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Regripping query, shaft rust


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#1 Jiggered

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 09:24 AM

Hi All,

I have a question on regripping old clubs and what can be done with shafts that have started to rust, and when are they too far gone to save?

I'm sure some of you who live in a damp climate (ie the UK or similar) will have experience of peeling back the grips of old clubs and finding the shafts have deteriorated over the years.

I'm doing my first regripping of a set of steel shafted clubs and have found various levels of rust, see below for three examples.
The top one has lost quite a bit of chrome going down the shaft but is still solid apart from the very tip.
The middle one has most of the chrome (if somewhat discoloured) still on it but has rusted at the tip.
The bottom one lost very little chrome apart from the very end.
All have varying degrees of rust inside the shafts.

Attached File  Shaft rust.jpg   100.12K   15 downloads

My questions are:
  • Do you use oil or anything similar to future protect the shafts when regripping, maybe a squirt down the inside of the shaft?
  • Are any or all of these shafts too far gone to consider saving? (I'll probably try anyway as I bought a cheap set of grips to experiment with and I want to pay these tomorrow if possible!)
Thanks in advance.

Edited by Jiggered, 28 April 2018 - 09:25 AM.


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#2 raggal62

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 09:42 AM

To me the middle and top shafts look suspect. Bottom shaft looks decent enough. A flashlight beam down the inside may be a better indicator of the overall condition.

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#3 disco111

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 10:20 AM

The first 2 shafts are very suspect to breaking. I had the same problem with a set of Hogan PC's (80's vintage) and had 2 clubs shafts snap on impact and was standing there with just the top of the club in my hands. Rust on the inside of the shaft, where it's difficult to see is the main problem and cause for failure. If you plan on playing these clubs, I would change shafts..........

Edited by disco111, 28 April 2018 - 10:21 AM.


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#4 Jagpilotohio

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 10:44 AM

If you have that much rust on the outside of the shaft that was coated in protective chrome I can only imagine what the inside looks like that was uncoated originally.  I literally would not hit those near anyone for fear of the head breaking off and maiming someone.
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#5 Jiggered

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 02:10 PM

Seems a pretty strong consensus of what I feared.

I can see now why people are often on the lookout for a set of donor clubs with mediocre heads but decent shafts, that's what will be on my radar going forwards!


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#6 Shallowface

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 03:37 PM

View PostJagpilotohio, on 28 April 2018 - 10:44 AM, said:

If you have that much rust on the outside of the shaft that was coated in protective chrome I can only imagine what the inside looks like that was uncoated originally.  I literally would not hit those near anyone for fear of the head breaking off and maiming someone.

Many older shafts didn't have chrome all the way to the butt, so the clubs in the picture probably never had any chrome there to lose.  I think it was the 1980s before shafts were generally available fully chromed.

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#7 wkuo3

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 07:08 PM

The end of the top two shafts are too far gone to be played, and the bottom one needs to be inspected to see how badly the interior of the shaft had rusted out.
Imaging if the butt end were that badly rusted, what kind of condition would be inside the shaft ?   I would not put these to play myself.  You could if you're not worried of losing a golf club or getting someone hurt when the shaft broke apart during a golf swing.

Never put any lubricant down the inside of the shaft if you're thinking of preserving the shaft.  Keeping the golf clubs free moisture built up is the only way of prolonging the life of the old metal.

There was a story of reshafting a set of irons owned by Greg Norman,  The golf smith epoxy the shaft back as usual and gave it back, Greg came back with loose heads on this set of irons, so the golf smith changed to another epoxy and pay attention to prep and curing process to make sure the epoxy will cure properly.  The club heads came loose again.  All the while, Greg did not tell the club smith that he spray some lubricant down the inside of the shaft to "preserve" the metal from rusting...... the residue was not cleaned up ( some could not be cleaned up ) and caused the bonding issue for the epoxy.

There is two kinds of golf clubs with age, one kind you keep as much the original as you could and show case it either in your trophy room or den, these will never see a golf ball on the golf course.  One kind you refinished to be played.  If these are old collectibles, I'd keep them as original as possible, but seeing that you had already removed the grips so you must be thinking of gaming them ?
Research if you could get the replacement shafts before you pull the old shafts and enjoy them on the golf course.  Some have unconventional tip size.

Edited by wkuo3, 28 April 2018 - 07:10 PM.


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#8 BIG STU

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 08:12 PM

Another thing that has not been brought up is the fact those first two shafts could literally break under your hand and severely injure you. Some years back I had one on a set of Power Bilt Scotch Blades break off in my hands. Luckily I was not injured. Another friend of mine was not so lucky he had the top of a shaft break off in his hands and was injured. Most of the time that is why on most of my clubs if I am going to game them I will pull the grips. Those first two shafts have one or two uses --- Either the scrap pile or Tomato plant stakes
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#9 Jiggered

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 03:42 AM

Thanks everyone for your advice. I definitely want to play the clubs, the grips weren't original and the heads aren't in top condition, nor are they a particularly collectable club, Ben Sayers, Ray Floyd as below.

