respect for McIlroy’s current status as an equipment free agent — the No. 2-ranked golfer in the world says he’s playing without an endorsement deal from any equipment manufacturer — neither Odyssey or its parent company Callaway is commenting on what clubs he’s currently using.

3T_Cavity

That brings us to this week, where we spotted new Odyssey prototype putters on the putting green of the Valero Texas Open, one of which looked almost identical to the prototype putter McIlroy is using. It’s called the 3T, and appears to be a new model in the  O Works line Odyssey unveiled earlier this year. While the putter is black, it seems to have the same shape and size as McIlroy’s prototype, and also uses Odyssey’s new Micro-Hinge insert, which the company says helps putts roll more true.

3T_Address

So is Rory’s Odyssey putter coming to retail? A Callaway representative says that the 3T, as well as the other Odyssey putters we spotted in Texas, are just prototypes for now. If it did, however, it’s safe to say that a lot of golfers would buy one.

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  1. Darryl

    Apr 20, 2017 at 7:53 am

    Things you should use Rory to advertise in golf: Drivers, Fairway Woods, Blade Irons, Tight shirts that make your odd shaped pecs look more defined.

    Things you shouldn’t use Rory to advertise in golf: Putters

    Tried the Micro-hinge at the recent Scottish golf show, didn’t really notice any difference to my old DFX 2 Ball, if I’m honest. Maybe a bit heavier, but I think that’s a general design trend.

    • Gozer

      Jun 13, 2017 at 12:30 pm

      When it comes to putters, Rory does more damage to who he dumps than who he picks up. What he chooses next may not make him a great putter (and thus is no reason for us to leap to that one yet), but he clearly thinks it is better than the old one (based on a lot of his comparison testing), which is at least somewhat damning.

  2. Golf Traditionalist

    Apr 20, 2017 at 1:42 am

    If the USGA and R&A had any principles to protect the game they would ban the dubious Odyssey Micro-hinge face insert… but we know they are in the pockets of the OEMs to keep the industry scams alive. Golf on it’s last legs.

    • Chuck

      Apr 20, 2017 at 11:31 am

      Hey, I’m okay with that. Then, 460cc driver heads, composite shafts, and a re-regulation of multilayer urethane balls.

      But seriously (well, I was being serious above); do you think that the Microhinge is a huge/unfair advantage? If so, why?

  3. Mike

    Apr 19, 2017 at 7:43 pm

    Why does the retail model have the black ferrule and Roy’s doesn’t? Is the ferrule even needed never understood why odyssey put’s them on all of these style putter.

  4. gunmetal

    Apr 19, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    I love that there is a small dent on the bottom of the shaft of the darker finish one from bending. Some of my clients cry when they see a small ding from club alterations. I tell them to think of it like a badge of honor – no “standard” for you – type a thing. It’s refreshing to see arguably the best player in our game with imperfections on his clubs!

    • NoName

      Apr 20, 2017 at 12:33 am

      The crimp on the hosel is “tour only”

  5. Brad T

    Apr 18, 2017 at 1:00 pm

    how long before rory has a spider in his bag ?

    • gg

      Apr 19, 2017 at 1:09 am

      As he s probably signing/signed a deal with callaway, it doesn t appear to be soon…

  6. Chuck

    Apr 18, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    So I wanted to tell you guys about a silly little anecdotal-and-not-quantitative “study” I did at my local Golf Galaxy the other day.

    First, I grabbed about four or five Pro V1’s on their indoor putting green, which is a carpet and which feels like about 9.5-10.0 Stimpmeter speed.

    Next, I grabbed two new putters, and one used putter. Each was 34.” The first putter was one of the new Microhinge O-works Odysseys, a 1W. (My favorite model.) Next, was my favorite current Scotty Cameron, the Newport M2. Similar head shapes. Third and last was my previous favorite Odyssey, an older model Versa BWB 1W. Again, nearly identical head shape.

    So the experiment was to hit 4-5 putts with each one, just listening to the sound of the ball on the carpet-y putting green surface. There was a scuffing sound as the ball started to roll in the first 2 feet of the putt, before it started its true roll. The sound of the ball skidding along the top of the surface instead of rolling silently.

