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Critical Golf: Unbiased Golf Equipment Reviews

Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2

Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2

Score

79

Grade

C+

If you can get over the brand “Caddy Daddy” and “Constrictor 2” model name (then again, that does sound pretty manly), you’ll find your bag surrounded by 1800d nylon fabric, with additional padding at the top of the case to protect your clubheads, compression straps to keep your clubs secure, and rubber and padded nylon handles at the top, center and bottom of the bag. Lockable main zippers provide a little more security as well. The Constrictor 2 is designed like most soft travel bags, with a pair of in-line skate wheels for pulling the bag through airports and rental car lots. We have come to realize that we much prefer 4 and 6-wheeled soft and hardside bags that have the ability to move the bag upright or supported at an angle while traveling. We’ve found that holding up and pulling a 50-pound bag through the airport is getting less and less fun with each trip we take – this effectively requires one to lift between 20 and 25 pounds of weight while pulling the bag. Not fun for long walks through the parking lot or terminal!

Caddy Daddy markets reinforced stress points, heavy duty curb rails, and riveted handles for extra strength, but if you stack the Caddy Daddy up side-by-side to higher-end soft travel bags such as the Club Glove Last Bag, you will quickly see the differences. With the less expensive Constrictor 2, you won’t get the level of reinforcement throughout the bag as you will see in others, and in addition you’ll be limited to a 1-year warranty, versus a “lifetime” limited warranty in the case of the Club Glove Last Bag. While we had high hopes for finding a reasonably priced travel bag to recommend, the Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2 wound up with a three inch tear straight through the nylon at the base of the bag from its first trip, which was a new low among travel bags tested. The bonus? We had the chance to test out their limited warranty.

SCORE
79
GRADE
C+
Design/Construction
75
Travel Impressions
84
Value
81

With the Constrictor 2 there is a straightforward tradeoff: dollars for durability. Don’t get us wrong, the Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2 offers a very attractive price point for a much better bag than the least expensive throwaway travel bags you’ll find online. But given the durability issues we had from the start, we would recommend more heavy-duty alternatives that just might save you more dollars in the long run.

Retail price: $109.99
Amazon.com: Check price now

Note we didn’t review the Caddy Daddy Cooler to store your cold ones during the round, so we will leave that up to our readers.


75/ C

DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION

Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2
Click for more images

Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2 features include:

  • an 1800d nylon exterior (which is the same you’ll find in some of the competing soft travel bags, such as the PING Folding Travel Cover)
  • two restraining straps with buckles on the outside to provide support, including one around the clubheads and one around the center of the bag (which had a disappointingly short strap for buckling up once you have added extra gear)
  • two inline skate wheels at the base of the bag
  • four total handles: one at the top of the bag, two located in the middle of the bag that velcro together, and one at the base of the bag
  • reasonably thick 3/4″ padding around the top 18″ of the bag to provide clubhead protection
  • two rails on the bottom of the bag that unfortunately don’t offer the same level of protection for your clubs as the bags that have a full “sled” at the bottom. Instead the Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2 tries to supplement the rails with lightweight plastic that is slipped into a sleeve on the bottom inside of the bag.
  • 50″ x 13″ x 15″ size that can accommodate normal club lengths
  • an address slot/window stitched to the bag, and a removable luggage tag
  • color schemes of black with navy highlight color scheme, our choice, with a second option of black with grey

Many readers will wonder what the Caddy Daddy doesn’t have that more expensive bags do. Features lacking in the Constrictor 2 include interior straps to further secure the bag, a third external strap toward the base of the bag, heavier-duty buckles, zippers and rivets, and reinforced stress points.

Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2
Click to enlarge

In terms of durability, as mentioned, the Caddy Daddy failed on its first flight, leaving us with a three inch tear at the front edge at the base of the bag (see picture at right) and wear at the base corners. We also found two areas on the main zipper already starting to separate, and the interior of the bag also showed some wear, which may have been due to the lack of interior straps to secure the bag. Maybe it was bad luck, maybe it was Southwest Airlines, but either way, we haven’t experienced issues this quickly with other bags. Even with all the “standard” travel bag features, the lack of durability alone is enough to drag down our scoring.

As an accessory for the Caddy Daddy we do recommend (as we do with all soft travel bags) springing for a bit of extra support from the Club Glove Stiff Arm, which will add vertical strength to the bag. The Stiff Arm isn’t perfect, as it is designed only to assist with direct blows to the top or bottom of the bag. If someone runs over your bag on your driveway or the tarmac, you’re still going to be SOL.


84/ B

TRAVEL IMPRESSIONS

As a softsided bag with no structure to it, the Caddy Daddy Constrictor 2 falls victim to the same main travel issue as its closest competitors, which is that you have to lift the top of the bag while pulling it through the airport. As we get older (and perhaps wiser?), we find that our shoulders and arms take more of a beating from this than they need to, and we prefer bags with either four or six wheels that can stand upright (soft or hardsided), or those with extendable legs to take the weight off your arms and shoulders.

The Caddy Daddy did, however, weigh in at only 8.2 pounds as tested (it’s marketed at 9 pounds), making it lighter than most of the competitive golf travel bags in our tests and allowing you to slip in a bit more gear and still stay under the 50 pound airline-imposed bag weight limit. The main zipper can be locked, and the Constrictor 2 also provides two oversized lockable pockets (20″ x 8″ and a maximum of 4″ depth) on either side of the exterior of the bag for storing extra gear. These pockets both easily handle a pair of shoes, plus extra belongings, and are some of the largest pockets we have seen on travel bags, which is great for all of the extra clothes we pack up. The only negative is that these pockets are only accessible from the outside of the bag.

There is also a 12″ x 6″ pocket, which has much less depth and cannot be locked, thus perhaps more suited for your smelly socks. This smaller outer pocket has little depth and zips on top of the larger pocket on the right side of the bag. The main purpose seems to be that it can zip off to allow for personalized stitching for your bag.


81/ B-

COST/VALUE

A retail price of just over $100 makes the Constrictor 2 one of the most attractively priced travel bags we have tested, and for those considering one of the “cheap” travel bags on Amazon (some of which are priced under $50, but with awful construction, limited padding, and poor storage), we beg you to at least consider stepping up to the Constrictor 2. However, it’s tough to give the bag high marks for value when we experienced durability issues from the get-go. The 1-year limited warranty allowed us to exchange the bag and start all over again.

While the Caddy Daddy offers a relatively low entry point to the world of golf travel bags, the gripes we have with 2-wheeled bags in general, combined with the durability issues and desire for a couple of additional security straps, lead us to recommend considering other alternatives. Sure the Caddy Daddy is cheap, but if you have to replace it after just a few years, or deal with replacements under warranty, it will be more trouble than it is worth.

Retail price: $109.99
Amazon.com: Check price now

If you are looking for other Caddy Daddy bag options, all which have relatively attractive pricing in their respective markets, you may with to consider the Caddy Daddy Phoenix, which is a slightly larger softwided travel bag that has additional padding, internal straps, and a self-standing design. It does, however, have the same 1800d nylon construction.