Pencil bags have seen a real rise in popularity lately, and part of the change is down to brands realising golfers might actually want to use a tiny lightweight bag every time they play, rather than just as an infrequent alternative to a more substantial carry or trolley bag.
TG Equipment Editor Simon Daddow loves his mini stand bag, so with more reasonably priced options flooding the market, we thought it was time to ask four TG readers, all members at Woodhall Spa in Lincs, if they’d ditch their regular stand bags for Mizuno’s new alternative option, the BR-D2 Mini, which has a waterproof under belly and a mini stand to keep your clubs dry when the fairways are wet.
What were your first impressions of the mini Mizuno bag?
MW: It’s really smart and compact. I had no problems getting a full set of waterproofs, and a variety of winter hats/gloves in the surprisingly sizeable pockets. The side mesh pocket was perfect for my laser and a few balls. There was just about enough space for my 13 midsize grips and an oversized putter grip.
DD: It’s a great looking bag. I always like to be fully prepared when on the course with a jacket, spare gloves, balls, drinks and a rangefinder, but there was space for everything.
JF: While grips were prone to catching a little, I was really impressed how the skeleton of the bag didn’t dig into your side or back.
GR: I really like the mini stand, which just keeps most of the bag off the ground. No problems getting a full set in, I will need to look at what I actually carry on the course in the future, though.
Was there a weight difference to your regular bag? Did the waterproof under belly keep your clubs dry?
MW: Pencil bags are a great way to play golf year round. You only take what you need unlike a traditional stand bag, where you hoard far too much stuff. The bag did an excellent job of keeping my grips dry and the stand kept it clear of the mud, too.
DD: There’s a significant weight difference to my regular stand bag for sure. I used the bag in all conditions and the combination of the stand and the waterproof underbelly kept all my kit dry. The valuables pocket has a waterproof zip which is also a great idea.
JF: It’s soooo light... After the design the lack of weight is what you notice most. It’s hard to believe just how light. And yes apart from the straps which are difficult to keep off the ground, the bag stayed clean and kept my kit dry.
GR: The weight is very similar to my Ping pencil bag, but it still kept my clubs dry. I reckon for away trips thanks to the size and weight it would be the perfect bag.
The product: Mizuno BR-D2 Mini Stand Bag £110
Will you continue to use the bag now the test is over? Is £110 a fair price? And would you recommend other golfers give them a try?
MW: Pencil bags have moved on massively, and this latest generation makes them viable as a year-round alternative, so it really will be a toss-up between this and my current bag. I’ve seen this bag for about £90 which is top end for the category, but absolutely I’d recommend other golfers look again at pencil/mini stand bags.
DD: For me this style of bag is definitely a year-round option, it’s light and comfortable, and you could get two in a reasonably sized travel cover, when going abroad. Yes I’ll be using it from now on, other golfers should give them a second look too. If you can find one for £90 that seems a very fair price to me.
JF: 100% I’ll keep using the bag, why wouldn’t I? It’s light, convenient and really good at what it’s supposed to do, which is help you get your golf gear round the course efficiently.
GR: I’ll be using the bag predominantly from spring – autumn, if you want to carry waterproofs as well I just thought it was a bit of squeeze getting them in the bag. But I’d absolutely recommend other golfers give the new breed of mini stand bags a try.