Chief by Gateway -- First Impressions
by Jason Hilton
Well, since the weather was nice Sunday, a few of us decided to go out to Ewing for a round. While I was out there I was able to get my beginning impressions of the new Chief Putter. I mainly wanted to test out it's durability as well as it's feel during putting and upshots. So I took my 175g proto and hit the course!
On comparison with my Wizards I really couldn't find much of a difference Mold wise between the two. They both have a small bead along the bottom edge and feel about the same in the hand. The new plastic of the chief has more of a old JK plastic (not the new clear stuff) and a reasonably tacky feel. Now I don't know if it was the plastic or a trait of the disc, but the center plate had more give in it than I expected, and didn't feel as thick as the plate on the wizard. Again that could have been the differences in the plastics properties, or it could be that the Chief has more weight on the rim than the Wizard, thus making the plate thinner. Tim would have to answer that one for us.
After a few practice putts it was off for the round. I decided that the true test of durability would definately happen on the bane of any discs existence, #2. Since 90f the time I nail at least 1 tree on that hole, I was almost assured a good tree smack to see how it would hold up. Alas, drive off the tee, no trees. How rude! I was pleasantly surprised though, the disc held a consistant line, in my opinion, an even better line than the Wizard normally held for me. Now, I don't know if it was because I throw slightly Jerky boy (roll my wrist over slightly, giving disc a slight anhyzer angle) or what, but the Chief was no where near as overstable as I was told it would be. I was expecting it to be overstable, compared to the Wizard, but I really didn't notice much of a difference if any.
I didn't putt with it that much outside of practice, and everyone knows how great of a putter I am, so take these opinions at face value. The Chief is very nice putter. It holds it's line well, and grips the chains nicely. I didn't have a single putt slice through. Again though, like I said, putting is not my strong point.
Even though I didn't give it the huge, destructive, tree smacking I had hoped I would have I would have to say it appears that the new plastic does hold up nicely. I will hopefully have a better opinion come January after I take it to vegas and beat the daylights out of it there. I can definately say that it appears that this plastic should hold up better cosmetically compared to the older plastic. I guess I will have to abuse my proto (something I really don't want to do, it's such a nice disc) to see how it holds up flight wise though.