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  1. 30 points
    Ping G410 Plus Driver - Stage 1 Review - jlukes Well it has been almost 2 whole years since I participated in official MGS forum testing and I have to admit, it feels great to be back in the fold! I have previously tested the Sun Mountain 3.5LS Stand Bag (which I still use), Evnroll ER2 putter (which I am taking to my grave with me), and Mizuno JPX 900 Tour irons (the only reason I am not still gaming these is that through fitness and lessons I increased my swing speed to the point where I needed to change shafts). What you should notice is that I do not apply to test everything and anything, and when I do apply to test something, it is a product that I am sincerely interested in doing a thorough long-term review for. I am going to use some of the background from previous forum reviews because a lot of that information hasn’t changed! My name is Joe and I am from Central NJ. I have been playing golf for about 23 years (since I was 12) and I am about a 4.1 handicap at the moment. I started hitting balls when I was much younger - my grandfather cut down an old 9 iron and 5 wood and gave them to me so I could hit balls in my backyard. I remember my first 9 holes being when I was about 11 years old - I shot 63 with my dad. I started playing in County tournaments when I was about 13 years old and played varsity golf in High School. My first job when I was at the local driving range/mini golf, and all through High School I worked at golf course taking care of the carts, running bags, and eventually became the starter. I have always enjoyed being around the game of golf in any capacity and I have found that it is truly a game for life. My son is just over 2 and he is already addicted to the game. I hope that he continues to see what a fun game this is and it becomes something we can bond over for years to come. When it comes to my golf game, I would say I have quite a few strengths. I am a long hitter (Carry my driver > 270 yards), I have an okay wedge game, and I am a good putter. Time is my enemy when it comes to golf; not being able to practice and play as much as I’d like (more than once a week or so) prevents me from being consistent. I have rounds where I am pounding it off the tee, but I can’t hit a GIR, and then I have rounds where I am a little wonky off the tee, but my short game saves me. Everything finally came together for me in November 2016 when I shot a personal best of -1 71, beating my previous best of +2 74. I am the type of golfer that can be extremely competitive, but I also love fun, no-pressure rounds with my buddies. A lot of the guys I golf with are not as good as me, but I do not care in the least. I enjoy playing with all skill levels and I have no problem giving advice and helping someone with their game if asked (and only if asked). I enjoy walking the course as much as possible and nothing frustrates me more than long rounds. I see no reason why an average round should take over 4 hours, no matter what the golfers’ skill levels are. If you want to know a bit more about my swing, I have a swing overhaul thread I have been chronicling here: It has been an interesting spring as I work to keep the momentum up from my winter lesson programs and I will update that thread with updates on my swing changes as the season goes on. But for the sake of this review, you should know that my driver swing speed is around 113-116 MPH and I play a bit of a draw. I have an upwards angle of attack and my miss is primarily a hook. Here is a video of my driver swing from the end of February For me, driver is my weapon. I play aggressive off the tee because if there is anything that modern analytics and “strokes gained” has taught us, it is that distance is king and that taking advantage of my ability to hit it long is key to me scoring low. I pull driver every opportunity I have. I am no more accurate with my fairway wood or hybrid, so there is no reason for me to sacrifice distance by laying up off the tee unless a hole absolutely calls for a lay up. I try to get on or close to all Par 5s in two, and I try to get myself as close as possible on all Par 4s so that I can be hitting a wedge into the green if the yardage dictates. I wasn’t always a great driver of the ball. I used to have quite a negative attack angle which resulted in low launch and high spin. No amount of head and shaft changes (much to my dismay) could correct a bad attack angle, so in 2014 I went through a swing change and learned to hit up on my driver. Once I got a positive angle of attack locked in, I noticed I gained 15+ yards of carry on my drives! I have been through quite a few drivers since high school - some were great, others were mistakes (due to lack of knowledge about fitting and purchasing on a whim) TaylorMade 320 TaylorMade r5 TaylorMade r11 TaylorMade RBZ Tour Cobra Amp Cell Callaway Big Bertha Alpha (fitted) Cobra Bio Cell+ Srixon 545 TaylorMade M1 (fitted) TaylorMade M2 (2017) (fitted) Cobra F8+ (fitted) Titleist TS2 (fitted) When the Ping 410 Plus testing was unveiled, I knew it was a testing that I wanted to put my name in the hat for. Ping received such outstanding reviews on their G400 line and I knew that that the G410 had to be something special in order to follow the G400. With that being said, I have never gamed a Ping club before. I do have a few old Ping putters, but I never really even given an extensive look to Ping Metalwoods and Irons. Thankfully, I was selected for this great testing opportunity and I get to see what Ping is all about! There are a number of selling points/claims that I will be keeping an eye on throughout testing: Turbulators - do they really increase swing speed? Adjustability - Well the G410 Plus is the most adjustable driver Ping has ever made. Does the weight track (3 fixed positions) actually work? Hosel Adjustment - The G410 Plus features a brand new adjustable hosel from Ping, one that now includes “flat” settings. Do they make a difference? I will put these three elements, as well as the general performance of the G410 Plus to the test over the coming months with the hope of providing the best information for the MGS forum. At the time of being selected for this review, I was gaming a Titleist TS2 driver that I was fit for at Club Champion. I truly believe that fitting is necessary to maximize what a golf club can do for a player. I chose the TS2 during my fitting because it provided me with the best combination of distance and accuracy. The Cobra F9 and Epic Flash SZ were longer, but I had trouble with both distance and lateral dispersions. When I was selected for G410+ testing, I immediately went to my local range, who happens to be a Top 100 Ping fitter, and got a basic fitting for the G410+. Unlike other OEMs, Ping does not offer a wide selection of no-upcharge shaft options. The only two shaft options that were really even under consideration for me were the Evenflow Black and the Ping Tour. However, I know from past fittings that I do not get along with the Evenflow series, so it came down to the Ping Tour. We set up the G410+ in a 9-degree head a Ping Tour 65X shaft and it was clear right away that it was the combination I would submit to Ping for testing. I asked Ping that it play 45" at a D3 swing weight. After I received my club I tested the swing weight and length at a shop and wasn't surprised to see Ping delivered on the nose. During the testing period I will be testing the G410 on the range, on the course, and on launch monitors. While I will be touching on how the club fits me, I will try to remain focused on validating the performance claims from Ping to see if the G410 stacks up with the rest of the drivers on the market. I want my review to be as interactive as possible, so please ask me as many questions on this testing thread and I will attempt to address them all. You won’t have to wait for my Stage 2 to head how things are going. All testers will be actively participating in the thread to provide updates as we go - so we can continue the conversation from day to day. So I mentioned that the TS2 was my gamer going into this testing, but if you are a regular on the forum, you would have noticed that as of this Stage 1 (April 3rd), I have sold my TS2. Without divulging too much right now, my 3 range sessions and 2 rounds were enough for me to know that the G410 Plus was going to be better for me going forward. Furthermore, I believe a good testing write-up should be about the individual club in the test and not about a club going head to head with another club. So does the Ping G410 Plus carry the torch that was lit by the G400 series? Early results are positive and I look forward to sharing the rest of my thoughts with the MGS community as the testing progresses.
  2. 28 points
    Ping G410 Plus Driver Review - Stage 1 Hello to all my fellow MGS’s who visit the Official Product Testers sub forum for some no-nonsense, candid Intel about all the new products that promise to rock our golf world. For me personally, this sub forum and the product reviews written by the staff are what made MyGolfSpy my choice as the golf forum to spend time being part of. First off, a HUGE Thank You to MGS and PING who, along with other manufacturers, make these product testing opportunities possible! What a fantastic way to engage us mere mortal, non-professional golfers, and get feedback from a wide cross-section of players. Seriously, the whole “product tester” thing is crazy cool and I am both honored and excited to have been selected for the Ping G410 Driver testing!! I would also like to give a quick shout out and Thank You to George at Desert Hills GC, Yuma, AZ for offering to do my club fitting. When I told him the situation (being selected by MGS as a product tester), he scheduled me right in so I could get the data back for the order. If you are ever in Yuma, AZ, play a round at Desert Hills and say hi to George and Drew - great guys doing a fantastic job running that course. My Background So, just who is this @fixyurdivot dude? My name is Bill, now 58 and I started golfing about age 7 in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. My Dad absolutely loved the game and introduced me to it. A used set of junior Chi-Chi Rodriguez clubs and a plaid golf bag became the tools of my trade. On Saturdays, myself and a couple of other neighborhood friends would get dropped off at a course where we’d get lessons and then play a small par 3 until late afternoon when someone would pick us up. A year later, I was playing in Junior Golf of America (JGA) and spending Saturday’s chewing up courses around south Florida which included Doral CC, Jackie Gleason Inverrary and Bonaventure GC. I never won a single event but the memories are still with me. I continued to play the game all my life – with bursts of focused effort/interest followed by periods of lackadaisical play. While in the Air Force, I once again got the bug and played quite a bit. I shot my lowest round ever (74) at Mather AFB in Sacramento, CA. Upon getting my Mechanical Engineering degree, my wife and I relocated to WA where I went to work for Boeing. I soon joined a work golf league and played pretty regularly – up until the last 5 or so years of my 30 years with them when travel, workload, and responsibilities made finding time a challenge. In 2016 I opted for early retirement and we moved to the golf capital of the world – Montana! Now I must confess that fly fishing is my #1 passion and I handle a 5 weight much better than a 5i, but golf is a really, really close second and I soon found myself playing the local courses. Combine that with our “snowbird” travel from Nov-Mar here in Yuma, AZ, where I play 3 times a week, and my fly rods are feeling left out. My Golf Game My current game has been pretty steady and I typically shoot in the 80’s. I don’t keep an official handicap, but my math has me at 13 presently. My best official handicap (11) was in the early 90’s. Inconsistency tends to be my nemesis – shooting a 38 on one side and a 47 on the other. Staying clear of “blow-up” holes when having a good round going is also problematic and most often it’s a drive gone OB that was the cause. I would say iron play is my strength as is my chipping. I have a pretty compact swing (not a huge rotation), not a really long hitter, and my typical driver ball flight is straight to slight fade. Another challenge I have is keeping swing tempo down. I’ve really been focusing on that the last couple of years and made BIG improvements, but I still get in trouble with that. I find myself playing courses much smarter these days then years ago. I lay up a bit more rather than trying to reach a par 5 in two – and to be honest, I’m still hitting as far, or further than a decade ago. While I still take aggressive lines off the tee, particularly when I’m driving well, I pay more attention to course conditions when choosing to do so. The “swing for the fence” mentality has slowly changed to a “manage the course” approach. I also find the "swing easy, hit well and far" approach to work for me. What’s in my bag? Well, let’s just get right to it – I still play PingEye 2 irons. I purchased these new in 1988 and have been playing them ever since. Up until last year, I gamed a Callaway Great Big Bertha, 8.5 degree driver. What can I say; I’m German-Irish stubborn, frugal, and not easily hooked by slick marketing and bling. It was only after repeated suggestions (ok, harsh teasing) from friends, that I needed to move into the current century in golf technology, that I purchased my current Callaway Razr-Fit driver in January 2018. I was fitted for the driver and it was among three I tested at the Kartsen Golf Facility at ASU. I immediately saw significant improvement in driving distance, accuracy, and forgiveness – silently asking myself why the hell I did not make that upgrade years earlier. Bill's Antique Clubs: So, this opportunity to test PING's newest driver technology is really interesting in my case. Having just made a logarithmic shift in driver technology, 1990 to 2014 circa, how much more could I possibly be missing? I am hitting the Razr-Fit very well and have confidence with it. The G410 Plus has a steep hill to climb. Will it reduce those OB score killers? Will its selectable “draw/fade” weight option, or 8 position shaft tuning feature allow me to get more draw ball flight? Will it yield faster club head speeds and carry distance? We shall see…. we shall see. First Impressions To be brutally honest, I do not find the G410 to be the sexiest looking driver. In fact, to me, it has a Chevy Truck vs. Lamborghini look to it. More utilitarian than posh, it has a brutish appearance that simply says “I’m ready for work”. The black, matte finish crown has no contrasting sheen areas, no logos, and no ball alignment mark. The “Turbulators” (small raised humps) on the crown are carried over from the G400 for improved aerodynamics – faster club head speed. At 455 cc in size, the G410 looks pretty compact compared to many of its competitors. This is a plus for my taste as I really dislike the “VW Bug on a stick” look. In comparison to my current driver, which is also smaller in look for a 458cc size, the G410 gets a thumbs up. At address, it looks great to my eye. The head cover is of nice quality and well made; sporting the PING logo and G410 designation. The graphics on the Alta CB shaft picks up the red accent on the driver head quite nicely and looks great. The Spec Sheet: The sole of the driver, interestingly enough, provides a bit more glitz with the PING name in bold chrome letters along with the G410 moniker. The leading edge of the sole has a black mirror chrome appearance which transitions into a v-shaped wear area. The forged face is fairly nondescript having a milled finish with contrasting white and light grey groove marks. It's as if PING is saying “it’s not the bling on the outside, but what’s under the hood that really matters”... and I'd be the first to tell you I'm good with that. Ping’s first “moveable weight” system for ball flight control is likewise kept demure with only a thin, red pin stripe following the arc of the weight track along the trailing edge of the head. The weight can be moved from the center “neutral” to either a forward “fade” or rear “draw” position. This feature is the principal difference between the "Plus" and "SFT" - the latter having a fixed periphery weight designed to prevent fade/slice ball strikes. On the surface, these seem a bit "gimmicky" to me. I'm really curious just how this feature will affect ball flight. I still tend to push more than pull shots and would love to see this feature work as advertised. This is something I will be evaluating and reporting on. My Fitting My fitting took place at the range and using the ES14 launch monitor. George had all of the available driver lofts and the four shafts. Both my Callaway GBB and my current Callaway Razr-Fit are 8.5 degree loft. Because I tend to still hit these pretty high, I told George I think the 9 degree would be a good baseline for me - he agreed. I started off warming up with my 6i and he used that to get some initial impressions of my swing and speed. He suggested the Alta CB Red in stiff, standard length. I hit the first half dozen or so shots well, fairly straight, and out just past the 200 yard marker. I then had a couple of hard pulls left. He switched me to the regular stiffness shaft and I again hit the first handful pretty straight and to about the same distance, but with higher trajectory. We then change from the neutral (0) to the (-) position - which changes loft from 9 to 8 degrees. I started seeing a bit more fade and contact marks out towards the toe. We changed back to the stiff shaft and with the same (-) setting. I was back to hitting more to center, with lower trajectory. He felt I could probably make either the regular or stiff work, but that I would likely see more accentuated pull and fade with the regular when I really lean into the shot. I asked about the other available shafts; (Project X Even-Flow, Tour, and Alta Distanza) and he said that except for the Distanza the others were more tailored for a player with much faster swing speed. What's Next OK Mr. G410 you’ve peaked my interest, but this is range time, not game time. What are you bringing to the course? Next up are some initial rounds with the Razr-Fit left at home – providing no emergency backup . Hopefully I can squeeze in another day at the range using their LM for some further fine tuning of the loft/lie and some head to head data against my Razr-Fit. We will then be heading back home to Montana where I have scheduled some time later this spring with a club fitter in Bozeman that has a ForeSight GC Quad launch monitor. My plan is to repeat the comparison with my current driver, but also get ball flight data using game balls. As the snow and frost clears, more rounds will be played ultimately seeing if PING's new “top gun” is better than my $60.00 Razr-Fit. Stay tuned for updates and Stage 2. Thank you so much for taking the time to read!
