Club Champion (Philadelphia) Fitting review

wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
I wanted to take a moment to post about a very positive experience that I recently had at Club Champion in Bala Cynwyd right outside of Philly. As most of us know it is often hard to find a shop that has someone that knows what they are doing, who can help put you in the proper equipment by using their skills along with technology, and most importantly knowing that you can trust that they will do the right thing and not just try to put you in the most expensive gear. I figured I'd share my experience because it is becoming harder to find honest people and businesses who really know what they are doing. Hopefully this will help some on gwrx find that in the Philly area. Sorry if this is the wrong forum, please move if it needs to be.



For those of you who aren't familiar w/ Club Champion they focus on fitting. They aren't a retail store, you don't walk in to see a wall full of built retail clubs with plastic on them. You walk in and see a relaxed environment with a few couches, large tv on the wall, build room, putting green, and two fitting bays. Not your typical golf store. I went through "The Ultimate" bag fitting, which is essentially the entire bag...putter-driver. I'm currently a 12-13hc that is probably losing 2-3 strokes / round due to putting and 2-3 on poor shots (fat/thin...blah blah). I don't practice enough, so consistency is my main issue. Driver swing speed is around 90 and 6i was around 80 so I'm playing regular flex, working on bringing that up, gained 10mph since I started playing 4 yrs ago.



Fitting process:

First step was to sit down for 15 minutes or so to talk about my current bag setup and what I was looking to accomplish with the fitting. We discussed the clubs I was comfortable with and just wanted to optimize and the clubs that I was willing to replace. This is a very important step so that you can communicate what you are looking to get out of the fitting and so they can provide the proper suggestions to get you there. A lot of people from the area know Jim Yenser, he worked at Golfdom and Golf by Design and is now the GM at the Philly Club Champion. You will not find anyone who is as easy to work with as Jim, and who will make sure you get what you need. Excellent fitter, and excellent attitude.



They have a proprietary hosel/tip adapter that they use on all their heads and shafts. You aren't limited to what each manufacturer has in their fitting carts. You can try EVERYTHING from any shaft mfg or head mfg. You don't get this anywhere else.



We decided to focus on irons first since I was looking to move out of my current set (A4 Forged w/ Matrix Studio graphite), I've played with them the last 2 years but I felt that I could probably use a bit more forgiveness and wasn't sure if those shafts were working out for me. We went into the fitting bay and started getting warmed up and got a baseline of my A4 Forged 6i. They use a Trackman (they have two of them actually, one for each bay so it isn't the rinky dink Zelocity setup they have in one bay at golf galaxy), they have a selection of balls to give you one that is the same (or very similar) to what you play so you get accurate readings. One thing was clear when we got a few flushed shots...spin was through the roof. 6,600rpm/20* launch angle/102mph ball speed. Went through a number of different heads until we got to Mizzy JPX 825 Pros. I need graphite to help out w/ my wrist/elbow issues so we were trying a number of different graphite. In most of the heads the Steelfibers were the ticket. With the 825 pro my numbers were much better when making solid contact, but wasn't too consistent. This is where Club Champion shines. Jim started adjusting swing weight to dial in what worked for my swing. We tried different weight shafts, adding lead tape, etc. They have a swing weight scale right in the bays so the process is very fast and you get to see immediate results. After dialing in with a 825 pro head, steel fiber 80i reg at d3.5 I was consistently hitting the ball solid and I was blow away by how much better it felt for my swing. As you can see, the numbers are kinda amazing. Big difference was the good strikes were much more solid (smash is way up from the A4), spin is in check and ball speed is up.

A4: 6,600rpm/1.29 smash/20* launch angle/102mph ball speed/140 carry/150 total

825pro: 4,400rpm/1.37 smash/17.5* launch angle/109mph ball speed/157 carry/174 total

We then took a few measurements, hit some balls off the lie board and noted the specs.



