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Everything you need to know about the Project X LZ iron shafts

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When golfers think of iron shafts played on the PGA Tour, two models generally come to mind. The first is the most-used shaft on the PGA Tour, True Temper’s Dynamic Gold. It’s been the leading choice of serious golfers for nearly four decades. The second is another True Temper shaft. Called Project X, it has been around a little more than a decade, and is the second-most played shaft on the PGA Tour.

It’s starting to feel as though True Temper’s new Project X LZ iron shafts could be another classic in the making, with three high-profile wins in the last four months. Adam Scott used the shafts to win the Honda Classic and WGC-Cadillac Championship, while James Hahn won with the shafts the first week he used them at the Wells Fargo Championship.

What’s different about the Project X LZ shafts, and what can they do for your game? We asked Don Brown, True Temper’s Director of Golf Innovation.

WRX: What’s the difference between the Dynamic Gold, Project X and Project X LZ iron shafts?

DB: Dynamic Gold and Project X share very similar performance profiles. Both are low- launch, low-spin shafts that weigh roughly 125 to 135 grams and both have reinforced tip sections. While their launch conditions are very similar, their EI profiles and feel are very different. Dynamic Gold has a tip section that changes in length (distance to the first step) as you move through the set. Project X, on the other hand, has a 2-inch tip section on every shaft in the set. These differences create a much different feel for these two similarly preforming shafts.

Project X LZ is a different design all together. The PX LZ has both a reinforced tip and butt section, which creates a mid-section that is more active. This allows the shaft to load more and provides exceptional feel. This three-wall design is very unique to the steel golf shaft industry. The PX LZ also has a series of very small micro steps in the midsection to enhance the loading zone even further. It will provide a mid-launch angle with a flat apex.

WRX: How long was the Project X LZ shaft in development? What challenges were there in its design?

DB: As we were seeing the great results with our early prototypes of graphite Project X LZ in late 2013, we immediately began to think if we could see the same benefits in a steel shaft. The challenge was how to create that same affect in a steel shaft. There is a lot more freedom of design with a graphite shaft, where we can easily change the different layers of graphite, as well as use different grades of graphite. In steel, you need to be able to make changes to the internal reinforcement of the shaft and are working with a singular material.

LZ_4

Our steel engineers spent over a year manipulating the steel trying to create the Loading Zone signature EI profile. When they still hadn’t perfected it, they realized they were going to have to do something unconventional. All of our tour shafts have reinforced tip sections for added stability and trajectory control, but for the LZ signature, we were going to have to reinforce the tip and butt sections. That presented a lot of manufacturing challenges that took many months to get right. Finally, with the tri-walled designed dialed in, we added the series of micro steps to increase the flexibility in the loading zone even more. It took almost 2 years to get the designs dialed in, and a few more months of player testing, but with the rapid tour uptake and 3 PGA wins in a few months, it was definitely worth it.

WRX: What has been the feedback from tour players?

DB: Obviously, we have had great success on Tour already with several major champions putting the shafts in play, and over a dozen different players having added it to their bags.

A lot of the players who are adding it are looking to work and flight the ball a little more than they can with the traditional low-launch, low-spin products that dominate the Tour. I think we are seeing players being more receptive to new technologies like LZ and (True Temper’s Dynamic Gold) AMT, as opposed to sticking with traditional designs and weights.

WRX: How do PGA Tour players test new iron shafts? Are they more concerned with what their launch monitor says, what their ball flight does, or what they’re feeling during their swing?

DB: For irons we use the launch monitor, but the data doesn’t figure into decisions as much as it does with drivers. With a driver, the numbers are usually king, and a good range session with a driver shaft can be enough to switch. With irons, it’s more about feel and ball flight. Players aren’t worried as much about distance; they want to see a trajectory and ball flight that they like, and have a feel that gives them confidence.

If a player is satisfied with his current irons, it will usually take a couple rounds of testing before he will consider switching. A player who is searching might switch in the same week, but not without some on-course testing first. 

WRX: Some tour players use the same shafts in their irons as they do in their wedges. Others use the same model, but one flex less in their wedges. A smaller group of tour players use completely different shafts, or those specifically design for wedges. Is the Project X LZ a good wedge shaft?

DB: With wedges, usually we see the pitching wedge is the same shaft as the set, and the other wedges can be independent. With our LZ players, we have some who have gone to LZ through the set, some who stuck with their existing wedges shafts and one player who is still testing LZ in his irons, but has put LZ into his gap and lob wedges.

LZ_2

LZ certainly can work well as a wedge shaft, but for many players wedges are about confidence and feel, so we don’t see players switch their gap, sand and lob wedges shafts very often.

WRX: Anything else we need to know, Don?

