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Official Forum Member Reviews! - KBS C-Taper Lite Shafts


GolfSpy WD

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CTL Label.jpg

T'was logged on MyGolfSpy, and engaged in a post,

About the Texas Open, or some prideful boast.

When at the front door there arose such a clatter,

I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter.

The dogs then awoke and howled and then barked,

And out at the curb, a Fed Ex truck was parked.

I wondered at first was he at my address,

But then saw what he left was from KBS.

And I let out a whoop, and let out a scream,

As I opened the front door and push back the screen.

I brought it inside, like I had discovered a treasure,

And will begin my review, which I hope brings you pleasure.


By the door.jpg


KBS C Taper Lites: Unboxing/Initial Impression/Club set up.

Before I begin with this other stuff let me say a word or two about Conrad Miller and KBS Customer Service. When we were contacted about winning this, I had a question, we all had questions, about this shaft. So I posted a question on the KBS Customer Service email and also one on the KBS thread on this site. Within a couple of hours both had been responded to and we had a better idea what shafts we needed. Also, this was Tuesday by the time we had all made our decisions and had sent it through the appropriate channels. Wednesday morning, I received an email that they were shipping. I also had another question once they arrived, and once again, I receive a prompt response, so not only did the shafts arrive less than a week, a week with a holiday in it, but KBS has been very responsive to questions, so kudos to KBS Customer Service.

Shaft by Box.jpg


Just the shafts.jpg

Unboxing and first impression:

Ok, so they were in a box and all of them were individually wrapped. The first thing I did was look to see if there was a note from my wife telling me to hang the curtains. I must say that I am not a fan of the satin finish. They look, well, ahh, cheap. Unlike the chrome finish on the Tours that look classy, and the Black Nickels that look sexy even, the satin, well, they look utilitarian. While I was looking at them laid on the kitchen table, next to some curtains my wife bought on Sunday, I could not help but think they looked like curtain rods. Also, when I picked one up and flexed it, well, it did nothing to keep me from thinking curtain rod. My initial impression of these was not that great. However, I remember thinking the same thing when I got a set of KBS C Tapers.


Heads mounted.jpg

Club Set up:

I decided I wanted to try these on my MP33's. Mainly because I have a number of 8 iron heads and thought I could compare these with several different shafts in them. So I have 5-PW as MP33's. I have an older MP FLI HI 24* 4 iron that I used as the 4, and for the 3 iron, I considered using a MP FLI HI 21* but I have that mounted on a KBS Hybrid shaft and this is simply a perfect club set up so I could not bring myself to take it apart. But I did have Adams Pro Black Hybrids in 18* and 23*. 21* would have been perfect but after doing some calculating I decided the 23* with a half inch longer shaft would be the perfect way to try this out.

I played a quick 18 holes on Wednesday with these and am very happy with the set up. I will also say that my plan on switching between the Tours, C Taper Lites (CTL's), and other brands has now been shelved. These are a totally different shaft, and feel totally different. I remember when I had been playing the C Tapers for a while and switched to the Tours, I hated the Tours. I ripped them to shreds on the review. That coupled with the set I got were not what I ordered, not from KBS but the retailer, it did not work out at all. Later, I switched and after an adjustment period I came to love the Tours. Hitting them side by side at least for me is ill advised. There is an adjustment period and they simply have totally different feels to them. More on that in the review, but just those few holes today told me to change my review plan.

I will say that while putting these together I noticed the swing weight is much different. Since this is something that some of you may care about I took the time, my wife's gram scale and a tape measure, and measured the difference in the swing weights, but for those that are like me I will tell you, the overall club with the CTL feels lighter, but much more head heavy. This is purely perception because both of these clubs measure the same balance point, within a ½”. My 8 iron with the KBS Tour had a swing weight of C2. My 8 iron with the CTL in it calculates to a swing weight of B7. I cannot help but think that the same head and grip with the DG S300 would be around D2. Simply because all the KBS shafts are counterbalanced and the measurement to the balance point is different even if the weight is on par with the Tour. I put a Pure Tour Wrap on the CTL's and the Tour has a NDMC on it so that may account for a point.


Complete Clubs.jpg



Looks after they were mounted and gripped:

While I was not overly impressed, to put it mildly, when I opened the box, I have to say that once the heads were mounted and the grips were on, it was a totally different impression. These MP33's have had the chrome stripped off, and been dyed gun blue and have now had most of that worn off to the point they are just a dull finish. When coupled with a plain ferrule and the satin finish shaft, I have to say these are truly workman like looking clubs. No glitz and glamour here, just a solid looking club that you are not afraid to take a divot with. I really wished I had white tour wraps or perhaps some black and white multi compounds to put on them but the red will have to do for now. These remind me of plain white ¾ ton Suburban. Nothing fancy but plenty of everything to get whatever done you need.

shaft with label.JPG



Conclusion.

Well, this is in no way the conclusion and is only the beginning, but my opinion of this shaft has changed greatly after just 18 holes and I look forward to tomorrow so that I can let the serious testing begin. I had no range time with these and simply went out and started whacking the ball with them based on what I thought the distances would be based on reading the KBS website. I was wrong, but more on that during the full review.

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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PHASE 2: The Official Review

KBS C Taper Lites – Official MGS Forum Review by RoverRick


21 Original Setup.JPG

INTRO

I have been looking for the perfect shafts for a long time. Last year, I tried out all the KBS Shafts (2012: A Shaft Odyssey) and liked all of them, and honestly I pretty happy with what I had eventually put in the bag. I had as set of chrome KBS Tours on my MP59's and some Black Nickel Tours on my MP33's. But because I played all the others, I was still anxious to try these out. These arrived on a Tuesday, and I installed them in some MP33 heads. I had bought a new golf cart on Wednesday morning and was very excited to drive my new cart and hit these new shafts. The original set up was a 18* hybrid, a 24* MP Fli Hi and MP33 5-W. I had decided to hit the hybrid or irons off the tee box for the whole round. As I rounded the corner of the clubhouse, there was a couple getting ready to go off, and they told me to go ahead.

Three practice swings, and I let it rip, and it felt horrible. I never saw the ball but it felt like I hit it about 3 feet high and maybe 100 yards. I was sort of surprised at that because for the previous two weeks I had really been striking the ball well and making center contact almost every time. I quickly teed another and had decided not to look for the first one because the people were waiting. So I hit another one, and it felt like I had bladed another one. I did not see it at first but eventually caught a glimpse of it land way down the fairway. I drove the new cart as fast as it would go to the ball, and much to my surprise my first ball was lying 3 feet away. Both balls were 20 yards farther than I hit that same head with the KBS Tour Shaft. Anxious to get out of the way, I quickly pulled a 7 iron and went through the pre-shot and let it rip. Once again, for the third time in a row it felt like I bladed it, but I saw the ball way high in the air going straight to the green and then to the back of the green, hit the slope behind the green and spun back on and rolled about 10 more feet.. This story could be repeated for the rest of the holes I played that day. It seemed as if every shot was bladed and I expected to see the ball bounceing down the fairway, but every single one of them was a beautiful flight, high and straight and more than one club longer. I told some friends that I was shocked every time I hit the ball because it “felt” like I had bladed the ball but it sounded and looked beautiful.

This pattern was repeated for about 3 days, before I eventually was able to convince myself that the feel was going to be different. After perhaps a week the “bad feel” was completely gone. I had become used to them and could move on and focus on the actual distance and other points of the review. I should point out that I after playing the C Tapers for a few months a year ago, I tried the KBS Tours Stiff. I hated these. Several months later, I decided that the XS C Tapers were too much, I moved to XS Tours. This took some getting used to and still later I went to Stiff Tours. So it stands to reason that going back to the C Taper family would take some adjustment.

