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Steel or Graphite?

Steel or Graphite Shafts  

53 members have voted

  1. 1. What type shaft do you have on your irons?

    • Steel
      28
    • Graphite
      19
    • Combination
      6


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I really need to trial a few irons with composite shafts.  I've hit a couple over the years as friends have acquired them, but never in a focused/comparative review.  How are you liking the KZG irons?  My fitter in Bozeman just added them to his inventory of mfg's.  I plan on testing them later this spring.



I’m on my 5th set of KZG’s now. I’ve had two sets of the Forged Blades and 3 sets of the Forged Cavity Backs (capitalized as those are the model names). I’ve strayed and tried other clubs but the Forged Cavity gives me everything I want in a club so I think I’ve come back for good.

KZG quality really is second to none. They make some beautiful forged irons that have a clean appearance, which I like. They are a little different now as where they were previously forged in Japan by Kyoei, they are now forged in China. The Kyoei forged irons are the most incredible feeling irons I’ve ever hit. They are forged of S25c carbon steel, and while I’m not sure what steel the new Chinese forgings are, they do not feel as good as the Kyoei forgings.

I’d say give them a swing at your fitter though. They are top quality clubs.


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Yes I voted steel ,but I have to admit that new synergy graphite "well fitted" are spot on.

Since new tech engineers have made a lot of research . I am now charmed by the new Synergy shafts ,lenght wise and very precise.

Tested with Callaway #7 iron ,Rogue Pro,fitted 1/4 + longer.

Edited by M.Duchesne
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I bought a set of no name custom irons with graphite shafts about 11 years ago when I was maybe playing twice a year. When I started playing again in 2017 I only considered graphite. I’ll never switch back.


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PXG Gen1 0811X 12° driver w/Project X Evenflow Blue 55g shaft
Maltby KE4 TC 16° 4 wood w/Kuro Kage Black 60g shaft
Maltby KE4 TC 19° 3 hybrid w/UST Proforce V2 Black shaft
Tour Edge Bazooka Platinum 23° Ironwood w/UST for TE graphite shaft
Tour Edge HL4 5-6 Ironwood w/UST for TE graphite shafts
Maltby KE4 Tour+ irons 7-GW w/UST Competition Series graphite shafts
Gigagolf S2 52° and 56° wedges w/UST for Gigagolf graphite shafts
Tommy Armour Impact #3 putter

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Not trying to be that guy, but I just feel way more consistent with steel shaft irons. Had fly z graphite irons and couldn't ever seem to be consistent with them, went to steel stiff and found a much better groove. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

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:cobra-small: F7 Driver

:cobra-small: Fly Z+ 3 and 5 wood

:cobra-small: F9 irons 5 thru GW

:cobra-small: King Black Wedges 52/56/60

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I’ve only had Steelfiber, so not exactly graphite, and I’ve tried some Recoils a couple times, but I’ve not found a graphite yet that can give me as tight of a dispersion as steel. I can’t afford the high end shafts that are out now in graphite, so cant speak to those.


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Driver: :honma: TR20 460, :Fuji: Ventus Black 70X

Fwy: :titelist-small: TS3, 15*, Veylix Rome 888 X

Hybrid: :callaway-small: X2 Hot Pro, 20*, :Fuji: Rombax 8D07HB TM27 X

Irons: :srixon-small: Z585 4/5 iron, Z785 6-PW, :Nippon:Modus 120X

Wedges: Vega VW-06 50*/54*/58*, Dynamic Gold S400

Putter: :seemore-small: Platinum M5 HT Mallet, 36"

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Well, I tested a couple of graphite shafts last week at my iron fitting.  Ping Alta CB and another which I forgot the brand (UST I think) - both with the G410 7i.  Neither of them worked as well as the AWT 2.0 steel.  On the Alta CB, my ball speed lowered from 100.6 to 98.6, backspin increased from 6291 to 6836, side spinspin increased from 1664.0 to 1989.2, and carry went down from 143.4 to 138.1.  They felt pretty good and did seem to dampen vibration a little. 


