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Alignment Marks on Balls


Tiftaaft
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Just an informal survey & comments:  

Do you use ball alignment marks (either manufactured or self inflicted) when putting?  

I prefer a clean ball and while I sometimes play a triple track Cally - I place my ball on the opposite side.  Maybe old school, but I find alignment marks distracting (tried to use it for a period of time, but didn't find my putting improved measurably using alignment... I can close pull my putter across the line as easily with or without the lines ;)). 

Just curious how many find the lines on balls advantageous to your success on the greens.

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I always line up the side stamp when I'm putting, but don't line up off the tee. When I'm putting, it's mostly as a final visual check as I'm setting up. My routine is to read the line and pick my aim point then line up the side stamp to that aim point. Then I set up next to the ball for three practice strokes and then address the ball. Because I'm (extremely) right-eye dominant, I've learned not to trust my reads when I'm standing over the putt so if I see something other than where my side stamp is pointing, I either trust the side stamp or I back off and take another look.

I have tried using alignment markings like drawing a full circle around the ball and even splurged for the Align XL from golfballs.com, but I find those extremely distracting and they don't help my read based on my routine. Bonus: the more prominent the alignment marking, the more perfect it has to be. Even the slightest bit of wobble will make you think you hit a bad putt when it could really be that some paint was applied incorrectly by 1 degree. Not good for my confidence when I see the wobble...

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I line up my ball when putting on my intended start line. I also line up off the tee, but not straight on my line - I place the ball with something like a logo or my ball mark on the inside rear so I can visualize hitting the ball from the inside to help not lunge at the ball or come OTT.

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I don’t use alignment aid. The only marks I put on my ball is to identify them while in play especially if I dont have the personalized ones with me

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I don't use alignment marks or line the ball up in any particular way.

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2 hours ago, russtopherb said:

I line up my ball when putting on my intended start line. I also line up off the tee, but not straight on my line - I place the ball with something like a logo or my ball mark on the inside rear so I can visualize hitting the ball from the inside to help not lunge at the ball or come OTT.

Great comment russ.. I was just working on moving my focus to the front of the ball (from my normal back edge) to help a tendency to hit the big ball first.  I'm going to try the logo focus tip.

2 hours ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

I don’t use alignment aid. The only marks I put on my ball is to identify them while in play especially if I dont have the personalized ones with me

Agreed RB, a dot or two depending on how I feel that day.

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2 hours ago, greggarner said:

Bonus: the more prominent the alignment marking, the more perfect it has to be.

That is an interesting unintended side effect of marking.  Great comment GG

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I putt with an alignment mark.  The balls I use don't come with one so I add one with a black sharpie marker and marking tool.  After aligning the mark in line to my intended putting line I focus on putting through the line, like hammering a nail into a board (common swing thought).  The reason for this swing thought is to putt through the ball and not just hit the ball.  This promotes me to release the putter and make a smooth stroke.  I have another method to gauge speed that seems to work for me.

I also put a dot by the number in gold sharpie marker to the left of the alignment line (first dimple lower right of the number). 

Ball alignment mark.jpeg

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I used to putt with a line and then switched to no mark.  Thought was that I would putt better by seeing the curve of the putt and not putting at an intermediate target or point left/right if the hole.   Probably okay for lag putting,  but considering going back to a line on putts that are 15’ and in to see if that helps my midrange putting. 

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On 8/9/2021 at 10:41 AM, Tiftaaft said:

Just an informal survey & comments:  

Do you use ball alignment marks (either manufactured or self inflicted) when putting?  

I prefer a clean ball and while I sometimes play a triple track Cally - I place my ball on the opposite side.  Maybe old school, but I find alignment marks distracting (tried to use it for a period of time, but didn't find my putting improved measurably using alignment... I can close pull my putter across the line as easily with or without the lines ;)). 

Just curious how many find the lines on balls advantageous to your success on the greens.

Finally someone else who does this. On the tee and green I find a blank side and put that facing up. I find all marks distracting too.

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I use a line for putting and on the tee box. ( always a blue line )

 On putting I read the line and pick my aim point then line up the line to that aim point. Then I set up next to the ball for three practice strokes and then address the ball.

On the tee box I line up the line on the ball with the spot I want to hit in the fairway. I want a small target to aim for. My course has many tee boxes that are angled to draw you into hitting away from the fairway. I find it easier to focus on my ball alignment. Square myself to the ball, practice swing once, address the ball and swing.

It's what works for me! 