After two weeks of playing that set up, I decided to make a change. I removed the MP33's and Adams Hybrid heads and installed Mizuno MP FlI Hi 2-3 and MP 59's 4-P. I have to say that this is an awesome set up. I originally had no intention of removing the KBS Hybrid shafts from my beloved Mizzy Fli Hi 2 and 3 irons. I really liked the high flight of the Hybrid shafts and higher spin and would be really shocked if the KBS C Taper Lites were an improvement in the Mizuno FLI HI's. Once again I was proven wrong. I love them in the C Taper Lites.

With these shafts, now, in a more forgiving head, and my swing changes, I have never had a more consistent month of ball striking. Even with a minor ankle problem that has affected my play, I still find myself make consistently great golf shot after golf shot. I will say that the review of these shafts will be glowing and the shafts are benefiting from the MP59 heads on them. I did not love these heads on the KBS Tours, I liked them but did not love them. I did not love these shafts with the MP33's on them. However, these shafts and these heads are awesome.

The shafts and the distance gains have actually affected my game strategy and has taken pressure off my driver and wedges. So now I am mainly focusing on hitting the fairway because I am confident I can get on the green with the irons.

22 Short irons.JPG

Performance

Short Iron Performance

Describe the following:
 

  • Accuracy – Since I was using KBS Tours before this and C Tapers before that I cannot say that these are more accurate than my previous shaft. For the past year and a half I have either been on the green or way left of the green. This is because of a swing error not the shafts. These shafts are very consistent and put the ball where I swing it.
  • Distance –KBS said that these shafts went 5 yards longer with a robot than other shafts. I found this to be not true for me. Distance is where this shaft far outshines any shaft I have ever hit. Tours, C Tapers, DG, Project X. This is not BS from a commercial, this is actually documented facts. For a 10 round period, I put a card where my score card would normally be. I used irons off the teeboxes most of the time, not off of an actual tee. After every hit, I punched a button on my Bushnell Neo X GPS watch and when I got to the ball, I noted the distance. I found that KBS claim of 5 yards per club was crap. It was much closer to 10% more yards. PW was 122 and now 136. 9 iron was 134 and now 148. 8 iron was 146 and now 159.
  • Trajectory Characteristics – KBS also says that this will have more height and more spin than KBS Tours. I find this to be the case. Not too much spin, but our greens are hard and fast. I mean really hard and really fast. This time of year, I often forget to carry my pivot tool because it is simply not needed. This coupled with short grass; our greens are more like a pool table than a golf green. This makes stopping the ball on the greens very difficult. With these shafts this is no problem for me with the short irons.
  • Control – These shafts are simply awesome. I can hit the ball to any of the 9 “window panes” or types of shots. I can make it spin and stop or run out.


Short Iron Score: (100 of 100)

23 mids.JPG

Mid Iron Performance

Describe the following:



  • Accuracy – There was really no difference going from a PW to a 6 iron. Same swing same accuracy.
  • Distance – How does 10% grab you here? The story with the mid irons is much that of the short irons. The 7 iron was 155 and now 168. The 6 iron was 161 and now 180. The 5 iron was 175 and now 191.
  • Trajectory Characteristics – With the KBS Tours, I would not hit a mid iron into the 18th green. No reason to. It is simply too fast and hard to stop a mid or long iron. This is simply not the case anymore. They come in high enough with enough spin to, if not hold the green, at least stay on the island.
  • Control – I find the mid irons to be as good as the short irons and no discernable difference in the makeup or performance of these shafts.

Mid Iron Score: (100 of 100)

24 long irons.JPG

Long Iron Performance

Describe the following:



  • Accuracy – I expected these shafts, especially the long irons, to perform much like the KBS Hybrid shafts. The Hybrid Shafts were very accurate but I found them to tend towards the fade bias. I thought perhaps with the longer shaft it just took longer to close the face and I left it a tad open and created a fade. So when I eventually removed the Hybrid shafts and replaced them with C Taper Lites. The slight fade bias of the hybrid shaft is gone. These shafts, for better or worse, go where you swing them. Solid contact produces consistent results.
  • Distance – Same as with the mids and shorts. The 4 iron was 180 and now is 202. The 3 iron that was previously on a hybrid shaft was 210 and now is actually on a C Taper not C Taper Lite but the distance on that one is 218. And the 2 iron is on a 3 iron C Taper Lite but 2 iron length so in essence it is soft stepped once. When on the Hybrid shaft I was getting about 221 and now I get 242.
  • Trajectory Characteristics – Trajectory and spin are much the same as the others. It goes where you aim it and getting the ball up in the air is not a problem.
  • Control – Awesome. What more can I say? If I find myself in a position where I need to get the ball on the number 18 green to have any chance to win a match and have the lie for it, I would go for it with a long iron with these shafts. Generally, I will lay up and hope to get up and down for par rather than take a chance on double bogey because that is such a hard green to hold, but I feel I can hold it with these shafts.


Long Iron Score: (100 of 100)

26 full set.JPG

Performance Notes

Obviously from the scores that I gave this shaft I am impressed. And why wouldn't I be? I have just had my best month of golf in my life. I am simply reflecting the kind of scores that they gave me over the last month. During an injury-plagued period, I was only able to get in perhaps 20 rounds I scored only once in the 80's, three times in the 60's and the rest in the 70's. I have never played a shaft that was a more perfect match for my swing.

I have stated many times that the ball flight was high, but it is still a very penetrating flight. Sunday we were playing the par 3 9th hole, 136 yards with a 14 mph wind from the left and towards us just a bit. I can't remember if it was an 8 or 9 but I remember I choked down on inch and hit it right at the flag. It was much higher than it would have been with the KBS Tour but it did not waver and landed about 10 feet right of the flag. Three more guys played in my group and two blew into the water and one into the bunker. It was at that point I realized that I had grown accustomed to a high but powerful ball flight with these shafts.

Total Performance Score: (100)



25 Labels.JPG

Subjective


Looks

Describe the following:



  • General design - The KBS C Taper is a satin finish stepless constant tapered golf shaft.
  • Graphics – The shaft itself is plain with no graphics but there are labels that come with them to install. If you do this yourself take an extra few seconds to ensure they are all lined up and match perfectly. You may not ever see them in a row like that again but if you do not it will look like crap.
  • Other unique details of the shaft? Like I said in the unboxing portion, the shafts themselves did not look the best right out of the box. They looked really good with the blued MP33's on them with the red grips and then looked even better with the chrome MP59's on them.
  • How does it come together visually when assembled? Once these are assembled it makes an attractive set of clubs.
  • How does it compare to other shafts in its category? While I was not a fan of the looks out of the box, of these or the original C Tapers, I will say that once assembled they look pretty good and I have grown accustom to the satin finish. I like the fact that my shafts are unlike most everyone that I tee it up with.

Looks Score: (85 of 100)

Just the shafts.jpg
Feel

Describe how the shafts feel



  • Full shot versus partial shots? The Dynamic Gold and Project X shafts to me feel dead. The KBS Tours and Tour 90's feel like they kick up high near the hands. The C Tapers and C Taper Lites feel like they kick lower. This was the initial problem with these shafts, but I have already covered the adjustment period. Now, these feel powerful. I can feel the kick. AND more importantly, I can feel the confidence it gives me that the ball will carry proper distance and not waiver off line. On partial shots, I would say that they feel equally good. Of course, there is no massive kick but it is still responsive. It feels powerful but not harsh.
  • How is the weight of the shaft? These are lighter shafts so they do make the clubhead feel heavier but I think this is one of the things have lead to my better ball striking with these shafts.
  • Is the feel consistent between the long, middle, and short irons? The consistency between these clubs is spectacular. Really, it does not matter to me if I am 133, or 193 from the green now. It is the same pre shot and same swing and everything. I simply use a club that says 5 instead of one that has a P on it.


