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"Loft jacking"

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3 minutes ago, Middler said:

OK I wasted my time and read the article - and it does not refute my earlier post at all. Your article even noted it all started with just loft jacking for the sake of distance (which is purely marketing nonsense), until buyers noted they'd lost approach spin/green holding. But keep throwing up links to support what you already believe. I won't bother to counter with just as many credible articles that acknowledge the marketing angle along with the science.

Again there’s been first hand info from a mod on  this site and based on my own personal interactions with designers of clubs and shafts I tend to believe them more than I discredit the marketing. 

One can read into whatever they from marketing or articles that support their distrust for marketing all they want, but when it comes from those who spend hours upon hours testing, re-designing and doing more testing to get a product ready for retail it’s a hard to deny.


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5 minutes ago, Middler said:

No one cares what others buy. It's when OEM's claim their irons are X longer when they've jacked lofts, it's mostly BS. And when players claim they hit their new 7i as far as their old 5i without realizing the lofts on the two clubs are the same (or close), that's mostly BS. They haven't gained distance, they've mostly just paid to have clubs stamped with different numbers/lofts than the old set. Or my favorite is when players say OEMs had to lower lofts to maintain trajectory with new iron geometry, that's mostly BS.

 

... I know you feel strongly about this Middler, but I really think the truth is somewhere in-between. Developing SGI and some GI irons it was clear they needed to decrease loft. The fact that some may hit the ball farther was no doubt a huge consideration. And taking it another step, continuing to decrease lofts with 5* gaps is also a distance decision. So plenty of science AND marketing involved, but not just one or just the other. But forced to choose only one over the other I would agree marketing plays a larger role than the science. 

... I also think the days of bragging about distance is pretty much gone. Just too many variables involved. Every now and then I get a comment about how far I hit an iron, but mostly because I am 67 not because it is insanely long, just long for my age. If I hit a 7 iron 171 with a hint of wind existence, a higher index player needing a hybrid and in their 40's or 50's may be amazed I hit a 7 iron. But plenty of younger and/or longer hitting players that hit a 7 our 8 iron care much more about my score compared to theirs than how far I hit an iron compared to how far they hit one. 

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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
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48 minutes ago, Middler said:

No one cares what others buy. It's when OEM's claim their irons are X longer when they've jacked lofts, it's mostly BS. And when players claim they hit their new 7i as far as their old 5i without realizing the lofts on the two clubs are the same (or close), that's mostly BS. They haven't gained distance, they've mostly just paid to have clubs stamped with different numbers/lofts than the old set. Or my favorite is when players say OEMs had to lower lofts to maintain trajectory with new iron geometry, that's mostly BS.

But I'm done, been down this black hole too many times...

You're making it something when it's nothing. You sure do seem to care

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The problem is that if you want gi clubs but not strong lofts, your options are very limited. They are not for everyone. What most people overlook is the added cost. If you’re spending $1000 on a set of irons but can’t use 2 or 3 of them, then have to buy other clubs to replace them along with another wedge because your PW became a 9i. From a consumers perspective, it feels like it’s all about selling more clubs. It’s effectively making iron sets smaller for a lot of golfers.


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2 minutes ago, LeftyRM7 said:

The problem is that if you want gi clubs but not strong lofts, your options are very limited. They are not for everyone. What most people overlook is the added cost. If you’re spending $1000 on a set of irons but can’t use 2 or 3 of them, then have to buy other clubs to replace them along with another wedge because your PW became a 9i. From a consumers perspective, it feels like it’s all about selling more clubs. It’s effectively making iron sets smaller for a lot of golfers.


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The good thing about equipment nowadays is you don’t have to buy a full set or even the typical 3-p or 4-p that we saw up until 10 years or so ago. One can buy a 5 or 6 piece set or one could opt for adding the set gw and in some cases sw and not buy the 4 or 5 iron. Lots of set makeups these days and the vast majority of brands charge by the club vice by the set.

As for options the brands saw the need for having something that was GI but didn’t have the look of the GI which is now known as players distance irons like the p790 or i500 and the original players distance irons in the Ap2 that have now been moved to the t100-s. bending lofts has always been done and for some that could impact turf interaction due to the change in bounce which is what lead to the t100-s. 
 

While some will look past it or to an extend discredit the need for fittings getting fit will help find the right set makeup so that one isn’t spending $1000 on irons then $500 on wedges and another $500 on woods to have some of the clubs sitting around the house doing nothing because they don’t fit the gaps or the golfer can’t hit them

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I suggest that we just take the numbers off our irons and put names on them. Maybe our kids and grand kids names. Your oldest kid could be your 4 iron, middle child 5 irons, etc. etc. Wedge 1, Wedge 2 and Wedge 3

My point being, it does not matter. You have to hit the club close to the hole and make the putt and score as low as possible.

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20 minutes ago, LeftyRM7 said:

The problem is that if you want gi clubs but not strong lofts, your options are very limited. They are not for everyone. What most people overlook is the added cost. If you’re spending $1000 on a set of irons but can’t use 2 or 3 of them, then have to buy other clubs to replace them along with another wedge because your PW became a 9i. From a consumers perspective, it feels like it’s all about selling more clubs. It’s effectively making iron sets smaller for a lot of golfers.

