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Counterbalancing can take many forms, from higher balance point shafts, to heavier grips. This video explains how this relates to club building, along with the benefits of counterbalancing from both a player and design perspective.

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Ryan Barath is a club fitter and master club builder who has more than 15 years experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour professionals. He studied business and marketing at the Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf located in Toronto. He now works independently from his home shop in Hamilton and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers, including True Temper. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, from course architecture to physics, and share his passion for club building, and wedge grinding.

58 Comments

58 Comments

  1. steve

    Nov 20, 2018 at 6:48 pm

    This is fuuuun …. 😀

  2. Ed

    Nov 20, 2018 at 12:28 pm

    I always understood that increasing the MOI of the clubhead effectively increased its resistance to twisting on off-center ball contact. It that is true, when you counterbalance a golf club by adding a weight to the butt end of the grip should increase the MOI of the club. If that is true wouldn’t it be more stable during the swing? Thanks

    • steve

      Nov 20, 2018 at 6:26 pm

      Nope… because you must link MOI to axis/axes of rotation. The clubhead and putter has an axis related to impact ‘sweet spot’… and the MOI reacts to heel or toe hits.
      Counterbalancing with backweighting affects the MOI axis for the entire club. The club feels more ‘stable’ in the swing but upon ‘impact’ it is sub-optimal for exchange of energy.

  3. Bruce

    Nov 20, 2018 at 9:36 am

    I hold graduate degrees in engineering and understand the physics of objects – like golf clubs – in motion.
    Swingweight is a marketing tool developed long ago. It measures how a club “feels” when it is NOT in motion, but has nothing to say about moving the club – hitting a ball.
    Hitting a ball is a circular or curved motion motion – as such physics teaches the important parameter is moment of inertia OF THE ENTIRE CLUB – not just club head like driver MOI.
    Golf club moment of inertia can be measured quite simply with a pendulum device and matching this across a set produces uniform feel. Single length clubs accomplish this match by design and work well – think Bryson who also understands physics.

    • steve

      Nov 20, 2018 at 6:38 pm

      dy/dx Bruce. Swingweight is NOT SwingINGweight, it’s the First/Polar MOI… and when you swing the club you experience the Second/Mass MOI. What is being discussed here is the “great feeeel” a gearhead feels when he backweights a club and if it feeels good it must be goood for distance and control… regardless of the physics… lol

    • steve

      Nov 20, 2018 at 6:47 pm

      dy/dx, Bruce …. 😉

  4. Arse

    Nov 20, 2018 at 2:41 am

    Counter-balancing is the greatest thing since sliced bread.
    It works, because unlike steve, none of us would put a half pound of anything onto a swinging golf club, because we are not stupid. There is a limit to everything, just like a very limited knowledge steve has about decency and ethics and life in general as he is disconnected from it.
    Counter-balance works because it helps to lever the movement of your hands, and this leverage action is the key. It also helps to make the heavier head weight not feel as heavy. It also helps to square up the face with the mechanical lever action, and there is nothing wrong with adding a mechanical component to the swing to help you square it up.
    I am putting it in layman’s terms because that’s all steve understands. He has not given us one single mechanism of action of a lever in a golf swing as it pertains to the MOI of the golf club head in balance with the MOI with the golfer’s swing itself, because he doesn’t understand what MOI is in golf.
    drum roll please….. thank you

    • steve

      Nov 20, 2018 at 6:42 pm

      Right on A r s e… and don’t forget the great results you get when you counterbalance your pot belly with your big a r s e when swinging the insignificant club MOI/leverage/torque/whatever… LOL

      • Arse

        Nov 21, 2018 at 9:47 am

        As everybody was saying, you are just a child. Where is your mother.

        • steve

          Nov 21, 2018 at 2:16 pm

          … and you A r s e know nothing about “leverage” and “MOI” within the golf swing because your above comments reveal your abject ignorance about dynamics and the laws of motion. You are beyond ignorant now that you are depending on consensus opinion from the rest of the dummies you descend into stupidity. Pfffttt….

  5. Dan Cons

    Nov 19, 2018 at 6:42 pm

    I’ve recently added weight to the butt of the putter and I’ve been putting better. Jack Nicholas also payed grips with weights in the butt end. Sergio does it also but. Think he uses setting to limit vibration in the shaft.

