Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby eth14dev » Thu Aug 03, 2017 8:46 am

Hi Everyone,

Brand new to the forums. Hope everyone is well. Just starting my journey to switch over from the modern swing to a classical 1930-1940 style swing. My dad in lieu got me a full set of Hogan 73 model apex clubs and have a lot of aspirations to mod them. But want to take baby steps as the amount of personal customization will take a lot of time and money.

Seeing as I am new to the whole customization thing, wanted to ask around ABS from the knowledgable community to ask for clarification on some concepts and input on whether certain ideas may or may not work.

1) First thing is that I am seeking to get what little offset is present in the apex's out. After reading a lot of the posts realized lag recommends the offset being bent out in a way where the center of each shaft aligns with the 3rd groove. Makes sense considering sweet spot.

- a) But another thing he suggests is having a face progession through the set. What I was wondering is first what is face progression? (Tried googling it, but the answers seemed kida all over the place).

- b) From what I have been able to gather, it has something to do with how much the leading edge sticks out in relation to either the center of the hosel or the leading edge of the hosel. Either way. In lag's recommendation is the subtle face progression something that would ideally be built into the clubs design? Or just a just a visual thing and since even if all the clubs' center shaft lines were aligned with the third groove in exatly the same way, due to higher lofted clubs having a flatter face, it would give the visual effect of an increasing face progression, but not that suc a face progression is actually built into the clubs inital design when forging.

2) Has anyone ever seen or heard of whole shaft insert weights? I understand that to add weight to the shafts often metal powder is added, but has anyone seen or had the idea of adding dowel like solid metal weights into the shafts? Of course it would stiffen the shafts like crazy but that is not an issue with me. I know they make the tip and butt insert weights but I was thinking for the whole shaft.

3) Also would using shaft extensions change the flex and swing weight? Not to use them to make the shafts longer but to do just that change the weight and flex characterisitcs. For example I can use a 4 iron shaft cut so that the club length is 37.5". Or can I say have a 4 iron shaft cut 2" shorter then add a 2" extension so that the final length of the club is still 37.5" but with a different bend and weight profile?

4) Anybody have experience with welding weights on to the face, soles, and backs of the club heads then using grinders and files to get them into the desired shape and mass distribution, instead of using lead tape? Seems like customization can be very precise this way if done well. Is this possible to do without messing up the clubs or even legal for play?

5) Does anyone have experience with these shafts: Hogan Apex "Pro" (5) [heavier than standard apex like DG x-100 vs DG x-400. Same shaft characterisitcs just heavier], Apex "Extra" (5) [Has more steps near the butt and tip in comparison to standard apex], Apex Vector (5)?
I am really interested in these shafts and would love to know from people who have tried them what they feel like and how the shafts work in relation to the swing and ball interaction based on flex pattern and stiffness. I want to eventually change out the apex (4) in the clubs my dad bought me with one of these three shafts and wanted to start getting input now, so I can become more educated, so if I ever do find such shafts, I can make an informed purchase.

Thanks again for a great community and for anyone who decides to reply.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby k2baloo » Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:08 am

1. Leading edge "sticking out" more in short irons than long irons due to having more loft. Lag lines up the 3rd groove with the center of the shaft, so more loft means you kick the leading edge further forward. You'll be hard pressed to find a local person that will do a double-bend on irons to take the offset out. I just weaken my lofts to take some offset out + it adds a bit more bounce.

2. No - for many reasons this sounds like a bad idea. Butt weights, tip weights, lead/tungsten powders, and lead tape do the trick just fine.

3. Yes, but I'm not sure what you're going for - are you cutting the shafts from the tip to make them play stiffer? If you use taper tip shafts then they won't fit in the hosels anymore without re-boring. 73 Hogan blades are definitely tapered, so I wouldn't tip shafts unless you really know what you're doing. Hard step them first (i.e. 5 iron shaft in a 4 iron).

