What Is Meant By The Title "Certified Personal Club Fitter?"
It means lots of formal training from multiple sources, interaction with individual craftsmen and trade organizations. It also means countless hours of practice mastering the techniques needed to choose the correct combination of parts (golf club components) to make a club that actually works with each customer's unique swing. Club fitting is not a science as much as a true craft not unlike the artistic work of bricklayers and landscapers. If you continue to browse through this website, you'll see the difference between the other "fitting" programs and what we do at Golfcraft Custom Clubs. You'll see why we can guarantee successful performance while virtually no one else in the club business can.
What Exactly Does The "Performance Guarantee" Promise?
Because we state flatly that the shaft is responsible for at least 90% of what a club will do, that the circumference of the grip is next in importance, and that our fitting procedure requires us to choose the best shaft and grip size for you, we must promise a great result. How could we make those decisions and, then, if the clubs are a problem, say to you "sorry, we did the best we could." Our clubs must meet your expectations or we'll be working on them with you until they do. How we do that may vary due to geography, but you can be confident that even if an adjustment becomes necessary, we'll be there to make sure the outcome is what you paid for.
How Much Will My New Clubs Cost?
Our pricing has always been based on our actual cost of production and goods (components, supplies, shipping, etc.) Add to that our standard charges (gross profit) for taking your order, fitting you, building and guaranteeing your clubs, etc. This means that if the head you choose costs us $2.00 more (or less) than another head, your finished club will cost $2.00 more (or less.) As a result, we have no incentive to try to "upsell" you since it won't increase our profit one cent!
In general, then, you can expect that a top-grade, pro-line set of 8 irons, graphite or steel shafted and premium gripped, will cost you from about 35% to 50% less than the big name brands. You'll receive similar savings on your woods, hybrids, or any other product you may purchase. In building your new clubs, we'll use only the finest tour grade components available, and don't forget, our clubs are guaranteed to work with your swing!
How Long Will It Take To Get My New Clubs?
Because we build clubs for golfers all over the world, this is a tough question, but generally, from the time you're fitted to the time we ship, it takes about a week. Occasionally, there may be a delay in getting the components we need, but if that happens we'll always let you know, probably by email. Receiving the special order components we need to build your new clubs takes one to five days; most commonly one or two. It's pretty safe to say, then, that for orders in the Western Hemisphere, you'll be playing your new clubs in less than two weeks. For those of you in more distant places, you already know we're at the mercy of the shippers. In many cases you may know the best way for us to ship to you and you can tell us when you order. We promise not to make you wait a single day longer than necessary to do the job right.
Which Club Component Is The Most Important?
In order of its impact on performance, the shaft is by far the most important component. Next is the grip, and finally the head. The engineering of golf club heads varies little, with the frequent design changes due primarily to marketing and cosmetic considerations. The shaft flex has a very important effect on your swing timing and face angle at impact. It also has much to do with head speed, but head or swing speed alone DO NOT determine your flex requirement! How you generate your speed can only be determined by a professional fitter.
The circumference of the grip, easily the second most important fitting consideration, has a lot to do with how your wrists will work in your swing. Retail golf club sellers and advertisers that emphasize the heads are in the club selling business, not the club fitting business. We know we can fit you with heads you'll like, and if you wish, we can often even use your existing heads. Or you may already know the head designs or styles you want, and it's perfectly OK to choose a head simply because you like the way it looks. If you're finding it difficult to make a decision on heads, please email Ken and he can help you make a wise selection. Clubheads will last for many years if you take care of them and you like the way they look.
Which Is Better; Steel Or Graphite Shafts?
There is no longer really a debate over graphite shafts in woods. Virtually all drivers and most fairway woods are graphite shafted. Tour players have made the switch after many years of trial, the last of them changing in just the past few years. Many more tour players are now using graphite in their irons as well. As it went with woods, when more of the big name players make this change in irons, there'll be a major move to graphite shafts for all golf clubs! It's tough to argue that much lighter tools which do the same job aren't better for the one using them.
But what about preference? You may already know if you prefer the weight of steel vs. graphite shafts? This is just one of several shaft choice decisions, but it's the area where precise selection is never compromised. There are many shaft details and wildly varying specs such as torque, bend point, weight range, general flex or even color. You might have a particular preference in some of these details, but because true club fitting lives or dies on the choice of shaft and its precise formulation, we're always ready to help out. Ken specializes in and pays careful attention to each of the many things to consider in the area of shaft choice.
So is graphite better? Since it does the same job at half the weight, the simple answer has to be yes. Because graphite shafts are easily as strong as steel and impervious to bending out of shape, with graphite at half the weight there's really no contest. But steel shafts just feel better to some golfers and they work fine! They're just heavier, that's all. For many amateurs the original cost of graphite shafts was an economic deterrent. But now, with us anyway, an entire graphite shafted iron set is typically less than $100 more than steel. Extraordinary graphite shafts are available for little more than many steel shafts, with some even less expensive than several newer steel models. Ken will discuss this important choice, and your clubs will be built the way you decide.
Why Is Grip Size So Important?
You may not have heard this before, but the circumference (and, of course, the condition) of your grips is of critical importance. Not only is every hand unique, but how open or closed it is will determine the level of pressure you apply at the bottom of the swing. Gravity and centrifugal force are pulling hard on the club head and your hands will automatically respond with the necessary amount of "squeeze." If the grip is too large, the range of motion in the wrists is reduced, limiting the backswing arc and changing the timing of the swing. If it's too small, you risk injury to your hands and wrists due to "clutching" rather than just "holding" your club. Whether too big or too small, control and ball striking are negatively affected. We'll fit the circumference of your grips to your hands. With the clubs we build for you, you'll know that each grip in your set will be identical and sized exactly the way you want it. If you have unusually large or small hands, the brand and model of grip you select is even more important, because we must be able to adjust it to your exact size. When we fit you, we'll discuss a simple way to get pictures of you and your hands, but even without them, we'll always find a way to determine these details.
Can Custom Fitted Clubs Eliminate My Slice?
Most slices and hooks have their origins in a swing problem. To make a ball curve, you pretty much have to downswing inside or outside your backswing plane, or hit the ball with the face open or closed...or both. But we can't always simply blame the swing. We've seen lifelong slices disappear with a fitted club, just because the old club was forcing the golfer to alter or compromise their natural swing to get a straighter shot more often. Practicing an altered natural swing might help for the moment, but if the real problem is related to swing timing which is built into the shaft, for many players permanent inconsistency will result. Remember, the shaft loads (bends) and unloads with your downswing. When you start your downswing, the shaft bends, and it must stay bent until the head reaches the ball. If your shaft isn't timed properly to do that with your natural swing, you will change your swing. And you'll continue to change it to some degree until you finally, accidentally, somehow get the right shaft. So, yes, fitted clubs often can and do cure a slice. Get your fitted clubs, practice, and those straighter shots and the lower scores will come. Sometimes very much lower!
Do You Fit Clubs For Kids And Golfers With Special Needs?
The custom fitting nature of our business assumes that every player has special needs. We've never seen two people just alike, and we don't think we ever will. Adults and kids, male or female, paraplegics, amputees, young or old, tall or short, arthritis or spinal problems, or any combination of factors, can define a golfer's special needs. Our primary focus has always been based on these assumptions, and we've been fitting clubs to golfer's personal characteristics since our beginning in 1989. We've built clubs for all of the above special needs and many others, and we've never failed to come up with a solution. We specialize in "special people."