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Mizuno brings the MP family closer together with its new MP-18 irons

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With its MP-18 iron family, Mizuno has narrowed the differences between its four new iron models to make mixing sets not only easier, but completely seamless.

Check out our WITB Page, and you’ll notice that most PGA Tour players are using combination iron sets. That means they’re playing muscleback short irons and cavity-back longer irons with thicker toplines and more forgiveness. This combo-set trend makes perfect sense; it allows golfers to use an iron set that gives them maximum control in their short irons where they want maximum control, and more forgiveness and distance in their long irons where they want more distance and forgiveness. Duh!

The problem is that most iron sets attempt to cater to the needs of muscleback players with their muscleback irons, cavity-back players with their cavity-back irons, and game-improvement players with their game-improvement irons. By segmenting iron families, it leaves gaps in looks, feel, playability, and distance for golfers who want to make their own combination set.

Mizuno has gone to great lengths to address that problem with its MP-18 iron family, which is intended to be mixed and matched. The MP-18 family includes four irons types:

  • MP-18 (Muscleback)
  • MP-18 SC (Split Cavity)
  • MP-18 MMC (Multi-Material Compound)
  • MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi

While the SC, MMC, and MMC Fli-Hi irons are larger than the MP-18 muscleback irons, they maintain the same sole, head profile, and topline ratios in their shaping. That means they look almost identical at address; they’re just slightly larger. Their lofts and pricing are also essentially identical. Only a trained eye will be able to tell any difference at all.

In terms of materials, Mizuno went back to its roots with the MP-18. The irons are forged from 1025E Pure Select Mild Carbon, a switch from the 1025 Boron the company was using in some of its MP irons in recent years. Boron was used because it is stronger than Mizuno’s 1025E carbon steel, allowing engineers to thin out structures within the irons for added distance and forgiveness. “That’s just not MP,” as one Mizuno representative put it.

With this launch, Mizuno strived to give the MP-18 irons the look and feel of irons that “could have been made 100 years ago,” the company says. They’re for players who want the best-feeling, best-looking irons they can play, with simple color schemes and classic shapes, while still getting maximum performance. There’s still a place for cutting-edge designs and materials in Mizuno players irons — just ask Brooks Koepka, who used the JPX-900 Tour irons forged from Boron to win the 2017 U.S. Open — but it’s not in the MP-18 line.

To get the artistic shaping the company desired in the MP-18 line, Mizuno brought its computer-designed club heads to Japan where its expert craftsmen refined the shapes. The club-grinding experts worked to blend the transition of the hosels into the club faces in a way that reduced the look of offset. They also dialed in toe and heel shapes while adding camber to the sole. These prototype models were used as the starting point for each of the MP-18 irons to ensure consistency through the lineup.

Despite their throwback looks, the company relied on new school technologies to refine the sound and feel of the irons. Mizuno’s stated goal with the irons was to extend impact frequencies so they not only feel softer, but so that golfers get more feedback on the club. To that end, the irons were forged with a new “Grain-Flow Forged HD” process. The company’s H.I.T. (Harmonic Impact Technology) was also used to dial in acoustics for enhanced feedback.

Below, we break down each of the individual offerings in the MP-18 family. The irons will sell for $149.99 each and will be available September 15.

Mizuno MP-18

In relation to previous Mizuno MP muscleback irons, the MP-18 irons are significantly smaller than the MP-5 irons and slightly smaller than one of Mizuno’s smallest modern muscleback irons, the MP-4. Their toplines appear thinner than they measure due to a camber that makes them look slimmer in the address position. In comparing topline thicknesses, the MP-18’s are thinner than the MP-5, but they’re a bit thicker than the MP-4.

The MP-18 scoring irons (9 and PW) are smaller in size than previous models. All of the irons in the set also have lower heel heights. “That’s what this player wants,” a Mizuno representative said.

The MP-18 irons will come stock with True Temper Dynamic Gold S300 shafts and Golf Pride MCC White/Black grips. They are right-handed only offerings.

