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Q&A: Aldila dominates with its Rogue shafts, the new Rogue I/O

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When it comes to Tour usage, few shafts can claim the popularity of Aldila’s Rogue, which became available to professional golfers just 18 months ago. In that short time, the shafts have been used to win a whopping 24 PGA Tour events, including two major championships and back-to-back FedEx Cups.

That’s impressive, but this stat is almost unheard of in today’s hyper-competitive golf shaft market. Aldila’s Rogue Silver 70 Tour X shaft was the most used model of driver shaft on the PGA Tour for 44 consecutive weeks.

Rogue_LE_70X_Silver

The Rogue Limited Edition 70 TX shaft has an extremely low torque, 2.5 degrees.

The success from the PGA Tour has carried down to regular golfers, whose demand for the shaft has resulted in it becoming a stock option for several major equipment manufactures, including Callaway, Exotics, TaylorMade and Titleist.

What makes the Rogue shaft a great fit for the best golfers in the world, as well as everyday golfers? What are the differences between the different Rogue shaft models? What do golfers need to know about Aldila’s new Rogue I/O shaft? We asked John Oldenburg, Vice President of Engineering for Aldila, those questions and more in the Q&A below.

WRX: Did it seem possible that Rogue shafts could become this popular 18 months ago? What made them so unbelievably successful?

JO: The success of the Rogue even took me by surprise. We knew we had a great product with exciting new technology, but the way it took off on Tour was unexpected. Because of the cost and availability of the unique Graphitic Carbon material used in the Rogue we initially planned a very, very limited run of the Rogue shafts even for Tour. But once the Tour demand and success skyrocketed, we made arrangements to increase our material supply. I can honestly say the Rogue shaft is our most successful Tour product ever in terms of wins in drivers. And it doesn’t seem to be letting up. Charl Schwartzl switched to the Rogue this fall and just won the Alfred Dunhill in South Africa. And where I had initially forecast that I would be able to sell 50 to 100 pieces of the $799 Rogue Limited Edition (Made in the USA) model, we actually passed 1,000 units sold over a month ago. 

Jordan Spieth uses an Aldila Rogue Limited Edition Black shaft (60X), which creates more spin than the Rogue Silver.

Jordan Spieth uses an Aldila Rogue Limited Edition Black shaft (60TX) in his Titleist 915D2 driver, which has a higher torque and creates more spin than the Rogue Limited Edition Silver.

I think the success of the Rogue can be pinned on three factors. First, the flex profile was based off of very successful profiles that were developed, tested, and played on Tour in the past going all way back to the NV. The second was the addition of the Graphitic Carbon, whose extreme stiffness allowed us to develop a product with a proven flex profile that was lighter and lower in torque than any of our previous products. And third is the fact that we counterbalanced the shaft. Modern driver heads with all their adjustable weighting and hosel features have been getting heavier and heavier. By counterbalancing the Rogue, Tour technicians could build a club with a heavier head and still get an acceptable swing weight for the player. Heavier heads allow greater inertial mass to be delivered to the ball, which is very good for performance. But, we didn’t simply counterbalance the Rogue and leave it at that. We adjusted the overall shaft frequency and tip stiffness to account for the increased inertial mass. More mass in the head makes a shaft play softer, so we stiffened the Rogue proportionally so that it would have the extraordinary performance characteristics of its predecessors when paired with today’s modern heavier driver heads. And, voila, it worked out awesome!

WRX: What’s the difference between the Rogue Limited Edition (Made in the USA) shafts and the other Rogue shaft models?

JO: The major difference between the Rogue Limited Edition and the Rogue Tour is where the shafts are made. The Rogue Limited Edition shafts are made in very small batches here in our R&D prototype facility in Poway, California. The Rogue Tour shafts are made in our manufacturing plant in Vietnam on our standard production lines. The Rogue Tour products also use a slightly different grade of Graphitic Carbon material then the Limited Edition models. This was done because we could not secure a large enough supply of the 125 MSI graphitic carbon for large scale production runs.

Aldila's Rogue Limited Edition shafts are made in the U.S., and use a 125 MSI "Graphitic Carbon" construction.

Aldila’s Rogue Limited Edition shafts are made in the U.S., and use a 125 MSI “Graphitic Carbon” construction.

The Rogue Silver Tour shafts use a graphitic carbon material with a modulus of 110 MSI, which is still nearly twice as stiff as any graphite material used in any of our other premium products or any products produced by our competitors. The Rogue Black Tour shafts use graphitic carbon with a stiffness of 95 MSI. This is done because the Rogue Black is a softer, slightly higher torque product designed for a slightly higher ball flight and more moderate spin than the Rogue Silver. Besides the point of manufacture and the change in the graphitic carbon, the rest of the design and materials are identical between the Rogue Limited Edition shafts and the Rogue Tour shafts. They are built on exactly the same tooling and all the Rogues — Limited Edition and Tour — incorporate Aldila’s NexGen Micro Laminate materials along with the Graphitic Carbon. The Rogue Tour products are in no way downgrades from the Rogue Limited Edition. They are simply adjusted to account for material availability and production capacity.

