How to Make Your Own Golf Clubs
Most people who need new golf clubs spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars on clubs that don't fit them. They shy away from making their own because they believe it's too much of a challenge.
The fact is, you can make clubs that fit you perfectly and cost far less than you will pay for clubs off the rack. By following some simple steps and making your own clubs, you'll soon be shooting lower scores than you ever imagined.
Go shopping for shafts, clubheads and grips before you begin to make your clubs. Less expensive shafts are made of steel and are very durable.
Choose shafts made of graphite, and you will have lighter ones that some say are easier to hit, but they cost more than steel shafts. Also, you should choose a flex that matches with your golf game.
If you hit the ball relatively short, you should probably have shafts that will bend more than the firm ones chosen by longer hitters. Grips and clubheads are a matter of personal choice, and their prices vary quite a lot.
Make your driver first because it is the easiest to construct. Its length is a matter of what is comfortable for you, but strangely, touring professionals use drivers that, on average, are shorter than those used by amateurs because they feel their accuracy improves without sacrificing much length. If you feel comfortable with the driver you are replacing, make your new driver the same length.
Rough up your shafts. Whether you choose steel or graphite shafts, they will need to be made less smooth where they meet the clubheads so the epoxy will bond tightly. To rough up steel shafts, all you need is sandpaper or a file to do the job. But if you have chosen graphite shafts, you must first remove the outer coating where the shaft meets the clubhead.
You should use a belt sander to do this because graphite shafts are easy to destroy.
After that, you should use sandpaper to finish roughing. If the connection point, or hosel, is too small to accept the shaft, simply use a wire drill bit to make it fit.
Put the shaft inside the hosel after you liberally apply epoxy to both pieces. Rotate them slightly to make sure that they are completely covered by the epoxy. Make sure the shaft is completely inside the hosel by tapping the grip end of the shaft against something hard.
Shorten the shafts in about 24 hours, after the epoxy has hardened. Saw them with a hacksaw or band saw if they are made of steel. If they are made of graphite, you'll need to wrap the area to be cut with about three layers of tape before cutting them with a band saw to keep them from shattering.
Install the grips by cleaning the area thoroughly with grip solvent; then apply the double-sided tape.
You must now soak the tape with the grip solvent, which will ease the job of sliding the grips onto the shafts.
Make final adjustments to the grips while the grip solvent dries, which usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes. Then you can play with your new clubs the next day because the grips will have been set.
Bill Herrfeldt specializes in finance, sports and the needs of retiring people, and has been published in the national edition of "Erickson Tribune," the "Washington Post" and the "Arizona Republic." He graduated from the University of Louisville.