Tin Cup ball markers are steel ball identification stencils that make marking a golf ball with complex designs an easy task. To use the Tin Cup, just put the ball in the stencil and use a Sharpie to color it in.
Unlike some plastic ball stencils that I have seen, the Tin Cup models seem a safe bet to last a lifetime of golfing.
Tin Cups come in a wide variety of designs. Two shown in the photo are a Michigan State Spartans design, and one that looks like the State of Michigan.
Among the more than 150 designs: Beer mugs, martini glasses, aliens, anchors, spiders, guitars, lions, bombs, coffee cups, bear paws, buffalo, crabs, devils and dragonflies. There are lines of lettering, of state outlines, of military themes, and of select college logos (I’m waiting for a WVU logo). The Tour Series is less “cute,” with stencils for arrows, crosses and traditional straight edges for lining up balls.
The company also will make custom Tin Cups, which would be perfect for, say, gifts for groomsmen. Designs for three letter words, initials and monograms are among their most popular.
There can’t be a more pleasing way of complying with Rule 12-2. If you are required to make a mark to identify your ball, why not do it with a little pizzaz?
Another plus: Tin Cups are made in the USA.
As an aside, I was a bit stymied by what to call the product. Tin Cup calls them “ball markers.” But a “ball marker” is also something that you leave on the green to remind you where to replace your ball. Ball Markers (as in the green location identifier) are also known as ball marks. But ball marks are also indentations in the green left by an incoming ball. Ball marks, however are also called divots. Thus, “divot tools.” But divots are also craters left in the fairways by clubs. The language of golf can be very confusing.
Tin Cups are actually Ball Identification Stencils. That, however, does not roll off the tongue particularly well.
Whatever the name, I really like the Tin Cups. The State of Michigan Tin Cup is attached to my bag right now.