Golf club manufacturer Cobra Golf, headquartered in Carlsbad, California, USA, has launched the KING Supersport-35 putter, the company’s first club produced using Additive Manufacturing. The development of this first AM golf club follows the company’s earlier move into Metal Injection Moulding (MIM) for its King MIM wedges in 2019.
Developed over the past two years in collaboration with Cobra engineers and the teams at HP and Parmatech, the limited edition putter features a fully additively manufactured 316 stainless steel body with an intricate lattice structure to optimise weight distribution and deliver the highest-possible Moment of Intertia (MOI) in a blade shape.
During the final step of the manufacturing process, the surfaces of the putter were precision milled using a Computer Numeric Controlled (CNC) machine to ensure precise shaping and detail while adding the finishing touches to the cosmetic. The Supersport features a high MOI heel-toe weighted design for maximum stability, and a plumber neck hosel with a 35-degree toe hang suitable for slight arc putting strokes
Cobra Golf explains that the additively manufactured putter represents a revolutionary advancement in the way golf clubs are designed and manufactured. The company selected HP as its partner to pioneer Additive Manufacturing in golf due to the advantages that HP’s Metal Jet Binder Jetting technology, a sinter-based AM technology which shares post-processing steps and some aspects of part design and quality with MIM, presented over traditional manufacturing and other AM methods.
With its quicker processing time and greater design adaptability, the company states that its engineers were able to design, prototype, and test multiple iterations and bring the product to market much faster than with traditional manufacturing methods.
Cobra and HP began working together in early 2019 and, by early 2020, the team had created thirty-five different design iterations over the course of eight months, showcasing the design freedom and speed of product innovation available by utilising HP Metal Jet, notes Cobra Golf.
In addition to this launch, the brands are reportedly working together on a strategic, multi-year product roadmap, that leverages the design and manufacturing benefits of HP’s AM technology to deliver future golf equipment that raises performance and golfer satisfaction. Cobra plans to launch two additional products in 2021 that feature Additive Manufacturing technology.
“At Cobra Golf we strive to deliver high-performance products that help golfers of all levels play their best and enjoy the game,” commented Jose Miraflor, vice president of Marketing, Cobra Golf. “To do that, it’s critical to use the most effective manufacturing processes to design, develop, and achieve optimal results, and we’ve certainly done that with this new putter. To continue innovating and transforming the way equipment is manufactured, we worked with HP and Parmatech to take advantage of the benefits of Metal Jet technology.”
He added, “During the development of the KING Supersport-35 Putter, we saw immediate benefits from this process, including design freedom, rapid design iteration, and high-quality parts that meet our economic demands. 3D printing is accelerating design innovation, and this breakthrough putter will help usher in a new era for the sporting equipment industry at large.”
“HP’s 3D printing technology allows us to utilise a complex lattice structure to remove weight from the centre of the putter-head and push significant amounts of weight to the perimeter,” Miraflor continued. “The result is superior MOI levels and massively increased stability and forgiveness. So not only is the 3D production method more consistent but it also allows us to design products in a new and superior way.
Uday Yadati, global head of HP Metal Jet, HP Inc, stated, “The power of personalisation enabled by 3D printing delivers completely reimagined consumer products and experiences. This first of its kind putter is a shining example of the disruptive design and production capabilities of HP Metal Jet 3D printing technology. Cobra’s commitment to innovation and competitive excellence combined with the technical expertise and leadership from Parmatech has led to a breakthrough design win for golf fans around the world.”
In addition to the additively manufactured design, the KING Supersport-35 Putter, which comes in an oversized blade shape, features SIK Golf’s Patented Descending Loft technology re-engineered into an aluminium face insert. The company states that this insert design strategically saves weight from the front of the putter to be repositioned heel-toe and tunes the feel to a slightly softer feel than a traditional all-steel SIK putter face. Their signature face design utilises four descending lofts (4°, 3°, 2°, 1°) to ensure the most consistent launch conditions for every putting stroke.
Bryson DeChambeau, SIK Golf partner and Cobra ambassador, reported, “I’ve had a lot of success over the years with my SIK putter and was really excited to work with COBRA to develop a new way to manufacture equipment and bring this new putter to market.”
“HP’s Metal Jet technology is an incredibly advanced production method and very exacting, which is pretty critical in golf equipment,” he continued. “I think golfers of all levels will benefit from the combination of Cobra’s high MOI design and SIK’s Descending Loft technology.”