  3. 27 points
    Continuing the great fun from last year's contest, Wilson Staff is back with MyGolfSpy for the 2019 edition of #SpyStaffSlam. Be sure to watch each Major this year with MyGolfSpy and Wilson Staff for an opportunity to win prizes. First up, The Masters. Just like last year, some BIG prizes are on the line: 1st Prize: CUSTOM SET OF ANY WILSON STAFF IRONS (FG Tour V6, C300, C300 Forged, D7) 2nd Prize: WILSON D7 DRIVER 3rd Prize: DOZEN OF ANY WILSON BALL (Duo Pro/Soft/Soft Spin/Optix, 50 Elite or Zip) How to Enter: The players participating in The Masters have been broken out into 5 Tiers Log in via desktop or mobile to select your players in Tiers 1-4 using the poll provided (won't work in-app) Reply to this thread with your selection for Tier 5 (anyone not in Tiers 1-4) AND your prediction for the winning score (tiebreaker). Watch and comment along with the rest of MGS in THE OFFICIAL MASTERS THREAD Winning entry will be whomever that has the most total prize money won amongst the 5 players Deadline to enter is 5:00am EST on Thursday, April 11, 2019 Use that hashtag! The winners will be announced during the week following The Masters.
  4. 26 points
    Stage 1 First and foremost, thank you MGS Mods for selecting me to be an official tester for the G410 SFT. My name is Tony, I just turned 72 and even though I started playing after I retired, I am obsessed with this game. Prior to retirement I always thought golf was a silly game – after all, how hard could it be to get that LITTLE white ball into that BIG hole. Numerous times on the way home we would pass several fairways at our Club’s golf course and on those cold, or rainy days we would invariably see someone out there playing. My son and I would laugh and talk about those crazy guys out there – what could they be doing or thinking, playing golf in the cold or rain! And then it happened for some unknown reason my wife and I decided to start playing golf. It took one game for me to catch the bug and become obsessed with the game! We’re fortunate to live adjacent to a combined Marina and Golf Club with an Arthur Hills 18-hole Links course in northwest Ohio. It is a picturesque course adjacent to Lake Erie, with strong headwinds and it is also a qualifying course for the U.S.Open. These past few years have been a long journey. After being fit for G20’s, I took lessons from the head pro which was interesting to say the least, as he was telling me to do several things at once. It reminded me of that Einstein story of taking up golf where he threw 5 balls back at the instructor and said catch, the instructor responded I can’t do that – yes exactly! With those lessons in the back of my mind I went off to the driving range. The irons weren’t too bad, but my drives had a beautiful slice that from an aerial view would have made a fishing hook proud. Enter instructor 2 at a Muni. We worked on a lot of things, but he always focused on Position, Grip and Alignment. Several lessons later: the driver had become more of a fade with a too frequent slice, the irons were ok, and the chipping was a big improvement (due to lots of practice in the backyard). At this point my index is still in the 30’s because when the driver is working, the irons aren’t and vice versa. Exit this instructor as he decided to move to South Carolina. I found a new instructor, who immediately recognized a couple of issues and I started working on the improvements, including spine angle and a stronger grip. Now it’s a consistent draw. Not so bad since most of our penalty areas (aka water hazards) are on the left (remember I’m a lefty). In the meantime, my driver evolved into a GBB with an Aldilla SR flex shaft. With lots of work at the range, reading and playing as much as possible, my index dropped last summer to a 22 and I did break 90. Oh, and as a side note I was an Official Tester for W/S C300’s – thank you Mods! This past Fall, we got to play at our course until late November – my index did bump up slightly but only because there’s something about shivering in cold weather that’s not conducive to golf. Overall game evaluation 1-10 with 10 being best/most consistent Driver = 5 Irons = 7 Wedges = 9 Putter = 6 This past Winter I spent my time reading even more and watching instructional videos and when weather allowed, a few trips to a heated driving range. Since I was working on my swing, I intentionally slowed it down to around 76-80 mph (using my SC200) to focus on accuracy. With the slower SS I was getting a much narrower dispersion. I didn’t pay much attention to distance since it was cold, generally windy and the range was using their “winter” balls. Next step will be working on SS. Then the MGS Official Testing for the G410 SFT happened and I was lucky enough to be selected. My reason for applying was threefold: #1 gain more consistency resulting in a narrower dispersion, #2 distance, and #3 sound. Note: with my G20 I could tell by the sound when I had a mishit. On our course, the first two priorities take the penalty areas out of play for me, along with the potential for higher % GIR’s. First impression: With the GBB and SR flex shaft as background, and a prior fitting with the Ping G and SR shaft (which I didn't buy), I ordered the driver with 10.5* loft and the Alta CB 55 shaft in SR flex which is about 10 grams lighter than the Aldilla. The G410 also came with Tour Velvet grips. I’m a big fan of MCC+4 and with my XL glove size, I decided to order it with the orange option which is their jumbo grip. The driver arrived very quickly, especially given the “less than common” configuration of a lefty head and a SR shaft. The grip initially felt too large – but I did have a pair of FJ rain gloves on when I tried it. Putting one normal golf glove it felt fine. However, at some point I'll replace with the MCC+4. The head is what I expected with a satin finish on top. What was a nice surprise is how good the bottom looks with the red “streaks”. I never noticed that in the stores. It looks so good in the bag – I hate to put the cover over the driver. The head cover, however, is good looking and a nice improvement over previous Ping covers. The one thing that was a slight surprise, but only because I didn’t pay attention to the online description is that the weight on the SFT is fixed. In the scheme of things that’s not a big issue for me. However, if you want a sliding weight, you’ll have to move to the G410 Plus. The connector is easily adjustable, and the instructions are clear and concise. If you happen to lose the instructions – no worries the connector is clearly marked and has eight settings. Of course, the club did come with a wrench, however, I doubt I’ll be adjusting it once it gets set at the Fitter’s. Next steps; Get to a fitter to set the correct loft adjustment. My guess is that it’ll be either set at neutral or .06* configuration. While I’m at the Fitter, I’m bringing my GBB as well to do a “head to head” comparison. It’ll be my Ping vs. Callaway challenge so stay turned for that. Additionally, with 2 lesson certificates that my wife gave me for Christmas – I’m going to use one to further improve my drives. My expectations are that the 410 SFT gets me 7-10 additional yds. plus, a much narrower dispersion and looking for that 5 to move to at least a 7 or 8. . Let the battle of my drivers begin!
  5. 25 points
    And now, your starting lineup for #CobraConnect Challenge 3.... From Georgia, playing the One Lengths: @bardle Playing backwards upside down, from New Zealand: @Nunfa0 Swinging Faster , from Wisconsin: @Bucky CC From Michigan, on the right side of the ball: @palvord Hailing from Kentucky, but not one and done: @robertson153 And there you have it folks. Let's hear it for our five competitors that will battle it out all summer in the gladiator arena. For those that weren't selected, stay tuned to the official thread for chances to win even bigger member prizes than last year.
  6. 24 points
    The Masters provided some excellent drama for us all. Tiger's first win in 11 years was a momentous occasion that was felt worldwide. Aside from the greater golf public, three special Golf Spies especially benefited as the first winners of #SpyStaffSlam of the season. Thanks to some improvements in the process, we're now able to release the full scoring spreadsheet for each to view their own ranking. I encourage anyone interested to download a copy to mine the data for interesting stats and charts. The link has been posted in The Masters thread, but here it is again: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1RRiDBlLOeOQpB9jIKbyNsXvDbfW6qzXq-5l7Q-9izhw/edit?usp=sharing Before we get into announcements, here's some quick stats: 1150 Entries total making this year's Masters the largest #SpyStaffSlam yet. The Chalk picks of Rory, Kuchar, Poulter, Kisner, ZJ did quite poorly as a group but were pulled up as Kisner rose above the chalk curse by being a perfect in his Tier. As a group, Chalk finished at #608 on the leaderboard. Technically, "None" was the most popular pick for Tier 5. Apparently, reading is not fundamental. The Anti Chalk picks didn't fare any better; however, as they finished at #903 A perfect team would've been: Tiger, Xander, Webb, Oleson/Kisner, and Harding. Our winner had 4/5 correct!!! Speaking of winners, here's your honorable mention: 10) @TrippleBogie757 with $3,036,632 9) @curtis majeran with $3,050,571 8. @tbs0001 with $3,053,880 7) @dead aim with $3,144,591 6) @Sucina with $3,262,031 5) @David.lomberk with $3,361,311 4) @D_Golfer with $3,361,311 The margin was slim with a mere $300k separating these guys from 10-4. One different pick could've made the different and there was certainly room for improvement since 5 of these guys had invalid/none for Tier 5. Missed it by that much! Now, onto the prizes: 3rd/2nd actually came to a TIE!!! Both @GreasedUpStingers and @daviddvm picked the exact same team: Tiger, Xander, Cantlay, Kisner, Bjerregard for a total of $3,455,090. NOT ONLY THAT. Both spies picked -13 as the winning score. Equally close, equally PERFECT. You guys must be like soul mates or something. Wilson, being awesome as they are, has decided to give each of you both the 2nd and 3rd prizes: a D7 driver and a dozen golf balls of your choice. WOWZA. After the commotion of the co-runner ups has settled, time to announce our grand prize. With 4/5 perfect picks, our winner of ANY Wilson Staff Irons is: @Big Moody Winning Team: Tiger, Xander, Webb, Kisner, Mitchell for a total of $3,484,270 Congrats to the prize winners! Be on the lookout for a PM from me for fulfillment. If you didn't win, I hope you enjoyed the event. See you back at the PGA!!
