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GolfWRX Spotted: Cobra RF Prototype irons

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Cobra Golf tour staff members have always had some of the coolest irons in the game. From Bryson’s first single length sets to Rickie’s first black forged CBs—being part of a smaller staff means attention to detail for each player, and in the case of Cobra and Rickie Fowler, that means truly one-off prototypes!

Yesterday, we got a sneak peak when someone at the Floridian Club posted a distance shot of Rickie’s clubs on the back of a cart. Although it was from a distance, an astute eyes quickly noticed that these were not a current model iron and speculation started to swirl.

Starting early this morning photos starting making the rounds on social media after they were initially posted in the GolfWRX Forums by Member J13, featuring what looks to be close up in-hand images of Rickie Fowler Cobra Prototype blades. The telltale signs include Rickie’s signature Tungsten toe weight to help increase head weight in each head, and the obvious RF initials milled into the toe, under a King Cobra Crown.

Although the pictures are now out, we have few details to go on from Cobra. What I do know is at the Cobra SpeedZone event hosted a few weeks ago to showcase the new line, there was lots of hush-hush discussion that we might see something new coming in the better players category soon, but no pictures or other details were released. These pictures certainly indicate that the Cobra iron team has been working on something with Rickie, and gotten them to the point of having them out in the world for testing.

This is merely speculation, but what’s interesting to point out is that nowhere in the iron does it say forged! Could this be because it’s still a prototype and they didn’t want to go the extra step to stamp that on the head or could it mean something else?

The picture above shows the head on a fixed block—something observed during the CNC milling process, but going deeper Cobra has been pushing the limit of iron construction for a long time, and last year did they introduce a (MIM) Metal Injection Molded wedge to the consumer. Could this non-forged blade be the result of using MIM technology to form a mostly finished iron head to then have the face milled?

Like I said, we don’t have any confirmation yet from Cobra and their R&D team, but this could be a very interesting development for full release iron construction come 2020.

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Ryan Barath is part of the Digital Content Creation Team for GolfWRX. He hosts the "On Spec" Podcast on the GolfWRX Radio Network which focuses on discussing everything golf, including gear, technology, fitting, and course architecture. He is a club-fitter & master club builder with more than 17 years of experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour players. He is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf. He now works independently from his home shop and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, and share his passion for club building, course architecture and wedge grinding.

19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. Hamish

    Nov 28, 2019 at 8:20 pm

    Look like Yonex Ezone MB’s

  2. uglande

    Nov 28, 2019 at 8:57 am

    These look fantastic. A lot like the new Titleist 620 MB. It seems like the blade length is a little longer than some blades, which I like, but it also looks like they have a pretty sharp leading edge and no camber, which would worry me. But granted, it’s hard to get a definitive look from these pics alone.

  3. Danny Gray

    Nov 27, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    Reminds me of when Nelly Korda turned pro, I just can’t turn my eyes away ????

  4. Soren Bollerup Hansen

    Nov 27, 2019 at 1:47 am

    They look like Mizuno MP18!!

  5. Seth Riser

    Nov 26, 2019 at 9:35 pm

    Are you on the Cobra payroll? How many articles can you write about Cobra? Enough already.

    • Chris

      Nov 27, 2019 at 11:01 am

      When new product gets released, it’s standard procedure to write about it. Don’t you think? Don’t be so triggered, guy!

      • Hoganben

        Dec 4, 2019 at 11:28 pm

        Trendy new term I am seeing everywhere…’triggered’. People who use the term are so ‘with it’. I am guessing that they are the same guys who used to say ‘zombie thread’ or ‘use the search feature’.

  6. Andy H

    Nov 26, 2019 at 5:36 pm

    Does this squash the water cooler talk of RF going to TM….????

  7. Mower

    Nov 26, 2019 at 5:18 pm

    I’ll get ’em if the price is right. (say… $750)

  8. Bird Is Da Word

    Nov 26, 2019 at 4:45 pm

    I knew there was a reason why ive been sandbagging on replacing my 2017 Cobra MBs. I have a set of the OG TW Nike blades and a set of Mizunos that pretty much just sit around bc the Cobras are that much better.

  9. Philly Mick

    Nov 26, 2019 at 2:46 pm

    Gorgeous looking blades, such a good looking port for the tungsten weight to create COG, hope that they come in Lefty!

