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The drivers that the Top 10 longest hitters on the PGA Tour are using

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What drivers do the PGA Tour’s longest golfers use to bomb their tee shots? Here’s a tally of what the top 10 in driving distance on Tour are using by driver manufacturer.

  • Cleveland: 2
  • Callaway: 1
  • Nike: 1
  • Ping: 1
  • Titleist: 2
  • TaylorMade: 3

But this is GolfWRX, so of course you want to know more. Below is a breakdown of the driving-distance leaders on the PGA Tour in 2014-2015, the specifics of their drivers, shafts and how far their average tee shots flew.

*Denotes photo is not the player’s gamer driver, but a stock image

10. Keegan Bradley

KeeganBradleyWITB

Driver: Cleveland Classic 290 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Pro 63X Tour Spec
Average driving distance: 306.1 yards

9. Patrick Rodgers*

NikeVaporPro-681x456

Driver: Nike Vapor Fly prototype (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution 757 (X-Flex)
Average driving distance: 307.7 yards

8. Brooks Koepka*

Titleistd4

Driver: Titleist 915D4 (9.5  degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon Kuro Kage S 70X
Average driving distance: 308.2 yards

7. Tony Finau*

TonyFinau

Driver: Callaway XR Pro (9 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI-8X
Average driving distance: 309 yards

6. Charlie Beljan

CharlieBeljanDriver

Driver: Cleveland Classic 290 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Miyazaki B. Asha 5X
Average driving distance: 309.8 yards

5. J.B. Holmes*

JB_Holmes_Driver_M1_430

Driver: TaylorMade M1 430 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Pro Tour Spec 83X (Made for J.B. Holmes)
Average driving distance: 309.9 yards

See all the clubs J.B. Holmes is playing

4. Adam Scott

Titleistd5

Driver: Titleist 915D5 Prototype (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon Kuro Kage Silver TiNi 80X
Average driving distance: 311.6 yards

See all the clubs Adam Scott is playing

3. Jason Day*

TaylorMade460

Driver: TaylorMade M1 460 (10.5 degrees, adjusted to 9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon KuroKage S TiNi 70X (tipped 1 inch)
Average driving distance: 313.7 yards

See all the clubs Jason Day is playing

2. Bubba Watson

BubbaWatson

Driver: Ping G30 (9 degrees at 8.25)
Shaft: Grafalloy Bi-Matrix Rocket Pink X-Flex (tipped 0.5 inches)
Length/Swing Weight: 44.5 inches, D4
Average driving distance: 315.2 yards

See all the clubs Bubba Watson is playing

1. Dustin Johnson*

TaylorMade460

Driver: TaylorMade M1 460 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution 661X (tipped 1 inch)
Length/Swing Weight: 45 inches, D7
Average driving distance: 317.7 yards

See all the clubs Dustin Johnson is playing

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56 Comments

56 Comments

  1. bim

    Dec 11, 2017 at 10:50 am

    i don’t understand how a left hander can get into this list

  2. Stephen A Davis

    Jun 8, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    Guys- like most people you tend to focus on what a pro is using- not me- I want to know who that 70 year old is doing to hit 350 yard drives, and 9 irons 200 yards! Me I am 70 years old in July 2017, I use a Taylor Made 2013 head with my replacement shaft which is an EXTRA stiff graffalloy x65 gram extra stiff shaft. I hit it 245 yards with a 5 -10 yard draw, nine iron 135 stiff shaft yards made by yards Gigagolf , TRX PowerMax Slot Irons. with a solid 8 handicap. Who give a rats behind on all the million dollar precision clubs which , except touring pros can obtain. Where the news on my style of Golf that real golfers need. not bragging, but I ain’t half bad. Plus I use
    A U S MADE TAPE MEASURE ( real feet) ((not a Chinese foot) TO CHECK MY YARDAGE, NOT TV HYPE!

  3. Merle

    Jan 18, 2016 at 4:22 am

    Appreciation to my father who stated to me regarding this weblog, this website is truly awesome.

