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Can the absolutely best irons make a profound difference?


35 replies to this topic

#1 Under2hours

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 07:53 AM

I debate this over and over.  Have Speedblades and since playing a lot, playing the best golf I ever had.  Bad hits are my fault plain and simple.

Now I do realize that if if properly measured and fitted, maybe that would make a difference, but the question is whether a new set of irons (off the rack) if price no object (okay $800 ceiling) would make any difference at all.

Conversely I do think Drivers (and having a fairly new one) is important and less so for fairway woods & hybrids.

Am I wrong in this thought process?


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#2 justasgood

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 08:00 AM

Stick with what is working and limit your bad swings.

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#3 skisnutz

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 08:01 AM

As a 13 Hcp I would guess that your path to lower scores is likely through your putter and short game/wedges.  You could spend any amount on your irons and none of that would change.  I also can almost guarantee that $800 in lessons would likely lower your scores faster and further than a new set of irons.  This was my experience in getting from 13 to a 6.
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#4 HackATK

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 08:10 AM

You may find that a new different set of irons might make your misses less punishing but as far as making a player better, that comes from practice and lessons if need be. I'm not familiar with speedblades, so I don't know how forgiving they are. If you have never taken lessons, I would find a coach that you like and put in the work it takes to lower your Hc to single figures.

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#5 Under2hours

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 10:04 AM

View PostHackATK, on 10 August 2018 - 08:10 AM, said:

You may find that a new different set of irons might make your misses less punishing but as far as making a player better, that comes from practice and lessons if need be. I'm not familiar with speedblades, so I don't know how forgiving they are. If you have never taken lessons, I would find a coach that you like and put in the work it takes to lower your Hc to single figures.
No lessons for me......  Can't teach an old dog new tricks.....  TaylorMade Speedblades btw......   Always bought off the rack (or trades).

Oh and forgot......  Who needs practice!!!!


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#6 tsecor

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 10:07 AM

the answer is no.......a small impact maybe, profound......not a chance

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#7 duffer987

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 10:11 AM

$800? Not a chance
$802? Absolutely profound change! Not as profound as playing 100+ actual strokes in a round, but only counting 85 of them... but a close second.

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#8 jslane57

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 10:19 AM

The best irons can make a huge difference if being compared to ill fitted worst irons. But if compared to good irons that fit OK, then not really...

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#9 dlygrisse

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 10:25 AM

Profound?  NO..  Maaaaybe a slight psychological edge for a few rounds or a shot here or there....

...and what exactly are the absolute best irons?  Are you trying to justify spending money on PXG's?  :)

The best best advice I ever received on this site regarding irons is, "If you hit your current irons well, and they are a reasonable fit for you, new irons are not going to improve your score.  But, sometimes we just want shiny new things"  And if you have the disposable income to justify it, then why not?
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#10 NoTalentLefty

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 11:02 AM

Lessons are the best way unless you’re playing starter set junk. Then upgrade and then take lessons.

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#11 brew4eagle

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 11:15 AM

Irons don't make much of a difference at all, at least if you're a reasonable ball striker.  If you hit it all over the face, then a set of PING Gs or similar may help a tad.
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#12 North Butte

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 11:54 AM

Not if "profound" means you play an entirely different level of golf. Different clubs that fit your swing better or suit your eye better or just plain old honeymoon effect could easily improve your scores by a stroke or two.

But if a 13-handicap shooting 85's and 86's were to make a change and start shooting 83's and 84's, playing to an 11 maybe? That's hardly a profound difference. Especially given that many such immediate improvements tend to wear off after a few weeks or months.

The most "profound" difference I ever saw was 15 years ago when the last holdout in my usual group finally got rid of his early-'90's vintage 140cc steel driver in favor of a big-headed, hot-faced Titanium one. Overnight he went from hitting it 180-190 and missing 4 or 5 fairways a round to hitting it 210 or so and being straight down the middle every time. It was amazing.

His handicap dropped from 12 (where it had been for years) to 10. And that was a bigger change than any set of irons is likely to produce.
Everything has its drawbacks, as the man said when his mother-in-law died, and they came down upon him for the funeral expenses.

