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Is Club Champion worth it?


Mr. 82
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You should be able to use your own G400 head for the fitting.  I had a ping g400 3wood and did exactly what you want to do last March.  The fitting will consist of you warming up, a slew of shaft options, and a stat sheet at the end with the best shaft for YOUR swing.  They will print out the specs and give you a copy (don’t leave without it).  You can always shop around for the shaft from your fitting or find a similar one.  As for similar shafts, ask the fitter about previous models.  My fitter in Cleveland was very accommodating especially when I told him my financial goal in regards to my clubs.  Finally, I will not buy clubs again without a fitting.  Hope this helps.

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First off, let me say this about your Ping G400 and the stock shaft it came with. OR ANY off the shelf driver for that matter. 

Truth is the shaft in all OEM drivers and wood are "Cheap, low end shafts". Truth is that most any after market shaft that is Spine and FLO aligned before being installed in the club would be a BIG improvement over the factory stock shaft the club came with. Until you hit a drive with a properly aligned shaft you have NO IDEA what an improvement a decent shaft properly installed can make. 

IF you are mostly looking for MORE DISTANCE, then you will NOT be happy with the money you will be spending.

IF you would like to see "tighter dispersion pattern" , then you might just be amazed at what you can get with a good aftermarket shaft that is aligned properly in the head. YES, you "Might" see a gain in distance, but only if the shaft in your driver is NOT close to what you need. When I was fit a few years ago I did NOT see any gain in distance with the  shafts I was tested for, But ONE of the shafts gave me a shot pattern that was HALF the size of any of the other shafts I tested in the Ping G400 Max we used  for the test. WE used the Ping G400 Max for two reasons, One is that it was the most forgiving head available at the time, And second is the fact that my driver head of choice does NOT use a tip adapter, so we HAD to use a newer head that could be used with different shafts with the turn of a wrench. My driver is the 15 year old Cleveland 460 Launcher Comp. WHY? Simple answer is that it's LONG and easy to hit, and with the correct shaft for me, i'ts as good or better than the newer much higher priced drivers on the market today. I can get the 460 Comp head in good shape for less than $50 with shipping, and then install any shaft I want and have a much better driver then ANY off the rack driver you can buy today. And at a much lower total cost. Believe it or not, a properly aligned shaft is much more important that what head you use. 

Truth is most new drivers come with a shaft that cost the OEM "less than $10" YES, that new $500 driver comes with a shaft that cost the factory less the $10 to buy. Is it any wonder that a decent shaft can make a huge difference in the performance of the club? 

 

 

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I am surprised that with all the negative input about CC, that a company rep has not posted stating their concerns etc. Something, even a we are sorry you feel that way.  Just find it interesting. How about that Olympic Gold eh?

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1 hour ago, IONEPUTT said:

Truth is the shaft in all OEM drivers and wood are "Cheap, low end shafts"

Not even close to the truth. Even the made for callaway hzrdus im shaft isn’t low end.

The ping tour shaft is actually built off the aftermarket elements chrome+
 

The hzrdus shafts, the Aldila rogue white which is stock in at least one brand are $300+ shafts when bought from aftermarket dealers. Just like a graphite design, Accra, fujikura and so on

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Driver: PXG 0811 X+ Proto w/UST Helium 5F4

Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

Irons: PXG Gen3 0311T w/Nippon modus 120

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 50*, Tiger grind 56/60

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

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I don't have any experience with Club Champion, but a very good friend of mine was not pleased with his fitting. I wish I could help more.

However, if you are ever in southwest Ohio (I live in Dayton), I can't recommend Miles of Golf in Fairfield (near Cincinnati) enough! I have been going there for the past 7 years. See Derek - he is awesome. Great putter fitting with Eric this summer as well!

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On 3/16/2020 at 6:52 AM, Mr. 82 said:

So I am staying with my sister for 10 days here near Asheville, NC, and I checked and not only is there Top Golf in Greenville, SC an hour away 😛 but there is also a Club Champion in both Charlotte and Greenville, each within an easy drive, which definitely wasn't the case where I live in Tallahassee.

