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Playing Hickory Golf


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#571 Kirasdad

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Posted Yesterday, 02:19 PM

View Postgvogel, on 17 September 2014 - 08:10 AM, said:

So, as of Fall 2014, what models of golf balls are we hickory players using?

I have been playing B330RX and Titleist NXT Tour S, and occasionally a ProV1.  I am not sure which I prefer.

I go back and forth between the Wilson Duo, and Callaway Supersoft. Both feel good off the club and are quite inexpensive to boot. I don't worry about spin since it just doesn't come into play much in the hickory game. You are playing, for the most part urethane spin balls which i have tried and just don't see any advantage, and the Pro V1 in particular, just doesn't feel right coming off the club (too hard). I like the NXT S, but the extra dough doesn't seem worth it. This is just me and my game obviously. Getting back to your earlier post about Randy Jensen and not changing anything, I do think it's a mistake if one is playing hickory for most of one's golf to go back and forth between a ProV1 and a Wilson Duo. They are very different feeling balls and that would definitely be a big adjustment in the short game, which is where you score, in hickory especially, since most don't hit as many greens as in modern golf.

Then there is the MacIntyre-White mesh ball, and others like it, the Victor et al, which, if I was was king of the universe, everyone would play in tournaments. i have never understood playing 90 year old clubs, or reproductions scrupulously based on 1920's designs and patents and using a Titleist? For casual play, sure, it's convenient, but for especially the big tournaments, the USHO, MId Pines, The Southern 4 Ball and so on, let's use the period ball. I mean, shouldn't we be as accurate in our ball as we are in our pants? The entry fee is hefty and i get a bottle of boubon, a shirt, tie and what not. I think it would be money much better spent to give everyone a dozen mesh balls and get rid of the rest of the stuff, which goes into my closet never to reappear, and i don't drink bourbon. I am never wearing the tie. I'm not a Rockefeller Republican and I don't belong to Bushwood CC. Let's spend the dough on the period ball. I have brought this up with several of the powers that be, and have gotten a lot of hemming and hawing ending with one guy saying that the ball "gets too dirty". Oh brother. That's why we have ball washers. What do you think would happen if someone showed up at the NHC at Oakhurst and someone pulled out a Titleist? it wouldn't go over very well. "Modern" hickory should be the same, in my humble opinion.


My (unintentional) rant of the month.

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#572 Woodridge

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Posted Yesterday, 06:06 PM

View PostKirasdad, on 17 September 2014 - 02:19 PM, said:

View Postgvogel, on 17 September 2014 - 08:10 AM, said:

So, as of Fall 2014, what models of golf balls are we hickory players using?

I have been playing B330RX and Titleist NXT Tour S, and occasionally a ProV1.  I am not sure which I prefer.

I go back and forth between the Wilson Duo, and Callaway Supersoft. Both feel good off the club and are quite inexpensive to boot. I don't worry about spin since it just doesn't come into play much in the hickory game. You are playing, for the most part urethane spin balls which i have tried and just don't see any advantage, and the Pro V1 in particular, just doesn't feel right coming off the club (too hard). I like the NXT S, but the extra dough doesn't seem worth it. This is just me and my game obviously. Getting back to your earlier post about Randy Jensen and not changing anything, I do think it's a mistake if one is playing hickory for most of one's golf to go back and forth between a ProV1 and a Wilson Duo. They are very different feeling balls and that would definitely be a big adjustment in the short game, which is where you score, in hickory especially, since most don't hit as many greens as in modern golf.

Then there is the MacIntyre-White mesh ball, and others like it, the Victor et al, which, if I was was king of the universe, everyone would play in tournaments. i have never understood playing 90 year old clubs, or reproductions scrupulously based on 1920's designs and patents and using a Titleist? For casual play, sure, it's convenient, but for especially the big tournaments, the USHO, MId Pines, The Southern 4 Ball and so on, let's use the period ball. I mean, shouldn't we be as accurate in our ball as we are in our pants? The entry fee is hefty and i get a bottle of boubon, a shirt, tie and what not. I think it would be money much better spent to give everyone a dozen mesh balls and get rid of the rest of the stuff, which goes into my closet never to reappear, and i don't drink bourbon. I am never wearing the tie. I'm not a Rockefeller Republican and I don't belong to Bushwood CC. Let's spend the dough on the period ball. I have brought this up with several of the powers that be, and have gotten a lot of hemming and hawing ending with one guy saying that the ball "gets too dirty". Oh brother. That's why we have ball washers. What do you think would happen if someone showed up at the NHC at Oakhurst and someone pulled out a Titleist? it wouldn't go over very well. "Modern" hickory should be the same, in my humble opinion.


