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2013 Callaway X Forged Irons — Pics and Info

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What’s better than a forged muscleback iron at address? Nothing, except maybe an iron that looks the same, plays the same and has more forgiveness.

Callaway has attempted to create such an iron for 2013 with its X Forged, a tour-inspired forged cavity back designed by Roger Cleveland that offers cleaner looks and better performance than its predecessor, the Callaway RAZR X Forged.

Luke Williams, senior director of global woods and irons for Callaway, said the most popular irons on the PGA Tour and European Tour right now for the company are not its forged cavity backs. It’s the company’s muscleback offerings — last year’s RAZR X Muscleback irons and their predecessor, the Tour Authentic X-Prototype irons that Callaway tour players are trusting in their bags.

The reason is not necessarily that tour players don’t need the added size and forgiveness of a forged cavity back, either. Yes, one of the reasons musclebacks are more popular with tour players than forged cavity back irons is because of their clean looks. But there are also performance reasons.

According to Williams, Callaway’s recent musclebacks have been a hit because of what the company is calling CG Height progression. CG (Center of Gravity) Height Progression puts the center of gravity lower in the long irons for the higher trajectory that tour pros want. It also places the CG higher in the short irons for a flatter trajectory. Callaway’s previous forged cavity back irons, the RAZR X Forged, had the opposite CG progression. The center of gravity was actually the lowest in the short irons.

Callaway also got feedback from tour pros that the RAZR X Forged irons had a tendency to dig through impact, while the muscleback irons went more smoothly through the turf. So the new X Forged were designed to have what Williams called “a slightly wider muscleback sole.”

Aesthetically, the 2013 X Forged look more like Callaway’s musclebacks as well. They have a shorter blade length than the RAZR X Forged, but it’s not quite as short as the musclebacks. The 2013 X Forged irons also lose the high heel and sharp toe that gave the RAZR X Forged a polarizing appearance, opting for a face profile closer to the musclebacks.

“Pretty much every player that puts the muscle back iron down like the way it looks,” Williams said.

They X Forged irons go farther than the RAZR X irons as well. They do so, according to Williams, for two reasons:

  1. The clubs have one degree stronger lofts (21-degree 3 iron, 46-degree pitching wedge)
  2. CG height progression

Despite what many believe about modern iron design, the lofts were not strengthened simply to make the ball go farther. Stronger lofts are a result of tour feedback. Williams said that Callaway sets the lofts on its tour irons based on tour trends. And it’s vital for Callaway to follow the loft trends on tour, since changing the loft of an iron also reduces the bounce on an iron, which can lead to digging. Bending an iron one-degree strong won’t change a iron’s response to the turf that much, but bending a club stronger than that can certainly change things.

“We really design a forged iron product like the X Forged for the tour,” Williams said. “But we know if we get them right, they will work for amateurs as well.”

CG Height progression makes the X Forged long irons go farther because since they’re launching higher, they’re also carrying farther. It also makes the short irons go farther thanks to a more piercing trajectory.

Golfers looking for a tour-quality ball flight will also be happy to learn that the new X Forged irons come stock with a Project X PXi shaft, a lighter weight model of the popular Project X shaft with similar flight characteristics.

“We felt that PXi was the best fit, given the trend of going lighter with iron shafts,” Williams said. “Players are recognizing the value of lighter shafts if [those shafts] can maintain the consistency.”

Williams expects that the X Forged will become Callaway’s most popular iron on tour, knocking some muscleback irons out of the bags of Callaway staff players. Callaway has already received a glowing endorsement from Phil Mickelson, who was not very interested in switching from his musclebacks. He showed up to a recent Callaway ad shoot with a full set of X Forged irons in his bag and said he might put them in the bag in China at the HSBC World Golf Championships.

The 2013 Callaway X Forged irons will retail for $999.99 per set and will be available on Jan. 25, 2013.

Click here for more discussion in the “Tour/Pre-release equipment” forum. 

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Zak is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX.com. He's been a part of the company since 2011, when he was hired to lead GolfWRX's Editorial Department. Zak developed GolfWRX's Featured Writer Program, which supports aspiring writers and golf industry professionals. He played college golf at the University of Richmond (Go Spiders!) and still likes to compete in tournaments. You can follow Zak on Twitter @ZakKoz, where he's happy to discuss his game and all the cool stuff that's part of his job.

