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Anyone use a 3-wood instead of driver?


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#1 Sean2

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 05:45 AM

If so, what has been your results?

I played 18 yesterday. With driver on the front nine (mid tees) I shot a 44, using a 5-wood to tee off on back nine (back tees) I shot a 41.

Hey...be nice.

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#2 larrybud

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 07:27 AM

I've bagged my driver for a month in the past when I haven't been hitting it well, and just used my 4 wood.  At the time, since I was so wild with the driver, my scores went DOWN because I was in play almost all the time.

Now, my driving is 100% better, I rarely spray it, and I'm playing longer courses, so it would probably hurt me to NEVER hit a driver.  That said, I pick and choose the battles.

#3 Turbs

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 07:46 AM

I play my titleist 15* 3 wood when something is on the line, if its just another game at the club its driver all day. Having said that if I'm not swinging well it wont matter whats in my hands..... I've had career best with both in play, but its realy about focusing on the task at hand!

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#4 topeagle

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 07:50 AM

I assume you did better with your 3wood due to accuracy. If you mean that you hit your 3wood farther, that is a different story altogether!

I "bagged" my driver for almost two years and even stopped carrying it, using ONLY my 3wood or 5wood to tee off with. I was fighting a wicked slice. I kept getting in trouble off the tee. Every hole with driver was the same. Hit LONG (many over 300 yards) but sprayed everywhere. Second shot was always the beginning of scrambling. Hard to score that way. I always heard that if you have a decent approach game and short game (not spectacular but not bad either), then if you can drive the ball at least 220 yards and NOT be in trouble you can break 90 on most courses. That proved true for me. Keeping the ball OUT OF TROUBLE definitely lowers your score to a point.

A year ago, my son got me the Medicus hinged driver and it cured my slice in 15 minutes! It is not for everyone though. If you can take the club back slow, on a single plane and then return on a single plane or slightly below the swing plane, then the Medicus works great. It does not work for all swings, but definitely teaches you that one. MY son hits long and straight but has a quick tempo and cannot use the Medicus. We decided to leave well eneough alone and not mess with his swing. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

Anyway, my driver made a triumphant return and I am now know for hitting long and straight.However, on any given day, I will start rushing (or a miriad of other things), my driver will start getting shakey, and when it does, it stays in the bag and I use a 3wood or 5wood to drive with.

Always remember; on any given shot, hit the right club for distance unless you can't control it, and if you can't, back down to the longest club you can control. Work out issues at the driving range, not on the course. That definately saves strokes! However, ego being what is is, makes it hard to do that!

#5 8thehardway

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 11:11 AM

I don't understand such logic. More R&D goes into drivers and the head is bigger and more forgiving. The only physical problem I can see is that the driver has a longer shaft, easily countered by gripping down to achieve a 3- or 5-wood length.

Psychologically, you probably won't try killing a gripped-down driver when you know lowering your hands 3 or 4 inches will cost 20 yards or so and thinking of a gripped-down driver as a 3 wood or 5 wood makes it easy to get a good tempo.

Another plus - if you can't hit a 3 wood off the fairway it frees up space for another club.


#6 Hathstauwk

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 11:15 AM

yes, I use my 3-wood if a driver will go too far (dog leg or lake/other hazard crossing fairway). Will also use off the tee when I really need to rope a hook around a corner.

I also use my 3-wood instead of driver off the deck for a long approach (generally only on par 5s as most par 4s I am hitting mid iron or less in)
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#7 vhawk12

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 12:45 PM

I just bought a TEE CB2 4W from someone on here and I'm thinking about bagging my driver...like a previous poster said, I am also long (up to 340 if I hit it straight, average around 300-310, dry climate, hard fairways), but I've been fighting a slice that starts straight and then just tails off at the end to where I'm in trouble on my second shot...now I know it's a swing thing, but the 16.5 loft on that 4W and I hit it straight nearly every time.  I actually hit one 328 the other day (no BS, we GPS'd it) so if I can even be close to 300, but on the fairway with the 4W, maybe I should look at a TEE XCG or CB2 3W and forget the driver all together.  It's tempting to say the least!

