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My Fitting Experience at PING (i20 Content!)

by   |   January 1, 2012
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In early December I had the opportunity, along with fellow moderators Asleep and beruo, to tour PING’s facilities in Phoenix and get an in-depth look at their new i20 line of clubs. You can read about that here (woods) and here (irons). Being the young gun of the moderating team (21) and this being my first business trip of sorts, I was incredible excited for the experience.

One of the many highlights of the day (to be honest, I feel like everything was a highlight!) was getting to see and try out PING’s latest fitting and information gathering tool – ENSO. ENSO, which has been a collaborative project with Vicon (http://www.vicon.com) and Fujikura, is a camera system that uses lots cameras, all capable of taking tens of thousands of frames per second (PING is the first OEM with this technology). Using little reflective balls (think video game 3D imaging) that are placed on the driver head and shaft these cameras are able to track every little bit of information that an engineer would be interested in. From swing speed, shaft deflection, hand speed, shaft droop at impact, etc. PING’s engineers, led by Dr. Paul Wood, are able to learn why different things act different ways. By gathering this information they are able to better design future shafts and clubs. After hearing about the system of course I wanted to try it! So I put on my golf shoes, stretched out a bit, took some practice swings, and hit a couple balls. I wasn’t looking forward to hitting driver first without any prior warmup, but I did my best. I always knew I had a pretty high swing speed, but after trying ENSO I got an official, legitimate number (the use of cameras eliminates the error that can occur using launch monitors). After a couple mighty thwacks, I caught a good one on my third swing – 118 mph swing speed. While Asleep, beruo, and the 3 engineers showing us the system were taken back by such a high number, my jaw dropped a little bit as well. That was the highest I’ve ever been measured. I’m normally closer to 112, I must’ve had a little adrenaline going!

Better to read the original posting with all the photos and discussion… http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/561463-my-fitting-experience-at-ping-i20-content/


Following lunch, the second half of the day was spent demoing the entire i20 line. I was fortunate enough to go through a full on fitting with master fitter Bill, who does several hundred fittings a year for the likes of touring professionals, collegiate players, celebrities, and other VIPs. Having given them my current club set up prior to heading out to Arizona, there was a bag full of i20 clubs spec’d out to my current gamers to try out on the famous fitting range on the PING campus. After a quick warm up, I jumped to the i20 9 iron with CFS X-stiff shaft. Luckily for me my swing was ‘on’ after not playing much for the month previous. On maybe my fourth or fifth ball I mishit it a little bit and was asked by Mike Nicolette, the man who designed the S56 irons that I game (boy was that cool!) how far I thought the ball went. I said, “Well stock I hit a 9 iron about 150, so maybe that was 145ish?” I hit a few more, maybe 10 balls or so in total, with all the information being tracked by TrackMan and nFlight, then went over to take a look at my numbers. Initial thought – scary long. I averaged 165 yards of carry. I then went to 7 iron, which they had fitted with DG X100 (what I game). Again my numbers were scary, seriously freakishly long. I’d say on course, given normal conditions, my average carry distance is 170-175 or so – but with the i20′s per TrackMan, I was averaging 195 yards. I can’t make this stuff up. I don’t know what it was – the warmer weather, adrenaline, or something else (maybe these clubs are just stupid long?!) but the ball was going to say the least. I finished trying out the irons with a 4 iron which performed, felt, looked, and performed wonderfully. High ball flight, soft landing, consistent, and forgiving – the i20 irons truly have something going for them. Phenomenal performers that I know will be a huge hit on the iron market (not to mention there cavity isn’t gaudy looking, something I REALLY appreciate). While I game X100′s, and will continue to do so, let me say that the CFS shafts are awesome (note my dispersion was tighter with the CFS, but the X100′s give me a feel I’m used to and a flight I prefer). Period. Definitely worth trying.