4. Sounds legal to me, but seems like a huge hassle considering how easy lead power and lead tape is to work with.

5. I haven't, but I think the standard Apex shafts are pretty good. I have a 1 iron with the Apex 4 shaft that plays really well. I have a driver with an Apex 5 that I like a lot. I'm sure the other ones are nice too, it's hard to go wrong with anything that says Apex 5 on it IMO.


My honest advice - keep it simple. You're asking a lot of questions that make me worried you're going to ruin the clubs your dad bought for you. If you want to play them close to ABS specs, I would just get the lofts/lies adjusted and add some weight. If you find someone good enough to remove offset it's a bonus. Add some weight with lead power and/or lead tape. Maybe some new grips if the old ones aren't in good shape. Good luck and enjoy the blades!
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby k2baloo » Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:09 am

Also, I'm just an amateur tinkerer when it comes to clubs. Some more knowledgeable folks have posted loads of stuff on here about club-making. Use the search function and browse the sub-forums for ideas and tips.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby eth14dev » Thu Aug 03, 2017 2:24 pm

Thanks K2baloo,

for your thoughts. Ya I have been digging through the archives for like the past week before I even signed up, but could not find answers that were satisfactory to me. I have read the threads on offset, the vector shafts, weighting with lead tape, etc., but for better or worse wanted to try asking my questions staright forward to see what response I get.

Thanks for your suggestions and thoughts. Topics 2-3 are just ideas that I could not find anyone asking anything similar anywhere so just wanted to try asking. If things work out and I am able to get a club to test such ideas on, it will definitely be some years from now after more learning and research. This is post is part of said research.

While topics 1 and 5 are things I want to implement in the relative near future for sure, especially dealing with offset, lie angle, and Shaft length, stiffness, and flex pattern.

As for the issues in extensions perhaps a little background information might be warrented. My first sport was not golf it was archery. In archery a great deal of time and learning is spent on understanding how the tuning of the bow and arrows interact with the technique of the archer.

One major area is how the stiffness, weight, shaft geometry, and flex pattern of the arrow shaft is affected by its appropriate components such as head type, head weight, type of fletchings: length, weight, exact geometry because all these things affect the arrow flight. It occured to me, that there was a similarity (not 1:1 but similar) between arrow tuning and building a golf club. Both have shafts, heads, and a butt end that interacts with the athlete and the forces of physics affect them in similar ways. How this relates with the question on extensions is: there are predominately two different types of arrow heads: sockets and tangs and a less prevelant hybrid type. The socket works just like a golf shaft insertion into a club head. But a tang works the other way around, the arrow head has potruding from its back a long thing shaft that gets inserted into the inner diameter of the arrow shaft. Obviously the two would have different flex characteristics and there are numerous variations of each type. The hybrid is generally called a footing. For example a bamboo arrow is light and strong, but often it is too light and can split at the nodes closest to the arrow head if it impacts an over hard target material. One way to midigate this is to carve a shorter front insert out of a hard wood like hickory and insert it into the bamboo shaft towards the tip. The outer diameters would line up. It is essentially a wooden tanged extension. Then one can apply a socket head to the hickory footing or drill a hole and add a tanged head. This third option will obviously have a very different flex and weight distribution in comparison to the former two popular arrow head styles. Figured that golf heads are not tanged but a similar effect in shaft deflection characteristics might be observable as a socket arrowhead with a solid shaft or a footed arrow shaft with socket head.

Just wanted to know if people have experience with such an idea and if so, how it affected the feel and performance.

In archery we I learned that it is about 90% good form and 10% properly fitted and tuned equipment. For example, no amount of fitting and tuning will make an arrow fly straight if the archer is droping their arms as they release the arrow. It will obviously go down towards the ground. But I have worked with students who kept shooting left despite having reasonably good and consistent form. The form could not account for the arrow flying like 5 feet left, maybe a few inches at short range and a foot at long distances but not missing the target completely. The archers mentioned they were aiming at the middle. Upon checking their tuning specs, the bows were set up in a way where the arrows were pointing excessively to the left and not closely in line with the center of the bow. And the shafts of the arrows were too short alongside a super light point that essentially back weighted the arrow. Even an archer with perfect form could never make such a tuned set fly straight. It was inherently flawed. After, fixing the tuning specs the studens got a much tighter dispersion immediately. Still not perfect (due to form errors) but much better and the arrows were acting predictably now.

