How many different putter shaft designs have you used in your golfing career? According to Golf.com’s Jonathan Wall, professionals and amateurs prefer to play with a heel-shafted putter instead of a center-shafted option.
In this article, we are taking the path less traveled as we aim to discover the six best center shafted putters on the market. Throughout the article, we will uncover the features and benefits of these putters to help you decide if any of them work for your game.
- What Is A Center Shafted Putter?
- The Best Center Shafted Putters
What Is A Center Shafted Putter?
As the name suggests, a center shafted putter connects the head to the shaft in the middle. This construction enables manufacturers to distribute the weight of the putter head to the heel and toe, which provides a stable putter head for a straight-back and through motion.
Who Should Use A Center Shafted Putter?
In this video, Golfweek’s David Dusek explains that a center shafted putter is most effective for players whose hands and eyes are in line with the ball at setup. The center shaft and minimal offset help these golfers achieve a more accurate line.
Why Do So Few Players Use A Center Shafted Putter?
Dusek explains in this video that most players on The European and PGA tours prefer a hell-shafted putter.
The reason is that these players prefer to position their hands in front of the putter’s head. As a result, they have a clear view of the alignment aid and ball at address for additional confidence.
Center shafted putters impair your view of the alignment feature and ball, making it harder to determine if you are aiming along the correct line.
Surprisingly, the Golf Week equipment Guru mentions that more players on the Japanese Tour prefer a center shaft to those players on The PGA or European Tours.
Are Center Shafted Putters Illegal?
In this article, Golfweek’s M.L. Rose details the history surrounding center-shafted putters. While these putters have been legal in The United States for a considerable period, this design was illegal in The United Kingdom from 1909 to 1951.
In 1951 the USGA and R&A agreed to standardize the rules of putters. This lead to the subsequent legalization of these clubs throughout the world.
Are All Center Shafted Putters Face-Balanced?
The reality is that not all center-shafted putters are face-balanced. The advancement of technology has enabled manufacturers to place center-shafted putters towards the heel. As a result, you gain more visibility of the alignment aid and the ball, but the putter is not face-balanced.
What Are The Benefits Of A Center Shafted Putter?
One of the advantages of center-shafted putters is their ability to balance the face and reduce the risk of you opening it at impact.
Furthermore, the weight balance of a center-shafted putter aids in reducing face twist during your stroke. As a result, it keeps the putter face square through the stroke to send your ball on its desired line.
Finally, a center-shafted putter helps to promote a pendulum putting stroke rather than an arc. I have played with a center-shafted putter for most of my career for these reasons.
What Are The Disadvantages Of A Center Shafted Putter?
The non-offset center shafted putter is not suited to players who use the arc putting technique. This technique requires you to twist the putter’s head through the stroke to square the face up at impact, which is difficult to achieve with stable center-shafted putters.
Additionally, if you play with a heel-shafted putter, you are likely used to placing your hands in front of the head. If you do that with a center-shafted putter you will lower the loft too much, causing the ball to bounce instead of roll.
Quick Overview: Our Top Picks for 6 The Best Center Shafted Putters
|Cleveland Huntington Beach Soft Premier 10.5C Putter||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|Wilson Infinite South Side Putter||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|Ping Tyne C Putter||VIEW LATEST PRICE →|
|SeeMore FGP Black Mallet Putter||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|TaylorMade Truss TB2 Putter||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|Ray Cook Silver Ray SR595||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
The Best Center Shafted Putters
1. Cleveland Huntington Beach Soft Premier 10.5C Putter
- Exceptional feel
- Excellent speed and distance control
- Optimal roll
- Premium look
- Unimpressive alignment aid
- Judging the weight of putts with a mallet head may prove to be challenging if switching from a traditional blade
Cleveland’s Huntington Beach Soft Premier 10.5c is a mallet head putter featuring optimal face balance and a grey satin finish for a clean look and extra durability.
Cleveland employed the use of their Speed Optimized Face Technology to enhance your distance and speed control. The technology also maintains your ball speed, even on heel and toe strikes, to ensure consistency and forgiveness.
Furthermore, the putter features a diamond CNC milled face designed to enhance friction and deliver a smooth feel and a pure roll.
The downside of this putter is that the alignment aid is on the bottom of the face, resulting in limited assistance at the address. However, the feel, speed, and forgiveness of this putter suit mid-handicappers with a straight stroke.
2. Wilson Infinite South Side Putter
- Consistent roll and distance control
- Clear and simple alignment feature
- Keeps the face square and balanced through the stroke
- Anti-glare finish eliminates distraction at address.
- The mallet head design is off-putting for traditionalists
- The putter is heavy and can be challenging to judge the weight of your stroke, especially if you are switching from a blade putter.
The Infinite South Side putter is an affordable mallet head design by Wilson. The putter features a double milled face designed to provide exceptional distance control and roll.
Added to the club’s superior distance control is its counterbalance technology, designed for those of you with a smoother stroke, aiming to limit any face rotation.
Wilson added a dark anti-glare finish for maximum comfort at address. Along with accentuating lines for enhanced alignment.
Finally, the Infinite South Side putter is fitted with an oversized grip littered with perforations for a more comfortable feel. The grip design enhances the putter stability in your hand and combines with the counterbalance technology to resist twisting.
Those of you with a straight putting stroke will enjoy the Infinite South Side. However, the chunky mallet head design may not get the approval of traditionalists.