Feel Score: (100 of 100) Now. I would not have given it 10 points the first week, but now I love them.

27 WITB2.JPG

Likelihood of Purchase (LOP)

How likely would you be to purchase this shaft? 99 percent chance that the next shafts I buy are these.



  • Why or why not? Well, I am hoping that someone will give me another set which is why I am not saying 100 percent. Haha. I actually have a C Taper in the 3 iron, and it is an S Flex. The ones I had before were XS. It I were to get a deal on some of the C Tapers I might get them to try but other than that I will stick with these.


LOP Score: (99 of 100)



Subjective Notes

The shafts remind me of Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. When I first saw the trailer for the movie Pretty Woman, I thought OMG, there are so many prettier women to choose from why didn't they get one. But then the more I saw her prettier she became. When I first saw these shafts I was underwhelmed. Then when I first felt them I was really underwhelmed. But like I told some friends, they are longer, straighter, more accurate, perhaps I should reevaluate their appearance.



Total Subjective Score: 94.6
Front Bag.JPG

Conclusion

I am almost embarrassed by what I have written here. I have read hundreds or reviews for golf clubs or shafts and everyone of them say that they got 10 more yards, out of this product. That this is the best they have ever had. The reviewer says that this is the best, the highest, the longest, the most consistent, the blah blah blah. We hear the sky is falling so many times that it cannot be true.

Sky is falling.JPG

However, take a look at what landed on the driving range today and you see that sometimes the sky does fall. Well, at least something out of the sky. While out on the course today, a storm came up and blew the roof off of an old cart shed. This is proof that sometimes the sky may fall.

This shaft really has played a roll in changing the way I approach the game of golf. I was never a great ball striker. I could hit driver pretty straight, and was awesome with the wedges and putter. My weakness has been the irons. A few years ago I was a horrible putter but I solved that. With the irons, I lacked consistency and honestly, I was short. I was working on this when these shafts came along. The swing changes along with a shaft that was perfect for my swing has made me an excellent ball striker with the irons. Honestly, I do not care if I am 190 or 130 anymore. I am confident I can still take aim and hit the shot. Since I have my putting under control, and now can hit the irons to the greens with confidence, this has taken tremendous strain off my driving the ball. No longer do I have to hit the driver. I have a 2 iron (Mizuno FLI HI 18*) that I can hit 240 off the tee very straight. I can also hit this from the fairway to a green. With the driver now, all I really need to do is get in the fairway. Anything inside 130 is wedge or a partial shot, so just somewhere in the middle to 150ish range and I am hitting a full short iron into the green. This is major.

If you buy this shaft will you do this also? Well, I have worked my butt off practicing and working on my swing but these shafts are doing it for me.

Total Score: 97.3

Bag on Cart.JPG

The Five (answer the following questions)



  • Will this shaft go in your bag? Why or why not? Of course, it will be in my bag for all the above reasons.
  • To whom, if anyone, would you recommend this shaft? Why? Someone whose swing it fits. I hit the ball low with a lot of spin but while this is a higher spin shaft it does not appear to have increased my spin. But if it does not fit your swing they have 3 other shafts that may do a better job.
  • How, if at all, did this shaft change your overall impression of KBS? Not at all. I have now tried every one of KBS's Products and like them all to varying degrees. This one just happens to be perfect for me right now.
  • What feature would you change or eliminate from the next generation of this model? Perhaps the color but I had the black nickel KBS Tours and they scratched and wore pretty easily.
  • What feature do you really like, and would most like to see continued or evolved in future models? This does not really apply to shafts. Each type of shaft is different and what is an excellent thing in this shaft may be a detriment in the next.

 

Just added Launch Monitor Results.

I went to the launch monitor the other day. I would give a shout out to the store for allowing me to do that but I did not ask, just sorta walked back there with the clubs like I already had permission. I did not wear the proper shoes and with the leather soled loafers I was wearing it reminded me of the ice skating hippos from Fantasia, sans the pink tutu. I did compare a MP33 8 iron on a KBS Tour with a MP59 8 iron on a KBS C Taper Lite. Both were bent to the same loft. The numbers were somewhat surprising. Due to the lighter weight of the shaft, the club head, 4 mph, and thus ball, 5.7 mph, speeds were faster. The claim was that the C Taper Lites were higher with more spin than the KBS Tours. The C Taper Lites launched at an angle of 18.3* spun at an average 7365 rpms and Tours launched at 20.3* and spun at 7558, not a significant difference. The decent angles were exactly the same, 43*, but the Lites did max out a ½ of a yard, 18” higher at 23.5 yards apex. However, the lightness of the shaft and the seemingly heavier head did increase overall distance and a tighter dispersion. Dispersion was not much anyway but the CTL's were 2.5 yards less at 4.2 yards. Overall distance was just about spot on, 141.6 yards with the Tours and 151.6 yards with the C Taper Lites.

So as with many things golf, my results were not exactly what the Manufacturer claim I would get. They claimed 5 more yards when I got 10. They claimed more spin control and I got less by 150 rpms, which may or may not be spin control. And they claim a higher flight and I did get ½ a yard or 18” higher. I do love these shafts. More distance and tighter dispersion is always better in my opinion.



 

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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8v4n.jpg

 

 

Before I begin, I want to thank Conrad Miller, the KBS team, and MyGolfSpy for this wonderful opportunity. I literally haven't won a “raffle” type event since my parents used my name to win a picnic table at a high school fundraiser when I was four years old. They've been great at answering questions and talking the three of us through our choices on the shafts we'll be testing.

 

 

72mp.jpg

 

I. Unboxing and First Looks:

 

I was not quite surprised to see my box at the door getting home from work as the guys had already made it known theirs arrived in our group private message. However, I did get one of those little girl giddy feelings inside at the prospect of opening the box up to see what lay inside. I remembered, though, that I had to take pictures of everything, so I didn't go all Christmas Day on it right away. First impression: What a smooth looking set of shafts! I have always liked the look of the C-Tapers, especially when looking down at a head like the Adams CMB, while in a store. The brushed satin has this muted look to it that just feels stealthy to my eye. My biggest concern, though, was how they'd look with my polished chrome FG Tour V2s attached. I immediately pulled out the 3 iron shaft, noting that KBS had stickers on the butt ends to indicate both flex and corresponding head, and flexed it in comparison to my KBS Tour 3 iron. The feel was similar, which is something I was hoping to see. That's covered in the next part. Back to the box… KBS of course included an envelope with shaft labels (with one extra in case of a messy job I guess), but otherwise things were simply packed. Each iron was in its own sleeve, with tips and butts protected by some thick butcher-style paper. Overall box dimensions were small, so worrying about shafts clanking around wasn't necessary.

 

czo0.jpg

 

 

II. Club Set Up

 

I decided to pull my KBS Tour Stiff shafts from my set of W/S FG Tour V2s. I was fit into those at a demo and have loved them ever since. My specs are standard length and loft, and 1* flat lie. For the C-Taper Lites, I decided to go with the X-Stiff, after reading that someone who might normally play a PX 6.0 or C-Taper Stiff would likely want to go up in flex with this shaft.

Initially I wanted to purchase an inexpensive set of heads to install the Lites in, but I decided that for time/review purposes I'd just use my main set of heads. I have a set of original Nike Pro Combo heads I've installed my KBS Tours in to generate more comparison between the two. As Rover mentioned, I likely won't take both to the course to compare in alternating shots, but I'll definitely take them to the range or Top Golf here in Austin to do so. I've been working summer school this week, so it took me a few days to get the shafts installed. Once on, my eyes were instantly drawn to the difference in finish from shaft to club head. I don't know that I like the satin paired with a chrome head. Still, these are sharp looking shafts.