I see golf the same way. Need to have a set of equipment that will work with the individual's swing that they "want" to have. Not where they are at the moment if they are still refining their technique. Which is why I am on this long term goal of having my clubs work exactly how I want them to, with the classical swing I am working on with my dad.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby eth14dev » Thu Aug 03, 2017 2:32 pm

Oh ya and as for the welding. I can't recall where I have read such accounts nor to the authenticity of them, but I recall reading that many of the old timers like Melhorn, Hogan, Locke, etc. Soldered and welded metal (like lead) unto their clubs everywhere from the back to the sole to change the characteristics. Along with much tinkering, grinding, filing to get there clubs perfect to how they wanted them. So just wanted to throw the idea out there, for input, as it is something foreign to people of my generation who have taken up golf.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby lagpressure » Fri Aug 04, 2017 8:24 am

Hi John,


Basically, to give a list of how and why I want to modify the clubs.

Goal 1) Bending Out Offsets and Lie Angle Adjustment.

Reason:
Modern equipment promotes bad form. One thing that became obvious real quick as I began to be taught the classic swing is that, before I got the apex clubs, I was using Ping I25's and Mizuno Mx-23's, and that the modern super upright, clubs that have offset, with the shafts pre-bent forwards and the face bent a little closed are a tragedy.

The only way to use one of these clubs and make the ball go relatively straight (with no power) is to swing over the top while flipping the hands, so as to purposely hit the ball fat so the off set and bounce will jump into the ball as the face is forced closed by awkward manipulation of the wrists.

Interestingly, when I used the modern swing I could never fix my ballooning slice. When I switched to the classic swing using the same modern equipment (albeit with the lies bent super flat) turned my super slice into a ducking pull hook. Which is why my first modification goal for the new apex clubs is to get rid of all offset and any other awkward angles.

Ideally, I literally want to be swinging a golf club that is an obtuse angle. Where I can trace a straight line from the sweet spot up through the middle of my shaft and that the leading edge of the blade will be inline with the leading edge of the shaft and ultimately the leading edge of my grip. And that the only real angles that will be at play will be the lie angle in relation to shaft length and the loft. Hence the club from profile should look like a straight stick with a bend at the end where the face is attached to the hosel.

Reason being, I can trust wherever the back of my left hand is facing is where the ball will go and that my left thumb (which I place down the middle of the grip - I use a weak grip) will be perfectly in line with the third groove sweet spot. The idea comes from the fact that golf is the only sport where we use a stick to hit a ball where non-sensical, unnecessary alterations are made. I don't see the baseball bat, tennis racquet, or hockey stick needing offset, hooked faces, and pre-forward bent shafts.

Goal 2) Shaft Replacements/mods and more lie angle adjustment.

Reason:
I don't want the shaft to bend in my hands like a wet noodle. Makes it impossible to know where the head is in space in relation with my grip. If such a thing existed I would want to swing an XXXXXXX Telephone Pole Stiff Shaft so once again I can trust wherever the leading edge is. It is inline with the leading edge of my grip which is in my left hand and my thumb is always in line with the third groove no matter where dynamically the head is in 3dimensional space in the swing. Really interested in the Hogan Vector (5), Hogan Apex Extra (5), or the Hogan Apex Pro (5).

Plus this might sound crazy, but I want all my clubs to be upwards of 40oz. I used a 40+oz bat in baseball. I Iike the weight. Of course with proper swing weight balancing. The equation for force is mass x acceleration. Just increasing head speed without control or the mass to back it up will cause erratic inconsistencies.

