Fully Equipped mailbag: The 1 spot you should never place lead tape on the putter
Welcome to another edition of the Fully Equipped mailbag sponsored by Cleveland/Srixon Golf, an interactive GOLF.com series in which our resident dimplehead (a.k.a., GOLF’s managing editor of equipment, Jonathan Wall) fields your hard-hitting gear questions.
Can I add lead tape to the heel of the putter face to cover up a logo, or would that make it non-conforming?
A logo you want to conceal, huh? You’ve piqued my interest. I’m going to assume it’s a logo that would’ve gotten you sent to bed without dinner as a kid. Maybe it’s a game-changing design that hasn’t been approved by the USGA, but I doubt it.
I’d love to tell you the logo could be covered up by simply slapping a strip of lead tape on the heel, but it goes against the Rules of Golf. According to Rule 14-3, “lead tape may be applied to the head or shaft of the club for the purpose of adding weight (see Decisions 4-1/4 and 4-2/0.5),” but that doesn’t extend to the striking area of the face.
If you love the putter but absolutely cannot live with the logo, I’d recommend taking it to a shop that specializes in club restorations. Most have the ability to remove dents, dings and even stamping from the face. Just be aware that removing enough material to make a logo go away is going to affect the overall weight of the build. If this is the route you want to go, take note of your putter weight pre-removal. You could always attempt to add some of the weight back via, you guessed it, lead tape.
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Some other suggestions? If the logo stands out due to the paint fill color, it might not be a bad idea to pick up a bottle of acetone and some toothpicks. Dab some acetone on the logo with a cotton swab and then go to town on the paint with the toothpick. It can be a tedious process, but it sure beats finding another putter. It’s a simple way to make the logo blend in with the face.
If shelling out for a “putter spa treatment” or using some elbow grease to hide the logo don’t sound like your cup of tea, the other option is to just move the putter and hope someone else doesn’t mind it. Or you could defy the Rules of Golf and just add some lead tape to the face anyway.
I don’t condone breaking the rules, but if you rarely if ever play in local competitions, there’s a good chance no one is going to care or mind. Plus, if you’re missing it that far out of the middle on a routine 10-footer, you have far bigger problems.
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