And how much heavier, if any, is a hickory driver over a vintage steel driver?
This is an interesting question that I have thought about recently myself. I am assuming my hickory tee club is heavier by a small amount. I googled weights of persimmon drivers in steel and they came in around 13 oz. I weighed my hickory spoon/driver at 13.6 oz. So my hickory tee club at least weighs a little more. So I'm thinking you'd swing the steel persimmon a bit faster, but probably nothing dramatic. Anecdotally, not based on a laser or trackman or anything, just me pacing my yardages, I feel my hickory drives are in the 215-220 range, and my Toski steel shafted persimmon is 230-235 on a good strike. I am talking about a center face strike, not an average. I also think that conditions make a much bigger difference in hickory and vintage driving than with titanium, in which distance is produced in the air, not the ground. I have played rounds like you recently experienced where conditions aren't ideal for hickory and it can mess with your mind a little. "I have to be hitting it farther than 180, what's wrong here?" Then you start pressing and things can really go south. It seems you adjusted nicely Kevin, in your first forays with your hickory bag. We have to remember that we have something to compare all this with, back in the 20's courses were shorter and set up for hickory because that's all there was. You didn't have to worry about what tees to play or distances or conditions. Everybody played the same stuff and probably the same length. We have to filter all this information and make decisions accordingly. Courses can be 7000 plus these days, playing from 5900 at first can seem weird. That was one of the best things about Mid Pines in that I felt, not only was the course ideal for hickory, but the set up was super. Used every club in my bag, well I gues that's not so hard when one only has 9 clubs, but such a wide variety of shots. That's why hickory is the best golf there is IMHO. Creative, challenging, and fun, that's a great combo, plus all my clubs are older than me, and something about that appeals to me, lol.