Updated March 2015
The SoHG approves the following equipment for play in its tournaments and sanctioned events:
1) ANTIQUE WOOD SHAFTED CLUBS. This category is for equipment whose club heads were made prior to 1935 (PRIOR to Dec. 31, 1934). Antique clubs may be “updated” (restored) for play as follows:
- Club heads may be reattached with modern glues.
- Wood heads may have an insert installed into the club face using a technique that is in period.
- Clubs may be re-shafted with period or new shafts.
- Clubs may have weight added.
- Grips original to the club may continue to be used and, in addition, grips salvaged from another original club may be reapplied for use. Also, new replacement grips replicating grips of the pre-1935 era are allowed.
1. This guideline specifically disallows any modern “slip-on” rubber or similar type grip regardless of design of the grip surface.
2. Temporary “wraps” – typical of tennis and hockey – are allowed. They are not considered a proper replacememt for applying a new in-period” replica grip, but are allowed as a temporary aid for gripping the club. It is expected that these wraps be of a color in keeping with colors available in grips pre-1935.
- Wood heads may have a metal faceplate (known as an “spring face”) attached over the club head’s existing club face using a material and techniques that are in period. (Note: The “spring face” was an equipment “improvement” offered by several club companies. It was first patented by Currie in 1891 and used by Spalding on its Model-R wood. By 1902, a comany sold a face repair kit with a metal faceplate and two screws.)
- Generally, any repair or restoration that would have been performed during the pre-1935 era will be approved for use.
- Any question about repairs, renovations or restorations can be answered by the Equipment Committee. Robert Ahlschwede is the current Equipment Chair – firstname.lastname@example.org.
2) REPLICA WOOD SHAFTED CLUBS. This category is for equipment made to replicate, as nearly as possible, clubs that were made prior to 1935. A complete list of currently approved clubs follows:
Tad Moore Hickory Classics
Hickory golf clubs offered by Tad Moore are approved for SoHG play unless it is noted in his catalogs that a particular club is not approved.
Louisville Golf Co.
Hickory golf clubs offered by Louisville Golf are approved for SoHG play unless it is noted in its catalogs that a particular club is not approved.
St. Andrews Golf Company
Hickory golf clubs offered by the St. Andrews Golf Co. are approved for SoHG play unless it is noted in its catalogs that a particular club is not approved.
BTI Co. (playhickorygolf.com)
Players Special Edition of RTJ irons
Players Special Edition of Spalding/Wright & Ditson “Special Niblick”
Individual Replicated Clubs – This area is for clubs replicated by individuals not associated with established club making companies. Approved clubs will be listed as they are submitted and approved. Such list will be available and maintained on the SoHG website or may be obtained from the SoHG Equipment Committee.
- Russ Fisher – MacGregor World Win Series – driver, 2WD, brassie, 2WB, spoon, 2WS. Each club head and shaft will bear the maker’s mark and the series number.
- Zayden Alexander Fine Putters by Jeremy Wright – 1) the Orion putter replica; 2) Macanudo, replica of an early MacGregor brass putter.
- Jay Harris – Driver and a brassie replicating two MacGregor heads, with the “Hickory Nut” stamp on the head
3) RETROFITTED CLUBS. – This category was created for clubs that were made PRIOR to Dec. 31, 1934. Any wood headed club offered for sale prior to 1935, regardless of shaft material originally installed at time of manufacture may be retrofitted with a wooden shaft and be permitted for play in SoHG sanctioned events. Players must establish – independently or through the retrofitter or seller of these clubs – that the heads were indeed offered before 1935. No golf club designed and manufactured after Jan. 1, 1935 will be allowed in this category. It should be noted that no irons (iron headed clubs) have been approved to be retrofitted with a wood shaft for play.
4) LONG-SHAFTED PUTTERS. – As there is no rule forbidding the use of long putters today and there evidence of the use of long-shafted putters in the past – with and without an anchor point – the SoHG feels there is no need to make a rule or guideline about the use of such a club. The heads of submitted long putters should, of course, meet the SoHG guidelines on shape and size. This guideline does not apply to gutty-era play, also known as pre-1900 play, where such a club is not allowed.
5) GOLF BALLS. The following types of balls are approved for SOHG-sanctioned events:
- All USGA-approved golf balls.
- All USGA-approved balls that have been “re-molded” to replicate balls and the surface patterns from the pre-1935 era. That could include bramble, square mesh, line-cut, vintage round, and others not listed.
All balls offered by McIntyre Golf Company and Tad Moore Hickory Classics fit the above category and are approved for play, as well as older versions offered in the past by Play Hickory Inc.
The ball called the “Classic” offered by Brian Schuman has been approved for play in events following SoHG guidelines. The “Classic” is not re-molded, but manufactured with the original ATTI dimple pattern that was developed around 1910.
Individuals who re-mold balls for their own use are reminded to use USGA-approved balls and be prepared to show proof to avoid disqualification in SoHG-sanctioned events.
Clubs and balls that fall outside the above-mentioned criteria are not approved for tournament play by the SoHG and are discouraged from being used. Members of the SoHG should verify that their guests, or potential new members be equipped with clubs and balls that fall into one of the preceding categories.
APPROVAL OF CLUBS FOR PLAY. The SoHG Equipment Committee will review, in a timely manner, any club or club renovation submitted for approval to be used in hickory tournament play. Requests for equipment approval should be made through the chairman of the Equipment Committee; a form is available on the SoHG website that can be used for this purpose. Upon completion of the review process, the committee chairman will respond to and will explain the final decision to the submitting party.
The SoHG Board of Directors and general membership will be apprised of all decisions regarding equipment approval or disapproval. This will happen via the website, the official SoHG publication or the United States Postal Service.
Finally, clubs and balls that fall outside the above mentioned criteria are not approved for tournament play by the SoHG and are discouraged from being used. Members of the SoHG should verify that their guests, or potential new members, be equipped with clubs that fall into one of the preceding categories.
CLUB LIMIT FOR TOURNAMENT PLAY. There will be no limit on the number of clubs a competitor may carry.