  6. Dan C

    Nov 19, 2018 at 6:41 pm

    I’ve recently added weight to the butt of the putter and I’ve been putting better. Jack Nicholas also payed grips with weights in the butt end. Sergio does it also but. Think he uses setting to limit vibration in the shaft.

  7. Z

    Nov 19, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    Show me how to counterbalance my driver. What swinger characteristics would most benefit counterbalancing

    • steve

      Nov 19, 2018 at 10:00 pm

      Go to the hardware store and buy a short steel bolt which will slip into the butt end of your driver shaft. Lightly epoxy it in place. Slip the grip over the shaft and swing away… you will be disappointed. If it works then you have a “lazy release” and the counterweight is helping you flip the handle through impact. Most duffers have a lazy release and can’t square up the clubface at impact. Pa thetic…

  8. joro

    Nov 19, 2018 at 12:00 pm

    I have a set of Wilson C00 Irons that I put a set of 165gr. grips on. They feel great, a little light in the head feel but they feel good. The benefits are that they are much straighter and longer than before and easy to swing. I have also done the same with a 5 wood and pow. I have always been a head feel guy but as I am much older now it is all about picking up speed, and this really helps.

    • steve

      Nov 19, 2018 at 10:03 pm

      The CW helps your ‘older’ swing because you have developed a “lazy release” and your clubhead wobbles approaching impact. The CW helps you flip the handle at your slower swing speed. What you ‘feel’ is the CW flipping your weak hands.

      • Arse

        Nov 21, 2018 at 9:48 am

        Yeah, that’s why a majority of the long drivers use counter balance. You’re so dumb

        • steve

          Nov 21, 2018 at 2:20 pm

          Are you certain about that… and if so please provide proof of your asinine a s s ertion…. we’re waiting … go ahead… and don’t fall into your own hole… (_º_)

  9. HDTVMAN

    Nov 19, 2018 at 11:39 am

    Very good explanation. I sell Ping products and had no idea that the Alta shaft was counterbalanced. It’s a good selling point.

    • steve

      Nov 19, 2018 at 10:08 pm

      It is if your customer has a slow swing speed less than 85 mph.

  10. Dtrain

    Nov 19, 2018 at 11:23 am

    I can’t for the life of me understand why you would want this in a putter. I went through a putter fitting and found I totally lost the feel of the clubhead. Then again I had these new fat grips as well, I like the more traditional size. I want to feel the putter swing. YMMV.

    • Jay Anderson

      Nov 19, 2018 at 6:10 pm

      I use a Boccieri heavy putter because, being self-employed, my nerves are frazzled. For me it feels as though the grip the shaft ,and the putter head are all one-piece. It is a revelation when I first tried it.

    • steve

      Nov 19, 2018 at 10:06 pm

      Your “feel” is correct… because the shift of weight towards the butt end deadens impact and feel of clubhead. It’s a scientific fact.

  11. Matt

    Nov 18, 2018 at 12:54 am

    In General which types of swingers benefit, or don’t, from counterbalancing?

    • steve

      Nov 18, 2018 at 2:08 am

      In General… counterbalancing is a fraud because it dulls the sweetspot on the putter or club face. It makes swinging the club feel easier but that is not the solution to a slow speed swing. Counterbalancing a putter is totally wrong and counterproductive to energy transfer from putter head to ball.

      • HS

        Nov 18, 2018 at 10:13 am

        again, this steve dude know nothing, because he’s a moron

        • steve

          Nov 18, 2018 at 2:58 pm

          I’ll put my engineering degree up against your community college diploma in sport journalism any day… doofus

          • Big Tata

            Nov 19, 2018 at 2:57 am

            What a loser

          • Ee

            Nov 19, 2018 at 3:01 am

            Explain to us what dulling the sweetspot on the putter face means in scientific terms. How big or small a sweetspot does it have to be to feel any dullness at all. What kind of sweet spot does it have to be. What sort of materials would make for not so much dulling or not. Explain to us what the physics involved are in how the energy is transferred to the clubhead from the handle, because no swinging is actually required in a putter, when the whole putter can be moved sideways without any sort of pendulum stroke at all, if one so desired.
            We’re waiting, you idiot

            • steve

              Nov 19, 2018 at 1:50 pm

              The “sweet spot” on the putter face is NOT the Center of Percussion… which is the point on the entire putter, head, shaft and grip, where you achieve maximum transfer of energy. The CofP is somewhere above the putter head. The “sweet spot” on the putter head is just longitudinal gravitational axis you get when you spin the hanging putter from the butt end. This is where the overall putter m a s s is equal on both sides of the axis. The “sweet spot” is just a line on the putter face and cannot be expanded with heel-toe weighting. Adding more weight to the butt end raises the CofP and makes the energy transfer less efficient and dulls the feel of impact. Hope that help you, you idiot.