 

... The days of selling iron sets as only 3-pw are long gone. All OEMs allow you to order a set any way you want. And of course most offer 1 or even 2 additional wedges. For instance Titleist designed the T300's with a 53* W2, a 48* W and a 43* P but you can order thru a 23* 5 iron, a 26* 6 iron or even a 29* 7 iron and round out your set with hybrids. So you can order them as a 8, 7, 6 club set or any number off irons you want. And the nice thing is you can combo anywhere you want, like a T100-S 8-pw and T200 4-6 iron. 

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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
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The good thing about equipment nowadays is you don’t have to buy a full set or even the typical 3-p or 4-p that we saw up until 10 years or so ago. One can buy a 5 or 6 piece set or one could opt for adding the set gw and in some cases sw and not buy the 4 or 5 iron. Lots of set makeups these days and the vast majority of brands charge by the club vice by the set.
As for options the brands saw the need for having something that was GI but didn’t have the look of the GI which is now known as players distance irons like the p790 or i500 and the original players distance irons in the Ap2 that have now been moved to the t100-s. bending lofts has always been done and for some that could impact turf interaction due to the change in bounce which is what lead to the t100-s. 
 
While some will look past it or to an extend discredit the need for fittings getting fit will help find the right set makeup so that one isn’t spending $1000 on irons then $500 on wedges and another $500 on woods to have some of the clubs sitting around the house doing nothing because they don’t fit the gaps or the golfer can’t hit them

Agreed, their are more options now than their probably used to be. Titleist and Ping have good ranges of options but outside of them it’s hit or miss. I lived this loft jacked nightmare in finding a good set of irons for myself. I felt very limited and stuck between game improvement and players distance. I haven’t seen the numbers but it feels like the loft jacked irons are disproportionate to the number of players they fit. Good news is that the industry seems to be headed more towards fitting and wider ranges of options to fit more golfers.


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2 hours ago, chisag said:

 

... I know you feel strongly about this Middler, but I really think the truth is somewhere in-between. Developing SGI and some GI irons it was clear they needed to decrease loft. The fact that some may hit the ball farther was no doubt a huge consideration. And taking it another step, continuing to decrease lofts with 5* gaps is also a distance decision. So plenty of science AND marketing involved, but not just one or just the other. But forced to choose only one over the other I would agree marketing plays a larger role than the science. 

... I also think the days of bragging about distance is pretty much gone.

And that’s why my first post in this thread, said “loft jacking is part science, more marketing“ - as I’ve said in every thread. I’ve never said there’s no science to it. Not you, but most who take the science side entirely come back at me with one non-sequitur after another and ignore the content - I’m done chasing that myopic nonsense. Again here today the link put up defending science acknowledged it all started purely as marketing hype with nothing but jacked lofts, the science aspect came after.

And while some players have quit bragging about how far they hit their X iron, the OEMs are still routinely “bragging” about their how long their distance/SGI irons are...


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1 hour ago, LeftyRM7 said:

The problem is that if you want gi clubs but not strong lofts, your options are very limited. They are not for everyone. What most people overlook is the added cost. If you’re spending $1000 on a set of irons but can’t use 2 or 3 of them, then have to buy other clubs to replace them along with another wedge because your PW became a 9i. From a consumers perspective, it feels like it’s all about selling more clubs. It’s effectively making iron sets smaller for a lot of golfers.


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That’s my overriding issue. I wanted a forged GI for some forgiveness, but there aren’t any anymore - so my irons are jacked one club. I’m not kidding myself that I hit them any longer, I don’t. My current 7i goes the same distance as my old 6i did - spin and trajectory aren’t noticeably different. I would have been perfectly happy to buy forged GI irons with traditional lofts (7i=35*). Fortunately the iron sets that are jacked 2 clubs or more are cast shovels that I’d never buy anyway. Where does it stop, when a 21 loft iron is stamped as a 9 iron?


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1 hour ago, LeftyRM7 said:


Agreed, their are more options now than their probably used to be. Titleist and Ping have good ranges of options but outside of them it’s hit or miss. I lived this loft jacked nightmare in finding a good set of irons for myself. I felt very limited and stuck between game improvement and players distance. I haven’t seen the numbers but it feels like the loft jacked irons are disproportionate to the number of players they fit. Good news is that the industry seems to be headed more towards fitting and wider ranges of options to fit more golfers.


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Callaway has a large selection in multiple price ranges with apex and mavrik. Taylormade when they released the p series along with the m family had a great selection. Taylormade looked at their sales and took some out and replaced with others. The p790 are extremely popular.  Srixon has a really good line up and they have probably the most forgiving lineup for only having a few lines. They 7x5 series has always been a very forgiving players iron. PXG imo has the best feel and performing range and their 0211 lineup is a big seller.

i don’t have the exact numbers but the players distance irons and the gi do a lot better than the cb and mb irons. I’ve seen lots of low hdcps playing p790s. I played last week with a group of 6 guys that had 2 mid hdcp and 4 guys that were between 5 and 10. 4 had p790 one had clubs he’s used for two decades plus and one guy just had a fitting and had the apex cf19 


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

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5 hours ago, Joker said:

Never understood why people care. If a strong lofted iron doesn't work for you, don't buy it

The only thing that concerns me if this is the way OEMS are going forward, it may get to a point where I wont have a choice to use clubs that have stronger lofts.  I will either have to choose to use old clubs with old tech or use newer clubs with the tech and stronger lofts.

