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Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
This came up in the 'cheating' thread, but I don't think my response is really on-topic there. Someone observed that there was someone stealing range balls by actually walking onto the range. I've seen people do this on rare occasion. I have to admit: I don't get it.

Are there really courses with range balls that you'd consider hitting if you weren't at a driving range? They're great for practicing a swing or flight path. But they're limited carry so they last longer on rehits.

When I'm at the range, I hit my 8-Iron through 5-Iron about the same distance. I hit my 9-Iron through Lob-Wedge about the same distance. Yet, let me hit the same swing with my Stratas, and I get the appropriate 8-12 yard gaps on club distance.

Can someone explain to me why some people have this desire to steal range balls? I'm guessing that no one on this board would ever have done that, but it's obviously enough of a threat by the quantity of signs I see.
post #2 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Do you mean the Srixon range type balls? Cuz at this one kinda shitty range near my house they have a mix of titleist, top flite, pinnacle, nike, etc. of balls, and ocassionally you'll find a really nice Pro v1 that looks like it was hit about 5 times, then ill scoop it up. but the srixon practice balls are shitty as hell, for real, who would want em?
post #3 of 34
Thread Starter 

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by CG031 View Post
Do you mean the Srixon range type balls? Cuz at this one kinda shitty range near my house they have a mix of titleist, top flite, pinnacle, nike, etc. of balls, and ocassionally you'll find a really nice Pro v1 that looks like it was hit about 5 times, then ill scoop it up. but the srixon practice balls are shitty as hell, for real, who would want em?
My home course used to use Top Flite range balls and now uses Nike range balls. But they're still range balls, and I can't imagine why anyone would want one other than for use at the range.

I do occasionally find a 'real' Titleist, Callaway, etc, in my bucket, but I always either send it back (by means of hitting it!) or give it to a pro at the range. I guess the range being adjacent to the 9th fairway leads to some balls getting through the net.
post #4 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

at my course they have some special machine that colors the ball yellow and puts stripes over the logos so you don't know what brand it is, but occasionally i will find nike or titleist balls in there. I'm assuming that after buckets people will hit some of thier own balls just to compare or something.

and i was the one who made that post. I haven't seen that guy at the range since.
post #5 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by Shindig View Post
Can someone explain to me why some people have this desire to steal range balls? I'm guessing that no one on this board would ever have done that, but it's obviously enough of a threat by the quantity of signs I see.
In the good old days of before this year, when I was a really cheap bastard, I had no shame in playing with range balls on the golf course. Whatever was cheap was good. The range I went to had a mix of all ball brands, stamped with a red line on them. I had no shame in sticking a few of the better balls into my pocket. Walking onto the range is another matter, but using range balls is a very poor man's way of playing golf. Especially if you hacked like I did, and would lose 20+ balls a round.
post #6 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

The local range we have is a less than perfect range and the balls are not "marked" with the range line. Sometimes you find one that is a keeper, but at the same time all of the balls in my bag that I really don't care to play with find their way down range. So it's give and take I guess. I mean trading a nxt tour for a pinnacle is a good trade any day of the week.
post #7 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

at my course there is no need, any balls found by the marshals are put in a bucket and juniors are allowed to just grab some.
post #8 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

There is a really nice course a couple of hours away where the range balls are all ProV1's and they are not range balls. I have seen people putting them in their pockets. At my home course, I am sure some of the members keep a few range balls to use on "over water" shots as I find them scattered around in odd places near the ponds.
post #9 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by cdriver View Post
There is a really nice course a couple of hours away where the range balls are all ProV1's and they are not range balls. I have seen people putting them in their pockets. At my home course, I am sure some of the members keep a few range balls to use on "over water" shots as I find them scattered around in odd places near the ponds.
WOW, a range of all pro v1's. That must have cost sooo much $$$$$.
post #10 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by cdriver View Post
There is a really nice course a couple of hours away where the range balls are all ProV1's and they are not range balls. I have seen people putting them in their pockets. At my home course, I am sure some of the members keep a few range balls to use on "over water" shots as I find them scattered around in odd places near the ponds.
I think that is a superbly dumb idea to have pro v1's as range balls.
post #11 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

