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Graphite Design Tour AD GT: Editor Review

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Pros: Extremely smooth, and stable. The mix of blue, white and silver looks awesome.

Cons: Costs as much as most new drivers — $380.

Bottom Line: The Tour AD-GT shaft is a great extension of the Tour AD line, providing all of the smoothness Graphite Design is known for in a profile that’s slightly softer than the company’s low-launch, low-spin Tour AD BB shaft. That makes it great for players who need more spin, or as a fairway wood shaft for players who enjoy the BB in their driver.

Overview

With the addition of the GT, Graphite Design’s premium line of Tour AD Shafts now comes in four different profiles.

The company’s best-known shaft, the Tour AD DI, is the orange-and-white model that has been used for several years by Tiger Woods. The company’s next most-popular shaft, the Tour AD BB, is the company’s lowest-launching, lowest-spinning shaft.

Graphite Design’s Tour AD DJ is a slightly spinnier version of the DI. That means it’s a good fairway wood shaft for golfer’s who like the feel of the DI in their driver, and also works for golfers who don’t spin the ball enough with the DI.

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The GT has the same relationship to the BB. But while it’s slightly softer than the BB, it’s slightly stiffer than the DJ, providing a lower trajectory with less spin.

According to Graphite Design, the GT has a mid-trajectory, while maintaining an optimal amount of spin.

The GT is available in five different flexes, from R2 to X, and four different weights, from 50 to 80 grams. Like the rest of the Tour AD line, the GT sells for around $380.

The Review

I’ve been a fan of Graphite Design shafts for a very long time. Years ago, I loved the company’s “Tour AD Quattro Tech” shaft so much that no matter the driver head I was playing, that pretty green shaft would be in it.

Through the years, I’ve experimented with pretty much every high-end shaft made, from prototypes to retail, and have always come back to a Graphite Design shaft in my driver. There’s something about the feel that has always worked well for me.

IMG_7944

Recently I’ve been playing the Graphite Design Tour AD DI. I’ve loved everything about it and have actually had it in play for the last three years.

Although I did a little experimenting with the Tour AD DJ and BB, I always went back to the DI. It wasn’t so much the ball flight changes or spin differences between the shafts, as I found them minimal for myself. My confidence in the DI had grown so much and I had come to build so much trust in it, it was hard for me to make a complete change. Yet when the Tour AD GT came out, like the DJ and BB, I had to give it a try.

Performance

I was really pleased with the smoothness of the shaft through the impact area. It was slightly more tip stiff than the DI, but in no way had a boardy feeling. My clubmaker built it exactly to the same CPM’s that I had in my other Miura SIT 460 driver with the DI, so I was comparing apples to apple. And the differences were genuinely noticeable

I found the trajectory to be a tad lower with the GT —  about 1 degree on a launch monitor — but I was still able to get quite a bit of carry with it. What I particularly enjoyed about the GT was that no matter how hard I swung, the shaft never felt overpowered. I’ve never been one to believe the torque numbers that shaft companies specify, but according to the Graphite Design website, the GT 6X that I tested has 3.1 degrees of torque in a 46 inch shaft (I tested it at 45.5 inches).

IMG_7936

The past months of testing have also proven to me the workability of the GT. Although I have a Tour AD DI set up identically in a Miura SIT 460, I’ve found the ability to control my trajectory a bit more simpler in the GT over the DI.

Spin numbers have also been great with the GT — about 200 to 300 rpms lower and very consistent — and the extra yards I’ve been getting out of my driver have been extremely pleasing.

Looks and Feel

The GT has the familiar AD paint job in a lustrous blue color with white rings, and the blue fades to a silver blue towards the butt. I can’t lie, as ridiculous as it may sound, one of the features that immediately grabbed me wanting to try it was the color. I love the looks of the shaft!

Each time I use the GT I’ve been pretty astounded by the smoothness of it. I’ve tested a few other drivers currently on the market with their stock shafts but my current set up has worked so beautifully, I have no reason to even think of a new experiment.IMG_7945

The Takeaway

Graphite Design has produced another super shaft with the Tour AD GT. Its feel, workability and playability have been astounding. Even the looks of it, which initially grabbed my attention, are sweet!

Anyone who’s played and liked Graphite Design shafts in the past will immediately find a familiar smoothness in the GT, however, it’s bumped up a few notches. The GT is a true tribute to the Graphite Design ideals of never letting a shaft hit the market that doesn’t excel in feel.

If you get a chance to try a friend’s driver with a GT or if your clubmaker stocks them, do yourself a favor and give it a swing. I highly recommend it as one of the best new shafts of the year.

Build Specs for Graphite Design Tour AD GT 6X

Club head: Miura SIT Driver (9 degrees, D3 swing weight)

Cut weight: 67.5 grams

Length: 45.5 inches (Installed untipped)

CPM: 268

Installed at Aloha Golf Center, Graphite Design specialist in the State of Hawaii.

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Reid's been an avid golfer for more than 40 years. During that time, he's amassed quite a putter collection and has become one of GolfWRX's leading equipment nuts. Reid tries all the latest equipment in hopes of finding the latest and greatest of them all to add to his bag. He was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii where the courses are green and the golf is great!

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