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Club Champion Clubs are Expensive


allenc
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I had a free afternoon so I thought it would be fun to make an appointment at the nearby fitting studio Club Champion for an iron fitting.  I wasn’t sure I would necessarily buy anything but that possibility was on the table.

This isn’t going to be a thorough review of their fitting process, but I’ll say it was very nice.  They spent at least 1 1/2 hours not including warm up time, had massive numbers of heads and shafts, and my fitter seemed knowledgeable and attentive.

A few details that came to light is that the 6 iron on my current set is 4* too strong.  And my 8 iron is 2* too strong.  I knew my 6 iron was my worst iron and now I discovered why.  I’d also lost my 5 iron and just played around with the loft settings on a few hybrids to try and cover the gap.  (I actually already know I’d lost my 5 iron).  All of that and the fact that I’ve had them for maybe 8 years convinces me to go ahead and replace the set sooner than later.

So on to what they are trying to sell me.  The specs of my fitted irons obviously give me better launch monitor readings than any other combinations, including of course my own.  The last bit practically goes without saying since they use the 6 irons for comparisons.  What they do is order a built set of clubs from the OEM at retail price.  Then they buy your shafts and grips, pull out the shafts that the clubs came with and throw them away, install and pure your new shafts and grips.  Then check all the loft and lie angles and bend them if necessary.  You also get a lifetime of loft and lie checking and adjustment if they get out of whack.

For all this you spend about double what you would from the manufacturer even with with upgraded shafts.  Here’s the breakdown:

7 irons:  ~ $800 (Mizuno JPX900)

shafts installed: $100 * 7 (Paterson KG950-IRT30 Taper)

grips: $10 * 7

shafts pured:  $30 * 7

Plus tax equals just under $2000.

Definitely seems excessive.  I’m buying a whole extra set of shafts and grips and labor from the manufacture that I don’t use.  For all I know Club Champion even reuses those shafts to install in other clubs.  I looked up my shaft and they have a retail value of $60.  So they are charging me $40 per shaft to install PLUS and extra $30 for puring, which seems like just part of the installation.

So here are some options I’m thinking of.

1.  I know a very good independent club builder about an hour away — I can ask him what he’ll charge for the same thing.  Still won’t be cheap since he’d have to buy the full clubs and shafts.

2.  I can ask the above if he know some component heads that are very similar to the one’s I was fitted into.  That would be a big saving and less wasteful.  The components are unlikely to have the Boron/Chromoly/Kryptonite that Mizuno uses and might not perform exactly the same or look as nice.

3.  I can find out if any of the shafts Mizuno offers have very similar characteristics as the shafts I was fitted for and just order from them.  Then still have the loft and lies checked when I get them.  This would be the cheapest but I wouldn’t get them pured (how important is that?) and I’ve already glanced at the specs they provide for their graphite shafts and they don’t quite seem the same as my Kevlar (lol?) shafts.

4.  Stop nitting around and just do it.

What do you think?

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Man, that's just for irons too.  Wow, tough decision but I'd LOVE to have that done with all of my clubs.  Not sure about a $3000 price tag though.  But just imagine what that could do for your game.

If you got the dough, go for it, if not don't.  Definitely a splurge thing for me so I'll look into it when I have an extra 2 or 3 grand around.  Prolly be a couple years with all the expenses I still have today.  One more kid still on the payroll.

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I work at a place that does a lot of fittings and Mizuno allows free shafts and grip upgrades within reason for a flat rate around $1200 (which includes custom lie and loft). It's one of the few brands that does this so I'm surprised that they charged you so much per club.

On top of that, unless you got some exotic graphite iron shafts, most standard steel shafts range in price from $40-65 per shaft. It sounds like you'd be better off taking the fitting info and ordering the clubs straight from the Mizuno factory.

My only guess to why they charge what they do is because they do all of the assembly and bending themselves. They must also order the shafts separately instead of through Mizuno. Unless the prices include the fitting which would seem a bit weird to me.

