After a two year cycle, Cleveland Golf is bringing to market the newest iteration of their wildly successful RTX blade and CB wedges, the RTX-3. While the RTX name lives on, this release is much more than just a refresh of the design, rather there is a considerable amount of external and internal technology that has been imparted through extensive R&D focused squarely on improving the overall playability and performance since the last release. As such, it is of little wonder that we are also seeing easily the most modernized look yet from the company, though the legendary Cleveland script remains firmly implanted on both designs, all other manners of identification have undergone a significant metamorphosis, and it certainly stands out.
There need not be any fear from the RTX faithful however, as Cleveland is still hammering home what they do best, giving the golfer what they want. The RTX-3 are not only available in two separate designs with the blade and cavity back, but each of those are available in a plethora of loft, bounce, sole, and finish choices. It can be easily argued that when it comes to wedges, no one does options like Cleveland Golf.
Within the RTX-3 lineup, Cleveland Golf is again offering two different designs to better provide options that will fit golfers across the spectrum:
• RTX-3 Blade: The traditional style bladed wedge design which possesses a smaller footprint for maximized shot shaping ability and control for players who demand more out of their wedges. Cleveland is emphasizing a significant improvement in dispersion through the different technologies imparted into the design compared to not only prior RTX iterations, but other wedges on the market as well.
• RTX-3 Cavity Back: A slightly larger wedge compared to its bladed sibling, the cavity back design intends to offer more forgiveness while keeping the same feel as its bladed counterpart. The cavity here has been re-worked from past iterations and material has been moved in order to shift the CG more to the center of the club since most amateurs tend to miss towards the toe-side of their wedges. The same technology implemented in the bladed RTX-3 is in play here along with a higher MOI and TPU insert to increase accuracy, playability, and feel.
• Feel Balancing Tech
Through their R&D, Cleveland Golf realized that most common impact pattern for golfers with their wedges is from the center of the face out, with a particularly significant trend of being on or near the toe when they miss. However, the weighting and balance of the “traditional” wedge design is more heel-side and as such plays an adverse role in dispersion, particularly for amateurs. To combat this, Cleveland has moved the CG of both the blade and cavity back RTX-3 to the center of the wedge designs by shortening the hosel as well as creating a micro-cavity inside which allowed for the weight saved to be redistributed. This shift of the CG not only decreases the vibration through impact, but it also increases the stability and feel, while also producing what Cleveland considers to be the tightest overall dispersion of any wedge they have designed.
Cleveland is not at all new to the use of the V-Sole type grind on their wedges through what was once known as their “Dynamic Sole Grind”, but with the RTX-3 we see a much more refined and versatile V shape sole. The intent here is more bounce on the leading edge of the club to help the club through the turf while still offering relief in the trailing portion of the sole for shot versatility. However, rather than simply creating one sole for all, Cleveland has maintained their belief in options and meshed three different V-Sole designs into their three different bounce (dot) options.
o V-LG – The most narrow and lowest bounce offering intent on maximizing versatility. According to Cleveland this option is best for shallow attack angles as well as tight conditions.
o V-MG – A middle of the road bounce offering which will work with the largest portion of players and conditions.
o V-FG – The widest sole option with the most bounce, intent on maximizing playability and forgiveness through soft conditions as well as for those with steep angles of attack.
• Improved Rotex Face Milling
With the RTX-3 wedges the Rotex face has been improved through the use of deeper and narrower grooves, optimization of the laser milling between them, and loft-specific micro milling. The lower lofted wedges (46° to 52°) have a straighter milling as they are the lofts most used for full swings, while the higher lofts (54° to 64°) are actually angled down and towards the heel of the wedge to optimize the spin produced with open face shots.
o Tour Satin – Classic satin finish that reduces glare while providing a clean and classic look. This finish is available on the blade and cavity back RTX-3’s.
o Black Satin – An all new process makes this finish the most durable black finish Cleveland has ever produced. This finish is available only on the blade RTX-3.
o Tour Raw – A return of a favorite, the Tour Raw oil quenched finish is designed to wear and rust over time leaving behind a very unique look and feel. This finish is available only on the blade RTX-3.
Additionally, extensive fitting for the new Cleveland Golf RTX-3 Wedges will be available world-wide both via in-cart fittings as well as use of their “Wedge Analyzer” powered by SwingByte which can properly recommend both wedge design and sole grind in just a few swings. The new RTX-3 wedges have an MAP of $129 and will be available in stores in September.