Project image
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£1,460
pledged of £100,000pledged of £100,000 goal
6
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Wed, April 30 2014 5:43 AM UTC +00:00
£1,460
pledged of £100,000pledged of £100,000 goal
6
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Wed, April 30 2014 5:43 AM UTC +00:00

About

Zen Works

Founded on the principles of the famous Skunk Works philosophy that developed the Mach 3 Lockheed Blackbird supersonic plan, Zen Works has been established primarily to create radical innovations in the Golf industry; the only difference being that we don’t have a large corporation backing us! We are all about achieving outstanding results, in compressed time frames whilst ignoring the constraints of traditional thinking. We started this adventure a few years ago, and have since created an Golf Lab in our research facility to test metal matrix composites, advanced manufacturing and 3D printing amongst others, in conjunction with our partners across the Yorkshire region.

Our Successes To Date:

  • First golf company to introduce "dimple error" putter face technology which improves success for short putts.
  • First company to introduce a tournament putter with a built-in training system designed to lower your score.
  • Leading tour players have already used the technology and training to win major events.

What We Hope To Achieve:

  • The World's most technically advanced putter.
  • To manufacture using materials taken from the 1000mph car
  • Make a technological leap in materials technology specifically to golf
  • Create a putter of provenance that accrues value by a unique association with a landmark event in history.
  • Translate the Bloodhound SSC legacy into Golf sport engineering.
  • 'Kickstart' the Zen Works project in order to accomplish further product offerings of this nature.

Bloodhound SSC

We have teamed up with Bloodhound SSC whose mission is to build the first car to break 1000 mph. More people have walked on the moon than driven past the speed of sound. At an estimated cost of £150 million Bloodhound is not just the most incredible challenge set for planet earth, it is also an "engineering adventure" that ignites interest in the key skills of science and how these subjects can be taught in schools with greater engagement. Our challenge is to encapsulate this same engineering excellence and spirit of adventure by creating the most awesome Golf Putter of all time. Here is a short video to introduce you to project Bloodhound SSC land speed project.

Richard Noble OBE, Bloodhound SSC (left) with Nick Middleton of Zen Works (Right) and Karl Woodward (Centre)
Richard Noble OBE, Bloodhound SSC (left) with Nick Middleton of Zen Works (Right) and Karl Woodward (Centre)

Richard Noble OBE has this to say about the record-breaking golf project: “The technical challenges facing Bloodhound SSC as we attempt to break the 1000mph barrier will undoubtedly lead to a quantum leap forward for British engineering. I’m really excited see how these emerging technologies can be harnessed to break barriers in Golf Sports engineering”.

To find out more, please visit www.bloodhoundssc.com

Zen Bloodhound Putter 

This is what we will achieve: An exclusive Limited Edition Zen Bloodhound Putter created using the exact same materials and technology from the most adventurous and expensive car ever produced. This unique putter will showcase the next generation impact technology which delivers perfect launch conditions; while the training aperture will be constructed from the same unique alloy developed for the car wheels. Together, these will be fused into into a distinctive Bloodhound styled body to create the ultimate putter that is both elegant as it will also deliver superior performance to match. Each putter will have the signatures of Wing Commander Andy Green OBE (Bloodhound pilot) and Richard Noble OBE (Project Director) engraved on the putter head to confirm the authenticity of this highly collectable masterpiece of golf engineering.

We want to create 1000 putters, one for each mile per hour of the target record attempt. In a similar vein to Bloodhound, Zen Works are looking to deliver their project through means of crowd funding. And, the first 100 units to be produced will therefore act as a catalyst for our mission as well as bestow particular significance for the collectors.  

Material

The wheels are one of the most critical components in the car. And, to capture the true essence of the Bloodhound SSC 1000 mph car, we will recover the aluminum used to build the wheels and reconfigure this material to create the bezel set into the sole of the putter. Take a moment to view the incredible approach being taken by the Bloodhound SSC design team as they embark on the quest to create the fastest wheels in history.

