Over the last few months, I've become interested in designing, manufacturing, and building golf clubs.
I do not have an engineering background, nor any special aptitude with physics or math, so this could be a short-lived venture! I do think I have an idea for a putter, though, and I'm going to build it and test it, both on course and at a putt lab.
After that, or perhaps during, I'm going to try and cast some iron heads. I've got a design for those, too, but I'm going to have to get more proficient at the autoCAD software I'm using so that I can render a proper 3D model. I reached out to Jeff Sheets last Friday, at jeffsheetsgolf.com, but as of this writing he had not responded, so I might have to find someone else.
That has been a struggle -- finding websites that have the more granular information and guidance that I need, especially when it comes to drivers being made. There's plenty of videos on the forging and casting process of irons, but I haven't found anything on the production of drivers/fairway woods, which has been pretty annoying. I assume a lot the difficulty is that the processes involved are proprietary.
Bombtech Golf has been a big source of inspiration -- both in specifics (I love their story), and in general, as its led me to the world of smaller golf brands, of which I knew very little. I hope that I can make something worthwhile at a good price, and if I'm lucky, maybe make a little money, too.
I'll probably be posting things in this blog, documenting my progress as I go. The next thing I post will probably be a crude prototype of the putter I'm working on!
Stuff I've Enjoyed So Far
- digging into golf manufacturing overseas, especially China and Vietnam.
- finding one thousand four piece golf balls for $600 at a Chinese factory.
- learning that you cannot arc weld titanium to carbon steel, but you can friction or resistance weld it.
- friction welding: "solid-state welding process that generates heat through mechanical friction between workpieces in relative motion to one another, with the addition of a lateral force called "upset" to plastically displace and fuse the materials."
- resistance welding: "joining of metals by applying pressure and passing current for a length of time through the metal area which is to be joined"
Should be an interesting journey, at the least!