Next was wedges. I was actually pretty happy with what I had and wasn't looking to really get much out of the wedge fitting side. As most of you know, wedges are all about how you feel with them. Currently playing a CG15 single dot 56*, easy to open up and I'm comfortable with it. 50* Jaws CC slate c-grind. Just basically checked lie angle and lofts, adjusted to fit gaps and lie a bit better. The 56* was a bit too upright which makes sense because I generally miss left with the 56 where most other misses are right. Adjustments were made right there, since they have a Mitchell Tour Gauge right in the bay to verify changes.



Since this was a full bag fitting, I didn't have enough time to complete it in one session. They were happy to allow me to come back a 2nd time to finish the rest. I also hit a ton of balls when figuring out the irons so I was getting tired.



2nd session I focused on the long game. Driver, FW, Hybrid and then putter.

Not being a long hitter, I wanted to maximize my driving distance. I also thought I could get a bit more out of a different shaft. Current gamer is the Razr Hawk 10.5 draw w/ stock RIP. The shaft actually wasn't too bad for me off the shelf, but I did tend to lose the ball a bit to the right on bad swings. I wanted to correct that as much as possible. I didn't mind the low flight for me since I don't have to carry much on my main course and I get decent roll. I have a 10.5 Razr Fit with Fubuki Alpha 50 reg that I picked up pretty cheap and brought that in as the new head, and pretty much wanted to fit into a shaft. Same process, try different shafts, weights, etc to figure out what worked best.

Razr Hawk: 2,420rpm/1.45 smash/14.6* launch angle/128mph ball speed/200 carry/232 total

Razr Fit (fubuki a 50): 2,980rpm/1.45 smash/14.5* launch angle/131.6mph ball speed/208 carry/235 total (max height was 24.7yd with the fubuki a vs the RH RIP at 21.2)

Razr Fit (devotion 4): 2,787rpm/1.47 smash/14.2* launch angle/131.4mph ball speed/208 carry/236 total (23y max height) The biggest difference here was in accuracy. With the fubuki I was on average 7.3y to the right (fade), with the Devotion I was 0.7y right. So once I get the money, a devotion is going in there...or I am waiting for the RF extreme. Currently also toying around with an AXE superlight.



Next moved onto hybrids and FW. Hybrids weren't set, so we went through the normal process. Currently playing FTiz 3 and 4h, mashie 5h. Ended up settling on a RBZ 25* and RBZ 22* with Miyazaki Kua 59. Fairway: I have an Adams A3os XTD 5W that I love. I have a ton of shafts and we figured out a shaft that would work better for me. The stock DVS spun a lot, so we needed to bring the flight down a bit. Decided on putting a Purple Ice in it. Since I went from 3 hybrids down to 2, I now have room for another wedge, and will probably put a std bounce 60* in play now.



Putter- They have a SAM putt lab. Amazing amount of data this thing can provide. I have too many putters, and after Jim saw my stroke and we talked about my issues he said to focus on the face balanced mallets. I had the best success with them over the years and he agreed that they fit me best.



Ordering - Extremely flexible with how this is handled. Since they don't stock retail stuff, they order heads from the OEMs and BUILD CLUBS ON SITE! Any set makeup you want, they can order and build to your fitted specs. Loft/lie/length/sw/grinds can all be handled there. They have a PURE machine in one of their Chicago locations that they can send your shafts to (IIRC, if you buy wood/hybrid shafts from them the price includes PUREing, irons are extra). I ended up bringing a set of 825pros to Jim, he ordered the 80i steel fibers, FLO'd them, built the clubs to my SW with my grips, installed the purple ice in the 5w....so they can definitely work with you. Their shaft prices are reasonable and you really aren't going to beat the prices of the heads knowing you are getting shafts that fit you and having them assembled to your specs.



Bottom line:

They fit you for everything. Two Trackmans in one location and SAM putt lab, full tour level build shop (pretty much all Mitchell stuff), almost any shaft/head combo that you could want. They are golf nuts like most of us here. They have all the brands we love. They have a fitting system that works. Having worked with Jim in the past at Golfdom and Golf by Design, it was a no brainer for me to see what Club Champion had to offer and I was really blown away. I normally wouldn't take this much time to review something but we rarely find a place like this around anymore and I wanted to make sure to give credit to what they have going on there. I think they are running some great specials for groups, so check in with them. They are giving discounts on fittings when you book with a few people.



