Wedges & Spin - A Conversation

Hawk

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Bounce seems like it would make a big difference to me as well. If spin is generated by pinching the ball between the turf and club, then a low bounce, no bounce club would generate more spin, is this correct?
There is no 'pinching' between the turf and the club. You want to hit down on the ball and have 'ball first' contact, and it may help to envision 'pinching', but it does not actually occur. The ball travels up the face of the wedge almost instantaneously.
 

SW

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Personally I think it has alot to do with where the weight is distributed around the head.
This is my line of thought as well. That being said if the CG16's with there cavity allowing for more weight to be moved around to other areas should in theory be spin machines vs a comparable blade wedge with conforming grooves.

How the grooves are angled can certainly play a part in imparting additional spin as well.

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CharlieMoy

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AFAIK The grooves have to be perfectly perpendicular to the face.
This is my line of thought as well. That being said if the CG16's with there cavity allowing for more weight to be moved around to other areas should in theory be spin machines vs a comparable blade wedge with conforming grooves.

How the grooves are angled can certainly play a part in imparting additional spin as well.

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SW

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AFAIK The grooves have to be perfectly perpendicular to the face.
Sorry I wasn't clear at all, I was referring to face milling. Such as clevelands laser milling vs the circular pattern on a vokey. Two conversations at once got me mixed up there.

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c_ault

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I may have skimmed a little bit (I think I read all the posts but not sure). Since the milling or micro-grooves technically cannot affect spin (they'd be illegal clubs if they did) and you kept everything else equal (groove design/quality [quality of the grooves may be a key], shaft, ball, etc.) then the wedges themselves won't really impart any significant spin change. One thing that will make a wedge spin better for any golfer is if they had their wedges properly fitted to them. Then if the golfer makes consistent swings impacting/compressing the ball properly they will see more spin consistently. Also pertaining to the swing would be the effective (playable [cough, cough :D]) loft. If I remember correctly from Pelz's Short Game Bible, if there is more than 56* of loft at impact the ball will spin less. So if at impact you're playing a 56* SW but impact the ball slightly open, say creating a 58* loft at impact (ok, that may be a little more than slightly) you're going to get less spin.

I'm thinking that wedge design properly fitted would be more for allowing a level of golfer to groove a consistent swing and as that level increases the design will allow more manipulation of the wedge to create different levels of spin. So, the quality wedges are basically the same they just may fit a golfer better.

(that enough babbling? :smile:)
 

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so JB are you insinuating that after your conversation with your clubmaker - that all wedges should be equal? Since they all are going to use the maximum allowance in each aspect? Or are you saying you too notice that some spin more than others?

TBH - i have only hit the TM XFT and CG15's. I cant really tell a difference in spin between the two. im comfortable with my cg15's so thats why im gaming them. Well see what i think after the demo day however, then i can hit abunch of stuff
 

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so JB are you insinuating that after your conversation with your clubmaker - that all wedges should be equal? Since they all are going to use the maximum allowance in each aspect? Or are you saying you too notice that some spin more than others?
Im not insinuating anything. I will say that in our testing last year, the results were very similar to the short grass testing that was put up in a link here. The goal here was to get to the bottom of why people believe certain wedges spin more than others. If the grooves, head shape, etc are all the same what is making them spin more. It appears that when a robot test was done with actual results, there were very very slight differences, but for the most part, that became true in that all of the wedges had very similar spin. So if the club head is similar, in robot testing it showed no differences, what are you guys finding that says one spins more.
 

MikeF

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My take on this is, that if the wedges are all the same then the amount of spin imparted is down to the player, ball and weather conditions.
 

the_paulo

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Can I rep a whole thread? :D Good discussion, and my head now hurts.

I'm firmly in the camp of 'you'll only notice if your wedge doesn't spin, due to old grooves or rubbish technique'. If it spins, it spins and I don't think I'm skillful enough to know when I've hit 2 full wedges EXACTLY the same to compare.

Seems a bit like the putter thing, when we talk about 'feel'. Sound and confidence will play a part.
 