I've been considering seeing them to see if there is a better option for both my PING G400 driver and fairway club then the standard stock shaft in both.  From everything I've seen with Club Champion their goal is to evaluate every club by select manufacturers to find the one that is best for you.  But what if I life the clubs I currently have and just want to see if there is a better shaft that might perhaps increase distance in both clubs?  Is that something I can stipulate up front with them?

Also, I noticed a fitting session for those two clubs alone is $200 (they have a 33% discount, so that would soften the blow a bit).  That's a lot of money to me, but if I can go in there and have them evaluate everything with my driver and fairway club and find some improvement, distance wise, then I am definitely interested.  I just don't know if it would be worth the investment, especially since I am sort of straying from their conventional fitting model in that I want to keep my current clubs and just see if the shafts can be upgraded to something better.

Anyone have any thoughts on all of this?  Anyone do a club champion fitting and can offer me some advice, tips, or suggestions before committing to it?

They are 'pricey,' but realize that they have rent and utilities, the build out cost of the facility, as well as labor at each store, AND, they own all the equipment you will be using during the fitting, plus they need to generate a return for the investors and business..  Tour Spec and the rest all have similar cost issues. I think the fitting is a necessity, but also realize none of the fitters have photographic memory. They're looking to see how you load a club, transition characteristics, how you release into the ball, etc., and put quantifiable evaluations to those parameters. Having all that, they then access a shaft database that allows them to narrow the shaft world to 5-6 that will likely fit your need. That database by the way was originally started by Tom Wishon and if memory serves me well, I believe Everett Lockinvitz of EJL also had a hand in persuading shaft manufacturers so share their shaft profiles with he, Tom, and a few others.  Should you use them to build the clubs they suggest?  Me, Joe K, and a few others can do just as good of work.

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On 3/22/2020 at 8:34 AM, RickyBobby_PR said:

 

.

Club champion has to pay the price of the club with shaft.

They buy heads only, not full clubs, from the OEMs

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3 hours ago, Medfloat said:

You should be able to use your own G400 head for the fitting.  

This may or may not be possible.  My guess is not possible since they probably aren't going to install the required adapter into his driver to make it work with the universal adapters they have on all the demo shafts.

3 minutes ago, flyingwedges said:

They buy heads only, not full clubs, from the OEMs

This has been discussed several times before in several places and I believe the consensus is that they order the entire club & pay the same price as everyone else.  Even if you/they only want the head, the OEMs won't sell just a head and you have pay for it all.  I've been told that you can "request" the stock shaft from club champion and they will give it to you but have no personal experience to back that up.  

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On 4/13/2021 at 8:01 AM, ChiefMikeOfficer said:

It definitely does happen with direct-from-mfr clubs, it just might not be as frequent. I've had adapters come loose and epoxy rattles on those types of clubs too. 

This is 100% a guess (not sure if anyone even tries to keep stats), but it makes sense in my head: I'd expect the least issues in off-the-rack because of how many nearly-identical builds they do; next most in custom-ordered clubs from the manufacturer (similar build process but custom steps might lead to error), and the most in any club that's fully hand-built (whether that's a fitter like CC, expert club builder, etc.). It makes sense to me because those custom shops are likely less precise with things like measuring and applying epoxy. There's skill in club building too, and whether CC has highly skilled builders is a valid question -- the fitters tend to make it sound like they are the ones doing the actual build, and if that's true, I'd expect variance in skill across location; however, I'm pretty sure my last fitter did not build my clubs - he is based in Milwaukee, and I'm pretty sure the clubs were built in Chicago (the cities are close, so not unreasonable for him to go to a Chicago build shop, but how likely is that?). 

All CC builds are in Willowbrook, IL, a few steps from where Everett had his second shop (the fist was in a small storefront about 1 mile away)  Your Fitter will never see the inside of the build shop for any customer, it's not what they do.

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On 4/13/2021 at 12:42 PM, Middler said:

I went thru it in detail about a year ago if you want to find that thread, and many “experts” here blamed me while completely side stepping the clear statistical flaws I pointed out in CC’s methodology. And I’ve seen others here who had the exact same methodology used at CC on them, so my experience wasn’t an outlier. The some “experts” also told me CC obviously did my fitting in the wrong order, and I should’ve known better! I pay them and then tell them how to do their job? Yeah right...

