The mention of persimmon wood in today's fishing report caught my eye; before steel, and then titanium became the material of choice, when the subject of "woods" in golf came up, the first word was persimmon. While some low-end clubs were made with laminated maple, etc, the finest drivers, etc were made from persimmon - and they were truly handsome clubs. Something was definitely lost with the switch to metal. I'm not sure of the exact steps that were done to fashion a persimmon clubhead, but I think they used a solid block, and then put it on a lathe to form the shape, so I don't think it had to be split at any time. It is certainly a very tough wood, so I guess if one had to make something smaller, like a reel seat, it would tend to split into fragments.