My (unintentional) rant of the month.

Love it. This has become my favorite corner of our sub forum to hang and listen. Something very pure happening in this thread. I'm slowly being seduced by the idea of hickory golf which is a concern considering all the other things I have going. Maybe I'll dive in down the line. But, for now, I think I'll order another beverage and enjoy the conversations.
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#573 majic

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Posted Yesterday, 09:04 PM

The use of the McIntyre ball or at the NHC the "Oakhurst" ball is truly up to the tournament chairman.
Both balls have their following. Both balls cause many discussions.
Most hickory golf is played in the pre 1935 division so I will address that era.
The player of in the 20's or 30's played balls with small dimples, different sizes, different weights and mostly under no controls by the R&A and USGA . A ball was picked for the hole conditions. The mesh ball was long gone. Jones won the slam with the small dimple ball.
The pre 1935 golfer today is not playing a reenactment event. He is playing hickory golf and almost all of that is non tournament. He uses the best clubs in his arsenal. Oldies refurbished or reproductions or a combination. High tech shoes, gloves, clothing, tees and yes the ball of his choice.
My tournament has and will continue to allow the player to pick his ball of choice just like he would have in 1930. I have given balls for players to try including the square mesh and the small dimple when I made these. The players have spoken on this issue and it is clear. They want to pick the ball they like to use.


#574 Bella Woods

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Posted Today, 06:41 AM

View Postmajic, on 17 September 2014 - 09:04 PM, said:

The use of the McIntyre ball or at the NHC the "Oakhurst" ball is truly up to the tournament chairman.
Both balls have their following. Both balls cause many discussions.
Most hickory golf is played in the pre 1935 division so I will address that era.
The player of in the 20's or 30's played balls with small dimples, different sizes, different weights and mostly under no controls by the R&A and USGA . A ball was picked for the hole conditions. The mesh ball was long gone. Jones won the slam with the small dimple ball.
The pre 1935 golfer today is not playing a reenactment event. He is playing hickory golf and almost all of that is non tournament. He uses the best clubs in his arsenal. Oldies refurbished or reproductions or a combination. High tech shoes, gloves, clothing, tees and yes the ball of his choice.
My tournament has and will continue to allow the player to pick his ball of choice just like he would have in 1930. I have given balls for players to try including the square mesh and the small dimple when I made these. The players have spoken on this issue and it is clear. They want to pick the ball they like to use.

Well said Tad.

I have read that some of the pros (like Bobby Jones) were so well connected that they could basically special order the specs
of their golf balls - like weight, size etc. Quite an advantage over the average Joe.

#575 gvogel

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Posted Today, 09:48 AM

My recollection is that the square dimpled Victor ball is a remolded Precept Laddie.  Might as well just play with a Precept Laddie - the square dimples ARE difficult to clean!

By the way, that is the ball that is played in Mike Steven's Pro tournament.

On this topic I agree with Tad - any USGA approved ball is OK.

I guess I'll stick with the B330RX or NXT Tour, but I might try a Speed Regime just for fun.  I agree that the Pro V1 feels too hard off the driver.

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#576 Kirasdad

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Posted Today, 10:18 AM

I too believe it's ok to use any USGA approved ball for hickory, they are much easier to come by for one thing, just walk into a store, but I think it also would be neat, and in the spirit of the thing, to have al least one major tournament use a period ball. Mac,Dave Brown or Tad, I'm sure could come up with a dimpled design if need be. It's cool that Mike's uses a period ball for his event.

I have always thought it's a little ironic when somebody shows up in shorts, golf shirt and a visor (which I have no problem with personally, the more the merrier) and guys say "hey, where's your plus fours" while at the same time they are using a ProV1.
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#577 hollabachgt

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Posted Today, 10:42 AM

I've been one of the more vocal players against the "period correct" golf ball. While I love the idea of an accurate reproduction ball I don' feel the Victor, Ouiment, or RTJ are period correct in anything more than their look. In my experience the balls performance does not seem to match what was written about golf balls 90 years ago, specifically in their cover softness and spin. But this is the problem with the modern day marketplace for golf balls. There really isn't anything on the market that seems to play like a ball from the hickory era would play. This is why any hickory discussion always eventually turns to what golf ball are you playing as we're all searching for the ball that feels and performs the closest. Both of the balls used to make the Victor(Wilson Duo) and Ouiment/RTJ(Wilson 50 Elite) are good hickory balls, but fail to give me that period correct performance and until that time I don't plan on using them outisde of tournaments where they are mandated.

