This Ping i3 look-alike turned out to be a real surprise. We picked this wood up at Wal-Mart for $39.96. We figured that at just $40 it needed only to be serviceable to be worth the extremely low price tag. The Dunlop turned out to be much better than that. Feel was very good – not overly solid feeling, but alive and vibrant with a sharp, tingly sensation at impact. Control was better than average. Distances and trajectories were good. Flight patterns were neutral and reasonably consistent. The compact head gets the ball up with ease.
We liked the Linear Force. In fact, direct comparison with high-end woods left us shaking our heads. This is certainly no Ping or Titleist, but none who have hit it would have any reluctance trusting it during a serious playing round. In fact, one tester is presently using it as his regular 3-wood leaving his steel-shafted i3 in the trunk of his car. Dirt cheap economy clubs are not supposed to be this good.
How can a $40 golf club even come close to competing with $200 golf clubs? We don’t know. It plays havoc with golf club logic. Dunlop even put a nice Golf Pride Softee grip on this economy wood. True, there was a gap between the ferrule and hosel and the finish on the head will probably not be as durable as it might be, but still, the overall fit and finish were acceptably good. It’s even a decent looking wood. The brown Softee makes it seem much pricier looking.
Now, be forewarned, at this low price no manufacturer can guarantee consistency from club to club. The next 3-wood off of the line may have an inferior shaft. Flex consistency and wall-thicknesses cannot be guaranteed even in expensive shafts. Hey, this shaft may break in a few weeks. We don’t know, but at this price, you can’t complain. For that reason, we did not do an extended test on this club. Different standards apply to economy clubs aimed at the beginner or occasional golfer. If you want durability from cheap clubs, buy steel shafts.
- Dunlop Linear Force
- 3 wood, 43’’ Dunlop graphite, regular flex
Note: Wal-Mart has huge purchasing power that greatly influences what it pays for products. The price of the Dunlop Linear Force may be higher from other sources. Additionally, not all Wal-Mart’s provide a selection of individual golf clubs.