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21 minutes ago, Mop Bucket said:

I work at a place that does a lot of fittings and Mizuno allows free shafts and grip upgrades within reason for a flat rate around $1200 (which includes custom lie and loft). It's one of the few brands that does this so I'm surprised that they charged you so much per club.

On top of that, unless you got some exotic graphite iron shafts, most standard steel shafts range in price from $40-65 per shaft. It sounds like you'd be better off taking the fitting info and ordering the clubs straight from the Mizuno factory.

My only guess to why they charge what they do is because they do all of the assembly and bending themselves. They must also order the shafts separately instead of through Mizuno. Unless the prices include the fitting which would seem a bit weird to me.

So Mizuno will build you clubs with (almost) any shaft you can name even if it is not listed as one of the available shafts on their website?  And yes, Club Champion builds the entire club for you and that is why they charge so much.  According to them the manufacturers' workmanship can be fairly iffy and theirs is great and that is how they are trying to convince you to buy from them.

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$3000 for golf clubs......that much could buy a decent holiday away. 

I know they have to take into account the base clubs, the extra's (replacement shafts, grips etc.) then the consumables plus add on the labour but yeah 3 grand sounds a lot. 

But then again, im a tight Yorkshireman. I get annoyed when i go to a bar in london and they charge me £6 or so for a pint :mad:

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1. If money was no object, I would go through them. For $2K (why is everybody saying $3K, did I miss something??) you are getting customization and very good aftermarket quality check and adjustment. Yes, manf. QA can be iffy but I doubt if it is significant at all. Still, you will have peace of mind. Ask them if the cost will include annual checks and adjustments to loft and specifically lie which forged clubs can change depending upon the beating. For that much money they would/should. Again, if money was no object then this is top notch and certainly one cannot go wrong. There is one added benefit though - if you wanted to tweak anything after a few of rounds, you can have done this in person (I would).

2. If money was object, then I would go with option 3. Still a VERY good set if you can find the shaft equivalence from Mizuno. I would think they would. Spine puring can make a half a yard worth of difference as far as yardage gaps between irons if even that with good base quality shafts, so it is not a terrible sacrifice at all. Ask Mizuno though. It might be included.

Have fun! 

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9 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

1. If money was no object, I would go through them. For $2K (why is everybody saying $3K, did I miss something??) you are getting customization and very good aftermarket quality check and adjustment. Yes, manf. QA can be iffy but I doubt if it is significant at all. Still, you will have peace of mind. Ask them if the cost will include annual checks and adjustments to loft and specifically lie which forged clubs can change depending upon the beating. For that much money they would/should. Again, if money was no object then this is top notch and certainly one cannot go wrong. There is one added benefit though - if you wanted to tweak anything after a few of rounds, you can have done this in person (I would).

2. If money was object, then I would go with option 3. Still a VERY good set if you can find the shaft equivalence from Mizuno. I would think they would. Spine puring can make a half a yard worth of difference as far as yardage gaps between irons if even that with good base quality shafts, so it is not a terrible sacrifice at all. Ask Mizuno though. It might be included.

Have fun! 

Haha, no you are right. The OP did say $2k, unless the prices have increased dramatically in the last hour. either way $2k still buys a nice holiday (just a bit sloser to home). As you may guess i can hear my wifes voice in the back of my mind "you better not spend all that on silly clubs. Take me and the kids somewhere nice!"

But i agree, money no object then sure i'd pimp them out even more!

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4 minutes ago, RussUK said:

Haha, no you are right. The OP did say $2k, unless the prices have increased dramatically in the last hour. either way $2k still buys a nice holiday (just a bit sloser to home). As you may guess i can hear my wifes voice in the back of my mind "you better not spend all that on silly clubs. Take me and the kids somewhere nice!"

But i agree, money no object then sure i'd pimp them out even more!