Full Specs 

MP-18bladeSpecs

Mizuno MP-18 SC (Split Cavity)

The MP-18 Split Cavity irons feature what Mizuno calls a half-cavity design. Mass has been taken of the upper portion of the irons, focusing CG (center of gravity) lower in the club head for an easier launch and more forgiveness.

The MP-18 SC irons are only fractionally longer from heel-to-toe than the MP-18 muscleback irons. They’re also 0.5 millimeters taller and have soles that are 1.5 millimeters wider. With identical specs (aside from swing weight in the longer irons) and offset, these irons are designed to blend seamlessly into a combination set with the MP-18 muscleback irons regardless of where golfers decide to split their set.

The MP-18 SC irons come stock with KBS Tour shafts and are available for left- and right-handed golfers.

Full Specs

MizunoMp18scSpecs

Mizuno MP-18 MMC (Multi-Material Construction)

The MP-18 MMC irons are Grain Flow Forged from 1025E, but they use a multi-material construction to move weight to the center of the club heads to enhance moment of inertia (MOI), a measure of forgiveness. The more centered CG is achieved by adding 20 grams of tungsten, a material more dense than steel, in the toe section of the irons. An 8-gram titanium insert, which is lighter than steel, was also placed behind the club face and toward the heel section of the club.

The titanium insert is used in each of the MMC iron designs. Tungsten was not used in the 8, 9, and PW club heads, however, as it was not needed to center CG due in those clubs.

MizunoMMCconstruction

The MP-18 MMC are designed with 0.8 millimeters less offset more than the MP-18 and SC irons, but they also have 2 degrees less loft per head. According to Mizuno, however, each degree of loft that is added when bending an iron weaker adds 0.4 millimeters of offset. That means if a golfer matches the lofts of the MP-18 MMC irons to the MP-18 or MP-18 SC irons, offset will be essentially identical.

The MP-18 MMC irons will come stock with a Nippon Modus 120 shaft, and they’re a right-handed only offering.

Full Specs

MizunoMP18MMCspecs

Mizuno MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi

Offered in long-irons only (2-6 iron), the Mizuno MMC Fli-HI irons have an X-30 steel body material with club faces made from Maraging 1770HT steel, a high-strength material that can be made thinner to help create faster ball speeds.

MizunoTngsten

Mizuno made the toplines of its new Fli-Hi significantly thinner than its predecessor, the MP-H5 iron. The toplines are also cambered to look thinner than they measure, creating a look that will suit the eye of better players, according to Mizuno. Like the MP-MMC irons, the MMC Fli-Hi irons also have 20 grams of tungsten in their toes. The insert is forged into the inside of the cavity, however, and it sits behind the face. According to Mizuno, this design helps golfers hit higher shots with the irons and increases forgiveness.

The MP-18 MMC Fli-Hi irons will come stock with KBS C-Taper shafts, and are a right-handed only offering.

Full Specs

MMCfliHiMizunoSpecs

Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about the MP-18 irons in our forums

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Andrew Tursky is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX. He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. D

    Aug 8, 2017 at 2:23 am

    At least you feel special that you can do things that right-handers can’t.

  2. Mr Poopoo

    Aug 7, 2017 at 9:00 pm

    There goes my next paycheck

  3. D

    Aug 7, 2017 at 4:20 pm

    You would know all about being hopeless, you’re hopeless

  4. BRI

    Aug 7, 2017 at 2:13 pm

    Article is littered with errors.

  5. ShankLampard147

    Aug 7, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    No combo set if you’re left handed, which is a big fail. I wanted the sc18’s, but it feels like mizuno doesn’t want my money. No fli hi is a deal breaker for me. Add to that the blue wedges and I think they should just stop making left handed clubs altogether. Any self respecting lefty wouldn’t play Mizuno.

    • joro

      Jul 11, 2018 at 11:47 am

      What do most people need with a combo set. Is it skill or ego that they think it will make them a player with them in the Bag. I am a leftie and play with the Hot Metals in Leftie that more people need, they are strong, hit high and feel soft. And the Graphite shaft is a good one.

      So Leftie, take a good look at then, them, then are grrrrrrrrreat.