Tony Covey was asked on No Putts Given how low a 4 iron can go and he said "0°" which is clearly sarcastic and over exaggerated, or is it?

I can see this trend continuing because companies need to win launch monitor battles to sell clubs.  A lot of golfers, including myself at times, get lost in specific metrics and its smart for OEMs to target those metrics.  Thankfully they also created the tech to correspond with the lofts.

Just want to thank everyone who shared their thoughts and @revkev thanks for understanding the noobs.

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I believe it is all psychological. Most of the golfers I play with love to hit their 5 iron but struggle with 3-4 irons. They also want to hit their new clubs further than the old ones.

So by making the loft on a 5 iron the same or close to a 3 iron when they step up to the ball they are confident that they can hit a good shot. And by making the new clubs lofts stronger they think that they are the equivalent iron 10-20m further where in reality they are not.


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52 minutes ago, Chizzle said:

The only thing that concerns me if this is the way OEMS are going forward, it may get to a point where I wont have a choice to use clubs that have stronger lofts.  I will either have to choose to use old clubs with old tech or use newer clubs with the tech and stronger lofts.

Tony Covey was asked on No Putts Given how low a 4 iron can go and he said "0°" which is clearly sarcastic and over exaggerated, or is it?

I can see this trend continuing because companies need to win launch monitor battles to sell clubs.  A lot of golfers, including myself at times, get lost in specific metrics and its smart for OEMs to target those metrics.  Thankfully they also created the tech to correspond with the lofts.

Just want to thank everyone who shared their thoughts and @revkev thanks for understanding the noobs.

Blades today are stronger than they were in the past. There really is no “traditional” lifts unless you go back to the original clubs used. 


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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37 minutes ago, RickyBobby_PR said:

Blades today are stronger than they were in the past. There really is no “traditional” lifts unless you go back to the original clubs used. 

I think you are hitting it on the nose as far as "traditional lofts" goes.  The only thing I can say to that is what is relative and relevant to my golf game which is that I would say lofts that I'm accustomed to.  The easy answer to all this would be "just get accustomed to these lofts now" which is true and maybe I'll get there or have to get there.

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My biggest concern is when I rent clubs when on a work trip where I can't bring my own.  But even with that it only takes a few holes to re-acclimate for the day.  

I did experience this first hand though last year when I got fitted for the first time and went from R7-Draw (2007) Irons to the p790s (2019).  7 iron went from my 150 club to my 170 club.  Took a bit of to adapt.   

Like age...Iron marking is just a number.


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My biggest concern has nothing to do with actual loft or what's stamped on the iron.... it's can I play decent with them and enjoy my time playing. I'm not sure why there is any concern at all about lofts and numbers stamped on a club. I suppose that's why I just stay out this topic...lol.

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Well I guess the OP was correct - amazing how many comments we are getting on a topic that people "don't care about."

At the risk of angering someone I do need to respectfully correct a comment that was made.  If the article supplied suggested that "loft jacking" began as an ego boost or marketing thing the article is incorrect.  It began among touring pros in the late 70's/early 80's both for gapping and to hit launch windows.  I'm sure that it made its way into off the rack sets in part for marketing purposes - but we have seen numerous examples here of adds from the 40's and 50's that touted one iron or another as longer.  The quest for additional distance has always been out there and always will be.

 

At our mid-higher capper, you can get whatever you want at whatever loft you want it to be.  I'm a lower handicapper with a shallow AI - I game Ping G30's which have fairly strong but not ridiculously strong lofts.  With a shallow AI you may actually hit the ball farther with more loft than less left - if you're on a budget the answer may be to go back in time and grab an older set of GI's that have more loft.

It's also interesting to me that this breaks out roughly along handicap lines - most of the people who don't really care have lower handicaps - I could care less if I hit 8 iron or GW from 115 - I have in fact used both of those clubs from that distance in rounds over the course of the last 2 weeks - rounds where I shot 75,72. 

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Ricky Bobby mentioned some info I got at the HQ's.   Here is the Master Fitter i met with, I didn't video my session with him, like Ryan from WRX did.  But it's basically the same info.

Watch all the way to the end, when he talks about the stronger loft.  @Chizzle this information at the end, should answer any concerns you have about play ability. 

 

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34 minutes ago, silver & black said:

My biggest concern has nothing to do with actual loft or what's stamped on the iron.... it's can I play decent with them and enjoy my time playing. I'm not sure why there is any concern at all about lofts and numbers stamped on a club. I suppose that's why I just stay out this topic...lol.

My feelings exactly!  People keep bring up this topic because one of their buddies just bought new clubs and now flies the ball further than they do.  

Play whatever feels good to you and makes your round enjoyable.

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