Company Profile: Buzelli Putters

Company Profile: Buzelli Putters

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“Fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders. The most famous is ‘Never get involved in a land war in Asia,’ but only slightly less well-known is this: ‘Never start a putter company in this golf economy.'”
Vizzini, right before the iocane powder took effect.

By Dave Wolfe

Vizzini may have been a bit over-dramatic in his assessment of the golf industry, though his concerns are not inconceivable. Regardless, I think that most everyone can agree that the industry is in a state of flux. It could be improving, or it could still have some room to slide. Whatever the direction it moves, it’s definitely in a transitional state.

Opening any small business is a risky venture. The fledgling proprietor is full of dreams and aspirations, but must still face the business realities of cost and capital. It is even riskier when that business reality is unstable.

Thankfully, brave souls still venture forth and gamble their time, fortunes, and sanity on their dreams. Their beliefs and drives allow them to shove aside the doubts, and make their way into the markets with products that they believe in.

Introducing Buzelli Golf

Buzeli logo

Today’s brave entrepreneurial soul is Ryan Buzelli. Ryan is a mild-mannered flooring installer by day, but once that time clock is punched, his business turns to milled metal. This thirty-something family man installs floors to pay the bills, but his passion is putters.

So how did this all come to be, and what are Buzelli Golf all about? To answer this, I went to the man himself, Ryan Buzelli.

How did Buzelli Golf come into being?

As a child, I was brought up in baseball, as most normal kids are. It was a team sport with competitive attributes. My parents took me golfing a handful of times, but it didn’t stick. I couldn’t hit the ball for the life of me.

School was never a strong suit for me. I was a more of a hands-on type of guy. I wanted to jump into things without learning first. Trial and error is my preferred way. As a teenager, I was in rock bands, playing bass guitar. That continued till I was roughly 30 years old. Along the way, I created my own small time music studio in my garage. Enjoyable, but I knew there was something else. I dabbled with wine making at this point. Now I have 150 bottles of my creations in my basement. Very fun, but very boring.

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At that point, I started golfing with my best friend, and golf started to put its hooks in me. That’s all I wanted to do. That’s all I could think about. I loved the gratification of a well-struck iron, or a bomb drive, or a nice chip in for birdie. I knew there was something else. I still felt there was more.

I was a club junkie. I was buying clubs about every month. Using them, then selling them if I didn’t like the clubs. I actually made a few bucks on some of the sales, and it got my attention.

Most of the clubs and putters were old and beat up. So I started to refinish them. Media blasting, polishing, re-shafting, and re-gripping to make the classics into modern, yet still vintage, gamers once again. This filled my void for a year or two and again, I wanted even more.

I did OK reselling, but I wanted to make a dent in the golfing world. I thought maybe I could open my own golf store. I toyed that idea for a while. Selling other manufacturers clubs, yea that’s all well and good, but hey why don’t I make my own clubs?I love USA-made golf equipment, and I love milled putters. I had found the niche. So I started to look into steps to complete a putter of my own.

From Buzelli trademark, to the putter design, to my wonderful mill guy (he’s very supportive), to grips, shafts, marketing, shaft bands. Needless to say, it was a long journey to get my first completed putter.

What separates Buzelli putters from other putters?

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It was very difficult to find all USA manufacturers. The original concept was to mill in China. It would have been close to three times cheaper to buy there, but I knew I needed to stand out somehow. I am proud to make my putters here, and it shows. It took roughly six months to design, manufacture, and move all the pieces in place to make it happen. I actually recently started using PURE grips to add to my full USA-made putter. So I am always looking to better my equipment.

What is the process for ordering a Buzelli putter?

You can customize and purchase a Buzelli putter online at buzelligolf.com

Or contact me directly to discuss your putter at ryan@buzelligolf.com

All clubs are personally (i.e. by me) paint filled, assembled, packaged, marketed, designed, and adjusted to custom specs.

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What can a golfer expect when he or she games a Buzelli putter?