#8 Sean2

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Posted 08 August 2008 - 06:35 PM

View Postvhawk12, on Aug 8 2008, 01:45 PM, said:

I just bought a TEE CB2 4W from someone on here and I'm thinking about bagging my driver...like a previous poster said, I am also long (up to 340 if I hit it straight, average around 300-310, dry climate, hard fairways), but I've been fighting a slice that starts straight and then just tails off at the end to where I'm in trouble on my second shot...now I know it's a swing thing, but the 16.5 loft on that 4W and I hit it straight nearly every time.  I actually hit one 328 the other day (no BS, we GPS'd it) so if I can even be close to 300, but on the fairway with the 4W, maybe I should look at a TEE XCG or CB2 3W and forget the driver all together.  It's tempting to say the least!
Doesn't sound like you need a driver. :-)
Hey...be nice.

#9 vhawk12

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 02:10 PM

View PostAvatar, on Aug 8 2008, 05:35 PM, said:

View Postvhawk12, on Aug 8 2008, 01:45 PM, said:

I just bought a TEE CB2 4W from someone on here and I'm thinking about bagging my driver...like a previous poster said, I am also long (up to 340 if I hit it straight, average around 300-310, dry climate, hard fairways), but I've been fighting a slice that starts straight and then just tails off at the end to where I'm in trouble on my second shot...now I know it's a swing thing, but the 16.5 loft on that 4W and I hit it straight nearly every time. I actually hit one 328 the other day (no BS, we GPS'd it) so if I can even be close to 300, but on the fairway with the 4W, maybe I should look at a TEE XCG or CB2 3W and forget the driver all together. It's tempting to say the least!
Doesn't sound like you need a driver. :-)


This is what I'm thinking...those TEE fairways are amazing!

#10 jjj912

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 02:22 PM

I've think about using just a 3 wood instead of a driver all the time.  Yet everytime I go to the course I put the driver in the bag instead of leaving it in the car and on the first tee I pull out the driver instead of leaving it in the bag and taking out the 3 wood.  I figure I drop at least 6 shots a round due to poor driving that either forces to me to have to chip out of the woods onto the fairway or have to take a penalty shot due to hitting the ball into the water.  It seems like everytime I tee it up I think that this is the day I've got that slice under control.  Sadly, it never is.


View Post8thehardway, on Aug 8 2008, 12:11 PM, said:

I don't understand such logic. More R&D goes into drivers and the head is bigger and more forgiving. The only physical problem I can see is that the driver has a longer shaft, easily countered by gripping down to achieve a 3- or 5-wood length.
...

Part of me thinks that the 460 cc heads make it harder to get the face square at impact.


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#11 xan_user

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 03:03 PM

Struggled all spring trying to adapt to a 460cc driver, so I left it out and got a nike square 4 wood 17*. My fairway stats are way up and my toal score is down.

I did pull driver once today though and carried it 280 (far for me) and straight, I think the 4 wood summer regime helped me figure out a better driver swing.
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#12 GaijinGolfer

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 03:39 PM

I hit my 3-wood just as far as I do my driver because the ball carries farther with the 3-wood.  I also find the 3-wood easier to control because the shaft is shorter.
If its a hole with a nice, wide fairway I will take a rip at it with the driver, but if I need accuracy, its 3-wood or the 21* hybrid every time.

#13 ezra76

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Posted 13 August 2008 - 11:50 PM

I hit 2/4 farways with 3w (2missed were by a foot combined) and drove a downhill par 4 green. With driver I hit 3/10, one OB left and another that hit the fairway bounced back in off a tree. The OB was really bad luck, hit a sideslope with a cut, landing in fairway but somehow kicked left over the ledge and down an embankment. It's good to look at this, I don't really keep track of the stats but it's obvious I need to use driver less often.