DB: I encourage all GolfWRX readers to give the LZ shafts a try at a demo day or club fitter. The technology in these shafts is really unique, and provides a different performance and feel than anything else out there on the market. PX LZ are available now from our PFC dealers, and many of the OEMs have already added them to custom or will be adding them very soon.

WRX: Thanks Don. 

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. Jericho

    Jan 22, 2017 at 3:05 pm

    I’ve been swinging the 2006 satin finish 6.0 Project x matched with the satin finish 2006 TP MB’s ..my game is a little funny right now but still around 69-72ish ..how would th PX lz compare to my 2006 PX ?

  2. Tom Duckworth

    May 22, 2016 at 12:15 pm

    Some specs. would have been nice to include. So many factors go into picking the right iron shaft for your swing.
    I have good swing speed but don’t load real aggressively so I start with that idea in mind when I look at any shaft . They are for the most part all good shafts just find the one that fits the best is what counts. I don’t really care what the guys on tour play because I don’t swing like them anyway.

  3. Faxon

    May 21, 2016 at 6:20 am

    Why are you posting this information now, when this shaft is over 2 years old?

  4. Dave

    May 20, 2016 at 5:09 pm

    125to135 gram shafts ,you would have to have a pretty fast swing speed to hit these all day ,and be fairly muscle bound also . I know personally I would be tired after 12holes trying to swing these.

    • Joshuaplaysgolf

      May 20, 2016 at 5:53 pm

      If you’ve ever swung a DG S300, one of the most popular/common shafts, you’ve swung a 130g shaft. It’s a pretty standard weight for steel shafts…with, of course, numerous lighter options available. You seem to think this is only for tour-level and/or burley players and its Titleist’s stock iron shaft. Lol. Even the R300 is 127g. Most people can load a shaft of that weight, it’s a matter of finding the right weight to lock in tempo and your personal preference of swing weight.

  5. Brad

    May 20, 2016 at 1:38 pm

    Personally, I like the idea, but my favorite shafts are KBS Tour C-Taper. I really want to try out Dynamic Gold AMT, but these look fantastic!

  6. erlybrd

    May 19, 2016 at 10:41 pm

    Well it sounds like Modus 120. I guess LZs are pretty nice as well. I’d rather have shafts made in Japan though – Nippon.

    • Dave C

      May 23, 2016 at 10:09 pm

      It sounds more like the profile of the Modus3 125 version.

  7. LabraeGolfer

    May 19, 2016 at 2:02 pm

    I think these seem like they are made to compete with the KBS Tours… sounds like a similar profile maybe the Modus3 as previously mentioned as well….

  8. Joshuaplaysgolf

    May 19, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    I would be really interested to see a testing against these and what, in my mind, sounds like a similar shaft weight/flex point like the Nippon modus3 125’s. Personally, these went in my irons this year and the trajectory and dispersion is phenomenal…but being a wrxer, naturally when I see something new and shiny I want to play with it.

  9. Milo

    May 19, 2016 at 10:46 am

    I wonder how these would compare to my PXi shafts.

    • Lp

      May 20, 2016 at 2:13 am

      Not even the same. PXi is softer tipped. PX is stiff tipped.

  10. golfraven

    May 19, 2016 at 9:22 am

    When I think of iron shafts played on tour I also thing of KBS and Nippon as well. So just mentioning True Temper is bit far fetched. I understand it is in the context of the article but bit misleading – stop favouring specific brands. I play the PX and would be interested to try the LZ but certainly will also have KBS on my mind.

    • name goes here

      May 19, 2016 at 11:41 am

      Considering the article is an interview advertorial piece, why mention the competition? Everyone reading already knows.

    • Lp

      May 20, 2016 at 2:12 am

      golfraven,
      what in the heck on Earth are you blethering about? True Temper owns PX. So why wouldn’t any writer mention PX with True Temper? It’s the same company.

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Equipment

Wunder: I’ve hit THESE new drivers this year…and this is what I think

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During this lockdown, I have done quite a few “Friday Q & A’s” on my IG, and one of the questions I get asked constantly is “have you hit this?” That, and “whaddya think?”

So, in the spirit of organizing my brain, it seemed like the right time to share what new drivers I have actually hit this year…and this is what I think.

Now, it needs to be said that there is a lot of new gear out there, but, to be honest, I’ve only actually hit a select few enough to actually build an opinion. “Enough” in this case is at least 20 balls. Some of these sticks I tested during our pre-launch preview with the OEMs, at the PGA show, a friend has one, or I actually have it in the bag.

Here we go.

TaylorMade SIM

Setup tested: SIM 9 @8.25 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Kuro Kage XTS 70TX

LOOKS: The best way to describe how SIM looks behind the ball is “comfortable.” TaylorMade has always made drivers that just look correct. The lines are clean, the shape inspires playability, and I dig the paint job. They hit a home run with this one for sure.