  4. Tourgrinder

    Dec 28, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    Bad attention to detail by Golfwrx. Not a big deal, but I wanted to see where both Day and Johnson placed the movable weights on the M1. Then I noticed the photo shown is the same photo, most probably a TM stock photo and not the actual M1 head of either golfer. And I here I thought Golfwrx was into full and complete details and real, true photos of the actual clubs. The Cleveland photo shown is most likely a stock photo as well, although not as objectionable because of its nature.

  5. Benny

    Dec 26, 2015 at 6:40 pm

    I loved this article. So much that I searched hard for a Tour Issue Cleveland. I went right toYTC’s (your tour collection) ebay site and bought a Tour Issue Cleveland 290 Classic 9.0 / 2* open, (thanks Marc for the deal)! Lets hope I can bomb it like Keegan come spring…

  6. Pingback: The Drivers the Top 10 Bombers on the PGA Tour Use | Honourable Society of Golf Fanatics

  7. SeanM

    Dec 23, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    Eight different drivers among the 10 longest hitters. Further proof that it’s the “Indian, not the arrow”. These 10 guys could play any one of those 8 drivers and still land in the top ten longest.

    • JohnTNO

      Dec 23, 2015 at 7:00 pm

      Really don’t think Bubba could 😉

      • Jack

        Dec 23, 2015 at 11:04 pm

        I think he’ll still out drive me with my right handed driver though!

    • Gorden

      Dec 26, 2015 at 10:24 pm

      It is the Indian with a team of fitters for each one….as for we armatures it is up to how you feel about the company who’s name in on the product. IE, if your a Callaway guy or a Ping fan you will find the Cleveland and Taylormade a piece of junk, as if your a Cleveland guy you find Ping and Callaway nothing but a waste…….that is the fun of golf play what you like because that is what your going to play best with (unless your under 18 years old with a lot of professional swing coaches leaning you to one club or the other, the Country Club kid with access to every club on the planet).

  8. justincase

    Dec 23, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    This is a Lazy report. How about the lengths of the drivers and the swingweights of each one. Grade: D

    • Matt Tippin

      Dec 26, 2015 at 6:53 pm

      It’s awesome when morons like you ask for things that are stated in the article. justincase you get an F.

  9. Carlos Danger

    Dec 23, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    Im always amazed at the weight of the shaft the Pros who use the Cleveland Classic have. 50-60 grams

    Im no pro, but I hit it a long ways and would have no idea what to do with a club that light…maybe I should try:)

    • Tom

      Dec 23, 2015 at 3:32 pm

      justincase all the info is available in the above article just piont and click.

  10. Pingback: Which is the Best Driver for 2016? - D'Lance GolfD'Lance Golf

  11. JJ

    Dec 23, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    it should be noted how the PGA tour calculates “Average Driving Distance”, Two par fours or fives are selected for each round. The holes chosen are ones that play down wind and down grade. The tour takes the average distance of those two drives, Not saying that the above players don’t bomb it, but the numbers are slightly distorted to help sell equipment and advertising.

    • Jack

      Dec 23, 2015 at 11:06 pm

      That’s interesting. But it’s still very hard to average 300 yards. Occasionally bomb a 300 yarder possible, but average!

    • Pete the Pro

      Dec 24, 2015 at 6:51 am

      Nearly right. The figures are collected for various reasons. One of them is to better inform golfers about performance. If the manufacturers failed to capitalise on the better results, it would be unusual. In my view, there is nothing wrong in trying to sell golf equipment. Golf instructors, for instance, use data collected to help inform their clients. Club fitters use the data to assist golfers get fitted with the best clubs for them. Measurement is two holes but they need to be wider faiways on a good driving hole where the players are most likely to use the driver. Data becomes complex if it’s a narrow par 4 and half the field hit 3 wood, hybrid and longer iron for position.

    • mhendon

      Dec 24, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      Well unless they’ve changed the way they choose the two measuring holes you’re wrong. As I’ve always understood it they try to choose two hole in opposite direction so one is down wind and one into the wind and generally they try to choose flater holes where the majority of the field will hit driver.