The images below help to illustrate how we will transpose the profile of the wheel rim to form the bezel of the putter which, in so doing will profile elegant functionality while at the same time provide a touch stone in homage to the Bloodhound SSC project as it is preserved for ever in the Zen Bloodhound putter.

The Putter Face

The Zen Bloodhound putter will showcase the next generation of RDE face technology code name: RDE Wave. This will provide an enhancement on the existing performance. Limited trials were undertaken at the Open Championship 2013, consultation with leading tour players confirms the Zen Wave technology is preferred over its former version. Most notably for its ability to enhance distance control which is an essential skill in the art of putting, but perhaps more importantly, launch the ball more accurately towards the Hole.

Alignment

The putter has an optical alignment system which improves setup. This is achieved by using the fin in conjunction with the training aperture which enables the player to fix their dominant eye on the correct line.

The Feel

  • Response: The combination of the materials and face technology enhances the harmonic response. This provides more accurate feedback and enables the golfer to correctly judge distance whilst intensifying the overall sensory feedback essential to improve this skill set. 
  • Weighting: It has a high polar weighting which maximizes the sweet spot and is more forgiving for off-center strikes. This putter aims to alleviate the "Yips" which is a known issue related to performance anxiety where involuntary jerkiness prevents the golfer from making their intended putting stroke.
  • Swing: This putter is balanced in two planes (horizontal and along the shaft) and has as a one-piece, pendulum-like swing. It is designed to deliver the putter face square at impact with improved timing and rhythm.

The Grip

Recent changes in the rules means that the use of long putters or anchoring the club to the body will be made illegal in competition. Leading research within sports neuroscience has revealed significant opportunities to improve grip design and technology. This project will seek to harness manufacturing methods and design philosophies from the Bloodhound project to improve swing kinematics and reduce adverse tension in the forearms and hands.

Prototype

 The Package:

The putter itself will be delivered inside a tailored flight case and will contain:

  • The Zen Bloodhound Putter.
  • A Zen Bloodhound book with a brief background to Zen, Bloodhound SSC and will contain a description of the putter itself. It will also include advice and training on how to lower your score, derived from the famous Zen Oracle Training System.
  • Material authentication derived from the original mill certificate. This will provide an Assay type mark confirming the aluminum in the bezel of the putter is extracted directly from the block used to make the Bloodhound wheels.
  • Authentication certificate stating the serial number and your name.  

The Manufacturing Process

The Design Story To Date...

Stage 1. Research

Before any design work was done, we undertook research into the technology behind the putter as well as the market for high performance and collectable golf products. 

The Reduced Dimple Error "RDE" Wave face technology and the Flow Motion direct feedback training approach have been assessed favorably by Sheffield Hallam University Sports Engineering and Sports Science faculty who are widely reputed for their expertise in these area of research.

Stage 2. Concept of Design

Alongside PES (Performance Engineered Solutions), we spent many weeks conceptually designing and brainstorming the putter design and proposed many variations. We knew that we wanted to keep the harmony between Bloodhound SSC Car and the putter, and therefore spent a lot of time linking the putter features to the car to ensure the cars features were at the forefront of the putter's design.

As a result, we prioritized the components that we thought were critical to the car's design and came up with a concept that incorporated the following elements of the car:

Front Profile;
Air Intake;
Aero Side Features; 
Solid Rocket Exhaust System;  
Colouring;
Wheel Profile;
The Car's Fins.

3. Design

With these key parameters in place, we set about the design of the putter head. Below are some images of our design process from sketches to a finished model:

 

 4. Product Development & Prototype


Below are some images and video of the putter being developed and prototyped:


 
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Proposed Timeline


Zen Bloodhound Golf Team

 
Nick Middleton: Founder Zen Oracle Golf
A Millennium Product Award winner and member of the European Tour Performance Institute advisory panel, Nick holds numerous patents and designs in golf equipment and coaching; most notably the Zen Oracle Putter. He founded Zenjin, the golf sport science programme where the term “Zenjineer” was coined to express a holistic approach to performance enhancement that embodies Mind Body Motion. The Zen – Bloodhound Golf project forms the pinnacle in Nick’s quest to highlight the resurgence of British Invention, Engineering and Manufacturing as the catalyst for economic growth and national pride.

