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Bridgestone Test Drive Program


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So how does anyone know what shafts and specs to order in the first place?

This is the elephant in the room that Bridgestone have clearly overlooked. Just about every golfer I know thinks they know what they should be playing, but in reality there is often a gulf between their aspirations and their ability. Cue the hapless individual ordering an ill-fitting X-flex shaft because he doesn't want to look silly against the other guys on the 1st tee.

Other than incidental sales that may arise from such a frankly lazy approach to custom fittings from Bridgestone, I can't see any benefit whatsoever. I've said it before, but there are no short cuts to custom fitting - and you will only receive a level of fitting comparative to the amount of effort you are willing to put in yourself. If that means guessing by mail order, then expect something equally as vague in return.

If you subsequently have to have lofts and lies tweaked and shafts swapped out with different flexes and lengths and weights - then what was the point of ordering anything in the post in the first place?

Quite simply, you may as well have gone to your fitter in the first place - duh. 

Nice try Bridgestone, but this makes as much sense as your ball fitting program - which is none to anybody with a small amount of common sense.

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Jas I don't disagree with your comment but I don't believe that bridgestones point is to send you a set of irons that are perfectly fit. It's to let you try this particular set of irons as if you were at a demo day only for an extended period and with all the irons. If along the way you wanted to have the lies tweaked to your specs, go ahead.

 

Most people will request what they are currently using in regards to shaf flex so at least it will be somewhat of an apples to apples comparison.

 

This just made me think of a fitting question that I will ask in a separate thread.

Taylor Made Sim2  10.5 (Opened 1 click) Ventus Blue 5  R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood  Alta 65 R flex

Wilson D7 forged 6-GW -  Mamiya recoil 460 R flex

Edison Wedges 54 and 59 KBS Tour Graphite 80's

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

Tour Exotics 3 wood is in the bag because we are allowed 14 clubs.  It's a great club for pulling balls out of the water or from bushes - you never want to put your hand into anything in Florida unless you are absolutely certain that it's safe.  There are rare wind conditions when I might hit it off the tee on a few holes that I play.  

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Granted, this is more of a demo program rather than a fitting program. 

Maybe this is a result of Bridgestone struggling to find their way into proshop accounts - send them by post instead to connect to the consumer.

Oddly enough, having visited the Bridgestone website it looks like most of the more popular combos are booked out and awaiting return, so clearly some have took Bridgestone up on their offer. The downside is the most popular combos are usually booked out awaiting return - a self-perpetuating problem perhaps.

Either way, I still find it a rather cynical slap dash way to promote a brand and connect it to new customers. Those who take it up are probably the greater percentage of golfers anyway who can't be bothered to seek proper consultation and fitting (and demo) of new clubs at a professional location.

But in a world that likes internet shopping and drive-thru convenience it doesn't surprise me in the least.

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What percentage of golfers actually DO get fit for their clubs?  After all, there are a lot of boutique brands that are almost exclusively available online and almost every OEM has some kind of "online fitting" section on their website.  Nobody gets fit for the clubs they buy on eBay.  What percentage of "fitters" in big box stores are really knowledgeable enough to be considered professional fitters?

 

There's certainly more awareness and interest in club fitting than there was a few years ago, but I suspect the average golfer still purchases their clubs based more on advertising and what's on "The Hot List" than through a truly professional fitting.

 

Just the fact Bridgestone will get their clubs into the hands of some people that might not otherwise have a chance to demo their clubs, will probably pay off for them.  Anyone that has the clubs to demo will likely let their friends hit them, more people will become aware of the brand, some people will start asking their local shops about them, good PR, etc.

 

Their ball fitting program actually does make a lot of sense, to Bridgestone anyway, since it got a lot more people to start playing their brand (whether it's actually the best ball for them to play, is another matter entirely).

What's In The Bag

Driver :titelist-small:

Titleist 913 D2 10.5* (set to 9.75* / Neutral) 46" Paderson KINETIXX Kevlar Green - R

Fairway Wood

Tom Wishon 949 MC 16.5* Fujikura Speeder 569-A

Hybrid  :cleveland-small: Hibore 22* Aldila VS Proto Blue

Irons  :ping-small: G series 5-P

Wedges :ping-small:Glide 54* SS / 60* TS - SCOR 53*

Putter     :nike-small: Nike Method 001 / P2 Reflex grip 35"

Ball

Master Grip Tour C4

Bag

Datrek DG Lite  

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What has got everyone so pissy about this idea? Do you ever demo a club in person that has been perfectly fit for you? That's all this is. A different way to demo them. And they're letting you demo a set for three weeks, not one club in a hitting bay for a few minutes.