So I’m not keen on reliving that.

For $450+ the shaft they sold me was worse dispersion and no change in distance vs the OEM shaft I had, I have 6 weeks of stats that prove it. But I am sure under the right circumstances a CC fitting can be value added. They wouldn’t be in business otherwise.

Can you recall the name of thread where you posted that evaluation?

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On 4/14/2021 at 7:37 PM, Dr Strangelove said:

Like most things, it comes down to the person(s) at the store.

I am satisfied with my driver fitting and purchase at Club Champion.  I am comfortable that I got to try out all the clubheads that I was interested in and that the shaft selected fit best.  It's expensive, but I believe the fitting is a fair value.  Note: "Fair value" is when you won't pay a penny more and they won't take a penny less.

What I don't like is that you have to pay full price for the driver and stock shaft.  And then the full price of the fit shaft (not an upgrade charge).  But when they come in, you don't get two shafts.  I would have liked to have offset my cost by selling the stock (which I could have done if I just purchased both the club and shaft separately myself).

Also, I'm not a beleiver in shaft puring.  

They only receive heads, and not full shafts from the OEM.  Everett was an early adopter of SST Pure so they may have had input into the technology as it evolved, giving Nick the opportunity to buy it.

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10 hours ago, Pooter McGavin said:

I find it odd that they wouldn't have a stock shaft even if its a made for, since they don't return them to the customer.

They do not buy full clubs, but receive heads only from OEMs

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15 minutes ago, ChitownM2 said:

This may or may not be possible.  My guess is not possible since they probably aren't going to install the required adapter into his driver to make it work with the universal adapters they have on all the demo shafts.

This has been discussed several times before in several places and I believe the consensus is that they order the entire club & pay the same price as everyone else.  Even if you/they only want the head, the OEMs won't sell just a head and you have pay for it all.  I've been told that you can "request" the stock shaft from club champion and they will give it to you but have no personal experience to back that up.  

I know the original owner, I know the guy who turned it into CC. I've been in the build shop many many times.  They do not buy full clubs and pull the shafts.  They may be the only one in the business who has the luxury of 'heads '

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Some drive a Lexus, some a Toyota. A single digit player may find the investment to pay $1000 for a driver worthwhile to go for a state championship. Validating a shaft on a 3 year old driver is not worth $200 in my mind. You can find a good pro shop with outdoor fittings that will do the same with a Trackman. Likely starting at $75 with some discount for either fitting, shaft, or new driver.  A stock 425 shaft should fit a 400 at a lower price than a custom selection  

In any event, it is worth finding a shop with a fitter you can (learn to) trust. Being over 70 and LH, there is nothing I can buy off the rack that is even close. Worth paying $75-150 for a professional checkup. 

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23 minutes ago, flyingwedges said:

I know the original owner, I know the guy who turned it into CC. I've been in the build shop many many times.  They do not buy full clubs and pull the shafts.  They may be the only one in the business who has the luxury of 'heads '

If that is really the case then there is no justification for the pricing then.  They aren't a retail customer so I would presume they are not paying full retail price of a fully built club with shaft, grip, etc for just the heads.  Just like PGATSS or my local shop they are probably buying at wholesale which is substantially less.  Especially now when you have almost no "made for" shafts in any of the big 5 club options, which means the shaft is no longer a $15 throw away like it was 15 years ago.  All of them offer several choices of "premium" "aftermarket" shafts as a no-cost upgrade or as part of their base stock offerings.  Motore, Smoke RDX, Tensei AV Raw and many others are all $300 retail shafts that are no-cost choices from several of the major companies so they aren't getting them for free so there should be some serious kick-back if they are getting just the heads.  

There are also some cases where they aren't just buying the heads.  I've met several people who have been fitted there and ended up with a no-cost shaft option but had CC assemble the club and they didn't have to buy the shaft separately.  Which means that they certainly do have the option to buy the a whole club (probably unassembled) and then do the assembly themselves.  

