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Quick impressions of the 915d3, R15, and Aeroburner

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I took a trip to my state's best driving range and fitting shop, Golf in the Round, where they'll let you demo anything you want to your heart's content for $10.   So I got a chance to try out the 915d3, the R15 and the Aeroburner for about a half a bucket each.   Once again I learned the importance of actually hitting things, because all my preconceived notions were overturned.   What I thought I'd like, I didn't and what I thought I wouldn't care for, I did.   The pro seemed to have the same impression, because as I took all three to the range, he said, "You'll be surprised ... the cheapest one is the best club."

 

Here are my quick impressions, feel free to add yours.

 

Titleist 915d3, 9.5 with Aldila Rogue 110 MSI 60 gram Stiff, standard length --  This was the club I most hungered to hit ... and I hated it.  It is not a particularly small looking head, although it's noticeably smaller than the d2 (which I didn't hit).   It's attractrive and I'm very used to the Rogue 110 in the 60 stiff (I have this in my Optiforce at present).   But I had a VERY hard time hitting center face with this stick.   I'd hit a couple low and heely, then adjust and hit a couple high and toey, then adjust again, and hit low and heely again.   It was very frustrating and out of about 30 balls, I'd guess that I only hit 2-3 that even came close to the center of the face.   (I used Dr. Scholl's to mark every shot).   After about 5 - 7 bad strikes, I pulled out my current driver and danged if I wasn't close to center face instantly.   It got so bad that I started to monkey with my swing and I even talked to the pro about it.   He said, "I had that same thing happen to me with the i25.  I couldn't figure it out, just move on."   So I did.   Needless to say, I did not like the feel and results were awful.    But they were pretty straight awful.   The straightness I attributed to the Rogue.  The head felt oddly light and tinny.  Very different from the 913.    This was the worst of the three challengers for me.   Launch was medium, spin -  who knows, distance - sucky.

 

R15, 10.5 degree, Speeder 57 shaft in stiff, standard length -   The R15 is a very different club than the SLDR.   First of all, gone is the need to loft up.   The R15 launches like the stated loft indicates.  I had to hit a 12 degree SLDR before the launch became decent.  This black crown one launched a bit high in 10.5 set to neutral standard.   I tested it primarily in 'stability' mode, meaning with the weights all the way to the far extremes.   They spread much farther apart than the SLDR, but I didn't notice too much difference from when I left them both in the center.   It felt like it had a hotter, spinnier face than the SLDR and I don't know if this is a good or bad thing.   Unlike with the 915, I had no problems finding the center of the face from my first swing to my last.  This so confused me that I went back to the 915 and hit a few more -- all badly.   Anyway, with the r15 I hit some soaring hooks, followed by some soaring slices, something I never did with the SLDR.   The SLDR was always a little low and predictable for me, with draws that skipped along until they stopped.   This R15 was left-right-left-right and I had little control and no predictability.   I think the stock Speeder was a bad fit for me and I think I'll try my preferred Z-com and see what it does in a 9.5 loft.   Face feel was good however and the sound was good.

 

Aeroburner, 10.5 with their stock Matrix 50 gram stiff, standard length.   I don't like white heads, but this one has slimming lines and a sharkskin finish that mute the whiteness of it.   I didn't mind the looks at address.  However, the looks on the bottom were garish and cheap.   It looks like a kids club smeared with lipstick.   It's uglier in person than in photos.    The problem is..... I actually liked hitting it.   The face seemed hot and while I hit it too high, the feedback it gave me indicated that there was more in the tank.   Easy to hit, easy to find the center of the face.   It was the longest of the three and the most comfortable.  I'd love to try this one again with a 9.5 loft and a bit longer shaft.   I'm so used to longer shafts now that anything less than 46 feels too short and requires an adjustment.   Sadly, the Aeroburner is glued-shaft only, so you'd better know exactly what you need or get fit ahead of time, because you've got to dance with the gal you brung to the hop on this one.

 

In conclusion, sadly none of these clubs felt better, were longer, straighter, or more reliable than my current Optiforce gamer with any one of the 3 shafts I have for it (Zcom tw74, Rogue 95, or Rogue 110).   I'd like to tinker with the R15 a bit more, and I'd try the Aeroburner in a different loft, but I don't think I'll bother to try the 915 again.


bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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The graphics on the Aeroburner just kill it for me. If I could paint the whole thing matte black I'd be interested in trying it.


Driver -  :taylormade-small: M1 9.5* w/ Aldila Rogue Silver 70X

Fairway -   :taylormade-small: M1 5W 19* w/ Aldila Rogue Silver 70X

Hybrids -   :ping-small: G25 4H 23*

Irons -  :mizuno-small: JPX 850 Forged 4-PW w/ Nippon N.S. Pro 1150S

Wedges - :mizuno-small: S5 50*07, 54*12, 58*12 w/ Nippon N.S. Pro 1150S

Putter - Oddyssey Metal-X #7 w/ SuperStroke Pistol GT 2.0

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Thanks for your impressions.