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2 hours ago, Tom the Golf Nut said:

My course has many tee boxes that are angled to draw you into hitting away from the fairway.

The grounds crew are pretty devious at my course as well!!  

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3 hours ago, DiscipleofPenick said:

Finally someone else who does this.

I'm glad I'm not the only one!  🙂

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No marks, no lines, and oftentimes I putt the ball after not having touched it all. Makes no difference to me how it’s oriented.

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I do not use a line on my ball.  I mark my ball with 6 dots on different areas of the ball (basically all sides).  I do use the dots as focus points when putting (one of the dots at the top) as it helps me maintain a steady head thru the stroke.  I do not use it as an alignment tool.   I also use it on the teeing box by placing one of the dots on the inside rear quadrant where I can see it.  Again, I focus on that dot during my swing.  With a dot on all sides of the ball, one dot is almost always visible when the ball is in play.

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  • 2 weeks later...

For longer putts (12+ feet) I don’t use an alignment mark of any kind, but I use the manufacturer marking on putts inside of that. I’ve gone back and forth with using the alignment marking on the tee, not sure I can find a discernible difference. 

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I had tried using the preprinted mark years ago, abandoned it after lousy results and then read an article on golf digest that most people actually aim for more break than what they thing they are.

 

So I went back to using the mark on the ball, played for a little more break and finally got it.....I never looked back.

I NEVER uses sharpie, the line is never as clean as the factory line.

 

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No. Tried Triple-Track but it really screws me up. I prefer to find my line then a nice smooth stroke.

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On 8/12/2021 at 10:59 AM, caeye0710 said:

First time MGS poster here after spending years at another forum site, also a "Certified Club Junkie"

I was just going some research on the MG3 being released early next month. IMO, what a sharp looking wedge! I've admittedly been a Vokey guy my entire life, so doubt I'll be making a move considering my SM8's are waiting for their first round (just swapped new ones in after a year with my first set of SM8). 

While looking at the MSRP for the new MG3 ($179 for stock options), it got me thinking: Are OEM's going completely off the rails with prices on new equipment?

I don't remember which model it was, but I remember that I could walk in to a shop and get three new wedges for $327 plus tax ($109 MSRP). It's gotten to the point where buying three new TM wedges would be $578 after tax here in NC (NEARLY $600!).

Let me add to that by saying: I understand. Over time, costs related to materials and shipping increase. One can argue that even production costs increase, although as a Process Improvement Consultant in the Manufacturing industry for close to a decade, I don't know if that rings true as much as we think it does due to the automation process nowadays (although I'll admit there has to be some merit to it). Doesn't mean I'm an expert in the Behind-The-Scenes production of golf equipment, but a lot of my clients have remained stagnant in their production process over the years due to robotics and automation processes, so I would think it would ring somewhat true to golf equipment OEMs.

Back to the topic: Are we getting to a point where it's going to eventually be too expensive to get the latest and greatest equipment? In 2004, Drivers hit a $500 MSRP for the first time (TM R7, Titleist 905 Series, etc.). The R7 was the first driver to be listed at $500 (I think) and I recall people throwing a fit. Titleist quickly followed suit on the 905 series, although I specifically remember our Titleist rep at my club back then mentioned that the initial MSRP was going to be $409 until TM came to market and announced the R7 at a higher price point.

 Nowadays, $550+ is the norm. Over 17 years that difference doesn't add up to much, but what happens in another 15 years?

Stock drivers listed at $800?

Stock FW's at $500?

Iron sets off the rack at $2,000?

Wedges at $200 a piece?

Putters (too many variables here honestly, but let's say $400 average)

That means if you want to revamp an entire bag, you'll be dropping somewhere in the neighborhood of $4,300 if you stick to stock options and don't get fitted for upgraded shafts and specs.

Maybe I'm just completely off base here and my opinion is wrong, but I'd be curious to here what some of you folks think. 

Feel free to roast me if I sound like an idiot 😆

 

 

On 8/9/2021 at 11:41 AM, Tiftaaft said:

Just an informal survey & comments:  

Do you use ball alignment marks (either manufactured or self inflicted) when putting?  

I prefer a clean ball and while I sometimes play a triple track Cally - I place my ball on the opposite side.  Maybe old school, but I find alignment marks distracting (tried to use it for a period of time, but didn't find my putting improved measurably using alignment... I can close pull my putter across the line as easily with or without the lines ;)). 

Just curious how many find the lines on balls advantageous to your success on the greens.

I like to see white only.

 

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