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Cobra launches F-Max line, introduces One Length to SGI category

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With its new F-Max golf clubs, Cobra continues its commitment to slower-speed golfers who need golf clubs that make the game easier. According to the company, the best way to accomplish this is to make the golf clubs weigh less, and to pack them with technologies that help launch the ball higher, straighter and with more speed.

In attempts to further simplify the game for beginning and senior golfers, Cobra is bringing the company’s popular one-length-iron concept — all of the irons in the set measure the same length and have the same lie angle as a 7 iron — to the super game-improvement category with its F-Max One Length irons.

Throughout the F-Max line, Cobra has also made material changes and technological improvements to make the clubs more forgiving and longer than Cobra’s previous Max line. The F-Max line, which includes drivers, fairway woods, hybrids, irons and wedges, will hit stores on August 18th.

Read on for pricing and specs. We break down everything you need to know about the individual offerings below.

F-Max Driver

In order to create a lighter driver — “lighter means easier to hit,” according to Tom Olsavsky, VP of R&D for Cobra — the F-Max drivers are built with Cobra Superlite 50-gram shafts and have reduced swing weights compared to their Max predecessors.

The F-Max drivers also have a forged Ti-6-4 titanium face insert that’s said to create more distance on mishits. For more forgiveness and a higher launch, center of gravity has been shifted more toward the rear and heel of the club, which should help slicers turn the ball over a bit easier. Other changes include a new alignment feature on the crown, a new black PVD finish, and two different hosel options for golfers; an “offset” neck for those who need additional draw bias, and a straight neck for a relatively straighter flight.

“When it comes to the super game-improvement category, it can’t be overstated how important lightweight construction is to this category of player,” Olsavsky said in a press release. “With the creation of F-Max, we have focused on the concept that lighter means easier to hit and we have gone to great lengths to ensure that even our components deliver superiority when it comes to reduced weight.”

The F-Max Drivers are available in 9.5, 10.5 and 11.5degree lofts and will sell for $299. They come stock with Lamkin Rel 360 midsize grips, which Cobra says will improve comfort and consistency (due to the larger grip size).

F-Max Fairway Woods

Cobra continues its focus on a lightweight construction with the F-Max fairway woods to help golfers hit the ball higher and straighter. With many of the same technologies as the driver — most namely back/heel CG weighting, the crown alignment feature and an offset hosel — the biggest differences include a forged 455 stainless face insert versus a titanium insert in the driver, and a Cobra Superlite 60 shaft, which is 10 grams heavier than the driver shaft.

The F-Max fairway woods will be available in 16-, 20- and 23-degree lofts and will sell for $199. Like the drivers, the woods will also come stock with Lamkin Rel 360 midsize grips.

F-Max Hybrids

Cobra’s F-Max hybrids, which also come with its Superlite 60-gram shaft, are designed to blend with the F-Max drivers and fairway woods due to the similarity in construction, according to Cobra. They will be available in 19-, 22-, 25- and 28-degree lofts and will sell for $179 each.

F-Max Irons

Lighter heads, lighter shafts, lighter swing weights. With its F-Max irons — which Cobra calls the lightest irons in company history — Cobra is sticking with the notion that lighter means easier to hit for golfers with slower swing speeds.

In addition to lighter constructions, the F-Max irons also have deeper undercut designs behind the faces for more flex at impact and greater ball speeds across the face, as well as lower-profile heads to help raise launch. The sets also have a progressive design, meaning the long irons (4-7 iron) are made with 17-4 stainless steel for more distance. The shorter irons (8-PW, GW, SW) are made with 431 stainless steel for more feel.

Like the drivers and woods, the irons also have back/heel weighting to encourage a higher launch and more forgiveness, and they’re built with hosel offset to help golfers reduce a slice.

The F-Max irons, which have nickel chrome plating, will be available for $599 (5-PW, GW) with a True Temper Superlite shaft, and $699 (4H, 5H and 6-PW) with a Cobra Superlite 60 graphite shaft.

F-Max One-Length Irons

Cobra first brought one-length irons to retail after signing Bryson DeChambeau, the face of the one-length movement, to its staff. Cobra currently offers one-length irons in a Tour version that DeChambeau uses, a cavity-back version, a junior version, and now, a super game-improvement version with the new F-Max set. Cobra’s argument is that learning just one swing throughout your iron/wedge set can help simplify the game for golfers.

“We are excited to be the first to bring one-length iron technology to the super game-improvement segment of the market,” Olsavsky says. “Allowing senior and women players the simplicity of having one swing and one set-up for their irons helps make golf a little easier and more fun. And for those players who aren’t quite ready to take the one-length iron plunge, we are confident our new F-Max variable length irons will provide an unmatched level of consistency and accuracy.”

