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Club Champion fitting -- purchase elsewhere?


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#1 AustinGolfGuy

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 11:34 AM

Hi there,

Long time lurker, first time poster here.

I'm an 11 handicap index and have always bought clubs based on sales, or a friend-of-a-friend who works for Taylor Made.  Anyway, I decided to go to Club Champion for a full bag fitting. The experience was really awesome and eye-opening.  I'd recommend it.

Now for the bad news.  They are recommending a $4,500 set of clubs.  Sure I can pay it, but that doesn't mean I want to OVERpay.  I'm told they are asking for an extra $35 PER shaft on the irons and even more on the Driver/Woods shafts.

Anyone have a similar experience and been successful procuring clubs elsewhere?

On a scale of 1-10, I'm about a 3 in terms of club buying, so forgive me for anything overly obvious I'm asking.  Thanks in advance!


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#2 Z1ggy16

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 11:46 AM

There's no law that says you need to buy from them, especially if you can build yourself. For example.... say I did a full bag and got fit into a Rogue SZ with a AD-IZ, that comes out to $600 new. I could very easily find a used SZ head on BST, and then find a IZ pull and buy the adapter online and build the club myself for maybe 1/2 the cost. Repeat for all clubs, other than maybe the putter, because I don't have a bending machine.

Otherwise if you don't build yourself, there's no other shortcuts unless you find your exact specs somewhere else online for sale for less money, which isn't super likely.
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#3 Piso

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 12:43 PM

I did a fitting recently with them and only bought the driver through them since it was an exotic shaft and I probably wouldn't save too much money trying to buy it myself. I ended up buying the irons I was fitted into straight from the manufacturer since luckily the manufacturer offered the shaft I wanted for an up charge. That saved a decent amount of money from the fitter's estimate.

I would say to shop around first and see if the manufacturers offer the shaft you want.

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#4 cjblake09

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 12:53 PM

You paid for the fitting not the clubs so of course shop around.

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#5 Blakester

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 01:05 PM

Yes - shop around.  You paid for the fitting and have no obligation to buy clubs from them.  I did a driver fitting with them last year and got fitted into a TaylorMade M1 440 head with Diamana Whiteboard Stiff shaft.  They wanted about $1,200 for that combo and I went on ebay and bought the head and shaft separately for about $350 total.  Granted, it's not the new Limited Whiteboard, but still....

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#6 Matt97GT

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 01:09 PM

I did a fitting with True Spec and same deal.  They charge full MSRP for the club, full charge for the shaft and grip, and also spine/flow and install.

$4600 bucks for a set of titleist clubs.  I can have a retailer put in a custom order direct to Titleist for same exact stuff at less than half price.  

Their selling point is custom spec guaranteed.  I'm hesitant to believe Titleist would be that much off to justify the extra $2k.

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#7 broth518

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 01:26 PM

you paid them for their time so no need to buy. Yeah there prices are a little nutty

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#8 golfnhack

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 01:59 PM

IMHO, Club Champion (an most other) club fitters have alternate agendas. They push whichever shaft has the highest profit margin for them. There are a couple of other "Annoyances".... if you win a free fitting, the time/effort given to you is NOT the same as if you pay for one. They same can be said for 1/2 off fittings.

Club Champion is good if you have unlimited cash and paid full price for a full fitting. But they will still push their highest profit margin stuff on you.

It's a business after all. They have their own interests at heart.... not yours.

Just my .02

Edited by golfnhack, 07 June 2018 - 02:10 PM.

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#9 RichieHunt

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 05:50 PM

They charge ala carte pricing.  Essentially, if you order a driver from them, they will charge you what the retail price is for the driver (say $400), then the retail price for the shaft (say $300) and then for the grip (say $10).  Then they charge for labor, so you're looking at a driver somewhere between $800-$850.

The problem is that you can often find deals on a club if all you're looking for is the head.  Hell, the equipment manufacturer may have a custom option for the shaft and only charge, say $50 extra.  And what I find is that these brand agnostic fitters like Club Champion are not aggressively seeking out low prices.  For instance, part of the quote I was given was for a $300 Aldila Rogue shaft.  I'm sure it was retailed at $300 when Aldila first came out with it.  But, by now I was able to find authorized dealers selling the shaft, stand-alone, for $120 brand new.