  12. Jon

    Dec 23, 2015 at 10:22 am

    That is somewhat of an eclectic mix, especially with Cleveland having to representatives in the mix and Callaway with just one. The one item I would like to know is the playing length of these drivers. How many are 45″ and under? Or 45″ and over?

    • Tom

      Dec 23, 2015 at 3:35 pm

      you must be using an app that doesn’t allow you to see ( it’s there) the information your requesting?

      • Jon

        Dec 24, 2015 at 9:48 am

        Sorry, my bad. I guess 2 of the 10 are listed and the 2 that are listed, Bubba & DJ, are the ones I didn’t look at.

  13. Simon

    Dec 23, 2015 at 1:39 am

    Cleveland classic is still a beast of a club.

  14. Liv2Golf

    Dec 22, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    One thing is very apparent. There is no magic club, shaft or swing that creates power & distance. You just have to find what works for you!

  15. Chuck D

    Dec 22, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    I like seeing Kuro K representing with 3 shafts in the mix!

  16. emb

    Dec 22, 2015 at 10:19 pm

    I find it funny that there are two cleveland drivers on here and I have literally never seen anyone, anywhere, EVER, using one. Not saying its not a good driver as obviously its being used well by many pro’s, just I’ve never seen anyone who’s not a pro using one.

    • cody

      Dec 23, 2015 at 12:01 pm

      it is what i play.

      • Carlos Danger

        Dec 23, 2015 at 12:49 pm

        has he ever seen you?

        • cody

          Dec 23, 2015 at 4:59 pm

          no, but i was simply stating there is at least one person out three. On this forum at one time it was very popular. up there with a 9016d

    • Regis

      Dec 23, 2015 at 12:34 pm

      Not that I count for much but I gamed a few Cleveland Drivers recently including the 588 and the Black. They are great drivers, especially for the money and especially for lower swing speed golfers. The only problem I see is that a some of their recent offerings are not adjustable and although they come with very good stock shafts-Matrix Black Tie and Mitsubishi Bassara E Series they do not offer the wide variety of stock shaft options that are offered by the big sellers. They are also not a big presence in big box stores. But I see a few in guys’ bags and any Senior or low SS player should seek them out.

    • Tom

      Dec 23, 2015 at 3:42 pm

      One of the best kept secrets.

    • Jack

      Dec 23, 2015 at 11:07 pm

      It’s a good club. I’ve tried it before, and it’s well regarded. I think the styling is a bit classic, but that’s intended!

    • tiger168

      Aug 15, 2016 at 3:09 pm

      how arrogant of opinion and close minded golfer!

      I always pay respect to other golfers on the course and praise their good drive with whatever big stick they have at the time.

      I also do that in the parking lot when people bring classics to the courses. Nice driver, I always say, And you will hear a lot of interesting stories and make a lot of friends.

  17. Jack

    Dec 22, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    Are these more what we shouldn’t be using then? Yeah I know we need to get fitted etc to be sure, but I’m pretty sure most of us’ swings are nothing like the pro’s. I went to an indoor range last night (don’t know how accurate but it’s close) I can max out 260 in no wind, flat conditions, but my average is only 220. Yeah those mis hits and hooks count too. These guys all average over 300. I used to tell people that I hit 250 when people ask (but of course they didn’t say average LOL). But max and average really is not the same thing. Changing up my swing so hopefully will get some consistency and distance gains.

    • Ian

      Dec 23, 2015 at 12:43 pm

      If this helps you as much as it’s helped me you can check out an iPhone app (also works on newer iPads) from the app store: Perfect Form Golf.
      For the price of a bucket of balls it helped me to acquire tempo (since mine was crap), this allowed me the timing to finish my shoulder turn, get my hands extended but with relaxed wrists, then get my elbows in front on the down swing with the net result I got huge distance gains.
      But since the effort level had dropped I could also keep accuracy. Your mileage may vary but I went from 200-220 to 285-300 (yeah, I know, my golf buds didn’t believe me either until they saw it for themselves). I then used the app to compare my irons, chipping/pitching, and even putting to a 3D motion capture avatar of a pro swing against mine in slo-mo, and got improvements there as well.
      For whatever reason actually seeing the differences overlaid, versus being told about them seem to be the key to getting really fast improvement. My swing is a work in progress and winter up here slows things down, but I was pretty much blown away at how far from a decent swing mine actually was, and how quickly I could start bringing the pieces together for decent tempo and kinetic sequence. Like I say, your mileage may vary but I guarantee there will be some significant component that you will be able to modify to get closer to your goal.

