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NPG Episode 35: Should GOLF Have Standards For Shaft Flex?

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This week on NPG: Two more DTC golf ball brands aren't hitting shelves near you. Also, why can't shaft companies agree on flexes? Lastly, we answer some more reader questions, including tips on getting the most out of a fitting. Let's get it!

1:05 -Quantix and Seed are two fresh faces in the DTC ball game. Can they offer something unique in an increasingly crowded space?
24:27 - One shaft company's R flex might be another's S. Why can't they find common ground standardized naming?
35:48 - #AskMyGolfSpy: How is COVID impacting golf manufacturing, what's with weird wedge loft numbers, and how do I make the most of a fitting?

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There should be "standards" for everything in golf.... loft,  lie, shaft flex, etc... Good luck with that!

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I believe Tom Wishon and a group of other club designers/builders got together in an attempt back in the 90s but there was little financial incentive for the big OEMs to compromise what they were already doing. It is highly unlikely that any measurement industry standards will ever come to fruition.

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I don't even know how you could standardize flex. In fact, I think it would be better for manufacturers to completely abandon any attempt at standardization and move to something proprietary to each shaft.  Especially considering there are high launch S flex shafts. Low launch S flex shafts. Shafts where the tip is stiff and the butt is soft and vice versa. 

If anything. All companies need to move away from A,R,S, X ratings and into something else. it is then the fitters job to know the flex rating for that particular shaft. For example the KBS TD driver shafts. They are categories instead of flex. I play a category 5 shaft. 

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In graphite there’s so much that can be done with the materials and shaft properties it would be hard to do a standard. I’ve seen a low torque shaft wiggle like a noodle.

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6 hours ago, Quigleyd said:

if anything. All companies need to move away from A,R,S, X ratings and into something else. it is then the fitters job to know the flex rating for that particular shaft. For example the KBS TD driver shafts. They are categories instead of flex. I play a category 5 shaft. 

The flexes are meaningless so there really isn't a reason to change and I am sure whatever they change too wouldn't be standard or informational to a buyer.  Those that want to be fitted will generally trust the fitter,  those that go off the shelf will hit some balls and go with what they think is best.   As for the KBS shaft, while they have categories,  1 is senior, 2 is regular, 3 is stiff, 4 is X, 5 is Tour X so they do have a "flex" associated with them.  

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13 hours ago, cnosil said:

The flexes are meaningless so there really isn't a reason to change and I am sure whatever they change too wouldn't be standard or informational to a buyer.  Those that want to be fitted will generally trust the fitter,  those that go off the shelf will hit some balls and go with what they think is best.   As for the KBS shaft, while they have categories,  1 is senior, 2 is regular, 3 is stiff, 4 is X, 5 is Tour X so they do have a "flex" associated with them.  

True. I agree, I am simply saying that in many ways the A, R, S, X flex system is more confusing and misleading. 

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