Golfers should expect quality number one. All components are top of the line and assembled by me. The putter is stable, pleasing sound and feel, easy to look at, limited glare. Not to mention, I will back the putter for life. I don’t cover normal wear and tear of course, but defects I will replace, or even regrip or reshaft for free, you just have to purchase the components. Customer satisfaction is important. I have answered every email sent to me, even ones with their hand out. I am dedicated to Buzelli Golf.

Customer satisfaction is important. I have answered every email sent to me, even ones with their hand out. I am dedicated to Buzelli Golf.

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Can you give us a glimpse of things to come at Buzelli?

As of right now I have only one design for a putter and a design for a divot tool. My plans are very large and I intend to take this passion to the grave. I do plan on designing a new model sometime next year along with adding a left-handed current model to the repertoire.

Maybe one day I can make my passion for golf my day job. Open a shop with CNC machines, design and mill all day long. I can only hope step two of my plan will go into effect sooner than later.

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More to follow…

A tip o’ the hat to Ryan Buzelli for having the vision and the stones, to take his shot in the putter business. I think that there are more than a few of us who have thought about starting a business, be it golf related or not, but only a select few follow through on their ideas. Again, that takes some stones.

Some of you may be thinking, enough of the biography, what about the putter? Has Ryan Buzelli actually produced a putter that will help him fulfill his dream, or at least allow him to pay his mortgage?

Fear not. We have the Buzelli STA-1 in hand, and we will give you the complete rundown on it in the near future. You will definitely want to check back in to see what that putter is all about. Perhaps you could even win one…

Find out more at buzelligolf.com

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)

Survey: 2015 Driver Predictions

Survey: 2015 Driver Predictions

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While there will no doubt be some surprises before next season is over, we’ve seen the lion’s share of what manufacturers will be putting on shelves to start 2015.

Now it’s time for them to sell it, and the rest of us to test (and buy) it. Everything on this list will be invited to participate in MyGolfSpy’s Most Wanted 2015 Driver Test.

Sales vs. Performance

Over the next several months, manufacturers will do anything and everything they can to get your attention. Nobody is going to gamble that they can coast through a short winter.

Big money will be spent on the PGA Tour, commercials, and whatever other means a given company believes will influence you to spend your money on its products.

You and I, we need to figure out how to navigate the advertising and find our way to those products that might actually benefit our games, because we all know that what sells best doesn’t always perform best.

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Make Your Prediction

Which do you think will be the best selling and the best performing drivers of 2015?

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)

Contest – Win The Next PIMP List Wedge

Contest – Win The Next PIMP List Wedge

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First, let me say a quick Thank You to all of you who kicked in theme ideas for the next #PimpList wedge.

The guys at Golf Alchemy are ready to get started bringing your ideas to life. Before they can, however; we need to select a winner from your Top 5 Submissions.

It’s time for the final vote.

The Giveaway

To be eligible fore the giveaway, all you need to do is vote for your favorite theme from the list of choices below. Once the final count is tallied, the guys at Golf Alchemy will create two wedges. One will be sent to MyGolfSpy to be kept in our vault. The other will go to one of you guys (selected at random) who vote for the eventual winner.

The winner will be selected at random.

Voting Ends 11/23/2014 at 12:01 AM Eastern Time. Basically, you have just over 1 week.

Vote Now

Mobile UsersClick Here

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)

Trademark Wars – Callaway vs. TaylorMade (2014 Edition)

Trademark Wars – Callaway vs. TaylorMade (2014 Edition)

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Written By: Tony Covey

The annual war of words, nay,the annual war for words between Callaway and TaylorMade has resumed. And no, this isn’t a repeat from last July.

If you’ve got a few minutes for a brief history lesson, I suggest you check out previous stories on the National Advertising Division’s (NAD) ruling on Callaway’s marketing of the RAZR Fit Extreme as the Longest Driver in Golf, as well as last season’s dueling Trademark claims on SLIDER (Callaway) and SLDR (TaylorMade).

This latest chapter begins with TaylorMade and Callaway filing Trademark applications for “XR” all of seven days apart.

