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Are Range Balls 15% Shorter?


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The short answer, yes. Many are limited flight to begin with and then progressively get less aerodynamic as they get used. Some nice clubs though will have Titleist NXTs or even Pro-V1s on their range and when those are close to new, they will typically fly their normal distance. Those though will deteriorate as time goes by obviously. The richer the club the more often they're replaced.

Most public ranges have pretty beat up range balls, so yea you should expect them to fly shorter and sometimes even weirdly. They're designed for durability so thousands of golfers can use them, but that reduces how far they will typically travel, even when they're brand new.

Edited by JetFan1983
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Not even considering limited flight balls, seeing how beat up the range balls at the courses I go to are (sometimes there are a few that are clearly not even round anymore), I wouldn't be surprised.

I don't hit balls at the range very often at all, maybe once or twice a year. When I do hit balls at the range, I focus more on ball flight patterns and quality of strike, rather than distance.

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  • iacas changed the title to Are Range Balls 15% Shorter?
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@JetFan1983 gave you a good answer. Range balls tend to be either (or both):

  • Really beat up and old, with diminished dimples.
  • Limited flight on purpose.

Use the range to practice or to warm up, not to judge your distances for the day or anything like that.

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The course I previously worked at had full distance srixon range balls. My current course has srixon flight limited balls. Through some messing around with mevo and both types of range ball, it came really close to 10% less carry on long clubs. Short clubs/wedges were actually pretty close, energy transfer is already low  

We order new range balls every year.  Many people hate used looking balls. Having new ones makes the experience a lot better. 

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Thank you for your replies. Today I had my laser range finder and used it for the first time on the range. With the rangefinder, I was horrified to find out that the 240 yard sign is only 210 yard away. May be the owner mislabeled the sign on purpose. I had been hitting my driver for a while here and usually carry to near the 240 yard sign and believed that I carry 230 yard which reflects what I see on the course.

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2 hours ago, khalespace said:

May be the owner mislabeled the sign on purpose.

I always believed that was standard practice, that they adjust the yardage signs to account for the reduced ball flight?

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5 hours ago, Coder said:

I always believed that was standard practice, that they adjust the yardage signs to account for the reduced ball flight?

Right - maybe your range did that. If it reflects what you see on the course, then maybe it’s just that.

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One of the differences between my old home courses and my new club is the range. 

The old range was actually one of Kittyhawk's better features. The place was huge and we had standard issue (if clearly used) golf balls to hit. There was no significant difference in distance. My new range at Miami Shores has much nicer turf but is smaller. A big hitter would put normal balls in the corn, so they use the limited flight balls. 

Threw me for a loop early on, but I've gotten used to it.

 

 

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13 hours ago, phillyk said:

The course I previously worked at had full distance srixon range balls. My current course has srixon flight limited balls. Through some messing around with mevo and both types of range ball, it came really close to 10% less carry on long clubs. Short clubs/wedges were actually pretty close, energy transfer is already low  

We order new range balls every year.  Many people hate used looking balls. Having new ones makes the experience a lot better. 

How about ordering some Titleist range balls, setting them aside from the bulk container, and charging a premium for a bucket of them for use on the range.  

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48 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

How about ordering some Titleist range balls, setting them aside from the bulk container, and charging a premium for a bucket of them for use on the range.  

How much are you willing to pay?  Haha 

Its an interesting idea. It would be a little annoying to constantly sort through balls after picking but to hit some good balls would be nice. The 1 rule would be irons only I think, with the woods and ability of some to lose balls over the fence in summer. I doubt we’d order a ton so we don’t want to be losing a couple balls every bucket. I do know a private course that has regular balls for irons and limited flight for woods specifically for not losing balls past the fence  

Regarding yardage signs with limited flight, I’d prefer the placement to be at actual yardage.

Edited by phillyk
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20 minutes ago, phillyk said:

How much are you willing to pay?  Haha 

Its an interesting idea. It would be a little annoying to constantly sort through balls after picking but to hit some good balls would be nice. The 1 rule would be irons only I think, with the woods and ability of some to lose balls over the fence in summer. I doubt we’d order a ton so we don’t want to be losing a couple balls every bucket. I do know a private course that has regular balls for irons and limited flight for woods specifically for not losing balls past the fence  

Regarding yardage signs with limited flight, I’d prefer the placement to be at actual yardage.

The premium would cover the extra labor to separate the balls.  I'd go up $3 or $4 from my usual bucket.  But I wouldn't use them all the time... just when I want to see true flight, true distance and when gauging club distance.

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A range near me has Srixon practice balls that they say are true flight. My MEVO and range work there seems to confirm that. They replace the balls each year. 

The other range I go to in the same town has balls that have been hit a minimum of 4338 times from the look of them. Then, they run them over in the parking lot with a semi to get that out-of-round look I love so well,.

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Just now, boogielicious said:

A range near me has Srixon practice balls that they say are true flight. My MEVO and range work there seems to confirm that. They replace the balls each year. 

The other range I go to in the same town has balls that have been hit a minimum of 4338 times from the look of them. Then, they run them over in the parking lot with a semi to get that out-of-round look I love so well,.

I especially like the range balls with the dimples beaten off them.  That way I can practice my knuckle ball shots.

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