  18. Joey5Picks

    Dec 22, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    I want to know what kind of socks the shortest hitters wear so I can avoid those.

  19. mhendon

    Dec 22, 2015 at 8:32 pm

    I find it interesting both Titleist players are using prototype models not available to the public. For years people ragged on taylormade for that very reason. Oh and if I’m not mistaken I believe Keegan is using a Srixon driver unless he went back to the Cleveland.

    • Tim

      Dec 22, 2015 at 9:58 pm

      Went back to the cleveland, but he’s using a 53 gram shaft made specifically for him. Not the 63 it says above.

    • emb

      Dec 22, 2015 at 10:16 pm

      D4 is available at retail thru titleist’s MOTO program

    • Prime21

      Dec 22, 2015 at 10:42 pm

      The D4 is available, pay attention.

      • mhendon

        Dec 24, 2015 at 9:47 pm

        I actually knew that and figured I get corrected on that one. But to me if its not in retail and it’s a major up charge to get it then it’s still an exotic head similar to what Taylormade was always complained about by so many WRX’ers.

  20. jon

    Dec 22, 2015 at 7:23 pm

    guys, he’s just the listing clubs that the top 10 longest hitters use, he’s not saying that the top 10 hitters have gotten in this list BECAUSE of their clubs.

  21. tom

    Dec 22, 2015 at 6:36 pm

    Pretty cool there are two Cleveland Classics on there.

    • Tom

      Dec 22, 2015 at 8:51 pm

      I agree. Absolutely love my Classic 290 even though I only hit it 250.

  22. DJ

    Dec 22, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Is Rory not on here due to not enough rounds or what? With koepka and finau going Nike, they will have 4 guys on this list if you include Rory

    • Benny

      Dec 23, 2015 at 6:46 pm

      Thats correct. Rory was shown in the putting article but was the only one not to have Strokes Gained Putting because he did not meet the approved amounts.

  23. Tim

    Dec 22, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    Get Tom Stickney on here to write a real article about what these 10 guys do similarly in their swings. They could all hit it the same if you swap the sticks…

  24. Chris

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    I am nearly positive the shafts Jason Day, Adam Scott, and Brooks Koepka are using are the kuro kage xts, not the regular kuro kage tini.

  25. cody

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    I like seeing the cleveland on there. That is what i play. mine is the tour version as well with a 3 degree open head.

  26. Michael

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    Silly season on WRX.

  27. Johnny Utah

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    What I would like to see is:

    The grips, the shafts, the wedges the top players are using.

    • Andrew

      Dec 22, 2015 at 4:41 pm

      There’s a link under each player about showing their WITB.

      Pretty sure though you’ll mainly find wedges by their sponsors, golf pride tour velvet and some variant of Dynamic Gold Tour Issue across all the players

    • Prime21

      Dec 22, 2015 at 10:46 pm

      Geez, I guess they better do an article on that then, cause you’re quite important. You do realize they have a WITB on EVERY player right?! R E A D

  28. Ryan

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    So they are playing what they are paid to play… WOW.

    The putter article was a little more significant, as some were using a non sponsored brand… this is one, i dunno.

    What is next? “The HATS the least tan players on tour are wearing?”

  29. juels

    Dec 22, 2015 at 4:10 pm

    Um… These guys could all hit Tour Exotics, Mizunos, Wilson or any other brand that still releases quality equipment and still be in the top 10….

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Equipment

Mizuno T20 wedges: Let’s get spinning

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Spin.

