It may seem strange that there is even a debate of a Kirkland Putter vs Scotty Cameron. Oddly enough, one of the biggest disruptors in the golf equipment world in the past few years has been … Costco!
Their “Kirkland” brand of “generic” products have an extremely passionate following, and they have started forays into golf balls, putters, and wedges - all to much fanfare from the masses and much to the chagrin of the established brand-heroes.
There has been much debate since about the viability of the Kirkland products, with claims that they are complete duplicates and replacements of top-line brands all the way to people claiming that they look and feel like complete junk and they would never be caught dead with a Kirkland club in their bag.
This article will try to break down the analysis into some digestible pieces and take away some of the bias and rhetoric and look at the facts surrounding what’s better - Kirkland or Scotty Cameron?
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In This Guide
- Kirkland Putter Overview
- Scotty Cameron Putter Overview
- What Are The Differences Between Kirkland Putter And Scotty Cameron?
- Kirkland KS 1 Putter vs Scotty Cameron
- Scotty Cameron Newport 2 vs Kirkland Putter
- Should I get a Kirkland Putter or Scotty Cameron?
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
Kirkland Putter Overview
The Kirkland KS1 “K-Sig” putter is basically a Scotty Cameron Newport or Newport 2 clone. How good of a clone? Well, the devil is in the details and there is a lot of subjectivity to consider when gauging some of the more subtle differences between the two clubs.
The KS1 is a classic wide blade style head meant to appeal to the broadest segment of golfers possible. It comes with a SuperStroke grip and removable head weights. It features a completely milled design and can be found for a fraction of the price of any other completely milled blade on the market.
Loft: 3 degrees
What We Like
What We Don't Like
It’s no secret that the KS1 is “modeled after” the Scotty Cameron Newports. However the Scotty Cameron Newports weren’t exactly original designs, either. In fact the vast majority of putters on the market are recycling a very small subset of truly original ideas, instead dressing them with different specs and trying different combinations of materials and sizes. On paper this club is almost identical. However golfers love to fuss about that last 1-2%.
The Kirkland putter does a great job of getting you 95% of the way there at less than half the cost. The exact manufacturing tolerances and keen eye for sourcing and handling the highest grade steel cannot be duplicated, and the KS1 will never produce exactly the same finely-tuned balance and feel of a $400+ putter.
Scotty Cameron Putter Overview
Scotty Cameron Newport and Newport 2, (which is just a slightly more squared-off body aesthetic, for the most part) putters have dominated the top-end of the marketplace basically since their introduction in the 1990s. The design takes the classic PING Anser putter and puts every high-end spin on it that Scotty can.
We’ll see a 100% milled body and face to produce the most consistent roll and the best durability and feedback possible. There will typically be removable/changeable weight ports on the bottom. The stock grip is also high quality and delicately balanced with the rest of the club to give a smooth feel.
Scotty Cameron Newport 2 Specs:
Length: 33, 34, or 35”Weight: 350g
Loft: 3.5 degrees
What We Like
What We Don't Like
Scottie Cameron is arguably the premier putter brand in the world today, and the Newport and Newport 2 could be considered the flagship product. It is the quintessential modern putter, and has become synonymous with Tiger Woods’ success over the years. They beat other blade designs through aesthetics, quality, and craftsmanship, focusing on very pleasant and stylish finishes to their clubs as well as being picky about source metals and the one-piece-milled manufacturing process.
The only downside to a Scotty Cameron putter is the price tag, but it’s an investment that can last decades.
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What Are The Differences Between Kirkland Putter And Scotty Cameron?
Strictly on paper, there are almost none. Specs-wise, the Kirkland putter is 10g lighter in its stock setup, but both have adjustable weights (Kirkland kit sold separately).
The other major difference is that the Kirkland putter comes standard with a SuperStroke grip while Scotty Cameron putters come typically with a stock Scotty Cameron branded “pistol” grip.
In effect, however, even though the putters are the same size and shape basically and are built through the same 100% milled technique, there’s a certain high-end harmony that doesn’t show up on paper that will shine through with a premium product like the Scotty Cameron. This can be attributed to slight differences in actual source materials (not all 303 stainless steel is created equal, perhaps) and the exact way in which the components are balanced.
Another difference is that the Scotty Camerons are available in a number of different shaft configurations, including center shafted options.
Kirkland KS 1 Putter vs Scotty Cameron
Kirkland KS1 putters are almost identical to Scotty Cameron Newport putters, at least on paper. By far the biggest difference comes in the amount of paper you’ll have to lay down to get one.
That said, there are definitely other small differences, and what they are worth to you is completely a matter of personal preference. Many are intolerant to those small differences when it comes to something as important as putting, and many are completely ecstatic to get a 100% milled putter that is still of very good quality and save a couple hundred bucks.