Aries0321

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I may have skimmed a little bit (I think I read all the posts but not sure). Since the milling or micro-grooves technically cannot affect spin (they'd be illegal clubs if they did) and you kept everything else equal (groove design/quality [quality of the grooves may be a key], shaft, ball, etc.) then the wedges themselves won't really impart any significant spin change. One thing that will make a wedge spin better for any golfer is if they had their wedges properly fitted to them. Then if the golfer makes consistent swings impacting/compressing the ball properly they will see more spin consistently. Also pertaining to the swing would be the effective (playable [cough, cough :D]) loft. If I remember correctly from Pelz's Short Game Bible, if there is more than 56* of loft at impact the ball will spin less. So if at impact you're playing a 56* SW but impact the ball slightly open, say creating a 58* loft at impact (ok, that may be a little more than slightly) you're going to get less spin.


(that enough babbling? :smile:)

Admittedly not knowing specifically as I've never read through the technical aspects of the rule change, but how could this be true, meaning how could it be illegal, if companies have specifically said they have added the milling as a way around the groove rule

From Cleveland Golf regarding CG16 Wedges, "Game changing Tour-Zip Grooves and Laser Milling Technology are also featured for maximum spin."

The way I understand the limited amount I've read on the rule is the rule deals with the grooves themselves and not the general club face. What causes spin is a downward blow wherein the ball rolls up the face of the club before launching off the club face. The more the ball rolls up the face; the more spin imparted to the ball. It's been basically agreed, I think, a wedge with more grooves should spin the ball more. If the face is smooth except for the grooves, a wedge with 15 grooves has 16 points of possible contact with a ball. A wedge with 21 has possible points of contact. If a company laser-mills, no matter how small the incision, three lines between each groove of a 15 groove wedge, they have in effect created 58 points of possible contact with a ball.

I'm thinking that wedge design properly fitted would be more for allowing a level of golfer to groove a consistent swing and as that level increases the design will allow more manipulation of the wedge to create different levels of spin. So, the quality wedges are basically the same they just may fit a golfer better.
 

c_ault

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Admittedly not knowing specifically as I've never read through the technical aspects of the rule change, but how could this be true, meaning how could it be illegal, if companies have specifically said they have added the milling as a way around the groove rule

From Cleveland Golf regarding CG16 Wedges, "Game changing Tour-Zip Grooves and Laser Milling Technology are also featured for maximum spin."

The way I understand the limited amount I've read on the rule is the rule deals with the grooves themselves and not the general club face. What causes spin is a downward blow wherein the ball rolls up the face of the club before launching off the club face. The more the ball rolls up the face; the more spin imparted to the ball. It's been basically agreed, I think, a wedge with more grooves should spin the ball more. If the face is smooth except for the grooves, a wedge with 15 grooves has 16 points of possible contact with a ball. A wedge with 21 has possible points of contact. If a company laser-mills, no matter how small the incision, three lines between each groove of a 15 groove wedge, they have in effect created 58 points of possible contact with a ball.

I'm thinking that wedge design properly fitted would be more for allowing a level of golfer to groove a consistent swing and as that level increases the design will allow more manipulation of the wedge to create different levels of spin. So, the quality wedges are basically the same they just may fit a golfer better.
I'm just going by this:
5. Club Face

a. General

The face of the club must be hard and rigid and must not impart significantly more or less spin to the ball than a standard steel face (some exceptions may be made for putters). Except for such markings listed below, the club face must be smooth and must not have any degree of concavity.


I probably could have worded my post better.
 

Hanks

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Nope. Exhibit A...the Mizuno MPT-11 wedge

The MP T-11™ wedges feature a CNC milled face along with acclaimed QUAD CUT GROOVE technology, which enables Mizuno to precisely control the width, depth, draft angle and shoulder radius of each groove to deliver maximum spin control and ball-stopping ability in all playing conditions

AFAIK The grooves have to be perfectly perpendicular to the face.
 

