Friday, April 27, 2012

Zen and the Art of Green Shaping & Finishing

Don Mahaffey has been working and consulting with a municipal course for 3 years. Starting this month they contracted Don rebuild 9 of their greens. We did some planning and came up with a number of good concepts that fit the site and will be more enjoyable for their players. 
For me, a most fun part is the fine shaping and finishing of the greens. It is a slow process, a lot like polishing a stone with lots of small circles.  The tool is a "mechanical bunker rake".  It  has a little blade in front to push around shovels of material and a rake in the back to smooth.
Above is a picture of the before and during. The green was tiny, too sloped for a hole and flat on top. When finished the 5th green will be more receptive to the average players shot and be far more interesting for putts and chips. We are using the materials on site and bringing in a little sand to perform the final finish in a week or so.
Another highlight is that Intern Rob has been working with Don for a couple years since helping to build the TPC San Antonio courses.  Last summer he and I had a nice project near Memphis.  Great music and even better ribs. 
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