  7. 24 points
    So Penny’s prom date got injured and had surgery today. I filled in and was her date. I have to say that the kids were great, the teacher chaperones first class, I wasn’t keen on the music. This is what my daughter looks like at her best. She was a delightful date. Had a wonderful time. Other than the music and more tattoos it could have been my prom from 45 years ago.? Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy
  8. 23 points
    STAGE-1 TESTER INTRODUCTION for: Official MGS 2019 PING G410 SFT Driver Review SUBMITTED BY: PING Apologist #9 Greetings Fellow Spies! My name is Robert and I am here to share my initial thoughts about one of PING’s newest driver models for 2019; The PING G410 SFT (Straight Flight Tech). First, I must thank everyone at MGS and the fine folks at PING Golf for entrusting me to test & evaluate the performance of this newest driver. It is a true honor and one that I take very, very seriously. I hope that my experiences with it will help you determine whether or not it lives up to the maker’s claims and if it will be worthy of your hard-earned dollars to consider buying for yourself. Stay tuned as I hope to answer both of those questions over the next several weeks. A bit about myself as a “golfer”. I live, work & play here in Southwestern Idaho, and though I’ve golfed here and there over the span of 30 years, I’ve never really considered golf as a serious hobby. But just over a year-and-a-half ago, I got the bug and started the journey with club purchases, constant upgrades and endless tinkering. Now I consider golf to be my “primary” hobby with fly fishing being a close second. My golf skill-set at this point is still mostly self-taught and I sit at a rather high and unfortunate 21 handicap. I’d much rather go out and play than practice most days, and this mentality probably holds me back quite significantly. My game strengths are chipping, wedge play, short irons and I love hitting my 3 and 5 woods. However, hitting driver is still an adventure for me. Even though I currently game the G400 SFT which is supposed to correct a slice (and why I chose it), my general shot shape is still a fade and my miss is the bad slice right. About 50% of my drives are “good” and travel 230-240-yds with a slight cut...Here's a "good-un"... Just like many, I really need to be able to make driver more of a consistent asset and not a continued enigma since I tend to use it a lot. I hit it on most par-4s & almost all par-5’s. I do not possess enough distance with my longer irons for those 160-190 yard shots (my true weakness) to avoid hitting driver from most tees. My 3 & 5-woods will save me usually when I need a 190-220 shot and sometimes I can get to some par-5’s in two with one of those clubs, but not too often. Plus, driver is just plain fun to hit! I need and want one that helps me have consistent distance and most of all, goes straight! After MGS declared the G400 LST as the Most-Wanted Driver of 2018 (https://mygolfspy.com/2018-most-wanted-driver), I knew I had to get into a 400…and pronto! That’s just what I did last August, and all though I didn’t fit into the (then) vaunted LST, the SFT model was a better suited to me and it remains my current gamer. So when PING announced the pending release of the new G410 line late last year, I was honestly a bit surprised. To me it seemed that the G400 series was cooking along just fine and really hadn’t been out long enough to be in need of any sort of upgrade. PING is constantly noted for their engineering prowess, and they too are also known for not just willy-nilly releasing new gear out to market “just because”. My first question I had for them when introducing this new line-up was “Why?” Was there something wrong with the G400’s?! Was an improvement needed so quickly???!! Their mantra has always been that a replacement line of golf clubs must have some true data to back up the fact that they really outperform the one they are intended to replace. This current paradox shall be the primary crux of my evaluation and I am very curious if this “improved” design does indeed give enough added benefits that are good enough to kick my beloved G400 out of the bag... But let’s be honest here. Ping hasn’t truly embraced the “adjustability” trend, especially with their driver, however this newest offering seems to have finally addressed that; especially considering other clubs in this same generation (like their newest G410 hybrids) now offer removable shafts and an adjustable hosel, where the same clubs from the 400 series did not. For driver they now have 8-way adjustability up from 4-way options before which did not include any loft settings. This is a leap in PING’s thinking, but is it too late and too redundant? Well, here is what PING states about the G410 SFT (https://ping.com/clubs/drivers/g410-sft “The G410 SFT (Straight Flight Technology) provides maximum fade and slice correction while delivering all the performance benefits of the G410 Plus such as a high MOI and faster ball speed. A fixed weight on the extreme perimeter and 50% more heel-side CG than G400 ensures straighter ball flights. A lighter D1 swingweight helps square the face at impact.” And this is what they had to say about the G400 SFT (https://ping.com/clubs/drivers/g400-sft “The G400 SFT (Straight Flight) is custom-engineered with more heel-side tungsten weighting and a lighter swingweight to help square the face and generate right-to-left shot bend (right-handed golfers). The multi-material design combines reduced drag and a thinner, stronger, faster T9S+ forged face to increase speed and distance. With a combined MOI over 9,000 and a deep CG, improved accuracy leads to tighter dispersion.” Are the G410 drivers better than the G400’s? Both descriptions sound very, very similar with the only exception being that the 410 has “50% more heel-side CG” than the 400 which you can easily (I hope) see below. Standard-issued swing weights are similar (both D1) and they both claim “faster” ball speed which is this year’s buzz term from everybody this year, or so it seems…. We shall see and I intend to find out if that 50% is the “shiznay” or just so much smoke. Just a day after I was awarded this honor, I set an appointment for a fitting. While my current driver was fitted to me, it was done so without the aid of a launch monitor. This time was to be my first foray into a hitting bay with a fitter. It was ugly. Swing speed was lower than I thought (only 90 at best) and I couldn’t seem to hit one straight to save my life. Add to that, they didn’t have a demo SFT head, so had to hit the “Plus” head with the weight in the “Draw-Bias” position which I don’t believe has the same “umph” for the draw-bias an actual SFT head does. Anyhow, I tried several shafts, and though the slices continued to rack up on the monitor, I settled for the Mitsubishi Tensei CK Orange in stiff. Regular flex just felt weird and I didn’t see much in the way of improvement, so I stuck to stiff which also will allow a more accurate “apples-to-apples” comparison between it and my 400. I had it cut down by ½” from the 45.75” norm which actually makes it a D0 swing weight according to my official PING "Birth Certificate". And I had the standard size GP Tour Velvet grip put on which suits me just fine... As for testing, I will put this 410 in direct competition with my 400, which may wind up being a bit of a battle... So, I will be gathering side-by-side data on the range with my basic launch monitor, shot scope app, in hitting bays with launch monitors and then game them and see if there are any differences at all between their performance. Most of all, I want to know if the added 50% of heel-side CG will help me have a more consistent and straight ball flight that is noticeably better than my 400... Strap in Spies and please send me any questions or testing ideas you’d like to see done. I will be happy to also share my "first-impressions" with you, just ask. I am here at your service. Please be looking for my Phase-II coming soon. Thanks for reading! Cheers all!
  9. 22 points
    I don't know if many of you follow Tony (@GolfSpyT) on twitter but he's been blowing it up with the golf ball test. Needless to say, this test is going to really help in golf ball selection and prove that there are some SIGNIFICANT differences in golf balls out there. I, for one, find this test more useful for my game than the most wanted putter or driver. Look at the iron test...this is average carry and dispersion (sorry, I'm trying to figure out how to embed his charts on twitter): https://twitter.com/GolfSpyT/status/1114139033238736897 You have one golf ball carrying 189...and another 203.5!! 14 yard difference...that's an entire club! In other tweets, he mentions: The fastest golf ball off the driver (115mph swing speed) is the Snell MTB X. There's also a 5.5mph difference in golf balls among fast driver speeds (115mph)...that's a huge difference in carry yardage given all the other launch variables are consistent. Some of the golf balls are flying 40yds offline off the driver...and this is a robot swinging the club. Even with a perfect swing, your golf ball could cause you to miss the fairway...tell me if that doesn't mess with your head. Also, he's mentioned a lot about playing just one ball and sticking to it. While I never really thought about it, after seeing the charts he's posted, I'm ready to make a 6 dozen purchase of whatever ball fits my game and play it only from here on out. Case in point: I used to switch from TP5X in the spring/summer/fall months to a Snell MTB Black in the winter time but then when I would switch back to the TP5X, all my approach shots were flying the green. All my carry yardages, especially on the irons, had to be retrained. Thanks MGS...and thanks Tony for posting these snippets on twitter.
  10. 22 points
    Testers Announced! Odyssey claims its new Stroke Lab shaft will improve your putting stroke. Who will be putting that claim to the test? @MaxEntropy @Berg Ryman @Apolloshowl @juspoole Join me in congratulating our reviewers! TESTERS WANTED (4) So you think the importance of shaft design is only important to drivers. Well the engineers at Odyssey Golf among some of the best and brightest minds in the business want to show you otherwise. For years counterbalancing has been a big buzz word in the world of putter shafts. Well the new Stroke Lab putters by Odyssey Golf aren't just counterbalanced, they take weight shifting to a whole new level or should I say end. As in redistributing 40 percent of the weight from the middle of the shaft into the butt and head end of the shaft. The results show that you will make a much more consistent stroke with Stroke Lab than with the standard putter shaft. Don't believe it? We're going to give you...well four of you a chance to prove it to yourself and the rest of the forum. How to Apply This is important, so please follow these instructions carefully: 1. If you haven't already, make sure you're a registered MyGolfSpy Forum member 2. In this thread (and ONLY in this thread - please don't go back to the blog and apply - it won't do you any good!), tell us the following: - Your first name - State - Your current model of putter - Is putting a strength or weakness of your game This review opportunity is open to any golfer who resides in the US or Canada. We'll be announcing the testers in this thread next week, so make sure to check back. Please do not 'quote' this post when applying...
  11. 21 points
    This was just posted on the MGS Facebook account, but I thought I'd copy it over here. Dear Tiger, Today I saw something I have never seen before. My husband (owner of MyGolfSpy) watching golf. Not sure if you have ever heard of MyGolfSpy. But to his readers, this may be news to them, Adam doesn’t really watch golf, or play golf. But here he was today, in the kitchen, phone [propped] on the ledge of the window above the sink, making sure I too would witness redemption (while cleaning dishes). I turned the water off. On the screen were a few leaves blowing on the course, you in a red shirt. Adam watched with the glow of the phone on his face verging on tears, yet fist clenched ready to pump. A win for you Tiger is a win for my husband. All these years watching you struggle was a constant reminder of his own struggle. A struggle in which you don’t see, he won’t show and he is too embarrassed to tell. Before I met Adam, he was thriving in his 20’s. Financially successful young business owner of one of very first online golf shops, participant in the world long drive event, and golf club designer. A strapping former collegiate athlete. Cue fibromyalgia. At 30, he was 145 lbs., barely mobile, and near death. Adam was forced to sell his business. This was about the time we met, and even in his weakened state, I was struck by his passion, just like he is with yours. He was trying to win just like you. There were so many surgeries and no answers or relief, but he kept at it. During the pregnancy of our first child, and at his absolute bottom he turned to me with that same glow I saw today while he watched you. This time, the glow was from the computer screen “I am going to start a site called MyGolfSpy, I’m going to change an entire industry.” What I want you to know is that you mean something special to my husband down to his soul. You are not only a small part of why he is still here today you are part of why he beat a disorder they said couldn’t be beat. He never said never. So, I thank you. Was Tiger's comeback an inspiration for you? I know it was for Adam and the sport of golf. Wife of Adam, Carrie
  12. 20 points
    How good can a $299 Driver be? How much technology can a company offer for that price? TourEdge's EXS driver was recently named My Golf Spy's Most Wanted Driver in Value. A $299 price for a driver is enough to get anyone's attention. But upon a closer look, you see a great looking driver that offers a lot of the same technology offered in much higher priced offerings, such as Roll Face technology, adjustable hosel and interchangeable weights just to name a few. So as we often do, we are turning to three of our members who we know will provide a well informed and written account of the driver and what it did for them. The chosen testers will get a driver to their specs to review and keep. How to be chosen: Open to all US Residents who play Right-handed Please follow the instructions below exactly. First Name/State of Residence Current Drive specs Model/loft/shaft/Flex Your handicap and driver swing speed, and do your regularly use any sort of LM for data collection Have you played a Tour Edge driver before, and what was your experience. We'll pick our testers sometime next week, so check back and good luck. ------------------------------------------------- Testers announced! @03trdblack, @ZJBogey2, @Badams69 will be putting this beauty to the test. Announcement below...
