Rattling Chains enters disc manufacturing market, sponsors first pro

By Steve Hill — Rattling Chains staff

Much like Irish rock band The Cranberries asked with its 1993 debut album, “Everybody else is doing it, so why can’t we?”

Rattling Chains is proud to announce that it is jumping into the disc manufacturing market, with a line of six discs to be released this Friday, April 5.

Making its own line of discs has been a goal of Rattling Chains since day one, according to founder P.J. Harmer, but it took a bit longer than expected.

Big Kev, a lumberjack from Upstate New York, is set to be the first pro for Rattling Chains.

Big Kev, a lumberjack from Upstate New York, is set to be the first pro for Rattling Chains.

“This is the culmination of a long and arduous process, but we are thrilled with the results,” Harmer said. “We are confident that our readers, and disc golfers the world over, will feel the same.”

Harmer initially began developing the discs with founding partner Darren Dolezel before the Rattling Chains blog began, he said. But with the market already being flooded with manufacturers, Harmer decided to build the brand name before investing in the plastic.

“As soon as I first picked up a disc, I knew I wanted to improve on the concept,” Harmer said. “Ease of use, grip, accuracy, consistency – all of these qualities are covered with the Rattling Chains line.”

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Rattling Chains named top disc golf blog

Thank you.

There’s not much more else I can say.

Late Monday night, we were informed that Rattling Chains was named the top disc golf blog by DiscGolfStation.com. In the growing age of digital media and blogging, this is quite an honor.

harmer_sigWe were contacted by Disc Golf Station a week ago, letting us know we were being considered. I answered the two questions I was asked and sent things back.

Then we got the news.

I’m obviously stoked — for the site, for those who contribute, but most of all for those who have supported us for the past 10 months. The fan base this site has built might not be as large as some other disc golf sites, but we have a loyal and vocal group who will tell it like it is.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

These fans will tell us when we’ve done well, tell us when we’ve messed up, when we’ve misspelled something or when we got something right. And I like that. They send us ideas and thoughts and it helps us grow as a site.

Clint Henderson, of Disc Golf Station, said they sent e-mails to about 20 disc golf blogs, and considered many others in the initial process. It’s nice to know how we stacked up against so many other blogs.

When I started Rattling Chains in 2012, the goal was simple: create a disc golf blog that covers the sport like no other place — with journalistic integrity, entertaining and original content, and consistency. Add all that together, and our hope was to help grow the sport through the written word as we dive into stories others aren’t telling.

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Wysocki to team up with Rattling Chains

By P.J. Harmer — Rattling Chains staff

Disc golf has gone through quite an evolution.

Even to those of us who are newer to the sport, there’s a history to be celebrated. From the early days of Frisbee to discovering disc golf and “Steady” Ed Headrick, the history is much longer than one might think. There are tournaments and historic courses. Players such as “The Champ” Ken Climo are known for all they’ve done in the sport.

Saying the name Dave Dunipace to many will quickly help turn a disc golf conversation to Innova.

Then there’s the more current names in the game — players such as Dave Feldberg, Nate Doss, Eric McCabe and Avery Jenkins — all recent world champions.

Then there are the young guns.

These are the players who might make people take notice as the next group of fun and exciting professional disc golfers coming through the system.

When discussing that next bunch of players, the conversation often begins with Ricky Wysocki, a 19-year-old out of North Carolina who is a member of Innova’s Star team.

And for somebody who isn’t even old enough to legally purchase alcohol, Wysocki is already making a name for himself in the disc golf world. In fact, he’s won more than $20,000 playing the game this year as a full-time touring pro.

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Rattling Chains Photo of the Week: March 31

Image by Kevin Morrow; at the Hawk Hollow Open (October 15, 2011).

The photo is of Tom Edwards, throwing a Wraith with a chicken-wing throw off the No. 1 tee. Hawk Hollow No. 1 is a 429-foot open shot from a highly elevated hilltop with an out-of-bounds creek 10 feet behind the basket.

Tom threw the wraith low and hard, in a high crosswind. The disc flew straight to the pin and landed about five feet from the basket for an easy birdie.

Kevin says:

My process for this image was in my head and I had to practice it a lot in my back yard since I would not be looking through the viewfinder.

I used a Nikon D2x with a 10.5mm lens. I mounted the camera on a 4-foot scissors tripod with a remote trigger. The camera was set at 5000th shutter and f4.5. I wanted to get as much depth of field as I could with a shutter speed high enough to stop the disc in flight. I placed the camera about 6 feet in front of the end of the tee. I covered the camera with a towel to hide it and muffle the sound a little.