 

5wqe.jpg

 

 

III. Conclusion

 

I did put a round on the new shafts this past weekend. Hula was with me as he had to “do thangs” in Austin and wanted to get in 18. I'll likely get in another 18 or 36 at the end of this week when I close down my summer school program and have more afternoon time to devote to golf. First impressions are pretty good and I look forward to putting in lots of time with the shafts. The one thing I noticed today taking some install pics was that there already seems to be a little durability issue with the finish. I use a Sun Mountain Four 5 with the individual dividers and it still seems like there's already some rub wear. I'll write more on that in the coming weeks if it remains an issue.

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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KBS C-Taper Lite – Official MGS Forum Review by TxStCatman

q09p.jpg

 

INTRO

 

I cautiously crept into the back yard shed, my KBS Shafts box carefully secluded under the XXL shirt I was wearing, hopeful that my wife wouldn't witness the infidelity about to occur. I quickly ducked into my club workspace, ready to cheat on my KBS Tour shafts with these sleek, satiny C-Taper Lites. I could sense the shame my FG Tour V2 heads felt as I severed their relationship with their stock shafts, and I almost turned back, in favor of finding a more willing, and less scrupulous, set of iron heads to pair with these beauties. However, it took my 3 iron two seconds of holding onto the CTL shaft to realize that it was just as capable of being seduced as any other club in the world. Yes, my club became a ho, something only my woods could be described as to this point.

 

I've been an average golfer most my life, since I could follow my dad to the range as a child. He taught me my amateur swing, one that I've tried improving on with limited success the last couple of years in my adult life. I grew up enjoying watching all the greats: Nicklaus, Trevino, Chi Chi, Palmer, Crenshaw and others. I loved the way they had unique, yet beautiful swings, and only wished I could play like them. I settled, and was happy to, for playing rounds of golf with my dad, enjoying the 3-5 hours we'd spend out on our little muni course in the Rio Grande Valley. Because of my home-learned swing, I grew into a “digger's” play style, usually de-lofting clubs at impact, and hitting with a negative AoA creating lots of backspin.

 

I saw the opportunity to play the C-Taper Lites as a chance to hit a lower spinning shaft that didn't mean hitting worm-burners every swing. I ordered them in X-Stiff, based on information from the KBS team, as well as my own experiences with playing the Tours for a few months and hitting original C-Tapers in demo clubs. I did install my pulled Tours into an older set of heads, but I haven't done much comparison like I'd hoped I would. I instead focused on just the experience of playing the C-Taper Lites for review purposes.

 

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Performance

 

Short Iron Performance

 

I felt I could swing more aggressively with these shafts than with Tours, and could trust that they'd go where I was aiming. Any miss was due to either a swing flaw, or misalignment. These shafts in the short irons made me feel ok to play a few yards left of target, rather than several with the Tours. I must also add that my best shot came from hitting 8-iron into about a 10mph wind and hitting the flagstick from 140 yards on a par 3. Closest to an ace I've been since being two inches out of one in Portland, OR last summer.

 

With the C-Taper Lites, I felt like it was possible to gain distance with my clubs. However, I soon realized that I had to be on point with my swing to generate extra yardage. In truth, a more focused swing led to perhaps a few extra yards, but nothing that would be noticeable on a good day with my Tours.

I felt that I could really get the ball airborne with this shaft, just like with the Tours. I found especially that short irons on shorter par 3 holes really got in the air. Sometimes to my detriment, because wind could play with the ball more. However, I did feel like the height on most shots was pretty good to my eye. I think I took to playing lower shots with previous equipment because of the high amount of spin I'd create, but with these I didn't have to worry as much.

 

I felt like these played well in terms of control. I felt like I could flight the ball if I really needed to. Again, any misses were often due to my swing flaws. However, if I had trouble shots out of the rough, I could keep these low to get out and run, or easily pop up to get over some type of hazard.

 

Short Iron Score: (97 of 100)

 

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Mid Iron Performance

 

Mid-iron accuracy for me with these clubs was much improved. Because of tighter dispersion, I felt like I wasn't capable of as big a miss playing my normal fade into greens from 140-160 yards out. This allowed me to really focus on lining up and aiming for a specific target without feeling like there was guesswork involved.

 

In this section of the bag I felt there was a little more gain in distance and at the same time a little loss. Because of the lower spin, I felt that shots downwind had a chance to carry and roll out a little further. However, into the wind it sometimes felt like the ball would just get knocked down out of the air. Still, on calm days I felt like my 5-7 irons were spot on for my normal distance and if anything a touch longer.

 

I really did like the trajectory the C-Taper Lites provide. My mid irons could get up a little more without having to worry about too much side or backspin shortening distance. In this sense I could really swing at the ball and not be worried about trajectory hindering performance.

 

I started to get really comfortable with this section of my irons in terms of control. Like I said, dispersion was good, and it took a really errant swing to make a bad shot happen. I could flight these low out of trees or hit them like a high pitch shot to get around/out of trouble.

 

Mid Iron Score: (98 of 100)

 

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Long Iron Performance

 

I've never been accurate with long irons, at least in terms of left-to-right, point-and-shoot play. However, the tighter dispersion of playing a stronger flex really helped boost confidence in the long clubs. I recently took out my 3 hybrid just for the sake of hitting 3 iron from my set with this shaft. I've actually come to enjoy using 3/4/5 iron to tee off on shorter par 4 holes.

 

I really felt like this is where the C-Taper Lites shined in my bag. I felt that I gained about 5-10 yards with my long irons on those pure, blissful strikes we all experience that make us think we can always play a long iron. The more common mis-hits still weren't terrible, but it was nice knowing I could hit 5 iron 180 again (hadn't done that since I played a set of TMs that had the now commonplace jacked up lofts). I hit a 4 into the wind about 186 my last round out.

 

I think being able to get the ball in the air with the longer clubs is essential for anyone. I found it easy to get the Lites to get up, sometimes better than I remembered my Tours doing. I don't know what it is about the profile, but I really enjoyed the mid-high flight I often saw on good swings.

 

Again, dispersion makes lots of things better. Knowing I wouldn't be too far off my line, I could attack more and try to play more “finesse” shots on course. I could hit a low 3 iron for a second shot into a par 5 and know where to expect it to land. Often times, I'll play courses here in Austin that have tree lines that get tricky to maneuver out of if you go offline with a tee shot. I didn't have any issues using a 3-5 iron to get out of trouble.

 

Long Iron Score: (99 of 100)

 

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Performance Notes

 

Overall, I really think KBS has an excellent product on their hands with the C-Taper Lite shafts. They look incredible, and my early concerns about finish were unfounded, as I haven't seen any real degradation in the matte finish we've come to know C-Tapers for. I really liked these shafts in the long and mid iron ranges, and I think the short irons area is a part of the bag I just need to improve on personally to make these shine. Thankfully, there's a Top Golf nearby that would be perfect for doing aim-and-shoot drills with short irons.

 

Total Performance Score: (98)

 

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Subjective

Looks

 

One thing that I loved about my previous set of PX shafts was the stepless look. I'm glad Braly used a similar concept with the C-Taper and C-Taper Lite models. They look sleek, sexy, and flat out awesome. I really did come to like the brushed/matte finish of the shaft. However, I'm still not convinces it looks good on a polished chrome head. Something like a satin finish (CMB) or black oxide (CB3) would look killer on this shaft. I'm contemplating swapping these out for the tours in my main set and sending my Pro Combos to BOS or ChopShop for the black ox treatment to put the Lites into. I think they'd look amazing!

 

Stickers were pretty straightforward. I've always liked the shaft band design KBS has used for the Tours/C-Taper lines. It separates them from the often more budget-friendly FST models that people use for a lot of component building. I would love to see a custom color shaft band option be made available like they did for the Tours. If I could get some green labels for the above mentioned project, I'd have a set of Oregon Ducks themes Pro Combos with green labels and yellow grips. Drool!