We’re always trying to reduce it with our driver and increase it with our wedges for maximum control, but with the rules of golf being so strict, how do actually achieve a performance gain? Simple engineering…

This is the Mizuno T20 wedge.

It’s been a few years since we have seen a T (teardrop) wedge from our friends at Mizuno, and there is good reason.

Let’ get into a quick history lesson: before the JPX900 series was introduced, Mizuno had quietly been realigning the product cycles of the MP and JPX lines. You might remember back a few years ago now before the MP18s hit the scene that there was a bit of a lull in the MP line—so much, in fact, there was even a thread here on GolfWRX asking “Is Mizuno not making MP irons anymore?”

It was a naturally curious question to a company that always had very standardized release cycles, but it was a long-term play that has paid off tremendously. We now get “T” wedges with MP irons (MP20s to be exact), and we should (from everything I know) continue to see “S” Silhouette (more rounded profile) wedges with future JPX lines.

Before we get to what’s new, how about we first talk about what will be staying the same

  • Grain Flow Forged HD – like all new Mizuno irons, the T20s are made using the same forging process to increase the density of the material in the clubhead for an improved solid feel.
  • Boron – this little element when added to the 1025e mild carbon steel used in the wedges (we’re talking trace amounts equating to 3ppm – parts per million) increases the strength of the material by 30 percent—how crazy is that for chemistry? This improves groove life and has ZERO effect on club feel.
  • Variable Width & Depth Quad Cut Grooves – Like previous T and S wedges, the T20s will have quad cut grooves that will vary in shape based on the loft of the club. Lower lofted wedges are more narrow and deeper, while higher lofted wedges are wider and more shallow since impact happens at lower speeds this increases spin consistency.
  • Same beautiful Teardrop profile from address

So what’s new?

Flow. Just like the MP20s, engineers are bringing more a more extreme CG (center of gravity) shifting philosophy, or as Mizuno explains it, increased vertical moment of inertia to the wedges. As much as you (well maybe not “you,” depending on who you are) might think “a wedge is just a wedge” and loft is the only deciding factor for spin, you couldn’t be further from the truth. By relocating the CG throughout the set and changing the sweet spot height, engineers can further alter the launch and spin precisely for each loft.

It’s about gear effect—the higher you hit above the CG the less spin the ball with have, and the closer to or lower you make impact compared to the CG the more spin you will create. Either way these are wedges, so a 50 degree, for example, is still going to spin, but it is now more controllable (think less likely to ballon or get too high on full shots). On the other side of the equation, a 60-degree wedge will allow for even MORE trajectory and spin control for the low flying quick checkers with zip.

Now about that spin.

By the Rules of Golf, you can’t make grooves sharper, you can’t increase their volume, and you can only have so much surface roughness (sorry but that old Spin Doctor wedge is HIGHLY NON-conforming). So what do you do? You change the way you think about that surface roughness…

Hydroflow Micro Grooves

Instead of traditional laser etching parallel to the grooves, Mizuno engineers took a concept from the high-performance tire world and went perpendicular to the grooves and parallel to the direction the ball moves up the face to channel moisture away. This directional tread has proven to increase spin on shots especially in conditions with moisture up to 1,200 RPM (on a 60-yard shot), that’s a very tangible number. It’s not just about spin either: the more the friction that can be created also means more control on launch angle and less of a “floating” ball flight. That’s how those low zippers keep zippin’!

Don’t think for a second that Mizuno just changed the etching and was done with it. The process went through multiple iterations to figure out how they could improve its life (beyond the boron) and the solution was to etch before the chroming process to elongate the lifespan. The other groovy take for the T20s is the actual reconfiguration of the grooves. To get the bottom groove closer to the leading edge without having it disorient the overall look of the club and making it appear that the heel or toe is thinner on one side. The lowest groove has been shortened and centered.

All of these refinements; CG, micro-grooves, and reconfigured scoring lines add up to one thing: more control and improved shotmaking with your wedges.

