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Paderson Shafts: Entering the market ‘with a sledgehammer’

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Paderson Shafts has stepped out from “behind the beaded curtain,” in the words of CEO Jason Horodezky. The company has shifted its focus from OEM contract manufacturing to private label manufacturing.

Paderson was the company that developed shaft technology for Original ADAMS Golf Tight Lies and Orlimar Trimetal woods, as well as Rapport composites.

The company’s Kinetixx shafts feature breakthrough technology, according to the company, which compelled Paderson to hang a shingle and build a network of dealers, fitters and retail establishments to sells its wares.

Paderson specializes in carbon fiber and high and low modulus FRP Composites, resin matrix formulation and core process technologies.

The company presently offers four driver shafts: Kinetixx IMRT Green, Kinetixx IMRT Blue, Kinetixx VMT Vacuum Cured, Kinetiix IMRT Limited Edition. The Green and Blue shafts are available for woods and hybrids, as well as irons.

I spoke with CEO Jason Horodezky about company history, the shaft market, key technologies and Paderson’s product line.

g7od1l_padd011-min

Tell me about the decision to get into the crowded and competitive shaft space…

It’s a very convoluted and crowded marketplace. It looks a lot like it did in the 90s…between ‘96 and ‘99, except the volume-quantity turnover in the segment isn’t the same. There aren’t as many home builders as there were. We’ve been in the game the longest of almost anybody. We’ve been behind the beaded curtain. So we’re not new: we’re new to the consumer.

We’ve made a few significant breakthroughs, and we decided it was time to make our brand known, because we’ve been doing it for other people for so long.

We were the power behind two brands: a company called Rapport Composites, and they then spunoff into a company called Swing Science. So we’re coming into the market with a sledge hammer.

Why come out from behind the “beaded curtain” now?

The industry is stagnant in a lot of areas.

At the end of the day, honesty and integrity coupled with the transparent technology (the world’s only visible fiber technology)…was conducive to telling the world of golf…our story.

There’s a lot of people who have exploited us for their own gain, but not for ours, so to speak.

What is your take on the shaft market? It’s a convoluted space, as you indicated…

What we have is cutting edge. We have the only array of iron shafts in the world with true, concentric, spineless technology. We tailor it on three orders of measure; very high order of magnitude stuff. The science we use to model our products is extremely noble. Our methods and manufacturing enable us to do a lot of extraordinary things that other have tried and failed miserably and continuously with.

For instance, you hear people talk about xylon and liquid crystal polymers. It has a very high density and no modulus, therefore they don’t get the order of magnitude and the effect, and this becomes a very heavy weighted composite.

So from our perspective, we’re actually tailoring it to tension, damping, high-order resonance with impedance (and recovery in the shaft), and that’s on the merits of our wound platform, which is unlike any other in the world.

vawpw2_padd044-min

Tell me more about Paderson’s key technologies.

We had in excess of 50 permutations when we started in our R&D room. We reduced the lineup to be tailored to the commercial exploit. So, we have three construction platforms, and those get reduced per category segment.

Unlike any other shaft company, we provide three different constructions, because there isn’t a one-size-fits-all golf shaft. One of our three shafts will fit everybody. In essence, how you make something will determine what materials you use. Construction is the confluence of craftsmanship and materials. That’s why we’ve put into practice a couple of different materials no one else has.

Our flagship is that we’ve patented processes for wound technology. We’re the foremost leader in tension fiber structures: structural architecture that you can see. Think of a tennis racket with a pre-tension net head. You can see and feel the tension in our shafts. We have a pre-loaded shaft. It’s pre-loaded to respond to a golfer’s swing, and it’s visible in two of our three shafts.

Fitted with our shafts, golfers will see ball speed increase. When they start searching for things that are spin related and launch, it gets to be a different golfer speak phenomenon. Our shafts are designed to [increase speed].

Wound technology is the baseline of what we do. It’s because of wound technology that we have our vacuum curing system, and that benefits our laminated, cable-rolled structures.

And we’re transparent. We’re not making claims and hiding things under paint. You can see everything that we’re made of: visible technology.