Aries0321

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Drilling down further to the CG16 page is the following: "Using the precision accuracy of a laser, each face features four perfectly calibrated texture lines milled between each groove exactly to the conforming roughness limit. This surface roughness application optimizes ball-to-face friction and maximizes spin within the Rules of Golf." Taking Cleveland's word, I'll say there is a rule on roughness of wedge face. And with 4 lines between each groove, they have created 72 points of possible contact with a ball.

Not saying, I'm falling for Cleveland's marketing of why they spin the ball more than other manufacturer offerings. But it's a scientific fact more surface contact creates more spin. Consider a knuckle ball versus a split finger faster ball. A knuckle ball has only the tips of the index, middle and ring fingers on the ball (and the thumb, but not required for comparison). A split finger has the entire index and middle fingers on the ball.
 

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Drilling down further to the CG16 page is the following: "Using the precision accuracy of a laser, each face features four perfectly calibrated texture lines milled between each groove exactly to the conforming roughness limit. This surface roughness application optimizes ball-to-face friction and maximizes spin within the Rules of Golf." Taking Cleveland's word, I'll say there is a rule on roughness of wedge face. And with 4 lines between each groove, they have created 72 points of possible contact with a ball.

Not saying, I'm falling for Cleveland's marketing of why they spin the ball more than other manufacturer offerings. But it's a scientific fact more surface contact creates more spin. Consider a knuckle ball versus a split finger faster ball. A knuckle ball has only the tips of the index, middle and ring fingers on the ball (and the thumb, but not required for comparison). A split finger has the entire index and middle fingers on the ball.
Wait, do you think that if you hit a ball with no grooves it would be a knuckle ball?
Im not saying you are right or wrong here, but the grooves are there for multiple reasons and smaller or no grooves does not make a knuckle ball appear.
 

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No, not saying that all. My analogy was just regarding surface contact. Not being a great golfer, I'm speaking specifically from a scientific viewpoint. What first imparts reverse spin on a ball is the downward blow. So a completely smooth face would impart spin. But if the face is completely smooth, even though as a ball moves up the face multiple points on the ball will touch the face, no more spin will be imparted because the ball can not impart spin on itself. In fact, as a ball moves up a smooth face, the spin of the ball when it leaves the face should be decreased from the spin imparted at first contact. If the club has multiple surface points, such a CG16's 72 points, as the downward blow is delivered and the ball moves up the face, each contact point has the potential to grab the ball and impart further spin.

From Mizuno regarding MP T-11, "Forged from 1025E Pure Select mild carbon steel, Mizuno's MP T-11 provides a pure, soft club-head that holds the ball a fraction longer on full pitches. On shorter pitch shots where the ball does not fully compress, CNC milled score-lines between the grooves ensure maximum traction."

All of the companies adding the milling is just science. So going back to my original input, all things being equal (shaft, club head shape, depth/volume of "grooves" and even the material used to make club head), a wedge with more surface points (the extra milled lines) has the potential to spin a ball more.
 

the_paulo

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Anyone remember the wedges with dimpled faces? That throws a spanner in the works of the grooves! :D
 

JB

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All of the companies adding the milling is just science. So going back to my original input, all things being equal (shaft, club head shape, depth/volume of "grooves" and even the material used to make club head), a wedge with more surface points (the extra milled lines) has the potential to spin a ball more.
Here is where we differ. "Ensuring maximum traction" and creating more spin are different things. Grooves will assist in creating more spin, however adding surface texture may not. Perfect example of that is shown in that test done by a robot earlier in the thread. If surface texture such as face millings created more spin each time, the only wedges that would be at the top of spin charts are those that have them and that is just not the case.
 

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There is one more factor not mentioned yet. If I'm at a demo day and I hand a Jaws wedge to the next guy and say, "Man, this club spins the ball more than any other wedge I've ever hit. The Vokey's just don't bite as well as the MP-T11 or CG-16 but the Callaway Jaws truly has the Mac Daddy of all grooves. Tell me what you think."

Research would say it would be impossible for the next guy to have an unbiased opinion about that club before he makes contact, no matter how hard he tries to not let those comments affect his personal opinion about the club. In fact, marketing research would say that the next guy would even try harder to spin shots with that club if he doesn't notice a significant difference and probably tell me that he agrees with me even if he thinks its the same or worse.
 