Cobra’s F-Max One-Length irons have the same head constructions and pricing as the F-Max variable-length set, which sell for $599 in steel and $699 in graphite.

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10 Comments

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  1. acemandrake

    Aug 2, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    This actually makes sense:

    “• Most rec golfers should only carry a 15-16º loft “thriver” and then something like a 7-wood, a hybrid and then start their iron single length set at the 6-7 iron into the wedges. For the mass of golfers who cannot break 90 a partial set is adequate to play and manage their inconsistent recreational game.”

  2. Rich Douglas

    Aug 1, 2017 at 11:38 pm

    From the article: “Cobra’s F-Max One-Length irons have the same head constructions and pricing as the F-Max variable-length set….”

    How can this be? How could they have the same head constructions in both the VL and SL sets? In order to have a single-length set that works, each head has to weigh the same, have the same lie angle, have the same off-set, have the same MOI, etc. In VL sets, it’s just the opposite, with clubheads changing weight to adjust to each shaft length (in order to maintain swingweight consistency throughout the set).

    Either Cobra’s gone back to the Tommy Armour EQL–not likely–or the article is wrong. “Shank” you very much.

    • Mike

      Aug 17, 2017 at 12:25 pm

      No, I think you just misinterpreted what they meany by “same head constructions”. It just means the same material composition and weight distribution. They can have different total weights and lofts/lies.

  3. Doh doh doh

    Aug 1, 2017 at 8:31 pm

    I’ve been waiting for these! Mega off-set drivers and irons to really gouge it from the back foot! yeah!

  4. Anthony

    Aug 1, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    Must not have noticed the “One Length” part? Shank???

  5. BusterG

    Aug 1, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Those pretty looking Cobra F-Max irons and driver will find their way into my bag. they are outright wicked and will scare the bejesus outta my playing buddies — lololol

  6. SilkyMitts

    Aug 1, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Those irons with chrome plating and metalwoods with black PVD are straight fire.

  7. acemandrake

    Aug 1, 2017 at 8:01 am

    Could be possible that single length clubs are ideal for casual/recreational golfers?

    Cobra should offer a higher lofted driver than their 11.5.

    • Rich Douglas

      Aug 1, 2017 at 11:54 pm

      “Could be possible that single length clubs are ideal for casual/recreational golfers?”

      No, not really. Swingspeed–which correlates strongly to performance–is the key here.

      In variable length sets, slower swingers have trouble maintaining distances in the long irons. This is a key reason we saw a transition from 1-3 irons towards hybrids. Hybrids are easier for slower swingers to get aloft and see decent distances. They have longer shafts, are lighter, and have bigger sweet spots. But….

      This problem oozes over to the single-length arena, only more so. Because each iron is built around a 7- or 8-iron length, the player cannot rely on a longer shaft to produce sufficient swing speed. These irons do account for this by (a) having a higher COR than traditional irons and (b) counting on the player hitting closer to the sweet spot more often (because of the shorter shaft and developed consistency because of the single-length approach).

      So here’s the dilemma: slower swingers can’t (much) benefit from SL irons. And better (faster) players tend not to want to switch from what works for them. I happen to be someone who falls between these concepts.

      I’m a fast swinger (driver at approximately 110mph), but I needed more consistency from my irons. Once I became a better sand player and putter, it remained the thing blocking my improvement. SL irons have done that for me. I’ve been playing them for 7 months (Wishon Sterling) and will never go back. I have a nice set of barely use 2016 Pings in the garage that I haven’t touched since I got the Sterlings back in January.

      I hope OEMs can find a good niche; I’d like to think SL irons have a future. But at age 58, I’m willing to ride these Sterlings out–possibly re-shafting them with graphite when it becomes time. Instead, I hope manufacturers find a way to make this work and continue to improve on the designs (likely in SL clubs with varying shafts). Until then, I’ll enjoy the sheer consistency the Sterlings have brought to my iron game. Awesome.

    • Steve S

      Aug 2, 2017 at 8:52 am

      As one of the “older” golfers I have seen the same thing from my friends. I play an adj. Rocketbalz set at 8.5 and hit the ball higher then all of them. I made the adjustment of teeing the ball VERY high(4 inch tees) and playing it off my front toe. This allows me to hit with an “upward” impact with launches the ball high with just enough spin to maximize carry. I’m slowly convincing my friends to do the same. They all tend to hit down or level and it kills their distance with a driver. In some ways my set up looks “goofy” (according to one friend) but I hit my drives 20-40 yards long than any of my buddies….and I’m older than most of them.