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#13 starrman77

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 11:59 AM

I have 3 sets of Ping irons, i3OS, G10 and G30. I shoot about the same score with each set, so no, it doesn't make a difference with me.
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#14 sdandrea

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 12:03 PM

"absolutely the best irons" are the ones that fit you best and you play your best golf with.  They might be a $100 set of PING Eye 2s or a $3000 set of PXGs.  You can do like me and many WXRers and ho your way through the journey to find them (and then sell them anyway, and then wish you hadn't), or just get fitted and buy a set and learn to play them.  Your call!

Edited by sdandrea, 10 August 2018 - 12:04 PM.

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#15 moko jumby

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 12:25 PM

No, unless your current irons are particularly ill-fitted or 20+ years old, you won't see a "profound" difference


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#16 Stuart G.

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 12:37 PM

View PostUnder2hours, on 10 August 2018 - 07:53 AM, said:

Now I do realize that if if properly measured and fitted, maybe that would make a difference, but the question is whether a new set of irons (off the rack) if price no object (okay $800 ceiling) would make any difference at all.

Only way to find out is to roll the dice (w/o getting an actual fitting).

The speedblades are very forgiving so the big potential issue that might make a difference is whether the shafts in another set would be a better fit or not.  And considering the wide variety of stock shafts out there, it could be just as hit or miss as it was when you picked the speedblades.  And that potential is assuming you have a certain level of sensitivity to different feels from different shafts. Some people can hit a wide range of shafts with no change in the results - others are very sensitive and can get messed up if the shaft specs are just a little off.   Most are somewhere between those two extremes and the difference might be noticable but profound?  difficult to predict.

If the stock lie angle or playing length or even swing weight is a poor fit for you now, that likely wont change significantly in any new off-the-shelf stock set.   Those factors would require a fitting to address.

Some of the newer heads available have improved the COR so it's possible you might gain a few MPH of ball speed.  But I wouldn't consider that profound and it also doesn't mean they will necessarily be much more forgiving.

The main concern I might have for those speedblades is that the stock steel shaft is very light and shaft weight can play an important part in the consistency of your swing and the results.  But w/o knowing anything about your swing, it's impossible to say whether you might improve with a bit more shaft weight (or how much).   That takes some trial and error testing to really figure out (e.g. which is what a fitting really is).  But it's also something you could do yourself w/o going to a fitter with a little range time and some lead tape (if you had a mind to).

It's really the same as with any other club.   The driver adds a few more important specs - and the misses can be more severe because it is a longer club (both in playing length and distance) but it's really not all that different.

Edited by Stuart G., 10 August 2018 - 12:48 PM.


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#17 Under2hours

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 02:13 PM

View PostStuart G., on 10 August 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

View PostUnder2hours, on 10 August 2018 - 07:53 AM, said:

Now I do realize that if if properly measured and fitted, maybe that would make a difference, but the question is whether a new set of irons (off the rack) if price no object (okay $800 ceiling) would make any difference at all.

Only way to find out is to roll the dice (w/o getting an actual fitting).

The speedblades are very forgiving so the big potential issue that might make a difference is whether the shafts in another set would be a better fit or not.  And considering the wide variety of stock shafts out there, it could be just as hit or miss as it was when you picked the speedblades.  And that potential is assuming you have a certain level of sensitivity to different feels from different shafts. Some people can hit a wide range of shafts with no change in the results - others are very sensitive and can get messed up if the shaft specs are just a little off.   Most are somewhere between those two extremes and the difference might be noticable but profound?  difficult to predict.

If the stock lie angle or playing length or even swing weight is a poor fit for you now, that likely wont change significantly in any new off-the-shelf stock set.   Those factors would require a fitting to address.

Some of the newer heads available have improved the COR so it's possible you might gain a few MPH of ball speed.  But I wouldn't consider that profound and it also doesn't mean they will necessarily be much more forgiving.

The main concern I might have for those speedblades is that the stock steel shaft is very light and shaft weight can play an important part in the consistency of your swing and the results.  But w/o knowing anything about your swing, it's impossible to say whether you might improve with a bit more shaft weight (or how much).   That takes some trial and error testing to really figure out (e.g. which is what a fitting really is).  But it's also something you could do yourself w/o going to a fitter with a little range time and some lead tape (if you had a mind to).

It's really the same as with any other club.   The driver adds a few more important specs - and the misses can be more severe because it is a longer club (both in playing length and distance) but it's really not all that different.

View PostStuart G., on 10 August 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

View PostUnder2hours, on 10 August 2018 - 07:53 AM, said:

Now I do realize that if if properly measured and fitted, maybe that would make a difference, but the question is whether a new set of irons (off the rack) if price no object (okay $800 ceiling) would make any difference at all.

