Golf Club Rules You May Not Know

A customer recently asked me a equipment related question about whether the Rubber Golf Club Pickup item we sell conforms to the Rules of Golf.  If you are not familiar with it, the simple device attaches to the end of your grip and acts as a suction cup for the purpose of picking the ball off the ground or from the bottom of the hole so you don’t have to bend over.

Rubber Golf Ball Pickup $1.45 each

If you read the Rules of Golf booklet very carefully, you will find there is a small exception to Rule 1a in Appendix II.  It allows for attachments to the putter as long as they don’t affect the performance of the club.  So as long as you have the Rubber Golf Club Pickup affixed onto your putter grip and no other club in your bag, plus it is not removed and re-attached during the round, it if fine.

There are many things that golfers can do to golf clubs, whether they are existing or building from scratch that could make a club non-conforming.  For instance, you could add lead tape anywhere on the head, except for the face as that would be a no-no.  Or you could add a coat hanger underneath the grip.  What, someone actually thought of doing that to a club, and better yet – why?  Well, the purpose is to create a raised rib on the grip.  While ribbed grips are allowed, the diameter of the coat hanger would be too great as there is a limitation (0.040” or 1mm) to how raised the rib can be.

So if you like to tinker on clubs,  it is important to know the rules!

4 comments

  1. Bill Babb says:

    Question: Can someone place extra weight on the putter grip (like 5 lbs)and use tape to hold it on? It certainly would effect the total weight of the club and therfore the performance. I guess he tried to counter-balance the club.

  2. Jeff Summitt says:

    Bill:

    The answer would be whether the lead tape would stay there permanently or slide right off. Most likely it will be the latter. You can add gauze tape to the outside of the grip to build it up as long as you maintain the shape and not create a waist or irregular shape that would be non-conforming under the Rules of Golf. But there is nothing against counter-balancing inside the grip as long as it is permanent and cannot be altered during the stipulated round.

  3. Caleb Hoshiyama says:

    This is not entirely correct. The suction cup must NOT be wider than the grip itself or it will not comply. I have sent pictures of a putter with a suction cup attached to a putter and a question of if it was permanently attached, than it was not legal. This is what I got back from the USGA: Caleb,

    There may be suction cups available with a much smaller base that could
    be stretched to fit your putter grip. Provided that the pin did not
    permanently attached the cup to the grip, it might be permissible to
    attach in that manner. However, the attachment would generally need to
    conform to the shape of the grip. If you could send me a couple images
    of that type of attachment, I would be happy to comment.

    Adding weight to the end of the club is permitted. However, the weight
    couldn’t be added to the end of the grip and would have to be internal
    and flush with the top of the grip.

    I did not include the name of the USGA person who wrote this, as it is not allowed.

  4. Jeff Summitt says:

    Caleb:

    Thanks for sharing. Here is the link to where the explanation was provided: http://www.usga.org/equipment/faq/Club-and-Ball-Testing-FAQs/#7

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