For many golfers, the essential parts of the golf club are the grip, shaft, and clubhead, and they very seldom pay attention to the small plastic sleeve called the ferrule that is found at the bottom of the golf club shaft.
The ferrule on a golf club is a small, tubular, or funnel-shaped piece of plastic that fits at the base of the club shaft and connects the shaft to the head of the golf club. While you may think that this is for aesthetic purposes, the ferrule is vital for your golf club.
You can get ferrules that have different designs, colors, and patterns, but the fundamental role of this little bit of plastic doesn’t change, and without it, the ability to strike the ball consistently would be compromised.
Now, let’s find out more about the ferrule and why you should (and do) have them.
What Are Golf Club Ferrules and What Do They Do?
There is some debate as to whether the ferrule is purely cosmetic and simply creates a smooth transition between the golf club shaft and the clubhead or whether it plays a more central role in club performance and shaft stability during the swing.
There is no doubt that ferrules make the connection between the shaft and clubhead look smoother, as, without them, the rougher edges of the shaft/clubhead infusion would be visible and unsightly.
But there is a case that demonstrates that the ferrule supports enhancing the strength and stability of the connection between the shaft and clubhead, especially with modern clubs and drivers.
The ferrule reinforces a secure and sturdy connection between the club’s shaft and the clubhead. With the extra support, the club can handle more force during the swing without twisting as the ferrule keeps the post and clubhead securely connected.
Most golf clubs, except the putter, have a ferrule and can be made from any lightweight materials – but most are either plastic or aluminum.
Remember that the ferrule does not connect the shaft and clubhead but adds an extra dimension of support and cushioning.
Golf club shafts are tapered to fit into the clubhead and secured using epoxy.
The ferrule is an added piece usually glued tightly and lends support to the point of contact between shaft and clubhead.
What Happens If The Ferrule Comes Loose?
A loose ferrule is usually a result of the glue on the ferrule failing, and in most cases, this will not affect the club’s performance during the swing. However, it may rattle around on the shaft, which can become an irritation.
If the ferrule on your club does come loose, you need to check whether it’s just the ferrule or whether the clubhead has come loose as well.
In some cases, the clubhead itself may be loose.
To check this, hold the clubhead in your hand and try and twist it; if the clubhead is still locked solidly into the shaft, then it’s just the ferrule, and you can fix that by regluing it or taking it to the pro-shop where they will usually repair it or replace it at no cost.
If the clubhead itself is loose, then you need to get that sorted out as it may fly off during a swing, and you could lose the clubhead entirely, or it could injure someone by accident.
In this case, the loose ferrule has done you an outstanding service.
This is another reason you need ferrules, as they can indicate that your clubhead requires some attention.
What About Cracked Ferrules?
Loose ferrules are not uncommon and are easy to repair, but if the ferrule is cracked, you would need to see if ferrules on any of your other clubs are cracked and if so, it will indicate that you should replace them all.
Because ferrules are usually plastic, cracked ferrules indicate wear and tear, and you should ask your club tech to check the heads of all the clubs to make sure none of them have come loose either.
What Is A Collared Ferrule?
This type of ferrule is typically found on clubs with graphite shafts, and they, like the standard ferrules, are designed to provide a greater level of support to the shaft during the swing.
Collared ferrules provide an epoxy cushion for the graphite.
This helps improve the stability and reduce impact forces and stresses, which could result in the failure of the graphite shaft.
If you have graphite shafted clubs – you should have collared ferrules.
Specialized Ferrules For Adjustable Drivers
Many modern drivers are adjustable for loft and life, and as such, they need a different kind of ferrule.
This one has a more prominent role in connecting the club head and shaft than ferrules found on irons, as with the adjustable, the shaft requires more significant support, and the ferrule does just that.
These ferrules are much larger and assist with both the club setup and support of the shaft, and if you look down closely at your adjustable driver, you will see the ferrule and the integral role it plays between the shaft and clubhead.
Customized Ferrules Can Enhance The Look Of Your Clubs
As a purely aesthetic function, ferrules are available in various colors and designs.
You can choose a set that will add some customization to your clubs, whether it’s a different color to the standard black or a fancier one with gold inlays to add some bling!
While these will not enhance the club’s performance, they add some style and panache to your clubs and distinguish them as yours from the traditional look and feel.
Do All Golf Clubs Have Ferrules?
Modern irons and woods will have ferrules, while some older sets of irons or those with wooden shafts may not, and if they don’t, then don’t worry too much about adding them.
Because ferrules are added as part of the club manufacturing process and play an essential role in supporting and securing the clubhead to the shaft, all irons and woods will leave the factory with a ferrule.
You certainly should have ferrules, as even though they may appear to have aesthetic value only, they play a defining role in ball striking and support under the force of the golf swing.
The use of ferrules as an integral and critical component in supporting and securing the clubhead to the shaft should not be underrated, as, without them, we would see a lot more clubheads launched down the fairway!
With so many types and styles of ferrules available, you can now customize your clubs’ look while still swinging them with confidence and power, knowing that your club head and shaft are secure if the ferrule is tight.