Not too long ago I was invited to a round of golf, and although I've never played before and stopped counting at 40 over par, I had a blast. I decided to get into it a bit more, and after spending some time at the driving range I thought I would invest in a set of second hand clubs to get me started.
Only a week ago I came across an advertisement for a full set of clubs, a golf bag, and a golf cart for the price of $25 - the only problem was that they'd been in storage for years! Most of the clubs had surface rust to some degree, and the bag was covered in dust and cobwebs, for it seemed like a steal for $25 and I thought it was worth a punt to try and clean them up.
The general advice online seemed to be that I should just buy new shafts, a bit of a joke given that would cost more than what I paid for the entire set, and instead I decided to tackle the problem on my own, as you'll see in the following steps.
Please note that although this turned out really well for me and my $25 set of clubs, if you decide to try anything similar just be careful especially if they're an expensive set of clubs!
Thanks for reading!
Step 1: Things You'll Need
1. Fine Steel Wool
2. Hard bristle toothbrush
3. Wet and Dry sandpaper (as fine as you can get it)
4. White Vinegar
5. Metal Polish
6. A bucket
7. A Dremel or similar rotary tool with a polishing bit (not necessary, rags will do)
8. Plenty of elbow grease!
Step 2: Vinegar, Steel Wool & Sandpaper
To get started I put enough white vinegar in my bucket to just cover the head of the club and splashed it up over the rest of the shaft using my hand, I probably could have used a cloth but this worked fine! It was a bit messy though, so I definitely suggest doing this outside (particularly if your significant other is opposed to the house smelling like vinegar!).
I wet the steel wool in the vinegar and began rubbing the shaft, I was really concerned about damaging the chrome finish in the beginning but ultimately some pressure was involved in rubbing the rust off, it worked really well though and I frequently dipped the wool in the vinegar to keep it damp.
In the places where the rust was particularly deep I resorted to the sandpaper, most often this was around the head of the club but it cleaned up really well with a bit of elbow grease and didn't effect the finish at all.
Step 3: Cleaning the Face of the Club
It looked as though these clubs had been put away dirty, and I definitely wanted to make sure that I got into all the groves on the face of the club. This is where the toothbrush comes in handy, just dip it in the vinegar and brush away!
Step 4: Before & After
It took around an hour of scrubbing the entire set to get to this point, and personally I think they look great.
Step 5: Don't Forget the Handle!
While I was at it I thought I'd give the handle a good scrub too and for this I swapped out the vinegar for a mixture of warm water with a bit of dish washing liquid, a bit of a scrub with the toothbrush and they were as good as new!
Step 6: Rinse & Dry
At this point all of the clubs had been scrubbed with vinegar and soapy water, I wanted to ensure that there was no residue of either hanging about, so I gave them all a good hose and hand dried each club thoroughly.
I wanted to make sure they were absolutely dry before moving onto the next step, so I left them sitting in the sun for an hour or so before moving onto the polishing stage.
Step 7: Polish & Buff
Having a tool like a Dremel will make this step a lot easier, but it's not really necessary - I hand polished each of the shafts using an all purpose metal polish and a ran, and used the Dremel with a buffer bit on the heads of each club.\
After all this, these clubs turned out really nice and I'm looking forward to cleaning up the buggy next and then heading out to the club for a field test!