Recently the people at G.R.I.P. (Golf Research in Play) sent me one of their 460cc Drivers for review. G.R.I.P. offers a full range of golf equipment from the driver down to your wedges and putter. The equipment is priced to move, sometimes coming in at 20-50% of major brand equipment costs ($129 for the driver, $269 for a full set of irons). So anyone looking to save a few bucks, while playing equipment with some of the latest technology, would find G.R.I.P. interesting, to be sure.

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Background

Here is some information regarding the technical details of the G.R.I.P. Driver:

The Craftsmanship — Aerospace-Grade 460cc Beta Titanium
Our G.R.I.P. Driver offers an enormous 460cc beta titanium clubhead, the largest allowable by the USGA. It is constructed using aerospace-grade, beta titanium, with the maximum allowable COR (Coefficient of Restitution), enabling the clubface to give slightly at impact and spring back.

Additionally, the clubface’s generous sweet spot produces exceptionally long and straight drives, and fewer mis-hits. Its deep clubface also promotes a high launch angle and low spin rate to maximize distance.

Elevated MOI
The G.R.I.P. 460cc Driver’s innovative design boosts its MOI (Moment of Inertia) by moving the club’s weight from its center, decreasing side spin and increasing ball speed. The elevated MOI also significantly reduces twisting of the clubhead, allowing for straighter shots even on off-center hits.

Rear-Sole Weighting
The GRIP 460cc Beta Titanium Driver features swing-correcting, fixed weight ports in the club’s rear sole, providing for a lower, deeper center of gravity that helps you close the clubface at impact and eliminate or reduce slicing. The G.R.I.P. fixed weighting system also reacts effortlessly to off-center hits by squaring the face during contact, making it the benchmark in fixed-weight driver technology.

A Variety of Lofts and Shafts
Our G.R.I.P. Driver captures the power of its beta titanium clubhead, while maintaining a classic driver shape. It is available in three different lofts 9′, 10.5′ and 12′. In addition, we offer a variety of shaft types for our G.R.I.P. 460cc Beta Titanium Driver, including a choice of graphite — Regular, Stiff Flex, Senior Flex, Lady Flex — or True Temper Steel. A head cover is also included.

Look and Feel

The first thing that will LEAP out at you is the bright…did I say BRIGHT blue color of the driver’s head. The pictures I took really do not do the color scheme justice (see picture below). Aside from the color, the look at address is quite traditional. For me, this is a good thing. Sometimes I find it difficult to get over the outlandish shapes of some of the newer driver heads. The shape of the G.R.I.P. Driver reminds me a lot of the R7 460 or Nickent 4DX driver. That’s a good thing!

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While the overall paint job looks quite nice, one thing I did notice was that the edges of the paint were a little sloppy. In the case of the crown (see below), you can see some imperfections which almost look like chips. When I took these pictures, I had not yet hit the club, so it certainly wasn’t from play. That being said, it’s nothing really major. It didn’t bother me when I addressed the ball. Just something I had noticed, and for $129 vs at least $299 for a driver from anyone else…I’d be willing to let that pass.

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Feel wise, the head was a little soft for me. I will get more into the performance next, but feel off the face didn’t have that same explosive feel as some of the other drivers I have been playing lately. Feel, however, is quite subjective, and I would leave it up to you to decide how it felt.

The club was delivered with a stiff flex graphite shaft. I do generally play stiff flex shafts in my driver, but this one felt more on the soft side of stiff, if not the heavier side of regular. The band on the shaft claimed to be low torque and high launch.

Performance

Where I may not have liked a few things in the look and feel department, it was tough to argue with the performance. The shaft did indeed launch the ball high and did not seem to spin much more than any other stock driver shaft. Carry distance seemed to be on par with my current driver. Hits off the center of the face certainly looked pretty in the air.

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Toe and heel hits still seemed to get a lot of ball speed, as they were not drastically shorter than hits in the center of the face. So I would definitely call the driver very forgiving. The weak shaft may have contributed to some inconsistencies for me, in that I occasionally had a big hook or slice. Nonetheless, this certainly has nothing to do with the driver head itself.

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There did not seem to be any major bias left or right in the weighting/face of the club. I was able to hit draws and fades with the head with a little effort. The club did, however, seem to want to go pretty straight for the most part. If you just want to blast drives long and straight down the fairway…that’s probably a good thing.

Conclusion

For $129, there isn’t much to complain about here. If you’re looking for a 460cc driver, with most of the modern driver technology…and want to save some cash for lessons…be sure to check out the G.R.I.P. golf driver. Sure, there are some imperfections with the paint, the face felt a little soft, but for the average golfer, I think this club is a great deal. Just keep in mind, all the technology in the world won’t fix that over the top move that creates your slice. At $129…vs $500 for some big named drivers…you could put a lot of extra cash toward lessons, more rounds on the course, or plenty of other worthy causes.

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You can order the G.R.I.P. 460cc driver directly from their website for $129.95.

Comments
Harvey Specter
Posted at 4:59 pm December 13, 2007
Rob Blumberg
Author

Thanks for the feedback. The little lightening bolt in the crown is not a scratch, blemish or sky mark. It is part of the GRIP logo put in place to address the ball. It has become a bit of a conversation piece. Tony at Hooked on Golf Blog who loves the clubs has a huge gripe with this little mark we leave. Hopefully this now accounts for a perfect paint job. A blogger is the last persone we would send a bad club to!

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