The Dingo from Pal Joey has a basic head design that is copied from the Kasco K2K. The Kasco, with a suggested retail price of $488.00 made a big splash with its own variation upon the hybrid iron/wood trend started by the Taylor Made Rescue’s the year before. That variation – more wood than iron – features a relatively large, narrow head with a swoopingly rounded sole. The Dingo has that basic shape and the overall coloring pattern, as well. The graphics are unique on the Dingo and few, if any, would mistake it for a Kasco even with a glancing look. While the Kasco is made from “hyten” steel, a super-hard alloy, the Dingo has a 17-4 stainless body and a hard, nickel-cobalt face.
The Dingo is an inexpensive iron/wood that sells in the vicinity of $60 to $80. (We paid $60 at a pro shop) It is an economy club that is aimed at a different market segment from that targeted by the Kasco. We hit the Dingo side by side with numerous other hybrids. On two occasions we hit it side by side with the Kasco K2K. Is the Kasco a better club? Yes, it is. Is it worth six times as much money? No, it is not. The Kasco had a richer, more vibrant feel and produced slightly more consistent patterns. It also felt more potent and produced slightly higher and longer hits. But, the Dingo turned out to be a very decent club, as well – much better than the very low price would indicate.
All testers were surprised by the pleasant, sweet feel of the Dingo. It is an enjoyable, easy club to use. The trajectories we’ve seen in repeated range sessions have been consistently good. They have been high, soaring and long – as long as or longer than many 5-woods. Aiming was intuitive and our accuracy during range sessions has been very fine. From a short tee, this hybrid works quite well – better than most other hybrids.
The Pal Joey Ti-Interlace shaft from UST produced a very pleasant feel. While obviously not an expensive shaft, the regular flex Ti-Interlace managed to handle a relatively wide range of swing speeds. It remained stable and produced reasonably neutral and good patterns even when hit with force.
Unlike most other fusion iron/woods, the Dingo (and the Kasco) do not use a heavy sole insert of tungsten or copper to place weight below the ball. None is needed; the ball gets up easily and flies high. Roll is less that which occurs with most 5-woods. It is not less than the Tour Edge Any Lies we have been testing, however. The Dingo functions as a good, long approach club and lands the ball with relative softness. The Any Lies hits shorter, but it nails the ball on the green with more authority. From fairway bunkers, the Dingo works well. The rounded sole allows for easy extraction – for those who can handle a long-shafted club in a trap.
While our range sessions with this Pal Joey have been very good, our on-course experiences have been mixed. From flat lies, the Dingo has performed as nicely as it has at the range. The rounded sole of the Dingo has made it versatile from rough and sand, but it has also created a situation that turned off two testers. Both hit the Dingo from good, slightly downhill lies with reduced 3/4 swings. They attempted to lay off the approach shots and hit easy, soft fades to their intended greens. Both produced bad mistakes that neither has produced before with other woods or hybrids. The shot pushed far, far right and short. Apparently, the head design and its rounded sole can fail to close – or remain closed – under certain circumstances. Four such mistakes occurred and left the testers leery of continuing with the Dingo. While this head design is quite forgiving, it does have a distinctive balance to it. We can’t say if this pushing tendency is widespread, or if it is something that leaves as a player becomes more acclimated to the wood. Under full swings, we have seen only fine trajectories – all high, looping and long.
The Pal Joey Dingo is an attractive and highly enjoyable club to use. All of our testers have found it to be as simple as pie to use, except for the problem noted above. On the hybrid scale of iron/woods, it is decidedly more wood than iron. For the price, it is a fine wood. It does not inspire as a trouble club in the same way that the Jackaroo’s or Quick Strike’s do, however. Note: This is not a bore-thru head and the phony, black plug on the sole was not liked by some.
The Dingo is available in ready-made, assembled form only. Its first cousin, the very similar Dynacraft Hypersteel is available custom made or in component form.
One of our regular testers has developed a love affair with the Dingo over this past summer. On-course, it has become his “go to” club. He uses it seven to ten times a round. His course strategy: Play his drive to a distance that allows him to approach with the Dingo. If in trouble, hit the Dingo.
This tester has a smooth, controlled swing. He also hits the Hypersteel versions well, but prefers the lighter, lower swingweight of the Dingo. He is having some Hypersteel’s in other lofts shafted to match his trusted 19-degree Dingo.
For most, the light weight of the Dingo makes it less effective from the rough than the Hypersteel counterparts tested. Those heavier hybrids have shown excellent abilities from the thick stuff. We have every reason to assume that the Dingo would perform as well with added swingweight. From the fairway, the lighter Dingo has been preferred, however.