I build my own clubs, so it makes the process even cheaper for me.






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#10 gibbyfan

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 06:30 PM

To be truthful, it depends on what you were fit for? If the iron shafts were stock or somewhat exotic you would be better going through the OEM. If you were best fit into a Shimana/Oban steel shaft then you might want to work it out with CC. I have my reservations with CC and their build quality. But that was a number of years ago... before they took over the fitting industry.


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#11 kmak

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 09:50 AM

I don't know about CC, but I have bought my bag from True Spec.  I can and have built my own clubs in the past. I bought from True Spec because they first fit me in PXG irons - I absolutely had the best numbers with them - and there wasn't much savings trying to buy used heads and reshaft them (plus it is a pain in the a** assembling a set of irons and getting the specs perfect, IMO).  The build quality on the irons was outstanding - lofts, lies, lengths and SW were spot on through the set.  I then got fitted for woods six months later.  I was tempted to build the woods myself, but bought through them because the fitter was great and I wanted to support him (he's a great golfer btw, made the quarters of the US MidAm last year).

From what i have heard, the manufacturers doing "custom" orders can be hit or miss on specs.

Also, if I wasn't happy with the clubs after fitting, they would work with me to get something I liked.

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#12 BB28403

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Posted 11 June 2018 - 11:02 PM

This is entertaining,  how do they stay in business if everyone uses them as an expert fitter only?

And how expert could they be if you don’t trust them enough to give them your business?  

You have to admit it’s quite ironic that you would trust them with their expert opinion and not buy from them.  You prob could get all the info you need from a Golfworks magazine and in this part of the forum.

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#13 Bar_Stroll

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 08:48 AM

Same here, fit at True Spec last month. My clubs totaled $4500 from them.

I bought the irons through my course and with the shafts I was fit for for hundreds less. I measure all the specs and they are perfect. I can get the hybrid I was fit for with the KBS shaft for $200 cheaper straight from Callaway. I found the 3-wood shaft for half the price they listed, etc. etc.

I'm mid handicap like you and do not need all my shafts Pured. No way I'm going to tell the difference playing a few times a month. You have all your numbers and you know what you liked and what you didn't like. It is not carved in stone you must use exactly that for all time or buy from them.

Also, yes you paid for their "expertise" but you also paid to hit from a huge assortment of clubs/shafts and find what works and also rule out what doesn't work. That alone to me was worth a bunch of money. You paid for access as much as expertise. Don't let anyone tell you what value you HAVE to get out of a fitting.
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#14 Glaze22

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 09:16 AM

I went and had a full bag fitting, loved every second of it!! Had them adjust my putter, and took my spec sheet. Through CC it was going to cost $4700+ without a putter. I bought my bag exactly to the specs elsewhere, shafts etc for $2148.00 and that included a $320 Accra shaft and $480 Veylix shafts (numbers dont lie, so worth the price). Deff go get your stuff elsewhere, but but but just understand when you buy from CC you are not paying for just clubs, you are paying for a guarantee/warranty of the clubs themselves and that they will work. I was willing to forgo the double price. I do have a friend that did buy from them, his irons did not get the results on the course he/they expected. Went back in, refitted, reshafted, loft, lie adjustments. His cost $0.00.

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#15 KMeloney

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 09:56 AM

View PostBB28403, on 11 June 2018 - 11:02 PM, said:

This is entertaining,  how do they stay in business if everyone uses them as an expert fitter only?

Plenty of people do buy through them. Also, I can't say that their business isn't based mostly on fittings and not on club sales.

Quote

And how expert could they be if you don’t trust them enough to give them your business?

Huh? What does their fitting or club-building expertise have to do with buying [potentially more expensive clubs] through them? If you think they're great fitters, but you can't afford to buy through them, then you must not really think they're experts? That makes no sense.

Quote

You have to admit it’s quite ironic that you would trust them with their expert opinion and not buy from them.