    The putter that felt the best in my hands, was the Scotty. But it produced the noisiest roll. The putter that produced less noise in the first two feet of roll was the old Versa (which had the softest feel, I must say). The putter that produced NO sound as the ball started to roll was the O-works Microhinge. And it was freaky, what the difference was. There was nothing else like it in the shop. And it seemed as though every O-works Microhinge putter produced the same result. It also seemed like the Microhinge was effectively “faster” too. That is, putts got rolling so fast that it was easy to hit it too far.

    This was a completely subjective, unscientific, unquantifiable test. I’m not trying to kid myself or anybody else. But I worked at it for a while. And what I saw/heard was real.

  7. Joe

    Apr 18, 2017 at 10:41 am

    Not funny.

  8. Dat

    Apr 18, 2017 at 9:39 am

    Funny, it was released years ago as a PING.

  9. Bob Chipeska

    Apr 18, 2017 at 9:32 am

    You can now own one for the low, low price of $600.

  10. Tony

    Apr 18, 2017 at 8:56 am

    You can wait for this to come to retail or you can go find a Scotty Cameron Fastback. Exact same shape

    • rebfan73

      Apr 18, 2017 at 12:10 pm

      That’s exactly what I thought……

    • Chuck

      Apr 18, 2017 at 1:56 pm

      No; it’s not the shape. It’s the face insert. And no; a Scotty Cameron Fastback doesn’t have that insert. Nobody else does.

      Some people might not like the insert; some people might like it. So far, I see Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson, about ten LPGA players (using amazingly stock-looking models) all gravitating to the Microhinge.

      • Tim

        Apr 18, 2017 at 9:20 pm

        Except if you hit the hinge just right it goes off line…

        • Chuck

          Apr 19, 2017 at 2:33 pm

          See, you are arguing that the Microhinge is a bad idea. You can make that argument if you want. But no matter what, this O-Works putter is not a Cameron with a different name on it. You just sort of admitted to the point; the Microhinge makes it different. That was my point.

          I don’t know if what you are saying is true, by the way. I didn’t hit any putts that I thought jumped off the face off-line. And I have a hard time imagining lots of Tour-level players using Microhinge technology if it were actually suspect, in getting putts started on-line. Just guessing here, that Phil Mickelson knows more about putting, and has more money riding on his making putts, than I do.

    • NoName

      Apr 20, 2017 at 12:35 am

      But it doesn’t have the micro hinge technology

  11. Dj

    Apr 18, 2017 at 8:46 am

    Of course they’re going to release it. They release so many putters per year I’d be incredibly surprised if they don’t sell this at retail.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the best “5-woods under $125”

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In our forums, our members have been discussing 5-woods, with WRXer ‘gary3aces’ looking for a 5-wood for between $100 and $125. He’s looking to replace his current “M2 5 wood with something a little easier to hit”, and our members have been discussing the best options in our forum.

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

  • C6 Snowboarder: “Take a look at a used Callaway Heavenwood in the Epic Flash model = pretty Friggen sweet. It is Heaven!”
  • Golf64: “Bang for the buck, hard to beat Cobra, but find Ping one of the easiest to hit off the deck. Since you are limited in the funds dept., maybe an older model Ping 5W would do the trick?!”
  • tilasan1: “G400 7 wood turned down or just use it as is.”
  • jbandalo: “Fusion fairways. Highly underrated, cheap, easy to hit and go for miles.”
  • RyanBarathWRX: “PING G fairway would be hard to beat and easily in price range:
  • Nelson.br.1515: “Another vote for the Callaway Big Bertha Fusion. Great stick!”

Entire Thread: Best 5-woods under $125″

 

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What GolfWRXers are saying about “blending Ping i500 irons with Blueprints”

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In our forums, WRXer ‘ballywho27’ has asked for thoughts on combining his current Ping i500 irons with the brand’s Blueprint irons. ‘Ballywho27’ is considering going “i500 in 3-4 iron and blueprint 5-W” and has asked for fellow member’s thoughts on the idea – who have been sharing their takes in our forum.

