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Forum Thread of the Day: “What ever happened to Scratch Golf?”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from Dr Rangelove who as a fan of club manufacturer Scratch Golf, wanted to know what had happened to the company. Our members filled Dr Rangelove in on the details that while Scratch Golf was no more, the owners Patrick Boyd and Jeff McCoy (with help from Don White) were back with their new golf business National Custom Works producing handmade irons and wedges for their diehard customers.

Scratch Golf founder Ari Techner, aka FairwayFred, popped into the thread to fill our members in on some of the details on what happened to Scratch Golf.

“I think the best way to tell the short version of the story is, it is VERY hard to compete with the big boys in the golf equipment industry.  I started Scratch with Jeff McCoy at 23 years old with a $10k investment in my garage, and we grew it to a multi-million dollar company that changed the way companies offer customization to their customers.” 

“We did a ton of things amazingly well but made a few mistakes along the way which as a small company without deep pockets you just can’t do.  In the end, the company was taken over by an investor who has done nothing with it that I know of.  I’m very proud of my work at Scratch and have very fond memories of all we did there.”

Our members have been reminiscing about the company’s clubs, as well as discussing the latest handmade irons and wedges on offer at National Custom Works. 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.

  • mothon: “I remember not too long ago seeing scratch clubs in the bags of a ton of good players at the local courses, so I went out and bought two 8620 wedges which I still game to this day.   I don’t see Scratch clubs in any bags these days.”
  • MtlJeff: “It’s crazy how time flies, and I have to remind myself that many new members might not remember Scratch Golf in their heyday. For those that don’t, Scratch was THE brand here for quite some time. They had 2-3 standard sets, but you could get the full tour experience and get a completely custom set for something like 2500$ (very reasonable). It was unfortunate becomes it seemed like the challenges started when the company was experiencing it’s most expansion and recognition, Hot list awards, LPGA and PGA staffers. I always wondered if that was the cause of the issues. Ari does not need to answer that I am just wondering aloud. I will say that some members were probably too hard on Scratch at the end (though backlash to popular niche brands is also common online) because at the end of the day I can’t imagine a company better-exemplifying everything that we are as a site. I wish Scratch was still around.”
  • KMo23: “Scratch is back and better than ever! Those clubs were meant to be Uber premium and IMO not massed produced. Get your Don White custom grinds while he’s still doing them boys! Treat yourselves! Can’t wait to get mine! Had a set of DW blades back in scratch days and have been searching since!”

Entire Thread: “Whatever happened to Scratch Golf?”

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Gianni is a freelance writer. He holds a Bachelor of Arts as well as a Diploma in Sports Journalism. He can be contacted at gmagliocco@outlook.com. Follow him on Twitter @giancarlomag

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. pete

    Feb 14, 2019 at 1:43 am

    another golf company that went down the tubes!this other company same thing down the tubes!

  2. Tom

    Feb 12, 2019 at 4:39 pm

    C- Ya

  3. rex235

    Feb 12, 2019 at 2:58 am

    Gianni-

    Met and interviewed both Patrick Boyd and Don White in 2012. Have posted photos on Golfwrx.

    Then, Scratch didn’t offer a LH model of the irons shown in your photo.

    PS -‘Twas also my understanding FairwayFred is Ari Techners Wrx handle.

  4. Putt Stuff

    Feb 11, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    Ari Techner is FairwayFred, it says as much in his signature. Cheers

  5. Speedy

    Feb 11, 2019 at 12:21 pm

    Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Good luck going forward.

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Accessory Reviews

WRX Spotlight: AfterShokz Trekz Air headphones

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AfterShokz Trekz Air Wireless Open Ear Headphones

Honestly, this is not a review we intended on doing. Wireless headphones were not on our radar for 2019, and certainly not on our list of “golf essential” equipment. But an ad for Aftershokz headphones caught our eye. Sleek. Lightweight and “Open Ear”? We needed to check them out in person. With that, here we are.

Product: AfterShokz Trekz Air wireless open air headphones

Basically, this is a wireless headset with bluetooth connectivity with and open ear design. You can still hear your music AND the world around you at the same time. It’s a bit of genius. If you like sports but are one of those “one earbud in, one out so you can hear your surroundings” people, AfterShokz is marketing to you.

Pitch: From AfterShokz: “The next generation of bone conduction technology is what’s inside our lightest and most organically designed open ear headphones to date. We cut the bulk and used titanium everywhere possible to ensure they not only fit more securely but sound better too. Trekz Air are inspired by the demands of elite and aspiring athletes motivated by their music and their world.”