In the interest of sweating the details, it should be pointed out that TaylorMade was actually the first to submit its filing. I don’t mean to imply that TaylorMade is in the right here, only that it was first to pull the trigger.

As I often do when these type of situations arise, I will now pause a moment for anyone who seriously wants to argue coincidence.

Anybody?

One of these companies is quite obviously screwing with the other.

Never mind who’s on first, who’s on top?

TaylorMade Screwing with Callaway?

callaway-xr-logoCallaway’s filing has a logo, and it’s worth mentioning that TaylorMade’s filing doesn’t. This proves absolutely nothing, but could suggest that when Callaway filed, they did so with actual intent.

Given that TaylorMade has just announced R15 and AeroBurner, it’s unlikely the company has any short to mid-term plans for anything called XR, while for Callaway, XR is next-in-the-pipeline, coming soon, kind of stuff.

I can’t state this as 100% indisputable fact, but I’ve heard that Callaway has…or maybe had every intent of calling the early 2015 successor to X2 Hot the Callaway XR.

If I have reason to believe that the next Callaway driver is going to be called XR, then it’s plenty reasonable to assume that TaylorMade knows it too. Why not try and beat Callaway to the punch…at least as far as the US Trademark office is concerned?

callaway-xr-app

Is TaylorMade simply trying to take advantage of what may be a later-than-it-should-have-been filing from Callaway?

It’s not hard to make a compelling argument that this is a case of TaylorMade trying to complicate things for its #1 rival, and perhaps force it to spend a little extra money in the process.

I could also argue that if these Trademark shenanigans actually delay the release of another Callaway driver or two, then TaylorMade might actually be doing Callaway a favor, but let’s save that one for another day.

Callaway Screwing with TaylorMade?

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If we’re going to consider accusing TaylorMade of corporate shenanigans, it’s equally fair to ask exactly what the hell Callaway might be thinking naming a line of clubs XR to begin with.

For those who don’t know, over the last 12 years or so, TaylorMade has produced a handful of non-conforming XR Series drivers for the Japanese market.

TaylorMade may not have included an XR logo in its Trademark filing because, well…they already have one. And since we’re being honest here, allowing for the fact that there are only so many ways to write XR; doesn’t Callaway’s look a bit like what TaylorMade already stamped on its clubs?

TMaG-XR

While TaylorMade’s XR isn’t as entrenched in our relatively mainstream consciousness as its R-Series (or Burner Series for that matter), from an apples to apples perspective, a Callaway XR driver wouldn’t be wholly dissimilar to something called a TaylorMade Legacy.

With a near limitless pool of potential product names to skim from, would Callaway seriously go with something that TaylorMade has already used?

At a time when Callaway is trying to differentiate the rest of the industry, recycling a name (even one that’s not particularly well-known) from its #1 competitor doesn’t make much sense either.

If the possibility that TaylorMade is screwing with Callaway is unsavory, the possibility that Callaway might be screwing with TaylorMade is just confusing.

TaylorMade-XR-app

No Comment

I reached out to representatives from both companies and both succinctly declined to comment for the record.

What I take from that is a likelihood that legal departments are probably already involved, and are likely exchanging threating letters on the regular.

Believe me when I tell you that legal departments, and these two in particular, absolutely thrive on sending letters.

These sort of disputes are far from uncommon in the golf industry, but anecdotal evidence suggests that they’re popping up more frequently between Callaway and TaylorMade.

How This Ends

We’ll have to wait to see how this plays out. My guess is that Callaway releases an XR Driver (or two or three) in the spring, but it’s probably going to take some behind the scenes horsetrading (the kind of stuff we’ll never hear about) to make any Trademark problems go away.

This latest clash speaks not only to the competitive nature of both companies, but also reaffirms everything we’ve learned over the last two years; at corporate level, these two really don’t like each other very much.

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)

The Perfect Putter – Putt Like You Train

The Perfect Putter – Putt Like You Train

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Win a Perfect Putter

You can win your very own Perfect Putter. Check the end of the article for details.