              • Ee

                Nov 19, 2018 at 2:00 pm

                No, it doesn’t, because you don’t know anything. Well done for pulling that info from Wiki like everybody else, though, at least you can read.
                Center of percussion doesn’t work in a golf club, because we have a lie angle that’s offset. If you want to putt vertical, go ahead, you might find that percussive sweet spot better, but we have to putt on a 20 degree lie, so your theory goes bye bye, numbnuts, unlike a bat, which is in a straight line, as is a tennis racket.
                Counter-balance works because we use the sloped lie angle to sweep the head of the club or putter across and enables some to create a better handle pivot position in motion off the plane axis.

                • steve

                  Nov 19, 2018 at 9:40 pm

                  I’m not going to argue first year Engineering Dynamics with somebody who is ignorant like you. If you want to destroy yourself, add 1/2 pound of steel to the butt end of your putter as a counterweight and you will most certainly feel dull ineffective impact. CofP is solely a function of distribution of m a s s for a club, bat or racket regardless of it’s orientation. BTW, you can calculate the theoretical CofP for an eccentric object… as you can for CofM.

    • Timothy

      Nov 19, 2018 at 12:37 pm

      I’m a senior golfer with a pretty slow swing speed. If’ve found that my Ping hybrids, which have an Alta counterbalanced shaft, have a higher ball flight and great feel. You can actually feel the kick of the shaft in your downswing. From my point of view they’re beneficial for a slow swinger like myself.

      • steve

        Nov 19, 2018 at 1:56 pm

        Your problem is that you are getting weak and can’t develop enough hand speed to crisply release the club through impact. Counterweighting will help you flip the hybrid club faster as you approach impact. The higher ball flight and greater distance is because you are squaring the clubface with the help of the counterweight. If you had an efficient swing without the counterweight you would hit it even farther.

      • steve

        Nov 19, 2018 at 9:42 pm

        Your problem is you are age weakening and can’t develop enough hand speed to crisply release the club through impact. Counterweighting will help you flip the hybrid club faster as you approach impact. The higher ball flight and greater distance is because you are squaring the clubface with the help of the counterweight. If you had an efficient swing without the counterweight you would hit it even farther.

      • steve

        Nov 19, 2018 at 9:47 pm

        Your problem is you don’t develop enough hand speed to crisply release the club through impact. Counterweighting will help you flip the hybrid club faster through impact. The higher flight and greater distance is because you are squaring the clubface with the help of the counterweight. If you had an efficient swing without the counterweight you would hit it even farther.

      • steve

        Nov 19, 2018 at 9:52 pm

        Your problem is you can’t develop enough hand speed to crisply release the club through impact. Counterweighting will help you flip the hybrid club faster as you approach impact. The higher ball flight and greater distance is because you are squaring the clubface with the help of the counterweight. If you had an efficient swing without the counterweight you would hit it even far ther.

        • Arse

          Nov 21, 2018 at 9:50 am

          That’s weird, how does a fulcrum work in a pivot motion? What do you think the counterbalance does to the handle end? It flips the club faster, therefore you gain more clubhead speed because it acts as a better pendulum. Duh

          • steve

            Nov 21, 2018 at 2:31 pm

            A fulcrum is the support about which a lever pivots. In a free body, such as a club in a golfswing, the point around which rotation occurs is not a fulcrum, it’s an axis. At the top of swing reversal the left or rear hand is a fulcrum. When the club is rotating in the downswing it is kinetic energy flow that is causing rotation, not a hand force couple… unless you believe you should be torquing the club handle through impact…

  12. sam navarro

    Nov 17, 2018 at 7:11 pm

    how will installing jumbo max grips effect swingweight and balance

    • steve

      Nov 17, 2018 at 9:16 pm

      Heavier jumbo grips will move the club balance point towards the butt end.
      Swingweight is the static First MOI as in a lever calculation M x radius.
      MOI matching is the dynamic Second MOI and is calculated by M x radius^squared.
      …. where M = m a s s … which is blocked in the swearbot filter…!!!