Finishes, specs, and grinds

The wishes of many have been answered when it comes to the T20s, there will be a RAW finish (happy dance time) along with traditional chrome and the signature blue ion. Leftys will only be able to get chrome, but all the same options will be available as far as lofts and grinds.

Coming in lofts from 46-60 degrees, the grind options progress depending on the loft and bounce. Going from full-soled in the lower lofts to more aggressive back edge, and heel-toe relief in the 60 degree. These sole shapes came directly from Mizuno’s craftsman that worked with players and prototypes to determine exactly how the bounce and sole shapes should work in harmony.

All of this has come together to create Mizuno’s finest wedge to date.

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Equipment

Mizuno MP-20: Layers of feel

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“Mizuno Feel”

It is part of the golf vernacular. It’s ingrained in golf (nerd) culture—it’s a real thing.

But where does it comes from, how did it get here, and what is it really?

I’m here to give you some answers and introduce you to MP-20 family of irons from Mizuno.

Born from tradition, and the idea of creating the ultimate set of irons for every player, the MP-20 family is the next series of MP irons that will connect golfers to the “Mizuno Feel.” Speaking to tradition, and something I touched on when these were originally teased on social channels with #LayersOfFeel, Mizuno is going back in time to the TN-87s and reintroducing a copper underlay to their irons—all of them! (Before someone tries to correct me: yes, I realize that they have done this for more recent Japan market models )

What does this copper layer mean? Here’s the funny thing, even Mizuno has had a hard time trying to quantify it. Through multiple rounds of extensive blind prototype testing with all of their staff players, the irons with a copper underlay won on feel EVERY SINGLE TIME!  How’s that for dominance?

But why? They are truly still trying to 100 percent figure that out. Mizuno has used its HIT (Harmonic Impact Technology), metallurgy analysis, and every test it can to try and figure out why. Engineers even went as far as trying to prove the hypothesis the copper underlay “feel” was based on nostalgia but time and time again Cu won in blind testing. At the end day, the human element was still the deciding factor because humans are the ones that ultimately hit shots.

This brings us to the flagship MP-20 (Blade) (The Ultimate Tour Blade as described by Mizuno’s Product Manager & Engineer Chris Voshall). Evolving from the tradition built into the MP-18, and taking design cues from historic models like the TN 87 and MP14, the MP20s provide more flow throughout the set from top to bottom leading to even more control over ball flight. This flow also increases forgiveness (please remember it’s still a blade) and launch in the longer irons, with an increased ability to flight the ball in the scoring clubs… all of this AND a thinner top line.

Now about that top line: it’s an extremely important part of the look of the club but, what many don’t realize is it also plays a big role in feel and acoustics too. Let’s simplify for a moment: think of a clubhead like hunk of metal—a cube—now when you hit that thick piece of metal on something it doesn’t reverberate much and when it does, it’s at a different frequency making it sound heavy and “thuddy,” or as some would say, SOLID.

Now imagine if that same piece of metal, same mass was stretched out like a saw blade. Have you ever hit something with the side of a large saw blade? It’s wobbly, loud, and generally unpleasant, that’s what happens when an unsupported part of a club gets too thin, it acts like an amplifier of bad sound, creating terrible feel. By blending a small channel (think MP5) with the classic looks of yesteryear you get a club that feels and performs like no Mizuno before it, and as I said, with a thinner look from address.

What’s all this talk of “Flow”?

Center of gravity and mass placement (or as a Mizuno Engineer explained to me “Vertical Moment of Inertia”). Since each club is designed individually, you need the center of gravity to shift throughout the set to help control launch/trajectory (or “traj” as the kids say), and make sure spin is also at an optimal level.

For the MP-20, it means long irons that are “easier” to hit (air quotes, because like I said before, it’s still a blade), and short irons that can be more easily flighted lower with greater spin and control. Just like with the MP-18s, Mizuno is keeping with the continuous reduced blade length into the short irons for a look preferred by better players and for improved grass and turf interaction.

But What About the Rest?