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There is one more factor not mentioned yet. If I'm at a demo day and I hand a Jaws wedge to the next guy and say, "Man, this club spins the ball more than any other wedge I've ever hit. The Vokey's just don't bite as well as the MP-T11 or CG-16 but the Callaway Jaws truly has the Mac Daddy of all grooves. Tell me what you think."

Research would say it would be impossible for the next guy to have an unbiased opinion about that club before he makes contact, no matter how hard he tries to not let those comments affect his personal opinion about the club. In fact, marketing research would say that the next guy would even try harder to spin shots with that club if he doesn't notice a significant difference and probably tell me that he agrees with me even if he thinks its the same or worse.
I think that is very true and the reason that marketing is so influential in the world of golf.
 

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Ok, thought about this one a little more this morning in regards to some saying the Jaws wedges spin more than others. Well honestly for me that is not the case, for me those are some of the worst wedges available. They just don't fit me, compare them to another wedge like an xft or my trusty 588 with beat up grooves and I get an improved shot with much better spin on full and partial shots. So perhaps how the actual club fits the player is a factor, of course if we're talking robot testing then my point is moot.
 

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I'm having trouble finding the USGA parameters for testing spin since I'm at work and cannot download some of the studies. I did see that for MOI they use a p-value (level of significance) of 2%. So, if they use that value for testing spin also any wedge with milling/decorations on the face that show a 2% increase in the level of spin are non-conforming. That would mean that if a mill faced wedge adds 20 revolutions per 1000 it technically would be non-conforming and I don't believe that 20 revs per 1000 having that much of an impact on the course.

I have a Pure Spin 56*, the one with the diamond course face, and I never saw any real improvement in it spinning the ball. If there was much improvement it wasn't worth the damage the face does to a ball. Looking at the USGA database the Pure Spin meets the pre-2010 rules of golf. (I'm babbling again aren't I?)
 

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Agreed maximum traction and more spin are different but there is a correlation as more can not be created without more traction if all is equal. Once the only constant factors set are swing (robot) and ball, and all other variables are different, all of the other variables can, and most likely will, contribute to differing spins.

To get max volume, each company can use a different method to get the max volume. For example, 10 grooves cut 2 mm deep & 4 mm wide or 10 grooves cut 4 mm deep and 2 mm wide or 8 grooves 2 mm deep and 5 mm wide or 15 grooves cut 2 mm wide and 2.66 wide, etc. Each company will used various combinations of material used to create club head, shaft material, shaft length, shaft flex, club head weighting, etc. available to them to determine their best observed spin as compared to the current offerings of other companies. And thus state they spin more than the rest. All other companies will do something very similar. But each and every company with their marketing is comparing this vintage to everyone else's vintage from last year.

It's not until the unbiased 3rd party comes in with a constant swing and ball, do we learn who's current vintage taste best or if all of the current year vintages taste the same.
 

cg13

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Im not insinuating anything. I will say that in our testing last year, the results were very similar to the short grass testing that was put up in a link here. The goal here was to get to the bottom of why people believe certain wedges spin more than others. If the grooves, head shape, etc are all the same what is making them spin more. It appears that when a robot test was done with actual results, there were very very slight differences, but for the most part, that became true in that all of the wedges had very similar spin. So if the club head is similar, in robot testing it showed no differences, what are you guys finding that says one spins more.
ah gotcha. i mean it makes sense? that they all will spin about the same - since they are all going to design them under the max allowowed tolerances.
its like nascar (cant believe im quoting nascar) - with the restrictor plates - all the cars run the same; its just the driver at that point.

Same thing here i think (not an expert by any sense of the word) it comes down to how comfortable the different wedges are, whether you are a picker or digger, and your stroke ultimately. But as far as the head themselves - it makes perfect sense they should all be the same.

* i did wonder about the cg16 compared to the cg15... the slight cavity - would that make it just a larger sweetspot? or give you better distance on mishits? or would the blade type cg15 spin more bc well design? i know little of what head design influences...
 

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