Now you have The Facts in Part 1 and The Traps in Part 2. In this post I will cover how to protect yourself when you make that online club purchase.
What you should do to protect yourself from these counterfeiters. Make your purchases from someone with an extremely high feedback store (1000 or higher) and preferably from a seller with their own eBay golf store. Many legit sellers offer money back guarantees if the club is returned within a week or two. This allows you the chance to have a golf professional or shop owner take a closer look at the club for authenticity. Make sure the seller provides close up pictures of the club at various angles (face, crown, head), and provides a detailed description of the condition of the club, shaft type, grip type, etc. Finally don’t be afraid to ask the seller any questions you might have. If anything about the item makes you feel suspicious just pass. The great thing about eBay is that there are usually plenty of people selling the same club. Most importantly, have some form of buyer protection like PayPal or another pay service in the case you get a counterfeit item. Don’t pay with a check or money order. Moreover, paying for anything with cash or check these days is sheer stupidity. Now, what should you do if you feel like you’ve been scammed? Follow these steps to try and get your money back and maybe discourage the scoundrel from doing it again:
- If you have received fake clubs file negative feedback before the listing is removed by eBay
- If you have used PayPal as your payment service, file a complaint at PayPal as a Fake Tangible Item
- If you’re waiting for your clubs, still file your Complaint & Claim as the sellers of fake clubs will ship the clubs after the allowed amount of time by PayPal to file has expired
- After you file a complaint – Click on the complaint transaction at PayPal and escalate it to a “claim”. This will freeze the seller account until PayPal or eBay can sort out the facts
- Check the sellers’ feedback rating. Read the feedbacks. If they have even one negative for selling a fake,…move on
- Ask them for serial numbers that you can verify. If they are not willing to provide one,…move on
- Never, ever buy clubs that are coming from China. (Or anything else, for that matter.) It’s just not worth the inherent risks involved.
The happy ending. I recently purchased the Callaway Fusion Big Bertha Irons 4-PW for $497 with shipping! This set goes for $1,199.00 in stores and averages $750 used. I bought them from a Powerseller Global Golf Exchange who has an 99 rating and has over 24,000 transactions. I am happy to report that the clubs checked out authentic . . . right down to the magnet test! Not familiar with the magnet test? Read on. . . Here are a couple of things that you can do to test the Big Bertha Fusions for authenticity:
- The serial number (located on the 8 iron) has 10 digits. Fakes frequently have nine or 11 digits.
- Check the serial number with Callaway (you can call or check through their website).
- The real fusions have a visible seam near the perimeter of the club face where the titanium face is plasma welded to the body — the fakes do not.
- The real fusions do not have numbering on the club face. Some fakes do.
- Compare the numbering font on the sole of the club sole to a club in your local golf store. No match = fake.
- The shaft logos on fake often read “RCH System 75″ instead of “RCH System 75i”.
- The shaft logo should be charcoal grey in color — not green or olive or red, etc.
- Magnets will stick to clubface of the fake clubs because of they are steel or other lesser grade materials. The real Callaway Fusions are made of tungsten/titanium and magnets will not stick to the clubface.
Well. I hope that you’ve learned something. This series took quite a bit of research and writing but I hope that it will help someone avoid a rip off. If this helps leave feedback or shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.