 

Why does everyone have to bash it like it's a bad idea or something? If you're not interested, don't participate. If enough people don't don't participate, they may not continue the program, or maybe they will. It would certainly be a good good way get to people who don't live near a store or fitter. Either way it's just another option out there. Options are good. Geez, nothing to get worked up over.

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I've always liked their irons, but this is pretty blatantly a cost-saving measure on their part to skip the retail model.

You do too many things like this and people start to feel every cent is measured for profit. That's kind of the way the biz has been going for a while, and peoples' reactions to such practices will be mixed. Considering the global Bstone fortune, it feels cheap on their part.

 

Don't call people "pissy" for having well-formed opinions. That is unfair.

"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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I've always liked their irons, but this is pretty blatantly a cost-saving measure on their part to skip the retail model.

You do too many things like this and people start to feel every cent is measured for profit. That's kind of the way the biz has been going for a while, and peoples' reactions to such practices will be mixed. Considering the global Bstone fortune, it feels cheap on their part.

 

Don't call people "pissy" for having well-formed opinions. That is unfair.

How many people will actually utilize the program though? I buy more than my fair share of golf equipment including owning a set of Bridgestone irons and I never knew this was even available. It doesn't seem like they are saving much money to the consumer if only a small percentage of their sales are done this way. Wouldn't you think it would be less than 5%? I'm seriously guessing here but I spend a lot of time looking at golf equipment and never knew this was available until a few days ago.
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Driver- Tmag 2017 M2 tour issue 8.5* actual loft 7.8* w/ Diamana Ahina 80X 44"
Fairway Metal- Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 3W 13* w/ Matrix 7m4 X 42.5"

Utility- Mizuno MPH5 1 iron w/ Aldila RIP 85X (depending on course/ conditions)

Irons- Mizuno MP-18 FLI HI 3i and 4i w/ KBS C-taper lite X
          Mizuno MP59 5i and 6I w/ PX 6.5

          Mizuno MP69 7i-PW w/ PX 6.5

Wedges- Scratch 8620 Driver/Slider set.  50*, 56* bent to 55* w/ rifle spinner shafts

                and Titleist Vokey 60* M grind

Putter- Never Compromise Dinero Mogul
Ball- Bridgestone Tour B XS

Bag- Ogio Aquatech Cart Bag

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How many people will actually utilize the program though? I buy more than my fair share of golf equipment including owning a set of Bridgestone irons and I never knew this was even available. It doesn't seem like they are saving much money to the consumer if only a small percentage of their sales are done this way. Wouldn't you think it would be less than 5%? I'm seriously guessing here but I spend a lot of time looking at golf equipment and never knew this was available until a few days ago.

I'd never heard of it either, until I got the email about it.

 

I really don't know what their overall presence is in retail outlets, I can only recall seeing one set of their iron sets on display in my area and it's been on the wall for 2 years.

 

Frankly, for me to have the opportunity to demo their clubs this way, makes a lot of sense for me.  I'd love to have the opportunity to spend a couple of weeks with clubs I'm considering, and actually use them on courses I play.

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What's In The Bag

Driver :titelist-small:

Titleist 913 D2 10.5* (set to 9.75* / Neutral) 46" Paderson KINETIXX Kevlar Green - R

Fairway Wood

Tom Wishon 949 MC 16.5* Fujikura Speeder 569-A

Hybrid  :cleveland-small: Hibore 22* Aldila VS Proto Blue

Irons  :ping-small: G series 5-P

Wedges :ping-small:Glide 54* SS / 60* TS - SCOR 53*

Putter     :nike-small: Nike Method 001 / P2 Reflex grip 35"

Ball

Master Grip Tour C4

Bag

Datrek DG Lite  

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As always, read the terms.

http://testdrive.bridgestonegolf.com/corporate/terms

 

Your 21 day rental period starts the moment you click yourself through checkout. Shipping times back and forth are included. If your demos are not received by 5PM on the 21st day, you get charged the full hold amount on your card, which is nearly the cost of a full set of irons.

 

Then, if you have any disputes, you will be ironically using "JAMS, Inc." a mediation firm of their choosing to do battle with.

 

Caveat emptor. Holy s***. Pathetic.

 

Didn't notice any privacy terms outlined either. They get to sell your data, more than likely to make more money, given they have all your info after checkout.

