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Why are Lofts getting JACKED


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1 hour ago, GSwag said:

My gapping on my irons is about 10 yards between each iron, so I'm not sure which company you are referring to (my irons are the PING G irons on my 5-9 irons).

Here's a breakdown of what is in my bag, distance wise, with my irons:

  • 3 hybrid - 205 yds
  • 4 crossover - 195 yds
  • 5 iron - 185 yds
  • 6 iron - 175 yds
  • 7 iron - 165 yds
  • 8 iron - 155 yds
  • 9 iron - 145 yds
  • PW - 125 yds
  • GW - 115 yds
  • SW - 100 yds
  • LW - 90 yds

So beyond the massive gap between PW and 9 iron, most of my gapping is about 10 yards.

12-15 yards is a normal gap for the majority of irons and recommended down thru wedges.

what one sees will be dependent on that person and how the deliver the club into the ball as launch & spin and consequently land angle will be affected.

the good thing about most clubs is they can be adjusted to get what gap a player wants.

1 minute ago, THEZIPR23 said:

While I believe there are numerous options for forgiveness without huge distance gains you are correct in the fact that there are gaps that the OEM's are creating with the lofts. I believe that they will catch up eventually but having a wedge go 150 when your gw goes 120 is a huge problem. When I got my P790's this is the one thing I was worried about so I had the short irons bent 2* weak. I try to base all my gaps off my PW @ 135, it worked but off the rack it would have been a big problem. With my 785's they are bent 1* strong in order to achieve the same distance with my PW. 

Off the top of my head Titleist and Callaway offer multiple set wedges to gw or sw to fit into their players, gi/sgi irons and TaylorMade might as well with the m irons.
 

theres always going to be a gap in bags whether it’s from irons to woods or irons to wedges. Those who play the more forgiving irons would need to buy more wedges and would be able to drop hybrids because the irons cover that gap and wedges are cheaper than hybrids. Those who play a smaller iron head would have gaps at the top.

 

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3 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

12-15 yards is a normal gap for the majority of irons and recommended down thru wedges.

what one sees will be dependent on that person and how the deliver the club into the ball as launch & spin and consequently land angle will be affected.

the good thing about most clubs is they can be adjusted to get what gap a player wants.

Off the top of my head Titleist and Callaway offer multiple set wedges to gw or sw to fit into their players, gi/sgi irons and TaylorMade might as well with the m irons.
 

theres always going to be a gap in bags whether it’s from irons to woods or irons to wedges. Those who play the more forgiving irons would need to buy more wedges and would be able to drop hybrids because the irons cover that gap and wedges are cheaper than hybrids. Those who play a smaller iron head would have gaps at the top.

 

You are correct, it is very difficult to gap a bag from top to bottom with off the rack lofts. I had the P790 gaps dialed in because of changing the lofts. I would have to look but I believe I had them weaker on the short iron and then somewhere around 6 & 7 iron they normalized and then 4 & 5 iron were stronger. 785's are all strong but with the different tech this is expected. OEM's need to cater to the majority and until they start changing the numbers on the bottom they are not helping the average golfer. 

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1 hour ago, THEZIPR23 said:

You are correct, it is very difficult to gap a bag from top to bottom with off the rack lofts. I had the P790 gaps dialed in because of changing the lofts. I would have to look but I believe I had them weaker on the short iron and then somewhere around 6 & 7 iron they normalized and then 4 & 5 iron were stronger. 785's are all strong but with the different tech this is expected. OEM's need to cater to the majority and until they start changing the numbers on the bottom they are not helping the average golfer. 

