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A Q&A with Seven Dreamers about its $1,200 shafts

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We spotted Seven Dreamers at Demo Day at the PGA Show last year and were impressed by GolfWRX member chiromikey’s fitting experience in Japan. With the company expanding to the U.S. market, we wanted to dig a little deeper.

The Japanese company says that once you demo one of the its $1,200 shafts, you’ll see and feel its superiority to your current gamer. Fortunately for those interested, you’ll soon be able to do so at select fitters and green grass locations in the U.S.

Seven Dreamers is rooted in the aerospace industry. An interesting note: In 1998, the company was involved in the development of Japan’s “Hayabusa” spacecraft, the first and only unmanned craft to land on an asteroid and return to earth with a sample from the surface. The shafts are made in Tokyo by a team of craftsmen and scientists who collaborate to custom build each shaft. A point of differentiation: Seven Dreamers uses an autoclave pressure chamber in its manufacturing process. Other manufacturers cure their shafts in ovens. The company says this process produces superior quality carbon fibers, reduced resin, and eliminated the need for grinding, polishing, or painting.

For the U.S. and Canadian market, the company offers 33 different bend profiles, identified from thousands of fittings.

We spoke with Mike Rossi, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Seven Dreamers.

GolfWRX: Tell us a little bit about the history of the company, as our readers likely aren’t too familiar with Seven Dreamers.

Mike Rossi: The company started back in 1957 under the name Super Resin. At that time they were into fiber-reinforced plastics…as time moved on, they got into composites (composite design, composite products). That led into aerospace involvement. So, there’s always been a precision, high-end focus. If you fast-forward to today, the company has three divisions. They launched the golf division in Japan in 2014. There’s also a medical division, which designed a disposable sleep apnea device…that’s been on sale in Europe and Japan for the past couple of years and is under FDA review here. And then there’s a third division: electronics…they’ve developed and patented the only fully automatic laundry folding robot.

The name came from…the chairman at the time, he envisioned seven centers of excellence throughout the world.

GolfWRX: Why a golf shaft?

MR: The company wants to leverage its expertise in composite material. They’re using a variety of specialty materials…the quality of which is fit for satellites. The premium-grade materials required prompted the interest in golf.

GolfWRX: What sets Seven Dreamers apart?

MR: What really sets us apart is the process. Every shaft is made on a mandrel, and our mandels are absolutely pristine. The material is placed by hand on the mandrel. It’s then inserted into a mold. Then we autoclave cure it. The beauty of autoclave curing is it’s done under pressure…which gives us outstanding compaction. It squeezes out all the unnecessary resin, so we get an optimal ratio of carbon fiber to resin, which improves both feel and energy transfer in the shaft. But the best part of the process is, once we remove the shaft from the mold, we literally trim it to length and wipe it down. The surface condition is perfect. So, we have no unbroken fibers. We have no fiber tears. We have no fiber bullets. All that contributes to incongruities and inconsistencies in the shaft.

Virtually every other manufacturer, they put their material on the mandrel, and then they use shrink tape. Then the shrink tape is removed after curing, and you’ve got the inconsistencies–the rough edges of the tape–so then everybody else grinds the profile. I’m not saying that’s a terrible way to do it, but I’m saying I believe our way is better, and there’s no one else that’s doing it the way we do.

GolfWRX: Talk a little bit about the company’s positioning in the shaft market…

MR: Our company decided we wanted to focus on the ultra-high-end. What they did in Japan to start out, they went out and obtained several hundred clubs that were on the market–primarily driver heads. They measured the inertial properties and the physical properties of all these heads just to understand how they performed, then they worked to develop shafts that were optimized for certain heads.

This really morphed into two what I’ll call “studios” in Tokyo where consumers can come in and hit balls on the simulator and try different shafts. The one they like best, whether it’s their gamer or ours, we place sensors on the shaft. Using our proprietary 3D system, we then measure their particular loading and how they deliver the clubhead…how the shaft performs during the swing. Then all those measurements are recorded, and we design them a shaft 100 percent custom. The process takes three to four weeks. It’s designed for the golfer and the particular head he chooses to play. So, it’s truly custom.

