Feeding Your Golf Addiction In The Winter, Part 2: Maintain Your Equipment

This is the second in a series of essays on things to feed your golf addiction in the off-season.

Maintain Your Equipment.

Cold, snowy days are a good time to give a little tender loving care to your equipment.

Get your bag out of the shed and empty it completely. If you’re like me, chances are you’ll find old scorecards, useless balls, protein bar wrappers and plenty of dirt—the detritus of a busy summer. Vacuum the inside, and wipe it down. Then wipe down the outside. Snip any stray threads. Get the goo out of the zipper teeth; I use Goo Gone for that.

Wipe down your pull-or-push cart. Oil the bearings. Tighten the bolts.

Then take a look at your clubs.

Get the dirt off the heads, and take a scrub brush to the grooves. Then give them a good buffing with a clean cloth. Wipe down the shafts, too. If there’s any residue, try the Goo Gone on that, too.

If your plastic ferrules are nicked or scruffed, you can buff those up, too. Put a little acetone on a lint free cloth and give the ferrule a quick swipe. That’ll take out the scruff marks. If there are deeper nicks, you may need to give it a stronger swipe. Be careful with the acetone. That’s powerful stuff, and not to be breathed. It can cause brain damage, or worse. Avoid getting it on anything plastic or painted. It’s best to do this in the garage with the door open (that’s what I do).

Finally, take a look at the grips. Give them a good scrubbing, at the very least. A better option, however, is to simply replace them. Replacing grips is very easy and relatively cheap if you use rubber, slip-on grips. You can get a complete grip kit, with grips, tape, grip solvent and a rubber clamp on Amazon.

Here’s how to do it:

1) Get some grips, and double sided grip tape.
2)Cut off the old grips with a utility knife.
3) Strip off the old tape. Use a hair dryer to melt the glue if the tape is stubborn.
4) Secure the club in a vice with soft rubber clamps. You can get ones designed for golf clubs from the companies mentioned above.
5) Apply the tape: There are two ways to do this: You can start at the lower end of where the grip would be by running it in a spiral pattern up the shaft. Or, you can run it lengthwise up one side of the butt and down the other. Peel the backing off the tape so the stick side is revealed.
6) Put another small strip over the hole on the butt.
7) Put something to catch the mineral spirits under the butt end. I use an aluminum paint tray for paint rollers.
8) Pour some mineral spirits into the grip while holding your finger over the hole at the bottom. Slosh the spirits around inside the grip.
9) Pour the spirits over the tape. Add a little bit more of the spirits until the glue on the tape is slick.
10) Push the grip onto the shaft.
11) Most grips have a couple of little marks at the top and bottom ends to help with alignment. Make sure that these align with each other. Otherwise, the grip might be slightly twisted, which may affect your swing.
12) You can put the logo up (I do), or down (as most pros do). Just make sure that the marks line up parallel to the shaft.

Read the rest of the series.

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