Heads may be divided into two classes, those with a scare to which the shaft is glued and then bound with wnipping, and those into the neck of which a hole is bored to receive the shaft. The latter are commonly known as socket heads. Belonging to the latter family may be included also the spliced fork, formed by sawing a narrow slit about one-quarter inch wide,and two and one-half inches to three inches deep in the neck. Both of the latter class appear to possess an advantage over the original type in that the spring is brought closer to the face, enabling a somewhat longer ball to be driven. Moreover, there is not the same liability of the head becoming unglued and flying off the shaft.

Whipped Heads v. Socket Heads

Spliced Fork, Regular, And Flush joint Sockets

Spliced Fork, Regular, And Flush-joint Sockets

Recognizing the undoubted merits of the ordinary socket head, a firm of well-known manufacturers have developed the principle still further by shortening the neck until there is practically no neck left, a hole being drilled through what little is left of it with a left-hand screw, to within about one - sixteenth of the sole, and the shaft being firmly secured therein with glue. Actual tests have demonstrated the longer driving power of this head.

Showing Section Of And A Screw Socket

Showing Section Of And A Screw Socket

The question as to how the head should lie when affixed to the shaft is purely a matter of individual taste. It may, however, be remarked in this connection that the player who is habitually prone to slicing may remedy this weakness to some extent by using a head with the toe slightly cocked up when held naturally, while he whose besetting sin is an undue inclination towards pulling may find a partial corrective by using a flat-lying club.

In the matter of weight, no absolutely fixed rule can be laid down, as so much depends upon the physical conformation of the player, and the character of his swing. It may, however, be affirmed that the weight of the ordinary head should not be less than six and one - half ounces, or more than eight and one - half ounces. The happy medium will probably be found best suited to the general run of men. It will have been observed that these limitations apply to the ordinary head, by which is meant the ordinary head as spliced to the shaft. The socket head, and especially the last one of this class just referred to, can carry a shade more weight, owing to the saving effected by the abolition of the neck.

The disposition of the lead in a head exercises a very marked influence on the accurate flight of a ball. If it be massed equally on both sides behind the centre of the face, then a ball struck properly in the middle of the face will assuredly go straight, while the same ball if hit off the heel or toe will almost surely be sliced or pulled, as the case may be. Consequently, if the lead be inserted with the bulk running towards the heel, a ball hit in the centre of the face will likely be pulled, while a ball hit in the same place off a club the lead in which inclines towards the toe will in all probability be somewhat sliced.

In order to avoid the possibility of any spin being imparted to the ball, either to the right or the left, it is advisable to have the lead put in equidistant laterally behind the proposed point of impact, which is the centre of the face.

According, also, as to whether the lead be well up towards the top or down towards the sole, so is the trajectory of the ball affected. In the former case the ball will have a low flight with but little carry, and considerable run, while in the latter a high ball with but little run will result.

The angle which the face of the club presents to the ball is a very important factor. It should properly be at right angles to the proposed flight of the ball. If it be hooked and the ball be truly hit a pull will certainly follow, while if the natural lie is so laid away as to face to the right the ball will go in that direction.

Some players with a faulty swing or deficient follow - through purposely use a club slightly hooked to counteract such weakness, particularly players who seem to find it impossible to avoid slicing. There is no doubt that a hooked face acts as a corrective of slicing. The true remedy, however, should be applied to the swing itself. That is where the trouble originates and resides. The bulger head owes its origin to the innate tendency of a ball being hit off the heel describing a curve to the right, and one off the toe to the left. To offset this the face is made with a suggestion of convexity, hooked, as it were, towards the heel and laid away towards the toe, the centre being practically at right angles to the true direction. The true type of the bulger head has fallen into disuse, and now the vast majority are made with practically straight faces.

Some men have difficulty in getting the ball up, while others seem unable to avoid skying their tee shots, irrespective of the face being slightly laid back or being putter-faced, and also without reference to the height of the tee used. This indi-cates that there is unquestionably some defect again in the swing. With a correct swing it follows that when the face of the club is laid back a higher ball is driven than with a club having a straight or putter face. The higher ball is perhaps more effective with the wind, or where a hazard involving a long carry has to be negotiated, but against the wind it is a bit of a handicap.

By means of a comparatively straight-faced club, however, a high or a low ball may be driven, according to the height of the tee used. In this connection it may be remarked, en passant, that most players tee their balls too high.

In selecting a head it is well to see that the grain of the wood runs at right angles to the face, or approximately so, and straight up the neck. This not only contributes in a degree towards greater distance, but tends also to greater longevity, as it were, of the head itself by reason of the lesser liability of flaking or cracking.

Before leaving the maker's hands the head is given a rubbing of linseed oil on all parts excepting the face and the sole, and then varnished, in order to keep out moisture. A few makers even put a coat of varnish on the sole, and I am not sure that this isn't a good idea. It is advisable to occasionally put a touch of linseed oil on all parts excepting the face. Never keep clubs in a hot place or a damp one. In a hot atmosphere the glue will be affected and loose heads result, and, moreover, the natural supply of oil in the cells of the wood will soon dry out, and cracks will inevitably result. In a damp situation moisture will be absorbed, and the heads will lose driving power. A cool, dry place is the best.