Karl Woodward: Guinness World Long Drive Recorder Holder.
Karl first broke the World Long Drive record in September 1991 and has since gone on to break it a further 7 times. He is no stranger to precision engineering having served his formative career in the oil industry prior to turning his not inconsiderable talents to golf. This took him to consult with two of the major golf club manufacturers in the development of their metal woods and the first multimaterial composite golf shaft, he was also instrumental in the MOI matching area of golf club performance. When not blasting golf balls out of sight Karl is equally relaxed in the company of fast cars and now has the realization of his burning ambition to be part of the worlds greatest “Drive in Golf”.

 
Vincent Middleton: Chairman, Zen Works
Vince has been in engineering and manufacturing for 30 years and has developed a vast bank of knowledge across most sectors that engage with advanced engineering techniques. He is Chairman of Newburgh Engineering, one of the nation’s best recognised precision engineering companies, which acts as a product sponsor to the Bloodhound team. Through his links with the AMRC and many other leading technology companies and the association with Zen it was evident that the solution to a step change in golfing technology was about to be born. With the knowledge of what can now be manufactured and an understanding of the challenges faced by Bloodhound SSC, he is looking forward to being part of the team that deliver the ultimate in club technology.

Mike Maddock: Project Engineering Director 
Mike first became acquainted with Bloodhound driver, Andy Green, over a number of years competing against each other at the Cresta run Inter Services annual competition while serving in the Royal Navy operating as Clearance Diver and Bomb disposal expert. His experience competing as an international athlete in elite winter sports before entering the R&D sports performance arena, have witnessed Mike developing a cool head while working in extreme environments. As MD and co-owner of Performance Engineered Solutions Ltd (PES), the Sheffield based engineering design team; Mike is a key player in the new Zen Works Golf programme formed to undertake this prestigious project with Bloodhound.

Dan Fleetcroft: Engineering Design Director
Dan Fleetcroft, a qualified aerospace engineer, started his career at Ferrari’s Formula-One team under the mentorship and legendry technical director, John Barnard. Dan worked with John for 15 years working in multiple F1 teams, Kenny Roberts’ Moto GP team and Barnard’s B3 Technologies. At B3 Dan delivered solutions across multiple sectors including aerospace, automotive, defence, medical, marine, elite sports equipment and Olympic sport. Today the application of this extensive knowledge in engineering design, simulation, materials and manufacturing technologies benefits Performance Engineered Solutions Ltd, co-owned design engineering business based on the Advanced Manufacturing Park, Sheffield.

Dr Derek Marriott MBA: Project R&D Director 
Derek is the co-founder of Green Factory, a company created to identify ways the golf industry can optimise performance through innovative management of resources. He has extensive industrial experience working with high performance computers and 3D graphics systems. This has led to consultancy work across Computer Aided Design, Computer Gaming, Sports and other Creative Industries. Recent collaborative work has focussed on data capture and visualisation of complex biomechanical data. Derek is a Chartered IT Professional (CITP), Fellow of the British Computer Society (FBCS), Member of the Turing Centenary Advisory Committee and Member of Beta Gamma Sigma. His expertise in computer modelling, systems analysis and visualization will play a vital role as the Team explores ways to synchronize the performance of Golfer and equipment.

Training Motor Control

The Zen Oracle training concept provides the first legally conforming putter which incorporates an aperture immediately behind the striking face. The aperture holds a practice ball during the stroke which when released in the follow through provides immediate feedback on the key parameters necessary to perfect a consistent result. See below:

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Coaching

Here is a short video of Zen coaching and training to give you some idea of what we do:

What Karl Woodward (Guinness World Record Holder for the longest drive) said about Zen:

"Drive for Show & Putt for Dough...While I have never had a problem with distance, my only weakness is Putting. This is the Money Shot! After my first session using the Zen Oracle with Nick Middleton the "Putting Mechanic" I was amazed just how the training gave me the instant feedback and showed me the way to go. The results were sensational, in fact after just a few goes I was holing long putts with just one hand and my eyes shut!!!". 

