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Why Do Some Golf Putters Have An Insert On The FaceOne of the most confusing areas of golf club technology is the inserts placed into the face of putters. Most golfers dont know what they are there for or which type of insert material is best.

There are some putters that have grooves in the face or cover the entire face of the putter with milled metal grooves. So lets break down the different options available and what they are designed to do for you.

One of the most popular inserts are the white rectangle ones, synonymous with the Odyssey range of putters. The white insert in the face of the putter is a mix of rubber materials that have a high degree of elasticity. Known as the elastomer insert, it is placed into the face of the putters to give the golfer a softer feeling when the ball comes off the putter face. This is designed to give the golfer more feel when hitting their putters. At one stage, Odyssey Golf made a series of putters with a dark insert in the face that was much harder with the idea of giving the golfer a harder feel at impact, although this technology didnt stay around for too long.

If you dont like the soft feel from the face insert then there are some manufacturers who take the face off their putters and etch what looks like small wavy lines across the entire surface. This procedure is called milling the face. This is a process that you see more and more across all manufacturers now but is something that came into the market with the Scotty Cameron range of putters. His putters are made from the highest quality 303 stainless steel and milled on a precision CNC machine, the same as a car engine block or an aircraft part. This is why they are that bit more expensive and gives the putter a softer feel.

Grooves on the putter face are a growing phenomenon. Originally designed in a rainbow style curve in the centre of the face of YES putters, they are also now across a wider range and larger area of the putter face too. These grooves are different to any others due to the fact that the manufacturers have the edge angles slightly upward so they help lift the ball ever so slightly on impact to get the ball rolling much earlier and reduce the amount of skid and help you achieve a truer roll on your putts.

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Although the cosmetic appearance of a putter will help your confidence when youre over a putt, whether or not the putter face has a different material inserted into the face does not mean that you will suddenly start putting better. If your stroke is not looked at and you dont practise you will continue to achieve the same results from your putting as you always have.

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The only way the feeling you get from your putter face would get harder would be if you were to change the type of golf ball you use. The majority of golfers now use a softer feeling golf ball which also helps you with the feelings and feedback you get from the putter face. If you were to start using a harder distance ball, the feeling you get from the putter face at impact will be a lot harder and may hinder the consistency of your distance control.

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There is a theory that manufacturers place inserts, mill the face or add grooves to a putter face to help the ball roll and not skid in the first few inches of the putt. The only measured evidence that shows earlier friction of the ball on the green is with an upwardly angled groove on the face.