We’ve done thousands of those over the past few years, and the ticket on that is $2,500. So yes, it’s premium. It’s high-end. We believe the premium end is the last frontier in the golf space. We’re not trying to sell to everybody. We’re trying to identify high-end fitters. We’re looking at aspirational clientele who wants the best, highest-quality stuff out there.

GolfWRX: Tell us about the range of shafts…

MR: We go from the mid-to-low 40s in weight all the way up to the 80s with three different bend profiles, which are basically low-, mid-, and high-launch. Our U.S. product offering will contain 28 driver shafts to start. We have iron shafts in development, hybrid shafts too, which we’ll be adding. Our wood shaft’s MSRP is $1,200. Our main objective with the launch is to be able to fit a wide range of players: from amateurs to tour professionals.

GolfWRX: What can you tell us about any comparison testing you’ve done?

MR: As odd as this sounds, we don’t compare to existing shafts in the marketplace. Our history and experience is based on our analysis and the fittings we’ve done with players at all levels, and we’ve seen appreciable gains and improvements both in distance and dispersion. But we’re not out there to denigrate any of our competitors. That’s not what we’re about.

Back to the decision to enter the ultra-premium space more about a market opportunity or did it necessarily follow from the sophistication of the manufacturing process and materials?

It’s a combination of both. Certainly, we saw that niche. But with our costs and our structure, we’re not a commodity supplier…we selected a niche where we can succeed. So it’s high-end fitters and high-end facilities, but we’re also seeking OEM partners that want to enter that ultra-premium space.

GolfWRX: Are there any thoughts toward a presence on Tour?

MR: We will have a face of the brand. It will be a recognized, credible player. A proper driver of the golf ball…that search is underway, but we’re not going to do it the way it’s currently being done [tour van, large professional staff].

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Ed

    Jan 31, 2018 at 1:14 pm

    There you have it fellow gearheads…. oven-baked graphite shafts are inferior to autoclave cured shafts because there is too much ‘plastic’ resin in the inferior shafts. Carbon graphite is a metal and has the dynamic properties of steel shafts less the weight.
    Cheap graphite shafts have inconsistent dynamic properties, particularly in the tip section during final release when the shaft is whip-snapping… drooping, torquing and recovering. One graphite manufacturer blends steel strands into their shafts. Steel is the gold standard and graphite shafts are soggy and floppy going through impact.
    That’s why tour pros prefer heavier weight shafts because the very low weight shafts were like spaghetti at high swing speeds.
    You can get away with heavy graphite shafts for irons but not light weight shafts for drivers. Light weight graphite shafts are adequate for slower swing speed recreational golfers, not for pros.

    • OB

      Feb 1, 2018 at 11:12 am

      Does that mean gearhead’s clubs are fitted with inferior epoxy-filled shafts that are unstable and ruin their swing release action? Pros use heavier weighted graphite shafts to compensate for shaft inconsistencies; shafts over 100 grams like Sadlowski using the 104 gram Nunchuk shaft mentioned in another WRX article.

      • Ed

        Feb 3, 2018 at 2:41 am

        Off your meds much. Conspiracy theory posts on almost every article and you reply to your own comments. Sad

        • OB

          Feb 5, 2018 at 11:41 am

          Where, oh where
          Have the gear heads gone?
          Where, oh where can they be?
          With shirts cut long
          And pants cut short
          Where, oh where can they be?
          I last saw them by the putting green
          Playing and puttering around
          But I just can’t see them anymore
          They just can’t seem to be found
          Perhaps the club pro over there will know
          He may have seen them go by
          But who knows where
          They might have decided to go away
          But we’ve got to give it a try

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pga tour

Justin Rose’s Winning WITB: 2018 Fort Worth Invitational

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Driver: TaylorMade M3 440 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK 70TX

3 wood: TaylorMade M4 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK 80TX

5 wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK 80TX

Irons: TaylorMade P790 (4 iron), TaylorMade P730 Rose Proto (5-9 iron)
Shafts: KBS Tour C-Taper 125 S+

Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (48, 52, 56 degrees), TaylorMade Hi-Toe (60 degrees)
Shafts: KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 135X

Putter: TaylorMade TP Ardmore 2

Golf Ball: TaylorMade TP5

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Equipment

Jimmy Walker spotted testing a Titleist prototype driver?