Effective Practice = Improved Performance

By Dave Wolfe
I guess that’s my spin on the old practice makes perfect adage. With golf, just practicing is not enough. We all know that it is totally possible to practice your swing without any resulting perfection. Blasting through a large bucket with a lousy swing is not somehow going to produce a good swing. Good, effective practice produces positive results.

Applying repeated sky marks to the driver does not.

Few of us practice putting as much as we should, and when we do practice, we may not actually be helping our game. Think about this scenario. You are on the practice green with a couple of balls. You drop the balls at your feet, read the putt, putt the first ball, and miss it left. Now knowing that it breaks left, you adjust your aim, and still miss left with the second, but by less this time. You adjust again and sink the third ball, feeling proud and confident in your improved putting ability.

Truth is, you seldom get two, let alone three, shots at a putt when you are playing a round. You read it wrong the first time, and you missed. You actually couldn’t get the break right until you rolled two balls. You made the third, but did your ability to see the break and read the putt actually improve with that practice session?

Learn To Read: It’s Fundamental

The first thing to do if you are really having trouble reading putts is to get help from an instructor. I am a firm believer in the AimPoint green reading system. I’ve taken a few classes, and I believe that the system just plain works. Don’t just take my word about AimPoint though, ask Adam Scott, Isaac Sanchez, or Stacy Lewis. Here is a photo I took at this year’s Fry’s Open showing Hunter Mahan and his caddy John Wood getting some green reading instruction from AimPoint instructor Peter Brown.

Mahan_Brown_AimPoint

Though I believe that my reads have improved because of AimPoint, practicing reads is still a bit challenging. When practicing, I don’t always know if I am making the correct read, and then executing the putt with a correct stroke.

Sure, the obvious feedback is that the ball goes in, but the ball also has a chance to go in if you make a bad read and then compensate with a bad stroke. I made the putt, but I didn’t really improve my reading, or my putting. The tight integration of reading and putting makes it difficult to practice either effectively.

What I really needed was a way to separate practicing my reads from practicing my putting mechanics?

The Perfect Putter “Putts” Perfectly

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So how can you truly know if you made the correct read and the correct putt? One way that you can check your read is by rolling balls at your target with your hand. If you have ever tried this, you know that it is very challenging to have one roll match the next. How will you know if your proposed read of six inches left is accurate if you are spraying balls all over the place? You need to know that the roll is accurate to assess your read.

That’s where the Perfect Putter comes in to the conversation. On the most basic level, the Perfect Putter is a metal ramp that rolls golf balls. It’s not challenging to use. You place the Perfect Putter on the green, place a ball on the ramp, and then let the ball go.

No moving parts, other than your ball, I suppose. If you want the ball to roll farther, place it higher on the ramp. You can figure out how to make the ball roll shorter. The ramp is even calibrated so you can ensure that you place the ball exactly where you want, time after time.

The Perfect Putter performs a very simple, yet potentially powerful job. It rolls the ball straight. Every time, exactly the same. Unlike the practicing golfer, there is no way that the roll of the ball from the Perfect Putter can be influenced by how the ball impacts the club. The Perfect Putter can’t slightly change its swing arc, or ball position. It can’t unknowingly cut across the ball at impact, imparting spin on the ball.

The Perfect Putter consistently rolls the ball perfectly.

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How will this help me putt better?

Improve Your Reads

Let’s say that you have taken a class covering the AimPoint Express Read methods. You now know where you should be aiming based upon your read. Normally, to practice this read, you put a tee in the green at your target spot and start hitting balls with your putter. What you are actually testing are two variables, your swing and your read.

The Perfect Putter takes your swing out of the equation. You can now aim the Perfect Putter at the target from your read, place a ball on the ramp at the appropriate distance calibration, and roll the ball. If it goes in, you know your read was correct. If it was incorrect, you know right away if you under or over read the break.

If you practice this way, you will effectively be able to assess and likely improve your reads. Yes, you do still need to practice, but your practice will be far more productive.

