Where are we on strong lofts?

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RatFink

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I decided to waste some time last Friday at a golf shop and see what's out there for when I do decide to replace my current set of irons and hit the 2016 Apex Pro, MP18, MP18MMC and Wilson V6.

All were lovely, but the MP18MMC was the clear winner it seemed, in terms of distance and launchability. It had roughly 10 yards over the other clubs so I was thinking it was a slam dunk, until I looked into the specs and noticed the 7i is 2 degrees stronger than the others. Doing some quick googling and youtubing I noticed the same tale across various videos where the reviewers were seeing the same results.

So my question is: how important is the loft, really?

When I replace my current shovels of irons, I don't want power bats, I want something that is more true to a beautiful player's iron. That being said, should I be concerned about a 'true to form' loft vs. a stronger loft? Or how does this really get factored into fittings, having never gone through a formal one (but it's on my list of things to do)?
 

Et Tu Brute?

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You should learn your distances with each club in the set, no matter what numbers are on the soles. The numbers on the soles matter not at all.
 

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My opinion is that it depends. If the launch conditions are right, then who cares.

BUT, most of the companies are getting you distance by significantly lowering spin by means of lowering loft and CG placement. So if the landing angle isn’t steep enough combined with too low of spin it could be difficult to hold greens.
 

RatFink

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Fair points.
With my current set of shovel/power bats a 7-iron is roughly a 160-170y club for me at unknown spin (haven't had them on a launch monitor in a while).

With the clubs I was demoing, they were 140-150y or with the MMCs 150-160y and spinning 6500-6800rpm so they were stopping quickly. I understand it would be unreasonable for me to go from power bats to players irons and expect similar distances with the same number on the sole of the club so that would be a factor of re-learning where balls land. But I guess if I was to be pig headed and decide I ONLY want to look at players irons (aesthetically) then it might make sense to get a set that is slightly stronger lofted such as the MMC to get me as much distance as possible.
 

aljaklaw

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do you like how they look in the bag? do you like how they look at address? do they fit your performance needs? if yes to all, get them!
 

DataDude

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My opinion is that when you have 150 to play you better pull your 150 club out and be confident it will stop where it lands. That may or may not be a 7 iron. That 150 club may be a 7 iron in 1 set, a 6 iron in another, and an 8 iron in another. Launch monitors are great to test drivers on because we want one thing, the longest and straightest driver. Applying that same logic to a giant staff bag full of different 7 irons is not a good way to pick your next set of irons out.
 

radiman

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Agree with others here. Doesn't matter what is stamped on the bottom of the club. Just cover your gaps.
 

Canadan

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I decided to waste some time last Friday at a golf shop and see what's out there for when I do decide to replace my current set of irons and hit the 2016 Apex Pro, MP18, MP18MMC and Wilson V6.

All were lovely, but the MP18MMC was the clear winner it seemed, in terms of distance and launchability. It had roughly 10 yards over the other clubs so I was thinking it was a slam dunk, until I looked into the specs and noticed the 7i is 2 degrees stronger than the others. Doing some quick googling and youtubing I noticed the same tale across various videos where the reviewers were seeing the same results.

So my question is: how important is the loft, really?

When I replace my current shovels of irons, I don't want power bats, I want something that is more true to a beautiful player's iron. That being said, should I be concerned about a 'true to form' loft vs. a stronger loft? Or how does this really get factored into fittings, having never gone through a formal one (but it's on my list of things to do)?
If your peak height and spin are in line with the results you're looking for, I wouldn't sweat it for a second.

Heck, I am looking at tinkering with some blades and am absolutely going to bend them strong because my dynamic loft alters them at contact. Getting my spin and apex down are paramount to on course success.
 

braddman19

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If it produces a shot shape that you are happy with, I don't see what the big issue is.

If I get more yardage out of a club, and can still hold a green like I want, I am all for it.

Play what you want to play, what you hit well, the clubs you like..... and don't get hung up on the loft.
 

olperfesser

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Distance isn't the object with irons. The object of an iron is hitting the green and holding the ball on and getting close to the pin. Once you learn the distances of your irons, you want them consistent. Changing to another set that has stronger lofts throws that off. What used to be a 150 club becomes a 160 club, and suddenly you are between clubs more often. I want to be able to pull an iron and know how far it will go, I don't need to have it go further. That is not a selling point to me. Going straighter and being constantly the same distance is what is important.
 

tahoebum

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You won't be able to buy "traditional lofts" anyway. Even the "players" irons are much stronger lofted than when I started playing the game. A PW used to be about 49*. My Srixon Z765 PW, certainly one of the weaker lofted PW's available from Cleveland/Srixon, is 46*. For me, it's all about gaps and how consistently a set of irons can deliver that distance.
 
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RatFink

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Distance isn't the object with irons. The object of an iron is hitting the green and holding the ball on and getting close to the pin. Once you learn the distances of your irons, you want them consistent. Changing to another set that has stronger lofts throws that off. What used to be a 150 club becomes a 160 club, and suddenly you are between clubs more often. I want to be able to pull an iron and know how far it will go, I don't need to have it go further. That is not a selling point to me. Going straighter and being constantly the same distance is what is important.
This is such a sensible response, but goes against so much of the marketing out there and I love it.
I remember when the strong lofted irons first started taking over with whatever taylor made's offering was that claimed 20+ yards or something and it made no sense to me.

