Review Wilson Staff Launch Pad Irons and Metal Woods

JB

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New lineup from Wilson coming soon and we have the full details on the home page at the link below. We sent out sets to multiple forum members for real world testing and review and they will be in here as well.

 

OITW

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Wilson Staff Launch Pad Hybrid Irons

I received this set as a shoulder tap to be reviewed in conjunction with the Cleveland HB Launcher Turbo irons.

Hybrid Iron Background:

I played the OG HB Launcher in the long irons last year, the thought was to use them as a UT replacement. Wasn’t the best fit for me, I think it was the shaft though. Performance was there in terms of forgiveness, but I wasn’t seeing the desired launch.

Spec/Build Information:

Shaft: KBS Tour 80 Stiff

Flex: R300

I’ve been gaming these on and off for the past month and a half. I’ve put them up against the Turbos and my Cobra F9 irons.

Spec wise these are pretty much the same as the Turbos, they are playing about a ¼ short compared to the Turbos. They are the same length as the Cobra F9 irons, however the F9 irons are a degree and half strong in the Cobra long irons and ½ a degree strong in the mid irons.

Looks:

They look like hybrids, they aren’t too bulky, how Wilson designed the shell in the back and with the color scheme, it isn’t huge and doesn’t bother me. If you’ve followed some of my past posts, specifically when it comes to fairways, you know I prefer a matte crown on my fairways/drivers/hybrids. I do have to give that edge to the Cleveland Turbos.

Blade length is fine, it doesn’t appear too long nor is it too short with a huge cavity in the back. Comparable to most irons out there.

The Sole – Sole is a smaller footprint than the Turbo, to be honest, I don’t really think much about it which is a good thing.

F04EDC65-7082-4025-B087-5A994C0374C2.jpeg

Progressive sizing – I really like how the looks with the progressive sizes – they’re not all super thick and full hybrid sizes like the 4i is, they get progressively smaller as you get into the wedges. It’s definitely pleasing to the eye to see scoring clubs, not fully sized like hybrids. Very similar in looks to the Turbos, the Turbos might be a tad bit smaller, but it’s not a clear cut difference. It also might be the matte finish (Turbos) on the back vs the shiny finish (Wilsons)

F24CAB43-0FD3-4597-A730-1FE8D4197665.jpeg9368D163-307F-482E-A87E-3E9AB8863D58.jpegB5D85796-17B3-446C-AF5F-236EF17A8A00.jpegB644078E-0B0F-4FBB-BBFF-EDFC7CD140EC.jpegECA93EFA-753C-4C24-A1B5-447EF7AB2473.jpegBD51B269-27DC-4B91-BF89-07D6D4B2F3D2.jpeg
@donny475 going full send

Face Wear:

The face wear on these is great, no scratches or seeing abnormal/excessive wear early.

0B94B30A-FE9D-427F-8474-CBBB3112469A.jpeg
 
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obedt

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Great to see W/S branching out into this area. Looks like there is some serious competition in this hybrid iron arena.

That FY looks REAL interesting.
 

OITW

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Range/Data Session:

Took the LPs out to the range with the Turbos and the F9s

All three irons just get the ball up stupid easily, no need to step into anything or really push it, the tech is there and these go, go far and go high.

I took 4 swings with each 6i and recorded it on the SC200 - the Turbo had the lowest Swing Speed, but still decent carry distance.

I also took a few cuts with the 8i and recorded the data - consistent, a shorter carry, but I was getting the 8i pretty high, I'd say it was wedge height - just to reiterate wind was a factor, but shouldn't affect the LM numbers.

The LPs compared very similarly to Turbos – both launched high (wind definitely was an influence on ball flight) both were accurate and on target for me.

The F9 is a great iron, however it is a distance iron and it competes very well and in some cases has more distance than the other two irons, it does lack the feel that the other two irons provide.