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Improve Your Putting

Let’s change gears and look at the other side of the putting story, actually putting the ball. Once you dial in the read with the Perfect Putter, you can now practice the putt, knowing with confidence that you are aimed at the right target. If you are missing the cup, you now know that it is because of your stroke, and not your read. This too should focus your practice, and yield improved results. Identifying the problem is a critical step toward fixing the problem.

Let me give you an example. In my garage, I have a 10-foot practice green. I recently had to move it around and when I got it back into place, I was sure that it wasn’t level. I checked it with a bubble level, and it looked OK, but balls I putted were just not rolling straight.

When the Perfect Putter showed up at my house, the first green I used it on was my practice green. Low and behold, it rolled straight. Long story short, I realized that I had picked up a bit of a cut across the ball when putting, adding spin at impact that looked like break when it rolled. The Perfect Putter helped me to realize this, and fix this previously unknown flaw. I blamed the green, but it was me, and I never would have known without the Perfect Putter.

 

About the Perfect Putter

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The Perfect Putter is a simple tool, but there is a whole bunch of engineering and precision in its construction. First, it is durable, made of non-corrosive 316 stainless steel. The steel sides of the Perfect Putter are bolted together at numerous positions, ensuring that the tracks that the ball rolls upon are straight, and parallel to each other. This thing is built to last.

The tracks can either be used in their bare metal form, or sheathed with the recommended silicone rail covers. It will work with or without the covers. You will just need to compensate for speed a bit if you go cover-free as the calibration is set for with-cover operation.

Speaking of calibration, the Perfect Putter also functions as a stimp meter. Now you can really know what your green speed is at your home course. This should help your reads as well.

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The Perfect Putter – Premium Pack includes some useful upgrades for your Perfect Putter. First, it comes with the Perfect Putter. Additionally, you get a ramp extender for practicing long range putts, or practicing on really slow greens. You also get their set of stainless steel putting gates. These four gates vary in size from the widest Beginner gate to the nearly-ball wide Perfect gate. These gates alone are great practice tools. You also get a carrying case that everything fits into. I also fit an elevated string line into the case, which pairs nicely with the workings of Perfect Putter.

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Who Would Benefit From The Perfect Putter?

My impulse answer to that question is everyone who putts would benefit from using the Perfect Putter. How can you not benefit from practicing with such a tool? Maybe you don’t use AimPoint to read greens. You still, hopefully, use some system to read greens. The Perfect Putter lets you know right away if your reads are correct, or if you should be looking into different reading strategies.

I think that the Perfect Putter should be a part of the arsenal at every teaching facility. Every facility should have one, if not every instructor. Instructors can use it to show their students exactly where to aim, and then also more effectively diagnose swing issues when the student misses the putt. Speaking from my experience using the Perfect Putter, knowing that the read is absolutely correct allows the golfer to really focus on improving putting mechanics.

On a synergistic side note, when I was on the practice range at the Fry’s Open, I saw one of the people working with a tour pro with a Perfect Putter case slung over his arm. As it turns out, there are quite a few players on the tours using the perfect putter as part of their practice program. There are a whole bunch of professional testimonials on the Perfect Putter site, but this is one of my favorites:

The Perfect Putter is a fantastic product. It takes reading greens to a complete different level. In fact, if you are trying to read a green without it is as if you were handcuffed. It is a superb, a must have device that should have been around when I was playing for a living.

Martin Hall, Host of the TV show ¨School of Golf” on the Golf Channel. 2008 PGA National Teacher of the Year

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The Only Flaw With The Perfect Putter

There is only one thing preventing The Perfect Putter from being something that I would recommend that every golfer should buy, and that’s the price. Don’t get me wrong, I truly believe that using the Perfect Putter while practicing putting will allow all golfers to improve their putting. However, the Perfect Putter’s premium materials and construction carry a premium price tag.

The Perfect Putter Standard Pack costs $239, with the tested Premium Pack costing $299. I think that the Premium Pack is the way to go, as you get the putting gates, the case, and a stand that helps stabilize the unit. Regardless, this is an expensive tool.

In no way am I saying that the Perfect Putter is overpriced. I’m just saying that it’s expensive. Though I am not privy to their manufacturing costs, the stainless steel construction, along with the multiple machined bolts, and precision construction likely does not come cheap.