Only way to find out is to roll the dice (w/o getting an actual fitting).

The speedblades are very forgiving so the big potential issue that might make a difference is whether the shafts in another set would be a better fit or not.  And considering the wide variety of stock shafts out there, it could be just as hit or miss as it was when you picked the speedblades.  And that potential is assuming you have a certain level of sensitivity to different feels from different shafts. Some people can hit a wide range of shafts with no change in the results - others are very sensitive and can get messed up if the shaft specs are just a little off.   Most are somewhere between those two extremes and the difference might be noticable but profound?  difficult to predict.

If the stock lie angle or playing length or even swing weight is a poor fit for you now, that likely wont change significantly in any new off-the-shelf stock set.   Those factors would require a fitting to address.

Some of the newer heads available have improved the COR so it's possible you might gain a few MPH of ball speed.  But I wouldn't consider that profound and it also doesn't mean they will necessarily be much more forgiving.

The main concern I might have for those speedblades is that the stock steel shaft is very light and shaft weight can play an important part in the consistency of your swing and the results.  But w/o knowing anything about your swing, it's impossible to say whether you might improve with a bit more shaft weight (or how much).   That takes some trial and error testing to really figure out (e.g. which is what a fitting really is).  But it's also something you could do yourself w/o going to a fitter with a little range time and some lead tape (if you had a mind to).

It's really the same as with any other club.   The driver adds a few more important specs - and the misses can be more severe because it is a longer club (both in playing length and distance) but it's really not all that different.

Thanks, a fitting maybe in my future.  Very simply I hit it short, slowish swing speed and a very simple swing.

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#18 Mudguard

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 02:55 PM

View Postmoko jumby, on 10 August 2018 - 12:25 PM, said:

No, unless your current irons are particularly ill-fitted or 20+ years old, you won't see a "profound" difference
Ha, when I was 15 or 16 in the mid nineties, I was using Spalding Tour Edition blades, my father and brother both got Titleist DCIs, Dad with S300 and my brother's may have been X100s, (I think Dads were the TriSpec or whatever the equivalent was). I took Dad's out one afternoon, never gave them back! In fact I used them for about 10 years.
I think possibly the only thing that stops them from being a viable modern option was the super thin and numerous grooves.

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#19 CaddiesFault

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 04:48 PM

The absolute best irons for your swing can make a profound difference. They may not be the most expensive, or most used on tour, if that's what you mean.

Get a fitting. Having the proper length/loft/lie is very important. Getting the proper shaft is just as important, and maybe more. They are both more important than the manufacturer of the clubhead.

Good luck!
Callaway

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#20 Double Dutch

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 04:51 PM

The right irons can make a big difference IF youíre currently playing very thin-soled irons on soggy grass and hit a lot of fat shots, or if youíre a slow swinger and lighter clubs with low and back cog can help you get the ball airborne. Otherwise, itís mostly a confidence thing.

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#21 leopoldstotch

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 05:20 PM

Compare the absolute best irons and then be capped off at $800 off the rack selections?
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#22 boggyman

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Posted 10 August 2018 - 05:28 PM

The 2nd and 3rd sentences in the OG post say it all. Stick to your guns and work on and around the green. Spend the $800 on  something else,  like new wedges and get to practicing.

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#23 bluedot

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Posted 11 August 2018 - 07:41 AM

The answer depends on two variables:

1. What do you mean by "profound"?  I play a lot of golf, and play as much tournament golf as I possibly can.  I obsess over golf, practice a lot, and so on.  A shot or two per round FOR me is "profound"; I realize that may not be the case for many.

2. How poorly fitted was the previous set of irons?

FWIW, I think there is a huge misunderstanding, even by better golfers of what happens when you use "better" irons.  Your best rounds don't necessarily get better, and your index may not change, and your very worst shots might not get any better.  But if your average miss gets a yard or two better, and three or four times a round you are on the green instead of in the fringe, or in the fringe instead of in the rough, or in the rough instead of in the water; then you are benefiting, and maybe without even realizing it.  It's much more subtle than a driver that you hit 10 yards farther, but it's just as important.

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#24 jasonp87

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Posted 11 August 2018 - 08:14 AM

If you're not goinf to get fit then your wasting your cash. If you are going to get fit then it can be very profound.

