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I've read a few threads on the 5w vs. 3w debate; and the prevailing thought that, for a good many, 3w's are just harder to hit.  I bag the G400's with Alta CB shafts and can hit both pretty reliably, though the 5w a little more so.  Both are set at nominal loft. My carry with the 3w is 185-195 and the 5w 170-180. I've noted a few suggesting to use a 3w length shaft in a 5w.  This will be easy enough to test, but I'm curious how many are actually gaming this set-up?

Ultimately, I'm finding myself using the 3w quite a bit on several courses I play.  I'm on the hunt for another 10-15 yards carry as those same courses/holes are problematic getting GIR's w/o two coined strikes.  My 4i is less reliable and pretty much ends up between these carry distances.  Presuming a swap of the shafts simply gets my 5w carry same as my 3w, will the added shaft length reduce strike reliability - essentially robbing Peter to pay Paul? 

Maybe I'd be better looking for some hotter face fairway woods or perhaps a crossover iron (haven't even looked at/tested this option)... but these PING's sure are the easiest to hit off the deck I've tried so far. 

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G400 woods have an adjustable loft sleeve, don't they?  Have you tried turning the loft up on 3 wood (will make it easier to hit), or turning the loft down on 5 wood?  I have my 3 wood turned up to 17 degrees, I hit it further, higher and it's much easier to hit than 15 deg.

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6 minutes ago, pakman92 said:

G400 woods have an adjustable loft sleeve, don't they?  Have you tried turning the loft up on 3 wood (will make it easier to hit), or turning the loft down on 5 wood?  I have my 3 wood turned up to 17 degrees, I hit it further, higher and it's much easier to hit than 15 deg.

Yes they do, and no I haven't tried that. Weakening the 3w loft seems counter-intuitive for distance gain but maybe it will from higher ball flight?  Looks like those sticks, the wrench, and my SC200 need some range time 🙂.

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3W length in a 5 wood is close to the Callaway Heavenwood concept, except I think the Heavenwood has a couple more degrees of loft than a 5 wood. 

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3w length is 5w is something I use quite often. Gets me better launch characteristics from the added loft and adds distance due to length and speed.

I did it in g410 5w and had it currently in my m5 5w.

if I don’t go route it’s usually because I went 3hl which is similar concept but lofts are more 4wish than 5w depending on the manufacturer 

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I went to the range today and tried swapping out the shafts.  My best with the G400 5w stock length shaft was 185 carry | 82 mph ss | 121 mph bs | 1.46 sf.  The average carry was 177 yards.  I put in the 3w shaft and my best was 191 carry | 85 mph ss | 125 mph bs | 1.47. The average carry was 182 yards.  So, it looks like the longer shaft might get me about 5 yards more carry.

19740874_5wbaseline.jpg.d2fce31ce6780382374c53ec730166cb.jpg

I also tried the stock 3w shaft and with the loft +1.  Ball flight was a wee bit higher but my average was 184 yards.  I set it back to neutral and that average carry was 187.

So looking at this still has me scratching the noggin.  If I picked up a 3w shaft for the 5w, it just closes the gap between the two but I still fall a bit short of getting to that extra distance I'm wanting out of a 3w.  Might I consider a longer shaft in the 3w?

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I'm a slow swinger.  In the past couple of years I've gone "over length" as far as the shafts in my driver and fairway woods.  With noticeably good results in terms of distance.  Being a bit of a tinkerer I've simply counterweighted whatever shaft I want to use in the butt to keep swing weight normal.  I doubt I'll ever go back to "standard" length shafts.  You're on the right track, have fun with the experimentation.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 3/9/2022 at 4:51 PM, fixyurdivot said:

I went to the range today and tried swapping out the shafts.  My best with the G400 5w stock length shaft was 185 carry | 82 mph ss | 121 mph bs | 1.46 sf.  The average carry was 177 yards.  I put in the 3w shaft and my best was 191 carry | 85 mph ss | 125 mph bs | 1.47. The average carry was 182 yards.  So, it looks like the longer shaft might get me about 5 yards more carry.

19740874_5wbaseline.jpg.d2fce31ce6780382374c53ec730166cb.jpg

I also tried the stock 3w shaft and with the loft +1.  Ball flight was a wee bit higher but my average was 184 yards.  I set it back to neutral and that average carry was 187.

