It's back? Really? The Chipper!

Did you see this golf club review?

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Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
It's back? Really? The Chipper!

The Chipper is Back: Odyssey Brings Out Counterbalanced Model

Short-game stroke saver for around the greens

The fact is, most of us are not short-game wizards. You might not be Mr. or Mrs. Havercamp, but there still might be reason to consider adding a chipper to your bag if you experience any grief around the greens.

The chipper category (it's a club with putter looks and grip but with the loft of an 8-iron) has been dormant in recent years, but it's had several revivals in the last two decades. This is the first from a major company since Odyssey's last introduction about five years ago.

Odyssey's new entry into this category is the X-Act Tank chipper—a club the company touts as being designed to function like an “approach putter.” The idea behind the counterbalanced club is to smooth out the chipping stroke in an effort to promote more consistent contact.

The head weighs a hefty 355 grams and combined with the SuperStroke chipper grip, provides the counterbalanced feel. The X-Act sole helps prevent the chunked shot, and the Marxman alignment system assists aim. The polymer insert is akin to what you would expect from a putter.

The club ($130) comes in lofts of 37 and 46 degrees. So, will your playing partners chuckle when you pull a chipper out of your bag? For those with little or no faith in their ability to not stub or blade the ball on chip shots, a chipper is a viable alternative that could leave you the one laughing when the ball stops near the hole.

Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
I had one of these back in

I had one of these back in the day when I first started playing golf.  Interesting to see them back again by a major manufacturer. 

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Aimee's picture

if you need a chipper, you probably have a hybrid in your the money and use a 4-5 hybrid!

It's not's how many

I've got one

I got one of those chipper clubs a few years back for a club test and review. I did NOT ask for it, the company just sent it to me to try. I didn't have much luck with it when I tried it around the greens. I worked with the chipper for about an hour and  never got to where I was good with it. I was MUCH better using my 8 iron than this chipper. I let my playing partner try it and he didn't like it either, so now i'ts just sitting somewhere not being used. For me I had a hard time getting the carry distance right to land the ball on the green.I was either coming up way short or well past the target area with the chipper. With the WIDE sole of the chipper you can NOT add loft to the club so that's not an option. And if you try to de-loft it by leaning the butt end of the shaft toward the target, the sole design does not work as designed so you might as well use a standard iron from your bag. NO sense adding this club when it would mean PULLING one other club from your bag. To be honest, I was rather surprised to see an add for the new Odyssey chipper. I'll be even more surpriase if it's a  big seller for the company. My quess is is will not be on the market for long before it dies out.


Putting is easy if you have the Right Putter.

Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
Yeah, I don't disagree.  this

Yeah, I don't disagree.  this is a niche club for sure.    I think the advantage to this over the hybrid is I imagine the grooves are like a wedge, so you can get more spin on the ball than from a hybrid.  Which is ironic given we're talking high handicapper users and spinning wedges and controling stop is NOT what that group typically does well.   


Several new wedge designs are out these days trying to help the high handicapper stop skulling/chunking chips and cut down strokes.  This will probably sell like those, niche options, but not really be a huge success I don't imagine. 

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scomac's picture
My wife has one, a Cleveland

My wife has one, a Cleveland Smart Sole "C" wedge.  It's the current version of their infamous Niblick that they introduced a few years ago.

The club has the same length, lie and weight characteristics of a putter, but with the loft of a short iron and a hybrid like sole.  For those familiar with women's clubs, you will know that is a big difference versus the traditional short iron.

For a person who lacked any sort of repeatable ability around the green, this club has been a godsend.  She uses it for any shot inside 50 yards that isn't in a bunker.  It works and she likes it a lot!  It has saved her a lot of strokes once she got used to it and the proper technique to use it effectively.

Does she get a better result than I can get with a traditional club?  Not really, but she is on the green now consistently where that used to be a crap shoot.  I've been so impressed with what it did for her game that I've thought about getting one myself.

Will it be popular?  Probably not, but I do think that it is the kind of club that can help the right player moreso than a lot of the other hollow promises that are being marketed.  They keep showing up every few years, so you know that the concept has merit.