Buying off the rack is hit or miss ans a gamble.  If your current off the rack is a poor fit and coincidentally the new one is better then sure it may help. But u could buy something thats not an improvement or even more ill fit.

Hence get fit.
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#25 vanillafunk616

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Posted 11 August 2018 - 09:27 AM

I feel like the wording of this question is trying to lead to getting the answers you want to hear.  I do think that people have unrealistic expectations for what a club can do for you.  That being said poorly fit clubs are going to make the game more brutal than it has to be.  Clubs that are fit to you are going to allow you to play up to your skill level.  

It's like a poor fitting pair of running shoes.  The right shoes aren't going to make you as fast as Usain Bolt, so much as poorly fit shoes are going to take away from your ability to run efficiently.


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#26 Stuart G.

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Posted 12 August 2018 - 03:42 AM

View PostUnder2hours, on 10 August 2018 - 02:13 PM, said:

Thanks, a fitting maybe in my future.  Very simply I hit it short, slowish swing speed and a very simple swing.

Well it's not just about swing speed and you never know for sure until you try other options - but the lighter weight is less likely to be problematic for slower (and less aggressive) swings.

You could always take a mid-iron, get some lead tape and try adding 10-15 gm wrapped around the shaft a few inches below the grip and see how that feels in comparison (hitting balls on the range).

Edited by Stuart G., 12 August 2018 - 03:44 AM.


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#27 pinestreetgolf

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Posted 12 August 2018 - 07:53 AM

View PostUnder2hours, on 10 August 2018 - 07:53 AM, said:

I debate this over and over.  Have Speedblades and since playing a lot, playing the best golf I ever had.  Bad hits are my fault plain and simple.

Now I do realize that if if properly measured and fitted, maybe that would make a difference, but the question is whether a new set of irons (off the rack) if price no object (okay $800 ceiling) would make any difference at all.

Conversely I do think Drivers (and having a fairly new one) is important and less so for fairway woods & hybrids.

Am I wrong in this thought process?

Depends on your definition of profound.  If its five strokes a round, probably not.  But a half stroke to a stroke round, decent chance.
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#28 Davidv

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Posted 12 August 2018 - 08:26 AM

Buying the newest irons and drivers for me is one of the fun parts of the game. Chasing that elusive magic set of irons or driver. I know lessons, practice, fitting, etc. is the realistic path to improvement but I prefer the magical elusive chase.

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#29 Atrayn

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Posted 12 August 2018 - 09:18 AM

No chance. Properly fitted will make the most difference. Regarding blades, they could hurt most people especially if you are not playing all the time and have a dime sized wear pattern in the face.

I purchased a used set of 30 year old Hogan Redlines and kept them in the bag for a while however went to Cobra Amp forged just because I hit them a 1/2 club longer and due to the perimeter weighting, brought my dispersion tighter because I just don't have the time to practice or play every day to maintain the quality of strike needed ESPECIALLY in the long irons. I could work the ball better with the blades, but again that takes a lot of time hitting a lot of balls.
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#30 pinestreetgolf

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Posted 12 August 2018 - 10:08 PM

View PostAtrayn, on 12 August 2018 - 09:18 AM, said:

No chance. Properly fitted will make the most difference. Regarding blades, they could hurt most people especially if you are not playing all the time and have a dime sized wear pattern in the face.

I purchased a used set of 30 year old Hogan Redlines and kept them in the bag for a while however went to Cobra Amp forged just because I hit them a 1/2 club longer and due to the perimeter weighting, brought my dispersion tighter because I just don't have the time to practice or play every day to maintain the quality of strike needed ESPECIALLY in the long irons. I could work the ball better with the blades, but again that takes a lot of time hitting a lot of balls.

Pretty good point.  I've got a buddy who has an odd swing because he played college baseball.  He can't help but throw his weight toward the ball on the downswing, like he's trying to push the ball to right field.

He got his clubs bent way upright and his sweeping draws on almost every shot now, where before he pushed everything.

For some (some!) getting the right fit can be almost like magic.  I know everyone in this thread is yelling "Practice!" but i feel (right or wrong) that the PM grind was as good as a year a couple times a week around the short game area with a non-PM.  That wedge feels like cheating.

aeroburner tp 9.5* diamana blue 53 x-flex
rescue dual 14* 19* burner 23* tour blue 65 x-flex
j40 5-pw s300
sm6 50* 55* sm5 60* s300

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