      • geohogan

        Nov 17, 2018 at 11:18 pm

        5 grams of weight added to the butt end of the golf club will lower SW by about one SW.

        Add 50 grams, and SW can change from D2 to C2.

        Replace a 50 gram putter grip with Jumbo Max 122 grams and SW will change by about 14 points.

        • geohogan

          Nov 17, 2018 at 11:26 pm

          For every 5 grams added to the butt end (moves Center of gravity of the entire club toward the butt), 2 grams of weight can be added to the clubhead to offset the counterbalancing and SW will be the same as before counter balancing and Force applied to the ball will be increased, assuming acceleration remains the same as previous.

          Since we feel more heft in the hands, our subconscious will tend to produce more effort, that may also increase acceleration.

          (just as we swing with much more acceleration when we grip the club at the clubhead rather than the butt end of the club)

        • geohogan

          Nov 18, 2018 at 12:07 am

          Force=ma

          To offset counterbalance of butt end. eg 10 grams
          4 grams can be added to the clubhead. That will put SW back where it was before counterbalancing + add to the Force applied to the ball, assuming acceleration is the same.

          Adding weight to the butt end also fools the subconscious to use more effort, just as we exert more effort to pick up an object we know is heavy compared to an object that is known to be light in weight.

        • steve

          Nov 18, 2018 at 2:12 am

          1 ounce = 28.4 grams.
          Adding 50 or more grams to the butt end of a club or putter is scientifically insane.. 😮

      • Meme

        Nov 18, 2018 at 10:15 am

        you only wish you could counterbalance your boyfriend’s pole steve

    • gps

      Nov 17, 2018 at 11:09 pm

      5 grams of weight added at the butt end will change SW by about one swing weight.

      A std grip has been 50 grams. Force=ma ie mass x acceleration. By counterbalancing a driver at a given SW, we can then add weight to the clubhead to bring SW back to normal, increasing Force
      applied to the ball with the same clubhead speed before counter balancing.

      Counter balancing fools our subconscious to exert more effort due to more heft felt in the hands, just as we apply more effort to lift an object that we know weighs more than a lighter object.

      Change 50 gram putter grip on putter with D1 swing weight; will become about C5 swing weight with a 122 gram grip.

    • gps

      Nov 17, 2018 at 11:14 pm

      5 grams added to the butt end will change the SW by about 1 SW point

      Force=ma
      ie force applied to the ball is equally dependent upon mass of the clubhead and acceleration.

      If shaft is counter balanced, then we can add weight to the clubhead to increase force applied to the ball, without changing the swing weight feel of the club.

  13. steve

    Nov 17, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    Scientifically speaking…. counterbalancing is adding weight to the handle butt end… NOT just adding weight in the top 14 inches unless the shaft is top heavy.
    Raising the center of m a s s of the entire club will also raise the center of percussion and dull the clubface sweet spot. Not good.

    • steve

      Nov 17, 2018 at 6:14 pm

      Why is the forum swearbot filter so sensitive that it won’t post the word “m a s s”…. sheeesh

      • aga

        Nov 18, 2018 at 6:56 pm

        …. it also bans any word that contains the syllable “a s s”… like cla a a ify… a s s ume… ma s s ive… and on and on … it’s a joke !!!!

        • steve

          Nov 19, 2018 at 9:55 pm

          … also “f a r t her” …. stooopid swearbot filter gone ‘pc’…!

  14. steve

    Nov 17, 2018 at 6:12 pm

    Scientifically speaking…. counterbalancing is adding weight to the handle butt end… NOT adding weight in the top 14 inches unless the shaft is top heavy.
    Raising the center of mass of the entire club will also raise the center of percussion and dull the clubface sweet spot. Not good.

  15. JP

    Nov 17, 2018 at 9:21 am

    I don’t have audio here. Can’t these be transcribed?