I guess I'll have to find a local charity shop with plenty of used clubs where I can check tip diameters as most sellers on ebay won't be able to say.

Attached File  Ben Sayers Ray Floyd heads.jpg   106.33K   5 downloads

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#10 stixman

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 04:18 AM

There are loads of horror stories about what can go wrong.

However what can go wrong is not always a given. Here is a message of hope from golf's most radical butcher!
I, too, have had shafts in similar condition. There was a set of Paul Azinger Autograph Diamond Back 'Big Ms' that came from Accrington ( the second soggiest place on the Planet) that looked pretty doubtful players.
As you will know I have a ready supply of dead hickory shafts. I cleaned up the steel shafts as best i could, put some 'Waxoyl' down for good luck, sawed of a couple off the worst rusted bits and the made up the length of the shafts with hickory plugs epoxied in place. The other steel shafts I used the dowel to support doubtful steel.
You know what comes next.
They were fine, Swing weights that were a bit off were compensated with a bit of lead tape.... but nothing broke and I had two years pleasure out of a set of clubs that would have otherwise been binned

Vintage various.

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#11 wkuo3

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 09:29 AM

View PostJiggered, on 29 April 2018 - 03:42 AM, said:

Thanks everyone for your advice. I definitely want to play the clubs, the grips weren't original and the heads aren't in top condition, nor are they a particularly collectable club, Ben Sayers, Ray Floyd as below.

I guess I'll have to find a local charity shop with plenty of used clubs where I can check tip diameters as most sellers on ebay won't be able to say.

Attachment Ben Sayers Ray Floyd heads.jpg

Not 100% certain but from the age of the irons, they're probably just tapered shafts.  To confirm this you could pull the shaft and measure the tip since you're not going to save the original shafts.
Lots of tapered shafts either new or from a donor club.

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#12 TimV

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 08:47 AM

View Poststixman, on 29 April 2018 - 04:18 AM, said:

There are loads of horror stories about what can go wrong.

However what can go wrong is not always a given. Here is a message of hope from golf's most radical butcher!
I, too, have had shafts in similar condition. There was a set of Paul Azinger Autograph Diamond Back 'Big Ms' that came from Accrington ( the second soggiest place on the Planet) that looked pretty doubtful players.
As you will know I have a ready supply of dead hickory shafts. I cleaned up the steel shafts as best i could, put some 'Waxoyl' down for good luck, sawed of a couple off the worst rusted bits and the made up the length of the shafts with hickory plugs epoxied in place. The other steel shafts I used the dowel to support doubtful steel.
You know what comes next.
They were fine, Swing weights that were a bit off were compensated with a bit of lead tape.... but nothing broke and I had two years pleasure out of a set of clubs that would have otherwise been binned

+1 ... Was going to say something similar but you beat me to it.
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#13 dcopp7

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 07:24 PM

I have a set of Ram Accubars you can have for shipping cost.  Measure the tip and I'll  mic the Rams.  Most likely mine are .370 straights
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#14 Jiggered

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 01:38 AM

View Postdcopp7, on 30 April 2018 - 07:24 PM, said:

I have a set of Ram Accubars you can have for shipping cost.  Measure the tip and I'll  mic the Rams.  Most likely mine are .370 straights

Many thanks for the kind offer dcopp but I'm in the UK so unfortunately shipping costs will be uneconomical.

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#15 Chris122

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 10:05 AM

Plus the 'interest' that Customs and Excise take in any imports,v.a.t. payable on overall value including shipping cost and Royal Mail handling charge,all in all enough to make you want to slash your wrists which is what you're trying to avoid in the first place.
I too have sanded down shafts for closer inspection,trimmed and fitted either a piece of steel shaft or dowel with no ill effects.
That's with vintage clubs that will have a very occasional outing and not subjected to constant play or the rigours of the practice ground.
As a matter of course I always spray some WD-40 inside the shafts when regripping,turning the shaft clubhead down to try to coat internal walls then insert a removable wad of tissue and stand it head up to allow the WD to run back down into the paper which I use to wipe any hint of rust away.
When regripping I always allow a very healthy overlap of tape at the butt end that can be twisted and used to seal it off to prevent water leeching into the grip.
In the past I also used trimmed,broken tees inserted into the hole in the grip to keep them off the bottom of the bag but as I mostly carry these days the tape plug I find preferable.

Edit to add that this is in no way designed to contradict or detract from what either Big Stu or wkuo3 have said who are far more experienced in club repairs than I.

Edited by Chris122, 01 May 2018 - 10:19 AM.


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#16 sbboudreau

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Posted 02 May 2018 - 09:51 PM

Re-shaft those babies. I’ve re-gripped a few clubs that had very minimal surface rust and the inside of the shafts actually looked better than the outsides. Changing a shaft is actually quite easy, major sticking point is finding the spine and mount it 180 opposite of the swing path, for a righty the spine needs to be 90 to the right of the face of the head or at 3 o’clock lefties just the opposite. Check out a video on YouTube to familiarize yourself with changing a shaft. It isn’t that hard. http://www.golfclubs...ne_aligning.htm

Edited by sbboudreau, 02 May 2018 - 09:52 PM.

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