WRX: Due to the increased stiffness of the Rogue shafts, are you seeing players using softer flexes than they have in the past? Are Tour players tipping the shafts as much as they have previous products?

JO: We don’t really see any pros using softer flexes or really tipping the shafts much less.  Again, we adjusted the shaft stiffness to account for the increased inertial mass created by the heavier heads. So, although the Rogues may frequency stiffer on a frequency machine than most of our previous tour product, from a playing standpoint, the dynamic stiffness when accounting for the increased loading due to the increase in head weight, is very, very similar to previous Tour products. We made the adjustments necessary to offset the effects of the heavier heads so the pros and the folks in the Tour trailers wouldn’t need to do anything different.

WRX: How does the new Rogue I/O compare to the original Rogue shafts?

JO: The new Rogue I/O is a merger of the Rogue product with R.I.P. Technology. R.I.P., which stands for Reverse Interlaminar Placement, moves the torque core (bias plies) from the interior to the exterior of the shaft laminate stack in the tip section. Hence the name I/O, for Inside-Out. Moving the bias plies, which control shaft torque and aid in cross sectional stability, to the outside of the shaft makes more efficient use of the these fibers to lower the torque of the tip section (the highest torque part of a shaft) without adding weight by moving the material further from the shafts neutral axis — an engineering term, trust me it works. 

Rogue_IO_tip

Related: Enter to win an Aldila Rogue I/O shaft

R.I.P. technology also helps to stabilize the bending of the tip section of the shaft by providing additional cross-sectional stiffness to reduce lateral deformation. The Rogue I/O utilizes the same “Graphitic Carbon” technology, counterbalancing and inertial flex adjustment as the original Rogue products, combined with torque lowering and tip stabilizing R.I.P. technology. In Tour testing, the Rogue I/O Silver has a slightly lower launch and spin rate than the original Rogue Silver.

The Rogue I/O is already in play on the PGA Tour in the drivers of players in the top 50 of the World Golf Rankings and was used by one player for a top-5 finish in the Hero World Challenge.

WRX: Anything else, John?

JO: Keep your eyes open for some exciting new Rogue designs on Tour this coming year.

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19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. jaymehuron

    Dec 30, 2015 at 11:45 am

    Switched from the Rouge Silver 110 mis 70x to the Fujikura Fuel 70x Tour Spec. I did not dislike the Rouge, but the Fujikura just had a much tighter shot dispersion and better spin and lunch numbers for me. The Rouge was the stock offering in my 915 D2 and the first Aldila shaft I bought in a long time. I think their shafts are getting much better but still not to the level of the Fujikura’s in my option

  2. Bob

    Dec 22, 2015 at 5:40 am

    “The Rogue Tour products are in no way downgrades from the Rogue Limited Edition. They are simply adjusted to account for material availability and production capacity.”

    I don’t believe you.

  3. Droopy

    Dec 22, 2015 at 3:41 am

    Shaft tip droop. The heads are too heavy for us to hold it firm enough. We all need the blue pill for it. Or Cialis.

  4. Lowell

    Dec 21, 2015 at 8:32 pm

    I lover my Rogue Black. Have them in my driver and 3 wood.

  5. ph00ny

    Dec 21, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    Lower launch and spin than current Rogue Silver. Sounds like a music to my ears

    • ph00ny

      Dec 21, 2015 at 1:58 pm

      This is coming from someone who’s currently using Rogue Silver 70x in both E8 Beta 3 wood and M1 Driver

    • Jay

      Dec 22, 2015 at 3:27 pm

      Strange, because I personally found the I/O to feel a touch smoother than the standard Rogue Silver, and launch and spin just a smidgen higher. But there ya go, that’s what you get from a guy who stands on the other side of the ball!

      • ph00ny

        Dec 24, 2015 at 11:06 am

        Regular Rogue Silver 110MSI 70x is really smooth for me. I was just showing joy for the statement made by the gentleman from Aldila who said the I/O will spin and launch touch lower than Rogue Silver in tour testing

        So i/o spin and launch slightly higher than Rogue Silver? damn

      • ph00ny

        Dec 24, 2015 at 11:08 am

        Other shaft that i really want is the 125MSI.

        I was launching the M1 with 110MSI 70x at 16*+ even at 6.5* loft setting

  6. William

    Dec 21, 2015 at 11:56 am

    So are all 125msi Silvers made in USA, or are some made in Vietnam as well?

  7. Tom

    Dec 21, 2015 at 11:34 am

    I have been a fan of Aldila products for nearly a decade. They continue to amaze me with innovative and quality shafts. Thank you for the informative Q&A.

  8. Curt

    Dec 21, 2015 at 11:23 am

    I have the limited 125MSI in my D4 and my 915F. Spectacular, explains it all!!

    • JustTrying2BAwesome

      Dec 21, 2015 at 1:55 pm

      Rogue 125 & 915 D4. Heck of a combo right there. How do you like it? How long will it be in the bag?