I sometimes wonder with these adjustable hosels if the settings place the shaft in the head at an orientation that is less than ideal and just makes it that much harder to hit center face and you're fighting a spine in the shaft the whole time. It's always been the one big question mark I've had with these.


"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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Thanks for your impressions.

I sometimes wonder with these adjustable hosels if the settings place the shaft in the head at an orientation that is less than ideal and just makes it that much harder to hit center face and you're fighting a spine in the shaft the whole time. It's always been the one big question mark I've had with these.

 

 

That is a good question and I don't know the answer.   The Titleist and Callaway systems both allow you to orient the shaft in one direction regardless of how you turn the cogs and this d3  had its Rogue in the graphics down position, but I did get the impression I was fighting it the whole time.   I did NOT play with the hosel adapters in either the 915 or the R15 because I didn't have quite enough time and my prelimary results didn't justify it in either case.  I couldn't hit a ball center face with the 915, so I had no good data to adjust against.   With the R15 I had some relatively high and very curvy shots, so I knew I had to come down in loft but with a different shaft.

 

With the Aeroburner, how do you test for different shafts besides going to a real fancy studio where they have quick connects for everything?   All the regular joints are just going to have stock retail crap shafts for this low end club.  Oh well, live and learn.


bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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Yeah, I've had some aftermarket Aldilas SST Pured over the years or spined and flo'd, and they have never come out logo down. Very well could have been fighting the shaft spine(s.)

If they had another of the same shaft to try, would have been interesting to swap it out to see if it made a difference.


"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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The only one of these I have tested is the 915. I wanted to like it. I did not. I thought the smash factor was unusually low. Swings with the same launch and spin as the g30 left balls shorter and further away from center.


<p><strong>D:</strong>    :ping-small:   9* G400 Max w/Xcalibur TSL</p><p> </p><p><strong>F: </strong>  :callaway-small: 14* XR Pro 16 w/Hzrdous Red</p><p><strong>I:</strong>   :edel-golf-1: SLS-01 4-SW w/Paderson SL</p><p><strong>W:</strong>   :edel-golf-1: DGR 59 w/Dynamic Gold SL</p><p><strong>P:</strong> Artisan 0318 or Edel TB</p><p> 

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I found the same thing with the new 915d and both Taylormade drivers. I was eager to get my hands on one of the 915's at the local Golfsmith when they came out then headed to Golf Galaxy for the Taylormade's. Not that Golfsmith didn't have the Taylormade that day I just didn't think of it. Out of the group the 915 performed the best and felt solid of the face but in all honesty it didn't seem and different from my 913d. The driver I was most impressed with however was the new Ping i30 but wish they kept the racing stripes that the i25 has. The Ping i30 outperformed all drivers and made me rethink about my 913 yet the i25 pushed them all aside and said let me show you something. Monitor proved the i25 was an absolute monster and seeing that its 2014's model it was about $200 cheaper.

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Titleist AP1 irons

Titleist 913D 7.5 Degree, Stiff Speeder Tour Spec 6.2 Shaft

Wedges: Taylormade 60 d Titleist Vokey 54,56,58

Seemore Mallet Putter

Right Handed

Apple Valley, MN

8 Handicap

10885218_10205856139265562_6140026354236

 

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That shows you how individual this driver stuff is.   I didn't like the i25 at all, except for the stripes, which I liked.  I liked the G30 for it's straightness and reliability, but it wasn't very long for me.   The 913d2 was the straightest and most forgiving driver I've hit in a long while, but it was short so I reluctantly canned it.  

 

It's probably all about the shaft and the swingweight.   If I get something that feels too light or too heavy, I can't return it to square, then I get more off center hits and the poor club can only do so much with my off center hits.   Other clubs I'm able to return to center more easily, so naturally the contact is better and I end up thinking the club is better.   For all I know, they could be equal, but I'll never be able to tell on the clubs I can't hit center face.

 

One thing I am sure of, the Aldila Rogues are very straight hitting shafts regardless of tempo.  I usually start out slow and build SS over the round.   I played today and by the end of the day I was really striping it, my best drive on 18.  With no one around I put down another ball and striped it too.   I hit four drives on 18 and all four were clustered around the 150 pole in a circle with a radius of about 5 yards.   I don't think I've ever done that before.  However, they weren't particularly long.

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bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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Was near a Golf Galaxy today so I ducked in for a little bit. Lotta friendly service all to myself. 4:1.

I haven't swung a club since November and didn't want to go into traction, so I just snooped around.