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As spotted by GolfWRX Forum Member “anthony007,” Jimmy Walker was shown on the Golf Channel’s Morning Drive hitting an unidentified driver at the Warrior Open.

In anthony007’s forum post, along with the photo, he asks the question “Is this a new Driver from Titleist?”

Well, it’s hard to tell from the grainy photo exactly what the driver says on the sole. But then Jimmy Walker himself posted on Twitter saying: “Great catch! Its always fun to test new prototypes and the [Titleist on Tour] guys have given me some cool toys to play with that are incredible – but unfortunately I can’t talk about them yet!”

While the response is a bit cryptic, it does seem that Walker confirms he was indeed testing a Titleist prototype driver.

What do you think?

Click here to see what GolfWRX members are saying about the photo.

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Whats in the Bag

UNLV Rebels WITB: 2018 NCAA Men’s Championship

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The University Of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) Men’s Golf team is participating in the 2018 NCAA Championship at Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Oklahoma on May 25-30. Representing the Mountain West Conference, the team is led by Head Coach Dwaine Knight.

To see the team’s full roster, click here

Below, we highlight the clubs and shafts that each of the players on the team are using at the championship.

Shintaro Ban

Driver: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Orange 70TX

3 Wood: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Blue 80TX

Hybrid: Callaway Epic (20 degrees)
Shaft: Oban Steel 115

Irons: Callaway X Forged (4 and 5 iron), Callaway Apex MB (6-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Fourteen RM Raw wedge (50, 55 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 (50 and 55), S400 (60)

Putter: Odyssey O-Works 7S

Harry Hall

Driver: Titleist 917D2 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Orange 70TX

3 Wood: Titleist 917 F3 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue M-AX 65TX

5 Wood: Titleist 917 F2 (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue M-AX 65TX

Irons: Titleist 718 AP2 (3-9 iron)
Shafts: KBS Tour V 120X

Wedges: Titleist SM7 (48, 54 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold S300

Putter: Evenroll ER5 Hatchback (36.5 inches)

Jack Trent

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (8.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 7X

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 Tour (15 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 8TX

Hybrid: Titleist H2 818 (17 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 105X

Irons: Titleist T-MB (4 iron), Titleist 718 CB (5-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold X100

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (50, 56 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold X100

Putter: Scotty Cameron Futura X5R
Grip: SuperStroke Flatso 1.0 (35 inches)

Justin Kim

Driver: TaylorMade M2 2017 (10.5 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 7TX

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 2017 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-TP 8TX

Driving Iron: Titleist 712U (3 iron)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 105X

Irons: TaylorMade P-750 (4-PW)
Shaft: KBS $-Taper 130X

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Sm6 (50, 54 and 58)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron

Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Justin Chong

Driver: TaylorMade M4
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-IZ 6X

3 Wood: TaylorMade M3
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 7X

5 Wood: Ping G30
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 7X

Hybrid: TaylorMade M1 (21 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD 85X

Irons: Miura CB-57 (4-PW)
Shafts: Project X LZ 6.5

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (52-09 F Grind and 58-08 M Grind)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Odyssey V-Line Fang O-Works

Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Garrick Higgo

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue Silver 60X 120MS

3 Wood: Titleist 917F3 (15 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana Black 70 TX

Hybrid: Titleist 816H2 (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue 85H X-Flex

Driving Iron: Titleist TMB (2, 3 and 4 iron)
Shaft: KBS C-Taper 130X

Irons: Titleist AP2 (5-PW, GW)
Shafts: KBS C -Taper 130X

Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 Matte Black (55 and 60 degrees)
Shafts: KBS C-Taper 130X

Putter: Scotty Cameron Futura X7M Black Tour Only

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

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