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9 hours ago, flyingwedges said:

All CC builds are in Willowbrook, IL, a few steps from where Everett had his second shop (the fist was in a small storefront about 1 mile away)  Your Fitter will never see the inside of the build shop for any customer, it's not what they do.

I was speculating based on the fitter's comments and giving benefit of the doubt because of that. If what you said is true, then it's even more disappointing - the fitter made misleading comments, and their dedicated build shop failed on 20% of the clubs I bought from them (excusable with varied builders, unacceptable with a dedicated shop).

Driver: :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero, 9* (adjusted to 10*), Accra TZ6 75 (American Flag), M5 Flex

Fairway: :taylormade-small: SIM, 15*, Accra FX 2.0 300F, M5 Flex

Driving Iron: :srixon-small: U85 2 iron, Fujikura Pro 2.0 8 HB, S Flex

Irons: :mizuno-small: 4-6:JPX-919 Forged, 7-PW: JPX-919 Tour. All with Nippon Pro Modus 120 S Flex

Wedges: :mizuno-small:T-20 Blue Ion 50.07, 56.10 w/DG Tour Issue S400 (60.06 currently on the bench in favor of :Miura: K-Grind 2.0 60* w/Accra SPI Tour)

Putter: Depends on the day. Bounce between :EVNROLL: ER5B 35" with Gravity Pistol Grip and :mizuno-small: M Craft Type II Blue Ion

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11 hours ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

Not even close to the truth. Even the made for callaway hzrdus im shaft isn’t low end.

The ping tour shaft is actually built off the aftermarket elements chrome+
 

The hzrdus shafts, the Aldila rogue white which is stock in at least one brand are $300+ shafts when bought from aftermarket dealers. Just like a graphite design, Accra, fujikura and so on

I agree. Most of the made for shafts are pretty good. I used to test clubs for Wilson Sporting Goods back in the early 2000s when they had their testing facility in Humboldt,  TN. Most of the made for shafts performed quite admirable against the best shafts they gave me. The only exception I remember was the Fujikura Speeder 757. That one outperformed everything.

@IONEPUTT I respectfully disagree on your argument about shaft alignment. Thecounter argument is that many drivers, fairway woods and hybrids are adjustable and the shaft actually rotates, as the adapter doesn't have a sleeve to keep the shaft in the same orientation. So, install a pured, FLO'd, or spine aligned shaft and then decide you want to tweak the settings. Now, you are no longer aligned unless the adapter sleeve allows the shaft to stay in the same orientation. Both Taylormade and PING have sleeves that allow the shaft to rotate during adjustment.

Xcaliber shafts have an alignment process before they put the finishes on their shafts. Last week, I installed one in my PING 3 wood and assumed I would be playing it in the -1°, flat setting (as I was fitted for). So, that is how I installed the shaft.

After some more testing, I decided that I really didn't like so many misses right. I played with the -1.5° and -1.0° settings and decided I liked the -1.0 setting, which also is 2° more upright yet still 0.5° flatter than the other 3 woods I have gamed. Now, my shaft is no longer spine aligned. I highly doubt I will see a huge dispersion difference than if I reinstalled the shaft with the graphics aligned. 

I used to have every shaft pured and now no longer request it. I am not good enough to notice a difference and am pretty convinced that unless it is a complete garbage shaft, that there is little difference. I have seen studies that support puring and many that say it makes no difference. I would tend to agree that the results difference would be negligible. Just my opinion and experience over the last 19 years of being my own club builder. 

As soon as you put certain adjustment sleeves on a club and start tweaking, any supposed benefits of puring or any other alignment method would be gone.

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Taylormade SIM 9° set at 7.5°, Xcaliber Avalon 6 tour stiff, tipped 1/2", 11g backweight, 10g adjustable weight, D5, 45 7/8", PING G425 LST 3 wood, set at 13° Xcaliber Avalon 6 tour stiff, tipped 1 1/2" 43", D4, Maltby KE4 FDI 19° (bent to 17°)Modus 120S 3 iron shaft, D4,Snake Eyes quick strike tour 18° hybrid, Xcaliber T6* TS untipped (soft stepped)

Maltby KE4 tour hybrid, 22°, kuro kage black shaft X 

Maltby TS-1 irons, Modus 120X soft stepped once, D4, 2° flat, 4-PW

Maltby TSW wedges,  DG X100 Sensicore,  50°, 54°, 58°, 2° flat

Ping TR series Anser 5, 33", 2° flat, 1.5° strong

Tp5x pix

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19 minutes ago, jtgavigan said:

Most of the made for shafts are pretty good.

