Expert Review: Cleveland HB Soft Milled #10.5 Center Shaft PutterPublished on 04/19/2023 · 4 min readThis review is my honest opinion of the putter, which I tested for one day in March of 2023.
All photos courtesy of David L. Brown
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the putter, which I tested for one day in March of 2023.
The Cleveland HB Soft Milled #10.5 Center Shaft Putter is great for the “feel” who wants optimal weight and feel within their putter. I think anyone would benefit from this putter, but those who are less mechanical and more “feel” putters will love the milled softness that the putter face offers.
About the club I tested
- Model: 2023 Cleveland HB Soft Milled #10.5 Center Shaft Putter
- Shape: Mallet
- Hosel Neck: Center Shaft
- Balance Point: 12”
- Shaft Length: 35”
- Grip Type: Traditional
- Finish: Silver
- Average Score: 79
- Handicap: 7
- Experience: 22 years of golf
- Right/Left-Handed: Right-Handed
- Stroke Type: Straight back and through
- Golf Ball Used: 2021 Maxfli practice ball
- Height: 5’10”
- When I tested the putter: March 2023
- Days tested: 1
- Where I’ve used it: Practice Green
- Weather and Wind Conditions: Indoor Turf
- Green Speed: Slow to Medium
- Grass Type: Turf
How it performs
What I was looking for
I was looking for a mallet putter that was within my budget and offered more distance control and feel than my current Odyssey putter.
Why I chose to test this club
This club's milled metal design creates an incredibly soft feel where each putt is felt all the way up to the hands. Distance control and consistency on 10-foot and closer putts are premium. I did not purchase the putter, but I am leaning toward buying one of the HB Soft putters because of their performance relative to their value. They offer touch and softness on the greens, much like a Scotty Cameron, but for a third of the cost.
What I love about it
- Face Feel: The milled metal design allows for one of the softest feeling putter faces on the market, creating consistency on longer lag putts but also for the feel around the hole on closer ones.
- Forgiveness: The forgiveness is huge as putts struck off-centered can still stay on line and find their way to the hole due to the higher MOI that keeps the putter moving through contact at the apex of the stroke.
- Weight: The 10.5 version comes in at 370g, which is heavier than my current putter (365g), but I love the way that it keeps the putter down and through on each stroke.
- Length: I prefer a 35” putter as it allows me to have an easy straight back and straight-through swing arc with my arms naturally hanging straight down.
- Aesthetic Appeal: The silver finish with the black backing and white lines has a sweet look. I also love the milled lines on the putter face that has all one texture and look.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Alignment: The triple lines on the back of the head are not my favorite. I have always enjoyed a single line on my putter to simplify the approach. However, the triple lines make me more confused and less confident that I actually have the ball lined up correctly.
- Grip Feel: The standard grip is tacky, which was appealing but not good enough to customize the grip as I enjoy an oversized pistol grip on my putters. The oversized pistol grip allows me to feel more connected with my hands throughout the putting stroke.
- Customization: The putter doesn’t have any adjustable weights to make the putter heavier or lighter. This putter is already on the heavier side, but someone who wants it to be lighter doesn’t have that option like some of the current putters on the market (M.Craft and Triple Track series).
Best Putt or Round with this Putter
I made my first seven putts within 10 feet, and they were all in the center of the hole. This stood out to me as some putters I can go five or more putts and not make a single one picking it up off the rack. The feel within the putter's face due to its SOFT features is truly what makes this putter stand out.
Value for the money vs. other options
I think the HB Soft Milled #10.5 Center Shaft is a great value for around $149. I think it performs much better than the Odyssey DFX series (#1 and Rossie), which is priced similarly and just as well as the M.Craft Series from Mizuno at about $299. Overall, it is one of the best values on the market for its price and performance.
If someone is looking for a new putter and wants the best bang for its buck options, the HB Soft Milled #10.5 Center Shaft from Cleveland is definitely one to consider.