#14 TEConnor

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 07:01 AM

If you objectively and strategically play every hole backwards, a good percentage of tee shots should be hit with a club other than the driver.  It depends heavily on the course, but for the majority of tracks that I play in the mid-atlantic I have to hit something other than driver.  It's not because I don't hit driver accurately, I do that fine.  It's because driver brings trouble into play that I don't have to bring into play in order to reach a green with a scoring club.  

Take your typical 425 yard dogleg par 4.  In my area, every course has at least two of these tree-lined holes from the tips with a moderate to severe dog leg at around 250 - 275 yards.  Usually there is a particular zone, somewhere around 260 - 270 yards from the tee, usually on the side opposite the dogleg that you must place your ball into.  For some, this is perfect driver length.  For me, I would have to hit a knock-down or chip driver into this spot...which under pressure I tend to screw up and guide.  Hence, IF I simply rip a 3-wood my ideal shot lands right in the target zone and sits down right next to its ball mark.  Granted, I might have attempted to hit a cut or a drawn driver around the bend (or maybe flown a tree on a corner), but more often than not, the risk and reward do not match up.  If I hit the hard shaped driver and it ends up going straight, well that's death.  If I shape it too much, that's further trouble.  If I double cross, well that's an X.  

On the final hole of a tourney last week I did the opposite of what I'm preaching above.  I had a 420 yard dogleg left hole with a wide open landing zone at 260 yards off the tee.  Trouble started at 270 straight away.  There was a corner that could be cut easily, but you had to hit a hard draw with a driver.  I was striping the driver all day.  I was feeling cocky (was one under going into 18) and really confident that I could hit the shot.  I did all the proper setup and routines to hit the proper shot.  Then my mind said, "don't over draw this...that's trouble."  Instead of stepping off and re-thinking the shot, I went ahead.  I made a protective swing against the big hook, and hit is dead straight down the left side of the fairway.  Flew into the right rough and scooted behind a huge tree.  A punch out backwards and a couple shots later, I'm the alternate instead of the qualifier.  If I had simply played the 3-wood to the target zone I'd be out practicing today preparing for a national amateur instead of hoping some guy gets a last minute business trip and has to withdraw so I can go...

Cheers,
Tim

#15 againstthegrain

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 07:38 AM

Bought a new driver about 6 weeks ago(FTi w xcon6) which for some reason I want to hit harder than normal.  My shoulders take over and it's a disaster.  I can get it working pre-round after about 20 balls but have ZERO confidence that I will make a good swing, so I've been playing a Sonartec 17* HB 001 and it's money.  I think I need to convince myself that the FT-i is a 9.5* hybrid and all will be well.


#16 Edetc

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 07:52 AM

I do not use a 3 wood on the fairway, that is why I have chosen a 2nd driver : Adams Insight BUL 15*

Long and straight ...

#17 trapsmv15

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 12:33 PM

12.5* driver that's only 42.5 inches long... Works for me! As technique improves, I'd like to get a stiff shaft in there at 44 to drop some spin... We'll see.
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#18 raidernut1234

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 01:12 PM

I have similar results with myCB2 3 wood 15*.  I conistently hit it 10-20yds shorter than my driver, but when I bust it I have outdriven my playing partners (280-290 carry and roll).  Would love to get ahold of an X-quad shaft for my driver!!! so yes,under pressure on tight holes, I now hit the three wood so I have a better chance of being in play.
thinking about a 13*.

#19 trevintheFL

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Posted 14 August 2008 - 07:30 PM

Since I purchased my Burner 3w, my driver only comes out maybe 4x in a round :russian_roulette:.

#20 cloudlx

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 11:41 AM

All the time, the driver comes out occasionally, but not nearly as much as it used to.


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#21 jjj912

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Posted 02 September 2008 - 12:50 PM

Played without my driver the other day and used three a three wood off the tee instead.  I was quite pleased with the results as I set a personal best score for nine holes.  