At my home course, the range is between two holes, so when players hit their tee shots way right or way left they end up in the range, which means their nice balls get scooped up and put back into the buckets. When I hit a bucket, I grab all the nice balls in the bucket and throw them in my "grab bag". My grab bag consists of a pouch of anywhere from 5-20 balls that are usable for my friends who routinely run out of balls and ask me for some of mine. As for regular range balls, nah I leave them. Sometimes when I'm waiting to hit an approach shot I'll take my wedge and open the face and try to hit them real high over the nets back into the range.
post #12 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

I've purchased a bucket of range balls and then hit them off the mountain side at my moms house before. But they arent worth using during a round if your good enough to notice the difference. My dad uses range balls during rounds sometimes 1. because he's cheap. and 2. because he's not good enough to care what he plays.
post #13 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Back several years ago when I was unemployed and had severely limited funds for golf, I would go to my local range which also had an excellent chipping and pitching area.

I would buy a small bucket and often supplement that with additional balls I would gather from around the chipping green if it was clear they been left by someone previously. After practicing my short game I might then hit these balls down range with my irons and driver. Obviously, I might save a buck or two on balls hit down range via my "gathering strategy". I never abused this to the extent that many guys did, gathering gargantuan buckets of free balls without paying for them.

Rarely, if I got tired or needed to leave, I might stuff some unused balls in my bag, knowing full well that I was coming back tomorrow and that the balls were coming with me to be left at their rightful home.

If you only saw me take the balls, you would probably assuming I was stealing them. But again, they were coming back within a day or two at most.

It was never about stealing balls for regular rounds of golf elsewhere. Thankfully, I was never that poor.
post #14 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

While I haven't done it recently, the only reason I can see is for those days when I want to hit a few shags into the corn field behind my house without going all the way to the range. I wouldn't bother stealing them to use when actually playing a round.
post #15 of 34
Thread Starter 

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by Dent View Post
at my course there is no need, any balls found by the marshals are put in a bucket and juniors are allowed to just grab some.
I really like this idea. When my shag bag is full - it's almost there - I think I'm going to put balls aside that would've gone in there until I have a dozen or so, and then I'm going to suggest this to my home course, and I'll donate a starting few.
post #16 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

This thread kinda surprises me. Taking range balls marked "range balls" is flat out stealing.

For all the grief that is given about following rules ( don't roll your ball etc ) and it being a game of honor, stealing is by far a worse infraction.


Just an observation on my part.
post #17 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

Originally Posted by Shindig View Post
I really like this idea. When my shag bag is full - it's almost there - I think I'm going to put balls aside that would've gone in there until I have a dozen or so, and then I'm going to suggest this to my home course, and I'll donate a starting few.
Yeah, good idea. Here's another one I witnessed recently. I played with a dude who rode a cart single while the other three of us walked. On every hole with water he would ride ahead and start fishing for balls with his ball retriever. I commented to him about it once, and he said a few months ago he sent 30-something dozen balls to the troops over in Iraq. Not exactly on topic, but the story about shag balls for juniors reminded me of it.
post #18 of 34

Re: Stealing Range Balls - I don't get it

I get my golf balls from a guy who collects logos - so he has thousands of pretty decent balls in his house. (Correct that, hundreds of thousands, I'll be damned...) I get 25 dozen in a crate for only $20, and it's a pretty good mix of Top Flites, Pinnacles, Maxflis, and the occasional Nike or Titleist. About 80 percent of them are good enough to be used on the golf course (not yellowed, clearly waterlogged, range balls, or simply scuffed up).

So, I don't really care about losing balls anymore, if I find a good ball at the range that was clearly mixed in (the driving range at my course has golf holes on all sides), I wont hesitate to pick it up. They use really ugly yellow range balls there, but occasionally a Pro V1 will get mixed in. It belongs in my pocket.
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