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PING

Ping was the first manufacturer to offer high-quality cast clubs, which both reduced costs, allowed better quality control for high tech features and set the stage for manufactured fitting.

Ping was also the first to offer factory fitting, via a variety of clubheads in different lies and offsets. Beginning about 1980 Ping began offering their fitting program based on a checklist of the player’s physical characteristics, common problems and distances.

The 2011 checklist at the Ping website contained approximately 100 data inputs and was part of a 5-step fitting process covering everything from driver to putter.

To make custom fitting more feasible, Ping manufactures some iron clubheads with a small notch in the clubhead. The notch allows the clubhead to be bent to the required specification without the danger of breaking the clubhead as was the problem for previous models.

Solheim began PING golf as a garage business. His frustration during the game of golf resulted from his difficulty putting with the putters of the era. The engineer from General Electric invented a new putter in his garage known as the “PING 1A”. The name “PING” came from the sound that Solheim heard as the metal struck the ball.

In 1961, the Solheims moved from Redwood City, California to Phoenix, Arizona where the company would find a permanent home. Despite the increasing sales of the PING putter, Solheim continued to create his putters single-handedly in his garage after departing General Electric.

In the same year, he invented his first set of irons which he named “69”, which he considered to be a good round of golf. Solheim continued to experiment with the effects of good heel-toe weighting in his irons and also milled a cavity into the steel back of the irons for added forgiveness.