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Sandy Divot

Cost of Irons in the Late 70s

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My college roommate used to work in the bag room of a country club on weekends in the late 70s. On busy weekends, I'd go to help out. I remember members walking into the pro shop, and saying, "Hey Pro, order a set of Hogans, or Hey Pro order a set of Staffs for me." Most of the time the guy had just finished a round, and hadn't even hit the clubs. I was just wondering how much a set of premium irons cost back then?

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Around $150-300 for an iron set. As always depends on the brand.

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In 1973, my dad bought me a complete set of PowerBuilt Citation clubs, irons and woods for $200

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Late 70's to early 80's.  if talking about a premium set of irons 3-PW typically, will MSRP from $600-$800.  I bought most of my new iron set from this local brick and mortar discount store averaging about $500 per set plus tax.

Ben Hogan Apex was at a discounted price of $699, around $80-$85 per club.  Later on the Nationwide mega store like Edwin Watts came on the scene, of course much later the ecommerce took over.

Nt much choice for customizing the iron sets either.  Came either regular or stiff in steel shafts and in the 80's came the graphite shafts.  Into the 90's there were a few sets of irons came from the OEM +1"....... if any golfer wants lie angle adjusted or different size of grips, be the aftermarket add on.  Ping was the first one that offers different lie angle and grip size from the ordered sets.

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19 minutes ago, Release said:

Late 70's to early 80's.  if talking about a premium set of irons 3-PW typically, will MSRP from $600-$800.  I bought most of my new iron set from this local brick and mortar discount store averaging about $500 per set plus tax.

Ben Hogan Apex was at a discounted price of $699, around $80-$85 per club.  Later on the Nationwide mega store like Edwin Watts came on the scene, of course much later the ecommerce took over.

Nt much choice for customizing the iron sets either.  Came either regular or stiff in steel shafts and in the 80's came the graphite shafts.  Into the 90's there were a few sets of irons came from the OEM +1"....... if any golfer wants lie angle adjusted or different size of grips, be the aftermarket add on.  Ping was the first one that offers different lie angle and grip size from the ordered sets.

A lot of the top clubs back then were forged, so loft and lie adjustments were pretty easy to make. I remember hearing about guys adjusting the lie by pounding clubs on cart paths. I was talking to someone about buying drivers back in the old days. You just found a persimmon that looked good, and it usually came with a True Temper stiff or regular shaft. I don’t even remember drivers having lofts on the club until metal woods came out.

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13 hours ago, Sandy Divot said:

A lot of the top clubs back then were forged, so loft and lie adjustments were pretty easy to make. I remember hearing about guys adjusting the lie by pounding clubs on cart paths. I was talking to someone about buying drivers back in the old days. You just found a persimmon that looked good, and it usually came with a True Temper stiff or regular shaft. I don’t even remember drivers having lofts on the club until metal woods came out.

I had read about the changing the lie angle by pounding the iron head on the pavement, but had never seen this happen in person.  Most the golfers I had been associated with,would respect the equipment they use.  Also because the dollar value is much higher back then.  A college grad starting salary was around $15,000, and a newly certified CPA starting at $23,000 per year.  So a $600 set of irons comparatively speaking is like over $2,000 for today's money.

We eyeball the lofts on the persimmon drivers if the measuring is not readily available.  The majority of the drivers came in between 9-11 degrees of loft.   Most of the irons were forged if not all of them except for Ping and a few off brands, although major OEM like Titleist did make a few models of cast iron sets .  Loft and lie adjustment for the iron sets were free if you bought the clubs from the location, the guy would just take the clubs to the back of the shop and came out within 30 min., all done.  No spec sheets or nothing, just take them out to the attached driving range and hit a bucket of range balls then make additional adjustment if needed.  Although, usually they won't fuzz about making additional adjustment within a reasonable time period. 

Golfer's ability always trump the equipment...... not like today, the golfers are more into numbers off the spreadsheet and forgot that they are not as consistent as a robot.   Equipment is like jewelry, it enhance the natural beauty of a person, but could never mask the truth.  

 

 

Edited by Release

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1 hour ago, Release said:

Equipment is like jewelry, it enhance the natural beauty of a person, but could never mask the truth.

You've never played SGI irons then. You can take a fairly inconsistent golfer and turn them into something workable with a proper fit on the right clubs.

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4 hours ago, Bonvivant said:

You've never played SGI irons then. You can take a fairly inconsistent golfer and turn them into something workable with a proper fit on the right clubs.

Yes I have many sets of golf clubs and including the GI and SGI irons.

No golf clubs will make a 25 handicap index holder become a 15 over night.  The golf game is not some game that one can use token to buy a better game.  You'll ge3t out what you put into it.  Most of the time.

Like any other sports, there is the factor of the limitation form one's physical makeup.  That's the second factor involving those whom wish to become the top 1% in the world.  Some of us will never get there, no matter how hard we practice and no matter which golf club we use ( conforming ).

A 25 index holder will play like a 25 if the posted scores were not fudged.  No golf club can change his index to a 15 over night.

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I bought a set of Titleist Tour Model forged irons 3-PW with True Temper Dynamic shafts in 1984 for $325. I bought a Palmer Peerless driver for $99.I added Titleist 3 and 5 woods for $40 each.  I got a Bulls Eye putter for $18. I could have bought Wilson Staff irons for about $340 for the set.

Really premium clubs then were Haig Ultras or Ping Eye 2s. A similar 3-PW set was under $400.

Custom fitting didn't happen, but your pro had a loft and lie bending machine and would adjust your loft and lie for you.

 

Edited by Leek

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BTW, would someone who had a chance to game these sets for awhile , please, give us some feedback and post photos of your set ?

 

 

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