  10. Chuckie Baby

    Nov 26, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    With these blades, all I need is a basket of bread and sliced butter! Let’s eat, and add 15 strokes to my scorecard!

    • jgpl001

      Nov 26, 2019 at 3:05 pm

      It’s hard not to disagree with these comments
      They are beautiful, but they are mean, very mean, they make the MP20’s look like GI’s…

    • Brandon

      Nov 26, 2019 at 6:36 pm

      Like most amateurs, I’d imagine your poor rounds are caused by hitting drives ob, chunking chips, and 3 putts. I’ve played everything from blades to SGI’s and my scores never change based on the irons I’m carrying.

      • Jack

        Nov 26, 2019 at 9:01 pm

        Ain’t that the truth. Just play what you like. Nobody has actually quantified how many strokes you lose playing SGI vs blades. Of course, if you have a really slow swing speed and have trouble getting the ball in the air, you should be the SGI since even a good strike will not yield a good shot. But for average speed guys it should be OK.

      • jgpl001

        Nov 27, 2019 at 4:14 am

        I can’t disagree with you, if I keep it in play I score well, very well
        Currently swapping in/out P750’s and MP18’s, and the best irons I ever had were 710MB’s
        Not afraid of blades and never played any type of GI club, but these new Cobra’s remind me of my first set of irons that belonged to my father, a set of Wilson Staff blades….now those gave many a stingy finger

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Whats in the Bag

Chris Baker WITB 2020

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chris-baker-witb-2020
  • Equipment accurate as of January 2020

Driver: Callaway Epic Flash Sub Zero Triple Diamond (9 degrees, D1 setting)
Shaft: Nippon N.S. Pro Regio Formula M+ X 65

3-wood: Callaway Epic Flash (15 degrees, NS setting)
Shaft: Nippon N.S. Pro Regio Formula M+ X 75

5-wood: Cobra King F9 Speedback Tour (17.5 degrees)
Shaft: Nippon N.S. Pro Regio Formula M+ X 75

Irons: Cobra King F9 Speedback (4), Miura MC-501 (4-PW)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 Tour 130

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (50-08F, 56-10S, 60-06M)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 Tour 130 (50), True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 (56, 60)

Putter: Scotty Cameron TSB Prototype
Grip: SuperStroke SS2R

Grip: Golf Pride Tour Velvet

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All-new Callaway Jaws MD5 Raw and tour-inspired T-Grind wedges

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Callaway Raw MD5 Wedge

Callaway is adding to its successful Callaway Jaws MD5 lineup with a new grind and a new look: MD5 Raw and T-Grind wedges.

The Callaway Jaws MD5 story

As we covered in the original 2020 Callaway MD5 launch piece, these wedges are more than just a stepping stone for the engineering team at Callaway, and instead are a complete evolution of how they design and manufacture their wedges. Here’s why: By reinventing the overall groove shape compared to previous models, they have succeeded in increasing both spin and total control on full and less-than-full shots.

The proprietary groove design of the Jaws wedge gets the contact radius right to the limit set forth by the governing bodies. How closes are we talking?” So close that the initial response from Callaway’s manufacturing partner was “Sorry, we just can’t do this” because the failure rate was close to 50 percent of heads becoming nonconforming.

The solution for Callaway? Changing the cutting tool used on the grooves every 15 wedges. Sure, you could attempt to get more life out of each tool, but when you have everyone from recreational players to the world’s best putting them in play, you can’t make sacrifices.

Callaway 2020 MD5 JAWS Wedge Grooves

2020 Callaway Jaws MD5 wedge: groove detail

The end result is the MD5 Jaws spins over 10 percent more on shots hit around the green compared to the Callaway MD4 and launches lower by one degree. Lower launch is important, because if you talk to any short game coach with a launch monitor, or Roger Cleveland, in Callaway’s case, you will quickly realize that being able to control launch with a wedge is just as important as it is with a driver. A lower-launching wedge means the coefficient of friction is higher since the ball isn’t riding/sliding up the face—and boom, you have a greater ability to hit the “low checker.”

callaway-jaws-md5-raw-lineup

The raw finish

After many years of limited retail availability, raw wedges have come back in style in a big way thanks to more golfers understanding the benefits of an unplated wedge—it also helps that the most popular finish option in professional golf is raw and unplated too.