G30 looks pretty solid, but the face tech will tell the story, not the fins. R15 just looked a little gimmicky? (Sorry.) Cobra FlyZ+ was pretty sharp at address, and I keep looking at the D3 of the Titleists. They had a SM C130S that I got to toss onto a Clicgear 3.5 and it fit on there nicely, so that very well may be the bag for me. Seems versatile.

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"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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Was near a Golf Galaxy today so I ducked in for a little bit. Lotta friendly service all to myself. 4:1.

I haven't swung a club since November and didn't want to go into traction, so I just snooped around.

G30 looks pretty solid, but the face tech will tell the story, not the fins. R15 just looked a little gimmicky? (Sorry.) Cobra FlyZ+ was pretty sharp at address, and I keep looking at the D3 of the Titleists. They had a SM C130S that I got to toss onto a Clicgear 3.5 and it fit on there nicely, so that very well may be the bag for me. Seems versatile.

That's a good bag cart combo.   Love the SM bags, don't like their carts.  Clic's are more robust


bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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That's a good bag cart combo.   Love the SM bags, don't like their carts.  Clic's are more robust

I feel the same way. My current SM Speed Cart Bag DLX is a great bag. I liked that the C-130S seems to sit on the stand mech in the bottom bag bracket, whereas my present bag has that cutout in the bottom to accomodate the SM Cart brackets and it makes it fall down a bit and rub on the front wheel sometimes. I've been a ClicGear/SM guy for many years now. Best combo for me too. Oh-Ping Traverse was on the list to check out, and I did, but it seemed of lesser quality than I was expecting. Little disappointed there. Oh well.


"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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I went back to the range and hit the R15 again in 9.5 and a Speeder 665 stiff shaft.   No trouble hitting center face.   It was different feeling than the stock 57, much better, but everything went right or faded with it.  Odd.   Then I swapped in my old reliable Fujikura Zcom TW74 low torque regular.   BOOM, huge improvement in direction and distance.   Say no more, that Zcom shaft just fits me, as I've reconfirmed a dozen times now, no need to go anywhere else but I keep on testing.

 

I am convinced of two things with the R15 -   1) it launches true to spec, no loft up needed.  Or rather you don't start from a super low deficit that must be compensated for.   And 2) moving the weights doesn't really do very much.  I swung both over to far draw position and still hit fades with it.  Oh well.   I'm done with the R15.   It's okay, but no pressing need to change.   The Opti still beat it, even with my favorite shaft.


bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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I am convinced of two things with the R15 - 1) it launches true to spec, no loft up needed. Or rather you don't start from a super low deficient that must be compensated for. And 2) moving the weights doesn't really do very much. I swung both over to far draw position and still hit fades with it. Oh well. I'm done with the R15. It's okay, but no pressing need to change. The Opti still beat it, even with my favorite shaft.

Guys are blind buying R15 in the same specs as SLDR's and selling them for cheap. Great time to be a high loft driver player!

 

Not wanting to derail too much. Having to "loft up" completely caught tmag off guard. I don't think they realized that would be side effect. Now that they have completely gone away from it. It's pretty clear no one in management knows wtf they are doing.

 

They blew a ton of marketing last year convincing people to buy higher lofts. That's all wasted now that lofting up gets you moon balls. Irresponsible, stupid, and wasteful.


<p><strong>D:</strong>    :ping-small:   9* G400 Max w/Xcalibur TSL</p><p> </p><p><strong>F: </strong>  :callaway-small: 14* XR Pro 16 w/Hzrdous Red</p><p><strong>I:</strong>   :edel-golf-1: SLS-01 4-SW w/Paderson SL</p><p><strong>W:</strong>   :edel-golf-1: DGR 59 w/Dynamic Gold SL</p><p><strong>P:</strong> Artisan 0318 or Edel TB</p><p> 

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It's not often I put a club down into address position and say, "wow, I never want to see that again."

Such was my reaction to the Aeroburner 3W on Monday. Wow, that is one ugly club.


"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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Guys are blind buying R15 in the same specs as SLDR's and selling them for cheap. Great time to be a high loft driver player!

 

Not wanting to derail too much. Having to "loft up" completely caught tmag off guard. I don't think they realized that would be side effect. Now that they have completely gone away from it. It's pretty clear no one in management knows wtf they are doing.

 

They blew a ton of marketing last year convincing people to buy higher lofts. That's all wasted now that lofting up gets you moon balls. Irresponsible, stupid, and wasteful.

 

You are right, but it was absolutely essential that they did what they did.