 

Perusing some complaints over the years against "JAMS" and how they stack everything in the favor of their corporate partners with hand-picked arbitrators and contractual obligations to find in favor of their clients, you'd be well-served to avoid this.

"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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I'm sure they do that to cover their own asses. It's just like warranty's on clubs. They usually fix any problems I ever have no questions asked. Even though warranty shouldn't cover some things.

 

Maybe I'm wrong though. They could just be trying to screw people.

Driver- Tmag 2017 M2 tour issue 8.5* actual loft 7.8* w/ Diamana Ahina 80X 44"
Fairway Metal- Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 3W 13* w/ Matrix 7m4 X 42.5"

Utility- Mizuno MPH5 1 iron w/ Aldila RIP 85X (depending on course/ conditions)

Irons- Mizuno MP-18 FLI HI 3i and 4i w/ KBS C-taper lite X
          Mizuno MP59 5i and 6I w/ PX 6.5

          Mizuno MP69 7i-PW w/ PX 6.5

Wedges- Scratch 8620 Driver/Slider set.  50*, 56* bent to 55* w/ rifle spinner shafts

                and Titleist Vokey 60* M grind

Putter- Never Compromise Dinero Mogul
Ball- Bridgestone Tour B XS

Bag- Ogio Aquatech Cart Bag

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Entering into mandatory arbitrtion services like this automatically waives your traditional right to class action if they do screw people over. Do you want to waive all your rights? Because you have none under this program. Its why I call it complete s***.

 

And all arbitration actions are covered by confidentiality clause. So you'll never know if others are getting screwed.

"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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Well at least if one of us get screwed then the rest of us will know about it lol

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Driver- Tmag 2017 M2 tour issue 8.5* actual loft 7.8* w/ Diamana Ahina 80X 44"
Fairway Metal- Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 3W 13* w/ Matrix 7m4 X 42.5"

Utility- Mizuno MPH5 1 iron w/ Aldila RIP 85X (depending on course/ conditions)

Irons- Mizuno MP-18 FLI HI 3i and 4i w/ KBS C-taper lite X
          Mizuno MP59 5i and 6I w/ PX 6.5

          Mizuno MP69 7i-PW w/ PX 6.5

Wedges- Scratch 8620 Driver/Slider set.  50*, 56* bent to 55* w/ rifle spinner shafts

                and Titleist Vokey 60* M grind

Putter- Never Compromise Dinero Mogul
Ball- Bridgestone Tour B XS

Bag- Ogio Aquatech Cart Bag

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Wow, a chance to hit a set of clubs for free for 21 days, especially ones that are hard to find in stores.  What a nightmare!!!  :lol:  :lol:

You didn't read any of the terms, obviously. Its not a SET of golf clubs. Its two 7 irons and two 5 irons with two different shafts. A $700 hold on your CC is atrocious, as is not having any legal ground to stand on if anything goes wrong in the process.

21 days includes transit both ways. So that whittles down your window considerably. Cause I sure as heck wouldn't push the envelope there. And in that span of time, you have to get them adjusted on your own dime, with the outstanding caveat that they could declare them "damaged" as part of that process.

 

Sounds like a potential nightmare at minimum.

"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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You didn't read any of the terms, obviously. Its not a SET of golf clubs. Its two 7 irons and two 5 irons with two different shafts. A $700 hold on your CC is atrocious, as is not having any legal ground to stand on if anything goes wrong in the process.

21 days includes transit both ways. So that whittles down your window considerably. Cause I sure as heck wouldn't push the envelope there. And in that span of time, you have to get them adjusted on your own dime, with the outstanding caveat that they could declare them "damaged" as part of that process.

 

Sounds like a potential nightmare at minimum.

Just read through it, sir.  You are correct about it not being a full set, just a demo. 

 

Use it or don't use -- your decision. Others will no doubt make their own decision. Based on the demo sets that are out there, it would certainly seem that there are people who want to participate.  

 

Nightmare? I guess that depends on one's definition of "nightmare" and how well one can follow instructions. Clearly this isn't a program for you, but I'm sure others will make up their own minds. If you can live by the terms, great. If you can't, then don't do it. I don't have a problem with the credit card hold simply because they're sending you their clubs and would either like them back or paid for. Doesn't seem unreasonable - again, follow the instructions and you're fine. If you can't, then don't do it.  And as far as the CC charge, it's not $700, the charge is for the value of the clubs (now who's not reading  :rolleyes: ).