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$239 for the Perfect Putter is probably a fair price, but it is still a lot of money for most people to spend on a putting aide. Will it help your putting? I feel confident that it will, but it’s probably out of most golfers’ golf budget.

I’d like to drive a Mercedes, but my job says that I should drive a Honda.

That’s what I would really love to see, the Honda version of the Perfect Putter. Perhaps there’s was way to keep the manufacturing tolerances, but to build it from a plastic polymer rather than steel, thus dropping the unit cost down to the $50-ish range. It may not be possible, but if there was a less expensive version, it would almost be a mandatory purchase for the golfer looking to improve his or her putting.

However, let’s address the price from a different direction for a moment. How many golfers will buy a new putter when they are looking to improve on the course? How much do they spend on that putter? Golfsmith currently has 118 putters in the $100-$250 range, and another 34 putters above $250. Keep your old putter, spend that money on a Perfect Putter, and perhaps a lesson or two.

 

The Perfect Putter

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If the price is not an issue for you, I would recommend that you seriously consider adding the Perfect Putter to your training tool contingent. If you are an instructor, or in charge of instruction at your facility, you should probably order one today.

The ability to see exactly how the ball will roll on the green is extremely valuable. You don’t need to trust your read when you practice, you can see if you read the putt right or wrong immediately, and definitively. If you practice your reads with the Perfect Putter, your reads will improve. Plus, if you know the read is correct, but you didn’t make the putt, you can be confident that the issue lies with your putting stroke.

The Perfect Putter’s premium construction does carry a premium price tag, but the premium construction also means that you will not likely need to replace the unit any time soon. As long as it’s not abused, the Perfect Putter should last a long time.

For more information, check out the photos, testamonials, and videos at their website: www.theperfectputter.com

 

Win a Perfect Putter

You can win your very own Perfect Putter. Just leave a comment below talking about your system for reading greens and how you would incorporate the Perfect Putter into your practice sessions. The winner will be chosen at random and notified on 11/28/14. Good Luck!

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)

TESTED: Taylormade R15 (vs) SLDR

TESTED: Taylormade R15 (vs) SLDR

Post image for TESTED: Taylormade R15 (vs) SLDR

New clubs are great.  We’ve been conditioned as consumerists to think that newer = better.  Earlier this week we gave the world the first look at the new 2015 Taylormade R15 driver.  Last night we were in New York city to cover the live launch event Taylormade had for the media.  Today, we tell you whether or not 2015 is any better than 2014.

From a performance standpoint the 2014 Taylormade SLDR ranked #1 in the MyGolfSpy Most Wanted testing.  The SLDR took home not only the distance category but also the overall.  So, the R15 has some tough shoes to fill that is for sure.

Data

We hit the new R15 side by side next to the SLDR. Both clubs were set to the stated loft position (in this case 10.5°), and both had the movable weight(s) set to the neutral position.

Here’s how the data looks:

r15-vs-sldr

RESULTS

As you can see, we saw a bit more ball speed with the new model, but despite the lower launch, we saw a bit more spin as well. Noteworthy is that that ball speed was slightly more consistent (based on standard deviation) with R15 than with SLDR.

Although both models are 460cc the white head of the R15 does make it appear larger than the SLDR. We’re back to the part of that science of white thing again.

From a feel perspective, we think the R15 is an improvement over SLDR, though visually I prefer the old one.

Summary

  • Distance = R15 Longer
  • Accuracy = R15 More Offline
  • Ball Speed = R15 Higher
  • Launch = R15 Lower
  • Spin = R15 Higher
  • Feel = R15 Slightly Better

Takeaway

While we’ll certainly need to spend more time with it (and have more people test), our preliminary assessment is that while R15 shows better ball speed numbers than SLDR it most likely isn’t a must upgrade for most current SLDR owners. The ability to move more weight to the heel and toe, along with the stability setting, may make R15 more attractive for golfers who require shot shape correction in their driver.

 

Golf Forum – Golf Blog (MyGolfSpy.com)