Our take on the AfterShokz Trekz

While the AfterShokz Trekz Air are not golf specific, they are a nearly perfect accessory for your range practice time. They are comfortable, sweat and water resistant and have very good sound. The open air nature is a huge plus, so you can still hear the world around you while listening to music, a recorded lesson, or a golf tempo trainer. Aftershokz claims up to a 6-hours of continuous use on a single charge. We found that to be fairly accurate.

While the $149 price point is not small change, these are not golf specific and can be worn daily. We found them to be plenty comfortable jogging, biking and just running errands. Some reviewers on the internet claim they weren’t as comfortable on the ears over a long period of time, but we didn’t experience it. We were able to wear them comfortably for extended periods with and without glasses or with or without a hat or helmet.

Very impressed.

One criticism is we felt the mic functionality was a little spotty. The users on the other end had some difficulty hearing us on the phone. It works in a pinch, but for longer conversations, we thought it was just easier to disconnect the device and put the phone to our ear.

While AfterShokz Trekz Air wireless headphones won’t make your golf game better, their one of our favorite golf accessories of 2019 so far.

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Equipment

WRX Spotlight Review: Miura KM-009 putter

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Product: Miura KM-009 putter

Pitch: From Miura: “A rolled top line and a tapered heel help to deliver a putter head which is both pleasing to the eye and easy to square to your putting line. As is the case with our other putters, the milled face is extremely forgiving and produces a strike which transmits to the feel, distance control and in achieving the truest of rolls from reduced skid. This classic putter design goes through the same forging process as our irons.”

Our take on the Miura KM-009 putter

When you hear the name Miura, you think of forged irons, forged wedges, and tales of Tiger’s old clubs. Rarely do we think of putters when we hear that legendary name. Like the classic, legendary name’s wares, the KM-009 putter has a classic shape and great lines.

The Miura KM-009 is a chunky looking version of the classic Anser blade putter in a brushed white chrome. From address, it has a thick top line and looks a little shorter heel to toe, with slightly rounded bumpers. Almost like a Newport and Newport 2 had a child!

The flange seems to be a standard length with a single thin sight line. From behind the flange and bumpers are thick and hefty, giving you the look of being really solid. I am typically not a blade putter guy, but I like the thicker look of the KM-009, as other blades can get to small and thin for my eye. The face milling looks great going from shallow at the top of the putter to deeper near the bottom.

On the green the white chrome color contrasts well and I personally like the shape. I know shape is personal and how it looks to your eye could be drastically different. With the thicker top line I think the heavier bumpers help frame the ball well and focus your eyes more towards the sightline. Again, putter feel and sound really depends on the player and to me the KM-009 is a great feeling and sounding flatstick. The thicker face provides a really solid feel, responsive but without any unnecessary vibration.

Even putts off the heel and toe have a solid feel with just a slight bit more vibration to them. The distance on those mishits was actually better than I thought. For a putter that doesn’t have touted technology in the face the rollout was really good. Now those same mishit shots did travel farther offline, missing the cup by more than a couple inches each way.

The sound of the putter to me was perfect, with just the light click on impact.

The only negative to the putter is that the milling on my head wasn’t flawless. Inside the logo on the sole and near the model number you could see some milling that shouldn’t be there, something that shouldn’t be an issue on a $400 putter. From images on the web I haven’t seen other heads with similar issues, so it is probably just this one.

Overall, the KM-009 is for the player who wants great feel and sound, without caring about tech. Miura club users will find themselves in familiar territory with the KM-009: phenomenal feel and sound in a traditional package.

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Equipment

Forum Thread of the Day: “The hunt for the perfect 5-wood”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from keithrichards, who is looking to add a 5-wood to his bag. Good elevation off the deck is a crucial requirement in his search, and ignoring the latest lines, our members discuss what 5-wood they believe is the best option.

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.

  • uwhockey14: “Sonartec, 19* is an awesome club with the right shaft in it. Excellent off the deck! Only 5-Wood I’ve been able to be somewhat consistent with as I played 2-Iron for years and years and struggle with hybrids!”
  • mwink822: “I like my Titleist 917 F2 from all areas (tee, fairway and rough).  The Ping G400 was also a good performer, but I hated the way it looked behind the ball.  The Callaway Steelhead XR is also a good option, but I elected not to go that avenue myself as the 5-wood has a slightly closed (to my eyes anyway) appearance at address.”
  • mowakebum: “G400 5 wood, easy to hit, put it in the bag last year and it’s in no danger of being replaced. Point and shoot full send.”
  • Mitchell: “In a 5-wood, still very difficult to beat a V steel with the appropriate shaft for your stated needs in a non-adjustable.In adjustable, the various Cobra clubs with baffler rail system would be a great place to start, f6 baffler is phenomenal out of rough.”

Entire Thread: “The hunt for the perfect 5-wood”

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