FEEL: Best sound out there in my opinion. Heavy, dense, and if you get one dead-nuts center, it lets you know. The feel at contact is just as TaylorMade drivers have always done, center strikes feel like Thor’s hammer and mishits don’t kill your good vibes.

VS THE M5: I get asked this a lot. I loved the M5. Still do. To be honest the two drivers data wise were legit apples to apples. The only difference is my stock shot with M5 was a low spin straight ball and with SIM its a slight draw with a touch more spin and slightly lower launch. I prefer that.

OVERALL: In my opinion, the TaylorMade SIM is the cool kid in high school for 2020. Last year it was F9 followed closely by M5. TM knocked it outta the park on this one.

TaylorMade SIM Max

Setup tested: Sim Max 9 @8.25 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Kuro Kage XTS 70TX

LOOKS: It has a bit more of a longer face at address, which makes the head appear shallow which inspires a bit more confidence to turn it over. That’s the main thing I noticed with MAX. Other than that its a tried and true TM shape.

FEEL: Like its sibling, it has a nice solid hit audibly at the impact. So, overall its apples to apples with SIM. However, due to the front weight missing on the MAX, the actual strike doesn’t feel AS meaty as SIM. Not a negative necessarily just something I noticed.

VS M6: Both of these sticks I launched a bit too high versus the weighted versions. That’s why they never got any serious consideration to actually put in play.

OVERALL: As a high launch, more forgiving option, it’s an ace.

Callaway Mavrik Sub Zero

Setup tested: Sub Zero 9 w/ Mitsubishi Chemical Tensei Blue AV 65TX

LOOKS: To my eyes, the newer versions of the Callaway drivers have looked a bit more compact than its competition. To me, this always looked “low spin” for whatever reason. The Mavrik has the same shape which is good.

FEEL: They really fixed the sound. The Epic Flash sounded like a pop can to me, and the Mavrik Sub Zero sounds like a sledgehammer. The good thing here is the sound now matches up with what the hit feels like. I think the Mavrik is the best feeling driver Callaway has made since Epic.

VS EPIC FLASH SZ: To me, a complete improvement on all fronts. Sound, feel, and performance for me were all substantially better. Now I must say that the Epic Flash Sub Zero was a great driver, I always got great numbers out of it, but the sound took me out of it. I’m sure there isn’t that much difference audibly between the two, but in this game, even something minor can represent so much. Sound to me is huge.

OVERALL: In all honestly, I haven’t given a Callaway driver a real hard look to actually put in the bag since Epic. The sound got louder wit Rogue and Epic Flash. The Mavrik SZ  however is a fantastic driver and will def get some more testing out of me.

Cobra SpeedZone

Setup tested: Cobra Speed Zone 9 @8.5 w/ Fujikura Ventus Black 7X

LOOKS: The F9 was a winner on all fronts. The only critique I had was optically it looked like the driver was a little too fade biased. The SZ with its milled in top line gives it softer look at address and for me, softer lines mean more workability, just what my eyes tell me.

FEEL: As with F9 and the earlier mentioned SIM, the Speed Zone sounds EXACTLY how a driver should sound. It has a very heavy hit audibly and that’s across the face. I love the sound of this driver.

VS F9: Apples to apples, it’s the same. Beyond the optics, it feels, sounds, and performs like the F9. Not a bad thing though, the F9 was the driver of 2019 in my opinion.

OVERALL: Nothing wrong with repeating an already awesome driver. SpeedZone will stand up to anything out there. If I’m being fair, I think F9 elevated things in 2019, and this year the competition caught up to it. Changes nothing about how good this driver is.

Cobra Speed Zone Xtreme

Setup tested: Cobra Speed Zone Xtreme 9 @8.5 w/ Fujikura Ventus Black 7X

LOOKS: Like the other drivers in this higher MOI category, it looks a little longer heel to toe.

FEEL: No different than the SpeedZone, sounds great, the impact is solid across the face, and even thin shots feel solid.

OVERALL: The Xtreme is the sleeper hit of 2020 and I’ve heard the fitters love this thing. It’s by far the easiest to hit and overall good time of any driver on this list. Is it longer? No. But is it Xtremely (no pun) playable and competitive? Hard yes. It’s a blast.

PXG Proto

Setup tested: PXG Proto 9 w/ Graphite Design Tour AD IZ 6 TX

LOOKS: Slick. Like all PXG gear, the look is there. The matte crown and elegant lines make it very pleasing optically. I also appreciate that although it’s designed to look high tech. The lines inspire playability, and who doesn’t love a driver that looks like a stealth bomber?

FEEL: I only hit about 20 balls with the PXG Proto in the short time I had with it, but, wow, did this thing surprise me. The sound oddly enough is a bit higher-pitched than the others on the list but for whatever reason, it’s not a distraction. It actually adds to the experience of the hit. I typically detest that, but this sound matched up with the solid hit I was getting. I’m not sure if this is the final version since its a limited tour proto but what is happening is definitely interesting.