  13. 19 points
    OFFICIAL MGS FORUM REVIEW -BETTINARDI STUDIO STOCK #38 ARMLOCK PUTTER Stage 1 - Tester Introduction 4-15-2019 by GB13 I'd like to start off by thanking MGS and Bettinardi for the wonderful opportunity! I've was super excited to be selected for this test, and want to do my best to give y'all a killer review! INTRO I was lucky enough to do a review on True Golf Fit and Global Golf's U-Try program last year, so if you want to learn a little bit more about me personally, you can check it out here. (These reviews are a great read too, if you haven't checked them out already.) My bag hasn't changed too much since my TGF review. Obviously the Wilson C300 was added, and I also added a Callaway Rogue 3W and removed the Aeroburner 3W. I'm still a 4 handicap who is terribly inconsistent, (although I am improving with some swing changes). If I can get my putter to cooperate, I should be really close to scratch. Anyway, the club we need to focus on is the putter. I currently putt with a PING Sigma G B60 putter. It was 34" and standard lie. It's been in my bag for almost 2 years, and if I hadn't been selected for this test, it could have easily stayed for another 2 years. (Maybe, I'm kind of a club ho...) My putting is really streaky, (read: inconsistent). I usually hit a high number of greens per round (11-13), and end up leaving myself a lot of tough two putts. This puts my average putts around 32-34. In rounds where I miss more greens, my putting average is around 26-28. As you can see my putting stats can be very deceiving, so I wouldn't put too much stock into my putts per round. I'd focus more on whether or not my speed and line improve. While using the B60, I putted left hand low, with a quick tempo, and waaaaay too much wrist hinge. I chose the B60 because it fit my quick tempo and had 40°ish toe hang. I'm hoping to slow down my tempo and remove the wrist hinge with the armlock technique. My putting strategy is pretty aggressive. My goal is normally 2 feet past the hole. However, unfortunately, my goal and my reality is not the same. My speed is inconsistent at best and usually I end up leaving too many putts short. This is usually caused by an off-center hit. Then, later in the round, I overcompensate, hit one out of the center, and hit the putt 10 feet past the hole. To summarize this paragraph, my speed is extremely inconsistent. I usually start the ball on the line I want to. I putt with a line on my golf ball and just align the putter to the line. For me, it really allows me to focus on speed, and treat it like a straight putt. All I have to do is put a good stroke on it. I don't intend to change this with the armlock. What I do hope to change, is that pesky making a good stroke part... I make a lot of putts at 8-10 feet and am extremely confident from the 8-10 foot range. I really struggle with 3-5 footers. I know I should make most of them, but I just don't have the confidence standing over the ball that I'm going to make it. I'd rather have a 10 footer than a 4 footer, that is how bad I am putting from close range. Otherwise, I'd say I'm a pretty average putter from outside 15 all the way out to lags. One of my goals with the armlock is to get some sort of consistency from 3-5 feet, while not compromising the rest of my putting. INITIAL IMPRESSIONS First off, this putter is BEAUTIFUL! Bettinardi did a great job making a visually appealing mid mallet. Mid-Mallets (to me) are usually chunky and just ugly. Bettinardi shortened the heel-toe length and the SS#38 has a surprisingly small footprint. Bettinardi always nails the small details that set their putters above and beyond the competition, and the SS#38 is no exception. From the deep etch grip, to the premium milled face, to the classic graphics on the sole, every part of this putter has a premium feel and look. Now, you'll probably think I'm crazy for adding an entire paragraph for a headcover, but I just need to mention how nice and classy the graphics are. Bettinardi does have a reputation for their limited edition headcovers. I've almost always found their limited run headcovers, obnoxious. Bettinardi has definitely not made an obnoxious headcover here. It is actually quite simple blue with white accents, and an American flag. Super classy. Bettinardi is billing the SS#38 Armlock as "compact mallet with maximum forgiveness and easy alignment..." and having "20% deeper grooves for an even softer feel at impact." Does the SS#38 live up to what Bettinardi says? I'm not convinced yet, but I've only begun to get know my new Betti. I ordered my Betti at 41", 6° of loft, and with a 72° lie angle. The stock model is 40", 5° of loft, and 71° lie angle. I went longer because I'm 6'2". I went with the higher loft because of the armlock technique, which requires a lot of forward press. And, I went with the more upright lie angle, well, because I putt with the shaft more upright. I'm super intrigued by the armlock putting style. It has been gaining a lot of traction on tour, and as we know, our games perfectly mirror tour pros. Kidding aside, I'm really hoping to end up with a more repeatable putting stroke, that can start the ball online with decent speed. I'm trying to grip the putter fairly "conventionally" just with the putter grip/shaft running up my left forearm. After I grip the putter, my goal is to just rock my shoulders. I'm trying to keep it simple, and not over complicate things. So far, my results have been mixed. I've been able to get a great end over end roll, with decent speed, however I'm struggling to get the proper alignment. Not only has the armlock technique opened my shoulders at set up, this putter has a full shaft of offset, and sets up open to my eye. When I first tried the armlock, it was really uncomfortable. This is not a technique that you will have a quick adjustment period to. I've been hitting around 500 putts on my putting green everyday, and about 2 weeks after first receiving my Betti, I'm just starting to get comfortable with my set up. CONCLUSION If you got bored halfway through reading that (heck, I probably would have too), here is the summary: I previously putted left hand low with a PING Sigma G B60. I have a quick tempo and lots of wrist hinge. My speed is inconsistent, but I'm pretty good on hitting my line. I'm looking to improve on my short putts while retaining my performance long putts. Bettinardi created a beautiful premium putter. I'm struggling to adjust to the armlock, but am improving every day. My goals, and what ultimately drove me to switch to armlock are; -Better speed control -Eliminate wrist hinge -Slow down my tempo -Help on short putts -And to MAKE MORE PUTTS If any of the above goals aren't met, it will be tough for me to keep the SS#38 in the bag. As of right now, I'd say the odds are 50/50 that it gets a "permanent" spot in my bag. My testing has come to a screeching halt with this lovely mid-April snowstorm, however, you can expect plenty of updates from me until the stage 2s drop. Again, I'd like to thank Bettinardi and MGS for this opportunity and providing us an place where we can write unbiased reviews! Y'all are awesome!
  14. 17 points
    I made us a nice little group to go head to head as the pros go head to head this week. Follow the link below and use the password mygolfspy to join the group. https://fantasybracket.pgatour.com/og_objects/v1/wcbracket/groups/2007  If the link does't work, let me know. No prizes as of now for the winner, but if a non-staffer wins, I'll hit up the boss for something, or find something in my personal golf stash.
  15. 16 points
    Sit Down This is A Big One!! What's your most effective club after your last iron and before your driver, 4-hybrid, 5 wood, utility iron? And how does that club fit with the rest of your clubs in that gap? Were you fit for it? Well according to the people I met with at PING at the PGA Show, most golfers don't pay as much attention to this area as they pay to the driver, irons and putter. Sure it may not be as thrilling as a driver fitting, and being covered up with head covers they may not bring the attention to your bag that shiny new irons do. But properly fit and gapped, they absolutely will save strokes in your long game. So we are looking for four testers to join myself in putting the latest line of PING G410 fairway-woods/hybrids/crossovers to test to see how they help improve your long game. Which clubs will you be testing? Well that's where part of the real fun comes in. Once selected, the testers will be set up with a FREE fitting by the local rep or an authorized top fitter in the area, for the gap between driver and irons. When the fitter has determined the setup those specs will be sent to PING and you will receive the clubs to test/review and keep. It's imperative that anyone that applies for this testing, understands and agrees that they will receive exactly what the fitter recommends, and not what you think you'd prefer or think you'd be more comfortable with. If you're not willing to put your trust in the hands of professional fitters, than this testing isn't for you. So put all egos aside and go into the fitting open minded. I know I did exactly that and was quite surprised and even more pleased at the results. I'll share my experiences and setup once the testing has begun. Also just want everyone to know, while the recent partnership announcement between PING and Arccos is very exciting, they will not be an option for this this testing. How to apply. This is important, so please follow these instructions carefully: 1. If you haven't already, make sure you're a registered MyGolfSpy Forum member 2. In this thread (and ONLY in this thread - please don't go back to the blog and apply - it won't do you any good!), tell us the following: - Your first name - City/State - Your swing speed and handicap - Your current setup of FW/Hybrid/Utility,....for example: 17* Utility iron, 5 wood, 4 hybrid Right Hand or Left Hand This review opportunity is open to any golfer who resides in the US (due to fitting logistics). We'll be announcing the testers in this thread next week, so make sure to check back. Please do not 'quote' this post when applying...
  16. 16 points
    Stage One – Bettinardi SS38 Armlock - 4/15/19 My sincere thanks to MyGolfSpy and Bettinardi Golf for the opportunity to review this Armlock platform. Rather than bore you all over again with my story, I'll just leave this link to my Ping G400 LST review intro from last year - Stage 1 - Ping G400 LST If you'd rather not click through: (the short story) despite a very serious and time intensive approach to the game over the past 25 years, with age and hopefully increasing wisdom, it has become clear that truly having fun on the golf course was both an essential and missing ingredient from my experience. Don't get me wrong, I still _love_ winning, but have discovered it's personally a flawed foundation to build upon when the subject is playing my best golf. If you're interested WITB, my signature is up to date - all have spots for one reason... they work. My body (and life in general) no longer allow me to bang 500 balls a day, so I spend the majority of my time at the short game complex. I really enjoy working on all areas of the short game and my stat lines in that area are typically tidy. But the subject today is putting - more specifically Armlock putting (of which I am insanely curious). What the heck is Armlock putting? I'm glad you asked - it involves using a longish putter intended to take your hands/wrists out of the stroke via a design that intentionally "locks" the handle against your lead forearm. Why do I need an Armlock putter to take those body parts out of the equation? Another excellent question - technically you don't need an Armlock putter to neutralize their potential movement in your stroke...but it makes the task much easier. Why is important to neutralize those body parts? Many people actually don't think it matters much, but I disagree with those folks and I will explain further in Stage 2. I have not always been a good putter. In fact, I used to be a terrible putter or at the very least terribly inconsistent. Through High School my stroke was super handsy, some days it worked fine and others like I had never putted before. The stroke improved greatly in College but it was still pretty sad how close to the hole I was usually thinking "just don't 3-putt". I went through 4 putters over that stretch, all toe hanger blades. In 2004, I was introduced the concept of high-MOI faced balanced mallets. In my case, it was in the form of a center shafted Macgregor Bobby Grace V-Foil M5K GT. And it opened up a whole new world. It's been my gamer ever since, despite going toe-to-toe against 25-30 different face balanced mallets over the past 15 years. The M5K just won't go away. Let's talk a bit more in depth about my stroke - specifically path and face rotation. I adopted a straight back-through path in College. The face opens 1.5 degrees in my back stroke and is typically within 0.5 degrees of square (in relation to line) at impact. I'd say my tempo is somewhere in the middle of the road - not hurried but not really slow either. It's probably a combination of the M5K being a great putter for my tendencies, the experience of gaming it for over a decade and my love for practice, but I do not know anyone that putts better. Last season I played a stretch of 96 holes without a 3-putt. And there are also a few Spies that can additionally attest to the M5K's affinity for dropping bomb after bomb. Alright, thanks for staying through all the background, but I know you really came to hear about the Bettinardi SS 38 Armlock. Mine happens to be 40” long with a 71 degree lie angle and 3 degrees of loft. I say happens to be but those are actually the specs for which I was fit at my local Club Champion. I am of the opinion that being fit for your putter is important. And since this was my first real foray with the Armlock concept, I put myself in Mitch's (Manager - Club Champion Highlands Ranch) capable hands. First we confirmed my stroke stats with the M5K and then started comparing results with the Bettinardi Armlock putters they have in inventory. Almost all of my putters are set up with a 71 degree lie angle and 3 degrees of loft (2 degree of loft at impact is my ideal for USGA qualifier green speeds). At the end of my SAM Puttlab session, I was surprised to learn that my Armlock loft/lie specs were identical to my current gamers (more on why they matched and why I was surprised in Stage 2). Now let's dive into technical aspects of the SS38 Armlock with some putter porn. Bettinardi's packaging is both secure and classy. The deep etched blue cord grip (a Lamkin specialty product) is 15 inches long and feels firm, tacky and of a quality that will last for decades. I think Bettinardi has one of the cooler shaft band labels in the biz and the SS38 head is easy to sole squarely. 303 Stainless Steel is on the hard end of the metal spectrum from which putters are typically made and to soften up the face (and probably also improve the impact sound), Bettinardi milled some seriously deep grooves into the face. The top and face are both a matte gray finish but the polish can still shine back a bit under the right light (read: high noon). The sole is a much higher polish with a classy arrangement and paint fill, as is typical of Bettinardi. It's important to regularly check for cavities and also instructive to see the before/after of the rear cavity view to highlight how Bettinardi bumped up MOI on the relatively compact SS38 mallet. It's not quite face balanced (Mitch called it an eighther - roughly 10 degree toe hang) What does all this mean to me? Well, I'm intrigued but not certain of anything at the moment. Except that I intend to roll at least 200 putts a day on different practice greens (and a lot more dry fires in the living room sans golf ball) until I can conclusively determine what (if any) effect an anchored handle has on my path/face rotation, feel for pace and overall putting stats. In my experience feel -vs- reality can sometimes present an astonishing disparity, so I intend to continue analyzing and updating with video throughout the review process. Thanks again for reading and please reach out in the review thread if you have any specific questions or additional testing requests.
  17. 16 points
    I got a bit ahead of myself. I was planning on my 10k mark being the congratulations of The Masters winner, and was planning to run a 10k that day.... I blab on a lot, mostly a bunch of gibberish. Have some terrible ideas, good thoughts... bad plans... All of you wonderful members have hit they like button over 14000 times. Thank you. Truly one of the best places on the internet. Keep up the good work everyone. And thanks for keeping the conversations going! I talk too much. Thanks for putting up with me! Just need that 10k banner now, and this will be the last of this kind of thread from me. Cheers!
  18. 16 points
    I had to buy this headcover in respect for my son who is serving our country.
  19. 15 points
    A fellow spy contacted me asking about the whipping of a friends 5-wood that came undone. He wondered if this is something most golf repair men still fix or if it’s something he could do on his own. I told him most old timers can probably do it, but it’s also something he could do himself, he just needed a little instruction and a few supplies. Now, this diy is to show you how to re-wrap whipping that has come undone, which you can remove and reuse, or if the whipping is completely gone, using new whipping. I didn’t have any clubs that were ready for whipping on my drying rack right now so I just used an old club that I’d found that already had the whipping removed. I have a few tricks to make whipping easier, like a whipping jig I built and use, but for this diy, I’m going to show you the easiest way for a guy at home in his garage using the most basic of clubbuilding tools can re-whip an old persimmon wood. First put your club in a rubber golf club clamp and gently tighten so that the club is secure but can still be spun easily in the club. This is important to make winding the whipping easier. Next, grab your whipping. You can remove and reuse the old whipping or you can use new whipping. I offer 5-yard spools for DIYers that will wrap one club, so that’s what we’ll use here. Take the spool and cut off about 8 inches of whipping and set it aside, we will use this piece later. Next, take the spool and unwind it a bit. Lay the end whipping on the spool about 1/2” down the back of the shaft at the top where the whipping begins. You usually see a discoloration on the shaft to see where to start, just make sure it’s on the back of the head. Wrap around the shaft about 5 times over the end to keep it secure. Now, continue wrapping by using your right hand to guide the whipping while the left hand twists the club head to rotate the shaft in the clamp/vise. Continue wrapping the whipping tightly until you are about five wraps from the end. Take the 8” piece of whipping you cut off earlier, make a loop with it, and lay it down on the back of the club head on top of the whipping. Continue whipping over top of the loop your final five or six turns. Once you have reached the bottom, thread the end of the whipping through the loop. Pull the loop up and the end of he whipping will be tucked underneath the last five rows of whipping. Use an Exacto knife to cut the excess from the tucked pieces at the beginning and end of your wrap. Apply some clear nail polish to to keep the ends secure. And there you go. A nice, tight whipping, and an old club ready for many more rounds.
