Bryson DeChambeau Lobs New Brand Avonda into the Green with 3D Printed Golf Clubs

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Scottie Scheffler won the Masters, but Bryson DeChambeau also made an impressive showing, demonstrating remarkable skills that led him to a tied-for-sixth-place finish. Known as “the Scientist” for his exhaustive analysis, DeChambeau utilizes the knowledge he gathers to customize his clubs—and almost anything else—to meet his specific needs. Recently, he has incorporated 3D printing into his quest for enhanced performance.

“I designed them with someone from back home, and they have just got a different curvature on the face than other equipment. Most equipment is flat. These have a different curvature on the face that allows me to have my mis-hits to go a little straighter sometimes. Early Tuesday is when I finally got the full set approved and conforming. And I started practicing from then on out and felt comfortable with them Tuesday and Wednesday, and had no issue.I had been practicing with them quite a while before that. Last week I found out that we didn’t really think it was going to be non-conforming, but they were, just the groove edge was just too sharp. Last week, we found out literally Thursday afternoon that they were non-conforming from the USGA. Then we worked on them all over the weekend, and finally Tuesday morning we got them to where they were in a place where they were conforming and was ready to go,” DeChambeau said.

Rather than receiving these clubs from a sponsor or golf firm, it appears that Bryson DeChambeau’s clubs are his own invention, possibly in collaboration with Avoda Golf, a new brand. Currently, DeChambeau is being a bit cagey about the details, likely due to his recent departure from a major club sponsor. A partnership with the relatively small Avoda could be very disruptive, bringing 3D printing to the forefront in golf. It’s also possible that Bryson is an investor in Avoda. His endorsement could significantly boost the brand’s profile and further facilitate 3D printing’s penetration into the golf market.
DeChambeau has introduced new irons and woods that feature an innovative design: the irons are curved to mimic the curvature of woods, a novel concept for irons. These irons have a noticeable bulge, which he claims enhances the speed of the balls and allows them to fly straighter for longer, even when he hits them suboptimally. DeChambeau’s performance at the Masters was highly praised, and the introduction of this new brand, along with the incorporation of 3D printing technology, is likely to spark considerable discussion in the golf community.

Avoda, led by Tom Bailey, has been in business for about 18 months. Tom’s initial goal was to customize the lengths of clubs, a vision that gained momentum when he came into contact with DeChambeau. This collaboration significantly energized the firm and partly led to its adoption of 3D printing. The technology was chosen to cater to the specific needs of “the Mad Scientist” and to expedite the production of his customized clubs. Bailey has mentioned that the firm encountered challenges with machining the grooves to the right tolerance and polishing these grooves properly, indicating some of the technical hurdles in adapting 3D printing to golf club manufacturing.

Numerous articles have recently highlighted the last-minute arrival of Bryson DeChambeau’s clubs at the tournament, a situation that added drama and intrigue. This scenario, coupled with the innovation of the clubs and Bryson’s prominence, has provided a fantastic launch platform for the fledgling golf company Avoda. Bryson himself joined LIV Golf for a substantial sum of $125 million, a move that, while lucrative, made him less visible due to the reduced viewership associated with LIV events. His departure from the PGA Tour likely cost him some relationships, and the contentious nature of the breakaway tour, which may yet merge with the PGA, adds to the complexity of his situation.

Currently, Bryson remains in the spotlight primarily because he is one of only 13 LIV players selected to play in the Masters. The Masters, held at the prestigious Augusta National Golf Club, is powerful enough to withstand pressures from both the LIV and PGA tours. However, if the LIV merger is further delayed or cancelled, Bryson could find himself once again obscured behind the so-called “Iron Curtain” of LIV games, which attract significantly fewer viewers. While the $125 million deal was financially beneficial, the lack of a club sponsor and reduced visibility could have long-term financial impacts. Bryson has already invested all of this money, and despite potentially maintaining a sponsorship with Ping for putters, he lost his deal with Cobra in 2022 and other sponsors like Bridgestone due to his move to LIV.

Without a major club sponsor the move to Avoda totally makes sense. A friend of a friend has a cool startup and is willing to make any club related wish become a reality. Wouldn´t you invest a few million and your good name to really make a difference? And if that name is the Mad Scientist and you’re known for optimizing the heck out of everything we have—marketing gold, folks. This also would explain the rush to get the clubs approved for play. I´m almost certain that Bryson invested in Avoda and think that if he did that this is a great decision on his part. If Avoda grows off of the back of its Masters mentions, then it could really change golf.

So far almost every golf company has flirted with 3D printing. Cobra is currently offering clubs, we tested and liked 3D printed putters, and a few years ago we listed all of the developments going on. Apart from HP & Cobras efforts to binder jet clubs however most of the other initiatives have fizzled out. If Avoda disrupts existing golf brands however and does bring in shifts in the market a casual fling with 3D Printing could turn into more. So far all the golf equipment makers, except I´m guessing the craft and machining loving Miura, have looked at 3D printing and not found it needed to make the requisite investments. Sure it could improve your game, give you a better sweet spot and be more comfortable but then we´d have to change our way of doing things and invest in new processes and machining the thinking seems to be. A 3D printing focused startup could really force these firms to fundamentally change and invest in 3D printing. Then maybe finally we could win at golf, and Bryson would not have to win anymore to keep on winning.

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