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Whats in the Bag

Byeong Hun An WITB 2020

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  • Equipment accurate as of the Farmers Insurance Open

Driver: Titleist TS3 (8.5 degrees, B2 SureFit setting)
Shaft: Accra TZ5 M5 Proto 65 X

3-wood: Titleist TS2 (13.5 degrees @14.25, D4 SureFit setting)
Shaft: Accra TZ6 M5 Proto 65 X

Utility iron: Titleist U500 (2)
Shaft: Project X EvenFlow Black

Irons: Titleist 716 T-MB (3-5), Titleist 620 MB (6-9)
Shafts: Project X PXi 7.0 (3-5), Project X 6.5 (6-9)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (48-10F, 52-08F, 56-08M), Vokey Design WedgeWorks (60-T)
Shafts: Project X 6.5 (48, 52, 56), True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 (60)

Putter: Scotty Cameron GSS Prototype
Shaft: LAGP Ozik 135P
Grip: Scotty Cameron Pistolini

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

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Bettinardi and Big League Chew launch special headcovers, ball marker, and limited-edition DASS BB8-Wide putter

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Bettinardi x Big League Chew

Bettinardi and Big League Chew have teamed up to launch a full product line of special headcovers, club sets, a ball marker, a tee-shirt, and a limited 1/5 custom Big League Chew putter.

The special 1/5 DASS BB8-Wide Big League Chew putter weighs 355 grams, features a purple flame finish and contains Fancy Face milling. The custom flat-stick from Bettinardi and Big League Chew can be purchased in The Hive for $2,200.

Putter Specs: 

  • Model: BB8 Wide
  • Weight:  355 grams
  • Material:  DASS
  • Finish: Purple Flame
  • Face milling: Fancy Face

Bettinardi X Big League Chew

The co-branded headcovers and golf products celebrate the passion for the game of golf as well as paying tribute to the only gum to ever be featured at the National Baseball Hall of Fame Museum.

Bettinardi X Big League Chew

Check out the full product line below:

  • Big League Chew x Betti Headcover – $100.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Mallet Headcover – $100.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Club Cover Set – $300.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Players Towel – $55.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Ball Marker – $55.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Pocket Tee – $35.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Hat – $35.00
  • Big League Chew x Betti Yeti – $75.00

Bettinardi X Big League Chew

The Bettinardi X Big League Chew collaboration items will be available to purchase in The Hive at Bettinardi.com from 10 CDT on Thursday April 2 2020.

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Phase 1 vs. P7TW: An inside look at Tiger Woods’ TaylorMade irons

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At this point, the story of the development of Tiger Woods’ TaylorMade irons has been told and told again. There have been numerous articles, YouTube videos, and even a TV documentary on how they were made—and even a Tour Championship and a Sunday Masters telecast to validate both models.

But I wanted to know the differences and similarities of the two TaylorMade iron models Woods has played since signing with the company in January of 2017: the Phase 1, and the final masterpiece the, P7TW.

Fortunately, in this job, you become friends with a good number of R&D people, so I went to my buddies and TaylorMade Lead Engineers Paul Demkowski and Matt Bovee to fill in some blanks.

This is what they had to say.

Matt Bovee Sr. Manager Product Creation

JW: The Phase 1 iron was based on what previous iron of TW? What inspired it?

MB: The PH1 iron was based off of the set he was playing just prior, the TGR set. Inspiration for the P7TW is really founded in all the years of TW’s career. From the numerous victories, countless hours grinding, and all his majors… the P7TW is really a culmination of what he specifically wants in an iron design after years and years of being the best ball striker in the game.

JW: What was the testing process like going from his TGR into the Phase 1?

MB: The PH1 set was a collaboration between TaylorMade and Mike Taylor with a new cosmetic design we created. We didn’t want to change any significant performance attributes because the immediate goal was to get TW into a TM iron. We partnered with Mike Taylor to help with the creation of PH1 as well as the learning process required for the development of P7TW. For us, it was a learning experience as TW went through his testing protocol for a new set. Making sure everything was dialed in and felt right.

JW: What are the similarities of the two irons, PH1 and P7TW?

MB: There are a lot of similarities between the PH1 and P7TW from a performance perspective. It’s been said before, and I’ll say it again, TW is very, very specific in what he wants. Launch, spin, carry, look, feel…he has every attribute for each iron defined in his head. Nothing more, nothing less. They use the same lofts, lie, scorelines, essentially the same CG, etc.

JW: What kept PH1 from being the “Tiger Iron”?

MB: The PH1 irons were built from an existing forging profile. By using an existing forging he was familiar with it allowed us to minimize variables as we learned and dissected what works best for him. Even after the PH1 iron performance matched what he was looking for, TW requested the MG sole technology for his irons so he could replace them more frequently with much less testing from set to set. We needed to take this into account with a new TM forging design.

*The milled grind sole was designed specifically for this benefit. It has allowed TM to duplicate the sole of irons and wedges which in turn eliminates a number of steps during testing and/or mid season replacement.