Tell me about Paderson’s shaft offerings.

Each of our constructions separates themselves based on who they’re for. Our wound series, the Kevlar Green, fits every golfer. Our green table rolled vacuum cured amorphous is very similar, but it’s more tailored to someone who is flat/positive attack angle and is looking for a lighter weight alternative.

Our Kevlar Blue is tailored around someone who is smooth in transition but has a negative to flat attack angle. We’ve tailored all of the product line around a golfer’s swing and particularly arc and speed. So the length of someone’s arc and where they’re fastest: that’s the fitting paradigm from which we tailored our product.

So again, our Kevlar Green is capable of fitting all golfers, but golfers who may be looking for a lighter weight alternative would benefit from our table rolled component.

The wound series is available through the bag. There’s nothing that outperforms it; that’s why we reduced our line. We have three constructions in driver, two in fairways, and the reason for that is performance.

8e9qhv_padd032-min

Going forward, are you more focused on relationships with OEMs? A tour presence? Appealing to clubmakers?

Our focus is on getting to the end user in the most efficient manner possible. And there are two forms of growth in the industry right now. You’ve got new retail, which is like the PGA Superstore. And then you’ve got the bespoken category.

We’re building that relationship with the dealer networks—they’re critical. But we really just want to get to the end consumer with the best technology and price relationship. Our paradigm there is incomparable. We have the world’s only polymer shaft, but we don’t charge $1000 for our shafts. Our shaft is the most expensive by way of materials and process of any golf shaft in the world. Yet because we are designing and making all organically, we don’t exploit consumer weakness or this “deep pocket opportunity.” That’s not our objective. We present unique, technical value propositions.

That all relates to where we go into the market. Some of the bespoken guys want the $500 shaft opportunity or a make-up program. There’s no real reason for a shaft to be $300 and installed at $500, but it helps them with their margins.

But consumers love our product. We have a 97 percent success rate in fitting golfers at arm’s length, and in the field it’s 100 percent. We’ll outperform anything that they have in our green grass demo events.

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14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. BOB

    Sep 11, 2015 at 7:39 pm

    I HAVE LOOKED AT THEIR WEBSITE AND HAVE READ ALL THEIR COMMENTS . I AM WILLING TO TRY ONE OF THEIR SHAFTS AND MAKE MY JUDGEMENT FROM HOW IT PERFORMS FOR ME AND MY CUSTOMERS. I AGREE THAT THERE IS TOO MUCH TECHNICAL JARGON IN THE ARTICLE BRING IT ALL DOWN TO WHERE THE LAYMAN CAN UNDERSTAND ABOUT THE SHAFTS.
    I WILL POST ANOTHER COMMENT AFTER I RECEIVE MY SHAFT AND HAVE TRIED ITS PERFORMANCE FOR MYSELF.

  2. myron miller

    Aug 26, 2015 at 6:04 pm

    From this article, I have no clue if these shafts would work for my game or not. I really didn’t understand the verbiage. Non-standard shaft terminology doesn’t help us end-users. Where’s the kick point? What are the flexes at head, butt, middle?

    According to the website, the torque is not what I’d call low torque by any means. 5.7 to 5.9 is not low torque when lots of shafts are available with 3.5 or even lower. Fujikura has them down to 2.8 and most are 3.5 or less. I thought advanced tech made torque lower not higher.

  3. Allen

    Aug 16, 2015 at 9:51 pm

    I would love to try these, but at almost $90 a shaft for the irons, I am not sure I can justify the money. I cant believe they will give me $90 worth of improvement, or very much improvement.

  4. other paul

    Aug 16, 2015 at 9:44 pm

    Sounds like the steel fiber shafts to me… Aerotech has been around for quite some time.

    • Mac n Cheese

      Aug 26, 2015 at 9:58 am

      If they actually found a way to create a shaft out of woven steel fibers, it could be a potential game changer considered steel fibers would have a stronger resistance to twisting upon impact. Especially if they drop the weight over traditional steel shafts.