The average golfer doesn’t know and probably doesn’t care what the loft on their irons are. They care how far they go. I play a lot of golf with random people as I tend to play solo and usually last minute. I don’t remember the last time anyone talked about the loft on their irons. They were all about when I have x distance I pull y club. Many also like that they hit their new x club farther than their old one and don’t account for anything related to the design of it. I’ve been to numerous demo days and the vast majority of golfers are looking for one thing and that is does this club go farther than my current one...that applies to woods and irons. 
 

it’s the internet golfers and the better players that have issue with the perceptions of jacked lofts and are the ones looking to make sure their bag is gapped correctly. So the notion of companies doing a disservice to the average golfer is that gets projected onto the average golfer

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2 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

The average golfer doesn’t know and probably doesn’t care what the loft on their irons are. They care how far they go. I play a lot of golf with random people as I tend to play solo and usually last minute. I don’t remember the last time anyone talked about the loft on their irons. They were all about when I have x distance I pull y club. Many also like that they hit their new x club farther than their old one and don’t account for anything related to the design of it. I’ve been to numerous demo days and the vast majority of golfers are looking for one thing and that is does this club go farther than my current one...that applies to woods and irons. 
 

it’s the internet golfers and the better players that have issue with the perceptions of jacked lofts and are the ones looking to make sure their bag is gapped correctly. So the notion of companies doing a disservice to the average golfer is that gets projected onto the average golfer

This is exactly my point. I am able to gap my clubs properly due to my knowledge. I can combat what OEM's do with lofts. The average golfer has no idea and relies on the OEM's to provide proper gaping for them and they are not doing that. 

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3 minutes ago, THEZIPR23 said:

This is exactly my point. I am able to gap my clubs properly due to my knowledge. I can combat what OEM's do with lofts. The average golfer has no idea and relies on the OEM's to provide proper gaping for them and they are not doing that. 

They don’t care to do it. There average golfer wants and easy fix and isn’t into the nuts and bolts of the club. Most don’t get fit. 
 

don’t most consumers rely on a company to do stuff for them? People take their cars to mechanics for maintenance because they either don’t want to do it, don’t have time to do it or don’t want to know how to do it. Same for many other professions. Why would/should golf be any different?

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4 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

They don’t care to do it. There average golfer wants and easy fix and isn’t into the nuts and bolts of the club. Most don’t get fit. 
 

don’t most consumers rely on a company to do stuff for them? People take their cars to mechanics for maintenance because they either don’t want to do it, don’t have time to do it or don’t want to know how to do it. Same for many other professions. Why would/should golf be any different?

Yes they use a mechanic, just like I use myself as a mechanic for my clubs. But there are fundamental things that everyone expects from a car that are provided by manufacturers. When I hit a PW and go down to a GW on next shot I should be able to expect that the gap is manageable. This was the case for countless years and now it is not. 

I just bought a new TV, I expect the picture out of the box to look good to the average person. I was able to adjust the settings to my preferences, something that a lot of people will not do. Same should be applied to golf.  

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22 minutes ago, THEZIPR23 said:

Yes they use a mechanic, just like I use myself as a mechanic for my clubs. But there are fundamental things that everyone expects from a car that are provided by manufacturers. When I hit a PW and go down to a GW on next shot I should be able to expect that the gap is manageable. This was the case for countless years and now it is not. 

I just bought a new TV, I expect the picture out of the box to look good to the average person. I was able to adjust the settings to my preferences, something that a lot of people will not do. Same should be applied to golf.  

The bolder part is the case for you but not for every golfer. The average golfer doesn’t care about that. Most still play the same wedge lofts they always played because that’s what they are used to.  Companies aren’t doing a disservice to the golfer. If they were then the sales numbers would reflect than and they would change their approach but companies like Callaway are making huge profits and outside of forums golfers aren’t complaining about lofts, gaps, and so on. 

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13 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

The bolder part is the case for you but not for every golfer. The average golfer doesn’t care about that. Most still play the same wedge lofts they always played because that’s what they are used to.   

And their game is suffering because the current lofts are not matching the wedges being played. 

16 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

  Companies aren’t doing a disservice to the golfer. If they were then the sales numbers would reflect than and they would change their approach but companies like Callaway are making huge profits and outside of forums golfers aren’t complaining about lofts, gaps, and so on. 

How would sales suffer if average golfers don't realize what is happening?

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26 minutes ago, THEZIPR23 said:

And their game is suffering because the current lofts are not matching the wedges being played. 