Well, you gotta take her and the kids somewhere nice FIRST for it to even be a serious conversation. :-)

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1 hour ago, GolfLug said:

1. If money was no object, I would go through them. For $2K (why is everybody saying $3K, did I miss something??) you are getting customization and very good aftermarket quality check and adjustment. Yes, manf. QA can be iffy but I doubt if it is significant at all. Still, you will have peace of mind. Ask them if the cost will include annual checks and adjustments to loft and specifically lie which forged clubs can change depending upon the beating. For that much money they would/should. Again, if money was no object then this is top notch and certainly one cannot go wrong. There is one added benefit though - if you wanted to tweak anything after a few of rounds, you can have done this in person (I would).

2. If money was object, then I would go with option 3. Still a VERY good set if you can find the shaft equivalence from Mizuno. I would think they would. Spine puring can make a half a yard worth of difference as far as yardage gaps between irons if even that with good base quality shafts, so it is not a terrible sacrifice at all. Ask Mizuno though. It might be included.

Have fun! 

The OP used $2000 as the price for the irons.  Someone else mentioned that if you throw in the rest of the set, the price could jump up to ~$3000 total.

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3 minutes ago, djfajt71 said:

The OP used $2000 as the price for the irons.  Someone else mentioned that if you throw in the rest of the set, the price could jump up to ~$3000 total.

Don't see it. He said $800 for 7 irons which sounds about right for JPX800s.

2 hours ago, allenc said:

For all this you spend about double what you would from the manufacturer even with with upgraded shafts.  Here’s the breakdown:

7 irons:  ~ $800 (Mizuno JPX900)

shafts installed: $100 * 7 (Paterson KG950-IRT30 Taper)

grips: $10 * 7

shafts pured:  $30 * 7

Plus tax equals just under $2000.

 

 

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@GolfLug  Here's the totality of the OP and follow-up that I was referring to.

2 hours ago, allenc said:

For all this you spend about double what you would from the manufacturer even with with upgraded shafts.  Here’s the breakdown:

7 irons:  ~ $800 (Mizuno JPX900)

shafts installed: $100 * 7 (Paterson KG950-IRT30 Taper)

grips: $10 * 7

shafts pured:  $30 * 7

Plus tax equals just under $2000.

 

2 hours ago, Gunther said:

Man, that's just for irons too.  Wow, tough decision but I'd LOVE to have that done with all of my clubs.  Not sure about a $3000 price tag though.  But just imagine what that could do for your game.

If you got the dough, go for it, if not don't.  Definitely a splurge thing for me so I'll look into it when I have an extra 2 or 3 grand around.  Prolly be a couple years with all the expenses I still have today.  One more kid still on the payroll.

 

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I did a very similar thing with a company called "cool clubs" back in 2012.  I decided to splurge then because I hadn't bought irons since 1997 and I wanted it done "perfectly."  So I went the whole nine yards and got them to do the build and the puring and all that jazz.  I got Ping i20s and the price tag was pretty much what you are being quoted for your Mizunos.

Sure, it's excessive, but if you're only buying irons every 15 years, then who cares, right? :-P

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33 minutes ago, djfajt71 said:

The OP used $2000 as the price for the irons.  Someone else mentioned that if you throw in the rest of the set, the price could jump up to ~$3000 total.

 

28 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

Don't see it. He said $800 for 7 irons which sounds about right for JPX800s.

 

 

3 hours ago, Gunther said:

Man, that's just for irons too.  Wow, tough decision but I'd LOVE to have that done with all of my clubs.  Not sure about a $3000 price tag though.  But just imagine what that could do for your game.

If you got the dough, go for it, if not don't.  Definitely a splurge thing for me so I'll look into it when I have an extra 2 or 3 grand around.  Prolly be a couple years with all the expenses I still have today.  One more kid still on the payroll.

It might be $3000 for a full set if I just got their irons, then got all the rest of the clubs from GolfSmith.  My guess is that the entire bag from Club Champions would be $4000 - $5000.  Who know what exotic shaft they're going to hook up to your $400 driver?  You'll get some $250 fairways and hybrids with their own $100 shaft upgrades tacked on.  The wedge shafts may be the same as the irons for $100 each over the wedge price.  And a $400 milled putter to top it off.  Oh, and you have to pure everything for $30 a club of course.