 

I well remember when the SLDR was announced in mid-2013.  I bought a 9.5 in August and greedily tried it out.  I could not get the damn thing airborne and I turned the hosel all the way up.   I sold it quickly and carped on blogs (not this one) about how low it launched.  I was not alone.   December rolls around and TMag launches the Loft Up campaign -- AS IF THEY MEANT TO DO IT ALL ALONG!    I started complaining about how they musta gotten consumer feedback about what a low slinging hammer it was and they realized they had to do something fast in order to move product because they were committed to the SLDR as a flagship.   That other blog and its owner (which will not be named by me but which is in THe Pocket of manufacturers as a marketing outlet) slammed me fast for insinuating such a thing, saying that TMag was a wise and powerful company and it had been saying all along that you had to loft up.   I produced TMag marketing graphics from Aug 2013 showing that they actually touted it as a HI Launching driver at the beginning,  I got slammed even more.   Finally, I saw what was up and came here, largely because you can express your opinions without veto by the owner or the need to respect OEM marketing "embargoes".    (BTW, later on I tried a SLDR 12 degree and I thought it was fine, so no dis on the SLDR from me.)

 

My point is that Loft Up was needed to save the SLDR, but in the process it also killed the Jetspeed, which did NOT need to be lofted up.   I also remember that back in late 2013 when you could also get 8.5 SLDR's for a song because they made them early in the production run, but no one could hit them and they either didn't sell or got returned.  

 

Funny how you never needed to loft up with a single TMag driver before the SLDR, or a single one since, or with any driver made by any other manufacturer, but "Loft Up" became a mantra for awhile, not just a quick fix for one quirky club to mask an OEM mistake?   I'm not drinking that Kool-aid, no thanks.  

 

You'll see nary a mention of Loft Up from TMag ever again.

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bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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SLDR at first seemed like it would be all about the sliding weight side to side to adjust CG. But then the front forward CG thing took off by necessity. It was two directions at once, but they needed to lead with "loft up" because that was the most crticial message. R15 as a namesake at least doesn't lead the consumer into one concept only to be all about another all together. No one built a club like SLDR because they know its harder to hit. Sometimes a confused consumer is a lucrative customer. They've had more than one release that was hard to hit followed up by an easier to hit version shortly thereafter. Be it sheer cc's in head volume or other facets. Like R1's "one loft." Uggh. Talk about taking a hard right and going in a totally different direction back to back models between that and SLDR.

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"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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I had the same experience as you.  I was wondering why a certain article had been written and why Cleveland stuff was being pushed hard onto the "followers" and I got an earful from everyone on that site.  Needless to say, I don't visit that site too often any more.  This site and others are run much more openly.

 

That other blog and its owner (which will not be named by me but which is in THe Pocket of manufacturers as a marketing outlet) slammed me fast for insinuating such a thing, saying that TMag was a wise and powerful company and it had been saying all along that you had to loft up.   

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I had the same experience as you.  I was wondering why a certain article had been written and why Cleveland stuff was being pushed hard onto the "followers" and I got an earful from everyone on that site.  Needless to say, I don't visit that site too often any more.  This site and others are run much more openly.

 

They don't just do it with one brand, although Cally is their primary shot-caller.   They seem to morph from hot item to hot item depending on how sweet their latest sponsored boondoggle excursion is.   And the owner is ACTIVE in the forums countering any expressed opinion he doesn't like or that doesn't march to his tune.  What's amazing to me is how quickly his core group of about 20 disciples get in line after the official dogma is passed down.   No one wants to rock the boat or interrupt the flow of free goodies and it quickly becomes a game of "shout down the outsider".

 

Don't get me wrong, we have some favorite clubs and brands among a few of the guys here.   Lots of Scor guys here because one guy turned another guy onto them etc.   But no one has ever passed any envelopes under the table to anyone that I know of and X has never once told me to shut up or really even commented on anything I've said, pro or con to anything.  As it should be.


bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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The SLDR is the classic example of what I mentioned in a ball thread.  I bag the stupid thing so I certainly do not have a bias against it.

 

But for crying out loud, this was a new technology that showed promise for a certain swing type - someone with a highly positive AOA can make that thing pop - it works for my swing.  I was unaware of the issues with that early release but who cares really?  Isn't that what early releases and testing are about?  But TMag seems to jettison things so quickly rather than letting them simmer - good ideas and possibly beneficial technologies are never fully developed.

 

The same thing happened with a product that I hated - the square driver - there were issues, noise and looks but their were benefits - the possibility of being easier to hit and more accuracy.  Rather than working the technology the large OEM's let it drop.

 

It's a disturbing trend IMO.


Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

SCOR 48,52,56,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

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With the square drivers, they're able to shift CG's so that they don't have to be square in shape. It did demostrate the concept visually which was like a sales aid, but it didn't do anything for performance being square beyond other methods shifting CG's via different materials, etc. In fact, at the time, I seem to recall reading analysis that square was counter-productive for how the head rotated during the swing. I think it was short-lived for a reason, and the Nike's brash *cough* sound helped the exodus.

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"Glute Activator"

 

*Please accept my contributions of participation and intellectual property sharing as substitute for monetary renumeration.

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