This Just Might Be The Anser
Feb 7, 2008 (Updated Feb 9, 2008)
Review by Bill Brott
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Options galore in length, hosels, and shafts, and necks. Wonderful feel. Deadly Accurate.
Cons:Didn't come out sooner.
The Bottom Line: If you prefer insert putters to metal faces, you can get one of these reasonably priced, highly effective putters to suit almost any taste.
This is one of the many putters I have tried lately as I zero in on what's right and wrong w/my putting stroke. I used to love a blade putter when I stroked the ball in an arc like fashion. The Titleist Bullseye and Ping Anser putters held esteemed positions in my bag. As I got older, and began to rely more heavily on the pendulum stroke, I found that mallet putters with balanced faces, and higher MOI's were definitely more to my liking. Now, however, I've found myself in a quandry that I should probably talk myself out of. As much as I like my mallet putters, I'm beginning to find their size and mass just a shade distracting at address. My eye is longing for cleaner lines, but my mind recalls that horrible bout of "The Yips" which I had developed w/my old blades.
Recommend this product?
When I spotted this model of the I-Series--"The 1/2 Craz-E", I ended up trying the first compromise putter I've ever seen that suits both styles of putting equally well. Yes--this just might be the answer. Well it might also be "The Anser, The 1/2 Moon, The B-60, The Piper H or even a Zing." You see, Ping has come up w/a new insert that is so wonderful, that they've bet the farm on it. All those old names w/strong traditions are blended in with the new. As I have a strong penchant for Center Shafted Putters, I tried out the 1/2 Craz-E. It's a real monster for several reasons.
Why Didn't Anyone Think of This before?
This is a blade/mallet/flange/ hybrid shape that remains pleasing to the eye and probably should have come out long ago. It gives one the confidence that heavy mass and higher MOI's of a mallet offer, while maintaining the cleaner lines usually associated w/blades. I tried both styles of putting with it, and had equally positive results in exceution from three foot knee-knockers to 30 foot lags. Whether Arc or Pendulum stroking, this is a well balnced, well crafted putter. Ping--you've done it again!
Well what's not to like about a company who is willing to stick their neck out in defiance of some of the very fundamentals that brought them into greatness? For openers, it's quite possible that they've outdone the well respected "Odyssey" line of putters in the insert department. Gone is the well known metallic "PING" on a well stroked putt, however, feel remains phenomenal in a different way. Insert w/in Insert isn't a new concept, but usually it's done w/completely different materials. (Little metal insert in a polymer insert, etc..) This time Ping decided to use Urethane w/in Urethane.
The firmer Urethane runs along the vast majority of the face. In the center, however is a nice soft Urethane which offers just the right proportions of cling and pop. The ball feels smooth as silk coming off the putter's face, and offers up plenty of distance w/out being "Thuddy". Currently, after trying several of "Odyssey's" models, I feel comfortable in saying that "Odyssey has been out done at their own game in much the same way that they themselves outdid the old "STX" line of putters. At one time "STX" was "The Recognized Leader" in both insert putters and the insert technology itself.
"Okay, great. Another putter w/the latest greatest insert. Big deal! You call that technology?"--Not so fast there Monkey Boy! The insert is just the beginning on this crazy thing. It's no wonder they call this 1/2 Craz-E. Too bad full fledged Craz-E was already taken, because this thing is Crazier Than A Patsy Cline Tune. Not only does it look sort of like two blade putters w/a back weighted suspension bridge, sort of like a super-flange on steroids, but the optic alignment graphics are huge, center spaced, and look like a 1/2 eaten psychedelic moon pie which bridges the entire mass. Obviously, a picture is worth a thousand words.
As weird as all that sounds, and despite the bright colours in the alignment lines, it is not distracting at all. The basic black background helps soothe the eye, while the bright orange and white colours of the alignment lines offer enough contrast to help you focus on alignment.
If you prefer a center shaft (my preference) or a plumbers neck is of little consequence. They are both equally effective, and help show that this thing has more options than a stock broker in a bull market.
Speaking of options let's begin right here. Seven different basic models. Shaft lengths in one inch increments from 33"-37". Then there's the line of these for Belly putter all the way to Long/Chin Putter. They come in lengths of 41,42,43,48,49, and 50". Heel shafted-center shafted-plumber's neck--you name it. Short putter all the way to chin putter. There's one of these to suit almost any taste. "Hey Ping--are you Craz-E?"
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