  20. 15 points
    EXTRA! EXTRA! EXTRA! Some golfers have an edge on others... ...but few have a TOUR edge. Join me in congratulating these 3 fine spies for being selected to test the MyGolfSpy most wanted best value driver of 2019! @03trdblack @ZJBogey2 @Badams69 Personally I am very excited for this specific test as this could be the best deal on the driver market this year. Have fun gents and can't wait for you to put this thing through the ringer. I'll be sending you a PM shortly.
  21. 15 points
    First and foremost, a huge thank you to both MGS and Bettinardi Golf for providing the opportunity to test and provide feedback for this product. I’m honored to be a part of this test and will strive to provide an honest review that will give the readers more insight to this putter. A bit about me before we delve into the nitty gritty of the putter. I took up golf later in life around the age of 38 after retiring from the US Submarine Service. For some reason, brass frowned on driving a golf ball down the narrow passageways of the sub. I’ve been playing golf for around 30 years now and thoroughly enjoy the game. Until recently, I carried an 8 handicap. Following neck and knee surgeries, my game has slipped quite a bit, as has my handicap, moving up to between 10 and 12. I carry a driver and 3 fairway metals, all TaylorMade M4. My irons consist of custom fit Callaway Apex CF19 6-AW and a 54 and 60 degree Callaway Mack Daddy 4. Since the review is on a putter, I’ll only discuss my putting. I’m currently putting with an Odyssey Stroke Labs 7S putter. Prior to this putter, I was gaming a Taylor Made Tour Spider, both being toe balanced mallet putters and both being found by Club Champion as suitable to my putting stroke. Until going with these putters, I used toe balanced blade putters exclusively. My putting grip is conventional. Over the years, I’ve attempted to adopt other putting styles, including left hand low and various claw grips. None of them felt comfortable and I always returned to a conventional grip. I’ve never been a lights out great putter, but I’ve always felt as if I were a decent putter. My biggest fault putting is not aggressively stroking the putter to get the ball past the hole, preferring to die it in the hole. This method has often left me short or getting more break than I had planned for. I’ve tried to be more aggressive, but have never achieved comfort putting that way. Another fault is that occasionally my left hand will twist counter clockwise, closing the face at impact. Having said all of my, I stand over putts fairly confident on short putts from tap in to 6 feet out. On putts 6-15 feet, I feel confident that my line and distance control will leave me a tap in. As I get further out than 25 feet, I’m far less confident in my distance control and have a tendency to get further off line when taking longer strokes. Perhaps this armlock putter will be the answer these issues. Now on to the more important matters – the gear I and others will be testing and reviewing -- the Bettinardi Studio Stock 38 Armlock putter. The specs from the website list it at weighing 400 grams made of 303 stainless steel. It is face milled and comes with a custom 15 inch Lamkin grip. They further describe it as a compact mallet with maximum forgiveness and easy alignment with 20% deeper groves for a softer feel at impact. It comes in a hand polished platinum finish with a sharp sapphire blue paint scheme. They offer a number of fit options regarding length, lie, and loft. I opted to go with standard length of 40 inches, standard lie of 71 degrees, but I wanted a more lofted face and chose to go with 7 degrees of loft. It was suggested that length should hit your forearm 2 inches below your elbow. My reasoning to go with more loft was to overcome any forward shaft lean at impact while still providing 3-4 degrees of loft. From reading, the amount of forward lean is significantly affected by ball position. MSRP is a hefty $450. First Impressions! From the custom Lamkin blue grip with white lettering to the polished head, it is a good looking putter. It is a face balanced putter and it feels well balanced in the hand. The grip has a very nice texture to it, but isn’t too rough on the hand. At address, as you look down on the putter head, you see a duller matte finish to minimize glare. The compact mallet head has a single alignment line on the body of the mallet, leaving the top line of the putter void of markings. The design of the head also has a stepped build that also acts as a ball centering aid. The face has a blue logo on the heel of the putter and the center is adorned with grooves. As you look down at the putter, you notice the added loft but once you press the grip against your lead arm, the effective loft is offset by the forward shaft lean. While the head cover is attractive, it is a very tight fit on the putter and uses a Velcro closure at the heel. Personally, I would have preferred to see a mallet style cover with magnetic closure. I’ve been out on the putting green with it a few times and I have to say that it’s an awkward feeling to get used to putting with this style putter. After adjusting ball position and how far down the shaft to grip, I believe I’ve found the most comfortable position that is delivering somewhat consistent results. While it’s rolling the ball nicely and I’m controlling distance fairly well, I’m finding it difficult to align, mainly because of the forward shaft lean and the way my eyes want to set over it. Thank you for the opportunity to review this putter. Feel free to ask any questions and I’ll do my best to give you my thoughts on that. Below are a couple of links to videos (no Oscars for them) 20190412_123900 by Carl Harsch, on Flickr 20190412_124913 by Carl Harsch, on Flickr
  22. 15 points
    Hello, everyone! I’d like to start by thanking MyGolfSpy and Callaway for this opportunity. As a longtime reader of MGS and the forums, I’m pleased to be able to contribute back to this awesome community. I’m a 30-year-old hacker who has whacked around golf balls for as long as I can remember. I grew up on a large farm, often grabbing my father’s old clubs to take aim at objects in the yard. Although I played baseball in high school, I spent a lot of time with friends on the golf course once I earned my driver’s license. I have never taken formal lessons. I golfed often throughout college, breaking 90 once. I met my wife at the end of college, and we moved away from our home state of Michigan for work in 2013. We spent time in Wyoming and New Mexico before returning home to Michigan in 2017. I played very little golf during our four years away. Last spring, I played in a charity scramble for my work. It was one of the most humiliating golf days of my life. I was the only member of my foursome with any golfing experience, but I played awfully. Tops, shanks, the works. After, I decided I either needed to sell my clubs and give up golf completely, or commit to getting better. I spent months working on my swing through YouTube videos and many, many practice swings. I have played five nine-hole rounds since October 2018, shooting 49, 46, 45, 42 and 43 on very wet courses and sub-50 degree days. Eighteen holes is a rarity for me. Our dog, a house always in need of fixing and a 675-square-foot vegetable garden stretch my summers plenty thin. I’m thankful for an understanding and golf-playing wife, of course. I have never been more than an average player when playing well. The strength of my game at the moment is my course and mental strategy. The last three rounds of mine have been some of the best golf of my life. Driver has always been an issue and is the worst club in my bag. Although I have been practicing the SuperSpeed protocols with my homemade sticks, the speed increases have not yet permanently transferred to my actual driver swing. I lack confidence in the driver and it shows in my erratic results with it on the course. Right now, I sit comfortably between 97-100 MPH with the driver in cold weather. As the videos show, I currently am fighting a backswing sway that manifests as a forward move/over the top/casting sequence in the downswing. I had purchased a new old stock Cobra F6 from eBay this winter, but only played two rounds with it. My testing of the Epic Flash will be without direct comparison to another club. I had never been fit for any of the clubs in my bag or hit a single shot on any launch monitor prior to this opportunity. For this testing, I was fitted at The Golf Emporium in Rockford, Michigan, using a Flightscope. On this particular day I struggled with nerves and an unrepeatable swing. My angle of attack was very steep, and my Flightscope results looked the part of an early season swing. That influenced my fitting into the HZRDUS Smoke 6.0 60 gram shaft. The Smoke is a low-spin option meant to help offset the steepness of my swing. (If Jack “The Hammer” Hamm influenced Callaway’s marketing...) For me, the name Epic Flash and the green/yellow color scheme screams “comic book hero.” This baby certainly looks the part! It is gorgeous! Callaway’s selling point for the Epic Flash is that the driver face is the first created with artificial intelligence. According to the marketing material, Callaway’s computers iterated through more than 15,000 face prototypes before settling on the production design. It arrived on spec at 45.5 inches long and at D4 swingweight. Forgetting the technology for a moment, two little things really stuck out to me when the Epic Flash arrived on my doorstep. As someone who orders a lot of things over the internet, I appreciate the minimalist shipping box Callaway used (pictured below next to the shipping box for my Wilson C300 irons). The subtle branding makes the box less of a target for package thieves. A second small, but awesome detail. An easily-removable UPC on the shaft. No Goo Gone necessary. Little things like this really show the thought put into these drivers. I work in information technology, so I’m a sucker for all things computers. I’m very excited to see how the Flash Face technology benefits my game. I am plagued by inconsistent ball striking, putting me smack dab in the middle of Callaway’s AI-driven demographic. (Don't hate me for the iron headcovers. These clubs spend a lot of time being thrown in and out of my trunk. I hate bag chatter.) This is my first driver with an adjustable weight track. The Epic Flash features a 16-gram weight. As my first Callaway, it is also my first experience with the Optifit system. Forever a tinkerer, I am very interested to see how I can use those things to my advantage. The arrival of the Epic Flash coincided perfectly with spring finally arriving. I purchased both a range and course membership, so this summer should be spectacular! I'm looking forward to putting this beauty through its paces and reporting back. I was also invited back to The Golf Emporium to grab some launch monitor numbers later this summer. Honestly, given my past struggles the Epic Flash doesn’t need to do much to earn a spot in my bag. I am excited to see if this club can give me the confidence I desire from the tee box and to see if the Flash Face technology lives up to its hype. (PS: Early indicators are positive!)
  23. 15 points
    Round Recap - April 6th Best weather of the year thus far in New Jersey on Saturday. Temps hit the low 60s, it was sunny and there was no wind. Perfect day to get out and play 18 with the G410 I played with my brother in law, who is a former assistant pro and we hit our clubs similar distances. On the first hole, BIL teed it up first. We were playing from the blues and it was a short Par 4 playing 337. He hit a beautiful baby draw right down the middle. Put the pressure right on me. I followed his up with a baby draw of my own. The drives looked similar from the tee, but when we got up to the balls they were definitely different - I was 25 yards passed him! My first drive ended up going 307 yards (GPS measured). The Ping G410 made its presence known early. As the round continued I was continuously impressed with the G410. What really stood out to me was performance on low-face hits. There were a few that I didn't quite catch, but ended up much further than I expected. Another thing that really stood out was the fact that I didn't miss the left once all day. I pulled the G410 10 times and I hit the fairway 5 times. The times that I did miss the fairway I actually missed the fairway right! Some of this was me being used to over draws and aiming right to compensate. I had the G410 set to fade and in the flat position so it is set up to be anti-left and things definitely played out that way. If things continue like this over the next few rounds, I might have to move to a slightly more neutral setup to see how that changes things. As I mentioned in my shaft testing post above, I would have no problem gaming the Ping Tour shaft as my full time shaft. I was long, I was hitting fairways, and my misses where always in fantastic shape. It is nice when a driver gives you confidence like this. That being said, I cannot wait to game the G410 Plus with the Accra TZ5. Based on what I saw in my fitting, it the shaft really is an ideal fit for me and will fully unlock the performance of the G410 Plus.
  24. 14 points
    Testers Announced! In the golf world, there are shaftoids: And there are shaft skeptics: Wherever you are on that spectrum, now four MGS Forum Members will get to find out, "What can a shaft do for my putting?" (I gotta admit: I'm very interested in this one.) Odyssey claims its new Stroke Lab shaft will improve your putting stroke. Who will be putting that claim to the test? @MaxEntropy @Berg Ryman @Apolloshowl @juspoole Join me in congratulating our reviewers!
  25. 14 points
    Great stuff Joe, love it that you're hitting limited flight balls over the net at the end of the range. When I was at PING a couple weeks ago, I got to see the infamous Bubba net, now the infamous Cameron net---they might need to raise it even higher---but I didn't quite hit it over that...ha BTW, to all the testers in all threads, I love the new format of this year with continual updates after rounds and range sessions instead of "saving it for Stage 2" it really keeps the thread alive and readers engaged. You guys are doing great with it.