Scotty Cameron Newport 2 vs Kirkland Putter
The Kirkland KS1 putter is most comparable to the Scotty Cameron Newport 2. The original Newport has a slightly more “rounded” look around the edges and corners, while the Newport 2 features a more “squared-off” look at address, which the Kirkland KS1 an effect that the Kirkland KS1 also attempts to capture.
When comparing a Newport 2 vs a Kirkland putter, on paper, there are not many differences. A half degree of loft, 10 grams of weight (that can be adjusted), and a different grip (SuperStroke) comes with the Kirkland putter. There are some aesthetics, feels, and the highly-tuned feedback that comes from a $400+ putter (where there are still tighter tolerances in manufacturing, materials sourcing, and in balancing the club) that cannot be matched by the Kirkland. Whether those trade-offs are worth the cost savings are entirely a matter of priorities.
Should I get a Kirkland Putter or Scotty Cameron?
This entirely depends on what you value. Both clubs are objectively some of the best buys in the entire golf market. If you are in the market for either club, you’re going to get a good putter.
The debate really boils down to what putter helps you make the most putts. Regardless of value, appearance, or any other characteristic, the goal at the end of the day is to get the ball in the hole.
The value of branding aside, the Kirkland putter is built to standards that no other putter can match without doubling the price. It is basically unheard of for a putter to be 100% milled at this price point, and there are no competitors. It is a huge boon for the frugal golfer.
That said, if you want to make an investment in your game, and you don’t want to leave anything on the table when you step up to putt, paying more for a Scotty Cameron is a great option. The putters hold value very very well on the resale market and come in a huge variety of shapes, sizes, and customizations to further fit your needs.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Is the Kirkland putter the same as a Scotty Cameron?
Kirkland putters are very similar Scotty Cameron putters. To say that it is the same is a stretch, as most will tell the difference in the exact balance and feel and roll. But it is built to very similar specs, uses a similar aesthetic, and is manufactured with the same process and the same type of steel.
The two titans of putting are made with different stock grips, each of which may fit better with different putting grip styles. This is something to consider if you are demoing off the rack options.
What is the closest putter to Scotty Cameron?
The closest putter to a Scotty Cameron is arguably made by Scotty Cameron’s ex-business-partner Robert Bettinardi, as their Bettinardi line takes advantage of the same CNC milling techniques and produces high-end putters in the same space.
The Kirkland KS1 might be the most outright “clone” of a Scotty Cameron that we’ve seen, but backs it up by also using the same CNC milling techniques that set many other high-dollar putters apart.
Where is the Kirkland KS1 putter made?
The Kirkland KS1 putter is made in China, just like almost every golf club on the market.
Who did Kirkland partner with to make the KS1 putter?
There is some speculation to this, as it is not stated on the product details by Kirkland. However, Kirkland’s vice-president said in an interview that they partnered with a reputable Chinese manufacturer who makes clubs for other well-known brands.
There is also some speculation on the internet that Costco has leveraged their previous relationship with Carlsbad-based Callaway golf company to help design and build the club.
What is the alternative to the Kirkland Signature KS1 putter?
There are really very few direct alternatives to a Kirkland Signature KS1 putter because it is almost unheard of to have putters that are 100% milled at this price-point. One great putter that can make that claim is the Maltby Pure-Track Tour Milled Putter.
The only other alternatives that consumers have are to switch to a premium 100% milled putter like a Bettinardi or Scotty Cameron (for 2x-3x the price or more) or to switch to a putter that is made of much cheaper materials and processes for the same price (such as a Top Flite type of putter).
One other good option for shoppers who are stuck between the extremes of Scotty Cameron vs Costco are Cleveland putters. These provide a very happy medium by delivering cost savings while still building a product that delivers in the areas that matter.
While Scotty Cameron and Kirkland putters may look very very similar both to the eye and on paper, golfers are known to nit pick every option on the market, and that has set the stage for some epic debates regarding the merits of a Kirkland Putter vs Scotty Cameron.
In the end it mostly comes down to personal opinion. It’s pretty clear what you are getting when you get into the putter game. There are basically thousands of combinations of a fairly limited set of options, and it comes down to basically overall quality and personal fit/preference.
Scotty Cameron’s are the most stylish putters on the market. The Kirkland KS1 putter might be one of the most practical and high-value buys in the entire golf equipment game. They are by no means exactly the same product, and both of them are the perfect buy for a lot of different reasons - it just depends what you’re looking for!
Keep in mind, when shopping for a Scotty Cameron putter, be sure to keep an eye out for counterfeits. Scotty Camerons are one of the most counterfeited golf clubs out there.