21 Comments

21 Comments

  1. Pingback: Golf-Patents.com | Is Callaway Golf Bringing Back the Powersphere?

  2. Bart Knoch

    Mar 2, 2013 at 10:54 am

    Awsome clubs..far better than my ‘former clubs” Mizuno MP-67…soft feel, explosive off of the clib face, and deadly accurate. One of the best Callaway has ever produced

  3. SMSgt Kenneth Clouthier

    Jan 3, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    When are the new Callaway Irons be released?

  4. Nat Senior

    Dec 31, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    I bought RAZR X Forged in September 2012 and these are the best Irons I’ve ever hit for distance and workability… these look even better!

  5. TJA

    Nov 8, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    Great looking iron. Long time Callaway user and can’t wait to add the newest iron to the bag. Well done Callaway!

  6. Aj

    Nov 2, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    I’d like to see this in a bore thru, like the 06 x tour forged.

  7. Pingback: Golf Inventions, Patents, and Technology via The IP Golf Guy (aka The Golf Patent Attorney): Is Callaway Golf Bringing Back the Powersphere?

  8. Ray

    Nov 1, 2012 at 8:57 am

    Forged is forged and cast is cast. You play one or the other. Just because they change the design on the back of the club makes no difference whatsoever.

  9. darren

    Oct 28, 2012 at 10:52 am

    My callaway razr forged have green writing on the head where it says forged x anyone have a idea why

    • Barry Goodman

      Mar 12, 2013 at 2:03 pm

      I believe it means that it is a custom order.
      Simple answer.

      Barry

    • Barry Goodman

      Mar 12, 2013 at 2:09 pm

      I believe that it means your clubs were a custom order.
      Simple answer.
      Regards,
      Barry

  10. Pingback: Friday Golf Mashup 10/26/12 - Golficity

  11. Greg Capstick

    Oct 26, 2012 at 1:25 am

    These are sick!!, i really think Callaway has stepped up their game in the “better player” category recently in he last couple releases starting with the x prototype, if i didnt go titleist id either be going tCallaway or Mizuno

  12. thegolfingboy

    Oct 25, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    These look really nice, I do agree though with prior comments. Definitely looks like a Mizuno typed iron, but if the shoe fits..

  13. Tyler

    Oct 25, 2012 at 12:44 am

    It looks nice, but it also looks like a tweaked Mizuno MP64. It’s even got what looks like the Mizuno diamond muscle idea going on.

    • Ikbal

      Dec 10, 2012 at 5:22 pm

      I’ve tested these clubs out and they work relaly well. I was shocked at how much control I had with the club. My favorite club is still the Nike clubs they have more power than any other club I’ve used. Check out the brand new Nike clubs in my profile.

  14. Zan

    Oct 24, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    These look great. I play the razr x forged now and love them. Can’t wait to hit these though. Not sure how I feel about project x shafts though. I love the feel of my x100s.

    • Michael

      Feb 16, 2013 at 10:41 am

      I demoed these and the x-hot irons vs many other irons at the golfsmith store the other day. The lighter project x shafts (pxi and 95) made a huge differance. My clubhead speed increased 10-15 mph on average without changing my swing effort (i hit a LOT of balls with all if them so i had a pretty large sample group). I have been a DG guy for 20+ years and I have to say im completely sold on the px stuff. 18 yrds more for the callaway irons with those shafts is huge! Very good feel and control as well.

  15. Gman

    Oct 24, 2012 at 3:00 am

    That’s a very Japan-influenced design, it looks like, to me. Very Yamaha looking, know what I mean?

  16. jgpl001

    Oct 23, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Decent looking iron. I don’t like the extra grooves on all new Callaway irons, but they are good, solid clubs.

    Much better offering than the new TM shovel

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Equipment

SPOTTED: New Callaway Forged irons… Apex or Legacy?

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Photos of a new Callaway Forged iron popped up in our GolfWRX Forums, and our members are trying to figure out whether they’re going to be replacements for Apex Pro irons, or whether they’re an update on the Legacy series. They could also be X-Forged irons, but since Callaway recently came out with new X-Forged irons, that would be unlikely.