C64DB188-C541-47C9-AFB6-BCB25EB7A015.jpegC426EF8E-4AC9-4117-B959-9B1C65CB4E86.jpegA5A08E4F-8159-41EC-A77A-287038FD198B.jpeg29DCC5C4-BC23-4A92-A3DF-79B73A95BADA.jpegB400F48D-515C-4A09-B8F4-3A70A46B3B48.jpeg0C24056B-93C6-4E32-8D65-8A8B39B85E14.jpeg3FF86C10-1F7D-4156-B657-CF78E5752D53.jpeg05E95895-9FE4-4B00-A985-CCBF19B7D9C0.jpeg10D671F2-51FD-431B-8C9C-61DAF681FCBF.jpegA3F23ECD-52AB-47C2-9A88-1C692CC1A2A3.jpegC8DDDCAC-A1EA-4473-9A85-E5AE5AC2A84F.jpegA3777BA7-F461-45F2-8E94-5AE65EA654E3.jpegE3B89854-38B9-4F0C-84D9-8BF0D23B3BDB.jpegEB1E9CC4-1382-4B8C-A7A4-244A0772559F.jpeg7582C4E1-9E0A-4E38-A74D-918D4C47326C.jpegC1DBD424-7137-4C93-BD5C-EEDF3CC178FB.jpeg
 
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OITW

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On Course:

A87805DC-A784-4348-A929-C8FC8F801699.jpeg

Off the tee - these are great, they perform just like hybrids would, very forgiving and accurate. With these in play, I’m very confident to hit the fairway and keep the ball in the play.

Even in the colder months, I have no issue getting the 4i and the 5i a pretty good distance where I can have a mid iron to wedge into a green.

4420245C-3509-401E-B98D-01964814BDA5.jpegA5B349BE-82D1-42E0-B9A4-D7ACDB42E3E9.jpeg

Approach Shots – Typical irons for me when hitting approach shots into greens. I’ve some great shots, close with birdie opportunities, however, I’m not throwing darts with these giving me kick in putts. I can also say the same thing about the Turbos and the F9s, though I would say the two hybrid iron sets are more accurate. I do hit my fairshare of greens with these though, I definitely don’t want to discount that.

87C0AD88-809E-4BC7-A7F2-D6C95C76E5B5.jpeg9BDC77C3-3F47-4EF7-B1D4-061DDEA67DE9.jpegEFBDE382-0B3F-40F2-B200-4A524264BFE8.jpeg
A5BA68FA-60AA-4E4D-9C16-AA95BAE15B53.jpegF0A11754-7803-4AD1-877C-23F3AD7AFF4A.jpeg

Turf Interaction – Is solid, I can’t say great, as this time of year makes it really tough to gauge turf interaction from the fairways and rough, but I’m not seeing excessive digging, if anything I would say the heads would be more beneficial for someone who has a steeper swing. I don’t take big chunks of turf with these and my miss is definitely more thin shots.

Greenside, touch shots – With past iron sets, I would use my 8/9/PW a lot around the green, nice little chip/pitch shots. When I moved to the F9 with the set GW this year, the irons just seemed to have a hotter face and was never comfortable (still not comfortable) using them in that capacity all year.

With these irons (and the Turbos) I feel like I have added a shot/weapon to my arsenal, in the last month I’ve seen much more success with either set, than I did with the F9 irons. I would have to give the edge to the Turbos, I like the feel a bit better and I think the shorter shafts are more comfortable for me (it’s all mental I know)

I don’t use them greenside from the rough, just tight lies. I did try a couple of shots messing around and it was not a success.

I would have to say tee shots, for me are the strength of the irons. These irons compared to the Turbos are interchangeable.

The Irons broken into six components:

Forgiveness:

These are packed full of forgiveness. Across the entire face, I’m still seeing great distance. The forgiveness compares favorably to both the Turbos and the F9s

Feel:

I can feel the well struck, pured shots with these. I can also feel on the face where I miss. I don’t get the harsh feedback that you get with a players irons. Great feeling irons for the SGI category.