Here are a few pics:

clubchamp1.JPG clubchamp2.JPG clubchamp3.JPG clubchamp4.JPG clubchamp5.JPG clubchamp6.JPG
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Comments

  • Noyes26Noyes26 Members Posts: 1,898 ✭✭
    very very cool. Was not aware something like this was so close to home. Mind giving me a little insight on cost of the process? If not on here in a PM would be great. Thanks again for this, makes me excited to go visit!
    PING G400 LST 10* Tensei Pro Orange
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  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    Here is a link to the current deal they have (you can do the math image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' /> )

    http://www.clubchampiongolf.com/about-us/offers



    Basically they are running a special right now where if you have 1 person getting fit=30% off, 2 people=50% off, 3 or more=70% off.

    If you get 3 people to go....you can get a full bag fitting for around $100. Which is absolutely INSANE when you think about it. I'm actually blown away, because I paid a lot more than that. You aren't going to find anywhere else that will fit you on a Trackman and SAM Putt Lab for that price, ever. Sorry if that sounds like a commercial, but my jaw kinda dropped when I read that flyer. I just can't believe that price. It is even cheaper than the crappy fitting you'd get at golf galaxy for their "platinum" fitting. Even if you just walk away with numbers from the trackman and SAM putt lab it is worth the cost. Can't stress enough how good Jim is with fitting and club building.



    If anyone in the area is looking to get fit, this would probably be the time to do it. I'm sure there are a ton of GWRX guys that would want to get in on this.



    For reference, here are the list prices for their fittings http://www.clubchampiongolf.com/fitting
  • MobMob Just Another Lefty Members Posts: 3,484 ✭✭
    Sounds like a top notch fitting process. You are lucky to have something like that near you.
    Epic Flash Subzero with Tensei Pro Orange 60S shaft vs. Cobra F9 Tour length with Tensei Pro Orange 60S shaft
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  • CBJCBJ Members Posts: 1,174 ✭✭
    Jim Yenser is one of the best, he fit me several times when I lived in Allentown..
    Cobra F9 w/ Accra TZ 6 M4
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    Cobra F8+ 5-Wood - Mitsubishi Thump 75
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    Toulon Memphis Putter
  • squishyysquishyy Members Posts: 1,366 ✭✭
    If anyone is interested in doing the fitting I would like to take advantage of the 3 person fitting discount special. Please count me in for the full package.
    Taylormade M2 10.5* // Kuro Kage TiNi 60
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  • detroit59detroit59 Members Posts: 120
    Wundej,



    Approximately how long did it take for the full bag fitting? Looks like you spread yours up over two days, so I'm curious how long the entire process took.



    Thanks.
  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    detroit59 wrote:


    Wundej,



    Approximately how long did it take for the full bag fitting? Looks like you spread yours up over two days, so I'm curious how long the entire process took.



    Thanks.




    It all depends on what you are looking for. If you are looking to buy all new equipment, it would probably be 4 hrs. In my case I knew I wanted new irons, so that process took the longest. I tried 6-10 different heads, then once settling on a head, we spent another 1/2 hr or so tuning swing weight by trying different shafts and lead tape on the head. My wedges were pretty set, so loft/lie was checked and adjusted a little bit. Hybrids were new too, so that took some time. FW, just optimized by trying shafts. Driver, I wanted to go to the Razr Fit so we tried the a lot of shafts with that.



    I'd say actual fitting time for me was 2.5-3hrs. We talked a lot during the process, I ask a lot of questions (this is how I know Jim is easy to work with...he put up with me and my questions and is always happy to explain what he's thinking) so that took up a lot of time too.
  • shovelershoveler Members Posts: 454
    squishyy wrote:


    If anyone is interested in doing the fitting I would like to take advantage of the 3 person fitting discount special. Please count me in for the full package.






    Me and my friend need one more person to make three. Pls keep us in mind. Maybe we can sign up as a threesome and pay and show up at different times.
  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    shoveler wrote:

    squishyy wrote:


    If anyone is interested in doing the fitting I would like to take advantage of the 3 person fitting discount special. Please count me in for the full package.