What is "ironic" about it? Do you understand that purchasing clubs through CC can cost much more than purchasing the same spec'ed clubs elsewhere? Or that you might be able to find your spec'ed clubs on the shelf and be able to have them immediately instead of waiting for CC to get the components in and build them? There are any number of reasons why someone would get a fitting, rely completely on the expertise of the CC fitter, and then not purchase clubs from CC.

If you actively didn't trust the expertise of the fitter and decided not to buy clubs to his recommendation because of it, then that correlation between not trusting and not buying makes complete sense. But the inverse -- not buying through them means that you didn't trust the fitting; or the only way to validate their expertise is to buy through them -- isn't logical.

Quote

You prob could get all the info you need from a Golfworks magazine and in this part of the forum.

What info? The same info you'd get from a CC fitting? Uh, no.


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#16 BB28403

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 10:38 AM

View PostKMeloney, on 12 June 2018 - 09:56 AM, said:

View PostBB28403, on 11 June 2018 - 11:02 PM, said:

This is entertaining,  how do they stay in business if everyone uses them as an expert fitter only?

Plenty of people do buy through them. Also, I can't say that their business isn't based mostly on fittings and not on club sales.

Quote

And how expert could they be if you don’t trust them enough to give them your business?

Huh? What does their fitting or club-building expertise have to do with buying [potentially more expensive clubs] through them? If you think they're great fitters, but you can't afford to buy through them, then you must not really think they're experts? That makes no sense.

Quote

You have to admit it’s quite ironic that you would trust them with their expert opinion and not buy from them.

What is "ironic" about it? Do you understand that purchasing clubs through CC can cost much more than purchasing the same spec'ed clubs elsewhere? Or that you might be able to find your spec'ed clubs on the shelf and be able to have them immediately instead of waiting for CC to get the components in and build them? There are any number of reasons why someone would get a fitting, rely completely on the expertise of the CC fitter, and then not purchase clubs from CC.

If you actively didn't trust the expertise of the fitter and decided not to buy clubs to his recommendation because of it, then that correlation between not trusting and not buying makes complete sense. But the inverse -- not buying through them means that you didn't trust the fitting; or the only way to validate their expertise is to buy through them -- isn't logical.

Quote

You prob could get all the info you need from a Golfworks magazine and in this part of the forum.

What info? The same info you'd get from a CC fitting? Uh, no.

would you take your bag that you bought elsewhere back into club champions in a few years?  And say “oh yeah I bought these somewhere else”?

They probably would laugh at you and ask “so all this info I give you, you are just going to go somewhere else to buy it?”

And yes if no one on this thread trusts club champion enough to spend the money, then I would think to doubt their expertise if I was a potential customer.  Because everyone on this thread doubts their expertise enough not to spend the extra money.  You are willing to let an extra $1000-1500 get in the way of your relationship with your fitter.  So you are tire kickers to CC.  That’s how they see you.

Edited by BB28403, 12 June 2018 - 10:42 AM.


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#17 KC13

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:13 AM

I think those asking prices are crazy!  It seems the sole benefit of this experience would be getting the fitting and finding what clubs match well with your swing.  I'd suggest looking for these clubs that were recommended individually throughout internet, golf stores and OEM websites.  Sometimes OEM upgrades are a hell of a lot cheaper.  

IMO, part of the fun in golf is trial and error, building your clubs, finding that frankenstein unicorn club that for some reason, just works.  (Mine: TM V-Steel 3W with a "made for" SLDR Fujikura 77 X)

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#18 BB28403

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:17 AM

View PostKC13, on 12 June 2018 - 11:13 AM, said:

I think those asking prices are crazy!  It seems the sole benefit of this experience would be getting the fitting and finding what clubs match well with your swing.  I'd suggest looking for these clubs that were recommended individually throughout internet, golf stores and OEM websites.  Sometimes OEM upgrades are a hell of a lot cheaper.  

IMO, part of the fun in golf is trial and error, building your clubs, finding that frankenstein unicorn club that for some reason, just works.  (Mine: TM V-Steel 3W with a "made for" SLDR Fujikura 77 X)

- KC

I agree!  That is one of the best parts of golf.  It’s so easy to turn over the hard work to a stranger who we think knows what they are talking about.  Just trust your gut.  Go hit some clubs on a course or range.  That’s the fun part.