Workability:

I’ve mentioned with the Turbos, that I think the softer flex shaft really has the hooks come into play. This having a Stiff flex in the shaft, I haven’t had a really bad day missing left. I also can hit draws and fades with these irons which is a good thing. I would rate the workability as a

Accuracy:

For an SGI club, accuracy off the tee is fantastic, smaller fairways and larger fairways, they all play about the same for me. Into greens is a different story, hitting greens aren’t the issue and distance isn’t the issue it’s proximity to the hole, I have similar issues with the F9 and Turbos.

Distance:

In colder temperatures I wasn't seeing much distance loss from what I'm used to in warm weather or in Florida. Still not as long (it’s definitely ball dependent) as being in the warm weather, but not changing course strategy with these. I’d say even in the colder temps I’m good with PW 140 to 4i 210. Not as long as the F9s but same distance and comparable to the Turbos.

One thing to add - I have not hit a Flyer/overpured a shot with these yet - I have had a quite a few with the F9s this year that have done that, but these have been solid so far.

Sound:

Sound is a bit higher pitched than the Turbos and F9s – perimeter shots specifically on the toe have a higher sounding Ting to it. Not a deal breaker, but was a departure from what I’m used to.

Cons:

Sound on mishits could be improved, back of the irons with the shiny finish takes/shows more chatter than other irons.

Overall:

Performance is great, these are fun, definitely more fun that I expected them to be. They definitely make the game easier, fairways and greens are boring.
 
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SquirrelyDave

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I like a lot of what I’m seeing there. The price point is killer, and they went all in on some pretty serious tech. The irons won’t be for everyone but i think they look just fine.
 

mpeterson

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Got a chance to play out of @Jaymo37 and @OITW's bags and take a few swings with these. At address, I think I like the shape of these better than the HB Turbos, which are probably their closest comparison. The toe isn't as squared off, and I think these retain more of their "iron" look.

And that's kind of interesting to me, because when I was comparing the two, these felt more on the hybrid side of the hybrid-iron spectrum. Sound was a little more hollow, less solid, though I wouldn't say bad. Just something that took getting used to - shots on the toe were especially noticeable, though I saw the same thing in the i500, which was a much smaller iron. Still, I could tell exactly where I made contact with the ball, so no difference other than less of a sting in the hands than my irons there. They are absolute rocket launchers too - with consistent distance.

On the flip side, the HB Launchers had a more solid feel to them, and I felt a bit more comfortable playing those on pitch shots and touch shots around agreen. All that said I love playing hybrids, they're probably my favorite club in the bag, so a club that leans that way is A-OK to me. I'd play these clubs without hesitation. I think some of the issues I had stemmed from the shaft and length as compared to the Launchers.
 

Jaymo37

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Hoping to get all my thoughts posted at lunch and after work tonight, but these have been a pleasant surprise to say the least.
 

J.B. Cobb III

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Great review!
 

Molten

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I’ve had the Launch Pad irons in hand for the last three weeks and I’ll have all my thoughts and images up as soon as I can get to my personal computer today to post what I wrote up.

This was my first time with hybrid irons and my eyes were opened to the appeal and had more than one “ohhhhhhh, I get it” moments.
 

DataDude

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New lineup from Wilson coming soon and we have the full details on the home page at the link below. We sent out sets to multiple forum members for real world testing and review and they will be in here as well.

Great write up @JB
That Fybrid looks interesting. I bet it's an easy launcher.
 

greg19

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Thanks for the great and informative review @OITW! As an older golfer will a slower swing speed I’ve thought of giving these a try to help me add some yards. Your review makes it even more tempting!
 

OITW

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Great review!
Any questions? I know you were excited about the release
I’ve had the Launch Pad irons in hand for the last three weeks and I’ll have all my thoughts and images up as soon as I can get to my personal computer today to post what I wrote up.