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

  • jblough99: “I had a combo set for a minute, 3-5 I500 and 6-PW Blueprint. I could not get used to the transition, HUGE difference in looks at address. If I had it to do over I would just go 4-PW Blueprint and maybe a 3 I500 with graphite shaft as a driving, iron.”
  • animalgolfs: “iBlade{5i} – BP{6i-pw}. That’s my combo.”
  • Chunky: “I have i500 4-5 and Blueprints 6-PW. As mentioned above, there is a significantly different look at address. More importantly for me, the i500s are 1/2 to 1 club longer than the BPs (they fly much higher, too). Make sure you account for that added i500 distance when blending lofts or you’ll have a large gap.”
  • howeber: “I’ve done that exact set — 3 and 4 i500 and 5-PW Blueprint. It’s perfect for me since the 3 and 4 are more like a traditional 2 and 3.5. 4 is usually the longest iron I carry, so I like a little extra oomph out of it. At the end of the day though, when I finally tested them vs my MP4s, the Blueprints performed identically, while the i500 launched a little higher (same specs same shafts). Mizzys are still in the bag.”

Entire Thread: “Blending Ping i500 irons with Blueprints”

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GolfWRX Vault: Avoid these 5 club building disasters

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It’s never too late to go back to basics, especially when it comes to club building.

Even with modern new club release cycles the do’s and don’ts of building clubs haven’t changed much in the last few decades except for clubs with adapter sleeves and greater amounts of multi-materials incorporated into the design.

With that in mind its time to revisit an article from the GolfWRX Vault from June 2016.

——————

I’ve been fitting and building golf clubs for more than 15 years, and in that time I’ve seen a lot of really poor workmanship—stuff that would make most GolfWRXers cringe. But like anyone who ever did anything new, I didn’t start being naturally good at putting together clubs. It took a lot of time, ruined components, and trial and error to get where I am today.

I believe my attention to detail now stems from the fact that my dad was a machinist by trade, and anytime we ever worked on something together his attitude was to take your time and do it right the first time. My dad’s approach always had an impact on me, because I feel that if you do something right — even when it takes a bit longer — the job is not only more satisfying but also makes things work better and last longer.

The goal with this article is to help WRXers avoid the most common mistakes and assumptions in club building that lead to broken or ruined clubs, as well as real danger.

Over-prepping a graphite shaft

The shaft on the left has been prepped properly. The one of the right, which has noticeable taper, shows signs that layers of graphite have been removed.

This happens far more than it should, and can ruin an expensive new shaft purchase. To prepare a shaft properly for installation, you only need to remove enough of the paint to make sure that the epoxy adheres to the graphite. This is also true for the inside of the hosel.

Be careful to remove residual epoxy, dirt or rust (common with forged carbon steel club heads that have been sitting around for a while), or some type or solvent like the one used to put on grips, as it can cause of bond to break down very quickly. A proper reaming tool, a wire brush and some compressed air (either a small can or a large air compressor) can make cleaning simple, and prevent a golf club from falling apart.

UPDATE: Over prepping specifically applies to shafts that are designed to go into parallel heads and is especially important for 335 shafts with less material at the tip going into drivers and fairway woods. For information on how to properly taper a shaft to go into a tapered head, check out the video below:

Overheating a Shaft When Pulling it

This is what happens to a graphite shaft when overheated.

This is what happens to a graphite shaft when overheated, and the resin holding the graphite sheets together breaks down. It’s not always as noticeable, but if the shaft starts to fray it means the bonds have been compromised and it’s more likely to fail. 

Overheating a shaft when pulling it is another common mistake that can result in ruining a golf shaft. It also highly increases the chance of breakage. There are quite a few methods I’ve learned over the years to remove a shaft from a club head, from heat guns to large propane torches, but personally I find that using a small butane torch with a regulator for graphite offers the best results. It allows a club builder to easily control and focus the heat only where it’s needed. Bigger torches are fine for iron heads, as long as you don’t damage any plastic badges in the cavity or materials in slots around the head.

One of the best advances in club technology has been the invention and mass adoption of adjustable hosels. They not only help golfers adjust the loft, lie and face angle of club heads, but have also greatly decreased the need to pull shafts. So as long as a golfer is staying with the same metal wood manufacturer, they can usually test several different clubs heads with the same shaft, or vice versa — several different shafts with the same clubhead.

That being said, one of the most important tools that any hobbyist club builder should have or have access to is a high-quality shaft puller. It’s a necessary tool for anyone who wants to do repairs and helps prevent damage to a shaft while pulling it. The more linear pressure that can be applied to the clubhead, and the less heat used to break down the epoxy, the better. It makes sure both the shaft and the head are reusable in the future. For steel shafts, you can use a bit more heat, and twisting isn’t a problem. Again, with increased heat, be careful not to damage any of the badging, or permanently discolor an iron head.