What will Kickstarter do for Zen Works?

Raising the capital for the project will effectively 'Kickstart' the Zen Works program to develop a whole host of radical and dynamic golf products using cutting edge materials. Zen Works will renaissance British manufacturing in similar vein to Bloodhound SSC, to manufacture golf equipment in Sheffield, the City of Sport. This will unite the tradition of the City with the more prominent sport culture we have, to blend Sheffield manufacturing with Sheffield sport.

We will invest the money raised into our own skills gaps, machinery, R&D and the manufacture of product to take Zen beyond the current standards of leading golf brands in the modern day market. We hope to challenge the big brands in the market by differentiating ourselves through the development of 'off-the-wall' and 'expert' golfing products to enter the premium golf market, to then become the most desired brand in golf.

That is what Kickstarter will Kickstart!

MADE IN SHEFFIELD!

Having formed a few years ago in Sheffield, England, the team of engineers, scientists and golfing fanatics have set to challenging those traditional thoughts in the golfing arena. Sheffield is a hotspot of sports science and engineering, with Boeing, Rolls Royce and many others choosing it as their center of excellence for cutting edge manufacturing technology. Our great relationships across the region have allowed us to have access to some of the Worlds best manufacturing facilities, along with outstanding sports knowledge and performance enhancing technology to create the Zen Bloodhound concept.

Advanced Manufacturing Park
Advanced Manufacturing Park

Our manufacturing partner, Newburgh Engineering are proud to be associated with the Made In Sheffield brand, and will uphold our commitment to ensuring the manufacturing remains in the region!

Where do we go from here?

The fun doesn't end here! The proposed plans are to start on the manufacture of the World's most sophisticated golfing driver, in an attempt to break the current World Record for the longest drive: currently standing at 408 yards 10 inches. This will be done in collaboration with both Bloodhound and Karl Woodward, the current World Record holder!

This again is a challenging prospect but we can only do this with your support! To find out more on the Bloodhound driver, please visit:www.golfbusinessnews.com/news/new-products/bloodhound-driver-will-attempt-world-record/ 

What people say about Zen:

Pete Cowen, European Tour Coach: “The Zen-i helps you develop your feel for the stroke and a sense of true Release. The Tour Players I coach have been amazed how quickly this training system becomes their own best teacher. I would rank this as one of the most essential components in the Golf coaching tool set”

Dr Joe Parent, leading US PGA Tour Golf Psychologist and Author of top selling Zen Golf and Zen Putting: “The Zen-I is simply the best training system for grooving flow and tempo in your stroke. It’s the perfect partner for my coaching work. No wonder the Pros love it”

Graham Walker -Coach to Danny Willett (former World #1 Amateur), English Golf Union, European Tour Coach, Top 25 Golf Monthly Coach: "I introduced the Zen Oracle training concept to my golf schools in where it continues to be a fundamental part of my teaching philosophy aimed at developing the Champions of tomorrow. It certainly works to intensify the correct feelings of the putting stroke and many use it to correct long term faults in just minutes."

 Steve North. Director of Instruction at St Andrews Links Golf Academy“The Zen Oracle is an essential tool in the St Andrews Links Golf Academy putting studio. Here, we use it in conjunction with the Science & Motion Putt Lab to provide immediate and compelling evidence as to its effectiveness for golfers of all skill levels.  The training drills quickly correct any compensations and emphasises the feedback required to master a consistent putting stroke.”

