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WRX Spotlight: KBS TD driver shaft

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The skinny: For the first time ever, KBS is adding a driver/wood shaft to the KBS product line (read our full launch story here). The KBS TD is a lighter and stiffer driver/wood shaft with characteristics of the original KBS feel. It is the perfect complement to their already proven performance-driven line of golf shafts. According to founder Kim Braly, “TD is the culmination of my years of shaft design being put into the most exciting club in your bag. The KBS TD will change the way you look at driver shafts.”

Our take on KBS TD shafts

The TD series is really a shaft connoisseurs dream; allowing not only a range of weights (40 to 80 grams) and stiffness 1-5 (yes numbers, not letters) but also up to four inches of tipping. This is an important nuance because with the right equipment and expertise, shafts can be very specifically matched to players.

For testing, KBS provided three shafts. To help me, I enlisted the help of my friend (and world-class fitter) Lyndon Wilson. Lyndon, owner of Golf Studio 360 at Orange County National in Orlando, Florida, is a world class fitter and builder with a resume that includes working with a wealth of PGA Tour players. Together with a FlightScope and Digiflex 2.0.

The first thing that struck us was the quality of the product: the shafts had tight specs on frequency and weight (no surprise here!). However what was really cool was Lyndon’s ability to move frequency slightly to really create shafts that would be tailored to my game. Based on our relationship, which includes playing a lot of golf together, he made up two shafts

  1.  50g, category 2 tipped an inch to play 6.0 to test in my driver at 45 inches
  2. 69g, category 2, not tipped and playing 5.5 for my 3 wood to test at 43.5 inches

Side note: watching Lyndon work, it is clear that these shafts, in the right hands, offer fitters a tremendous opportunity to perfectly fit each and every player.

But there’s still the big (and most important) question: how did it work? As one would expect, this is where KBS shines; performance.

In my opinion, KBS has hit another home run: producing a high-quality product that maximizes feel and consistency.

For more on the KBS TD shafts, check out Ryan Barath’s launch story. 

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Fraser

    Nov 2, 2019 at 3:46 am

    That is THE most uninformative, worst written piece I have ever seen on this website. I would know more about the shaft by just looking at the picture than by reading what was wrote. No talk of what the shaft is like other than it “maximizes feel and consistency”. Gee thanks. The author should be embarrassed.

    • Ben Alberstadt

      Nov 2, 2019 at 3:09 pm

      I’m sorry you feel that way. Please read our launch feature linked multiple times in the article for more nuanced information. The WRX Spotlight Series complements the features; no article therein is expected to contain the information included in our launch stories.

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Equipment

Forum Thread of the Day: “Courses that are now obsolete on Tour due to power in the game?”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from Titleist99 who asks WRXers if they feel some golf courses are now obsolete on Tour due to the ever-growing power element in the game. Some of our members list tracks which they think will struggle to host majors again, while others explain why they feel every famous course still has its place on the calendar.

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.

  • oikos1: “The courses aren’t obsolete because most fans enjoy seeing a course overpowered. Golf traditionalists may not like it but just look at other sports today. Sure, a no-no, once it gets to the 7th becomes interesting, but most fans want to see homers and runs scored. Same in basketball, no one wants a pro game ending at 60-54 and football clearly is shooting for high scoring passing affairs. The majority of golf fans just don’t want to watch pro’s grind it out every week. They want to cheer for birdies and eagles. They want to see if the impossible is possible, the potential for crazy good. Bring on the 54 in golf! So no, golf courses aren’t becoming obsolete. PGA Tour attendance has been on the rise the last three years. If anything, they are looking at ways to make the events bigger and will seek venues that allow for just that.”
  • LICC: “Some former Majors courses that are now too short for the majors: St. Louis, Canterbury, Northwood, Prestwick, Myopia, Five Farms, Wannamoisett, Chicago Golf Club.”
  • Obee: “The problem with the shorter courses is that the Tour players don’t like having driver taken out of their hands. And that’s really all it is. They get ‘bored.’I get it; it does take away a large part of the game. But I would love to see them play more short courses were drivers taken out of their hands on a good number of holes. But as far as ‘obsolete’ goes. None of the courses are obsolete. They are just different.”
  • NJpatbee: “Course design and not just length add to the difficulty of a course. Pine Valley will never host a pro tournament because of their inability to handle the crowds; I would speculate that even the regular tees would be a challenge for the PGA Tour pros. The Championship Tees would be a bear. Now, I have never played there, but I am available if any member wishes to invite me!”
  • Titleist99: “PGA TOUR might want to add a little rough to protect our classic courses..”

Entire Thread: “Courses that are now obsolete on tour due to power in the game?”

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Whats in the Bag

Jason Dufner WITB 2019

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Jason Dufner WITB is accurate as of the 2019 RSM Classic 

Driver: Cobra King F9 Speedback (10.5 @9.5 degrees)
Shaft: LA Golf Shafts OLYSS RSC 65-TX (45.75”)jason-dufner-witb

3-wood: Cobra SpeedZone (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: LA Golf Shafts OLYSS RSC 75-TX (tip 1”, 43”)

7-wood: Titleist 915F (21 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue Silver 125 MSI 80 TX

4-iron: Cobra King Forged Utility
Shaft: LAGP Proto Rev A

  • Note: Dufner also has a set-matching King Forged 4-iron in the bag, leading us to assume the 4-iron is a game-time decision.

Irons: Cobra King Forged CB (5-PW)
Shafts: True Temper AMT Tour White S400

Wedges: Cobra Raw Custom (52, 56 degrees), Cobra King MIM (60 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron Tour Newport Circa 2001
Grip: Super Stroke Pistol GTR Tour


Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Grips: Super Stroke S-Tech Cord

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Equipment

GolfWRX Spotted: Prototype Callaway Apex MB

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Callaway Prototype blade 2020 MB

“Its the most wonderful time fo the year” I’m talking testing and prototype season on the PGA Tour as we head into the winter break. At the RSM Classic, we spotted what looks to be some early Callaway prototype irons in the bag of Aaron Wise.

We’ve seen a few different Callaway Prototype MBs in players’ bags this year including a “special Japanese forged” version made for a few players, including Open Championship winner Francesco Molinari, and more recently, Maverick McNealy.

The new Prototype MB/Blade has all the telltale signs of a traditional Callaway-shaped blade including the thinner hosel-to-top transition—also known as the crotch of the iron—rounded lines, high toe, and short heel-to-toe length. What makes it a unique Callaway iron, of course, is the noticeable screw in the back of the head behind the center of gravity.

This design feature is not new, and for many gear junkies probably brings back memories of the original Adams Pro Black MB irons or the 2011 TaylorMade MBs.

 

By using a weight screw instead of traditional tip weights to get the club to spec, there is zero chance of moving the center of gravity horizontally towards the heel of the club. It helps add mass to improve feel. In most cases, a blade/MB iron from any OEM is built as a showpiece in a classic design. If we are looking at the new Apex MB from Callaway as a potential release in 2020, sticking to a classic style can be a great thing.

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