Better to read the original posting with all the photos and discussion… http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/561463-my-fitting-experience-at-ping-i20-content/


After my insane session with the irons I was really looking forward to trying the hybrid and fairway wood. The i20 hybrid was a dream come true. With a slick matte black crown, black face, and black sole it looks great. Oh yeah, it performs pretty nicely too ;) . Designed to take off a little spin compared to the i15 hybrid, I was hitting rockets. Long, high, straight darts from 250+. Looking back writing this, it feels surreal trying to gather my thoughts and memories from my fitting – almost like a dream, a dream come true. While I had gone through 2011 hybrid-less, opting for an extra wedge over my hybrid, I think 2012 might be the year I cave and drop my 3 iron to add a hybrid. The i20 fairway wood was also a great performer. Absolutely awesome club that does its job, and does it well. The only thing I can hold against the hybrid and fairway is that while the black/matte black looks good, I’m afraid it won’t hold up under normal usage. After just a short session trying them out the soles and faces has noticeable marks. Not big chips or anything, but something to be considered.

Better to read the original posting with all the photos and discussion… http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/561463-my-fitting-experience-at-ping-i20-content/

For the last bit of my fitting, I got to try out drivers. Due to my high swing speed, I was brought back into the garage (indoor/outdoor) fitting room that is, I dunno, 60 yards or so further back from where I had been hitting irons/hybrids/fairways. This is where all the pros get fit, which is really cool. Seeing staff bags embroidered with the names of people I have looked up to, knowing this is where they get fit for the best tools for their profession, is a unique feeling I was lucky enough to get to experience. I tried the i20 in 8.5º loft and 70x ‘ahina shaft a half inch under standard (so playing 45″ I believe). This is similar to my setup I use in my current bag, so I wasn’t surprised to see any dramatic difference. Simply a solid performer. An anti-left club if I had to put a word on it. More workable than most as well. I was hitting some bombs. The ball flight wasn’t quite what I wanted to see, so I asked if I could try out the G20 with the same shaft. I have always been that way in the past, 983K instead of 983E, 909D2 instead of 909D3, etc. so I thought it might be a better fit. It was indeed. Similar numbers to the i20, but for whatever reason I felt more comfortable with it. Bill (my fitter) agreed and said that it’s a 75/25 or so split between the G line and i line of drivers. Also in the picture that shows my TrackMan results, I was definitely aimed right. I do NOT hit a left to right ball, trust me. haha

So yeah, I think that about covers everything. If you have any questions just ask, I’ll be checking this thread out quite frequently.

Better to read the original posting with all the photos and discussion… http://www.golfwrx.com/forums/topic/561463-my-fitting-experience-at-ping-i20-content/

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4 Comments

  1. hvilletn

    January 5, 2012 at 11:15 am

    Is this the same process that they would go through with everyone who showed up at the PING facility for a fitting? I, too, am considering making the trek to PING for a full bag fitting and if this is the same level of attention I could expect I imagine that I will be working to book this trip in the next few weeks. I am also interested in all of the shaft options that were available to you?

  2. Dewitt

    January 3, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    I’m a 5 handicap and LOVE the i15 and can’t wait till the i20 comes out. When you had this fitting did they offer every kind of shaft on the market or just ping shafts? I’m in medical sales and would like to know the cost of this process and who to call. Can you please share this with me? I will fly out to do this in a heartbeat.

  3. GolfWRX

    January 2, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    g-train,

    thanks for the comment. Ping runs a class act. The i-20 line is another example of their passion and pursuit for excellence.

  4. g-train

    January 2, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    ya cant get better service than that obviously still leading the way in all ereas by the look of this and their new lines,repeating myself but so much for being ugly or plain,others could do well to start copying their i20 and g20,because some of the other stuff this yr doesnt look as good as these two,and look to be using the dull colour that ping has been accused of over the yrs,the i20 looks cleaner and smarter than other stuff im seeing,and im by no means a ping man,im a whore.but great article ans i wish we had this in australia..when it looks like a yr where keeping it simple is what people are wanting ping is killing it so far,thanks for the sharing of your visit

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