 

Because of the finish, I found that pulling/replacing clubs in the bag sometimes created that “nails on chalkboard” sound to my ears. I know it's just from a shafts rubbing slightly against another club, but it's not something I was used to with my KBS Tours.

 

Again, for assembly purposes, I thought the clubs looked alright. Depending on what you want to install these in, you might feel differently. They're ok in a chrome head to my eye, but would look better against matte/satin/black oxide.

 

I think the C-Taper Lites are a great alternative for someone who wants C-Taper characteristics without sacrificing too much of the Tour qualities. There's a good marriage here in the amount of low-spin, high-launch with tight dispersion.

 

Looks Score: (98 of 100)

 

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Feel

 

I don't play many half shots, to be honest. Most of them are get-out-of-jail shots from the rough or when obstacles are present in a line to the green. I really liked the way the shafts felt through my full swings, especially when things were firing just right.

 

Shaft weight was really neat for me. While these weighed similar to my KBS Tours, I felt that I could feel the heads of my irons a little more based on the weighting throughout the shaft. I don't play with swingweight at all, but it's something I feel I need to have looked at. My main problem is there aren't many people in Austin that do such detailed fitting. I'd be interested in seeing where my irons SW out at as opposed to what might make me a more consistent ballstriker.

 

Top to bottom, I do think that my clubs felt very similar. The weight going through the set felt consistent and I never had the feeling that a club at a certain length was way off compared to the rest of the set.

 

Looks Score: (100 of 100)

 

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Likelihood of Purchase (LOP)

 

How likely would you be to purchase this shaft?

 

I think that if these were available in a fitting cart at my local shop, I would definitely demo them and purchase. There's not a whole lot to not like about C-Taper Lites. I know what the price-point is on new premium shafts, so I would definitely recommend trying before buying, but there's really not much more to say other than that now that I've played them, they're staying. If I do a shaft swap between my sets, I'll likely play hopscotch between them and alternate rounds.

 

LOP Score: (100 of 100)

 

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Subjective Notes

 

Here's the one thing that I'll have to say about these shafts that put me over the edge and gave me a true “wow” factor. A few weeks back, I played a local muni track that I absolutely love. Despite enjoying the course and layout, I'd never been able to shoot better than 86. I went out there, playing the back tees at about 6600 yards, and shot 78. This was my first, and only time (since then my game has fallen to the seventh layer of Hades) to break 80, but my iron play was lights out. I found that I was actually putting myself into 2-putt-for-par situations more often than ever before. I haven't been practicing as much lately, though. I work at the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired as a job coach, and our school year is ramping up with meetings and trainings, so likely my practice will be limited to a Saturday on the range and 9 holes after work on a Wednesday. But I'm hoping that more and more play will see me back under 80.

 

Total Subjective Score: (99)

 

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Conclusion

 

I feel that for the rest of my life, seeking no help in my swing, that I'll continue to be an average golfer, shooting in the 80s to low 90s, with the occasional “lighting in a bottle” round of 78-80. I know a guy in town who could probably help me get out of “average” to the point of becoming a pretty solid overall player, but my work and family don't provide the amount of time for that to happen in the near future (not within a few months at least). I'm ok with that. My wife and I want to start having kids, we enjoy our work (same campus) and spend as much time together as possible. Unfortunately she doesn't like golf, but doesn't give me grief for playing my weekly round.

 

Perhaps one day soon I'll be able to afford the few hundred bucks for a group of lessons that will make playing my weekly round more enjoyable. Hula knows how much I like to play, and that driving a couple hours for a round of golf isn't out of the question when there's good company to be had. Maybe I can get him to teach me that darned draw he always plays off the tee, but for now, I'll work on my fade and continue to try and play fairways and greens. I've learned a lot since that first day following my dad onto the range. I don't go after sucker pins anymore, and only when it's a calm day will I try that 225 yard carry over water into a par 5. Golf has taught me patience, respect for others, and how to retain a sense of dignity in myself, even when the worst possible thing can happen.

 

I really do want to thank KBS, MGS, and the guys I've played golf with during my trial of the C-Taper Lites. It's been an enjoyable experience that I will never forget. The last time I ever “won” something was when my parents wrote my name on a raffle ticket during my local high school's football game. I was 5, and we won a picnic table for the backyard. For some reason, I feel that this has trumped that in many ways, mostly because it was unexpected, and I am honored that KBS and MGS selected me to participate.

 

Total Score: 99

 

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The Five (answer the following questions)

 

1. Will this shaft go in your bag? Why or why not? I have a feeling that I'll be playing the C-Taper Lites in my FG Tour V2s for a while. For one, I really like how they've played so far. Also, I hate taking apart and putting together clubs. I know I could have the local shop do it, but I have the tools and eventually do like the work.

 

2. To whom, if anyone, would you recommend this shaft? Why? If you're a high spin player, I would definitely check out the C-Taper Lites. I feel the lower spin compared to Tours and other shafts I've tried really helped in adding a few yards while also controlling dispersion. Still, you don't lose enough spin to make holding greens a problem.

 

3. How, if at all, did this shaft change your overall impression of KBS? I've never had a negative view of KBS or FST. I've always felt that they made good products, mostly after the time Kim Braly joined the company. These shafts just solidified my feeling towards KBS. I think they produce top-notch equipment, and I'll consider them first when it comes time to make another iron/wedge purchase.

 

4. What feature would you change or eliminate from the next generation of this model? It would be nice if C-Tapers and C-Taper Lites came with a chrome option. I know it's a more traditional look that everyone uses, but in some cases it's warranted. Certain clubs look better with chrome shafts, while others look better in the black/white/brushed finishes that KBS has used lately.

 

5. What feature do you really like, and would most like to see continued or evolved in future models? I love the look of stepless shafts. I just think it makes a club look sleek and appealing to the eye. This is definitely something I'd like to see KBS continue to work with in the future. It's funny, I played clarinet for many years up through college, and when I think of C-Tapers, I think of barrels for the clarinet. There were all sorts of concepts used to design barrels (the throat of the instrument) such as reverse taper, polycylindrical, etc. and it makes me chuckle thinking that there could be a future in such design for iron shafts. I just imagine a shaft wall starting thick in the upper section, thinning out in the middle, then thickening up at the tip (all within reason and capability).

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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Unboxing

 

I had it all planned out. I expected to see a box on my doorstep when I got home from work last Monday, I was going to take a few pictures and then get these new shafts installed into my irons, ready to play for my round Tuesday afternoon. Well after coming home to no box I went to check the email KBS sent me. It clearly states they would be shipped on Monday, not arriving. Great!

So I had to wait a whole 20 more hours and Fedex drops me a nice looking box with KBS blazed across the front. As Rick mentioned Conrad from KBS got our orders the previous Wednesday, so to have the shafts delivered by Tuesday, with a holiday, is quite impressive. I should take this time to again thank KBS and MyGolfSpy for this wonderful opportunity, I feel very privileged.

 

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First Impressions

 

Inside of this sharp looking box I found some very sharp looking shafts. I've seen CTapers in stores before and these looked the exact same to my eye, nice brushed aluminum color and texture. The packaging was pretty minimal, but the shafts were not clanging around or anything. The plastic used to sheath each shaft was surprisingly thick and provided good protection.

 

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A few details I noticed are certainly worth mentioning. First, the stickers feel very strong and leave no doubt that they will last for a very long time on the shafts.

 

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Second, each shaft was clearly labeled to show which club it was for so there was no confusion on that front.

 

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I took some time to feel how strong the shafts felt (I got stiff flex), and from flexing them with my hands they didn't feel overly stiff, something I was a bit worried about because of reading how stout the original CTapers are. As I will explain next, I likely don't have the swing for the original CTapers.