Basically, if a Ferrari going 120mph is going head on into a steam train with like 20 carts behind with full cargo going 100mph which is going to win? This is the way I think about it.

Here is a list outlining my ideal, loft, length, weight, and lie angles for each club in my set as I currently want it. Subject to change as I learn and become better educated, but just for now.

08° - [1w] : (42.75")/(40.25oz)/(41°)
12° - [2w] : (41.5")/(40.75oz)/(44°)
14° - [3w] : (40")/(41.5oz)/(47°)
16° - [4w] : (39.5")/(41.75oz)/(48°)
18° - [1i] : (39")/(42oz)/(49°)
22° - [2i] : (38.5")/(42.25oz)/(50°)
26° - [3i] : (38")/(42.5oz)/(51°)
30° - [4i] : (37.5")/(42.75oz)/(52°)
34° - [5i] : (37")/(43oz)/(53°)
38° - [6i] : (36.5")/(43.25oz)/(54°)
42° - [7i] : (36")/(43.5oz)/(55°)
46° - [8i] : (35.5")/(43.75oz)/(56°)
50° - [9i] : (35")/(44oz)/(57°)
54° - [E] : (34.5")/(44.5oz)/(58°)
58° - [S] : (34.5")/(45oz)/(58°)
02° - [P] : (35.875 ")/(40oz)/(55°)

145cc driver head size
Also, the extreme lie angles and short clubs are because I am 5'6"-5'7" plus the classical swing has flatten my attack angle coming into impact by about 7 or 8 degrees from the 2-3 degrees flat I used to swing due to my height (total of about 9-11 degrees).

Goal 3) Custom Sole Grind and Head Weighting

I have particular ideas on how I want the clubs soles to interact with the ground apart from pw, sw, and to some degree the 8i and 9i, I want 0 bounce and and a razor sharp, straight leading edge on the strike face area, but have the heels and the toes ground with an upturned camber and progressive v-sole style bounce on just the toe and heels, so that the leading edge will always hit the ground first after the ball and the heel or toe will not dig in assuming I swing correctly. And the hosel portion of the face ground flat. This along with along with the heavy shafts will throw the swing weight way off, and with the extreme weights I ideally want, some proper steel welded onto the clubs basically to deepen the blade on blade apex geometry and to add a muscle-back shape akin to the 58 Sunburst and built up area behind the sweet spot akin to Percussion Center Bar that the old McGregors that Hogan used to use prior to starting his own business had. So that there basically a triple whammy of the blade on blade, muscle-back, PC bar all behind the sweet spot for maximum leverage and to ensure that there is enough weight in the head to make sure that the swing weights are workable in conjunction with the ultra heavy shafts. Grooves recut then head rechromed.

Goal 4) Custom Grips
Want to build my own custom grips out of hard wood and have them epoxied on with brass or stainless steel end caps (plus a metal ferrule would also be nice) once all the modifications are done, and then have the wood grips wrapped with a real linen corded cloth wrap grip like they would have done in the hickory era. I like the feeling of a wood grip. Reminder ridge at 5o'clock using a brass wire.

But again seeing as all this custom work will take ages and be super expensive I have settled for taking baby steps.

First thing is to get the offsets and lie angles set a few clubs at a time and again wanted to ask what a proce quote for 4 clubs: 3,6,9,sw would be for such a process.

Sorry about the long email. Just am really specific about how I want the equipment tuning to be.

Thanks again for the great forum and your time and help in advance.



You are on the right path here. I am a big believer in learning the swing from your clubs rather than the other way around. Save some time and benefit from the great strikers who figured this stuff out decades ago, then learn to work from that derivative.... backwards into your own swing. Otherwise, your swing will develop from poorly designed clubs created by hackers in white lab coats who and thinking more about how to help the hacker slightly without having to change their swing.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby lagpressure » Fri Aug 04, 2017 8:33 am

A set of early 1960's Haig Ultra Contour Soles is the set you are looking for.
Get those with the pro flex shafts in them. We could just flatten them out for you and you'll be good to go
with the exact set you are seeking and won't break the bank.

