A fine example of this popular alloy head putter in good condition ready for play. The club measures 34” (86cm).
The ‘terraced top’ head has very clear stamps showing the makers name and both the registration and patent numbers.
The head has been cleaned and lightly polished and remarkably there are only a few very minor scratch/dint marks compared to many of these alloy head putters which are often found badly scarred.
The terraced part of the head is stamped Standard Golf Co, Sunderland, England encircling Mills 704 patent number.
The lower level stamps show US Design Patent No.43885 and Registered No.602519.
The sole is stamped The New ‘Mills’ Ray Model, Medium Lie, 9 ozs 8 drs
There are two circular lead weights positioned at the rear of the head and the face is stamped with a square grid pattern.
The shaft is straight and the hide grip looks to be original but this cannot be guaranteed.
Standard Golf Company
At the end of the 19th century aluminium was successfully being used for ship’s parts because of its rust proof capabilities and one man who was pioneering its use was Sir William Mills whose factory was based in the north east of England in Sunderland where ship building was a major industry. Mills was a very enterprising business man and it was not long before he found other uses for this new metal, one being golf clubs so he formed the Standard Golf Company during the early 1890’s.He designed various types of clubs but is best remembered for his Brassies and especially his Putters. The putters really gained recognition in 1909 when James Braid, Tom Ball and Sandy Herd used Mills putters in the Open.
Many designs were introduced onto the market but the two most successful were the Ray-Mills launched in 1912 having been helped with the design by Open Champion Edward ‘Ted’ Ray and the New Braid-Mills in 1915 having the James Braid connection.
One particular unique fact about Mills clubs is that each club was stamped with the weight and lie on the under part of the head and a serial number was stamped on the top of the head which was recorded at the factory. This was done so if a head was damaged an exact copy could be made. Sir William Mills died in 1932 and the company was bought by investors who relocated the factory to Birmingham were production continued until the late 1930’s.
In 1912 the Open Champion Ted Ray helped design a new putter known as the Ray-Mills which eventually out sold all other models. In 1915 a new version with a slightly shorter head was introduced known as the New Braid-Mills model.
Each club was stamped with a number which was recorded so that if the club was damaged it could be precisely remade. These clubs were sold in their thousands both at home and in the USA.
Buying Hickory Clubs for Play
This club(s) has been carefully inspected and sympathetically restored to a condition suitable for playing hickory golf. However it is important to remember that the average age of a hickory club is between 80 to 100 years and even older in some cases so you are purchasing an item of golf history, i.e. a golfing antique.
The majority of hickory clubs will be fine for play when handled with care but there are a few that even after being restored can have problems. For example iron heads become loose, shafts can split and socket joints do sometimes break down under the stress of the golf swing, the impact of hitting a golf ball or another hard object such as a stone or practice mat. These are the risks that you must be prepared to accept when playing with hickory clubs and therefore we cannot be held responsible should such damage occur.
GOLF BALLS – Important Advice.
It is always advisable to use a ‘soft feel’ ball when playing hickory golf to help prevent damaging the clubs. Most modern balls have a hard outer coating that can damage the face of a wood and put unnecessary strain on the socket joint. Hard balls can also cause an iron head/hosel to become loose from the wooden shaft. Driving range balls also invariably have a hard outer coating, plus hitting off rubber practice mats can sometimes loosen iron heads. Always practice on a grass surface.
Please refer to New Mesh & Dimple Balls for Hickory Play (see main menu) to view our replica 1920’s style soft feel balls.
Keeping Your Club(s) In Good Condition:
After a round of golf, should your clubs have become wet during play please ensure that you thoroughly clean and dry the heads when arriving home. Applying a thin coat of ‘gun oil’ to the iron heads helps protect against rust forming.
It is advisable to store your hickory clubs in a cool dry place. Too much moisture or heat can affect the hickory shafts, for example the shaft can shrink within the hosel causing the head to become loose. The cooler the environment - the better.
Please refer to the Postal Prices, Payments & Returns page. Orders consisting of more than one club will significantly reduce the postal charge for the added club(s) or other items, i.e. the cost to send 6 or even 8 clubs is virtually the same as for one club so should a friend also wish to make a purchase then combine the orders and save money. Should you wish to take advantage of this saving then please contact me for a postal quote before placing your order on the website.
When the courier arrives please check the condition of the parcel before signing for the delivery. This is most important because the courier will not accept liability for damage if the parcel is signed for in good condition and then a complaint is lodged at a later date.