Player Profile

 

I don't have an official handicap but my average score is 80-85. My iron game is not my strongest attribute, but also not the weakest. I would say I'm a reasonably good ball striker. My driver swing speed is in the 95-98 range and I would call myself a low spin player. My typical ball flight is mid-low, so I am hoping to see a higher ball flight with the new shafts. As for preferences, I have played Dynamic Gold S300s for most of my life, I still enjoy using them, and I prefer that heavier weight range in my irons. I have played some lighter steel shafts before (older FST's I believe) and I just didn't care for them, they felt flimsy to me. So overall, on paper, the CTaper Lites should be a good fit for me.

 

Club Setup

 

I will be installing the shafts into Adams Idea Pro Black CB1 4-PW, and a Cobra S2 Forged 3 iron. Luckily, my original mis-planned arrival of the shafts gave me one last chance to play this set with S300s installed, so I have a good baseline for comparison. I also have a set of Mizunos with Project X shafts in them, and although it won't be an apples to apples comparison I should be able to speak on any differences in feel.

I will be able to get my first round in tomorrow, followed by several range sessions and 18-27 holes per week for the next few weeks. I am really looking forward to getting these on the course, stay tuned!

WITB

 

Driver: Calloway Diablo Octane Tour, UST VTS Silver

Hybrids: 16* Taylormade RBZ Tour 16*, 21* TEE XCG-3

Irons: Adams CB1 4-PW, KBS C Taper Lite S

Wedges: Nike VR Pro Forged 52*, 58*

Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG3

 

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Midsize

Ball: Whatever I find, prefer Bridgestone

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KBS CTaper Lite – Official MGS Forum Review by ms1195

 

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With recent legislation changes in Washington and Colorado, getting high is easier than ever before. I for one think this is great news as I have been having trouble getting high for the past couple of years. Whether I'm winding down after work or relaxing with my friends on the weekend, no matter how hard I hit it I never reach the high I want or expect. I have tried a few different alternatives but there always seems to be unwanted side effects; harshness, a really light feeling, or worst of all, a complete lack of control.

 

Being high with no control can be fun for some, but will always lead to trouble. If staying low kept me on the straight and narrow then I was willing to accept my fate, albeit a short and boring one.

I had all but given up on being able to hit the green like I used to when out of nowhere I see this contest for KBS CTaper Lites. It seemed KBS had developed a hybrid strain that would deliver a smooth, medium-heavy high, with no chance of the spins or short term memory loss. Could KBS actually supply me with the high I have been looking for?

 

I was intrigued so I threw my name in the hat to be one of their lab test subjects. To my surprise I was selected, and just a few days later my local Fedex dealer dropped off the stash. I packed them into some smoked out Adams CB1 heads and fitted some Lamkin Crossline fatties on the other end.

The shafts look awesome, especially with the labels on. Great contrast to the black iron heads, and a subtle red white and blue going on between the labels and the grips. I mentioned I was talking about golf clubs right?

 

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While the looks are great, their performance over the last few weeks was even better. Starting in my first round, I really started to get excited about them when I lipped out a 140 yard par 3 tee shot with my 9 iron. I was quickly realizing that this was going to be a very enjoyable equipment test.

I played a couple of rounds with irons only and learned a lot about the shafts through doing this. The 4 iron off the tee is awesome, and I was able to create about any shot I wanted off the tee with good distance. Around the green I couldn't believe how easy partial and chip shots were. Chipping with the PW and 9 I think I was more accurate than with my normal wedges. The feel on these shots was spot on and made distance control a cinch. I even hit a couple of bump and run 7 irons out from under trees and from awkward 30-40 yard fairway lies. I never practice this type of shot but each time the result was as good or better than I could have done with any other club. I think the slight kick and feel at impact just make judging distances very easy with these shafts.

 

On full shots the high I'm getting is fantastic. There have been several shots with my 4, 5, and 6 iron that normally would have landed in a hazard, but the added height and distance provided a safe landing. The ball flight these shafts produce is also very strong into the wind. Playing in central Texas most of my rounds are in a steady wind, so this was a welcome attribute. Although the flight is high I could see that the ball was not affected as much as usual. I assume this is part of the “controlled spin” that KBS claims on their site. Speaking of spin, I was very impressed with the way my ball was behaving on the green. Pretty consistently throughout my testing the ball would end up 2-3 feet from the ball mark. This was the case on most of the clubs, from the PW to the 5 iron. I have never been someone to spin the ball back so I can't say I lost any spin, but I have never seen such a consistency with my well struck shots. It makes things very predictable.

 

Obviously my confidence and trust in these shafts has grown considerably over the past few weeks. Only time will tell if this is just a honeymoon period, but right now every time I line up for an iron shot I am very confident the outcome will be excellent.

 

 

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Performance

 

 

Short Iron Performance

 

• Accuracy - The short irons have been point and shoot. I think the loss of spin has helped to cut down unwanted hooks and any balooning. I mentioned my near hole in one but I have also had several other short iron shots end up in the 3 foot range, including a couple other par 3s. That is not typical for me.

• Distance – I may have gained a few yards over the DG's, but it can't be more than 5. I never had trouble getting short irons up with any other shafts, so the only thing I can attribute the distance gain to is lower spin.

• Trajectory Characteristics - Watching the ball get up quickly and just move forward is interesting to watch. It is almost as if the ball is just forcing itself through the wind. I have never seen a ballflight quite like it. I found the height to be slightly higher than I'm used to but still very comfortable. Relative to the mid and long irons, the short irons are really not that high launching. The whole set plays almost like a flighted set, where the apex of the ball flight is about the same across the entire set.

• Control - I had no trouble keeping the ball down when I wanted to, nor was it difficult to send the ball a bit higher. When attempting to play a draw or fade, the fade has been easier to control with the short irons. I'm not sure why, but I have had a little more difficulty hitting a draw with these.

 

Short Iron Score: 96

 

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Mid Iron Performance

• Accuracy – The mid irons were not quite as on point as the short irons, but I feel like they were at least as accurate as any other shaft I have played. Just like the short irons, when you hit into the wind the ball holds its line.

• Distance – This is where I began seeing some distance gains; the added height probably gave me around 10 yards on my 6 iron. My 7 iron gained a bit less but the gapping remained manageable between the 8 and 6. Distance consistency was great. With the trusty 2-3 feet of rollout I knew just where to hit to, and what club I needed to get there.

• Trajectory Characteristics – Just like with the distance, the middle irons are where I started to see the higher ball flight claims come to life. The ball would jump up and get to its apex quickly, then remain fairly flat before landing softly with a somewhat steep descent. I am getting 8 iron height with my 6 iron now, and this is providing me with much more confidence going into greens.

• Control – Great with the mid irons. Very easy to keep it low when needed. I feel like spin is a bit higher here because it was easier to move it right and left. The ball held the green just as well as with the short irons, only 2-3 feet roll from the ball mark.

 

Mid Iron Score: 98

 

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Long Iron Performance

• Accuracy – When I put a good swing on the ball, the long irons were just as accurate as the mid irons. Wind had a minimal effect on the ball and I never had unexpected results based on my swing (I tend to pull my long irons, the shaft didn't magically fix that).

• Distance – Once again I saw some good distance gains on the long irons, probably around ten yards for my 4 and 5 iron. The 3 iron ended up being a different story. Distance actually went down because of consistently poor contact. I will go further into this in the performance notes.

• Trajectory Characteristics – As I was hoping, I got some much needed height out of these long irons. Just like the other clubs, even with the added height the wind seems to have minimal effect on the ball. The 4 iron was flying higher than ever and landing nice and soft on the green. It has turned into one of my favorite clubs in my bag.