So looking at this still has me scratching the noggin.  If I picked up a 3w shaft for the 5w, it just closes the gap between the two but I still fall a bit short of getting to that extra distance I'm wanting out of a 3w.  Might I consider a longer shaft in the 3w?


If you never hit the 3w off the deck, I wonder if you're a candidate for a 13.5* mini?  

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I think you've tried all of the tricks to get the extra distance from the 3w/5w you already own other than a longer shaft for it, but that may or may not help. Really depends on how well you hit the ball, if your strike location starts to moves off center by much, the extra length isn't going to net you any extra distance.  I don't think there are any new clubs out there that are going to be 10-15 yards longer than the G400 except for going to a 13.5° 3 wood. Seems like everybody spends all their R&D money on drivers and we're not seeing gains like that there so I doubt the current fairway woods are going to be any better at all compared to the G400.

You don't have to get a mini driver though, I believe both titleist and Taylormade make a strong 3 wood that should play like a regular fwy.  The issue with that is you mention that you hit your 5w better than the 3 which is the case for most of us, and is usually due to having the extra loft as someone previously stated so going down to 13.5 may not help much either.  I think a demo day or a sim session with a new fairway wood is in your future....

 

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If you're hitting an adjustable FW, like the G400, dial it down 1° to make it a bit stronger. I only carry a Ping G410 5W, dialed down 1° to be closer to a 4W. Great off the tee and off the deck.

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I used to use 12.5 - 13 - 13.5* (2 woods) as my first fairway club (minus the very occasional Dr off the deck). BUT, after 2 shoulder surgeries, Knee replacement, a short bout with cancer, I have spent so much time being sedentary that I can not use any of my clubs I have spent decades refining (x100 - x100 soft stepped, S400s, X7's that never got installed, Rifles both current and discontinued models in frequencies from 6.5 to 8+ (balata days). I do not have the club head speed to load the shafts, combined with low spin at low loft impacts I don't stand a chance to use the current trend of 17/17 or 13/22 launch angles with backspin.  I will be forced to loft up, a recommendation I have given in the past, combined with shafts closer to S300 soft stepped to Regular and light weight shafts to help me regain some spin. Point of this crying, if you have 116 -130 mph club head speed with your driver, you can game x's, if you only occasionally reach 112 - 115, the stiff variety are where most of us should use, now my current 98 - 100 puts me solidly in the regular arena. I will finish with my thanks for the continuing entertainment of people trying different components and discussing their opinions.

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I don't hink you mentioned what flex you are playing or your age. My dad was frustrated by his lack or distance over the last few years. Discovered he was stiff playinf stiff flex at 75 years old. Got him some senior shafts in a lighter weight and he is back close to his old distances. 

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On 3/25/2022 at 7:38 AM, NRJyzr said:


If you never hit the 3w off the deck, I wonder if you're a candidate for a 13.5* mini?  

Random thought in the middle of the work morning...
 

I hit both the 3w and 5w off the fairway quite a bit... especially when choosing to play 6000+ yard tees.  

 

22 hours ago, FmrCaddie13 said:

I don't hink you mentioned what flex you are playing or your age. My dad was frustrated by his lack or distance over the last few years. Discovered he was stiff playinf stiff flex at 75 years old. Got him some senior shafts in a lighter weight and he is back close to his old distances. 

Oddly, the 3w is the stiff and the 5w regular.  Both purchased used and the 5w not long after the 3w.  I was searching for the 5w with the stiff shaft but the one I found was basically new and at a great price.  I did buy an Alta CB regular flex shaft and tested that last summer.  No distance increase and dispersion was not as good; so I switched back to the stiff and sold the regular.  My fitting last year yielded the TSi2/Diamana Thump 65 in regular flex as the best option but, I wasn't wanting to spend $500+ since I was also buying the ZX5 irons.  That combo was getting almost 8 yards more carry and I've been poking around looking for used - though I really don't like the look of the wood or shaft to be frank.

 

On 3/9/2022 at 4:13 PM, Bobbers said:

I'm a slow swinger.  In the past couple of years I've gone "over length" as far as the shafts in my driver and fairway woods.  With noticeably good results in terms of distance.  Being a bit of a tinkerer I've simply counterweighted whatever shaft I want to use in the butt to keep swing weight normal.  I doubt I'll ever go back to "standard" length shafts.  You're on the right track, have fun with the experimentation.

This may be the next step.  Since I now have a shaft puller with the tip accessories, trying some of the more popular shafts, and maybe 1/2" longer, seems a reasonable option.

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