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You can tell i have spent the weekend playing golf, as i write my second review on the topic in a number of hours. It is a sport that can be either hugely frustrating or equally rewarding, and as much as a lot of that distinction relies on your ability (and the weather), the equipment that you use can be equally as important. This means expensive clubs and other equipment, and unfortunately, expensive golf balls. These Dunlop Loco's are not expensive, and unfortunately, for me, the quality of the product represents that, making them fantastic for the average golfer, but decidedly average for those playing above that level.
Pricewise, these are fantastic, i think a pack of 24 costs about £12, making it about 50p a ball, which is good value. If you are playing a lakes course or just starting out, this is fantastic, as when you pop one in the drink it doesn't start a blubbering noise coming from your back pocket. The other advantage of them is that they are nice and durable, and clean up easily. I actually started playing with these balls when i found one down my local course and found that they were nice and reliable and always gave you a similar level of performance, without a horrific price tag, which is always important.
The disadvantages of this, however, do go on and on a bit. The range of the ball, supposedly better because of the loco design, doesn't actually make the ball go a great distance. Whilst i believe that i hit these further than the top flites i reviewed earlier, it certainly is not a ball that can rival the range of something like a titleist or callaway ball. The other problem is putting with this ball, i am not sure if it is because of its unique design, but i cannot generate any feel for the pace at which the ball needs to be struck to go the correct distance. It almost seems to vary from hole to hole, which i know is ridiculous to suggest, but only underlines the difficulties lying behind playing with this ball.
Therefore, this ball is great for someone starting out or just playing casually, but as you start to try and improve your game and reduce your shots i really do believe that it is important to try and get the best ball out there, and it will hopefully give you the bragging rights over your mates and the course for a long time to come.
Golf is a game which is a simple transferrance of power through the arms into the ball and sending it as far as possible down the course, this enables the player to make as few shots as possible at every hole. The game itself is ridiculously easy in concept but the mechanics of the player mean that playing the game in practice is an exercise in frustration. To make the game easier for players of any level are a range of pieces of equipment which help that goal of sending the ball down the hole in as few shots as possible.
One of the few definites about the game of golf is a golf club, a ball and a golfer. At it's simplest level a player can go around a golf course using two or three iron clubs, a putter and a pocket full of golf balls. So any improvement within the game which covers these three key pieces of equipment will have the biggest impact on a players score. A golf ball is a spherical pimpled object which is coated in hard plastic and is normally white, sometimes yellow and is approximately an inch in diameter. Golf balls can cost a few pence to many pounds, they all claim to help the player and there is a level of golf snobbery in which a player will claim that he is a better player using the most expensive golf balls he can buy.
Dunlop golf balls are one of the most popular providers of golf balls, they have the distinctive Dunlop insigia and most players have a few of these golf balls lurking in their bag. They also tend to be relatively cheap and come in packs of 3, 5, 7, or 10+. Loco balls are balls which are specifically aimed at amateur players, they claim to have a softer centre which allows transferrance of power through the golf ball and mean that the player gets more for every shot in terms of distance and straightness.
Is this true?
Well I've used many types of golf balls nearly all of them claim to give you more for your shots and the dimple technology helps make sure they fly in a straight line and my opinion of them all is that they don't add anything to your game beyond maintaining their shape. So these golf balls which cost about 50p each are good value, let's be honest a golf ball has a relatively short life they get lost so easily so spending loads of money on a golf ball is like burning money. At this amount they make these golf balls worth playing with because you don't really care if they get lost and if sent in a straight line seem to give decent distance to any shot.
These are relatively cheap have a decent shelf life if played with constantly and will go through a whole 18 hole course if your good enough to keep the same ball in play. Do they make you play better probably not but if you tell that they will often enough then they probably do.
I have been playing golf for many years now. Although I don't get out on the course as often as I would like, I do still manage a good few rounds every summer. While I certainly don't class myself as a 'good' golfer, I can usually hold my own and card a reasonable score. A large part of golf though is the equipment you use. It's amazing the difference a good driver can make. The same is often said of golf balls. The pros use very expensive golf balls that are taylor made to their game, whereas I just tend to buy a cheap set and whack em!
I recently started using these balls, the Dunlop Loco golf balls. The main reason being that they were not to expensive. You can buy a pack of 24 of these for around £12 which works out at 50p a ball, quite a bargain really. That means if you lose a fair few on a round it does not end up costing you that much.
So how have I found these balls. Well to be perfectly honest I have not been overly impressed. There is nothing really wrong with them, but for some reason they don't seem to perform quite as well as other balls I've used in the past. One thing about my game is that I struggle to hit really long shot, I have a good short game and am quite accurate, due to this fact I rarely seem to lose golf balls. In fact in the last five rounds I have played I have not lost one ball! That means I get to see how durable these are and I have come to the conclusion that they are not very durable. After just one round the balls show signs of wear and I like to use a new one, not great.
Apparently the balls have a soft core which gives them extra distance. But again I have never really seen evidence of that, my drives are no longer and no straighter. I would not say I'm a good enough golfer to go into all the technical details about how these balls perform, but for me they just don't feel quite right. I have used some top quality balls every now and again and I can tell they are much better quality.
The Dunlop Logo balls would be ideal for someone starting out in golf. I would describe these as cheap and cheerful, if you lose a lot of balls when you are playing then they are ideal. However, if you are like me and tend to play with the same ball for round after round, these really are not up to that much, I tend to use them for chipping in the garden, they rarely get a go on the actual course anymore.
For some people, golf is about as exciting as attending a cement conference in Huddersfield on a rainy day. For others, it's a passion, and a chance to escape busy working life for a couple of hours. For me, golf is merely a pastime, and whilst I do enjoy a round once a week, I'm not a die-hard fan, and can survive without hitting a little white ball with a big metal stick for a while.
I was going to try and keep this review entertaining for the non-golfers, but that's not really going to be possible, as, at the end of the day, even a numerous amount of ball-based jokes isn't going to produce a scintillating write-up! - so let us proceed in a civilized manner...
Amongst other things, a golfer should take good care of his balls, and choose them wisely - different balls have different properties... some will go further than others, some will have more spin, and it really is a case of finding the perfect blend of both.
For me, value for money is another important issue when choosing a golf ball, as there's no point me spending £7 on each one if I'm going to be losing five of them per round (not that I'm normally that bad!).
Whilst in the sports shop a couple of weeks back, I saw a pack of 'Dunlop LoCo' balls which cost around £5 for twelve. I have used LoCo's In the past, and was pretty happy with them - for the price, I thought it would be worth the investment.
In terms of the make, Dunlop have made some pretty dodgy golf balls in the past, with special attention paid to the 'DDH', which was a particularly nasty and rock hard little bugger. The LoCo however, is an altogether more refined specimen. 'LoCo' is an amalgamation of 'Low Compression' - which suggests impressive distance from the tee - but is that the case?
I was fairly impressed with the distance I achieved with these balls, and I would say that they were on a par with the higher-spec Titleist NXT's which I occasionally use. In terms of the spin-rate, these balls are fairly average - sure, they are better than the cheapest balls on the market, but they won't really 'check' or spin on the greens when chipping, which is what I'm ultimately looking for.
In conclusion, for the price, Dunlop LoCo's are really good golf balls, although that said, they would probably suit the high-handicap golfers more than their low scoring counterparts. Nevertheless, I would recommend LoCo's as the best budget ball available.