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Driver head/face shape: pros/cons


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#1 macedan

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Posted 13 July 2018 - 09:28 PM

My two drivers (VRS Covert and R7 superquad) have noticeable different headshapes even though both are 460cc head. The Covert compared to the R7 from head on is much flatter/broader where as the R7 seems to have a taller narrower face. I realize there are probably more shapes and sizes but these have been my only two to compare from.

I’ve always wondered if driver face/head shape has any noticeable difference on performance. If you have any insight please enlighten me on pros/cons and which you prefer.

Nike VRS-Covert 11.5*
Taylormade R7 Steel 15*
Taylormade Aeroburner 18*
Taylormade Rescue 11 21*
Taylormade Rocketbladez (5-PW)
Cleveland CBX 50/11
Titleist Vokey SM5 54/10
Cleveland RTX-3 58/8
Taylormade Nubbins B1S
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#2 Valtiel

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Posted 14 July 2018 - 04:20 AM

The biggest tech impact (aside from the psychological and acoustic ones) comes from the way those different head shapes allow weight to be distributed. Drivers that stretch back further will have more weight further away from the face, increasing MOI and thus average launch angle and forgiveness. Drivers that are shorter front to back and taller top to bottom will normally have lower MOI and generally speaking will be longer and less forgiving. There is also the matter of vertical CG. Taylormade has long utilized the "low and forward" design approach for a few simple reasons; its an easier type of driver to make and will on average produce the most impressive numbers on good strikes. This is why TM has always been at the front of the distance race because while other drivers will likely be longer on average, TM's longest will often be longer than everyone else's. Low CG makes it easier to achieve high launch/low spin conditions.

Nike on the other hand went in the complete opposite direction towards the end producing very high CG drivers that were spinnier and ended up being left behind in the distance race. Now this did make them more accurate (more spin = more axis tilt necessary to send the ball offline) and maybe this was what they were counting on but clearly it didn't work out. This is all came down to head design and weight distribution.
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