How would sales suffer if average golfers don't realize what is happening?

This is exactly where my head is at. The average golfer sees my 7 iron goes x yards further and they are happy with that but neglect to realize this means the gap in wedges has increased and gap in woods/hybrid is decreasing. Also looking at some of the lofts in common clubs they are not evenly distributed. Many clubs are using 2.5-3* gaps in long irons then up to 5+* gaps in PW and GW if they offer one. This tells me they are trying to balance the gaps but can cause more issues.

I get the average golfer could care less about specs but I'm sure they care about how they deal with different shots on the course and are suffering at these gaps.

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4 hours ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

The average golfer doesn’t know and probably doesn’t care what the loft on their irons are. They care how far they go. I play a lot of golf with random people as I tend to play solo and usually last minute. I don’t remember the last time anyone talked about the loft on their irons. They were all about when I have x distance I pull y club. Many also like that they hit their new x club farther than their old one and don’t account for anything related to the design of it. I’ve been to numerous demo days and the vast majority of golfers are looking for one thing and that is does this club go farther than my current one...that applies to woods and irons. 
 

it’s the internet golfers and the better players that have issue with the perceptions of jacked lofts and are the ones looking to make sure their bag is gapped correctly. So the notion of companies doing a disservice to the average golfer is that gets projected onto the average golfer

Doesn't this just confirm what the OP was asking/suggesting in the first place?

I was anti-jacking to start,  veered towards indifferent, but am now thinking it is hurting more golfers than helping.  My current irons are at least 1-1.5 clubs longer than the old Wilson blades I have. Is that from 40 years of technological advances?  Some of it is, I am sure. But I bet a majority of the distance gain is because the old 8 iron has the loft of my new 9 iron. 

Does the number on the sole matter?  Of course not. But if the average golfer is going to chase an 8 iron that goes farther, they are going to get wooed by the new 8 iron that is essentially their old 7. I don't have any concrete data, but I bet the trend has left many golfers with more long irons that they can't actually hit (or if they can,  the 4 doesn't often go further than the 5) and they now have a giant gap between their set PW and what they thought was a GW that no longer fits that gap. What do they have to show for the new set?  The same scores because they created as many problems as they fixed.

I think that IS a disservice to the unknowing weekend warrior because they are pitched a solution to improve their game that doesn't necessarily fix anything. Just because they don't know doesn't mean its not an issue. 

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1 hour ago, Middler said:

 

It's not that big a deal,

It is not a big deal as far as the number on the bottom is concerned, it is a big deal if proper gaps cannot be achieved. 

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I would say that it is a mixture of marketing and clubhead design and shaft technology allowing them to get away with stronger lofts because the clubs launch higher.

Im personally not a fan of loft jacking because it kills spin and limits your control.

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2 hours ago, romeopapazulu said:

Doesn't this just confirm what the OP was asking/suggesting in the first place?

I was anti-jacking to start,  veered towards indifferent, but am now thinking it is hurting more golfers than helping.  My current irons are at least 1-1.5 clubs longer than the old Wilson blades I have. Is that from 40 years of technological advances?  Some of it is, I am sure. But I bet a majority of the distance gain is because the old 8 iron has the loft of my new 9 iron. 

Does the number on the sole matter?  Of course not. But if the average golfer is going to chase an 8 iron that goes farther, they are going to get wooed by the new 8 iron that is essentially their old 7. I don't have any concrete data, but I bet the trend has left many golfers with more long irons that they can't actually hit (or if they can,  the 4 doesn't often go further than the 5) and they now have a giant gap between their set PW and what they thought was a GW that no longer fits that gap. What do they have to show for the new set?  The same scores because they created as many problems as they fixed.

I think that IS a disservice to the unknowing weekend warrior because they are pitched a solution to improve their game that doesn't necessarily fix anything. Just because they don't know doesn't mean its not an issue. 

The weekend warrior doesn’t care about any of the stuff the educated golfer/internet golfer does. The gapping, lofts, number on the bottom are irrelevant to them. The make up there bag based on what they think a set should be. If they think they need more wedges they buy them and if they think they need a hybrid or wood they will buy it. 
 

