So, what of tinkerer’s block?

After googling hard for answers, it seems it genuinely doesn’t exist. There are some interesting results, though.

“How to drain a smeltery.”

“How do you empty a casting basin?”

“How do you repair obsidian tools in Tinkers’ Construct?”

But what if you really do have tinkerer’s block? It doesn’t seem possible, does it? There’s always something to fix – a screw to fasten, a washing line to tighten, a bicycle brake pad to change. But they’re not really tinkering, are they? They’re jobs while you’re looking for something to tinker with.

Tinkering is tinkering; it’s tooling about. Taking something that’s perfectly fine and altering it to make it perfectly finer. Tinkerers deal in the umpteenth of improvements, then tell everyone how much better things work. By definition, it’s to “attempt to repair or improve something in a casual or desultory way.” I don’t know what desultory means, but it sounds bad. It sounds like a fancy word for lazy, or lacking direction. It sounds like time wasting.

Well, gosh darn it! Tinkering is important! And I’ve been to the well and back trying to find something to tinker with because, against all odds, I’ve had tinkerer’s block. It’s been like being cast out to sea on a raft without a screwdriver or pliers or a little saw to make “I’ve been stuck at sea for this many days” markings with. It’s awful. And it’s been awful, until the other day.

Now, it’s interesting (is it really?) that I mentioned the bicycle brake pad change. With council clean-up only 11 suburbs away last weekend, I hit the road looking for a bike I could pull the rear brake mechanism from, because mine doesn’t work so well. In good news, not only did I find a bike to demolish with a rear pack rack and a basket, but I found something to set my golf tinkering heart alight.

It’s funny how life works out, because a golf tinkering project wasn’t even front of mind. Sometimes, even when you’re wandering through a metaphorical tinkering desert in a desultory way, the God of Tinker will strike. No one was more surprised or delighted than me.

For there it was. A leather chair. A big, overstuffed, huge cushioned leather chair. On the same pile as the bike with good brake pads and the basket and pack rack. And it was actual leather, shiny on one side, suede on the other.

A golf chair – you’re thinking? Something comfortably foul to watch the majors in while your family look on in disbelief? You know they look at you and wonder how you all manage to cohabitate in the same place because they’re literally nothing like you. Alas, that was not the case this time.

It wasn’t the chair I was interested in, just the leather of the chair. In fact, in a show of great discipline, I only took the leather of the cushion, leaving the fluffy guts behind.


To tinker, of course.

To make the most beautiful putter grip ever. Seriously. THE BEST PUTTER GRIP EVER!

I know you’ll want one, too. But given the market place is not exactly flooded with natural leather putting grips, you’ll have to make your own – that’s the good news.

What’s the bad news? That’s the other good news, there is none. And, to quote the commentators who all seem stuck on the phrase, “he’s got to get the job done,” here’s how you can get the job done.

Cut the man-made non-biodegradable plasticy rubbery sleeve off your thick-gripped putter grip and you’ll find a thick rubbery plasticy base that still provided some girth for comfort. Apply a base of double-sided tape and there’s a very sticky platform to work from.

Cut a strip out of your comfy leather cushion into the longest possible length, about an inch wide. You might need two strips. If it’s your cushion you’re cutting, use the underside, it’ll take longer to get nailed for cutting it up if no one sees the scar left behind.

Here’s the fun bit. You just wrap the strips – suede side out – down and around the putter handle. Trim the top and the bottom for a perfect fit. It’s easy. I promise. Not just beautiful to use, but natural, like your putting stroke.

The BEST PUTTER GRIP EVER – and you tinkered it yourself. Don’t believe me? Ask Jimmy Emanuel, Golf Australia’s super reviewer.*


Whenever I see Andrew Daddo, there is always a latest and greatest to peruse. In the case of his old/new couch cushion/putter grip I was extremely impressed.

The wrapping job was perfect, the suede material was soft but there was enough texture to have no issues with sweaty hands and the size was great, particularly if you get a little yippy around the hole.