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13 minutes ago, allenc said:

 

 

It might be $3000 for a full set if I just got their irons, then got all the rest of the clubs from GolfSmith.  My guess is that the entire bag from Club Champions would be $4000 - $5000.  Who know what exotic shaft they're going to hook up to your $400 driver?  You'll get some $250 fairways and hybrids with their own $100 shaft upgrades tacked on.  The wedge shafts may be the same as the irons for $100 each over the wedge price.  And a $400 milled putter to top it off.  Oh, and you have to pure everything for $30 a club of course.

Ok, since this is a value study then at $4K-$5K level my opinion posted shouldn't matter much as I wouldn't even dream of spending that kinda money on even a full bag of clubs unless I was playing a pro minor league.

6 minutes ago, JxQx said:

If you do go through with having them do all of it definitely ask to keep the shafts they are pulling. That's $100-$150 they are throwing away for no reason.

And sell it on ebay for a grand total of $100 or something?...

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54 minutes ago, Golfingdad said:

I did a very similar thing with a company called "cool clubs" back in 2012.  I decided to splurge then because I hadn't bought irons since 1997 and I wanted it done "perfectly."  So I went the whole nine yards and got them to do the build and the puring and all that jazz.  I got Ping i20s and the price tag was pretty much what you are being quoted for your Mizunos.

Sure, it's excessive, but if you're only buying irons every 15 years, then who cares, right? :-P

Would love to.  Something I do do, however, is get the lofts and lies checked every 2 or 3 seasons.  It's cheap and can really make a difference. I've done it twice now and most clubs require a tweak or 2 but both times my 7I was the most out of whack.  Odd, maybe coincidence or maybe I dig that into the ground more than others, I dunno.  

But my point is, if you did this 4 years ago, it would be a good idea to get lofts and lies checked, if you haven't already.  I don't know if trued shafts can become untrued, detrued, anti-trued?  But I'd imagine so.  They may be able to check that too.

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13 minutes ago, Gunther said:

Would love to.  Something I do do, however, is get the lofts and lies checked every 2 or 3 seasons.  It's cheap and can really make a difference. I've done it twice now and most clubs require a tweak or 2 but both times my 7I was the most out of whack.  Odd, maybe coincidence or maybe I dig that into the ground more than others, I dunno.  

But my point is, if you did this 4 years ago, it would be a good idea to get lofts and lies checked, if you haven't already.  I don't know if trued shafts can become untrued, detrued, anti-trued?  But I'd imagine so.  They may be able to check that too.

You're probably right, it wouldn't hurt to check.

As I understand the trued or pured shafts, all it means is that they figure out the best way to align them related to the club head (honestly, it's probably a bit of hooey, but it was a drop in the bucket relative to the price I was paying so I said what the heck) ... so I imagine as long as the shafts don't come unglued, then they should remain "pured."  I guess. :)

Regarding the lofts and lies, is it common for any clubs to do that, or is it mostly a problem for forged irons because they are "softer" metal?  

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3 minutes ago, Golfingdad said:

You're probably right, it wouldn't hurt to check.

As I understand the trued or pured shafts, all it means is that they figure out the best way to align them related to the club head (honestly, it's probably a bit of hooey, but it was a drop in the bucket relative to the price I was paying so I said what the heck) ... so I imagine as long as the shafts don't come unglued, then they should remain "pured."  I guess. :)

Regarding the lofts and lies, is it common for any clubs to do that, or is it mostly a problem for forged irons because they are "softer" metal?  

Interesting about pured shafts, I know really nothing about it, never had it done but sure sounds damned important.  Probably 2 points off my index right there.

I have R7 TP irons, which are cast and even they get a little out of whack over 3 seasons or so.  I can only imagine forged would be more significant.

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