Here’s what GolfWRX Members are saying:

  • elwhippy: A new Legacy iron? Looks a bit Japanese shaped. 
  • mattTHEkatt: Like an X-Forged/Legacy Black mashup. They look powerful. 
  • DTown3011: …gotta be the next Apex!
  • J13: Pics look like a newer legacy black.
  • mgholda: Pics look like a newer legacy black.
  • TheMoneyShot: I thought Cally was going to phase out the Apex name after they released the MBs?
  • john443: A larger cavity in these then the X- Forged… competitor to the 750 and AP3 maybe? …or Legacy Black finally brought to retail…hallelujah. CF16 replacement???!
  • Equipto: These look very sharp, and like thumpers. I don’t care if they are a Legacy Black or Apex replacement, call them whatever… i’ll try them 
  • mrmikeac: Next gen Callaway Apex Legacy? Hmmmm…..
  • Brizam: The Legacy Black might be the best players cavity back ever made.  If they were to become available they’d move straight to the top of the list of clubs to buy for me. 
  • Jourdan M: This is the Apex Pro 

Here are photos of the new Callaway irons we spotted

Previous Apex Pro irons

Previous Legacy irons

Which one do you think the new iron looks like? 

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Equipment

Wilson’s new FG Tour V6 RAW irons (yes, they will rust)

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Wilson came out with its FG Tour V6 irons in 2016, but these new Raw versions have a different look… and with time, they’ll have a VERY different look.

The new FG Tour V6 Raw irons have an unplated finish, and they’re designed to “develop a unique patina based on age, exposure and use over time,” according to Wilson. This gives each iron a unique look, and one that’s far from the clean cut original FG Tour release that had a chrome finish (which won’t rust).

In addition to the rusting effect, the irons are different because they have a copper badge in the cavity that will eventually match the color of the golf club over time. Here’s a graphic mock-up of how the Raw irons may look overtime.

Like the original releases, the irons have tungsten weights and mass behind the impact area for a “forged feel” and “improved feedback,” according to the company.

The FG Tour V6 Raw irons are a custom option on Wilson.com, and are available through Wilson’s premium partner accounts as of today, Tuesday, June 19. According to Wilson, the Raw irons “are a very limited production run,” so only a certain amount of sets will even be built.

 

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Equipment

Chief Engineer Chris Voshall on Mizuno’s approach to the Tour and some of the most insightful pros

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Mizuno’s Chief Engineer Chris Voshall chatted with Johnny Wunder on the latest episode of the Gear Dive.

Voshall offers innumerable interesting anecdotes–particularly interesting is the development of the JPX 900 iron for Brooks Koepka and Voshall’s discussion of his work with other Tour talents.

In the excerpt below, however, Voshall discusses Mizuno’s approach to Tour players and further, whose feedback has proven particularly valuable.

“We’re not making them something special. If they’re coming to us, it’s because the product is that good…They come to us instead of us having to go to them…that’s one of the really exciting things.”

Voshall indicated that players on Tour play essentially the same Mizuno products that are available at retail.

“If the Tour van is out of inventory, they can reach out to us…and we’ll get them more heads. There’s nothing unique about what they’re playing, which I think speaks to the customer…you can almost not trust marketing around the whole world these days, but for us to say ‘there’s nothing different’…that’s something we really hang our hat on.”

With respect to excellent testers on Tour, Voshall sang Luke Donald’s praises, as well as Jhonny Vegas and Brian Gay.

“I love working with Luke. Luke, especially when you’re talking irons…turf interaction, that’s the thing he’s looking for. So with Luke, you’ve really got to speak to him about how it feels, how it enter, how it exits [the turf] and how that’s causing the ball to launch. You could give him the exact same head with a slightly different sole grind, and he will love or hate one versus the other. He’s really cool to work with on that front.”

“Jhonny Vegas…he’s raw power. He goes at it. He wants to slam the club into the ground as hard as he can and see where it goes. He very much on the opposite end of the spectrum as Luke, who’s very much an artist out there, trying to work it, trying to do different things.”

“One of my favorite guys to work with, even though he’s not on staff anymore, is Brian Gay. He knows his game. He knows equipment. Speaking to the fact that he’s been out on Tour as long as he has and has the wins he has with the length he hits the ball, it shows that he does not miss a shot. And he knows everything…when he makes a comment on a club, that’s the one that I take most serious.”

For the rest of Voshall’s insights and perspective, give the full podcast a listen below.

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