:ping-small: G410 Plus, 9 Degree Driver | Official 2019 MGS Tester

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 16 Degree 3w

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 19 Degree 5w

:ping-small: G410 Irons 4-UW 

:ping-small: Glide 2.0 56 Degree SW   (removed from double secret probation 😍)

:ping-small: B61 Putter

 

 

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... Unless you are very young, still growing and your body can take the pounding, I don't see why anyone would play steel shafts in their irons. About 20 years ago I decided to "master" knockdown shots because it gets very windy in Chicago. Every shot I hit that fall was a knockdown, even off the tee, I used an iron. By the time the season was ending I felt very comfortable flighting my irons down but I developed a nasty case of elbow tendonitis because they don't water in the fall and the ground was usually very hard. Not a smart move in retrospect. Thankfully my Ortho was a golfer and told me I needed to take 5 months off, then start playing graphite in my irons in the Spring. 

... Luckily for me Aldila had just released their NV Tour irons at 130gms and only 1.5* of torque. VJ Singh was using them on tour. I was playing DGS300's and the NV Tour profile was designed to be very similar. A very stout graphite shaft, it worked for me but was a little more shaft than I needed, but my choices were slim to none. The next year Aldila released the NV Pro shaft at 105gms and they were better for me in every way. A year or 2 later the released their VS Proto 100's and they fit me even better! Since 130 to 105 to 100 worked so well, I tried some VS Proto 85's but they turned out to be too light for me. Seems 95-100 is my sweet spot. Skipping ahead I have tried many different graphite shafts in my irons and now play Recoil Prototype 95's and they are the best iron shafts I have hit. 

... The good news is there is a graphite iron shaft for everyone from Recoil 125 Prototypes for the strongest players to 65gm lightweight shafts for the play that needs more distance and a higher trajectory. There are also different levels of feel from very firm feeling Steelfibers to more dampened feeling Recoils to very soft feeling OEM shafts. You have done yourself a disservice if you have only tried one graphite iron shaft and decided they aren't for you. I played 107 days out of 118 days in Phoenix this past winter and I would have never been able to do that with steel. Obviously graphite reduces stress on joints for those with a myriad of injuries, but even a healthy golfer is adding undue stress and vibration to their joints if they play steel. Lastly with the cost of premium steel rivaling graphite:  Modus 3 - $37 with Recoil 95's - $44 and SmacWrap - $39... there isn't a huge difference in price.

Edited by chisag
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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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12 minutes ago, chisag said:

... Unless you are very young, still growing and your body can take the pounding, I don't see why anyone would play steel shafts in their irons. About 20 years ago I decided to "master" knockdown shots because it gets very windy in Chicago. Every shot I hit that fall was a knockdown, even off the tee where I use an iron. By the time the season was ending I felt very comfortable flighting my irons down but I developed a nasty case of elbow tendonitis because they don't water in the fall and the ground was usually very hard. Nit a smart move in retrospect. Thankfully my Ortho was a golfer and told me I needed to take 5 months off, then start playing graphite in my irons in the Spring. 

... Luckily for me Aldila had just released their NV Tour irons at 130gms and only 1.5* of torque. VJ Singh was using them on tour. I was playing DGS300's and the NV Tour profile was designed to be very similar. A very stout graphite shaft, it worked for me but was a little more shaft than I needed, but my choices were slim to none. The next year Aldila released the NV Pro shaft at 105gms and they were better in every way. A year or 2 later the released their VS Proto 100's and they fit me even better! Since 130 to 105 to 100 worked so well, I tried some VS Proto 85's but they turned out to be too light for me. Seems 95-100 is my sweet spot. Skipping ahead I have tried many different graphite shafts in my irons and now play Recoil Prototype 95's and they are the best iron shafts I have hit. 