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#19 semarlor

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 11:27 AM

I think if they weren't ok with it, they wouldn't let it happen. If the agreement was "if you buy from us, we will fully fit you and build to those specs" then you would be obligated to buy from them after the fitting. But, as I understand it, that's not the case. They offer the fitting with the option to buy from them. Some will...some won't. As a business, if they didn't want it to happen they would have a policy in place to prevent it.

Edited by semarlor, 12 June 2018 - 11:28 AM.


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#20 Matt97GT

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 12:01 PM

View PostBB28403, on 11 June 2018 - 11:02 PM, said:

This is entertaining,  how do they stay in business if everyone uses them as an expert fitter only?

And how expert could they be if you don’t trust them enough to give them your business?  

You have to admit it’s quite ironic that you would trust them with their expert opinion and not buy from them.  You prob could get all the info you need from a Golfworks magazine and in this part of the forum.


I trust them on their ability to build a set of golf clubs....but I'm still allowed to factor in price and value add.

As someone else pointed out, paying for the fitting is also about access to a larger demo inventory, and also trackman time.  I absolutely trust their numbers much more than a demo launch monitor booth at a big box store.

So, they provided me with the info on which club head and shaft combo worked best for me.  After that, I shop for a reasonable price.


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#21 snoilr1

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 12:31 PM

View PostBB28403, on 11 June 2018 - 11:02 PM, said:

This is entertaining,  how do they stay in business if everyone uses them as an expert fitter only?

And how expert could they be if you dont trust them enough to give them your business?  

You have to admit its quite ironic that you would trust them with their expert opinion and not buy from them.  You prob could get all the info you need from a Golfworks magazine and in this part of the forum.

If you go to them for a fitting, you are giving them your business. They charge several hundred dollars for that fitting. That cost isnt rolled into the cost of the clubs you buy, like some places.  That is why they give you the information at the end of the fitting, and how they dont go out of business when people dont buy clubs from them.
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#22 KMeloney

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 01:31 PM

View PostBB28403, on 12 June 2018 - 11:17 AM, said:

View PostKC13, on 12 June 2018 - 11:13 AM, said:

I think those asking prices are crazy!  It seems the sole benefit of this experience would be getting the fitting and finding what clubs match well with your swing.  I'd suggest looking for these clubs that were recommended individually throughout internet, golf stores and OEM websites.  Sometimes OEM upgrades are a hell of a lot cheaper.  

IMO, part of the fun in golf is trial and error, building your clubs, finding that frankenstein unicorn club that for some reason, just works.  (Mine: TM V-Steel 3W with a "made for" SLDR Fujikura 77 X)

- KC

I agree!  That is one of the best parts of golf.  It’s so easy to turn over the hard work to a stranger who we think knows what they are talking about.  Just trust your gut.  Go hit some clubs on a course or range.  That’s the fun part.

I'm not sure what you're trying to offer to this thread. The OP is experiencing the quandary of having a great fitting experience but wondering if it's ok to not buy the recommended clubs through CC because they're charging much more (you know, that chump change you referred to as "extra"). He never said he didn't trust the fitter and his knowledge and ultimate recommendation -- in fact, that's the quandary. He DOES want to by the clubs that are recommended -- he just doesn't want to buy through CC if he can get THE SAME THING much cheaper elsewhere. You don't seem to be understanding the core of the thread.

You're welcome to "trust your gut" (and presumably pay twice as much on food for it than you need to) by just hitting whatever clubs you can get your hands on on the range. But that's not what this thread is about.

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#23 Circaflex

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 01:47 PM

Most of these "tour level" fittings, cost an arm and a leg extra, but the service and quality is bar-none. I haven't used Club Champion, but I used somewhere similar and they had various options ranging from, Good/Better/Best. Good was generally stock OEM shafts, better were upgrades via OEM and best were custom shafts not offered by the OEM. What you can do, and I highly recommend this, is be sure to check with the OEM and see what their upgrade options are, find something similar or the same as what you were recommended at Club Champion. You can also take the specs they offered you and buy the pieces yourself and have a builder put it together. Another area Club Champion and some of the more expensive fittings will get you is with spining/puring of the shaft. I know when PING builds the clubs for you, they dont recommend anyone paying for that service because the shafts they have are matched sets to begin with and I bet other OEMs now do this as well, plus quality control has improved tremendously over the years. What is probably happening is they are charging you for the heads, the aftermarket shafts, puring of the shaft, probably having to pay for grips (also check with OEM and see what they offer for FREE), and then of course Club Champion labor. Some might not agree with me, but I definitely could tell the difference between clubs built by a top level fitting company and just your local golf shop.
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#24 phatchrisrules