You might have noticed off the top I called it the “MP-20 Family.” Here’s why: In golf, like with any other industry, data is important. But it’s only as good as you use it and well…let’s just say Mizuno has been paying close attention to how golfers and fitters have been making combo sets over the last few years. It’s all about understanding what golfers really need and thanks to some proprietary data they went even deeper when it comes to designing each and every iron in this family to make sure its performance is maximized. This is why I continue to emphasize how each set has a flow, it to make sure each club in your bag is just right for you. Now to introduce you to the rest of the family members…

Mizuno MP20 MMC (Multi-Material Construction)

I know, you think you’ve heard this story before but…NOT LIKE THIS!

The new MP-20 MMC is a BIG shift in design, not just because of the Cu underlay, but a radical change in how the whole part is put together. I know it sounds very “big biz,” but in the world of manufacturing it truly comes down to how “parts” are manufactured. Now, with Mizuno, I will reiterate a well-known story. All of its forged irons are single-sourced from one foundry (Chuo) in Japan through a handshake agreement that has been in place for decades.

Now back to the MMC. Before the MP-20 the MMC always had one tiny design difficulty (not a bad one, just a truth) and that was the titanium piece in the back was the same size throughout the whole set. This lead to a set with almost constant sole width. That doesn’t mean previous generations were constructed poorly, but it just means there were improvements that could be made to how the set flowed (there’s that word again) from top to bottom…which leads us to the tech story.

For the first time in the MMC’d life, the titanium piece of the iron will actually vary in mass depending on the club. It will be broken up in the middle of the set to allow better CG placement, and like its blade cousin, improved turf interaction in the shorter irons.

What is also very cool from a build and engineering perspective is the way the titanium gets into the club in the first place. Here we go down a metallurgy rabbit hole, buckle up…

  • Titanium has a mass density (rounded) of 4.5 g/cm3 – cubed
  • Carbon steel has a mass density of (rounded) 7.9 g/cm3 – cubed

That means that from every cubed cm of steel volume you replace with titanium in the head, you save 3.4g… which might not seem like much, but in a 4-iron for example that has an average mass of 248g for (4) cm3 you save 13.6g or just over five percent. I realize this is DEEP into the mass property weeds, but when you think of what a club head weights and how every half percentage point matters, five percent is a lot! That’s more forgiveness, more MOI, more spin control, and overall better performance.

What is also very cool is all of these parts (titanium and tungsten) have ZERO chemical bond—no epoxy. They all fit snug based on the shrinkage rates of the different materials. Ti & W( tungsten – W comes from the ore Wolframite) shrinks less than the steel so as the steel cools around the titanium and tungsten pieces it creates a mechanical (solid) bond.

All of this together adds up to an iron that looks smaller than the previous version, offers more “flow” in CG, something we mentioned earlier that creates more forgiveness and control throughout the set, and at the end of the day it means a better-engineered version than the one before it.

Truth Break for a moment…

Let me make one thing clear, new sets are AWESOME! We are, and always will be, attracted to the latest and greatest but the player should still get fit and find out what works best. New will and should inevitably be better but the cost-benefit analysis should always be at the end of the day up to the individual golfer to decide and figure out what will end up in the bag to help lower scores.

The Hot Metal Mizuno MP-20 HMB

look AT THIS!!!

YES…you read that correctly. Mizuno is bringing Hot Metal tech to the MP line!

A hollow body blade looking iron using the same strong yet highly flexible Chromoloy material as the 919 Hot Metals except this time forged to create an iron like they never have before. The look and shape of a blade the speed of a Hot Metal.

Let’s break things down.

The look is clean as clean can be, from there the face of the HMB is thin and fast, while hidden inside the back of the club is complex geometry for both acoustics and precisely positioning mass. These will be the replacement for the MMC Fli-His but unlike that set, only going to the 6-iron, the new HMB will go all the way to the pitching wedge.

What is also different for the HMB vs. the MMC Fli-Hi is the way tungsten is used in the head to create different impact dynamics. The Fli-Hi had all the tungsten (20g worth) in one place in the head (low and towards the toe). The CG was still located right in the middle but through in-depth testing some players found that the Fli-Hi was a more difficult club to turn over and draw.

