Review: Williams FW-32.4 Putter
All you have to do is watch the tour pros to know that putting is the most important aspect of low scores. Even the amateur knows that the days they putt well are the days they score well. With that said there is no one-way to get the ball in the hole. It is really an art form that varies from one golfer to the next. There are so many different putting styles and so many different putters it is all about finding one that is right for you. It also helps if the putter you use is exactly uniform every time you putt with it. A great putter needs to have excellent balance, consistent feel and precise milling. I would call the Williams FW-32.4 a great putter.
I reviewed a Williams FW-32 driver last year and was really impressed by the tight tolerances and the incredible aerodynamics of this driver. Being from an F1 racing heritage you would expect some of those features, but what do putters and racecars have in common? Aerodynamics are not so important on a club that moves at 2mph. What they both need is precision. A putter needs to be milled to the highest tolerances so that each stroke will produce the same results. I had a putter by a well-known putter designer (he who will not be named) that had an imperfection in the face milling. It was not perfectly flat. It was off by just a little bit. I had a machine shop smooth it out and my putting got better. It was off by just a tiny amount, but putting is a game of millimeters.
The Williams putters are milled at the same shop that they mill some of their car parts. The precision needed for a racecar is far more important than a putter, but it is nice to know (and see) how perfect the mill marks and the angles are made.
Out side of the precision, the beauty of this putter is second to none. Williams has two finish options, 24K golf or Black PVD finish. The gold was a bit much for me, but the black PVD finish is spectacular. The shine of the black is just right, not too bright to blind, but not too dull to bore.
I chose the FW32.4 design for a little more of a classic feel and something that you will not find at your local store. I found one similar putter out of the 100s at the local golf store. That putter was a high-end putter too, but even that one just didn’t look as nice as the Williams FW-32.4. The flow neck just blends right into the head seamlessly for a really nice look at address.
The accessories are top shelf. The Union Jack headcover is what you would expect with such a classy putter. The putter is topped with a black stitchback grip. It also is delivered in an awesome display box, so that if you choose to just admire the putter as a collector’s piece, you easily could do this since they are only made in limited editions. (The only flaw I saw was a typo on the label inside the display box.)
But I’m not one to just look at putters; I like to use them. I’ll be honest I wasn’t 100% confident before I went to putt with it because I’m not always the best with sight dots. But what I found with this putter is the sight dot works to line the ball up with the center of the face, but then using the back flange to square up to my target worked amazingly well. I was sinking putts left and right. I really had great success with alignment.
The other aspect of putting is distance control. I was really comfortable with this too. The head weight felt prefect at 350 grams because the thick face has a low back flange. This combination gave it a solid crisp feel. The face is milled with a metal insert that just dampens the vibration a little. Thus the feel and distance control are excellent. This putter will definitely makes its way into the 2011 rotation.
Again Williams impressed me with their precise milling, attention to detail and beauty of their product. While this product is not for the light of wallet, you get what you pay for; a limited edition precision tool for the art and science of putting.
For more information: www.williams-sports.com