Drive Golf Performance Blog

Drive Golf Performance Blog

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Identifying Counterfeit Mizuno JPX 900 Forged Clubs

Recently a customer dropped in to get a set of golf club heads shafted. He bought the heads on the Internet, on first glance they looked OK but he also asked did I think they were genuine. A closer inspection it was clear they weren't genuine Mizuno JPX 900 Forged heads. But without knowing what to look for an unsuspecting customer could easily be fooled.

Let's investigate the heads closer to show why they aren't genuine, what you should look out for and why buying these heads are a total waste of money no matter what was paid for them.


Here's a photo of one of the fake heads. The other head is a genuine Mizuno head. You can see from this angle that there isn't much to distinguish the heads. I posted the photo on Instagram asking which was real and which was fake. Most thought the fake was real from this angle. Have a look yourself, which do you think is real?

The genuine head is on top with the fake below. From this angle the only sign of a fake is the paintwork is a little smudgy on the 900 compared to the top one.


From this side it's easier to distinguish the fake from the real. The fake is on the left, you can see the grooves are not as precise as the real head and the face is all the same colour on the fake.



Another sign is the serial number and the easiest one to check. Each Mizuno club has a serial number etched onto the hosel. The serial number is the date the clubs were assembled followed by a C for custom and S for stock. The fake head didn't have the serial number. Also Mizuno don't sell individual components. Mizuno clubs can't be bought head only.




Another sign was inside the hosel. Hard to see in the photos above but the genuine Mizuno heads have slight grooves inside the hosel to help when glueing the head. They are quite noticeable. The grooves on fake head were barely noticeable. Also the hosel was .370 parallel wide where Mizuno's have a .355 tapered tip hosel.

What about the signs which aren't visible to the naked eye. They would be weight, loft, lies and the metal the heads are made from.

We weighed the heads to see how much of a difference there would be between those and the genuine heads.




Iron
Weight (Fake) (g)
Weight (Genuine)
4
250.4
244
5
247
252.7
6
255.8
260
7
255.2
267
8
281.8
272.5
9
282.2
281.5
PW
281.7
286.5



As you go through a set the head weights get heavier from long iron to short iron. This is to keep the same swing weight through the set .i.e. as the shafts get shorter the heads get heavier to maintain the same balance. Most sets would have 7-8 grams between head weights.

We can see in the weights of the fake heads that they are all over the place, some lighter then the previous one, some much heavier and some the same. Note in particular the difference between the 7 iron and 8 iron, more the 26 grams! This means swing weights and balances of a built set would be inconsistent and one club would feel completely different to another.




Iron
Weight (Fake) (g)
Swingweight
4
250.4
D7
5
247
C9
6
255.8
D1
7
255.2
C7
8
281.8
D7.5
9
282.2
D4
PW
281.7
D0



Above is a table of the swingweights of the fake heads when they were assembled. Generally a set would have the same swing-weight throughout the set with D0-D2 being the favoured weight. We can see that these are wildly inconsistent. Imagine swinging the 7 and 8 iron, one would feel like a feather and the other like a sledgehammer!.

Lets look at the lofts and lies of the fake heads.




Iron
Loft (Fake)
Lie (Fake)
Loft (Genuine)
Lie (Genuine)
4
24
60
21
60
5
21.5
60
24
60.5
6
29
61.5
27
61
7
29
61.5
31
61.5
8
38
62
35
62
9
37
62.5
40
62.5
PW
46
62.5
45
63



We can see here the lofts are all over the place too. The 4 even has more loft then the 5, the 6 and the 7 are the same and the 8 has more loft then the 9! However on closer inspection and combing the lofts with the head weights we can see, the 4 iron is really a 5 iron, the 5 iron is really a 4 iron, the 6 and the 7 as well as the 8 and 9 are actually the same head.

The fakes are just a rush job with no quality control whatsoever. The person buying them ends up with a wedge that might perform like a wedge but none of the other clubs have specifications close to the genuine clubs. In other words a total waste of money.

Another thing we can't see is the metal the heads are made from. The Mizuno JPX 900 Forged are made from a boron infused steel to give a beautifully feeling club. We can't test what the fakes are made from but with the head weights being different from the genuine clubs we can safely assume they are not made from the same quality meal. Striking the ball with the fake clubs would not give the same fantastic feeling as a Mizuno club. There's a strong chance too that the fakes could break easily.

Conclusion

The fake clubs can be distinguished by the face, the grooves, the smudgy paintwork, the lack of a serial number and the sale being heads only. The lofts and head weights are inconsistent too.

Buying a set of fake heads like these will give you a dysfunctional set of golf clubs, the 4 marked as a 5, the 5 marked as a 4, the 6 and 7 are the same club, the 8 and 9 are the same club. The swingweights are wildly inconsistent, no club would feel the same way swinging. They are just a total waste of money.

If the price is too good to be true it usually is. Buy from trusted sellers who have a known policy on returns.  

Comments and questions are always welcome

2 comments:

  1. Very interesting, it seems that most fakes are easiest to spot (Once you get past them not being sold head only) by poor lettering.

    The price of a full set of Mizunos is eye watering, we will never be rid of fakes, there is just too much money to be made..

    www.golfcodeweekly.com


    ReplyDelete
  2. free of monetary concerns, and living your life on your terms. best golf carts reviews

    ReplyDelete