Botching a Grip Installation

Using calipers and two-sided tape, you can replicate the taper of shafts to makes every grip feel exactly the same size in your set.

Using calipers and two-sided tape, you can replicate the taper of shafts to makes every grip feel exactly the same size in your set.

This one seems simple, but when really getting down to professional level detail, it is quite important. We ALL have a preference and different opinion of what feels good in a golf grip, as well as different sensitivities. For example, we all have the ability to figure out what apple is bigger, even if blindfolded because over time we all develop brain function to understand shapes and sizes. This also applies to grips. If you use the same grips on your 13 clubs, you could potentially have 4-5 different final sizes depending on how many different types of shafts you use, because many shafts have different butt diameters.

Some shafts have larger butt diameters, while others taper faster than others. That’s why it’s very important to own a quality set of vernier calipers, and know how to properly use them. It’s also the same for putters, since many putter shafts are smaller in diameter. I have lost count of how many times I’ve had people bring me, putters, where the bottom half of the grip is twisting and turning because the installer never paid attention to the interior diameter of the grip, the exterior diameter of the shaft, and how it changed from top to bottom.

Using epoxy that’s doomed to fail

An example of epoxy that although not completely set, is no longer safe for assembling clubs.

An example of epoxy that although not completely set, is no longer safe for assembling clubs.

I’m a bit of a physics nerd and garage engineer, so this is one of those topics that goes beyond just the physical aspects of club building and into the realm of chemistry.

Here comes my nerd-out moment: In the simplest of explanations for a 0.335-inch driver hosel with an insertion depth of 1.25 inches, the amount of calculated surface area the epoxy can bond between the shaft and the head using the internal dimensions of the head is 1.49 square inches. That’s not a whole lot of area when you consider the centrifugal force being applied to a driver head traveling at 100 mph, and then the forces of torque that also come into play when a shot is struck.

In a PERFECT world, almost zero torque is applied to a shaft when a shot is hit on the center of gravity (CG) of the club head, perfectly aligned with the center mass of the ball, while traveling in the intended direction. This is vectors 101 of physics. Unfortunately, almost every single shot is NOT hit like that, and this is where the epoxy bond is put under the most amount of stress. Lap shear strength of epoxy goes beyond me, but it proves that building a golf club is not just cut and glue after all.

Note: For those of you curious, the most popular epoxies are rated for 4500 psi. 

As far are actually working with epoxy, first things first. Always check to see if the epoxy has a best-before date (yep, just like milk). Also, never store epoxy in direct sunlight. If you are using epoxy from a tube in a dispensing gun, you are using what is an almost foolproof method. Plunge out the necessary amount, mix for about a minute (mix! don’t whip), and remember, the less air that gets into the epoxy the better. If air gets in and the epoxy cures with bubbles in it, then you end up with a club that will often “creak.”

For those using two parts in larger bottles, the best way to ensure proper ratios is to pay attention to the weight ratio rather than volume. This isn’t arts and crafts; it’s chemistry, so by using the weight to calculate the ratio you will get the right amount of each part every time, and help decrease the risk of failure down the road. If you have mixed a larger batch and plan on building quite a few clubs at a time, you really have to pay attention to the consistency and viscosity as time goes on. You don’t want to glue a club head with epoxy that has started to set.

Turning an Extension into a Shank

The difference between a good shaft extension (bottom) and a bad one.

The difference between a good shaft extension (bottom) and a bad one.

This is one of those subjects I don’t even like to talk about. I very much dislike using extensions when building clubs, especially clubs with graphite shafts. Going back to my “do-it-right-the-first-time” mentality, extensions are a Band-Aid fix to a problem that requires surgery. They also counter-balance the club, and by their very nature create a weak point because of the small wall thickness at the butt end of a shaft. The only clubs I don’t mind extending on a regular basis are putters since they are never put under the same level of stress as a club being swung at full speed. I also never extend a club more than 1 inch, because I have been witness to horror stories of clubs that have been overextended that not only break but rip through the grip and cut people’s hands very badly.

If you are going to extend a club, it’s important to make sure the fit is very snug and doesn’t cause the extension to lean in any direction. It’s also best to have the epoxied extension cure with the club on its side to avoid an excess epoxy from running down the shaft and breaking off and causing a rattle.

 

 

 

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