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Equipment

Brian Harman, Patton Kizzire Winning WITBs: 2018 QBE Shootout

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Brian Harman

Driver: Titleist 917D2 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Accra Concept Series X-flex

3-wood: Titleist TS2 (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution II 661 S-flex

5-wood: Titliest 917F2 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution II 757 S-flex

Hybrid: Titleist 818 H1 (21 degrees)
Shaft: True Temper Dynamic Gold

Irons: Titleist 718 CB (5-9)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Wedges: Titleist SM7 (46, 50, 53, 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: TaylorMade Spider OS CB

Ball: Titleist Pro V1 (2017)

Patton Kizzire

Driver: Titleist TS3 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder TR 757 X-flex

3-wood: Titleist 917F2 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Tour Blue 95 X-flex

Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees)
Shaft: UST Mamiya Axiv Core X-flex

Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), Titleist 718 CB (5-6), Titleist 718 MB (7-9)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Titleist SM7 (48, 52, 56, 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Onyx X100

Putter: Scotty Cameron Golo Tour

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x (2017)

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Bettinardi signs Eddie Pepperell

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Eddie Pepperell is a singular quantity in to world of golf, so it’s not surprising that the Englishman has taken a unique route to becoming a Bettinardi staffer.

20 months ago, the two-time European Tour winner walked into Core Golf in Thame, Oxfordshire, and bought four putters, including a Bettinardi Studio Stock No. 8.

Pepperell, who jumped from No. 513 to No. 38 in the OWGR since putting the Bettinardi in play in April 2017, won’t have to pay for his putters any more. He joins the likes Francesco Molinari, Haotong Li, and Matt Kuchar as a Bettinardi staffer, the company announced the today.

“I’ve tried a number of putters and time and again, it’s the one model I keep coming back to.” said Eddie. “Positively I won’t have to buy a Bettinardi putter again, but having bought four putters from Core Golf I’m just hoping I haven’t put them of business as a result!” he added.

It was after Pepperell’s British Masters triumph in October that negotiations to bring him on board began in earnest.

“Once Eddie stayed ahead of a strong field at the British Masters to win his second Tour title of the year with a Bettinardi putter, we decided to reopen negotiations and we’re delighted with the outcome. It means that we now have another top 50 player in the world playing Bettinardi putters…” said Executive Vice President, Sam Bettinardi.

Here are the specs for his Studio Stock No. 8, courtesy of Bettinardi, which also provided the photos below of Pepperell’s putter (pre rust).

Material: Mild Carbon Steel
Finish: Mercury Gray PVD Finish
Face Milling: F.I.T. Face
Weight: 358 grams
Length: 33.25”
Lie: 71 degrees
Loft: 3 degrees

A more recent (and rusted shot) below of Pepperell’s putter at The Open.

 

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Miura offers fully assembled custom club e-commerce service

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Miura Golf has announced that the company now offers fully assembled custom clubs direct to consumers through its website.

The new e-commerce platform was launched over Thanksgiving weekend, and it allows golfers to build an entire set of clubs custom to their preference. Golfers can choose from 10 different types of irons and custom make their club by choosing between different head, shaft and grip options. As well as the irons, Miura also provides golfers with the opportunity to custom make their driving irons, wedges and putter.

For Miura’s premium club, the MC-501 Chrome (4-iron-PW), customers have the choice between eight different heads, 13 shafts, and 14 grips.

Speaking on the new service, Miura Golf President Hoyt McGarity stated

“We are committed to introducing more golfers to the pure pleasure of hitting a Miura club. With miuragolf.com’s new e-commerce capability, it has never been easier for golfers to have such direct access to Miura products.”

Lawrence Place, CFO, spoke to the target consumer for the fully assembled custom club offerings

“Miuragolf.com is primarily for someone who already knows his/her specs or doesn’t have easy access to an authorized dealer. Our eCommerce offering is not intended to replace a full fitting at an authorized dealer, as we still believe that this is the best way to fit into a set of Miura’s.”

While long-time Miura enthusiasts may be wondering why the company chose this route now, it seems the answer is simple economics: demand.

On that subject, Will Miele, North America Sales Manager, said

“At this point, we wanted to be able to fulfill the demand for consumers who did not have an option to order full built sets of Miura products. So this phase one release gives golfers, who have their specs, the opportunity to go online and place a custom order. We highly recommend golfers seek out Miura dealers in their area through our dealer locator on our website and get properly fit.

“As we develop our website we will be adding features that will help consumers who cannot get to a local dealer a way to narrow down their options for better performance.”

The most expensive custom made iron options begin at $1,960, while the most affordable options start at $1,350. The custom clubs are available now at MiuraGolf.com.

 

 

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