On Saturday I played with an older guy that I was paired up with last year at the same course. He’s a team titleist member, Scotty Cameron fan and had pxg xf Gen2 irons he was fitted for. Mizuno hybrid and woods. Still has those clubs at home, but this year he was fit for epic star irons, epic flash driver still had Mizuno hybrid and wood in the bag. Set makeup was exactly the same as last year just different names. 

Lofts iirc on the epic star are 3-4* stronger than the pxg. He mentioned he liked the Callaway’s because they went further. Never once said he knew or cared about the loft in them that’s why he knew his 6i went further with this set. He doesn’t play much and practices even less. At 74 his goal is to still break 100 and on the course we played even from the second tees its a tough course. He shot 97, had a great time on the course despite not really knowing any of the guys he was paired up with. Did Callaway do him a disservice? 

I play periodically with a group of guys that I’ve known for 25 years and have been playing with for 23 of those years. They play 3x/week and don’t practice. They don’t buy new clubs that often but when they do they don’t get fit and it’s usually based on brands they like or maybe a review from golf digest or what pros are playing. The only thing they care about is does the club make it easier to hit than what they currently have and does it go at least as far.

If consumers felt like companies were doing a disservice to them don’t you think they would stop buying the product this causing the companies to adjust their strategy and products? 

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7 minutes ago, Middler said:

Yes, or his fitter did. He could have kept the irons he had and just taken one more club and saved $1500 give or take. The Epic Stars are the same as he had with soles stamped with one higher number. He’s not hitting it further.

Some brands/models are jacked a full two clubs in loft. Again, where does it stop? When a 9-iron is 22* loft?

I agree most players don’t know or care, they wouldn’t have fallen for the loft jacking if they cared. 

It doesn’t matter what’s stamped on the bottom. That’s an arbitrary number put on there by a manufacture. Sgi clubs like pxg xf, epic star, g410 and such all have different lofts so which one is the standard.

in reality we are all playing jacked lofts because they have been getting stronger for decades. The 46* pw is a jacked pw.

with all that said I’m out. It’s a topic that has been hashed out and beaten to death on the internet for years and a topic that just won’t go away. Play what you like, don’t buy/play what you don’t, don’t knock what somebody else plays that’s enjoying the game with the clubs in their bag even if there is a perceived gapping issue. Heck there’s pros with large gaps in wedges are they wrong for that.

 

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On 10/17/2019 at 3:23 PM, pozzit said:

 

Ok so I'm trying to understand why lofts are getting so much stronger. Im under the option that the strengthening of lofts is driven primary by marketing and not by true need. I will gladly admit I'm wrong if there are requirements for the lofts getting stronger to compensate for tech but I'm just curious why.

 

So my understanding and opinion. The tech improvements in irons over the last 20 years has been significant, lower CG for higher flight and better decent angles, more perimeter weighting for forgiveness, thinner faces for more ball speed. All these improvements are fantastic if you need those things. I have also noticed over the last 10-15 years the standard 8 club set has shifted from 3-PW to 4-GW.

 

I know we are in a marketing driven society and when a 7 iron is tested at the fitter and has less loft and goes longer it makes us want to pay money but it's always a 7 and not a true comparison. Also wanting to show off and say we hit our 7 iron 180 yards compared to your buddy who had to hit 6 or 5 makes us feel strong.

 

So are we really gaining anything by adjusting lofts or are we just slowly changing the number on the bottom of the club?

Well, this is an interesting thread!  I believe we have had this discussion before, and MGS has also talked about it in the blog, but I'm too tired to look it up.

I have a few comments.  I agree with @RickyBobby_PR that the average golfer doesn't care about the lofts being jacked.  Yes, it potentially creates gaps for the wedge game, and OEMs benefit by selling more wedges... but only to those golfers that care and get fit.  