I guess the thing for me is, if I start shaving a whole club's distance off of each of them, that makes a much larger gap between my driver and my long iron that would need to be filled in.
 

mpeterson

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Distance isn't the object with irons. The object of an iron is hitting the green and holding the ball on and getting close to the pin. Once you learn the distances of your irons, you want them consistent. Changing to another set that has stronger lofts throws that off. What used to be a 150 club becomes a 160 club, and suddenly you are between clubs more often. I want to be able to pull an iron and know how far it will go, I don't need to have it go further. That is not a selling point to me. Going straighter and being constantly the same distance is what is important.
My gaps are roughly the same as they have been between clubs as they were 15 years ago, despite the lofts being completely different. I don't understand how a different loft setup causes you to be between clubs more often unless the gaps get bigger between clubs, which I haven't seen.
 

pattyboy21

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I'd love to trade a bit of my high iron flight for more distance. I'm super scared to go bending my Callaway x-forged irons for stronger lofts though...
 

Et Tu Brute?

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The only way I can imagine evaluating a (potential) new iron purchase is to hit shots of a variety of distances without regard for the number on the sole and see whether the new club gives you the trajectory, control, consistency, spin and shot shape you want.

If you know how you hit a 160-yard iron shot with your current clubs, find the club in the new set that goes 160 and see if you can hit better 160-yard shots with it. Repeat for various distances. That's the only thing that matters.
 

Kay-Dee

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Where are we on strong lofts?

You also have to keep in mind that besides stronger lofts, today’s new irons are designed to spin less. Which means they are also designed to launch higher so that the ball “drops” at a steeper angle to hold greens. So while covering the gaps is important, it’s also important to know if your swing launches the ball high enough to stop. It might be in your best interest to custom order your clubs with 1 or 2 degrees less loft (what I did with my Ping G400 irons).
 

zbeekner4

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For such a large financial investment, I’d go get on a launch monitor. It’s crucially important to know whether an iron can stop on a green or not - specifically the decent angle and spin. The loft is essentially irrelevant.


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JayB

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I guess the thing for me is, if I start shaving a whole club's distance off of each of them, that makes a much larger gap between my driver and my long iron that would need to be filled in.
That isn't a problem either though - there are so many great options for driving irons, hybrids and metal woods it is easy to fill in the gaps. And realistically, you can tolerate a bigger gaps at the top end of the bag because you get away from hitting it to a distance and start hitting to a range.

I've long since gotten over what the club says on the bottom. As many others have said, fill the gaps and that is all that matters....
 

PapaJohick

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I used to care... now I don’t give a care. I just need my irons between my hybrid and wedges to gap appropriate. Don’t care what the number says or what loft goes with that number.


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Badger_Golfer

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It is what it is. With any club, its all about hitting to a certain number. Stronger lofts are largely marketing, although some would argue that with the higher launch of modern clubheads and shafts, you need strong lofts to keep the ball down but IMO thats nonsense. When you look at how shafts have gotten longer and lofts have gotten stronger over time, its all about more distance. Thats not a bad thing though, it just is what it is.
I remember a few weeks ago, at the Charles Schwab Invitaton, they commented how you dont see anyone hitting 1 irons anymore and one of the commentators said how players still hit 1-irons, they simply now have a 3 stamped on the bottom of them.
 

DG_1234

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I decided to waste some time last Friday at a golf shop and see what's out there for when I do decide to replace my current set of irons and hit the 2016 Apex Pro, MP18, MP18MMC and Wilson V6.

All were lovely, but the MP18MMC was the clear winner it seemed, in terms of distance and launchability. It had roughly 10 yards over the other clubs so I was thinking it was a slam dunk, until I looked into the specs and noticed the 7i is 2 degrees stronger than the others. Doing some quick googling and youtubing I noticed the same tale across various videos where the reviewers were seeing the same results.

So my question is: how important is the loft, really?

When I replace my current shovels of irons, I don't want power bats, I want something that is more true to a beautiful player's iron. That being said, should I be concerned about a 'true to form' loft vs. a stronger loft? Or how does this really get factored into fittings, having never gone through a formal one (but it's on my list of things to do)?
Today's strong lofted irons are nearly two clubs longer than the irons of 10 years ago. So, a player who is accustomed to playing a 7-iron from 150 yards with his older irons , with his new set may be swinging a 9-iron.
 

MonroeBob1955

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The newer stronger lofts in and among itself is not relevant. Find your distances as others have said. It can have a significant affect on the rest of your bag. In my case, the result was regapping my wedges on the lower end and the hybrids on the upper end.


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Phil75070

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It is what it is. With any club, its all about hitting to a certain number. Stronger lofts are largely marketing, although some would argue that with the higher launch of modern clubheads and shafts, you need strong lofts to keep the ball down but IMO thats nonsense. When you look at how shafts have gotten longer and lofts have gotten stronger over time, its all about more distance. Thats not a bad thing though, it just is what it is.
I remember a few weeks ago, at the Charles Schwab Invitaton, they commented how you dont see anyone hitting 1 irons anymore and one of the commentators said how players still hit 1-irons, they simply now have a 3 stamped on the bottom of them.
In my opinion it is not “nonsense”! With weight being more precisely located lower in the irons making them easier to hit, more forgiving and higher launching, it isn’t necessarily trying to “keep the ball down” but to hit a certain window of launch angle, trajectory and spin which, when optimized lead to more distance. The lofts on my ‘19 Apex are stronger than the CF16s but I hit them both higher and longer.


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blugold

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-somebody who complains about lofts on irons
 

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I don't like them because I need the extra spin.
 

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