Did You Know: Neck Design

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By Zack R., Team Titleist Staff

  • 16 Replies
  1. Team Titleist Staff

    Hi Team Titleist,

    Putters are personal. There’s no question. But while you may know whether you prefer a blade to a mallet — or vice versa — did you know that neck design and position on a putter head directly affects your performance on the green?

    For those who are unfamiliar, Scotty Cameron’s The Art of Putting breaks it down for us:

    Everyone needs toe flow. In order for the putter head to move squarely along the proper arcing path, the toe of the putter must "flow" throughout the stroke. How and where the neck or shaft of the putter joins the head determines its toe flow.

    • Shorter necks or shaft bends increase toe flow, resulting in a putter that swings more freely in an arc.
    • Longer necks or shaft bends decrease toe flow, supporting a less arcing stroke.
    • Shaft axis closer to a putter's heel increases flow, while shaft axis closer to the center (like straight shafted putters) produces a face-balanced putter for a straighter, more mechanical stroke.

    Now, of course it isn’t a cure for the inability to putt, but if you haven’t been properly fit then you’re doing yourself a disservice on the green. I personally got fit last year and uncovered some numbers that compelled me to put a Scotty Cameron Phantom X 7, which features a single mid-bend-shafted, straight into the bag to match up with my more neutral putting stroke — and I’ve been hooping from all over the putting surface.

    Tell us about your game, Team Titleist. Do you have more of an arced putting stroke? Are you more square-to-square? Next time you get fit for a putter, how much is toe flow going to influence your decision? 

  2. Pretty square with a straight back straight through. Awesome post!
  3. How how some more details, and maybe some human examples, of each of these strokes?
    Since I have over 20 SC putters you would think I could figure this out...
  4. Gary E

    Gary E
    Anderson, IN

    As putter fitting is a relatively new art compared to club fitting, are all Titlest fitters as good at fitting putters as they are clubs? I’ve been using a Scotty Cameron Circa 62 Model 3 for 15 or so years and struggling lately. How do I find a good putter fitter?
  5. I am an arc putter... what kind of neck should I have?
  6. Andrew A

    Andrew A
    Charlotte, NC

    toe flow and weight have always been a big part of my putter purchases. I have a slight arc and tend to lean towards putters with maximum toe flow. Currenlty game the California Del Mar but also have a Laguna 1.5 and a Newport 2.5. The mid mallet design of the Del Mar just fits my eye better.

    My dream would be able to game the Del Mar ButtonBack with the teryillium insert from 2010. Just a thing of beauty!! If anyone has any insights on how to obtain one, I'm all ears.


  7. Diego D

    Diego D
    Miami, FL

    I have a less arching putting stroke = 'square-to-square' and thus I had opted to stay away from blades.

    Over the years, I have had mini-mallets, semi/mid-mallets and mallets dating back to a couple of Zebras from the late 80s to the 2000s, my still beloved Scotty Cameron Golo in the early/mid 2010s and my former putter, a Spider (not a big fan), however, when the Scotty Cameron Newport 2 Notchback was released, I totally felt in love. I had the looks of a more traditional putter (blade), which I had always wanted, along with the performance and feel that one expects from the most important club in your bag.

    On my bucket list, there is a visit to Scotty Cameron Golf Gallery for a 'tour-like' putter fitting. My decision will be based on the numbers, toe flow, MOI, etc. because I'll go blindfolded :)

    In the meantime, I'll keep playing with my 'new' old faithful.
    Post Image
  8. Todd T

    Todd T
    San Diego, CA

    Slight arc to swing (what I feel), but I wouldn't know because Im looking at the hole during the putt. Scotty told me during my fitting that there should be an arc. To each their own!
  9. Mike M

    Mike M
    Marblehead MA

    I just switched putters a couple months ago from a 2012/14 GoLo 5 ; 10 gram weights; 35 inches; slight shaft bend to a 2012/14 GoLo S center shaft; 33 inches; 20 gram weights.Its the same head shape (slightly larger), shorter, heavier, center shaft.Unbelievable difference. My scoring average went down and my quota avg went up. My birdies per round went up. My three putts went down, and although I haven't had an actual handicap in years, based on scoring and quota its gone from 6 to 4 more or less.
  10. I started with an old 60s era Spalding that had a Wilson 8801 shape until it was stolen. Had a bullseye, and a 20s era hickory shafted Harry Verdon blade with too much loft while I was scratch.. Been on a classic Karsten for 20 yrs and as a 15 handicap, it is all about mechanics, speed, and line.
  11. All of this might be more meaningful to me if oil’ Scotty offered a decent selection of LH putters.
  12. Jamie L

    Jamie L
    Winnipeg, MB

    I wish Scotty would rotate his putter models for lefties. Every year it is the same Newport 2, Del Mar and one or two of the Phantom Xs.

    I have a Newport 2.5 that is almost 20 years old. I would love to buy a new Scotty but there hasn't been anything released with the Santa Fe neck since early 2000s. If the Newport 2.5 or Fastback 1.5 were released for lefites I'd have one of each.

    Scotty, change it up! The lefties are begging you!
  13. Sirhc

    Sacramento, CA

    (Very) slight arc.
    Had a great fitting a couple of years ago for a 34" Futura 5S. Was using a NP MidSlant (used), Red X and NP 2.5; all are 35". Found a used Red X2 as a backup.
    Post Image
  14. Fitted recently for a Special Select Flowback 5.5 that suits my eye and fits my arc. Lots of toe flow and forgiveness with unfussy graphics for alignment.
    Perhaps not as attractive as the Del Mar but pretty enough and very effective for me. Has improved my putting loads, especially those 8 to 12 footers. Has increased my confidence on the greens to the extent that I expect to hole putts rather than hitting and hoping!
  15. Don O

    Don O
    Madison, WI

    Went through a SAM fitting and I have a slight arc, so an "almost" face balanced toe flow putter is what I should be looking at. The Showcase fitter quoted that 85% of golfers think that they swing a putter straight and actually, 95% have some or more arc to their swing. Many golfers go to a store and buy a putter that appeals to their eye and based on holing putts on a mat, make a decision to buy. More often than not, they are compensating in their swing to meet the needs of the putter.

    The SAM fitting was a "wow" moment and I can see why a putter fitting is as or more important than a driver fitting. A typical round is driver for 14 shots (not counting provisional retakes...) and the goal is to get under 2 putts per hole. Now waiting for a Phantom X 7.5 to prove the fitting makes a difference and bring my 37 average closer to 30.

    Besides getting the correct length, loft, lie and arc, the fitting also recommended grips and pointed out inconsistencies in back/forward swing length and contact consistency on the center of the face. My greatest fault is aim, so I got tips from the fitter on how to improve that. And yes, I need to use an alignment stripe on the putter and ball to get on the line I read.
  16. Deno

    New Jersey

    Here's my thought on the arc. The Tour players who use the claw grip and various non conventional grips can't use an arc motion without the lead hand, even slightly, twisting away from the line. Very difficult to return the putter head to alignment. The same with the long putters. I'm guessing they are straight back and through without an arc motion.

  17. Mike M

    Mike M
    Marblehead MA

    I think you're right Deno. I use a claw grip for short putts in tight to keep my right hand from taking over and manipulating the club head, thus decreasing toe flow. The move I made from a slight bend heel shaft to a dead straight center shaft has made a big difference as well.

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