I thought I would be hurting for distance since I played from 6600 yards and I max out at around 220 with a three wood.  That fear proved to be unfounded because on several holes I was hitting from the same spot as I would have been if I had hit the driver.  What I find really telling is that I usually play from 5800 yards, not 6600.  I knew my slice with the driver was eating into the distance but I didn't realize it was that bad.  There were a couple holes where I was 20 to 30 yards further back than where I normally am, but that's not bad considering I was playing from 6600 instead of 5800 yards.

Playing with the three wood really put a finger on just how poorly I was hitting the driver.  With the three wood I was able to keep the ball in the fairway instead of slicing it into the woods and having to chip out.  It was so nice to just be able to swing a away and watch the ball go soaring straight ahead and land in the center of the fairway.  With the driver, when I just swing away the ball goes soaring straight into the woods.

Thinking about it some more, what really made the three wood experiment work is the improvement in my iron game.  I've been taking lessons and my ability to hit my irons is much better than what it was a few months ago.  So much so that my new favorite club is my 5i instead of my PW.  Even my 3i is starting to get some love nowadays.

#22 raymo

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Posted 03 September 2008 - 07:56 PM

I agree with larrybud. You need to pick and choose which hole you absolutely need the driver to score and avoid hitting it on holes where there is trouble all over. So far this season my lowest round was on my home course where I only hit driver twice. The second time actually got me in trouble as I was just off the fairway in a gopher hole.

On most courses I play it is more important to be in play off the tee. I think someone else mentioned playing the hole backwards and that is HUGE for me. You can really map out your strategy using this technique.

#23 avrag

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 03:21 AM

As somebody else already posted: plan the hole backwards. For me, that equates to: Driver on reachable par 5s and on long (430+ yds) par 4s, if they have a reasonably wide fairway. Everything else: 3wood, my trusty 16*hybrid, or 4iron. If I stick to that game plan, I play my best rounds. If I get too excited and start hitting the driver on the holes where it doesn't make sense, I usually get punished.

Edited by avrag, 04 September 2008 - 03:22 AM.

I see a gap. There definitely is a gap.

#24 mdouet

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 10:28 AM

I've heard the expression "plan the hole backwards" before, but not sure what it means.  Do you mean, pick out what club you want to use for your approach shot, then use the remaining distance to determine what club to use off the tee?

#25 VinceRKG

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 10:42 AM

I have been using a 3 wood for my past 5 rounds. I have been in a funk with my driver. I hit the fww all day long, and get some good distance out of it as well. The long par 5's though have been par everytime though. Can never hit 3 wood off tee box and then hit off fww to get on it two. But if you want to feel good and know you can hit the fww, 3 wood it the way to go.


#26 abewley

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 11:04 AM

my course is full of doglegs and trouble at 260-270 marks..

when i play with my regular group we play the signs ( one step from the tips) and i only hit driver 3-4 holes.. the rest i hit 3wd..   which off the tee goes about 240-250

#27 jjj912

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Posted 04 September 2008 - 12:29 PM

View Postmdouet, on Sep 4 2008, 11:28 AM, said:

I've heard the expression "plan the hole backwards" before, but not sure what it means.  Do you mean, pick out what club you want to use for your approach shot, then use the remaining distance to determine what club to use off the tee?

Exactly.  It's a game management plan.  Figure out what yardages you can reliably hit and from the tee hit clubs that will leave you that many yards out.  For example, if you can reliably hit a 7i 150 yards  and the hole is 380 yards, off the tee you would hit a club that would go 230 yards so you that you are at 150 yards out for your approach shot.  You wouldn't bomb a drive 300 yards because then you have to hit a partial wedge for 80 yards.  While you could do that, it probably isn't as consistent as the full swing 7i.

Edited by jjj912, 04 September 2008 - 12:30 PM.





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