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Quick rules question

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The other day i was in a greenside bunker and one of my partners was in the fairway. I walked into the bunker to wait for him to hit. As i was waiting, i took out a tee to clean my grooves. When my partner hit, i looked up and accidentally dropped my tee into the bunker. I presumed to pick it up but had no clue if it was a breach of the rules. I know if your club touches the sand its a penalty, but my question is, is a dropping a tee considered testing the conditions?

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that's a good question, bump

actually, two good questions here, the second being, is it ok to clean your grooves in the middle of a round?

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that's a good question, bump

i know cleaning your grooves is fine, sharpening idono, but you can certainly clean your club lol.

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A tee is a movable obstruction (manufactured, man-made) you can remove movable obstructions anywhere on the course. You can remove rakes from bunkers, trash, etc... anything man-made or manufactured.

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A tee is a movable obstruction (manufactured, man-made) you can remove movable obstructions anywhere on the course. You can remove rakes from bunkers, trash, etc... anything man-made or manufactured.

but it was not already there, he dropped it into the bunker (purposely or not, its still dropping it) so whats the call on that.

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but it was not already there, he dropped it into the bunker (purposely or not, its still dropping it) so whats the call on that.

He's fine. He accidentally dropped it, he didn't intentionally stick it in the sand. 13-4/0.5 Meaning of "Test the Condition of the Hazard" in Rule 13-4a Q. What is meant by "test the condition of the hazard" in Rule 13-4a? A. The term covers all actions by which the player could gain more information about the hazard than could be gained from taking his stance for the stroke to be made, bearing in mind that a certain amount of digging in with the feet in the sand or soil is permitted when taking the stance for a stroke. Examples of actions that would not constitute testing the condition of the hazard include the following: • digging in with the feet for a stance, including for a practice swing, anywhere in the hazard or in a similar hazard; • placing an object, such as clubs or a rake, in the hazard; • leaning on an object (other than a club) such as a rake while it is touching the ground in the hazard or water in a water hazard; • touching the hazard with an object (other than a club) such as a towel (touching with a club would be a breach of Rule 13-4b); or • marking the position of the ball with a tee or otherwise when proceeding under a Rule. Examples of actions that would constitute testing the condition of the hazard in breach of Rule 13-4a include the following: • digging in with the feet in excess of what would be done for a stance for a stroke or a practice swing; • filling in footprints from a previous stance (e.g., when changing stance to make a different type of stroke); • intentionally sticking an object, such as a rake, into sand or soil in the hazard or water in a water hazard (but see Rule 12-1); • smoothing a bunker with a rake, a club or otherwise (but see Exception 2 to Rule 13-4); • kicking the ground in the hazard or water in a water hazard; or • touching the sand with a club when making a practice swing in the hazard or in a similar hazard (but see Exception 3 to Rule 13-4). (New)

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No penalty. You are actually permitted, by the rules, to use a tee for marking your ball in a bunker, if it lies close to another players ball. The ball can be marked and lifted, but has to be positioned in the same place, with the same lie. You cannot rake or smooth out the divot the other player created.

You accidentally dropped the tee and just picked it up, that is not defined in the rules as testing the condition. If you threw the tee down intentionally into the sand, you may have breached a rule, but dropping it unintentionally is not a breach.

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No penalty. You are actually permitted, by the rules, to use a tee for marking your ball in a bunker, if it lies close to another players ball. The ball can be marked and lifted, but has to be positioned in the same place, with the same lie.

You can. A player is entitled to the lie he had when his ball stopped. Exceptions to this are changes caused by mother nature and the player himself (+ caddie). See Dec 20-3b/1:

Q: The balls of A and B are in the same heel mark in a bunker. B's ball is farther from the hole. A lifts his ball under Rule 22-2, and B plays and obliterates the heel mark. What should A do? A: Under Rule 20-3b, A is required to recreate his original lie as nearly as possible, including the heel mark, and place his ball in that lie. (Revised) Also 13-4/18 is pretty enlighting: Q: A player's partner, opponent or fellow-competitor plays a stroke from near a bunker and the divot comes to rest near the player's ball lying in the bunker. May the divot be removed? A: A player is entitled to the lie which his stroke gave him . Accordingly, in equity (Rule 1-4) the divot may be removed without penalty. The same would apply if the player's ball was lying in a water hazard.

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I phrased myself a bit wrong there, sorry. I did not mean a divot, but the hole in the sand created by another player hitting from the same area.

Let's say there are two balls in the bunker, being so close that you could risk hitting both if one was not marked and removed. If you marked and removed one ball, the other player hitting his, and the hole he created did not affect your lie, you are still not allowed to rake or smooth out the hole he created when swinging. If the ball was lying so close that your ball would end up in the hole of the other player, you are allowed to smooth it out, so to make the lie as close as possible to the way it was.

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I phrased myself a bit wrong there, sorry. I did not mean a divot, but the hole in the sand created by another player hitting from the same area.

What if your ball then is not extricated from the bunker but ends up in that particular hole that you did not smooth?

Each player is responsible for smoothing the bunker after his shot (see Etiquette), even if there are other balls in that same bunker. So if player A strikes and extricates his ball first he is not only allowed but required to smooth his holes and footprints before player B playes his shot. So the question whether player B is allowed to smooth holes made by A is somewhat imaginary.

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[QUOTE=Zeph;440375If you marked and removed one ball, the other player hitting his, and the hole he created did not affect your lie, you are still not allowed to rake or smooth out the hole he created when swinging. If the ball was lying so close that your ball would end up in the hole of the other player, you are allowed to smooth it out, so to make the lie as close as possible to the way it was.[/QUOTE]

Correct. Rule 20-3.iii(b) requires you to reconstruct the lie, so you would not normally be allowed to fix up your stance. But see below.
What if your ball then is not extricated from the bunker but ends up in that particular hole that you did not smooth?

Well, A is expected, but not "required" to smooth his holes and footprints after playing in the bunker. There is, as far as I know, no rule of golf that imposes any penalty for not doing so. If A is a raging douchebag, he could refuse to rake even when B requests it. Fortunately, when those footprints or divots have a reasonable possibility of affecting a subsequent stroke, B is empowered to rake for himself. The decision:

13-4/19 Condition of Bunker Altered by First Player to Play From It Q. The balls of A and B lie in the same bunker, with B's ball farther from the hole. B plays and his ball comes to rest nearer the hole than A's ball. Is A entitled to have the bunker restored to its original condition? A. Yes, provided there is a reasonable possibility that the area disturbed by B could affect a subsequent stroke by A. Accordingly, in equity (Rule 1-4), A would be entitled to restore this area of the bunker to its original condition by raking or other means. The bunker may be restored by anyone. If there was no reasonable possibility that the area disturbed by B could affect a subsequent stroke by A and A or his caddie raked the bunker prior to A's stroke, A would be in breach of Rule 13-4. In either case, B may rake the bunker (Exception 2 to Rule 13-4). A would incur no penalty if he asked B to rake the bunker. (Revised)

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Well, A is expected, but not "required" to smooth his holes and footprints after playing in the bunker. There is, as far as I know, no rule of golf that imposes any penalty for not doing so. If A is a raging douchebag, he could refuse to rake even when B requests it. Fortunately, when those footprints or divots have a reasonable possibility of affecting a subsequent stroke, B is empowered to rake for himself. The decision:

You're right, no obligation by the Rules. In presenting my view I was relying on players' obedience on the spirit of golf which, as you pointed out, may or may not be of worthy value...

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