In today’s market there are very few made for shafts. Hzrdzus IM for Callaway, ventus for TM and Tour Edge and maybe 1-2 others. Other than those the shafts offered by the club manufacturers are the same across all brands. The pricing and offerings are based on what we deal the club manufacturer worked out with the shaft manufacturer 

That goes for what many consider aftermarket and what many think or consider made for or stock.

TM offers the ventus with velocore for $250 upcharge and same for ADDI

Titleist offers the same shafts but it’s $345 for the ventus and $200 for the ADDI. 
 
Some brands have chosen to offer only hzrdus rdx black and not blue. Some have offer both and varies on whether stock or upcharge fee. Some offer the limited edition paint on the rdx blue for an upcharge. 

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Driver: PXG 0811 X+ Proto w/UST Helium 5F4

Wood: TaylorMade M5 5W w/Accra TZ5 +1/2”, TaylorMade Sim 3W w/Aldila rogue white

Hybrid: PXG Gen2 22* w/AD hybrid

Irons: PXG Gen3 0311T w/Nippon modus 120

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 50*, Tiger grind 56/60

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

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1 hour ago, ChiefMikeOfficer said:

I was speculating based on the fitter's comments and giving benefit of the doubt because of that. If what you said is true, then it's even more disappointing - the fitter made misleading comments, and their dedicated build shop failed on 20% of the clubs I bought from them (excusable with varied builders, unacceptable with a dedicated shop).

This last comment came off as more negative than intended -- it is a disappointment, but doesn't change my actual satisfaction. 

I've been fitted by them twice. I'm happy with the outcome. I think I went in with the right expectations, and I came away with good products that work for me. I didn't spend the $5k that others are saying, but did put up some good money, which I fully expected. I'm not in a location that has a ton of options for this type of fitting, but I expect I'd have the same experience at one of their direct competitors (a friend went to TrueSpec and it sounded very similar). 

Club Champion is not just a fitter, it's a specialty shop. They are an entryway into after-market and higher-end shafts that you might not find at other retailers. If you want to dive into what's possible with after-market shafts, pay up and go there (or to TrueSpec or Cool Clubs); if you're expecting to get fitted with stock products, you're not going to get it there, and that should be expected -- they view these products as inferior, and even call that out in their "are custom clubs more expensive?" FAQ. If you want stock shafts included outside of your gamer, go to a place that will actually apply the fitting fee toward a purchase -- that's a better use of your money (I think GolfTEC and PGATSS both offer this). 

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Driver: :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero, 9* (adjusted to 10*), Accra TZ6 75 (American Flag), M5 Flex

Fairway: :taylormade-small: SIM, 15*, Accra FX 2.0 300F, M5 Flex

Driving Iron: :srixon-small: U85 2 iron, Fujikura Pro 2.0 8 HB, S Flex

Irons: :mizuno-small: 4-6:JPX-919 Forged, 7-PW: JPX-919 Tour. All with Nippon Pro Modus 120 S Flex

Wedges: :mizuno-small:T-20 Blue Ion 50.07, 56.10 w/DG Tour Issue S400 (60.06 currently on the bench in favor of :Miura: K-Grind 2.0 60* w/Accra SPI Tour)

Putter: Depends on the day. Bounce between :EVNROLL: ER5B 35" with Gravity Pistol Grip and :mizuno-small: M Craft Type II Blue Ion

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12 hours ago, flyingwedges said:

They do not buy full clubs, but receive heads only from OEMs

Seems dishonest they charge full off the rack MSRP for heads only when off the rack includes stock shaft, adapter, grip, assembly cost and excess shipping volume/cost. And then charge the customer for custom shaft, adapter, grip and assembly again...

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