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 08:39 PM

View PostGlaze22, on 12 June 2018 - 09:16 AM, said:

t just understand when you buy from CC you are not paying for just clubs, you are paying for a guarantee/warranty of the clubs themselves and that they will work. I was willing to forgo the double price. I do have a friend that did buy from them, his irons did not get the results on the course he/they expected. Went back in, refitted, reshafted, loft, lie adjustments. His cost $0.00.

I think this aspect has been overlooked.  This is exactly what the shop I work for does as well.  You have 7 rounds to play with your clubs, if you don't love them, come back in and we will figure it out.  Worse case scenario, you get your money back in full.  Try doing that any other golf retail store, it isn't going to happen.  Further, the build is done exactly like the demo so there is no discrepancy between what you were trying and what you receive.  

For some it's worth the extra cost for that piece of mind.  For others, it isn't.  You can also ask CC if they can order you OEM clubs that are a close match to the one that worked.  We do that often, but we tell them customers that you forgo the guarantee as we didn't physically build it so we can't be certain what they did.
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#25 reider69

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 07:17 AM

Between WRX, online retailers and Ebay you should be able to find most any component.  Find a local club guy you trust and have him build the club for you.  My club guy was trained in England and has been working on clubs for 30 years and is cheap! I guarantee the guy at Club Champion doesn't have his level of experience or skill.  Save yourself a ton of cash and buy more clubs you don't need with it!!

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#26 JCAG

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 01:49 PM

I do not see golf chat, club tinkerers as customers for any upmarket (read expensive) fitting studio. Also many confuse fitting and building. A well trained monkey can built a golf club. Few can properly master the art of fitting. Nowhere, except in an upmarket fitting studio, will you find the massive selection of head and shaft combos to best fit you especially not in some tinkerers garage nor cellar nor on a crab grass driving range.

The sweet taste of a low price is quickly replaced by the bitter taste of poor performance.

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#27 golfheaven69

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 06:36 PM

Doubt their business model has them around in a few more years. I went once and enjoyed the process. Pricing isn’t suited for 95% of the golfing universe.

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#28 phatchrisrules

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 07:26 PM

View PostJCAG, on 13 June 2018 - 01:49 PM, said:

I do not see golf chat, club tinkerers as customers for any upmarket (read expensive) fitting studio. Also many confuse fitting and building. A well trained monkey can built a golf club. Few can properly master the art of fitting. Nowhere, except in an upmarket fitting studio, will you find the massive selection of head and shaft combos to best fit you especially not in some tinkerers garage nor cellar nor on a crab grass driving range.

The sweet taste of a low price is quickly replaced by the bitter taste of poor performance.

Exactly.  I made it work when I worked at a Big Box store, but now that I work at a fitting studio, in the 2 months I've worked here I've already seen more massive distance and accuracy gains than I did in basically all my years fitting with OEM fit carts.  I mean 10 yards is standard in a GG or PGASS or whatever, but try some ridiculous increases like upwards of 40 yards of carry on a driver or 10 yards on an iron at the same loft.  It's truly amazing what the proper head and shaft combination can do when they gel with a person's swing.
Callaway Rogue SZ 9* - Diamana BF 60
Callaway Rogue SZ 13.5* - Fubuki V-Series 70
Callaway Rogue SZ 18* - Diamana Thump 85
Ping G700 4 - Fujikura Atmos Black 95
Ping G700 5 - Accra 105CWT "Master's Green"
Ping i500 6-PW - Accra 105CWT "Master's Green" (Most likely as it looks awesome)
Ping Glide 2.0 Stealth 50/SS, 54/ES, 58/ES - Modus 105 Wedge Master's Green
Bettinardi Inovai 3.0 Centre Shaft

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