... The good news is there is a graphite iron shaft for everyone from Recoil 125 Prototypes for the strongest players to 65gm lightweight shafts for the play that needs more distance and a higher trajectory. There are also different levels of feel from very firm feeling Steelfibers to softer feeling Recoils to very soft feeling OEM shafts. You have done yourself a disservice if you have only tried one graphite iron shaft and decided they aren't for you. I played 107 days out of 118 days in Phoenix this past winter and I would have never been able to do that with steel. Obviously graphite reduces stress on joints for those with a myriad of injuries, but even a healthy golfer is adding undue stress and vibration to their joints if they play steel. Lastly with the cost of premium steel rivaling graphite:  Modus 3 - $37 with Recoil 95's - $44 and SmacWrap - $39... there isn't a huge difference in price.

very interesting- I've always assumed Graphite was for older slow swinging players, it's an assumption probably based on decades ago.

This could be a game changer as I use Modus 105S and 'quite' like them, but I also like some R shafts in steel, so maybe a graphite 105 would be the best of both worlds.

I cant say any fitter I've been to in the last 10 years has ever mentioned graphite as an option.

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Driver     Awaiting NEW Driver (after 10 yrs)  
4 Wood   Callaway Big Bertha Steelhead plus 4+  :callaway-small: Callaway shaft in 'Firm' flex

Hybrid     Titleist 910H 19*    :titelist-small:   Diamana ahina 'flower' shaft in 'S'

Irons         Mizuno MP18SC 4-PW   :mizuno-small:  N.S Pro Modus3 Tour 105 in 'S'

Wedges    Callaway Mack Daddy forged in black 50* and 54*  :callaway-small:   KBS Tour in 'R'

Putter        'YES' Tracy 11 C groove 34.5"

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On 4/9/2019 at 8:37 PM, mysterygolfguy said:

Not trying to be that guy, but I just feel way more consistent with steel shaft irons. Had fly z graphite irons and couldn't ever seem to be consistent with them, went to steel stiff and found a much better groove. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

... We are all individuals with personal preferences. But graphite iron shafts would not be so popular on the LPGA and Champions Tour where their living depends on accuracy if they were inconsistent. Ariya Jutanugarn uses steel fiber shafts in her irons and she swigs faster and harder than many here, including me. 😳

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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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17 minutes ago, perseveringgolfer said:

very interesting- I've always assumed Graphite was for older slow swinging players, it's an assumption probably based on decades ago.

This could be a game changer as I use Modus 105S and 'quite' like them, but I also like some R shafts in steel, so maybe a graphite 105 would be the best of both worlds.

I cant say any fitter I've been to in the last 10 years has ever mentioned graphite as an option.

 

... That is the perception of many of us that tried original OEM graphite iron shafts that were too light, too flexible and had way too much torque. Because I am an equipment nut, I probably would have tried graphite in my irons by now, but at the time I had tendonitis I was very disappointed to find out I needed to play something other than steel in my irons. 

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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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On 3/19/2019 at 5:51 PM, Bosox04 said:

How do steel shafts with Pro Soft inserts compare to graphite for shock absorption?

 

... While they do change a steel shaft to a more dampened feel, when I had my tendonitis they were zero help. Tried Sensicore, Pro Soft and several do it yourself dampeners. They still produce vibration that graphite does not. 

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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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18 minutes ago, chisag said:

 

... That is the perception of many of us that tried original OEM graphite iron shafts that were too light, too flexible and had way too much torque. Because I am an equipment nut, I probably would have tried graphite in my irons by now, but at the time I had tendonitis I was very disappointed to find out I needed to play something other than steel in my irons. 

The issue I had with graphite shafts growing up (this was a long time ago) was that the club felt imbalanced and I could never time it, like the swingweight was always too light. I'm 33 now and I'm already considering graphite because I have bad wrists from skateboarding, and recently my thumb has been sore (too much time on the computer).

