Bryan’s Bass Resto

Bryan has a cool resto project as well…

I enjoyed reading about the Callaway Hickory Stick resto and how it was tucked away waiting for restoration. It is good to know that there are older putters out there worth saving from the scrap metal smelter. I have several putters, although not in pristine condition, I picked up for next to nothing. With the idea, that someday I would restore them to their former glory, or customize them into a one of a kind putt maker. After reading about the hickory stick. I was inspired to dig around the dungeon and pull out one of the restores I was saving away.

As the story goes, I was heading on a trip up north and I decided to take a detour to a legendary golf shop. As I drove up, in front of the store outdoors, were several large bins with clubs marked at clearance prices. All I could think was the toll the humidity was taking on these misfit clubs. Then I spotted it. A made in the USA, Sportsman Series, American Classic by Tom Bass, Bear model. Oxidation was already eating away at the original black oxide finish, but I could see the beauty underneath and could see the potential it had.  A restoration job could bring life back to this beauty. Plus, this putter met my collecting criteria of having, an unusual, unknown maker, good design, original shaft band and original grip. With a price tag of less than $5, I could not go wrong, even if the restoration was well into the future. The styling of this putter reminded me of a Tad Moore or T.P. Mills, what set it apart was the large circle sight line. The milling lines are still visible on the face although, I can not confirm that this putter is entirely milled. On the heel of the face is a stamp of the outline of a bear, with bears in script underneath. The shaft band also has an illustration of a bear. I researched Tom Bass, but wasn’t able to come up with much. So if anybody knows anything more, feel free to comment.

On several spots on the back flange, face and sole, the oxidation has eaten through the original black oxide finish. I could live with the “character” but I think restoration is probably the way to go. It makes a good story because I can claim, “I bagged my bear and caught my bass on my trip up north.”