At the last tournament Tiger Woods played across the pond, the 2010 British Open, he surprised a lot of golf fans by using a Nike Method 001 putter instead of the trusty Scotty Cameron he'd used to win 13 of his major championships. Woods explained that he'd always had trouble putting on slow greens, and he felt that the Nike putter would help him handle to greens at St. Andrews more effectively.
The experiment lasted three days, and Woods switched back to the Scotty Cameron putter for the final round.
This week at Celtic Manor, as he and his teammates prepare to defend the Ryder Cup, Woods has been spotted not only using his heel-toe weighted Scotty Cameron putter (left in photo), but also a Nike Method 003 putter, a mid-size mallet (right in photo).
We'll have to wait and see which putter makes its way into Woods's bag on Friday.
In 2009, at the PGA Championship at Hazeltine National Golf Club, Scotty Cameron walked me through the newest line of putters he'd created, the California Series. The four putters—the Monterey, Del Mar, Sonoma and Coronado—all feature a unique gold-hued finished that Cameron called "honey dipped."
When I first saw the dark, circular area on the sole, I thought the finish on the bottom of the putters had been damaged by a sticker. It occurred to me later than the circle is actually a sun, setting into the Pacific with a white seagull flying past. Now you know why I didn't do well in Art Appreciation in college.
A fifth putter has now been added to the California Series, the Hollywood, which you can see below.
Anther heel-toe weighted blade design with a high toe profile, the Hollywood looks similar to the Monterey, but the back flange flows smoothly down and away from the topline instead of going back in steps. The neck is also round and goes directly into the shaft, like the Coronado's.
The Hollywood features the same 303 Stainless Steel head and gold finish other California putters have, as well as the sole weights that allow Titleist to customize the swing weight based on the club's length.
The Hollywood, which should retail for about $300 in pro shops, will come standard with a single sight line, 3/4 shaft-width of offset, 71° lie angle and 4° of loft.
Answering a reader's golf equipment question on Twitter is tough because a good, thoughtful explanation usually requires more than 140 characters. So here is a video I created to answer a question I was sent by a 16-handicap player who can't decided whether to add a hybrid or a gap wedge to his bag ...
If you have a question that you'd like me to answer, send it to me on Twitter.
CARLSBAD, Calif. — For more than a year, TaylorMade's Burner irons have been among the best selling irons in the game. The combination of distance and ease of use made them especially popular with mid- and higher-handicap players.
Tinkering with that success was not without risk, but Brett Wahl, TaylorMade's senior director of product development for irons, says that the new Burner 2.0 irons are simply better than their predecessors — for several reasons.
"In a way, we took the concept of developing eight individual clubs a little more seriously this time," Wahl says. "Each of these clubheads have more beneficial features built into them than the previous Burner irons."
For example, the faces of the Burner 2.0 long-irons are thinner than the faces of the original Burner long-irons, which should help golfers create more ball speed and distance. The weight saved by making the faces thinner has been redistributed to the lower section of the clubs, near the heel and toe areas, which Wahl says should make them more forgiving too.
At the same time, the faces of the short irons are thicker than the original Burner's, and the heads are smaller and feature thinner top lines. Doing this puts a greater emphasis on accuracy and control at address, but also puts more weight directly behind the ball to enhance feel.
The multi-material badge on the back of the Burner 2.0 is also an upgrade over the original Burner's. "It has a softer material integrated with the aluminum which gives it better dampening, in terms of managing vibration," Wahl says. "And in the long-irons, there is a stiff nylon layer of material that you can't see that really helps to improve the sound."
Wahl says that the sound-enhancing layer was not used in the mid- and short-irons, and the badge used is thinner because their heads have thicker faces. They naturally create a more-pleasing sound.
In addition to the badge, on the back of all the Burner 2.0 irons you'll see a circular piece of metal that is part of TaylorMade's Inverted Cone Technology (ICT). But once again, it's been upgraded.
"The ICT has been re-shaped and re-positioned slightly in the long-irons in order to ensure the clubs deliver faster ball speeds, but also have consistency on mis-hits," Wahl says.
The soles of the short irons, like the 9-iron, are also thinner than the long irons because golfers swing a 9-iron more vertically into the ball. In contrast, most players sweep the ball using a flatter swing when hitting a 4-iron, so a wide sole is beneficial.
Each of the eight iron shafts flexes in a slightly different area, or kick point. The long irons have a lower kick point to help players get shots higher; the short irons have a higher kick point to encourage a slightly lower trajectory; and the mid-irons' kick point is in between.
Brett Wahl explains the technologies that went into the Burner 2.0 irons in the video below:
The Burner 2.0 irons should start arriving in pro shops on Oct. 8 and will sell for about $700 with steel shafts and $900 with graphite shafts.
See-Try-Buy: Learn more about TaylorMadeclubs, and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC.
TaylorMade-Adidas Golf CEO Mark King unveiled the new TaylorMade 2.0 Burner irons during a live Webcast on Thursday. Watch the video to learn about the new irons, and check back for more information on the event from Golf.com's David Dusek.