JW: The name Phase 1 suggests a new version was to come, was that always a bridge iron into the current?

MB: Yes, we knew designing a TaylorMade iron for him from the ground up would take some time and we needed a “bridge” of sorts while the new design was in development.

JW: When TW began testing irons in the beginning, (knowing the challenge which is well documented) what was the original process like? Who was involved?

Tiger Woods matching things up at The Kingdom in Carlsbad

MB:

  • Participants: Tiger, Tomo Bystedt, Brian Bazzel, Keith Sbarbaro, Paul Demkowski, Mike Taylor, and Matt Bovee.
  • The development process was a longer road than we anticipated. Much back and forth between TM and Mike Taylor to start. We needed to unpack years of learning as to what works best for the Big Cat and what he likes. From that point, it was a lot of back and forth testing of individual sticks. Starting with the 6i and not moving on from that until we got it perfect. It actually took 7 different CNCs prototypes before we nailed the 6i. From there we added in the 3i and the 9i to serves as bookends for design. After these three SKUs got TW’s blessing we filled out the rest of the set.

JW: How many PH1 sets were made?

MB: As far as we know just the 1 set. Mike Taylor would be the only person who would know differently

JW: What are the differences between P1 and P7TW?

MB: The largest differences are:

  • Built from different forgings
  • Addition of MG sole—when Tiger needs replacements due to wear, the Milled Grind soles are exactly the geometry that he needs and so any opportunity for slight variations has been removed. That’s why the P7TW is ultimately Tiger’s gamer irons.
  • Milled channel along the back bar of the iron. Cosmetic was designed to fit with the PSeries.
  • Cosmetic design is different, the back bar geometry is slightly different the milled channel was used in 730 to reposition mass, TWs is a much smaller version of that

JW: Does TW only have input (R&D) on his irons or all the TM irons (forgings of course)

MB: TW’s R&D input on irons has been limited to his P7TWs up to this point…which was extensive. All the way down to a modified font for the sole number making it easier from him to read and therefore more confident he had the right stick. He has provided some input in other categories however, wedges most specifically.

JW: In your opinion is the P7TW the best muscleback TM has ever developed?

MB: “Best” is such a relative term that lies in the eyes of the beholder… It is certainly the most prestigious with the most design iterations and R&D development.

JW: If you could project into the future, what improvements if any could be made to a TW iron?

MB: Because that iron is specific to him and what he wants, there really isn’t any way we could make it better unless his swing or style of play changes. The P7TW is dialed in for TW’s game as it exists today.

Tiger Woods and Keith Sbarboro at The Kingdom

Paul Demkowski, Sr. Product Engineer was the person that worked the closest with Mike Taylor in the development of both models and this is what he had to say

JW: Are you still in close contact with Mike Taylor at Artisan? and if so is it more just to verify info or is it also for future R&D?

PD:  Yes, I’m still in close contact with Mike T. He continues to build the irons for TW. He verifies all the specs as they are built and records the data.

JW: In regards to the  CG placements between P1 and P7TW what is the difference?

PD: CG locations are very close. Couldn’t deviate too much as he would feel the difference and would see it in his ball flight.

JW: Random question but had to ask, did you ever attempt to make TW a specific driving iron?

PD: No, never made a specific TW driving iron. Only thing I did once make a slower P790 UDI for him. He said the standard one went too far. LOL.

It’s also noteworthy that TW’s specs don’t change much but as you can see current set up, the only real shift in his irons is lie angle which will go up one depending on his swing at the time.

Tiger Woods’ Current Iron Specs

All with True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100. Irons tipped 1/4 inch, w/wooden dowels and SST Pure (Scott Garrison on Tour) at exactly 130 grams.

All lengths without grips. (Loft. Lie. Length. Swing Weight)

  • 3-iron: 22.5, 59.5, 38 13/16, D4
  • 4-iron: 25.5, 60, 38 5/16, D4
  • 5-iron: 29, 60.5, 37 13/16, D4
  • 6-iron: 32.5, 61, 37 5/16, D4
  • 7-iron: 36, 61.5, 36 7/8, D4
  • 8-iron: 40.5, 62, 36 5/16, D4
  • 9-iron: 45, 62.5, 35 11/16, D4
  • PW: 49, 63, 35 11/16, D4

Another cool aspect of Tiger’s irons (rarely spoken of) are his shafts. The shafts are True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 with no labels, and they are sorted to exact weights (130 grams) and sent to Scott Garrison (@ScottEGgolf) to SST Pure, then over to David “DR” Richey at Artisan Golf to be built. Lots of cooks in the kitchen, but it’s Tiger, so no doubt totally worth it for all involved!

TaylorMade’s Keith Sbarbaro and Paul Demkowski look on at The Kingdom

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