January 18, 2003
CLUB CLONES vs BRANDS
In the SUV market we have the Ford
Explorer, Jeep Cherokee, Toyota 4Runner, GMC Envoy,
Cadillac Escalade, Lincoln Aviator, Buick Rainier, Lexus
GX, and on and on. Each of these companies takes from
each other and "clones" or "knocks-off"
each others' design concepts. They all do this legally,
ethically and with great vigor. It is a game of leap
While we sometimes find it hard to distinguish one
SUV from another, we know they are not exact copies
of each other and that these companies are not trying
to confuse the consumer into thinking so. But we also
know the SUV makers copy the same features, performance
characteristics, and customer benefits from each other
in a marketplace of continuing innovation. Well, so
do we, but we do it in golf.
The most popular name brand companies in golf today
are Callaway, Ping, Titliest, TaylorMade and Cobra,
with several others typically coming in and out of favor.
These companies (and us) are just like the auto makers
— leap frogging each other with innovative new
product concepts, materials and fashion statements.
When talking generically about golf clubs, most consumers
describe products in terms of general product families,
just like when auto consumers say that Honda looks has
a "Mercedes look", or that Mercedes "looks
like a Land Rover". Well, it is the same thing
A Golf Clone is similar to the concept of a PC Clone
(at least that is how we think of it). In the mid-1980's
PC Clones were introduced into the personal computer
market. Some of them, like Compaq, eventually became
Brand Names. But the goal of Clones, in golf, computers
and cars is to provide all of the performance features
of a big name brand with a better value to the consumer.
Clones are not to be confused with the branded products
they may seek to flatter, but they are made from essentially
the same materials and design principles, use many of
the same shaft and grip suppliers, and perform similar
to (or often better than) the name brands.
The important point is we buy our heads, shafts, and
grips from the same small community of golf manufacturing
suppliers. We provide performance but offer you a BETTER
VALUE. To prove it, see what our other customers say
ARE SOME GOLF CLONES ILLEGAL?
Illegal knockoffs and counterfeits have been a significant
problem in the golf industry. The Name Brands talk about
illegal clubs ripping them off, but counterfeiters also
rip us off and you too, the consumer. No one should
buy products from an illegal counterfeiter. An illegal
knockoff and/or counterfeit is a product that violates
the legal trade dress rights, trademarks, patents or
copyrights of another company. Historical examples of
trade dress violators were the makers of the "king
snake" which was an illegal knockoff of Cobra's
King Cobra, the Tommy Mann Bummer, the Big Burser —
you see the point.
An illegal knockoff rips off the violated company because
it confuses the consumer and in some cases seeks to
fool the consumer into thinking their product is actually
the Name Brand Company's product. It rips us off because
we play by the rules and lose business to shady operators
who fool consumers into thinking they are buying a legitimate
product. It rips you off if you buy their products because
you have then violated the law and are holding illegal
goods. That could very well negatively affect your game
— and, we at Pinemeadow Golf do not want that
Pinemeadowgolf.com is very careful to not violate the
valid rights of other companies. However, we do examine
carefully the claims of companies and work hard to get
into your hands the best products at the best price.
Article courtesy of PineMeadowGolf