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From Forged to Game Improvement

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Are you saying you used to play a players iron/blade and now going to game improvement irons? Forging is a manufacturing process which results in a stronger material bond as well as provides a softer feel (typically).

Blades will require more precise ball striking as game improvement irons will be much more forgiving. I've heard the Taylormade P790 irons are an excellent recommendation as a fit for this.

Charleston, SC

HDCP 13.0

  • Driver: :taylormade-small:  M6 9* with 65g Stiff Mitsubishi Tensei Red shaft
  • 3 wood: :ping-small:  G425 stiff shaft
  • 5 wood: :taylormade-small: Stealth 2 stiff shaft
  • 4-gw irons:  :mizuno-small: JPX 921 Hot Metal w/ X-stiff KBS 130gr shafts (soft stepped)
  • Wedges: :taylormade-small: MG3 52, 56, 60 
  • Putter: 34" Scotty Cameron 12.5
  • Ball: :titelist-small: ProV-1x
  • Tracked By: :Arccos:

MGS Tester '20 - :ping-small: G710 Iron Review

MGS Tester '19 - :918457628_PrecisionPro:Precision Pro NX9 HD Pro laser rangefinder

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Hey Kyler, welcome to the forum!  Hope you have a good time in our little corner of the golf internet.

Here's my progression of irons over the last 30 years:

Ben Hogan Apex '88s (Redlines) - Pure forged blades:  1988 - 2000
Ben Hogan Apex Plus - Forged players cavity backs:  2000 - 2008
Mizuno MX-200 - Forged game improvement irons (but almost players cavity backs):  2008 - 2018
Cobra F8 - Cast game improvement irons (hollow-bodied long irons, cavity back short irons, blade wedges):  2018 - present

I wasn't sure how I'd like the F8's, but I love them.  I'm a digger, and the wide platform helps out greatly.  I'm not a fan of what Cobra's done with the F9's and the Speedzones, but I know that people like them.  I'd check out the Sub 70 699s or the Maltby TS2s.  In fact, I'm planning on checking out the TS2s.

What's in the bag:
Driver - :cobra-small: F8 - Aldila NV Blue 60 ( S )
3 Wood (13.5*) - :titleist-small: 980F 
4 Wood (18*) - :cobra-small: F8 - Aldila NV Blue 60 ( S )
3 Hybrid (19*) - :taylormade-small: RBZ
4i - PW - :wilson_staff_small: D7 Forged - Recoil 760 ( S )
52* - :cleveland-small: CBX
58* - :cleveland-small: CBX Full Face 2
Putter - :ping-small: Craz-e
Bag - :1590477705_SunMountain: 2.5 (Blue)
Ball -  :titleist-small: AVX
Instagram - @hardcorelooper
Twitter - @meovino
Facebook - mike.eovino



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Hey Kyler;

I have been through the transition in both directions. I started in the early '60's with Wilson Staff  woods and irons. They were so much better than my game could live up to that it is a miracle I hit anything. After a layoff for 25 years, I started playing again. I don't remember what I bought, but they weren't anything notable. After a few years I decided that if I couldn't golf well I might as well look good. So I bought TaylorMade Supersteel Bubble shaft irons and some Ping woods. I still have them. They are still better clubs than I am a golfer. Then I started buying "up" in terms of irons. Went with Ping S55's, then Wilsons. Tried Nickents and some others. But I couldn't hit them as well as the Supersteels, so I backtracked for a few years.

Then, on a trip to Bandon, my golf buddy and I were on the range. He was hitting his new Cleveland super game improvement irons. I think the model was something like HLI - in any case they were the ones prior to the HB3's.I  knew his game well and couldn't believe how well he was hitting them. So I tried his on the range and bought a set the next week. Since then I have bought two more sets of the Cleveland HB3's. They are extremely forgiving, high trajectory, and long. You just have to get over how ugly they are in the bag. The sets of Cleveland irons are sitting in: 1) the garage; 2) the storage locker; and, 3) New Zealand, where we spend our winters. I still revert to them when my swing goes in the gurgler - which means they may get played soon. 

Last fall I decided to buy myself one more really nice set of irons before I croak - so I got fit and ended up with Mizuno Hot Metals. Then, in December I had a chance to buy a set of Hogan Ft. Worth Blacks really cheap and did so. I took them to New Zealand, intending to sell them after playing a few rounds and make a buck. I played them for two months there and quit thinking about selling them. They (and one set of HB3's) are sitting in our landlord's basement until we can return once Covid-19 has ceased. I played those Clevelands three rounds this winter (New Zealand summer) and still love them. But the Hogans are really special. They are traditionally lofted (34 degree 7 iron) but consistent as a clock and longer than the Mizunos, which are known to be hot clubs.

Sorry to be so long-winded, but my conclusion is that you ought to give some of the new irons that are one or two tiers above super game improvement another look, especially the Hogans. You may be surprised how forgiving they are.  Which Hogans are you playing? Maybe stepping back to the Edge irons will get you to a comfortable feel. But, if you are dead set on moving to super game improvement irons, give the new Cleveland HB Turbos a look. Like the Cleveland sets I have kept forever, they are ugly as a bulldog. But they are by far the easiest irons to hit I have ever had. I still carry the HB 3 3-iron and use it as a hybrid with the Hot Metals, slotting it between the 5 iron and my new Titleist TS3 hybrid. That old Cleveland 3 iron is my "go to" when I need 180 yards carry into a green. Because it flies so high, I can actually stop it on the greens.

Good hunting.


Edited by Hecaviator
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