    Me and my friend need one more person to make three. Pls keep us in mind. Maybe we can sign up as a threesome and pay and show up at different times.


    Almost positive you can. In the Chicago CC thread they said that they just had to call the same day and they'd get them setup. Call the store, tell them golfwrx sent you image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' /> Jim will take good care of you guys.
  • AnwellAnwell Members Posts: 320 ✭✭
    shoveler wrote:

    squishyy wrote:


    If anyone is interested in doing the fitting I would like to take advantage of the 3 person fitting discount special. Please count me in for the full package.






    Me and my friend need one more person to make three. Pls keep us in mind. Maybe we can sign up as a threesome and pay and show up at different times.


    For $100 full bag message me for detail. I'm interested.
  • avinashavinash Members Posts: 147
    Anwell wrote:

    shoveler wrote:

    squishyy wrote:


    If anyone is interested in doing the fitting I would like to take advantage of the 3 person fitting discount special. Please count me in for the full package.






    Me and my friend need one more person to make three. Pls keep us in mind. Maybe we can sign up as a threesome and pay and show up at different times.


    For $100 full bag message me for detail. I'm interested.




    I am interested in this as well.
  • Lefty94Lefty94 Members Posts: 1,513 ✭✭
    Wait....such a place exists near me? I live about an hour and 15 from Philly but I get down that way for work once or twice a month. I am definitely stopping at this place.
    XR 16 9.5 Fubuki ZT
    XR 16 15* PX 6.0
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  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    Lefty94 wrote:


    Wait....such a place exists near me? I live about an hour and 15 from Philly but I get down that way for work once or twice a month. I am definitely stopping at this place.


    I know, I was kinda blown away that there wasn't more talk about it when they opened. After going through the process I felt like I should post that review because many of us on here would love it. With the prices for this promo, it is really something that nobody can even come close to matching. Wish I needed to get fit for more stuff image/russian_roulette.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':russian_roulette:' />



    I live up near Allentown so it is about 1-1:15 minutes to get there from my place. Well worth the drive.
  • Dr.JPDr.JP Members Posts: 461 ✭✭
    Great review...I had my fitting there back in September by Jim as well...pretty much the same experience, AMAZING! when I was done with my iron fitting I felt like I had played 36, he had me try so many options until I got the absolute right one. That place is like golf ****. Love it, going back for hybrid fitting and taking my friend for the 50% off.
  • avinashavinash Members Posts: 147
    Anyone interested in buying this fitting package? I want to buy the full bag but can use some additional discount image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />



    Let me know if interested and we can signup. Thanks.
  • Dat_DudeDat_Dude Members Posts: 1,075 ✭✭
    I would be interested in a long game fitting package. I am not sure I need irons since I was fitted for my i20's even though it wasn't on a launch monitor. Maybe I should to verify that they are the right fit shaft-wise though.



    Avinash, I will PM you.
    2G0gwPW.png EPIC Flash Sub Zero w/AD-TP 6S. Iomic Sticky Grip
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  • ChappieChappie Let's play sometime! Members Posts: 3,585 ✭✭
    edited Mar 15, 2013 #18
    I'd really like to get down for a putter fitting. Might do this after my tax return comes.
    D - JDM SLDR 9*
    3w - RBZ Stage 2 tour
    5w - r7 tp 17.5*
    3h - RBZ stage 2 tour
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  • robbie91robbie91 Members Posts: 3,091 ✭✭
    Nice man!! I'm glad you made it over there. It was nice to see you the other day at GG.



    As I've said in previous threads Club Champion is excellent. My fitting there was a fantastic experience and I can say that the stuff I got fit for flat out performs.
    TaylorMade M5 10.5* // Mitsubishi Tensei Orange 60X
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  • ephmenephmen Members Posts: 220 ✭✭
    I was fitted by Jim when he was at Golf By Design in King of Prussia. My G15s are perfectly fitted and I have the utmost confidence in them. Jim is a great guy who really knows his stuff!
  • AnwellAnwell Members Posts: 320 ✭✭
    I'm going this Saturday for a full bag with Jim. Should I expect for dish out 1k plus for any set of iron?
  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    Anwell wrote:


    I'm going this Saturday for a full bag with Jim. Should I expect for dish out 1k plus for any set of iron?