• Control – Hitting lower shots into the wind is still very doable with the long irons, however getting the higher shot than my normal stock shot isn't as easy. I would attribute this more to my game than the equipment though. One thing I can say is that draws and fades tend to turn into hooks and slices a bit easier with the long irons.

 

Long Iron Score: 97

 

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Performance Notes

The KBS CTaper Lites are a great fit for my game. The added height has given me more scoring opportunities, knowing the ball will end up just a few feet from where it lands on the green is helping me dial in my distances, and watching the ballflight is a thing of beauty. Any increase in distance is an added bonus.

For what it's worth I did a comparison test at my local golf galaxy simulator. This was not a flightscope or anything, just their screen simulator, so take the numbers with a grain of salt. In the end I do think these figures translate to what I was seeing on the course, except the PW. Not sure where those numbers with the DG were coming from. Both shafts were in the Adams CB1.

 

----------------- Carry ------- Backspin ----Launch Angle -----Ball Speed

 

DG S300

 

3 Iron ---------- 195 ---------- 2800 ---------- 12.8 ---------- 125

6 iron ---------- 170 ---------- 4800 ---------- 17.3 ---------- 115

PW -------------- 145 ---------- 6000 ----------- 26 ------------ 91

 

KBS CTLITE

 

3 Iron ---------- 185 ---------- 2200 ---------- 13.5 ---------- 121

6 Iron ---------- 175 ---------- 4300 ---------- 17.8 ---------- 117

PW -------------- 134 ---------- 6800 ----------- 23 ------------ 97

 

 

As I mentioned in the long iron performance section, I did have an issue with the 3 iron. When I had the KBS installed I had a very hard time making solid contact and everything was fading. The club felt very light and I was probably over swinging because of it. I think the combination of the Cobra S2 forged head being a bit light and the CTaper Lites being counter balanced caused the swingweight to go down (lighter), taking away the feel of the club head. This was especially apparent when I hit the 4 and 3 iron in succession, with the 4 iron feeling much more head heavy (and comfortable).

 

Total Performance Score: 97

 

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Subjective

 

Looks

As I mentioned before, I love the look of these shafts. It is true that right out of the box they are a bit boring, but the unique brushed aluminum color, smooth stepless profile and pop of red and white from the label make these quite a sight. When put together I think they create a very classic appearance and are a huge step up any other shaft I have played in terms of looks.

 

Looks Score: 100

 

 

Feel

My first impression of the shaft upon hitting them is that they weren't as smooth as the DG. I wouldn't say that they were harsh, but there was some small amount of vibration that didn't get filtered out. I am no engineer, but I imagine the stepped design of most steel shafts serve this purpose, and the stepless design allows a bit more feedback to reach the hands. The feel was a bit clicky, to put it scientifically. On mishits, particularly out on the toe, the feel was noticeably harsher.

Through the entire set I could feel a good kick just before impact. It made the clubs feel more powerful and on solid contact really felt great. I also noticed that in the longer irons the shaft felt a bit looser. This didn't translate to a loss in accuracy, but I do think this feel corresponds with my prediction of the longer clubs producing more spin (vs DG).

I think the weight of the CTaper Lites is great. I played the stiff version so they were 110 grams, and I think this might be an ideal weight range for me; lighter than tour weight shafts but not light enough to lose feel through the swing.

 

Feel Score: 90

 

 

Likelihood of Purchase (LOP)

How likely would you be to purchase this shaft?

The KBS CTaper Lites have performed better for me than any other iron shaft I have played. Not having them would be a disservice to my game, so I would be very likely to purchase these although price would be a factor.

 

LOP Score: 98

 

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Subjective Notes

These shafts are a great fit for me, but I think some people might have an issue with the counterweighting. I think the Adams clubheads are heavy enough to limit the effect for me, but someone playing a lighter weight iron head may have more difficulty adjusting. I would also say that if soft feel at impact is paramount for anyone's shaft choice, these may not make the cut.

 

 

Total Subjective Score: 96

 

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In conclusion KBS delivered the performance high they promised. Clearly these shafts have been very kind to me thus far and I have high hopes for the future. Visually I can't see myself growing tired of looking at the penetrating ball flight or the stunning red, white, blue and silver combination. The higher ball flight with no loss of distance is an addition to my game that I have no doubt will help me shoot lower, and the delicate feel lends itself to added versatility around the green and can turn potential bogeys into pars. I have certainly played smoother feeling shafts and I'm not completely sold on the counterweighting method, but I could say the unique feel is somewhat addicting. Either way better scores always trump feel in my book. I suppose there is always the chance of the dreaded honeymoon period, but I will report back after I blaze through the rest of my rounds this summer.

 

Total Score: 96.5

 

DSC01910.JPG

 

 

The Five

1. Will this shaft go in your bag? Why or why not? Yes, absolutely. They have performed great for me so far and I played some of my best round of the year with them. The added height I get from my long irons seals the deal.

2. To whom, if anyone, would you recommend this shaft? Why? I would recommend this shaft to anyone who wants to get a higher ballflight without going to a lightweight shaft. These shafts maintain a sturdy, strong feel while giving a higher ball flight. It doesn't hurt they are gorgeous to look at as well.

3. How, if at all, did this shaft change your overall impression of KBS? This shaft made me think that KBS is truly producing shafts for a mass audience, not just tour players or long knockers.

4. What feature would you change or eliminate from the next generation of this model? I would like to see if they could make a non-counterweighted set to provide a more traditional weighted feel.

5. What feature do you really like, and would most like to see continued or evolved in future models? Did I mention I like the high flight I'm getting out of these? As long as they continue to perform as advertised KBS is on the right track.

WITB

 

Driver: Calloway Diablo Octane Tour, UST VTS Silver

Hybrids: 16* Taylormade RBZ Tour 16*, 21* TEE XCG-3

Irons: Adams CB1 4-PW, KBS C Taper Lite S

Wedges: Nike VR Pro Forged 52*, 58*

Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG3

 

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Midsize

Ball: Whatever I find, prefer Bridgestone

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Nice start Rick! Can't wait to hear how they preform over a longer period of time

Driver:   :callaway-small: Epic 10.5 set to 9.5 w/ Tour AD-DI 44.5

FW:   :cobra-small: F6 baffler set at 16º

Hybrid:  NONE
Irons:   :taylormade-small:  3i 2014 TP CB  4-PW 2011 TP MC w/ TT S400

Wedges:   :nike-small: 52º :nike-small: 56º  :edel-golf-1: 60 º w/ KBS C-Taper XS Soft-stepped

Putter:   :ping-small: Sigma G Tyne 34 inches Gold dot

 

 

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Awesome Job! Ole Escamilla!!!! These are intriguing....

 

What's in the bag:
 
Driver:  :titelist-small:TSR3; :wilson_staff_small: DynaPWR Carbon
FW Wood: :wilson_staff_small: DynaPWR 3-wood; :titleist-small: TSR 2+
Hybrids:  PXG Gen4 18-degree
Utility Irons: :srixon-small: ZX MkII 20* 
Irons:;  :Sub70:699/699 Pro V2 Combo; :wilson_staff_small: D9 Forged;  :macgregor-small:MT86 (coming soon!); :macgregor-small: VIP 1025 V-Foil MB/CB; 

Wedges:  :cleveland-small: RTX6 Zipcore
Putter: :cleveland-small: HB Soft Milled 10.5;  :scotty-small: Newport Special Select;  :edel-golf-1:  Willamette,  :bettinardi-small: BB8; :wilson-small: 8802; MATI Monto

Ball: :bridgestone-small: Tour B RXS; :srixon-small: Z-STAR Diamond; :wilson_staff_small: Triad

Stat Tracker/GPS Watch: :ShotScope:


 
Follow @golfspybarbajo

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Great work Rick! Nice intro lol

 

My wife hates the intro.