Chris Hanson. EuroPro Tour Winner: "After a few hours with Nick it really opened my eyes to how I should approach putting. The impact on my game has been outstanding and, combined with the Zen putter technology; it has certainly enabled me to take the next step. Now my belief to hole every putt is finally there! I won my first event shortly after my first session with Nick. Thanks"

What the media says about Zen:

 “Zen is not just a putter company, but a way of putting. Zen should be on the emergency contact list of every frustrated Golfer, and the classic look of their equipment is first rate in every way Putter fans will remember the Zen Oracle training putter was designed to encourage a smooth putting motion. This design allows the weight to be distributed to the perimeter. Not impressed? Then skip the seminar and just use the putter. Any questions? We didn't think so”. Golf Digest

“There comes a time when you have to hold both hands up and accept the claims made about a product. This new fangled putter with a built in practice aid could become one of the finest golf inventions of the year." Bob Warters, Editor Golfmagic.com

“…Preferred by the discerning player, Zen has already established itself as a major success on both the US & European Tour”. Richard Simmons, Editor Golf International.

Reader’s Comment….“This must be the best invention in golf! I have used the putter together with the XtendAlign putting alignment system and my putting has improved tremendous. I am a 4 handicap, but after this season I should easily be close to 2 or less just by putting better. So, if you are going to buy one club this year, you should go for the Zen!”. Golf International.

"The new Zen is the most visually distinctive putter on test, it’s a little surprising that Zen have topped our reader poll. However, the things our readers loved most about this high-tech club were the feel, balance and weight. Perimeter weighting has been used to boost the MOI factor and help with forgiveness on off-centre". National Cub Golfer.

The Zen Oracle RDE Mallet wins Best New Concept putter in major National Club Golfer survey and top marks in the Value category:

"Zen is the most intelligently designed putters in the last two years. Uniquely, this is a putter that works equally well on the Course and as a Trainer. Extremely stable through the stroke and resistant to twisting when you catch one off-centre, the Oracle’s face Ridges – not grooves – help to combat side spin. On the practice green you can use the myriad training drill. Many custom fit options too!”

New Zen Oracle RDE Mallet wins "Best on Test " in National Club Readers Survey:

For the second time Zen has been the handsome winner by 4 clear points in a major survey of new design putters. Once again, Zen proved to provide an all-round package boasting their unique composition of performance and game improvement. Its combination of striking looks, Tour feel AND exceptional value meant the panel were completely won over.

Our Partners:

 
 

I hope that if you have read this far then hopefully we have convinced you that we can deliver the project and you feel like helping us achieve our funding goal.

Without you, none of the above will be possible!

And please remember, that the more we raise, the more we can do…

Risks and challenges

- Insufficient funding to see the project through
- R&A rule changes
- Challenge in the manufacturing technologies
- Ensuring testing is rigorous and accurate

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About US$ 12

    Receive a Zen Bloodhound Putter supporter e-certificate along with a Bloodhound e-certificate and your name goes on the fin of the car. Every donation brings us closer to our 1000 Bloodhound Putters!

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    Pledge £12 or more About US$ 15

    Receive an OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter branded cap. The sun in your eyes is a thing of the past!

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    Pledge £25 or more About US$ 30

    Receive an OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter branded polo shirt. Show off to everyone on the golf course with this stylish polo shirt!

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    Pledge £70 or more About US$ 85

    You will receive an OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter branded waterproof jacket to keep you protected from all of the elements out on the course!

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £150 or more About US$ 181

    You will be invited to the Bloodhound SSC factory for a visit around the workshop along with a presentation from the Bloodhound team!

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    Pledge £300 or more About US$ 363

    An exclusive pass to visit the Q2 2015 car testing at Newquay Airport to see the Bloodhound SSC Car in action!

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,000 or more About US$ 1,209

    What everyone has been waiting for- The OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter. You will receive one of the 1000 exclusive putters with your own unique serial number!

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    Pledge £1,250 or more About US$ 1,511

    You will receive the OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter with the serial number 007, 77 or 777 - Even Luckier for others and one to die for - We will draw the names out of the hat to see who gets which serial number!

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,350 or more About US$ 1,632

    You will receive the OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter with the serial number 8, 88 or 888 - Lucky for some - We will draw the names out of the hat to see who gets which serial number!

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,500 or more About US$ 1,813

    You will receive the OFFICIAL Zen Bloodhound Putter with the serial number 1 or 1000 - Not to be missed - We will draw the names out of the hat to see who gets which serial number!

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Funding period

- (30 days)