In saying that, this putter offers excellent value for money and is one to consider for mid and high handicappers on a budget.
The Ping Tyne C mallet putter features heel and toe tungsten weighting to stabilize the head through the stroke producing increased MOI for optimal forgiveness. The putter’s dual durometer insert partners with shallow grooves for a soft-feel and smooth roll.
The front layer of the dual durometer is a soft Pebax material that aids your cause on shorter putts. And the firmer back layer provides optimal distance control on longer strokes.
Ping employed three materials to construct the Tyne C putter, including 17-4 stainless steel, tungsten, and aluminum. The three combine to enhance the MOI and forgiveness of the club. Finally, the putter sports an alignment feature on the back of the mallet to start your ball on the right line every time.
The Tyne C is one of 12 putters in Ping’s 2021 range, but it is the only one designed for players with a straight stroke. The combination of forgiveness, speed and distance control make this an ideal putter for high single-digit and mid-handicap golfers.
4. SeeMore FGP Black Mallet Putter
- Optimal alignment feature
- Promotes a square face at impact
- Glare resistant
- Buttery soft feel
- The black glare-resistant coat wears away quickly.
- The weight of the mallet putter head may cause you to put too much weight on your putts
Golfweek’s M.L. Rose explains that SeeMore putters have been around since 1998 and rose to prominence thanks to the late Payne Stewart and Zach Johnson. Each of them won a major using the company’s putters. The FGP features the traditional blade and mallet design of their original products, offering a classic look with the forgiveness of a mallet.
As is the case with all SeeMore putters, the FGP features their patented RifleScope Technology (RST), making life easier to line up your putts.
The shaft on this putter is slightly off-center, positioned towards the heel of the club. That paves the way for an unobstructed view of the alignment feature.
The milled putter face is finished with a black powder coating, designed to eradicate glare. Finally, the FGP Mallet is face balanced, promoting a square putter face at impact. This design best suits players with a straight back and through stroke.
If you struggle with alignment and position your hands directly above the ball. Then SeeMore’s FGP Mallet putter could be valuable to your game.
5. TaylorMade Truss TB2 Putter
- The putter face is designed to twist less at impact
- Optimal stability at impact
- Provides increased topspin
- Delivers improved roll
- Contains adjustable sole weights for the ideal CG position
- The two topline connection points are an eye-sore
The TaylorMade Truss TB2 putter features a unique two-topline connection that stabilizes the face at impact and reduces unsupported weight. The company states that this putter is as forgiving as a mallet while maintaining a traditional appearance.
Furthermore, the putter design limits twisting on your backspin to ensure a squarer face through impact.
Besides the stability of the Truss TB2, TaylorMade fitted it with their trademark with their Cobalt Blue Pure Roll insert. The insert contains 45-degree grooves that partner with a soft polymer to deliver optimal topspin and roll.
Finally, this putter is fitted with adjustable sole weights to help you position the CG optimally for your putting stroke and achieve the ideal swing weight.
While this putter provides exceptional stability, topspin, roll, and reduced face twist, it comes at a premium price. Overall, I think mid-handicappers who like a center-shafted putter but seek the forgiveness provided by a mallet may find the TB2 beneficial.
6. Ray Cook Silver Ray SR595
- Considerable balance for a square face on your backswing and follow-through
- Three color options
- Prominent alignment feature
- The wider grip encourages less wrist action for a straighter stroke
- Incredibly affordable
- It does not contain an insert to optimize topspin and roll
- Only available to right-handers
Although Ray Cook clubs are not as renowned as TaylorMade, Cleveland, and Wilson’s of the world, it is a brand steeped in history. Ray Cook has been producing putters since 1963 and has been in the bag for over 200 Tour victories.
The Silver Ray 595 forms part of the company’s “Limited Edition” range. And it is one of the most affordable putters on the market. Ray Cook has designed a stylish mallet head putter available in navy blue, green, and red.
In addition to the color options are heel and toe weighting to balance the face for stability through your stroke. The weights stick out the back of the putter that proves a distraction at address.
Topping off a uniquely designed putter are three parallel lines that aid you in aligning your putter face with your desired target.
Considering the affordable price tag, the Ray Cook SR595 is an ideal putter for a beginner or high handicapper on a budget.
At the start of this article, we intended to identify the seven best center shafted putters on the market. Along the way, we determined that these putter designs are not as common as heel-shafted putters. And, they are best suited to those of us with a straight stroke.
Most putters in this category contain face balance that resists twisting during your putting stroke to remain square throughout.
Given these considerations, we determined that the SeeMore FGP Mallet is the overall best center shafted putter on the market. While it is not as affordable as a Ray Cook SR595, it is far more inexpensive than a Ping Tyne C, Heppler Piper C, or TaylorMade Truss TB2.
Furthermore, the SeeMore FGP Mallet offers superior alignment technology. A buttery soft feel, and it is glare resistant for fewer distractions at address. Overall, it is a premium product at a mid-range price and is worth considering if you struggle with alignment.
If the SeeMore FGP Mallet has piqued your interest, you can take a closer look at the specs here.
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Nick Lomas is the founder of GolfSpan, an avid golfer, not quite a pro but has over 15-years of experience playing and coaching golfers from all over the world. His mission is to bring the golfing community a better experience then it comes to choosing the right golf gear, and finding the right set up for your game.