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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MS,

 

You brought up two great points. The labels are well made, and the shafts were nicely marked. The Tours I have gotten in the past were silkscreen printed on the butt. I liked that better than the stickers but none of them had fallen off and once you put tape on the butt for a grip, though I did not use any tape, the shaft labels are useless anyway.

 

ЯЯ

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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MS,

 

You brought up two great points. The labels are well made, and the shafts were nicely marked. The Tours I have gotten in the past were silkscreen printed on the butt. I liked that better than the stickers but none of them had fallen off and once you put tape on the butt for a grip, though I did not use any tape, the shaft labels are useless anyway.

 

ЯЯ

 

I will say that although the KBS labels are nice, I would prefer the silkscreen method like those Nippon Modus shafts. The chances of me sticking the labels on straight are slim to none.

 

Also Rick, are you liking the looks of the red grips on the shafts? I have some red crosslines I can use, but was leaning towards some dark blue (almost black) crosslines because of the dark finish on my Adams irons. The one picture you had with the red grip and KBS labels showing looked pretty good though.

WITB

 

Driver: Calloway Diablo Octane Tour, UST VTS Silver

Hybrids: 16* Taylormade RBZ Tour 16*, 21* TEE XCG-3

Irons: Adams CB1 4-PW, KBS C Taper Lite S

Wedges: Nike VR Pro Forged 52*, 58*

Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG3

 

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Midsize

Ball: Whatever I find, prefer Bridgestone

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Also Rick, are you liking the looks of the red grips on the shafts? I have some red crosslines I can use, but was leaning towards some dark blue (almost black) crosslines because of the dark finish on my Adams irons. The one picture you had with the red grip and KBS labels showing looked pretty good though.

 

First off, I lined up all my shafts and actually put a tic mark with a pencil to ensure that my labels were not only straight but looked good when the shafts were standing side by side. It is a small thing but really makes a huge difference in the pictures.

 

Also, I have to say that the reason I felt free to say that my first impression of these shafts was so poor, was because they had really grown on me. Same with the original C Tapers. I would prefer the looks of shiny chrome and without the labels and the grips and ferrules these look cheap, but they do look nice with all set up.

 

Yesterday, it was overcast and I was walking off the 11 green and had chipped with a 9 iron. I remarked to one of my playing partners how good the red grip looked with the satin finish shaft. I also said that might be the first time I had ever seen those together outside with out my sunglasses on. I wear them almost all the time either from the sun or the wind. But we had neither yesterday. A rare occurrence in Texas as I am sure you know.

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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Finally got my first round in with the shafts installed. Played pretty well and got a decent idea of what I will be working with. Looking forward to the next round!

WITB

 

Driver: Calloway Diablo Octane Tour, UST VTS Silver

Hybrids: 16* Taylormade RBZ Tour 16*, 21* TEE XCG-3

Irons: Adams CB1 4-PW, KBS C Taper Lite S

Wedges: Nike VR Pro Forged 52*, 58*

Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG3

 

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Midsize

Ball: Whatever I find, prefer Bridgestone

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Finally got my first round in with the shafts installed. Played pretty well and got a decent idea of what I will be working with. Looking forward to the next round!

 

I got my unboxing post to WD for editing, but wanted to say I did get a quick 18 on tese after installing them. Looking forward to the next few weeks and hope to get several rounds on them quickly. Taking them and another set to the range hopefully to compare Thursday.

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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I got my unboxing post to WD for editing, but wanted to say I did get a quick 18 on tese after installing them. Looking forward to the next few weeks and hope to get several rounds on them quickly. Taking them and another set to the range hopefully to compare Thursday.

 

 

Thanks for letting me hit em. Still impressed at the 3-iron I hit on that par 5. Good Ball flight and I like feeling the clubhead throughout the swing.

Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

Follow me:

@Hula_Rock

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My unboxing post is up: TXSTCATMAN'S UNBOXING HERE!!!

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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Got another round in with the CTLs today. First time ever to break 80! Iron play was actually really steady. Misses were only short or off by a few yards. My short game ate its Wheaties because I was chipping close every chance. Hope you guys are having as positive a test so far as I.

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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Got another round in with the CTLs today. First time ever to break 80! Iron play was actually really steady. Misses were only short or off by a few yards. My short game ate its Wheaties because I was chipping close every chance. Hope you guys are having as positive a test so far as I.

 

Congrats on breaking 80!

Driver:   :callaway-small: Epic 10.5 set to 9.5 w/ Tour AD-DI 44.5

FW:   :cobra-small: F6 baffler set at 16º

Hybrid:  NONE
Irons:   :taylormade-small:  3i 2014 TP CB  4-PW 2011 TP MC w/ TT S400

Wedges:   :nike-small: 52º :nike-small: 56º  :edel-golf-1: 60 º w/ KBS C-Taper XS Soft-stepped

Putter:   :ping-small: Sigma G Tyne 34 inches Gold dot

 

 

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Congrats on breaking 80!

 

 

Haha thanks! I felt like I was playing outta my mind.

Bag One: :taylormade-small: '16 M2, Tour AD-GP 7S

:adams-small:  XTD Ti 15*, Tour AD-GT 8S

:taylormade-small:  RBZ Stage2 Tour Issue 18.5* hybrid, Matrix Ozik Altus 85S Wilson FG Tour F5 21* hybrid, stock

:mizuno-small:  MP-H5 4-PW, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 51/08, Project X 5.5

:mizuno-small:  MP-T5, 58/10, DG Spinner

:cameron-small:  2012 Newport2, 34"

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Got another round in with the CTLs today. First time ever to break 80! Iron play was actually really steady. Misses were only short or off by a few yards. My short game ate its Wheaties because I was chipping close every chance. Hope you guys are having as positive a test so far as I.

 

Well done. I would say my test is going very positive as well. I'll save details, but I have not been disappointed so far.

WITB

 

Driver: Calloway Diablo Octane Tour, UST VTS Silver

Hybrids: 16* Taylormade RBZ Tour 16*, 21* TEE XCG-3

Irons: Adams CB1 4-PW, KBS C Taper Lite S

Wedges: Nike VR Pro Forged 52*, 58*

Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG3

 

Grips: Lamkin Crossline Midsize

Ball: Whatever I find, prefer Bridgestone

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I have not said anything to you guys because I do not want to cloud your judgement. I will not say what I think if these shafts yet, but I hope my wife does not throw down the gauntlet of either her or these shafts because I really like her.:lol:

:taylormade-small:  SIM2 Max 9° on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  6S 

:taylormade-small:  SIM TI 3w  on  Graphite Design  Tour AD DJ  7S 

:taylormade-small:  GAPR Mid 3i on Graphite Design  Tour AD DI  7S 

:taylormade-small: P790 Black 4-S 
on :kbs: TGI 80S
 

:taylormade-small: Hi Toe 58°  on :kbs: Hi Rev

:L.A.B.:  DF2.1 on :accra: x L.A.B. White

:titelist-small: AVX  

:918457628_PrecisionPro: Precision Pro  NX7 Pro

All grips are BestGrips Micro-Perforated

 

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I have not said anything to you guys because I do not want to cloud your judgement. I will not say what I think if these shafts yet, but I hope my wife does not throw down the gauntlet of either her or these shafts because I really like her.:lol:

It's all good as long as she doesn't give you the "shaft" I guess! Haha! :lol:

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Got another round in with the CTLs today. First time ever to break 80! Iron play was actually really steady. Misses were only short or off by a few yards. My short game ate its Wheaties because I was chipping close every chance. Hope you guys are having as positive a test so far as I.

 

 

THAT IS WHAT i AM TALKING ABOUT......

 

Bring that game Saturday Bro. Fair Oaks Ranch 9:42.

Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

Follow me:

@Hula_Rock

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