This is the set... and well under $100 to your door or to ours. We can do the rest of the work.
I have this same year and play it in my rotation.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Walter-Hagen-Ha ... SwEAtZZ~JF
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby eth14dev » Fri Aug 04, 2017 9:54 am

Hi Lag,

Thanks for the update and the info on Haig clubs. They are definitely a fine set. Would be great to own too. :D
Will keep them on the radar.

But had a question for clarification though. As I need to run some calculations to make sure my checkbook is in balance after all said and done:

I know you mentioned on the price listings as quoted:

"Bend loft and lie and remove offset $100 "

In my mind when I read this I saw this as $100 for each type of modification, so if I was to ask for all three it would be $300 total for a full set. Is my thinking correct or was it $100 for all 3 modifications, at one time?

The reason why I am asking is I had thought, "okay well if I don't worry about the lofts for now, and only do offset and lie angle on the apex clubs it would be $200+shipping. Which I can't do at this point. But if we just do say 4-5 clubs for now (about 1/2 a set since that is what I am using anyways, maybe it could be in my price range?"

However, if I misunderstood your pricing either too low or too high, I apologize, since that would change all my calculations as I would have been working with a false presumption. I understand you still need to run a business and are looking for a fair price to all parties involved. I am not looking for free discounts, just quotes (if possible) on different amounts of clubs is all. Also, as much as I would like the Haig's, I feel it would make more sense to get this price thing cleared up first, so I can calculate if for now it makes more sense financially to have the Hogan set - offset removed and lies bent or as you suggested, get the Haig's and have the modifications done.

Ultimately, I think it would be fun to have both in rotation alongside the Hogan Sunbursts and older Mac clubs, but want to work with I got right now if possible. Especially, since the apex's were a gift from my dad. Would have taken me 4-6 months of saving up to purchase them myself. My original plan was to get just one vintage club like a 4,5,or 6 and use it as a modding experiment, my dad just went ahead and got the apex set for me as a surprise gift.

Plus, I still want to do the single club modding experiment once I do more research. As I mentioned for now I am content to take baby steps and just have the offsets removed lie angles bent for the clubs I practice with and the shafts replaced as a 2nd goal. I will worry about weighting, sole grinds, and the such later once I find a club no one will feel bad if ruined.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby eth14dev » Fri Aug 04, 2017 10:15 am

Also, to my (potentially flawed) understanding the $100 is for 2-pw which should be 9 clubs.
Does the price change with the 1 iron and sw included since there are 11 clubs now due to labor? (It would make sense to me if so)

Just wondering because the local shops I have in my area operate like this. Usually charge per club to do lies and lofts; they don't offer offset.

So to do a loft adjustment would for example cost about $5-7 depending on the place and the lie would be another $5-7. So to have both done on one club is an average of $12. And the price goes up accordingly the more clubs are bent.

I had assumed this was the case which is why I asked what a half set would cost. Again forgive me if I was mistaken. If you really are offering $100 for all three at one time for a set, my goodness, thank you. But even if my original thought was correct, thank you still as only charging about $10 per club to do the complexities of offset removal and bend lie and loft adjustments precisely, so they don't reintroduce the offset, introduce weird face progressions, or mess up the alignments with the sweet spot, is still a very low price for a huge amount of work.

Either way thanks. I just want to be sure we are all on the same page, so fair business is conducted and everyone (including me) can continue getting better at this fun game of golf.
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Re: Equipment Modding Question for a Newbie

Postby lagpressure » Mon Aug 07, 2017 8:34 am

It's $100 for loft, lie and offset removal for a set of irons... total.
If there is a 1 iron or SW, we'll do that also. We are not that uptight around here! lol

If we have to get into pulling shafts, grips, weighting etc, then it's more, but those pricing should be on the site here.

viewtopic.php?f=264&t=2875
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