When a group of players arrived, I would fire off a couple of frames to make sure the noise of the camera would not distract. I had to stand off to the side so I would not be in the frame or in the view of the player. When the player began his throw I would press the remote trigger and began firing off frames until the disc was down range. I averaged about 30-40 frames per player. Out of the 30 or so players that I shot this way, only about 10 had the disc in the frame coming off the throw. Of those I was only able to get two that were good. Tom’s throw was the reason behind this image looking so good. His chicken-wing style threw the disc down the middle of the frame combined with my timing on his throw to get a great disc golf image.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Nikon D2X
  • Shutter speed: 1/5000
  • F-stop: F/4.5
  • ISO: 400

Why we chose to use this photo:

If you take photos and appreciate photos — especially sports action photography — there are images that make you drop your jaw and scream “Holy crap!” This shot is one of those.

Knowing how tough it is to capture the “shot,” makes this even better. Sports photography is extremely tough and it’s a business where sometimes you don’t have time to set up and really get what you want. But Kevin captured something here that shows the beauty of how awesome a shot can be when you are given enough time.

This shot works in so many ways — editorial, feature, personal — showing how amazing it is. The fish-eye lens really works well here and the colors are dynamic. The orange disc with the blue sky in the background is really wild. The burning sun in the corner of the shot is simply awesome. But it’s the little things that really sold us, too. The farm all the way in the background, with the silo standing tall and proud.

Overall, what a great image! Thanks for sharing, Kevin!

Have some great images you want to share with the Rattling Chains readers? Please e-mail pj [at] rattlingchains.com with the subject “Photo of the Week.” Please note that we can’t guarantee all images will be used. Send as many as you would like as if the photos are top notch, we’ll use more than one from you!

When sending in images, please remember to send the story about the photo, the location and any technical information possible! The story can be as long or as short as you like, but please make sure you give some details!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Avery Jenkins to blog with RattlingChains.com

The staff of Rattling Chains is proud to announce that 2009 Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) World Champion Avery Jenkins will be blogging with RattlingChains.com during the 2012 season.

Avery Jenkins will blog with RattlingChains.com for the 2012 season. (photo courtesy of Avery Jenkins)

Jenkins will bring his views, thoughts and reactions to being on the road this year. It will be a good view of life on the road from the eyes of one of the top pros in the world.

Jenkins, as of Feb. 14, is a 1027 rated played by the PDGA. In 2011, he played in 24 PDGA sanctioned tournaments (plus the National Tour series). Of those 24 tournaments, Jenkins had one victory, five runner-up finishes and one third-place finish.

Jenkins, one of the most well-known and easily approachable professionals on the tour, won the 2009 World Championship and is a member of the 12-player Innova Star team. The 2012 season marks his 13th on tour.

According to the PDGA site and Jenkins’ player profile, he has won 42 tournaments since 2001.

His first blog post, a wrap of his 2011 season, will appear Friday (March 9) on RattlingChains.com.

If you have any comments, questions, thoughts, ideas or anything else, feel free to e-mail me and the crew at: pj [at] rattlingchains.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Welcome to RattlingChains.com!

That sound is beautiful ... and this we're hoping this blog hears it often!

Hello and welcome to Rattling Chains, a blog that will be about everything disc golf!

Over the past few months, I’ve searched for a disc golf blog to read and it seems that many blogs were sporadic or weren’t fully disc golf based. There are plenty of forums out there for disc golf, but I couldn’t find a blog that would give me the type of stories and things I had hoped were out there in a blog.

The burning question here is whether or not the disc golf community and the sport in general is ready for a full-time blog on the sport?

After all, it’s played outside and not near the computer.

I hope so.

I found a bunch of disc golf blogs and sent the links to some friends, seeing what they thought and if they thought it would be worth going forth with a project like this.

The many disc golf blogs we visited included ones that were based more on certain stores, players, courses or brands. Though some we visited were updated on a regular basis, many of them were short or didn’t provide content to make us want to go back.

Some photos are nice, but if I just wanted photos, I could search disc golf on Flickr.

And it’s also nice to see what kind of new products stores are getting, but if said store is 500 miles from me, it won’t be easy for me to drive down and have a peek.

Then there’s the National Tour.

If you haven’t seen any NT events, the players are amazing. For this sport to grow, the NT has to take off because that’s where the real exposure comes from.

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