  26. 14 points
    Round Recap - April 19th I got a last minute invite to play on Good Friday and who was I to say know. Temps started in the mid 50s and finished in the high 60s. Winds were 10-15 MPH with gusts around 25 mph. I shot 4 over (76) for my best round of the year. But you guys don't come to this thread to hear how I played, you come hear for my thoughts on the G410. Well here we go... It is the real deal. This round was still with the Ping Tour shaft, so while it fit me, I knew that I would have an even better fit once my ACCRA arrived. I think the Ping Tour shaft is a fantastic no-upcharge shaft. It is going to fit a wide variety of golfers and can handle some pretty aggressive swings. The driver head? Well so far it has lived up to the billing. I played the round with the weight in the toe (fade position) and with the hosel at neutral at the settings were an absolutely dream for me. I missed one fairway all day with the driver. ONE. 1. Uno. And it was on 18 with a 25MPH wind in our face and water down the entire left hand side. I missed right. 5 yards off the fairway. Exactly where I aimed it to take the water out of play. It was the single best driving day I have ever had. Moving from the flat to the neutral hosel setting definitely helped improve my start line better and I saw the draws I am used to. Really happy with the adjustability of this head. As for distance? Yes, some where wind aided, but I hit 4 of the longest drives I have ever hit in my life. I hit 4 drives over 330 yards and 2 of those measured at over 340! To give some perspective, my buddy who normally drives it around 260 hit drives of around 275-285 on those holes. Into the wind I still hit some fantastic drives that still got out over 260 which I was pleasantly surprised with. The Ping G410 Plus provides me such a great balance of distance and stability. It is low spin enough to let me hit some absolutely bombs, but not super low spin to the point where I cannot control it. I hit a couple toe balls and they still stayed in the air for a good amount of time and didn't duck hook left like it would have with some other drivers. I chalk that up to the head design and the moveable weights. All in all, just super happy with everything about the G410 right now and knew things were only going to get better as my fitted shaft was set to arrive on Monday. That leads us to.... Range Recap - April 22nd The mailman dropped of my shaft at 2pm and I immediately opened it up and popped in in the G410 head. I grabbed the rest of my clubs, told my wife I loved here and rushed out the door to my driving range. I warmed up through the bag then finally got to the G410. She had just performed so well for me on Friday, so how was she going to behave today with the new shaft? Well to sum it up, I eventually had to stop hitting driver because I had a little wind at my back and I was hitting the limited distance range balls over the hill/fence at the back of the range onto railroad tracks. Fence was at 265. I have a great relationship with the folks that run my range so I didn't want to lose any more of their range balls! While I mentioned I could absolutely game the Ping Tour 65x shaft if that was my only option (see round performance above ), I knew that the best review of the Ping G410 Plus head would only come if I was truly optimized with the right shaft. At club champion I got fit with the ACCRA TZ5 65 M5 and you can check out my thoughts as to why I selected that shaft here: April 5th - Shaft Testing at Club Champion Now that I was truly swinging freely with absolute confidence in the shaft, the Ping G410 Plus driver head began to shine brighter than ever before. Just beautiful high baby draws and baby fades. It saw smiling from ear to ear. I have hit many many many drivers on this range over the last 6+ years and I have never seen balls land where they were landing (or presumably landing, as I couldn't see the ones that were coming down in the trees and on the railroad tracks over the fence in the back). I cannot wait to get this combination out on the course. As I mentioned above in my round recap, the G410 Plus definitely retains a lot of the forgiveness/stability properties from its older brother, the G400 Max. Hits low on the face still launched relatively high and travel a better than acceptable distance. Toe hits stay in the air longer than you would expect. Just a really well balanced driver. For the sake of testing, I did play around with some other settings. I lofted down which opened the face and immediately noticed much more fades. I have to say it wasn't a ball flight I am used to seeing or practicing with so I set the sleeve back to neutral. I definitely want to experiment with that setting some more - perhaps opening the face and then moving the weight to neutral to balance it out a little. I posted this video clip yesterday, but I'll post it here again - I captured the sound when hitting range balls. Definitely sounds different than a lot of the drivers on the market, but that is mainly because it doesn't have a carbon fiber crown - the crown of the G410 is Titanium. All in all, testing could not have gotten off to a better start. Everything Ping has claimed in their marketing materials seems to be valid. I never gamed a Ping club before this driver test, and now I am wondering why I never gave Ping a chance before. I guess I thought a lot of their design stuff was gimmicky and flashy, but I am beginning to see that there is a method to their madness. As always, please ask me any and all questions and I will do my best to answer them as thoroughly as possible
  27. 14 points
    Yesterday, I realized that I was about to break through a mildly monumental milestone, 1,000 posts. It caught me off guard and made me stop to reflect. When I first began participating in the forums, I did not think I would reach the 1,000 post milestone for quite some time. Honestly, I didn't know that I had 1,000 things to say about the game of golf or life that would be worth the attention of an audience. When I started in the forum, I just wanted to find a place to learn more about the game of golf and pick the brains of people far superior to mine. Holy smokes, was I dead wrong. Not only did I have 1,000 things to say, there was an audience that was willing to listen and engage. It's incredible the warm reception that I have been given here in the forums, and I am forever grateful for the respectful camaraderie that exists in MGS. I am lucky to have found the brains of people for superior to mine and their willingness to share their knowledge and wisdom. I hope that my contributions so far have served the audience and I will keep working to provide mildly intelligent insight from my life experience and attempts to make it around a golf course. Thank you, MGS.
  28. 14 points
    All, Consider this a partial review of both Club Champion and my notes from the drivers and shafts I hit while there. My appointment was with Brian at the Bellevue, WA location of Club Champion. Brian was very nice to work with, very keen on some specific numbers and overall I would rate my experience with him at a 9 out of 10. We started off with my current driver, Ping G400 Max with the Tour 65 Stiff shaft and the head set to 11.5 degrees. After a baseline of 10 shots he pulled about 20 shafts from the wall and I went through hitting 5 shots with each of them to get some quick numbers. Man, that is a lot of driver swings. My baseline, was 244 carry, 16* launch angle with 3300rpm of Backspin. This backspin number I found really interesting. I have been on CGquad 3 times in the last year, and each time with my current driver I had <2000rpm of backspin. So while I trust Trackman and the fitting I got, the numbers were decidedly not what I was expecting. That said, a few shafts felt great, a few felt horrible and performance definitely varied between them all. The 2 best shafts for me were the The Fuji Ventus 6s, and the Mitsubishi Diamana. Another round of swings with just those two and the Ventus 6s gave me the best overall perfomance. It lowered my launch to 13 my backspin to 2500 and increased my carry out to 255. With those new numbers, we spent the next hour trying to beat the performance of my G400Max with the Ventus combo. 1 hour into 1 sentence; we couldn't. The closest contenders for me were a g410+, the F9 and the 0811x. All three were very good for me.The F9 gave me the best distance numbers, that wasn't a surprise based off its reviews. The F9 with the Fujikura Pro 2.0 TourSpec had some amazing distance numbers for me. The 410+ was basically identical in performance to the G400Max and the 0811X... I am not going to lie, I didn't want to like it as it really was more than I wanted to spend for a driver. But had the ventus been one of the shaft upgrade options for it, it would be my new driver. I absolutely love the look and feel of it, its the best driver I have ever hit in those categories. Its performance matches anything out there. If it comes with a shaft combo that fits you, it is a really valid choice. For me, none of the shafts I could choose with it beat out my G400. But with the Ventus in it... I felt like the Marine marksman that it pays homage to. My first 5 shot test with it had all 5 shots within 17' of each other, none more than 10' from the center of the fairway and landing a nice 252 yards away from me. This shaft and club head combo was unbelievably accurate for me. I took another 5 shots and got the same average carry but I did throw in one wickedly bad open face push to expand my dispersion. Taking that 1 out of the mix, I had 9 shots all inside a 3 point line from the hoop. But, given the $575 head, then another ~ $400 for the Ventus I just couldn't bring myself to go there. I tried to figure out what was the most expensive shaft that I could get for the $575 price, then immediately sell to offset the cost of the ventus. But at the end, I kept my 400Max and ordered a new Ventus shaft. The G400 Max/Ventus combo had a couple more yards of average distance, and twice the area of dispersion, but that area was still incredibly accurate and kept every shot in the fairway. It just wasn't quite as ridiculous as the 0811X/Ventus combo was. So, Brian at Club Champion 9 / 10 the F9 9 / 10 the 410+ 9/10 the 0811X 9 / 10 the Ventus 6S shaft 100 / 10. It is that good. I will throw out my 1 negative experience with Club Champion. I did order the Ventus while I was there, and for them to make it for me (?), the price for it ballooned up to almost $500 ( $415 for the shaft+ $30 for an adapter + $30 for shipping + $12 for a grip) and it was a two week wait. Since I hadn't really looked into the Ventus as far as price went, I was okay with that at the time. But then as I got home and found that MSRP was $350, and a number of retailers would add the adapter, shipping and grip for free as well as get it to me in 4 days... I am okay with paying a small premium, but $150 for 99% the same thing caught me as too much so I cancelled my order. Then I found someone selling theirs on Ebay (claimed to have never hit it) with a Ping adapter already on it and I got it for $235. So, that is a cool $245 savings from my original purchase price. 10 / 10.
  29. 14 points
    Howdy MGS's. Well, in addition to having played 5 rounds now with the G410 Plus, I was able to get a day at the range to see just how it was comparing to my Callaway Razr-Fit. With respect to the golf rounds, it was in the bag when I shot my best round (77) of the winter season at Mesa Del Sol. Not really sure how much further I was hitting it than my RF, but I did hit all but two fairways and the two missed were not bad misses. My last two rounds with it were not as good. At Cocopah GC, I was having trouble with fades. At Las Barancas both fades and hitting high on the face. But to be honest, the rest of my game was not exactly clicking on either round, so the G400 gets a pass. The Challenger Now bear in mind that I just recently (January 2018) purchased this used Callaway Razr-Fit, to replace my GBB Warbird, and have subsequently felt like I had stepped into another era of golf. While I immediately gained distance, perhaps 10-15 yards, the most striking benefit was the forgiveness in miss hits. As the the 2018 season rolled along, my driving accuracy kept increasing as did my confidence. I only wish I had taken the advice from friends to upgrade my driver years earlier. I'll also add that I picked the RF up at a shop in Tempe, AZ for a whopping $65.00 (which included a length adjustment and new Callaway grip). I mention this only because for me to hand over $500.00 for the latest in drivers would take some serious performance results. While I love being long off the tee, the decision is predominantly based on scoring... will that club help lower my handicap? Mr. PING G410 Plus, meet Mr. Callaway Razr-Fit (which, btw got some high praise from MGS https://mygolfspy.com/callaway-razr-fit-driver-review/). At the Desert Hills CG range, I onced again warmed up with my 6i and captured the data. Another big shout out to George for letting me use their LM and providing a free large bucket of balls - Thanks George! I hit about a dozen balls with each driver just trying to get into a nice hitting groove. I then alternated between the drivers, capturing this data and culled out the two best and two worst from each. George told me that their range balls are typically 10-15% shorter in distance to game balls. Club Smash Factor Spin Ball Speed Club Speed Carry Distance Razr-Fit 1.47 2132 128 87 206 Driver 1.46 2203 130 89 209 1.46 2218 131 90 211 1.42 2394 128 90 206 1.47 2174 132 90 213 1.51 1978 133 88 215 1.48 2102 130 89 213 1.50 2096 129 90 212 1.46 2223 130 89 210 1.49 2138 131 90 214 1.47 2165.8 130.2 89.2 210.9 G410 Plus 1.52 1954 137 90 222 Driver 1.51 1978 133 88 218 1.47 2160 131 89 215 1.43 2386 132 92 213 1.51 1978 133 88 215 1.44 2404 133 93 215 1.52 1936 134 88 217 1.51 1978 133 88 215 1.46 2248 134 92 217 1.50 2042 135 90 219 1.49 2106.4 133.5 89.8 216.6 PE2 6i 1.48 4827 101 69 141 1.49 4834 101 70 141 1.51 4931 103 68 144 1.52 4644 102 70 138 1.47 4853 100 68 134 1.50 4743 101 70 143 1.48 4805 100 68 140 1.49 4805.3 101.1 69 140.1 Bill's Most Wanted Swing Typical Hits on the G410 The numbers are improved across the board. To be really honest, I did not expect this. I am by nature suspicious of marketing claims. This certainly supports PING claims of the club heads aerodynamic performance - less resistance yielding faster club head speed and ball distance. What I cannot share in this test is the lower, more piercing ball flight I get with the G410. As I mentioned in my original stage 1 thread, I tend to hit high shots - driver included. I really love that my trajectory is lower with the G410. During my course rounds thus far, it's been REALLY nice seeing my drives roll out a little. I do plan to repeat this same test with my club fitter in Bozeman, MT who has state-of-art LM equipment and has graciously offered to help - Thanks in advance Woody!! So, this is exciting. Thus far, I really like the way the G410 feels and I'm not debating which boom stick to put in the bag. I have a few return to home (ranch) base projects that will occupy a bit of my time in the next month but, weather permitting, I hope to get a few more rounds in on the local courses - in advance of the peak season. Reading what @jlukesis experiencing using the weight adjust feature, I plan to monkey with that a bit - especially if that fade tendency comes back. I sure hope this is helping those of you out there interested in PING's latest driver. More to come, Thanks for reading!
  30. 14 points
    Just got back from a great trip to Bandon Dunes.
