There are so many good golf club options out there today.
But there are also a lot of sub-par (pun intended) club manufacturers out there taking advantage of inexperienced golfers.
You may find a great price on a golf club and think you are saving money but you may end up with clubs that perform terribly, or worse, break easily. So here are some golf club brands to avoid and mistakes to avoid when buying golf clubs).
If you’re just getting started and want to learn how to select the right clubs, check out our complete guide on choosing the Best Golf Clubs For Beginners.
1. Knock-off Clubs
This first one really isn’t a brand, but more of a category of brands. But it is the number one thing to avoid when buying golf clubs.
Knock-off clubs are those that are designed to fool you into thinking they are the same club as the major manufacturers but in fact are made with cheap materials and often come from factories in countries that have lax laws regarding patents and fraud. This makes it difficult for legitimate companies to stop them.
These types of knock-offs are actually illegal. Don’t worry, it’s not illegal for you to buy them, just to sell them.
However, you need to be aware that you will be getting a club that may be entirely useless and break easily and you will have little to no recourse to get your money back.
These are often sold online on shady-looking websites and sometimes even on eBay. Although at least on eBay you may have some recourse.
You can avoid knock-off clubs by always buying from reputable sellers. Here, we recommend TGW.com and amazon.com to purchase clubs online. You can usually find great prices on either of them and both offer solid return policies. TGW even offers a “playability guarantee” in case you don’t like the clubs.
2. Clone Companies (Giga Golf, Diamond Tour)
Giga-golf isn’t in the same category as the knock-off sellers. They are a legitimate business that makes clubs legally.
However, they fall into the category of “clone clubs.” These are clubs that are designed to be similar to popular models from the big brands.
There is nothing illegal about these clubs but as a buyer, you should be aware that you are not getting the same value you would if you bought the real thing.
You can save a lot of money buying clone clubs, but there are some risks associated with it.
First, they are almost guaranteed not to perform as well as the club model they are emulating. Second, you should make sure you know what the warranty on the clubs is. Third, the resale value will be almost zero.
If you are willing to accept these limitations of clone clubs then go ahead and give one a try.
3. Component Clubs
This is more of a cautionary item in the list rather than something to specifically avoid.
There is an entire market out there of components that are available to professional and amateur clubmakers to make their own clubs. That’s because the big brands usually don’t want to let their moneymaking clubs get sold in parts.
There isn’t anything inherently wrong with component clubs, but you need to educate yourself on the components you are buying and, more importantly, you need them assembled by someone who knows what they are doing.
The real risk of component clubs is not in the quality of the materials but in the skill of the clubmaker.
My very first club was actually a 5 iron assembled from components by a local clubmaker. I was a kid and he made it specifically for my size.
So there are times when these clubs can be a great option.
However, for most of you out there, you’ll probably fare a lot better just sticking with the regular brands.