 

I'm not by nature a negative or a cynical person and I'll give Bridgestone credit for thinking outside the box and coming up with a program that's a little unique. If it works for them, great. If it doesn't, well that's great too.  

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What's in the bag:
 
Driver:  Sub 70 639D - 9.5; :cleveland-small: Launcher HB Turbo; :mizuno-small: ST 190 
FW Wood: :tour-edge: Tour Edge EXS 220 - 15*; :mizuno-small: ST 180 14*
Hybrids:  PXG 0311 22
Utility Irons: :wilson_staff_small: Staff Model Utilities 18, 21, 24*;  Lynx VT Stinger - 16*
Irons::wilson_staff_small: D7 Forged; :benhogan-small:PTx Pro, :macgregor-small: VIP 1025 V-Foil MB/CB; :wilson_staff_small: Progressives (circa 1993)

Wedges:  :cleveland-small: CBX -2, :benhogan-small:Riviera 52-56-60; :wilson_staff_small: Staff Model
Putter:   :edel-golf-1:  Willamette,  :bettinardi-small: BB8,  :benhogan-small:Baby Ben

Ball: :bridgestone-small: Tour B X (2020); :srixon-small: Z-STAR XV

Stat Tracker/GPS Watch: :ShotScope:


 
Follow @golfspybarbajo

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What has got everyone so pissy about this idea? Do you ever demo a club in person that has been perfectly fit for you? That's all this is. A different way to demo them. And they're letting you demo a set for three weeks, not one club in a hitting bay for a few minutes.

Here's the thing - at most "normal" demos you can decide whether or not you like a club within 5 or so swings. Sure it's not perfectly fit for you either, but at least you didn't pay postage for your curiosity and get stuck with it for 3 weeks.

If Bridgestone were really serious about getting their products in the hands of the golfing masses, then they really need to try something different than this lazy tactic which puts all the onus on the consumer. 

If anyone actually thinks Bridgestones marketing ploy makes any sense, then they really deserve it.

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Here's the thing - at most "normal" demos you can decide whether or not you like a club within 5 or so swings. Sure it's not perfectly fit for you either, but at least you didn't pay postage for your curiosity and get stuck with it for 3 weeks.

If Bridgestone were really serious about getting their products in the hands of the golfing masses, then they really need to try something different than this lazy tactic which puts all the onus on the consumer.

If anyone actually thinks Bridgestones marketing ploy makes any sense, then they really deserve it.

You don't pay anything from what I understand unless you keep the clubs. So no postage.

Driver- Tmag 2017 M2 tour issue 8.5* actual loft 7.8* w/ Diamana Ahina 80X 44"
Fairway Metal- Tour Edge Exotics XCG7 Beta 3W 13* w/ Matrix 7m4 X 42.5"

Utility- Mizuno MPH5 1 iron w/ Aldila RIP 85X (depending on course/ conditions)

Irons- Mizuno MP-18 FLI HI 3i and 4i w/ KBS C-taper lite X
          Mizuno MP59 5i and 6I w/ PX 6.5

          Mizuno MP69 7i-PW w/ PX 6.5

Wedges- Scratch 8620 Driver/Slider set.  50*, 56* bent to 55* w/ rifle spinner shafts

                and Titleist Vokey 60* M grind

Putter- Never Compromise Dinero Mogul
Ball- Bridgestone Tour B XS

Bag- Ogio Aquatech Cart Bag

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You don't pay anything from what I understand unless you keep the clubs. So no postage.

 

You pay postage in the first instance to have clubs delivered to your door. I'm not saying Bridgestone won't reimburse your postage fees if you opt to buy a club or set, but I'm pretty sure they're not going to pay the postage for the majority of people who simply want to try their clubs and then return them (postage paid). 

If Bridgestone were to pay for delivery cost to every conceivable consumer, then perhaps it would be nearly as cost effective to pay for genuine demo days where the lazy consumer could actually get off their own backside and find a golf course or range where they could be evaluated - which is unlikely, because as we have already pointed out they have a small market share compared to other well established brands.

In other words, they'd like you to pay the price for their own lack of sales and for their own marketing strategy. 

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Geez. Some guys just have to see a conspiracy in everything, can't just take it for what it is. It's a different idea/way to demo some clubs. If you want to try it fine, if not, fine. That's all there is to it. No "truth" to uncover here.

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Geez. Some guys just have to see a conspiracy in everything, can't just take it for what it is. It's a different idea/way to demo some clubs. If you want to try it fine, if not, fine. That's all there is to it. No "truth" to uncover here.

 

No kidding.

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