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Driver: :taylormade-small: SIM Max 10.5 Fujikura Ventus Blue 6S

3w/5w: :callaway-small: XR16 Fujikura Speeder Evo 565 S

4h: :mizuno-small: CLK 22* Hybrid Tensei CK Pro Blue 80HY S

Irons 5-PW: :mizuno-small: JPX 919 Forged Nippon Modus 3 Tour 105 S

Wedges: :cleveland-small: RTX 4 50.10 | 54.10 | 60.09 Nippon Modus 115 Wedge

Putter: :EVNROLL: ER5 BGT Stability Tour

Ball: :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

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1 minute ago, yungkory said:

The issue I had with graphite shafts growing up (this was a long time ago) was that the club felt imbalanced and I could never time it, like the swingweight was always too light. I'm 33 now and I'm already considering graphite because I have bad wrists from skateboarding, and recently my thumb has been sore (too much time on the computer).

 

... Recoils/Steelfibers come in 95, 100 and 125 gm shafts for a Playah such as yourself. 

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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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1 minute ago, chisag said:

 

... Recoils/Steelfibers come in 95, 100 and 125 gm shafts for a Playah such as yourself. 

Yeah, I'm excited how many offerings there are now. This was like, 15+ years ago that I tried graphite shafts in irons and they were an OEM offering.

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Driver: :taylormade-small: SIM Max 10.5 Fujikura Ventus Blue 6S

3w/5w: :callaway-small: XR16 Fujikura Speeder Evo 565 S

4h: :mizuno-small: CLK 22* Hybrid Tensei CK Pro Blue 80HY S

Irons 5-PW: :mizuno-small: JPX 919 Forged Nippon Modus 3 Tour 105 S

Wedges: :cleveland-small: RTX 4 50.10 | 54.10 | 60.09 Nippon Modus 115 Wedge

Putter: :EVNROLL: ER5 BGT Stability Tour

Ball: :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

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My elbow troubles have basically disappeared, as well as my finger knuckles using the SmacWrap shafts.

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:ping-small: G400 LSTec driver 10° on Aldila X-Torsion Stiff

:callaway-small: 816 Alpha 3-wood 15° On Aldila Rogue Stiff

:callaway-small: 815 GBB Alpha hybrid 19° On Fujikura Speeder 865 Stiff

:cobra-small: F8 5/6 wood

:benhogan-small: Ptx Pro 5-P irons on KBS Tour V 110 S

:benhogan-small: Equalizer 50°, 54°, 60° wedges on recoil 780 Stiff

:mizuno-small: MP5/MP25 combo

Sub70  Wedges 50°, 54°, 58° Raw, on Recoil 760 SmacWrap

:1332069271_TommyArmour:  Impact #3 putter

 :EVNROLL: ER3 34”

:titelist-small: ProV1x

:callaway-small: .Org 14 cart bag

Adidas Tour 360 shoes

Sketcher shoes

 

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After another round with me recoils I’m fully back on the graphite train and highly doubt I will play steel again. 

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Driver: Titleist 917D3 9.5 with Graphite Design MAD Pro 65g S

Wood: Titleist 917F2 with UST Mamiya Helium 5F4

Hybrid: Titleist 816H1 21 with Atmos Blue 85 S

Irons: Titleist 718 AP3 4i, 718 CB 5-6, MB 7-9 with KBS $ Taper 125

Wedges: Vokey SM7 46/50/54/60 with DG s200

Putter: Scotty Caemeron Super Rat1

Ball: Titleist Prov1

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5 hours ago, chisag said:

... Unless you are very young, still growing and your body can take the pounding, I don't see why anyone would play steel shafts in their irons. About 20 years ago I decided to "master" knockdown shots because it gets very windy in Chicago. Every shot I hit that fall was a knockdown, even off the tee where I use an iron. By the time the season was ending I felt very comfortable flighting my irons down but I developed a nasty case of elbow tendonitis because they don't water in the fall and the ground was usually very hard. Nit a smart move in retrospect. Thankfully my Ortho was a golfer and told me I needed to take 5 months off, then start playing graphite in my irons in the Spring. 

... Luckily for me Aldila had just released their NV Tour irons at 130gms and only 1.5* of torque. VJ Singh was using them on tour. I was playing DGS300's and the NV Tour profile was designed to be very similar. A very stout graphite shaft, it worked for me but was a little more shaft than I needed, but my choices were slim to none. The next year Aldila released the NV Pro shaft at 105gms and they were better in every way. A year or 2 later the released their VS Proto 100's and they fit me even better! Since 130 to 105 to 100 worked so well, I tried some VS Proto 85's but they turned out to be too light for me. Seems 95-100 is my sweet spot. Skipping ahead I have tried many different graphite shafts in my irons and now play Recoil Prototype 95's and they are the best iron shafts I have hit. 