      • Curt

        Dec 23, 2015 at 4:42 pm

        Its great, but like any good Wrx’r only until the next combo unseats it!

    • Droopy

      Dec 22, 2015 at 3:42 am

      I’ll bomb past you with my M1

      • Curt

        Dec 22, 2015 at 2:35 pm

        That keyboard gives you a lot of confidence. If you happen to be near me, let’s put it to the test!?!? BTW, can’t stand the look of the M1, just looks cheap like a toy.

      • Adam

        Dec 23, 2015 at 3:55 pm

        And next week it will be your M2 than M3……

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19th Hole

Puma launches new X Collection that Rickie Fowler will debut at this week’s Open Championship

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Puma Golf has launched its new X Collection which is inspired in part by the celebration of Rickie Fowler’s 10-year partnership with the company. Fowler will debut the collection this week at the 148th Open Championship in Royal Portrush.

The collection features traditional fabrics and patterns of the British Isles, incorporating houndstooth detailing and a navy, green and white color palette that pays homage to the region where golf was born.

“Rickie’s style has evolved over the years, starting various fashionable trends in on course wear by blending influences from streetwear and modern fashion. Today, his style reflects both a maturation in his game and personal confidence, and the X Collection was designed to reflect that transition in an elegant way.” – Grant Knudson, Head of Product Creation, Puma.

Puma X Collection

Causeway Jacket – $140

Featuring an antiqued zipper, button closure, hand pockets and a traditional houndstooth pattern, the Causeway Jacket is both water and wind-resistant and comes in a peacoat colorway.

Antrim Pant – $110

The Antrim Pant features a polyester-wool blend fabric and subtle houndstooth pattern, while the waistband contains a hook and bar closure. The pant is designed to wear both on and off the course and is available in a peacoat colorway.

Donegal Polo – $85

Designed with a longer four-button placket and a front chest pocket that features a discoverable houndstooth accent pattern on the inside that matches the interior of the neck. The Donegal is available in bright white, Irish green and peacoat colorways.

Skerries Polo – $85

Containing a deconstructed houndstooth pattern throughout the body of the shirt, the Skerries utilizes a premium, moisture-wicking, technical fabric with a rib-knit collar, and is available in bright white, Irish green and peacoat hues.

Dunluce ¼ Zip Pullover – $120

Featuring a premium pima cotton cashmere blend fabric, the Dunluce contains an antiqued zipper, a contrast green tipping on the collar, ribbed cuffs and comes in peacoat-Irish green or quiet shade-Irish green.

P 110 X Cap – $30

The P 110 X Cap features a raised leather P logo to complement the moisture-wicking sweatband and slight curve brim and is available in both peacoat and white shade bodies each with a brown leather P detailing.

IGNITE PROADAPT X Shoes – $220

Containing all of the benefits included in the brand’s original IGNITE PROADAPT shoes, the X version comes in a peacoat body with Irish green and bright white colors.

All of Puma’s X Collection is available now to purchase at Pumagolf.com as well as select retailers.

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Equipment

WRX Spotted: Mizuno MP-20 irons, T20 wedge on USGA Conforming list

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Thanks to WRX Member mrmikeac, we have some photos that confirm the new Mizuno line will, in fact, be the MP20, along with a new T-Series wedge: the T20.

We don’t have details from Mizuno yet beyond the pictures from the USGA’s site, but there appear to be four different models of irons including an SEL (something, something, lefty?) set which is good news for you southpaws.

There has been lots of discussion so far in the forums, along with a speculation piece written by or own Ryan Barath (One Post Many Questions – New Mizuno Speculation).

The models are

MP20 (Blade) 

MP20 MMC (Multi-Material Cavity)

MP20 HMB

Speculated to be Hot Metal Blade thanks to the Chromoloy on the hosel, there are two versions on the USGA list, which could also mean a blended set with solid forged irons in the shorter clubs.

MP20 SEL

T20 wedge

We’re going to have to wait until confirmation from Mizuno to get all the details but join in the discussion in the GolfWRX forums.

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Forum Thread of the Day: “New set of irons on a budget of $500-$700?”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from GarhawlR who is on the hunt for a new set of irons and is looking for suggestions on how to get the best bang for his buck with a budget of between $500 and $700. Our members disclose their advice for how to go about filling your bag if you’re on a budget.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • rgk5: “Pre-owned Srixon 585 or Wilson Staff W6 will fit the budget. Maltby irons are okay but will have virtually no resale value down the road.”
  • PushDrawFlush: “$500-700 is plenty to find new-to-me forged irons. I’d keep an eye out for some Srixon z745/765 if you want something similar to your MP25s but a little chunkier/more forgiving.”
  • T.B: “Sub 70 and hogans. Maltby makes great clubs. You have a lot of options at that price range. Take your time, and you’ll find something you really want.”
  • revenant: “You should be able to do this without much trouble. My MP-4s (3-PW) were $280 from global golf with minimal face wear (good grooves and no rust/wear spots).”

Entire Thread: “New set of irons on a budget of $500-$700”

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