Although it’s growing like crazy, I still think of the disc golf community as one big family. Because of that I turn down product review requests when there is a good chance that my evaluation won’t be favorable. If I publish a review, readers need to be able to trust that it’s an honest assessment. And, quite frankly, I’d rather skip a review rather than possibly hurt another disc golf small business.
When I was contacted by Aaron at Reaper Disc Supply, I shared that disclaimer with him for a couple of reasons: The whole skull, bones, and death motif isn’t really my thing, and with few exceptions I could care less about the imagery that decorate the discs I throw. (Reaper sells shirts, hoodies, tanks and socks with their original art as well as a great selection of discs.) To his credit, Aaron quickly replied that if I didn’t like his stuff he wanted me to say so.
Fair enough. I admired the confidence and agreed to do it, and not just because the company owner understood my position. I know that plenty of disc golfers don’t share my artistic tastes, and it seems clear that I’m in the minority in my preference for bright, solid-colored discs (although it’s hard to argue with my practical logic).
One more bit of background that I think is worth mentioning: I’m really into disc golf apparel. So much so that I’ve created numerous designs myself, as an officer of the DeLaveaga Disc Golf Club (membership shirts) and as a disc golf business owner. When I produced shirts they had to meet my own personal criteria in selecting shirts I’d wear myself. I have to like the design, but comfort and fit matter just as much. Over the years I’ve accumulated enough disc golf shirts that didn’t make my “wear worthy” cut to make five t-shirt quilts. I didn’t want to just toss ’em, but never wore them.
All of this is to say I think my take on t-shirts is, if nothing else, fairly informed and discerning.
Rather than just send me a number of random garments, Aaron asked me to check out the apparel section of his website and pick a few things I liked. Given the grim reaper theme I didn’t think I would find much, but I was wrong! The Arrow Wolf design on white reminded me of my days going to hardcore punk shows (turns out this is something Aaron and I have in common).
Big Disc Energy got me to laugh, and I instantly looked forward to others seeing it on the course and sharing the play on words joke. It has even inspired me to write a song of the same name that describes disc golfers who are convinced they’re the next Drew Gibson.
I even found myself loving one of the designs featuring reaper himself. Respect the Course shares a message every true disc golf lover should support. Maybe I can get Reaper Disc Supply to sponsor a hole at Black Mouse DGC, which sits on school grounds, when it reopens. We’ve had some issues with littering.
When the package arrived, I spotted a cool sticker that had me smiling before I even opened the box. It had a reaper image and a warning to Handle with Care. Nice! It reminded me that most disc golf small businesses share my passion for the sport and the people who love it.
The garments themselves were top quality. I couldn’t spot a single printing imperfection on any of them. The colors were all vibrant and the images vivid and clear, exactly as represented on the website. The t-shirts are Premium Bella Canvas, 100 percent soft ring spun cotton for the solid colors and a 52 cotton/48 polyester blend for the heather tees. The hoodies are a medium weight 50/50 cotton-polyester blend.
After several wash cycles everything still looks and fits great. The shirts fit as I expected, the 100 percent cotton is indeed soft, and the heather shirts, with the 52/48 blend, has that combination of softness and stretch that I particularly love to wear while throwing.
I mentioned that Reaper also sells discs. Until recently their inventory included “whatever we could get, given the shortages everywhere,” according to Aaron. That just changed! He also now sells popular molds with his artwork on them. They are all limited edition and hand numbered. The plan is to release at least one per month until they’re able to order bigger quantities. The first one, an R-pro Pig with the “Chained Hog” image, sold out quickly, but I bet they do another run of those as that’s a slam dunk disc/image combo. They just released a Star Destroyer with the Reaper Gorilla art. If you like it, better act fast. I think the black-on-white looks sharp.
In summary, I’ve found Reaper Disc Supply to be great to deal with, and the product seems to be top quality. Check out their stuff. You’ll probably find something you like, and even if you don’t there’s always the death metal disc golfer in your life, right?