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ChiefMikeOfficer

 
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Everything posted by ChiefMikeOfficer

  1. Yea it's just a little experiment to do alongside the kid, not actually converting or anything -- kinda like those old videos of Phil swinging right handed. Spent slightly more than I wanted on the driver, but compared to the age/condition I could get for $40 less, it was hard to pass up.
  2. Latest update on my quest to learn left handed alongside the (almost) 3 year old: Picked up a set of the smallest LH Tour Edge clubs for his 3rd birthday later this month - still bitter we can't use hand me downs, but that just means I get to buy more clubs! And then for me, filled out "enough" of the bag to learn, and kept it to very reasonable prices: From GlobalGolf, this Cobra driver that was advertised as "excellent used" but came still shrink wrapped with original stickers (looks like it was hit a few times with the plastic still on it, but not enough to mark the club): Then grabbed a new demo iron from Tour Edge for $52 shipped - but as I was writing this, realized they sent the wrong one (following up, but this one will probably still do the trick - it was supposed to be the C, not the E iron wood): And, I don't think I posted this back when I got it, but picked up a putter for dirt cheap off of Callaway PreOwned:
  3. I'm gonna go with: playing with someone new, and they keep chatting up how they usually play so much better and don't know why they're playing so poorly. I was that guy once. Really, as long as you're enjoying it, staying respectful, and keeping up with pace, nobody cares what you shoot - one simple "I'm off today" is fine, but lamenting over every hole or shot gets very old very quickly. 2nd place, related to slow play: trying to keep up with the group by playing tees that are too far back for their game. I usually try to prevent this by asking first, and just playing UP with the group instead of back where I normally play (although I do set a minimum - I'll go back if they're playing a few sets up).
  4. Well, the newest addition to my T200 Utility collection showed up today. Picked up a '23 T200 2-iron (17 deg) to use alongside the '21 3-4 irons - thought is to replace the '21 U505 1 iron (16 deg) because I've just been liking the 200 better, but might just end up with options. Same Tour AD-IZ 95x shaft as the others, and opted for the almost-matching Iomic Sticky grip to start. Included some side-by-sides to show the differences. And top to bottom 1-3 (new one is in the middle):
  5. They're Hybrid -- look specifically for the Ventus HB: https://fujikuragolf.com/hybrids/ventus-hybrid?v=f24485ae434a I was gonna say I don't know anything about the tips to fit your specific club, but that link addresses it (specifically calls out something for club builders to fit it into long irons -- I only do grips, leave the real building up to the professionals). What's fun about finding this latest link...Titleist's upcharge is $225, but MSRP is only $200 (others don't have that same price discrepancy, like the Graphite Designs I use in my long irons are MSRP $290, Titleist upcharge $130 -- it's a wild pricing game across this industry). Now...why did I know so quickly that Titleist had this option?? Maybe you'll find out tonight what's waiting on my doorstep right now (preview: it's not a Ventus, but I did see it along the way).
  6. Titleist offers both Ventus Blue and Black for their Utility build irons, so that likely means you have options in the after market. Looks like Mizuno lists a couple Blues on their site too. Titleist: Mizuno:
  7. Decided to go against the grain and try some "fun" grips to start the year. The left 6 are from RipIt (an Australian brand), and the last 3 from Guilty Golf. Obviously they're not on the clubs yet, but initial impression says: RipIt are top notch, Guilty are just OK. I'll most likely get more RipIts or maybe a few from another brand to complete the set before the season starts. Stay tuned -- should have a couple more fun purchases coming this week or next.
  8. Between all of my fantasy leagues this year, even with taking some "risks" thinking it could be a breakout week, I have a single missed cut this week (I do have Wu in one of them). That cut is...Detry in this league, who I thought was an absolute lock. Wasn't even close.
  9. 1. Like a couple of the first responses -- if it fits you, go for it. The performance usually doesn't change that much from year to year, so 1-2 years old is not going to be that noticeable (if at all -- note that some tour players recently benched one of the TM Stealth models for an older SIM model). But also, make sure it's a reputable source -- there is some risk of counterfeit depending on source, especially if the price feels too good to be true (in other words, don't do too much bargain hunting). Callaway Pre-owned, Global Golf (which took over TaylorMade Pre-owned), etc. are often sources where you know they're authentic. 2. Not really. Just make sure it was treated well. Watch for dings directly on the face of putters and groove wear on irons. Look at detailed pics of the face, if available, to see if there's a notable wear pattern. "Mint" or "Excellent" shouldn't have any issue, if it's assessed appropriately. 2a. Especially watch out for wedges. You don't want to buy wedges with much wear on the face. I think lightly used is still OK, but performance will degrade faster than other clubs.
  10. Some reports are saying Cantlay was fighting a similar illness on Sunday too, which contributed to the struggles.
  11. Lol I swapped out Cantlay at the last minute. But for Zalatoris, so I'm mostly OK with where it stands now. I really struggle to pick and cheer for Cantlay -- he's like the Nickelback of the PGA Tour.