  31. 14 points
    Thank you, MGS and Callaway, for selecting me to test the Epic Flash Sub Zero 2019 most wanted winner! It is an incredible honor to be selected. I have never been so nervous to win anything in my life but super stoked to put this driver through the paces. To all my fellow spies, I will put all my effort into bringing you a review that will bring insight into the actual use of the driver and how it might fit into your game. My name is Ryan, I live in Fresno, California with my wife (of 19 years, and our two amazing children, Addison (16) and Thomas (13). We also have four dogs. They are all amazing and allow me to have golf as a main focus in my life (my family not the dogs). For those of you unfamiliar with Fresno. It is located almost smack dab in the middle of the state. Just over 2 hours and I can drive to the coast or to Yosemite. As with most of California you can play year-round, we will get very hot during the summer, but all of this has allowed me to play a lot of golf and at many great courses. I am a Controller at an almond processor and other than the commute, it is a great job. In between work and home is play, or a golf course in my case. My home club is located on the way home from work. It is a private club consisting of almost exclusively farmers. The membership has had better years but it is still hanging tough. With fewer members it means fantastic pace of play. Saturday 9 am tee time and its 3 hours 15 minutes. Since it is on my way home from work, I play frequently. It’s not unheard of for me to play 5 times a week. I played my first round of this great game at the age of 13. I knew so much about golf in general that upon arriving at my ball in the fairway I went searching though my bag for a tee. That’s what I did on the first shot why wouldn’t I on the second? . I shot 99 on the par 68 that day and really should’ve never left the golf course. Instead I played basically everything but golf. Golf wasn’t cool, but mainly it was baseball that got in the way. Baseball is my first love and with it being the same season as golf, golf took a backseat. I probably played a dozen or so rounds between 13 and 18. I can still remember it to this day, standing on the diamond of my junior college team, it was during infield practice and I decided I didn’t want to put in the effort to play anymore ball. I went straight from the field to the golf course and haven’t looked back since. 3 months later I made that same Junior College’s golf team. Quick story about the quality golfer I was then. Our first tournament standing on the first tee, I was with the first threesome off. All 3 teams were all gathered watching. I was so nervous I could barely hold the club. I hit 4 balls off that tee. The first two went a combined 20 yards and hit the pro shop, located pretty much right behind me, the third one OB left, the fourth was destined for the same spot until it somehow bounced the opposite direction, it was in play and I couldn’t run fast enough off the tee. I made a 12 and shot 89. (left side is pre lesson, right side is post lesson.) As you can see, I hit the ball to all fields, just like on the diamond. Miss is either a block or a pull hook. Even with that, my driver is my weapon. I play par 5’s in under par, and if I have to hit a shot on a particular line off the tee, 99% of the time it will be with driver regardless of distance needed. I have bored you enough with me now let’s move to the good stuff. I have had the privilege of hitting all 3 versions of Callaway’s JailBreak technology drivers. The epic was good but the mishits were punished. The Rouge was a definite improvement in that category. So, what can AI and Flash Face add to JailBreak. Is it the magical combination of both? I was fit for my current gamer by Club Champion, my swing being as it was prior to my lesson I was forced to play very heavy clubs my entire life. If they weren’t heavy, they would go left and keep turning left. Pretty sure if I played in space, I could hit the ball in a full circle. My irons for example are D9. My instructor fit me for the Flash and we decided that as I have and continue to rebuild my swing, I can keep a lighter club on the planet. So, I was fit for a 10.5* with the PROJECT X HZRDUS SMOKE 60 X-Stiff, it is turned down a degree and the weight is all the way in the toe. Lighter equals faster for me. With the swing changes and the lighter club, I have seen almost a 10 mph increase in club head speed. Prior to January 98.5 was where I was at. During the fitting I was between 107-108, with ball speeds hitting 163, now if I just knew where the club face was. I wish I had the actual report however during the fitting the internet and computer crashed. I am super excited to see how all this translates to the golf course. It really doesn’t mean much unless you can stand on the 18th tee knowing that a perfect drive will win you the match and then being able to execute it. I had hit the Flash prior to receiving it, but for those of you who haven’t seen it the colors are that bright. Not really my cup of tea but results are what truly matter. The top line is just beautiful though. They moved the crescent on top more towards the middle compared to the Rouge. Which I am still undecided about. It is one of the few drivers that at address doesn’t sit closed to my eye. It sits very square and screams hit me. In comparing the shapes of the Rouge and the Flash, the Flash appears smaller and taller. The carbon top is one of my favorite looks and this one doesn’t disappoint. Callaway employed a super computer to design the perfect face. 15,000 different faces were created, what would have taken 34 years on this PC, to find the right one. Did it work? Is it faster than humanly possible? Does the sliding weight add to ball control? Does the new carbon crown deliver more forgiveness? Or are all these claims just part of the never-ending marketing machine that is equipment manufacturers? Whatever the answers are I am super stoked to find out. With my schedule as it is, I will be spending extensive time on the range (something I’ve never done) to unearth these answers. I am very curious to see work ability and how the sliding weight changes the dynamics of the club. Of course, there will be many rounds played as well, it will even get some tournament play as the season is about to kick off in earnest. Let me know if there is anything specific you would like to see. Quote Edit
  32. 14 points
    Gotta say, this was a very profound statement. I'm long-ish too, but I've been struggling to find my identity on the course. Too often, I pull Iron, Hybrid, 3 Wood, ANYTHING BUT DRIVER trying to out think the course and play to the corners instead of over them. Since I'm reviewing a driver anyway, I forced myself out of my comfort zone yesterday and hit driver 12 times. Wouldn't you know it, I'm in no more trouble than when I play the finesse game, plus I'm way closer to the hole if I miss. The game is much easier (and more fun) with shorter second shots. ......plus, it doesn't hurt that the G410 Plus is a straight beast. Here's some highlights: Edit: I guess I should point out that my ball flight is not a draw. So those shots where I cut dogleg left carried a bunch of risk with the tree lines.
  33. 14 points
    Wrapped up the trip today withca round at Troon North. What an experience. One of the most beautiful courses ive ever played. Heres a few pics that I also posted in another thread.
  34. 14 points
    Not my best score tho, but best ball striking ever. Shot a -1 70, 37/33. 4 birds, 3 bogies. And it was a bit windy too. One of the things that I think was helpful was choking up another inch on ALL clubs. Squaring up on driver and hitting the inside of the back of the ball. Stoopid long cuz I was nailing them all right in the sweet spot. iron play and the wedges were tight. I started using a shorter backswing, and a slight inside out 3/4 swing that was again, right in the sweet spot. I tried it after watching a lot of the pros hitting it that way this last weekend. A little draw every time, and fairly easy to predict. putting was decent, but I could have really gone low if I could have dropped a few that were so close. So, needless to say, I enjoyed the day, but the trick will be to see if I can keep that same swing going tomorrow with similar results. Have you had a great day lately?
  35. 14 points
    I ran into the guy yesterday, he flagged me down when I was headed to #10 and he just finished 18. He apologized, said he had just hit a bad shot and seeing me waiting in the fairway set him off for some reason. He asked me to join him as part of his Saturday morning group. I accepted the apology but I’m all set as far as playing with the dude. Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy
  36. 14 points
    In Phoenix for a couple days and got a chance to play a sporty little excutive course with AZSTU324 today. Great time and to say my first experience with desert golf was an adventure would be accurate. Stu has one powerful move and hits the ball higher than anybody I've ever seen. And long too!!
  37. 14 points
    Lucky duck! A few pieces of advice (chronologically ideal itinerary): 1. Leave your phone in the car (I believe this is still policy). 2. Don't run... period (wear your most comfortable walking shoes). 3. Get your pic taken in front of the clubhouse (the longest line you'll stand in all day... more on "queuing" at Augusta National later) 4. Head over to the most beautiful driving range on Earth and it will give some idea who's currently on property for practice rounds and you can decide who to follow around. 4. Take a ton of pictures/video with your digital camera (extra battery/memory card is worthwhile). Nowhere will you find people more understanding of a request to take your pic in front of something picturesque. 5. As @Shankster and @GolfSpy Stroker have suggested, take full advantage of the last place on earth where concession prices are stuck in 80s. Last time I was there in '14, sandwiches cost $2. And cool Masters logo'd non-perishables like the mini moonpies pictured below were $1. They also serve beverages in nice year marked plastic cups that will bring you joy for years to come every time you open your cupboard, provided you don't throw them away... hint, hint. But lay off the $3 beers until you've made a full lap around the course. At the end of the day, seriously load up on the sealed concession foodstuffs. Your friends, family, customers will flip out over them and they only cost you a buck. 6. If like me, you have a long list of people begging for Masters merchandise, take advantage of the on-site UPS shipping center next to the Pro Shop and you won't have to worry about carrying around a pile of stuff. 7. Stick around to watch the incredibly coordinated agronomy ballet - it's another show in and of itself. Other than that, have the time of your life. It will feel as if you are walking around in a dream. And it will be over before you know it. Queuing at Augusta National is akin to a slow stroll - there are lines for everything but they _never_ stop moving, it's astoundingly well organized. You'll be surprised how much elevation change there is from the clubhouse down to #16 green - I think it's essential to walk the entire course in order for your first lap but it is a legit hike. Every tournament volunteer you encounter on the course is most likely a Masters historian, fan, veteran attendee - so if you get lost they are a great help _or_ if you don't happen to get lost, enjoy trying to trip one of them up with a Masters trivia question - they are not easily stumped. My blood pressure is dropping just thinking about the place. Finally, I'm sure we'd love to get your unique take, so please report back @plewis!
  38. 14 points
    Still too excited to put into words what this means to me Definitely hope to at least live up to last year's awesomeness and will look to exceed it.
  39. 14 points
    I just literally jumped out of my chair and yelled “yeeeaaahhhhh” The dog is still hiding and my wife come running asking what happened. I told her I was one of five luckiest guys on earth!!! Thank you MGS and Cobra!! Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy
  40. 13 points
    Well... Got lucky recently and won a little giveaway.
  41. 13 points
    My former driver was a G30 so this one is like a dream for me. Both drivers are louder on mis-hits but I'm finding the center of the club face much more often with G410 than I ever did with the G30. Instead of the usual CLANG or PAONG, I'm getting a very satisfying KABLOW BOOOM PIKAEWEEE The rest might feel otherwise comparing it to various OEMs
  42. 13 points
    Hey everybody! It's been a while now since I've posted on this site so I feel like I need to reintroduce myself: My name is Louis and I've been an avid, die-hard golfer since I inherited my dad's golf clubs when he passed away 12 years ago. My Father is the all-time club champion at our local club. I got obsessed with golf equipment early on. I was and still am constantly wanting to learn everything there is about what fits me and why. I would be obsessively researching online what equipment would fit me best but always doubting myself because... let's face it; I'm not a pro fitter. Was I making the right choices? How can I be sure? I realized that my driver seemed to be spinning more than it should be. I was right. I was playing a Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Double Black Diamond with a Kuro Kage tini stiff shaft at 50g. I have a friend who owns an HD golf simulator and grabbed some numbers off of it. I was hovering around 3500 spin and my launch angle was around 9 even though the head was set to 10*. To that extent, I figured I had a negative angle of attack. My ball speed was good though, averaging about 160mph and I was getting around 255-260 carry. In Atlantic Canada where I live, there isn't many options for people who want to get fit. The closest place I could find with certified professional fitters was golf town in Moncton, which is 3 and a half hours away. Screw it, my bday was coming up so I called and was blown away when I was told a fitting was only $40 and that they would wave the charge if I bought the club. I made the appointment for my bday on March 29. My daughter had a volleyball tournament in Moncton that weekend so the plan was get there early and do the fitting. So I got there (and this place is literally heaven). I'm in awe at all the equipment. I brought my driver, shoes, socks (I'm that bad), my TP5x balls and wedges to warm up. After meeting with my fitter Steve and warming up, he set up the GC quad and had me hit shots with my driver. My spin was high, around 3200 but I was shocked that my AOA was actually positive! It played anywhere between level to +2. The other thing that surprised me was my ball speed: 155mph and not 160mph (my friends simulator must be off) First club he assembled for me a a Taylormade M5 with hzrdus smoke shaft in 75g. I could not get the ball up. It was a horrible fit. Steve explained that he usually goes from 1 extreme to another and not to worry. He put that away and brought the Callaway epic Flash Sub Zero with the same shaft but 65g. I was hitting this combo much better. All throughout the fitting, I was swinging very poorly. I was slicing the ball way more than I normally would. I informed Steve that I usually hit a small fade but that I was butt hurt over my ball speed being lower than I had thought. He said this was fine because if the club performs at your worst, imagine what it will do at your best! He then set me up with a ping g410 with a project x evenflow blue 65g shaft. I was constantly hooking the ball. The head weight, he felt, was wrong. Finally he brought in another head (which I didn't look at) with a Atmos black ts 65g shaft. Took 2 swings and was blown away by the feel. I thought it was the regular epic from Callaway but it ended up being the Mizuno ST190. I was shocked! So, numbers wise the Sub Zero and the St190 were the 2 that stood out. He had me hit 5 with each and although my longest drive was with the sub zero, the st190 provided consistent ball speeds. He recommended the Mizuno with the Atmos shaft. Ball speed with the Sub Zero was 155, 148 and a few numbers in between. St190 was 154 or 155. I dropped my spin rate from 31-3200 to a respectable 25-2600. Another thing was that he fit me in a low launch, low spin shaft. Something I would have never even considered since my launch was low (oh my launch angle sits around 10* now) They had a deal going on that they gave you 1.5x more value for trade-ins for a purchase of a new club. I traded my driver, Touredge cb4 3 wood (which I was no longer using) and Touredge xcg6 hybrid and got $160 off the driver. Happy birthday to me I decided for the first time in 12 years I was going to buy a new club. So, the moral of this story guys is if you can get fit - do it. I was a big proponent of not getting fit. To me it was a waste of time. Well I am man enough to admit I was wrong. Go get fit and you will learn so much from the experience. It was so much fun for me that next year I will be going in for a wedge fitting. Go.Get.Fit. Cheers, Lou Sent from my VTR-L09 using MyGolfSpy mobile app
  43. 13 points
    Skytrak!!! Partly influenced by @GolfSpy MPR and his very positive experience as told in his 'Single Digit Project"* quest; I'm also looking to .. among many other things .. sharpen my short game and work on wedge distances. Also splurged on a Real Feel mat to go with it. *EDIT: Ooops.... and also MPR's "Dude .. I'm Getting a SkyTrak" excellent thread on his experience using and learning with the SkyTrak.