VS GEN2: It’s just better. Feels better, sounds great, more playable across the face. The Gen2 did one thing better than everyone else, it destroyed spin. The problem I had was control. The PXG Proto is still low spin but with the new 4 weight system (no intel on the tech yet) seems to add quality launch to the low spin profile and puts the player in a situation where very few to any sacrifices are made.

OVERALL: I was a fan of Gen2. No doubt. But it never flat out beat M5, F9, or SIM. The Proto has elevated PXG’s driver game. I don’t think its a matter of whether or not the driver stands up with the irons, I believe PXG is on the right track to having a driver that eliminates any “yeah, but…” to the conversation. That’s a huge leap since Gen1. These guys are trending hard.

I hope this was helpful.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the final version of Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts

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In our forums, our members have been discussing the final version of Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts. The look of the ultra-stiff shafts, which originated from Bryson wanting a “graphite shaft that was stiffer than the Dynamic Gold X7″, has impressed our members who have been praising the final version and sharing their thoughts on the concept.

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.

  • QuigleyDU: “Awesome.”
  • My2dogs: “Really coming out with some great new stuff.”
  • HateTheHighDraw: “MMT 125TX are absolute fire, but these must be much stiffer.”
  • Robkingasu: “Sweet!”

Entire Thread: “Bryson DeChambeau’s LA Golf ‘Texas Rebar’ wedge shafts”

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Should I move to heavier iron shafts? – GolfWRXers have their say

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In our forums, our members have been discussing the strategy of moving to heavier shafts in irons. WRXer ‘Z1ggy16’ has been making swing changes lately, and the transition has been most challenging for his iron play. ‘Ziggy16’ says:

“Been making some swing changes lately, most notably working to really shallow my club into the downswing. I’m finding that I’m doing this well with my heavy wedge shafts and driver, but I’m struggling a bit in my irons. My strike pattern with my wedges is pretty good, but the irons are a bit all over. Driver is 80g raw, wedges are 132g raw, irons 120g raw. I don’t think I want to go any stiffer, but is there a chance I’ve “outgrown” this weight and need to move to something a bit heavier to help keep these feels going through my set? No idea what swing speed is at this point, but my 7i is normally a smooth/comfortable 175-180 for me.

I really like the feel of my Accra Tour Z Xtreme 475 and my S400’s in the GW-LW. I’m kind of leaning maybe soft stepping modus 120TX or X100’s.. Heck maybe even S200 straight in? Normally I’d just get a fitting, but with Rona still going around, I’m not than keen on it. 2020 is the year of the self fit for me. FWIW, I used modus 120TX 2xSS in my GW & SW last year and that was pretty good feeling. Perhaps a touch too soft… they seemed to really whip/bend hard when hitting from the rough on full swings.”

Our members discuss whether they feel a switch to heavier shafts in the irons will have the desired impact.

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.

  • Pepperturbo: “You’re not alone. Regardless of age, some of us swing better with heavier shafts. I went from 70g driver and 85g 3wd graphite shafts to 58g Ventus shaft in driver and 70g Ventus shaft in 4wd. In irons went from 130g X to 120g 6.0 PX steel shafts which lasted about fifteen years. Then last year made another downward weight change to Steelfiber (steel & graphite) 110g Stiff shafts, lightest I have ever played. Keep in mind as you transition, changing shaft weight is not the only answer. Increasing swing weight can make up for shaft weight. Though I really like them in 6-3i, not thrilled in SW-7i, so just ordered heavier Steelfiber i125g shafts for my PW-7i blades.”
  • Jeff58: “As someone who has gone through and continues to work on what sounds like a similar situation, your ideal iron shafts will likely change. Where they change to isn’t possible to predict with any degree of accuracy. Don’t change your current irons without knowing. It’s frustrating, expensive, and you won’t have any clubs while they’re being changed out. Instead, get a single club from dealsandsteals or similar and experiment with that. Also, the only relevant experience is outdoors under your actual turf conditions. Indoor and mat use can be grossly different.”
  • Red4282: “Just depends on your tempo and load and preferences tbh. My numbers are about identical to yours; I play 77g in the driver and 125 in the irons. I don’t think I could go lighter than 125.”
  • gvogel: “I have a set of hickory clubs. Of course, hickory shafts are darn heavy, maybe 150 grams or so. I probably hit straighter shots with the irons, and particularly hit better shots with the niblick (wedge). Driver and fairway woods, not so much. That might be a stupid insertion into an intelligent thread, but heavier goes straighter, lighter goes longer. You can go heavier, and it helps in transition, but don’t go too stiff.”

Entire Thread: “Should I switch to heavier iron shafts?”

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