  6. Edit

    Aug 7, 2017 at 11:38 am

    Think you meant to say tungsten was not used in 8-paw heads of MMC. You wrote titanium.

  7. Tommy

    Aug 7, 2017 at 11:34 am

    I’m surprised by the fat soles on the 18’s. How’s that “classic Mizuno”? I’ll wait to see them in hand but that really pops the bubble for me…

  8. Tiemco

    Aug 7, 2017 at 10:19 am

    When you say the Fli-Hi iron’s are only offered in the long irons and then you put in parentheses 6-PW. I think you meant to write 2-6.

  9. Lee Shaw

    Aug 7, 2017 at 10:15 am

    Surely these MP18’s can’t be any good they are not over $3000 for 8 irons!!

  10. Dat

    Aug 7, 2017 at 8:57 am

    Sign me up! 3 Fli-Hi, 4-6 SC, 7-PW MB

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Equipment

Brooks Koepka’s Winning WITB: The 2018 CJ Cup at Nine Bridges

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Driver: TaylorMade M3 460 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ 70TX

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 Tour HL (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ 80TX

Driving Iron: Nike Vapor Fly Pro (3)
Shafts: Fujikura Pro 95 Tour Spec X-Flex

Irons: Mizuno JPX-900 Tour (4-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 Raw (52-12F, 56-10S) Titleist Vokey SM4 TVD Raw (60-08)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron Tour Only T10 Select Newport 2

Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord (Midsize) with one wrap of 2-way tape and one wrap of masking tape

Related

See more pics of Koepka’s clubs and shafts here.

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Equipment

Laura Davies’ Winning WITB: Senior LPGA Championship

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Driver: Lynx Parallax

Shaft: Fujikura Speeder Evolution 757

3-wood: Lynx Black Cat

Hybrid: Lynx Parallax Hybrid (17 degrees)

Irons: Lynx Tour Blade (2), Lynx Parallax Forged (4-9)

Wedges: Lynx Tour (50, 56, 60 degrees)

We’re investigating the Odyssey putter and SuperStroke grip.

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Equipment

The putters used by the top 10 in strokes gained: putting

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What do the PGA Tour’s best putters use to hole out in the fewest amount of strokes on Tour? Now that the 2017-2018 PGA Tour season is behind us, we can do a thorough examination.

First, here’s a tally of what the top 10 in strokes gained: putting on Tour are using by manufacturer.

  • Bobby Grace: 1
  • Odyssey/Toulon: 4
  • Ping: 1
  • Scotty Cameron: 2
  • TaylorMade: 2

But this is GolfWRX, so of course you want to know more. Below is a breakdown of the SG:P leaders’ putters and grips.

10. Phil Mickelson

Putter: Odyssey Versa #9
Grip: SuperStroke Slim 3.0
Strokes gained: putting: .580

9. Patrick Rodgers

Putter: Toulon San Diego
Grip: SuperStroke Flatso 1.0
Strokes gained: putting: .596

8. Peter Malnati

Putter: Scotty Cameron Newport Fastback Select Prototype
Grip: Scotty Cameron Full Cord
Strokes gained: putting: .619

7. Johnson Wagner

Putter: Scotty Cameron Newport Mid Slant
Grip: Dancing Cameron Full Cord
Strokes gained: putting: .623

6. Webb Simpson

Putter: Odyssey Tank Cruiser V-Line
Grip: Odyssey Arm Lock
Strokes gained: putting: .672

5. Alex Noren

Putter: Odyssey O-Works #1W
Grip: Odyssey Jumbo Pistol
Strokes gained: putting: .682

4. Beau Hossler

Putter: Taylormade TP Ardmore 2
Grip: Taylormade Daddy Long Legs
Strokes gained: putting: .685

3. Daniel Summerhays

Putter: Ping Custom-Milled B60 Prototype
Grip: SuperStroke Ultra Slim 1.0 Pistol
Strokes gained: putting: .736

2. Greg Chalmers

Putter: Bobby Grace MacGregor V-Foil
Grip: Royal Pistol
Strokes gained: putting: .790

1. Jason Day

Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red
Grip: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red Grip (Winn Medalist)
Strokes gained: putting: .849

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