  12. Based on your profile, you're a 4 with 110+ swing speed? I'm making some assumptions based on those stats, but if that's accurate, find a place that can demo the Titleist T200 Utility build. They are more like a regular iron, but with some heat. Try either a 2 or 3 iron for "driving" -- I have both a 3 and 4 in that model, alongside a U505 1-iron (all the 2021 models though), and if I went back and did it again, I'd get the T200 2-iron over the U505 1-iron (nothing against the U505, just like the T200 better and use the 3i off the tee more than the 1i -- might actually make that swap this year ). That's not a recommendation to buy, because they definitely aren't for everyone -- but based on my experience with these, if you like a slightly smaller profile on the driving iron and are a solid striker (again, assumed from 4 / 110+), I'd recommend trying these before pulling the trigger on something else. I've also had a Srixon 2i, which was solid and fairly easy to hit (and bigger too), but fell well short of the Titleist models (T200 3i flies like 20y further than the Srixon 2i that I had). I've also hit a friend's PXG 1i quite a few times -- wouldn't recommend it.
  13. Only played it once, and we had some later afternoon rounds (I was in group 2 of 3) -- great experience, but the course layout makes it a little annoying at the end (from what I remember, coming down 16 was blinding, but back up 18 was super cool). While my group was finishing up, some of the end of day stuff was starting, including bagpipes coming out next to to the green (not sure if that's an everyday thing or if it was a special event that day). If you're finishing late, better have your A-game, because the sunset attracts a crowd -- this is our final group finishing on 18 green, with the crowd just starting to form: If I ever make it back there, I'd probably try to walk it -- we had carts with forecaddies, which was great for some of the elevation changes, but there's something about walking a course like that...
  14. That's a must play - easily one of my favorite courses, definitely worth the price (peak season gets a bit steep, but the price is solid relative to comparable courses).
  15. Either 2000 or 2001, $125, Shenendoah at Turning Stone Casino. FWIW, I was 16, and my dad paid, but I remember it being a big deal (also might be slightly off on their opening rates). At that time, it was unheard of to pay $100+ for a public round in our area -- I'm pretty sure I paid $150 that same year for a full summer under-18 "membership" at one of our local tracks, and nearly all public courses were in the $10-25 range (walking), some even less (definitely remember playing $9 rounds at some places). Then, this gem opened about 20 minutes west of us, and I'm pretty sure they started at $125. Played it once at that rate, then started finding ways to play it cheaper (e.g. a popular Central New York public golf calendar came with a discount card, and Turning Stone courses were on the list for $60/round, but limited to 2x/year).
  16. "You're not good enough to get mad" - sophomore or junior year, a college teammate said that to me during a practice round when I was ready to smash my bag with an iron. I hated it in the moment, but he was right - I thought I was better than I was, and had no perspective on how good the really good players actually are. That quote stuck with me over time and was a turning point for me, which led to me enjoying the game a lot more for the last ~15 years. And...I also got better - my handicap has been consistently lower over those years, despite not practicing or playing nearly as much (I had flashier rounds back then, but very streaky). It's easy to forget some key things when working toward improvement, especially that potential and production are very different. At the time of this quote, I was about a 5 handicap, rebuilding from what's still probably my worst year of playing since I was 13 (multiple bouts with the shanks, still pulled enough rounds together to keep it to a 5, but 71 and 95 were both in play at the start of any round). I got so wrapped up in my "potential" to hit great shots and shoot good scores (because I had seen myself do it so many times) that I lost sight of how frequently I should expect to hit a good one, and also started to think "reasonable" shots were actually "bad" -- if I missed a green or hit an errant tee shot, it led to anger, both because I knew I could do better, and it meant I had to grind; every question of "how'd you play?" had me saying "terrible", because I had unreasonable expectations for my own skill level. I got lost in thinking I should be better than I was, not accepting faults, and was not having any fun at the time (and, in many rounds, I was no fun to play with either). That's not to say you should just brush off shots/scores as "I'm not good enough", and it doesn't mean I never get angry over individual shots - it's just a reminder to stay grounded. If you're not putting in multiple hours a day and spending thousands of dollars on lessons, it's OK to scrape it around a bit, and once I started accepting that in the moment, the game became fun again. My tendency now is to laugh off bad shots rather than be tempted to smash something, and if I go out and shoot 85, I no longer beat myself up over it - instead, I just think about what I should practice next, and aim to play better next time (and if I don't, just repeat the thought process).
  17. Definitely bounce between brands a lot during the season, and have a giant stockpile across brands in the basement, but the three top balls this year will probably be: Titleist ProV1x Left Dash - typically my top choice, but because of cost and availability, tend to use them only around tournament time (1-2 weeks before plus the actual tournament). Just picked up a couple more dozen now that they are available again. Vice Pro Plus variants - love the Shade and Drip patterns, so those are top choices for everyday / casual play. TaylorMade TP5(x?) PIX Limited Edition(s) - scooped up a handful of these releases, which finally look like they're being released with a TP5x option on a regular basis (last year it was mostly TP5 only). Just this morning I bought a dozen of the Dragon TP5x.