To improve the workability of the new HMB, the Tungsten was split into two 12g pieces (four more grams than previous Fli-Hi) and positioned into precisely formed pockets on the heel and toe in the back of the club. This allows the unsupported face to flex and makes the club more workable while still maintaining all the forgiveness you would expect from a hollow body iron built for speed. Seriously who doesn’t like the sound of that?

Since the new HMB is a full set and not just long irons, there is more to the tech story… here is comes… better flow and CG positioning throughout the set. This is hugely important for the mid and short irons where loft is already going to create spin so controlling ball flight and traj on approach shots is vital for scoring better.

This is again where the MP-20 Family discussion comes into play. Mizuno knows they are going to sell a lot more HMB long irons vs. blade and MMC long irons, so the entire family is designed holistically for every player to find each and every head that optimizes them on the course.

The Full Package

Like with previous generations going back almost a decade, Mizuno is keeping its industry-leading matrix of shaft and grip options available at NO upcharge. BUT… based on the growing demand for more exotic options the newly expanded shaft line up will include a few shafts that will come with a slight upcharge.

Whatever you end up being fit for, it’s important to realize that there has never been family of Mizuno irons designed like this, which could also mean you could be bringing home some new family members soon.

 

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Equipment

Callaway Epic Forged irons: Premium speed in a forged body

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With the release of the original Epic irons, Callaway did something they had never done before—build an iron that oozed ball speed and hid a lot of tech in a mid-sized package. Now imagine all that technology and greater speed in a more refined shape with a forged body…that is the all-new Epic Forged.

Built with the idea of offering speed and shotmaking in one package, the Epic Forged achieves all of that thanks to tech that is being used for the first time in a forged iron. The most notable being the Suspended Tungsten Core—which is comprised of the densest form of this heavy element. The issue with using this almost pure form of Tungsten is that it’s extremely hard to work with when using conventional construction methods. But Callaway defies convention and is using the patented Urethane Microspheres in the Suspended Tungsten core of the Epic Forged to precisely position mass creating the ideal center of gravity. This promotes controlled launch and spin, while allowing the face to flex as needed to create maximum ball speeds.

So what good is all this speed if you can’t control it?

Variable Face Thickness: Sure this tech isn’t new, it dates back to the above Hawkeye VFT driver (that was a great driver in its day), but if the Epic Flash driver has taught us anything, it’s that by looking beyond convention you can find new ways to utilize known technology. Built into the 360 Cup Face, the newly designed VFT pattern helps players achieve even more consistent ball speed and spin rates club to club. The reason this is so important: Callaway knows even average golfers want a club they can hit controlled shots with. A 7-iron isn’t any good if you’re not confident in the hitting the shot you want to.

Don’t think that we’re done talking about what these have under the hood just yet…

Since the Epic Forged irons go all the way into a sand wedge, there were some design decisions to be made to on how to make sure the scoring and recovery clubs still offer forgiveness but with even greater consistency and feel, Starting at the approach wedge and going to the sand wedge (the set goes PW, AW, GW, SW), instead of using the 17-4 SS cup face, Callaway engineers are using a forged faceplate to compliment the forged body. Inside of these still-hollow wedges, they are using a resistance welding technique to precisely locate a MIM (metal injection molded) Tungsten weight to achieve superior trajectory control.

The last piece to the puzzle.

A club will always be the sum of its parts and Callaway is pulling out all the stops with the Epic Star Forged set and the components that will accompany this technology package. The stock options will include Aerotech Steelfiber FC (flight control) and Mitsubishi Chemical’s  Tensei AV Silver shaft to optimize feel and control.  The other upgrade is the Golf Pride Tour Velvet Align Silver Grips (Align grips offer a textured raised rib on the bottom of the grip to help the golfer place their hands in the same position over and over again). All of these pieces come together to create a premium iron from Callaway.

The Epic Forged will be available at retail starting August 2nd. 4-SW. Retail price of $300 per iron.

 

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