  44. 13 points
    Hello, I am Jackie an avid golfer from Minneapolis presently playing to a 7 HI. I have been playing golf for a very long time but was not that serious about how I played until I was in my forties. I play every weekend and love every minute of it. Nothing beats getting outside, enjoy mother nature and shooting my lowest score ever. I am an LPGA Amateur Golf Association member and play with the other women in the group on a regular basis in addition to competing in MGA events. The strength of my game has been my driving the past couple of years. 200 plus yards with a very high percentage of drives between the trees. I have learned to play smarter as I age which has helped me lower my handicap a bit. My putting has been my Achilles heel, but I have been working on it in addition to my short game 40 yards and in. Fixing these two are going to be a key to getting to that coveted 0.0 HI. I tend to hit a medium height soft fade, which puts my usual miss to the right. Occasionally I will double cross myself and hit the big pull to the left- ouch! My swing tempo is probably what you would consider medium or average. Slowing down my back swing is key to hitting the ball consistently. My driver swing speed hovers around 90 MPH and being an AARP member, I don't believe it will be going up much. I am once again working on drawing the ball more consistently, but I have just been unable to master controlling it. I do love the extra 20 to 40 yards off the tee though. The balls I play tournaments with are the Bridgestone B330RX and e6. I usually will use soft balls in the spring before it is 70 and in the fall after my tournaments are over and it has cooled down. Therefore, testing the e12 soft is appealing not to mention the matte yellow color! Bridgestone claims the e12 Soft to have high speed off of the face and low sidespin and that it was designed for golfers with swing speeds less than 105 MPH. To me this sounds like an improved e6 soft with a new name. Not necessarily a bad thing just marketing. My first impression: The e12 Soft in a matte yellow is not so bright that I am unable to focus on it and it does not have that rubbery feel of other soft balls. I played Sunday with the Temps in the high to low thirties and this ball flew! I can’t wait to get out again and to start working on stage 2.
  45. 13 points
    Combined Stage 1 and 2 Placeholder This is looking promising
  46. 13 points
    Making progress Played a short Par 3 this afternoon to work on short irons and wedges; most holes are PW or 9i or 8i off the tee for me, one hole is 6i and one is 54°. Nothing worse than bogey .. a few of those .. and a few pars and one 1-putt birdie (thanks to leaving the flagstick in!). Stupidly, two of the bogeys were from 3 putts (d'oh) after hitting the greens... Kept thinking the greens were slow and BLEW the first putts waaaaay past the holes. Only one badly mis-hit tee shot - pulled it way left but got a very lucky tree branch rebound away from it being lost. Ended up in a bad lie, though, with an awkward stance. But I advanced the ball in the right direction, so happy enough with that. The 6i hole is uphill to an elevated green that you can't see the surface of (can see the flagstick). Tee shot hit the front left corner of the green but bounced off the slope and rolled back. Thought about club and shot selection for the chip on .. hit the 54 crisply and exactly onto my spot .. ball was rolling towards the hole but then hit something that I hadn't seen and turned sharply to the right, away from the hole.... Oh well... Made the putt and my first par on that hole!
  47. 13 points
    Had a few hours to kill in Suburban Chicago yesterday - so a quick call to marketing chief Jon Claffey wound up with a nice tour and demo session at Tour Edge HQ our in Batavia. Tour Edge is owned by David Glod, and has been since he founded the company. Someone once asked David how long it took him to be profitable, to which he famously replied “I’ve been in business 33 years and have been profitable every one of them.” Jon gave me a quick tour of the facility, which houses sales, marketing, R&D, assembly and shipping. David owns the building as well. The assembly section was brilliant - it’s set up for a logical flow from receiving of raw parts through shipping of finished, packaged goods. Jon told me the set up has been designed to handle a 300% increase in sales and they’d only have to add, at most, 15 people. They’re able to turn around custom orders in less than 48 hours. The real treat was on the second floor. There’s a putting and chipping green, as well as three bays equipped with Trackman for fitting. I got to try the full EXS line and was more than impressed. I’ve hit the driver before and it’s an incredible value at $299. The 3 wood was excellent as well, but I did not get along with either the EXS or CBX hybrids at all (then again, hybrids and I have a love/hate relationship anyway). The irons were an eye-opener. As I get older distance is a factor, and in the last year I’ve begun to notice a bit of a distance loss - hell, I’ll be 59 this summer, so it’s to be expected. After warming up I started wailing the bejesus out of the EXS irons, posting some numbers that made me feel young again. That’s with the 7-iron. It had a regular flex Tensei Graphite shaft, which didn’t hurt - and it had a 27.5* loft, which also didn’t hurt. But the spin, trajectory and decent were all what you’d want in a 7-iron. For reference, I’m usually around 160 with a 7-iron. With the 5-iron I was right around 200-205. As for the hybrids, I was not liking them much - at best I was hitting an 18 degree right around 205 - same as the EXS 5-iron, so there would be no point in bagging one. Did much better with driving irons. Got to try their forged blades, too. The difference in tech and loft was remarkable - 34 degree loft was going right around 150. Do I need a set that goes 20 to 30 yards farther than what I have? No. Do I want one? You bet your ass! TE putters are pretty basic and truth be told, non-description, and their wedges are solid and head heavy, like the old Hogan Rivieras, which I also like. TE is pretty proud of their fitting studio - rightfully so - and they even rent it out over the winter to local club pros for lessons. They’re installing an R&D robot right next to the studio, which should be pretty interesting to see. Jon told me they’ll have lunchtime and after hours chipping and putting tourneys on the putting green, and have given some the holes some R-rated names [emoji41][emoji41][emoji41]. Anyway, it’s always cool to see different OEM HQ’s - Tour Edge is by no means big (the facility is much smaller than the Srixon/Cleveland HQ, for example), but it’s right-sized for where their business is now, and they’re well-prepped for future growth. Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy
  48. 13 points
    Linda - 25 handicap March 30, 2019 - Marti Golf Center (Houston, TX) I'm learning so much from reading MyGolfSpy and my D7 challenge experience added to that. The main knowledge I came away with is I still have much to learn. And I need new clubs! The Marti Golf Center driving range was in good shape. The grass in the area roped off for Wilson was green, thick and fluffy - very nice. Being a custom tradeshow exhibit designer, presentation is important to me. The Wilson rep, John Lentz, was running a little late, but he was hustling so I'll give him a pass in the organization department. I actually helped set up his canopy tent and then hit balls to warm up while he got settled. He had a good inventory of Wilson clubs and equipment, but the D7 line was the only offering for us gals. John was knowledgeable and patient in answering all of my questions (I ask a lot of questions). A Norther decided to blow in as we were getting started bringing a light rain and a change in wind direction. We pulled all of his equipment under the canopy tent but I stood in the drizzle to hit. To start John had me hit my Ping Serene 7 iron, followed by the ladies version of the D7. The launch monitor data showed an average distance (carry) gain of 11 yards gain. I thought the smash factor information was really interesting. John explained (1.34) represented the most efficient contact on the D7s. My numbers didn't hit that exactly but all my swings were close. The most fantastic discovery for me was the difference in dispersion with the D7 - longer and straighter. Toward the end of my session, I also tried out the ladies D7 driver. We didn't track those shots but they appeared to fly at least as far as my Ping Serene driver. But again, delightfully straighter. John told me that technology has progressed rapidly in the last several years since my Pings were made. He took the time to explain the technology and physics behind why the D7s are longer and straighter. I really liked everything about them. For being a good sport about the weather and helping him set up, John gave me two Wilson D7 golf caps. They are much too large for me but fit my husband perfectly. He also gave me 7 two-ball sleeves of Wilson Duo Soft balls! Three for me and four to share with the ladies in one of my regular play groups. On the way home from Houston that night, I discussed golf clubs with my husband. One of my questions - how can I realistically try out several different club brands being so far away from a big retailer? He said that in his men's groups they regularly hit each others' clubs for that very reason. When I share my D7 challenge experience and Wilson balls with my friends, my first question will be - "May I please hit your driver?" Above is the Wilson setup. John answering one of my many questions. John explaining about tracking data. I did not feel like the D7s are clunky. But you can see the sole on my Pings are even wider. A topside comparison with my Pings. Sorry, my dog poked her nose in the photo. Wish I could have tried out every one of these! Above is the ladies D7 Driver. The dots on the club are not part of the design, those are water spots from the rain.
  49. 13 points
    It's too early for this to be an April Fool's joke, right? Holy cow this is going to be awesome (and a lot of work)!
  50. 13 points
    STAGE ONE: Tester Introduction {3/27/19} I can’t begin without first sending a big, huge “THANK YOU!!!” to MyGolfSpy and Bridgestone Golf for this opportunity. I believe wholeheartedly in the MGS mission to provide unbiased, independent reviews supported by data. Though my own review may be lacking by comparison, I will do my best to remain objective and provide numbers where I can. About Me: I am a 5’11”, 240lb, 32 years old, male currently living in Joplin, Missouri with my wife and two kids. My home track is Carthage Golf Course in Carthage, MO where I’ve been developing my game for several years now. Last season I made some changes that helped me go from a 15~ handicap to a 10.6. Though still struggling a bit with consistency, I fully intend to drive that down even more this season. About My Game: The long game and putting have almost always been strengths for me, but approach shots and wedges are where I’ve encountered the most trouble. Over the years, I’ve devoted more time to this aspect of my game and have learned to hit a variety of shots. I’ve established good layup distances and scores are constantly improving as a result. I love to be creative when the opportunity presents itself, but I also try to be realistic – I weigh the risks and go for the low score. Most importantly, I’ve learned to love my wedges. My Swing- (video to come) Last season, I started taking the club back a bit slower before making the quick transition to the downswing which seems to work well for me. However, I do rush the takeaway sometimes if I’m not careful - moving the club too far to the inside on the way back and getting a bit stuck. I also currently struggle with a weak ball flight as I tend to present too much loft at impact and often short-side myself – especially into wind. WITB- Driver – PING G25 3-Wood – Titleist 906 F2 Hybrid – Nike Vapor Flex Irons – Nike Vapor Pro Combo Wedges – Vokey SM5 Putter – Scotty Cameron Futura 6m Everything in my bag up to this point (minus putter and hybrid) were purchased second hand off eBay and have been adjusted for loft and lie as needed. My Wedges- My current set of Vokeys consists of a 52° F Grind with 8° bounce, 56° S Grind with 10° bounce, and a 60° M Grind with 8° bounce. Conditions in my area tend to play on the firm side most of the year and this setup works well for that. My preferred layup distance is around 85 yards which is perfect for my SW. Unfortunately, I bought my SM5’s before I decided on irons and I currently have a 6-degree gap between my PW and my GW. It’s not a huge problem, but I’ve wanted to try a different setup for a while to see if I’d notice any differences. Bridgestone Tour B XW-1 First Impressions: What’s New?- As mentioned in the MGS article (February 1, 2019), Bridgestone received some not so great feedback on the protruding mass placed on the back of the previous model XW-1 wedge. Though sound and feel were reportedly good on center hits, anything off-center had a distinctively different sound and feel. This year, Bridgestone removed the mass and made a few other tweaks to the club’s appearance as shown. Along with a new look, Bridgestone has introduced three loft-specific sole grinds to accommodate various situations and style of play. They also got rid of the black-oxide finish and swapped the stock shaft from the DG Spinner to the Modus 3 105. The one thing that seems to stay in line with last year’s model is the additional face milling – now called “Biting Rail Milling”. Unboxing- I was eager to see these wedges in person and I must say, they don’t disappoint. Personally though, I liked the cleaner look of last year’s model better – especially the black-oxide. Still, the Tour B XW-1 has what I would consider a very traditional wedge shape similar to my gamers. The finish is quite nice and the club sits well at address with less offset than the SM5’s. I opted for a 50, 54, 58 set to close the gap between my irons and wedges as mentioned before. Unlike Titleist though, Bridgestone has a limited selection of grind and bounce options available and with these lofts, those options are: F Grind with 10° bounce, M Grind with 10° bounce, and M Grind with 8° bounce. I would have liked to try the A Grind for my 54 as it is most similar to the Vokey S Grind. Unfortunately, Bridgestone only offers the A Grind in a 56° wedge with 10° bounce. To order a 56° and bend it to 54° would mean reducing the bounce more than I’d like. I really hope Bridgestone will consider adding a few options to alleviate this as well as some high-bounce options for those who play in softer conditions or have a tendency to dig. While initial impressions have largely been positive, I do have some minor complaints to report also… Two of the three grips are poorly aligned and two of the three heads appear to have a bit of an abrasion on the sole. Neither are particularly bothersome, but should be noted for full disclosure. Despite the issues mentioned, the clubs feel good in my hands and give me confidence I could put these straight in the bag with no trouble. Testing: Most of my testing will be done on the course using Game Golf to collect stats against the SM5’s, but they will also be put to test on the range and at my course’s short game practice area. Likewise, I’ve already hit up the course pro for launch monitor access so I can collect a bit of data for you guys. I have plenty of golf scheduled for 2019 including some competitive rounds so stay tuned for Part II…
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