... The good news is there is a graphite iron shaft for everyone from Recoil 125 Prototypes for the strongest players to 65gm lightweight shafts for the play that needs more distance and a higher trajectory. There are also different levels of feel from very firm feeling Steelfibers to softer feeling Recoils to very soft feeling OEM shafts. You have done yourself a disservice if you have only tried one graphite iron shaft and decided they aren't for you. I played 107 days out of 118 days in Phoenix this past winter and I would have never been able to do that with steel. Obviously graphite reduces stress on joints for those with a myriad of injuries, but even a healthy golfer is adding undue stress and vibration to their joints if they play steel. Lastly with the cost of premium steel rivaling graphite:  Modus 3 - $37 with Recoil 95's - $44 and SmacWrap - $39... there isn't a huge difference in price.

Well, at 58, I am definitely starting to feel the wear and tear.  Left elbow and both shoulders tend to bark at me following a long range session - not so much from a round every 2-3 days. I can only imagine this getting worse as the years roll along, so this is why I asked my fitter about the composite option.  I haven't ordered the G410s yet as he's been off for a couple days this week.

I'll ask him as well, but which composite shaft do you think would most emulate PX 5.5 LZ and the AWT 2.0?  I've been poking around the web looking for some side by side comparison charts of other composite shaft mfg's, but have not found any.  This is the best comparative info on the Alta CB to popular steel options I can find.  Perhaps the issue with the Alta is that stiff is nearly 20 grams lighter than the AWT 2.0 stiff and 25 grams lighter than the PX I was hitting?

image.png.373fbfd81928917fecacbe288bde857d.png


:ping-small: G410 Plus, 9 Degree Driver | Official 2019 MGS Tester

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 16 Degree 3w

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 19 Degree 5w

:ping-small: G410 Irons 4-UW 

:ping-small: Glide 2.0 56 Degree SW   (removed from double secret probation 😍)

:ping-small: B61 Putter

 

 

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Looks like only the Alta CB are available for the G410's. Lot's of steel options though. 


:ping-small: G410 Plus, 9 Degree Driver | Official 2019 MGS Tester

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 16 Degree 3w

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 19 Degree 5w

:ping-small: G410 Irons 4-UW 

:ping-small: Glide 2.0 56 Degree SW   (removed from double secret probation 😍)

:ping-small: B61 Putter

 

 

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... If you go to TGW and click on "Enter Custom Specs" you will see several graphite options available for the 410's. For instance Steelfibers are a $40 uncharge and Recoils $33. 

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Driver:   Cobra Speedzone Xtreme 9* ... Tensei Pro Orange 60r
Fw wood: Cobra Speedzone 14.5* ... Atmos TS Blue 75s
Utility:   TaylorMade RBZ Tour Hy ... Matrix Altus 85 hy
Irons:    4-Gw Titleist T100-S ... Kuro Kage 105 Tini s-flex
              4-pw TaylorMade P760 ... Recoil Prototype 95 r-flex
Wedges:  SM6 52* F Grind /SM7D & SM8M 58* ... Recoil 110s
Putter:  Newport 2.5 at 33"
Ball:  TaylorMade TP5x

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And I see they offer a 90 day guarantee on custom orders - nice!  I really wish my fitter had more composite shafts to test. Sure hate to think there is a composite option that would fit me well and equal the performance of the AWT's and not get them.


:ping-small: G410 Plus, 9 Degree Driver | Official 2019 MGS Tester

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 16 Degree 3w

:ping-small: G400 SFT, 19 Degree 5w

:ping-small: G410 Irons 4-UW 

:ping-small: Glide 2.0 56 Degree SW   (removed from double secret probation 😍)

:ping-small: B61 Putter

 

 

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