This was my first time with hybrid irons and my eyes were opened to the appeal and had more than one “ohhhhhhh, I get it” moments.
Very curious to see how your thoughts compare vs the F9 irons
 

OITW

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Thanks for the great and informative review @OITW! As an older golfer will a slower swing speed I’ve thought of giving these a try to help me add some yards. Your review makes it even more tempting!
Sounds like we need to get a round in soon, cape courses were phenomenal this past weekend and your thoughts on these would be great
 

greg19

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Sounds like we need to get a round in soon, cape courses were phenomenal this past weekend and your thoughts on these would be great
Sounds like a plan to me! We played down in Falmouth on Sunday and the course there was in great shape. I’m not a afraid to drive a bit to get some winter golf in!
 

Molten

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Very curious to see how your thoughts compare vs the F9 irons
I’ll be able to expound more on this later but the comparison between the F9 and the Launch Pads is a complicated. Plenty of confidence in both sets of long irons but I struggled mentally with the LP short irons (I’m not sure if I was trying to come in steeper because of the sole or what was up). The LP shaft (Tour 80) sent the ball high, as expected, so it was a challenge on the very windy day on the course with both.

The sound isn’t even close between the two.

Ive got some numbers head to head from the launch monitor that I can dig up (assuming i labeled them right ?).
 

Iceman!

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The FY just screams "Hit me"
 

JohnSinVA

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Any questions? I know you were excited about the release
It looks, based on the numbers you posted, that the Turbos are a little better at retaining ball speed on misses than the LP. Is that a fair assessment?
 

Shakey

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The OG Launch Pad...
 

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mpeterson

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It looks, based on the numbers you posted, that the Turbos are a little better at retaining ball speed on misses than the LP. Is that a fair assessment?
I dont wan’t to put words in OITW’s mouth think part of that might be setup. The HB are a good bit shorter in shaft length the way their set up and, at it might just be slightly better contact overall.

On course I hit some absolutely gross shots with these that went most of the expected distance.
 

Jman

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Gonna be real.

Those are a disappointing direction looks wise for me given all the progress Wilson has made in recent years. I really and truly expected more aesthetically, SGI lineup or not.

The return of the Fybrid is something they could have really taken and run with, but, instead it just looks....well....meh.

Obviously just my take, but man given all the teasers and such I expected more.
 

OITW

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It looks, based on the numbers you posted, that the Turbos are a little better at retaining ball speed on misses than the LP. Is that a fair assessment?
No, that was earlier on in the comparison - both sets retain the ball speed across the face pretty well. I think as far as hybrid irons go, these both do a great job of that.
 

ddec

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I'm actually a bit let down with this release. To me, it is just very underwhelming in more than just looks. Sounds like they are solid performers based on the early feedback, but man they just do absolutely nothing for me. I'm a guy who remembers the "glory days" of the fybrid, hell I still have one in my basement, but they brought it back in this? That is just kind of a shame IMO. Maybe some more in-hand photos will change my mind, but these look cheap and that is a stigma that has stuck with Wilson(right or wrong).
 

Jman

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I'm actually a bit let down with this release. To me, it is just very underwhelming in more than just looks. Sounds like they are solid performers based on the early feedback, but man they just do absolutely nothing for me. I'm a guy who remembers the "glory days" of the fybrid, hell I still have one in my basement, but they brought it back in this? That is just kind of a shame IMO. Maybe some more in-hand photos will change my mind, but these look cheap and that is a stigma that has stuck with Wilson(right or wrong).
I think similarly. For me, aesthetics were always a big thing you could count on W/S getting right, but now I do think that Cleveland and Tour Edge have a distinct advantage there if this is the direction of things.

I too am enjoying the performance thoughts, but it is still a very unexpected overall package IMPO.
 

J.B. Cobb III

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@OITW 1- How do you think this set fits in with the D7 lineup? Aren't they targeted at the same demographic? 2- Why should the average golfer look at these over the Cleveland Turbo or Tour Edge HL4?
I'm with @Jman here! Looks wise, it's a miss for me. The Launch Pad series is kind of bland. W/S recycled the name from DvD. I would love to see more harmony and cohesion with the Wilson/Staff line ups. Launch Pad, D7, C300, V6, D200, F5 Tour, Cortex, Triton, etc! But, perfomance is key and if it performs...everything else doesn't matter!
 

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