I disagree with @Middler that most players wouldn’t have fallen for the loft jacking if they cared.  The players that benefit from the design features of GI or SGI irons that have stronger lofts than previous years' clubs will most likely play better golf with them.  I am one of them.  I know they are jacked.  Do I care?  Not really, but why wouldn't I want to hit my 9i just as far as my previous set's 7i with a higher trajectory.  Maybe if I had a 110 mph swing speed and I could launch my old 7i as high as a tour player, I would stick with traditional lofts, but I don't.  The tech in the new irons gives me the launch angle I desire so I can potentially hit more greens and have a chance that the ball will stop.  Does that mean I have to have more wedges?  Not really.  Some players want nice 4º differences between clubs.  I don't.  I don't carry a GW, and I never hit full shots with my SW or LW.  My short game is one of my strengths.

I've played blades and I've played cavity backs, and now I play SGI irons because they suit my game better now.  I don't care what the number is, just as long as I can make the shot.  I'm not sure what the hate is for jacked lofts.  You can get a 7i in many different lofts from every manufacturer.  Play the set that fits your game and makes you happy.

Full disclosure:   I have an appointment at True Spec for my free fitting next week.  I wonder what the fitter will say??

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We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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It's a trade-off. Simple as that. Players who slot into the Player's Distance, Game Improvement, and Super Game Improvement iron categories are using them because they need the extra help they're designed to provide.

High handicappers, or inconsistent ball strikers and players whose swing speeds have dropped off need clubs that provide extra forgiveness and added ball speed. How do you achieve that?

Blades and split cavities aren't forgiving enough and slow swing speed players will struggle with gapping in the long irons with those as well as they can struggle to get the ball airborne without help.

I think by now we all realize forgiveness is increased with perimeter weighting and low and deep CGs help to get the ball in the air for players who struggle to get it airborne.

But that comes with a caveat. Lowering the CG means centered strikes spin less. Why? The gear effect. How do you stabilize lower spinning ball flights? You add ball speed. How do you add ball speed? You decrease the loft for better energy transfer. You hollow out the head and use a thin high strength face that flexes.

Decreasing loft also helps manage the launch angle increase through the gear effect to make it more gameable for these players.

It's all about what trade-off you're willing to accept to help you hit the ball better, no matter how inconsistent your strike is. The engineers who design these clubs are incredibly smart people. They understand the underlying physics behind club design. This isn't just marketing mumbo jumbo.

It'd be wonderful if everyone who played golf got professionally fit for their clubs, but they don't. But even then, I think most of us have gaps that aren't perfectly in-line with recommended gaps. It comes down to where you're okay with having a larger gap.

If you have a GI set of irons through to a gap wedge, does it matter if you have a 25 yard gap to your specialist forged SW? No. I think we all have an easier time controlling shorter irons and wedges, so why not just take something off the GW if you need to hit a shot within that gap?

But on the other hand, if you play GI irons, should you be playing specialist forged wedges? Probably not. And this is the area more OEMs need to address. As I mentioned in an earlier post, PXG does offer up to a LW in their GI and SGI irons but not a lot of other companies do. The issue with those, though, is the sole design and grinds aren't as versatile but that might not matter depending on the player in question.

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DRIVER PXG 0811XF GEN4 (10.5°)

FAIRWAY WOODS PXG 0341XF GEN4 (16°)

HYBRIDS PXG 0317XF GEN4 (19°), PXG 0317X GEN4 (22°)

IRONS PXG 0311T GEN3 (5 - 9)

WEDGES TAYLORMADE MG3 (45°, 50°, 55° TW Grind),  TAYLORMADE HI-TOE (60°)

PUTTER PXG BATTLE READY ONE & DONE

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17 minutes ago, FrogginBullfish said:

It's a trade-off. Simple as that. Players who slot into the Player's Distance, Game Improvement, and Super Game Improvement iron categories are using them because they need the extra help they're designed to provide.

High handicappers, or inconsistent ball strikers and players whose swing speeds have dropped off need clubs that provide extra forgiveness and added ball speed. How do you achieve that?

Blades and split cavities aren't forgiving enough and slow swing speed players will struggle with gapping in the long irons with those as well as they can struggle to get the ball airborne without help.