The Callaway Jaws MD5 Raw is made from 8620 mild carbon steel to offer a soft feel. Over time, the unplated finish will patina to reduce glare—nothing worse than trying to hit a wedge shot on a sunny day and having the full reflection of the sun nearly blind you in the process.

callaway-jaws-md5-raw-face

The Raw MD5 maintains all the other design features of the already available MD5 wedges, including the four ports and medallions on the back of the head to raise CG for greater trajectory control—but also gives golfers the added option to customize through Callaway Customs.

The T-Grind story

Just like how raw finishes have grown in popularity, so have wedge grinds that offer greater versatility on full and partial shots around the green. The new T-Grind (available in 58 and 60-degree lofts) is a popular choice because it has a higher measured bounce in a standard neutral playing position, but thanks to the crescent sole with heel, toe, and trailing edge relief, the leading edge can get closer to the ground on shots played with an open face.

This puts bounce where you need it and takes it away from places you don’t. Compared to the similar-looking X-Grind (available in 54 and 56-degree lofts) the T has less bounce which can also help players that are more shallow or play in softer more lush conditions.

The new T Grind will also look different from address compared to the standard higher lofted MD5 wedges because they have a slightly thicker topline to raise CG for controlled ball flight.

Availability, Specs & Pricing

The new MD5 wedges will be available for purchase at retail and online starting June 4, and the retail price is $159.99

Lofts – (Italicized are the new grind options)

Right Handed:

  • 50° S Grind,
  • 52° S Grind
  • 54° S and X Grind
  • 56° S and X Grind
  • 58° S,  X, and T Grind
  • 60° S, T, and X Grind
  • 62° C Grind

Left Handed:

  • 52° S Grind
  • 56° S Grind
  • 60° S Grind

The wedges come with 3 premium stock shaft options, Steel: Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S200. Graphite: ProjectX Catalyst 80, and UST Recoil wedge F1 ( Ladies flex only )

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What GolfWRXers are saying about Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges

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@clevelandgolfeu

In our forums, our members have been discussing Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges. WRXer ‘hammergolf’ wants to hear from single-digit players who are currently playing the wedges, and our members have been sharing their thoughts on the clubs with plenty of praise for the wedges in our forums.

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.

  • cfmgolf: “I am definitely a believer. Tried it on a whim at a PGA SuperStore in FL last fall and was stunned by the consistency of it. Changed from a RTX3 to the CBX2 in my 52* gap within a couple of weeks. Now that we are back in OH for the summer, I changed out 3 wedges (Ping Glide 3.0, and 2 of the RTX 4’s) for an entire bag of the CBX2’s. I am trying the full face in my 56* and found it to be very good also. Biggest benefit for me has been the consistency of the CBX line. Shots out of the rough that can be high on the club don’t really lose much – i.e. more forgiving. I go between a 6-8HCP, and short game is my strong point. Very happy with them so far.”
  • JCRay33: “6 handicap here and bought a couple CBX’s (54 and 58) from 2nd swing a couple months ago and absolutely love them! Way more forgiving than typical blade wedges (had vokeys before) and great feel as well. It’s easy for ego to get in the way and not want to get these, but once you realize, all that matters is performance the choice is a no-brainer and results speak for themselves really.”
  • mortimer: “CBX2 50. Excellent gap wedge for full, 3/4 shots and chipping. Forgiving, consistent and more than acceptable spin numbers. Also offset is fine to my eye. Having said all that I would not game a 58/60 degrees one if you like to manipulate the face for different shots around the green as I do. Intrigued though with the new full-face but have not seen one in person yet.”
  • Simp: “I have a set of 58, 54 & 50 raw CBX2’s allegedly tour issue, and I love them. The 58 has a grind that is lovely. I’m a 0 FYI.”
  • nicelife: “I have Srixon irons and Mizuno T20 wedges. I found the CBX2 50 was the perfect transition club between sets. LOVE the Srixon/Cleveland V-Sole. Visually the face has more grooves than I would normally like to look at, but its performance more than makes up for it. I really like the satin finish. So much so I’m thinking about refinishing my irons. Go for it you won’t be sorry.”

Entire Thread: “Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges”

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