    It all depends on what set and what shafts. Keep in mind that a lot of the current sets are somewhat pricey to begin with, and when you go with a non stock shaft offering (if that is what you are fit into) it would be an upcharge regardless. Make sure you ask him what you get with them building the clubs. They will basically tear them down, swing weight, adjust lies, etc. You'll get them correct, unlike a number of stories you read about specs being way off on custom sets from the factory.



    If you are fit into (or want to keep the set you have) then it becomes much cheaper because you are only talking shafts. Either way, just explain what you are looking for price wise and what you want to reuse if possible. They will work with you.
  • Big DozerBig Dozer Members Posts: 1,021 ✭✭
    Been considering this while in the ATL for the weekend. Going to their new location on Friday and will post my experience as well. Thanks for the info OP.
  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    Big Dozer wrote:


    Been considering this while in the ATL for the weekend. Going to their new location on Friday and will post my experience as well. Thanks for the info OP.


    No problem. It is cool to see that they are expanding. It is an experience that people on this site would definitely enjoy. I'll definitely be going back there every so often, I can't wait to get out and play with the stuff that I got fitted for at the end of the year. Only played 1 round since then.
  • leadfoot_mfleadfoot_mf Members Posts: 170
    I am having a driver fitting in atl on saturday. I had hot stix do a fitting for me last year. They have since closed the atl facility down. Stopped by last night and saw that Bill Johnstone who did my last fitting is there. Will do the whole bag but only have time for driver this sat.
  • AnwellAnwell Members Posts: 320 ✭✭
    I did a iron/hybrid/fwy fitting with Jim yesterday. The experience was amazing. Despite Jim pulled his back yesterday morning, he still toughed it out like a solider. I enjoyed the process very much. Only downside, they didnt have all that many choices as a lefty ( I am used to it). Their pricing is a little bit on the expensive side, but I am planning on getting 913H with accra dymatch shaft from them. Its gonna cost about $450 to that combination.
  • letokiletoki Members Posts: 5
    Thinking of getting a full bag fitting at Club Champion in Hackensack ("CC").



    I am trying to understand pricing of purchasing clubs through CC. Am I correct that the cost of the clubs would essentially be at MSRP for the standard club set up plus cost of custom shafts and grips. Or will CC match the big box actual retail pricing for the club and then charge on top of that for custom options like shafts and grip? Any specific examples would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
  • wundejwundej ClubWRX Posts: 3,758 ClubWRX
    letoki wrote:


    Thinking of getting a full bag fitting at Club Champion in Hackensack ("CC").



    I am trying to understand pricing of purchasing clubs through CC. Am I correct that the cost of the clubs would essentially be at MSRP for the standard club set up plus cost of custom shafts and grips. Or will CC match the big box actual retail pricing for the club and then charge on top of that for custom options like shafts and grip? Any specific examples would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.


    You should call and talk to them. You don't have to buy the clubs there. They can just do the club work if you aready have the stuff.



    Generally I think you pay retail, they pull the shafts, swing weight (I think all graphite hybrid, FW, driver shafts are pured, but don't quote me on that), adjust loft/lie and install. You basically are paying for the unending variety of shafts, some tour options in some cases, and a fully built club. Really tough to get that from any big box store so I doubt they "price match", it isn't Walmart. Heck, I couldn't even get Golf Galaxy to PM their own website one time.
  • letokiletoki Members Posts: 5
    Thanks, I don't mind paying for the fitting, customizing or the standard shafts, but I don't want to essentially overpay for new heads. I'll give them a call to discuss.
  • NolesNoles Members Posts: 1,444 ✭✭
    I am thinking of going for a Driver, Fairway wood and hybrid fitting soon. Is it hard to get an appointment?
  • Ayoung19Ayoung19 Members Posts: 1,644 ✭✭
    Probably the first time I've been glad to see a 2 year old thread pop up. Found out there's a CC near me in Boston now, definitely something I would be interested in doing based on what I've read here.
    TM M1 460 Fujikura Pro 73X
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