I think by now we all realize forgiveness is increased with perimeter weighting and low and deep CGs help to get the ball in the air for players who struggle to get it airborne.

But that comes with a caveat. Lowering the CG means centered strikes spin less. Why? The gear effect. How do you stabilize lower spinning ball flights? You add ball speed. How do you add ball speed? You decrease the loft for better energy transfer. You hollow out the head and use a thin high strength face that flexes.

Decreasing loft also helps manage the launch angle increase through the gear effect to make it more gameable for these players.

It's all about what trade-off you're willing to accept to help you hit the ball better, no matter how inconsistent your strike is. The engineers who design these clubs are incredibly smart people. They understand the underlying physics behind club design. This isn't just marketing mumbo jumbo.

It'd be wonderful if everyone who played golf got professionally fit for their clubs, but they don't. But even then, I think most of us have gaps that aren't perfectly in-line with recommended gaps. It comes down to where you're okay with having a larger gap.

If you have a GI set of irons through to a gap wedge, does it matter if you have a 25 yard gap to your specialist forged SW? No. I think we all have an easier time controlling shorter irons and wedges, so why not just take something off the GW if you need to hit a shot within that gap?

But on the other hand, if you play GI irons, should you be playing specialist forged wedges? Probably not. And this is the area more OEMs need to address. As I mentioned in an earlier post, PXG does offer up to a LW in their GI and SGI irons but not a lot of other companies do. The issue with those, though, is the sole design and grinds aren't as versatile but that might not matter depending on the player in question.
 

^^^^^^^   EXCELLENT

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We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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10 hours ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

It doesn’t matter what’s stamped on the bottom. That’s an arbitrary number put on there by a manufacture. Sgi clubs like pxg xf, epic star, g410 and such all have different lofts so which one is the standard.

in reality we are all playing jacked lofts because they have been getting stronger for decades. The 46* pw is a jacked pw.

with all that said I’m out. It’s a topic that has been hashed out and beaten to death on the internet for years and a topic that just won’t go away. Play what you like, don’t buy/play what you don’t, don’t knock what somebody else plays that’s enjoying the game with the clubs in their bag even if there is a perceived gapping issue. Heck there’s pros with large gaps in wedges are they wrong for that.

 

Agree.  I remember when I was still testing the Tommy Armour Atomics, Id get grouped with a random and they would ask me what iron I was hitting and I would kind of laugh and tell them something like, "well, it says that its a 9 but its really more like an 8".

I really wish they all would do like what Ben Hogan does in that instead of putting a number on the bottom of the club, they put the loft.  Theyre not going to do that though because it would destroy the marketing hype that the clubs are new and improved over the model they replaced.  If everyone knew that the, "improved" of they new clubs was really nothing more than the fact that they lofted and jacked and the shafts are longer, they probably wouldnt buy new clubs.

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"I suppose its better to be a master of 7 than to be vaguely familiar with 14." - Chick Evans

Whats in my Sun Mountain 2.5+ stand bag?

Woods: Tommy Armour Atomic 10.5* 

Hybrid: Mizuno MP Fli-Hi 3H

Irons: Mizuno T-Zoid True 5, 7 and 9-irons

Wedge: Mizuno S18 54* and Top Flite chipper

Putter: Mizuno Bettinardi A-02

Ball: Maxfli Tour X

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I have a question regarding the gaps for the wedge game. I don't see how it's an issue?

No matter if you are hitting a 7 iron that is really a 5 iron or any other iteration of loft variances from different brands, how does that affect wedge gaping? If you know how far you hit your wedge/s.... where is the problem?

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1 minute ago, silver & black said:

I have a question regarding the gaps for the wedge game. I don't see how it's an issue?

No matter if you are hitting a 7 iron that is really a 5 iron or any other iteration of loft variances from different brands, how does that affect wedge gaping? If you know how far you hit your wedge/s.... where is the problem?

What do you hit from 135 if your PW goes 150 and your GW goes 120? To me that is where the problem lies. 

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