  18. Considering the direct question on a 52*, I think there are two big factors beyond what you intend to use it for: what iron set are you looking at (or at least what type of iron set), and what lofts do you plan to have above 52 in your bag? If the iron set you're going to get has a hot face (like Super Game Improvement, or maybe even a Players Distance) and you generally have good contact with your wedges, I'd probably lean toward the specialty wedge for more consistent distance and spin control; for a Players iron, could go either way, so it comes down to skill and precision (higher skill around green / inside 100 -> specialty; looking for forgiveness -> set). If you need to work on contact on short shots, set is probably best. But also, that iron type would factor into which specialty wedges to consider -- many of the Vokey wedges are less forgiving than some of the other specialty wedges out there, so if you're getting more forgiving irons, also consider a more forgiving specialty wedge. Then, what lofts... watch for distance gapping, and make sure you have a plan to account for it. Especially for SGI and PD irons, I'd expect a 52 to go farther than a specialty 52 (make sure to research lofts too -- what you assume is a 52 in the set might not be, depending on which set). With many of the irons these days, if you have any specialty wedges, you'll probably have a 20+ yard gap somewhere, so where do you want it? Between the GW and SW, or between the PW and GW? (in other words, would you feel more confident taking a 3/4 swing with a PW, or a 3/4 swing with a GW?) I switched out my PW for a Vokey 46 last year -- I do like the 46, but also might go back, because I now have a big gap between the 9i and PW that's been tough to account for (and I don't use the 46 a lot around the green, either). I think my favorite setup was the set PW with 50-54-58 as the specialty wedges, and might adjust the long end of my bag this year to get back to that.
  19. Someone liked my old post, so had to go back and check it for accuracy -- still stand by the New Balance recommendation for walking, but there's a new leader in the clubhouse: Olukai. They're phenomenal. When I initially looked at them, I was worried about the support because of some of their non traditional features, but that has not been an issue in any way. I now have them in 4 different style/color combinations.
  20. Sorry - the cold hit here in Madison, so haven't been on the course since that last post. But, we're in a mini heatwave, so we got out for 9 today -- did not hit any of the same issues with bad distances, and I think it was only like two times in the first 36 holes (but again, not like it was giving bad reads that went unnoticed, they were very clearly off). I'm still getting used to toggling the settings and everything, but it's a positive experience. One kinda cool feature is that there's a screen on the side that clearly shows which mode it's in and displays the actual distance readings, so you can see all of the info outside of the scope (so, grab a reading, pull it down, and can actually show the group). I keep thinking I'm going to miss the GPS function of my Bushnell Hybrid, but then again, I get all of those features and more on my watch today, so there's really no need to have it directly on the rangefinder. And in the spirit of this group...I also added a green silicone cover to the Cube, which looks pretty slick. Meant to grab a picture on the course, but forgot again, so you'll have to deal with the stock photo:
  21. Easily my favorite course in Madison -- short, but great, and I prefer it to some of the newer, "bigger" layouts around the city. Only played it once though (have a friend that's a fairly new member though, so hopefully will change that soon). Nakoma is typically my trigger for signing up for a City Am qualifier -- if it's in the rotation, I sign up every time. Unfortunately last time was mid-COVID and Nakoma backed out at the last second, but that round got relocated to the surprisingly nice (and challenging) Lake Wisconsin CC (my first time playing that public, very affordable track) -- the front 9 there feels like a hidden gem; the back 9 feels...gimmicky, and like they ran out of space (but still a few cool holes).
  22. My dad used one of these when my brother and I were in high school -- we hit it on occasion and stole it for some tournaments, because it was so easy to hit. I still have one of the Warbird 7 woods in the basement stockpile, but from looking at it a while ago, looks like the gen before the official Heavenwood, even though it has the Heavenwood cover (I'm questioning whether he had multiples and just kept the prior gen...).
  23. Been a bit since I've posted here and definitely missed reporting a handful of purchases... But here's the latest: Picked up the Caddytalk Cube, used 2 rounds so far. Super cool. The triangulation is surprisingly useful and accurate (checked it against my buddy's Bushnell a few times, and it was accurate within a yard, even accounting for slope). On regular readings, had some duds though - like a 100+ yd shot reading at 8yd (not the "you just missed the flag" issues, actual misreads, and by a lot), but they were noticeable, and a couple reads later were much better. Overall happy with the early performance. Then, added a couple more Putt Buddies divot tool/ball mark combos to the collection, this time going with Dr Evil / Mini Me and Phil / Darth Vader. They're a bit bulky, but cool designs (also have a Chubbs and a Spackler). And, last thing for now... Reef Spackler golf flippy floppies (with soft spikes and all) -- who knows when I'll ever use them, especially considering they clearly lack support, but they look way cooler than the old FJ sandals that I used to have (maybe they'll be the new par 3 go-to shoes). What's next for this club ho? I'm eyeing up a legit LAB putter fitting this winter - seems like that would make a huge difference for me. And then what's tempting but completely unrealistic for the current situation? A Finn Golf Scooter - after riding one a couple weeks ago, I never want to go back to a traditional cart. But for it to make sense, would need to join our neighborhood course, and that's not currently in the cards.
  24. That flag print is -- I ordered a set the last time they offered it as a limited edition add-on (SM7 I think)
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