I often make the analogy that hickory golf is much like vintage motor racing and our tire is the golf ball. The big difference is their tires are as accurate as safety permits and our golf balls are as accurate as cost permits.

#578 stixman

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Posted Today, 10:54 AM

IMO, the closest you can get is to use the wound Dunlop 65. It's a rubber core ball constructed on the same principle as the Haskell, just a lot more refined with better QC. They do not seem to degrade like other wound balls are reported to.
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#579 Blade Junkie

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Posted Today, 11:02 AM

View Postteevons, on 17 September 2014 - 12:39 AM, said:

My biggest issue with playing hickories are the grips. I really feel if I am going to get serious about playing them the grips are a huge issue for me. Skinny, slippery etc. I can get used to the ball flight, distance but also the shaft thickness on them is different

Do all you experienced Hickory players feel the same way.?? That is once you find the club you like you put matching grip styles on them, make them consistent as far as length, and thickness??

I did have a Forgan Niblick that had no grip at all when I bought it - just bare wood. Great club. Better feel than a Vokey. Having said that, I did end up getting it re-gripped, which is what I generally do with any club I intend to play with (i.e. all of them :) )

My hickory grip of choice is also suede out. As of the last 4 rounds I am now gloveless as well.


View Postgvogel, on 17 September 2014 - 08:10 AM, said:

So, as of Fall 2014, what models of golf balls are we hickory players using?

I have been playing B330RX and Titleist NXT Tour S, and occasionally a ProV1.  I am not sure which I prefer.

I generally alternate between three balls for hickory play:
  • Srixon Soft Feel
  • Wilson DX2 (I think this is the Duo in the USA)
  • Callaway Supersoft
No real preference between the three. They all go well, and all feel great around the green and when putting. If anything, i find I get a little less "stop" from the Supersoft, which is probably the longest. My scores are pretty much the same with any ball mind you.

I've used the McIntyre ball and liked it. First round of the WHO last year it was the mandatory ball. It was also the ball that ended up in the cup when I had my first Ace :)

Never understood the fuss about Pro VIs. Horrible clicky feel when putting puts me right off them!

View Posthollabachgt, on 17 September 2014 - 02:19 PM, said:

[
I need to do a comparison between the RX and RXS to see which will be best for Scotland in a couple weeks.

hollabachgt, are you going over for the World Hickory Open ?
'Tis the hickory season ...
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#580 Blade Junkie

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Posted Today, 11:06 AM

View Poststixman, on 18 September 2014 - 10:54 AM, said:

IMO, the closest you can get is to use the wound Dunlop 65. It's a rubber core ball constructed on the same principle as the Haskell, just a lot more refined with better QC. They do not seem to degrade like other wound balls are reported to.

And still fairly freely available on eBay for a reasonable price !

Had a persimmon/blades game with Christian McMillan recently and we used a 65 for the back nine and had great fun. Nice feeling to take one out of the wrapper for the first time :)

'Tis the hickory season ...
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#581 hollabachgt

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Posted Today, 11:32 AM

View PostBlade Junkie, on 18 September 2014 - 11:02 AM, said:

hollabachgt, are you going over for the World Hickory Open ?

Yes, I'll be part of the American contingent coming over for the WHO and International Cup.

#582 Blade Junkie

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Posted 40 minutes ago

View Posthollabachgt, on 18 September 2014 - 11:32 AM, said:

View PostBlade Junkie, on 18 September 2014 - 11:02 AM, said:

hollabachgt, are you going over for the World Hickory Open ?

Yes, I'll be part of the American contingent coming over for the WHO and International Cup.

Oh well done ! See you up there for a pint then :)
'Tis the hickory season ...
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W.Jeffery Bulldog; Tom Stewart irons:
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Mashie, Lofter, Spade Mashie, M.Niblick
Niblick, Nicoll Howitzer, Eskitt putter

#583 stixman

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Posted 29 minutes ago

Where are you staying?
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Apex II,or 1968 Dynas, or Nicoll Cottons
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1935 Wilson R90, real deal
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#584 Blade Junkie

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Posted 11 minutes ago

View Poststixman, on 18 September 2014 - 12:15 PM, said:

Where are you staying?

Carnoustie Golf Hotel ! You playing this year Chris ?
'Tis the hickory season ...
Geo Duncan Driver, Brassie
W.Jeffery Bulldog; Tom Stewart irons:
Cleek, Dr. Mashie, Mashie Iron, Jigger
Mashie, Lofter, Spade Mashie, M.Niblick
Niblick, Nicoll Howitzer, Eskitt putter




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