A little over a month ago I posed a question to the forum about wedge shafts. First off, a big thank you to all of you who took time to participate in the thread and construct questions that we promised to forward on to a company that is in the forefront of shaft design and construction. Secondly, I would like to thank True Temper for being gracious enough to donate some of their valuable time answering many of our forum members’ questions.
For a while now I have wondered why I put little thought into wedge shafts. I always just assumed that OEM’s knew what they were doing when putting a stock shaft into a wedge. Since THP is all about fittings and optimization, my mind began to wander into the realm of wedge shafts. The most natural question that came to me was, “why am I not playing the same shaft in my wedges as I do in my irons?” This seemed like a logical question to me and come to find out, I was not alone in this line of questioning.
Many forum members submitted questions that surrounded all things wedge shaft and they were forwarded on to the experts at True Temper. Unfortunately, not every question could be answered to True Temper answered the questions they felt would provide the most insight to THP’s forum members.
Without further ado, the selected questions and answers:
1.) From forum member Setho: What is wedge flex?
Some of our OEM partners choose to designate their wedges as “Wedge” flex. These will always be within the S flex category but could be S200, S300 or S400 depending upon their individual product selection. In the case of our new DG Spinner, we designated two flexes…”wedge” and “wedge +”. The “wedge” flex weighs 7 grams less than the “wedge+” flex and is therefore not as stiff. This flex will work well for most players in all applications. However, the stiffer “wedge +” can be used in PW and GW applications where more shaft loading will occur in full shot scenarios.
I also see people with x100’s in their wedges and wonder why they would do that if they are rarely taking full shots. Would that hurt more than help? It seems that you would want the shaft that gave you a) the most feel and b) the best accuracy, and c) the most spin?
Ultimately, we estimate that 80%+ of players are using shafts that are too stiff for them. Few players need to be using X flex shafts in their wedges for the reasons you list…rarely hitting full shots, better feel/responsiveness, etc. However, there could be some cases where the strength of the player or quicker transition/tempo would necessitate an X flex wedge shaft.
2.) From forum member Craftylefty: I currently play the DG x100 all the way through my set. I thought it would be more consistent to keep everything the same but the clubhead through the set. Am I missing out because of it? I honestly have no idea.
We would strongly suggest that you consider reshafting with S300 or S400 in the wedges. There is a high percentage of players that play X100 in their irons on tour using S400 in their wedges for improved feel and control. Remember, rarely should you be taking a full swing with a gap, sand or lob wedge. Therefore the shaft loading (bending) is significantly reduced compared to your 3-PW. If you’re looking to add spin to the equation, you should really give the DG Spinner a try. The feel will be unlike anything you’ve felt before and you’ll see an increase in spin to help attack the pins.
3.) From forum member 9-Iron Man: I have the DG Spinners in my wedges. I opted for the regular wedge flex in all three (50/54/58). True Temper says that PW and AW/GW should be shafted with the wedge+ Spinner shafts and wedge in SW and LW. Why is this? Is it because of swing speed ? Would a player notice any difference between the two? Would a player like myself benefit from the + shaft in my 50* or will there be little difference?
To expand on our answer in #1, the “wedge” and “wedge +” shafts are identical in design (exact diameters and step pattern). They are different in weight only…7 grams to be exact (124 grams v. 131 grams pre-trimmed weight). The 131 gram “wedge +” version is stiffer by virtue of the additional 7 grams of material spread across the 37” length. Therefore, we suggest it only for the PW and GW applications where shaft loading is increased through more “full swing” scenarios. Most players will be perfectly fine to put the “wedge” flex in all of their wedges.
4.) From forum member Dr. Teeth: I was fitted for X100 in my irons, but I opted to go with S300 for my wedges. (I had a 56 that had an X100 in it and I found that I faded the ball on full shots). What would be the benefit of hitting a wedge plus shaft over an S300, or X100 for that matter?
The “wedge +” flex is only a designation of DG Spinner. I commend your decision to place S300 in your wedges although you’re an X100 guy. As you can see from the answers above, there is a clear recommendation being made to go softer across the board…certainly in the wedges. You may want to consider the DG Spinner to find some additional rpm above your S300.
5.) From forum member Hawk: How does a wedge shaft relate to spin and how does spin relate to launch? Are the two mutually exclusive? In other words, does a shaft have to launch the ball lower to create more spin?
Great question. First off, let’s set the playing field. The shaft certainly plays a role in the launch/spin scenario, but not nearly to the level that the head does. For instance, if you were launching it too low with your driver and playing an 8 degree, the first modification a qualified fitter should suggest would be to change to a 9.5 or higher degree driver. There would be instant improvement. The shaft is where the “fine tuning” comes into the equation…to “tweak” launch conditions and offset the spin impact of the launch increase. In the case of wedges, the highly publicized groove change produced a permanent performance modification to irons and wedges. The impact was two-fold…wedges would now produce less spin AND higher launch because the ball would have a tendency to roll up the face (by virtue of the grooves not grabbing the ball as effectively as they had with the old groove). Our task was to find a way to offset these changes by finding a way to reduce the launch and increase the spin rates. The recessed section of DG Spinner produces a distinct shaft bending pattern that essentially brings the head into the ball at a sharper angle causing less roll up the face producing both lower launch and increased spin.
I want to thank True Temper for their time and assistance in answering our forum members’ questions. To me, it’s this type of customer service and consumer engagement that sets True Temper apart from the other industry leaders in wedge shafts. The fact that our questions and ponderings can be answered from a true industry expert is phenomenal.
Please join me in thanking True Temper for their insight and participation with THP. We have questions and they have answers, but more importantly, they took the time to engage us and welcome our questions.