- The limited-run PING PLD Prime Tyne 4 is the first PLD putter PING has released since 2018.
- The PLD Prime Tyne 4 is a compact version of the Sigma 2 Tyne 4.
- The production run of the PLD Prime Tyne 4 is very limited.
With stealthy panache, PING recently released the limited-edition PLD Prime Tyne 4 putter, a cloaked-in-shadows version of their Tyne 4 putter.
Everything about this putter is shrouded in mystery. So much so that you can’t even find it on PING’s own website. The PLD Prime Tyne 4 putter launch may be the most covert release I have observed in my tenure as a putter collector.
Now that you know it exists, you probably have some questions about the Prime Tyne 4. What does PLD stand for? How does it compare to a normal Tyne 4? Where can I get one? Don’t worry. I’ve got the answers you need to bring this dark beauty into the light.
PING PLD: Putting Lab Design
PLD stands for Putting Lab Design. PLD putter lines are characterized by limited production runs and unique design ideas the PING engineers are experimenting with. The first time PING released a putter under the PLD moniker was back in 2017. The PLD1 program allowed golfers to design a custom Anser 2 using an online interface. That program was available for a very short time and has yet to be repeated. Again, PLD putters are essentially prototypes that release to the public.
A few months later, PING unveiled the PLD2, a limited-run version of the Ketsch featuring Realtree Camo applied with a newly developed Permodizing process. Permodizing was a new technique for applying the graphics to the putter. At the time, it seemed like PLD releases featuring these experimental technologies were going to be a regular thing from PING. Then things got quiet.
We didn’t see another PLD putter for a year. In 2018, Corey Connors used a prototype PLD Mid-Mallet to win the Valspar Championship and a few months later PING released the PLD3. Once again, the run was limited and the putter featured an experimental torched-copper finish.
After that putter, the PING PLD program embraced Wonka-like reclusiveness and was not seen by the public until the PLD Prime Tyne 4 surfaced this month.
Specifications: PING PLD Prime Tyne 4
- Body Material: Milled S25C carbon steel
- Hosel Material: Milled T6 6061 aluminum
- Body Finish: Black PVD
- Hosel Finish: Black anodized
- Head Weight: 360g
- Dexterity: Left- or right-handed
- Stroke Type: Slight arc
- Grip: PP58 Black midsize
- Shaft: Stealth stepless shaft
- Price: $439.99
Ready For Prime Tyne
And so after a nearly two-year hiatus, PING is once again offering a PLD putter to the public. Though not officially called the PLD4, I am fairly certain this would be the fourth in the series. Perhaps PING is subtly pointing this out by selecting the Tyne 4 as the base model.
Perhaps a better reason for PING pick the Tyne for the limited-edition treatment is that it is the model of PING staffer Cameron Champ. Cameron is a bit of a legend here in NorCal. I met Cameron back when he was a junior golfer and, even back then, he was a ridiculously long hitter. More than that, he is a really nice guy, something that has continued into his career as a professional.
Cameron and his father have taken over a nine-hole course here in Sacramento, Foothill Golf Course, with the central focus of helping junior golfers get into the game. Cameron is a great role model for junior golfers.
PING doesn’t produce golfer-specific signature models so while this putter is not a physical match for Cameron’s putter, the Prime Tyne name is surely a nod to his successes on and off the course.
Obviously, since this is a limited-run putter, and with a PLD designation, it can’t be a typical Tyne 4. It’s not. Hopefully, you already noticed that the finish is different. The PLD Prime Tyne is fully murdered out. Darkness begins with black paint accenting a black PVD finish. A black shaft and PING PP58 midsized grip complete the colorless theme. The finish is rich but not overly glossy in the sun. PING did a solid job with the aesthetics.
Smaller Than The Average Tyne 4
The other feature that sets the PLD Prime Tyne apart from the stock Sigma 2 Tyne 4 is size. The PLD Prime Tyne has a smaller overall profile than the Sigma 2 Tyne 4 but weighs only 10 grams less than its larger kin. Some of this is accomplished through material differences and some of the change comes through architectural alteration. The PLD Prime Tyne is a smaller, thicker and nearly all stainless-steel version of the stock Tyne 4.
The face is insert-free metal of the smoothest topography. Perhaps that is not too surprising, as PING’s current Heppler line also features smooth faces. You may have noticed that this version of the Tyne fits a slight arc path, deviating from both the strong arc of the Tyne 4 and the straight path of Cameron’s two winning putters.
Where Can I Buy a PLD Prime Tyne 4?
This is where the story gets really interesting.
The simple answer is check with your local or online PING retailer. However, these are limited editions so your retailer may not have one. How limited is the run? PING won’t disclose the number produced but the fact that they don’t have it on their website speaks volumes or perhaps lack of volumes. So far, I’ve spotted these at a few online places such as DICK’S Sporting Goods and Golf Galaxy. Morton Golf had them but now their product page is gone. If you see one available, it probably makes sense to move on it. Otherwise, you may be stuck searching eBay.
Are You Ready For Prime Tyne?
What are your thoughts on this release? What do you think about the putter or the fact that PING rolled it out with minimal fanfare? It’s amazing to me that in this era of hype and massive digital communication that PING’s whole marketing plan for the PLD Prime Tyne 4 consisted of one post on Instagram and this tweet:
Introducing the limited-edition PLD Prime Tyne 4. A tour-inspired mallet milled from S25C Carbon Steel with a black PVD finish. 🔥🔥 Check with your local PING-authorized golf shop for availability. pic.twitter.com/jrHpEqsAdZ
— PING GOLF (@PingTour) November 6, 2020
Perhaps limiting the promotion was an exercise in kindness on PING’s part. They knew the PLD Prime Tyne 4 run was very limited in number. Had they really hyped it and got a bunch of people wanting to buy one, then there would have been a bunch of people disappointed that they missed out.
I guess I have just let a whole bunch of people know this putter exists. So much for maintaining the PLD Prime Tyne 4’s “Fight Club” status. Sorry, PING. This putter was too cool to keep quiet. I am really hoping this putter marks a return to more frequent PLD releases. Hopefully, those of you who are digging this version of the Tyne 4 can find one. In case you missed it above, there are left-handed models out there as well. Happy hunting.
Normally, this is where I’d suggest that you head to PING.com for more info…