  5. KK

    Aug 16, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    Some of the tech sounds great, some of the phrasing seems a bit too much like meaningless rhetoric; e.g. the virtues of showing the carbon structure underneath vs painting over it. It’s like saying your car is better because the hood is made of glass and you can see the engine vs other car companies who don’t have glass hoods.

    • Mac n Cheese

      Aug 26, 2015 at 10:04 am

      The theory is more in line with carbon fiber hoods vs. traditional hoods. Basically with carbon fiber you don’t have to paint over it, and some people like the look of just carbon fiber in general over painted. Also by having some carbon fiber visible it shows that the product is actual carbon fiber instead of taking their word for it. Really the paint scheme or lack there of is an aesthetic marketing campaign to make their shafts look cooler. Which they do. I want green shafts! lol

  6. Mo

    Aug 15, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Some independent reviews would mean a lot.

  7. Tom Duckworth

    Aug 15, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    I must admit he doesn’t talk like a sales department guy. He’s deeply into the construction of his shafts. I found that refreshing.

  8. Tom Duckworth

    Aug 15, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    Very cool reminds me of Eminence Speaker Co. they made speakers for all kinds of guitar amps and PA systems for other people. One of the largest speaker makers in the world. Now they make them under their own name some of the best on the market. It can only be a good thing for Paderson to enter the marketplace. It will be interesting to see how they do.

  9. Matthew

    Aug 15, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    Gotta echo Mark. Less infomercial and more substance.

    • Mac n Cheese

      Aug 26, 2015 at 10:06 am

      Yes, but they found a new method of doing so, as the article pointed out.

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Club Junkie

Club Junkie Reviews: L.A.B. Mezz.1 Max Putter

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L.A.B. Golf pushes the limits of putters and putting to try and help as many golfers as they can make more putts. Lie Angle Balanced putters are different because the face of the putter is always pointed towards your target. We all know L.A.B.’s famous Directed Force 2.1 putter. However, a lot of golfers didn’t like the looks and size of it. So L.A.B. developed the Mezz.1 putter that has a more traditional mallet look that so many golfers use, but with Lie Angle Balanced technology engineered into it. This year, the Mezz.1 Max putter was introduced to make a great putter even better. The Mezz.1 Max is 20-percent larger than the original Mezz.1 and offers more forgiveness and stability.

I have played the Mezz.1 this year and think it is a great putter, so to be honest, I wasn’t that excited to try the Mezz.1 Max at first. That changed pretty quickly once my putter showed up. To start, getting fit for a putter is one of the last things we golfers think about. L.A.B. has a very unique and effective remote fitting process if you cannot get to a fitter in person. You email a short video to them using your current putter and they use their internal genius to get your specs processed. The remote fitting video took me about seven minutes from start to submission.

Once you have your putter specs, you can then order a stock or custom Mezz.1 Max. I went down the custom path of various head colors, alignment aids, shafts, grips, and even a headcover to build my putter. My original Mezz.1 is black, and I wanted to go with some color to change things up and, for whatever reason, the cappuccino color kept grabbing my attention. The cappuccino color online looks more gold, and I was pleasantly surprised that in person the color is more brown and muted than I expected. The color goes well with the matte white Accra shaft and Press II 1.5-degree smooth grip.

Headcovers are now becoming big accessories, and the brown headcover I chose is kind of retro-looking while feeling high quality. Overall, I love the look and my Mezz.1 Max stands out without being too flashy and distracting.

As soon as I got the putter out of the box, I rolled a few putts on the carpet here at the office, not expecting much difference. From the first couple of putts, I could immediately tell something was a little different with this putter. The weight and balance through the stroke is more stable and you get an even better feeling of the putter wanting to keep the face pointed at the target. The other interesting find is that I didn’t even notice the 20-percent larger size that the Mezz.1 Max has over its older sibling. Maybe if I had them both side-by-side I would notice the size difference more, but the Mezz.1 Max on its own looks normal to my eye.

The first putts I hit on the carpet were great feeling and the Mezz.1 Max felt like it wanted to stay on its path regardless of how your hands tried to manipulate it. The same feeling was present on the putting green, and it was far stronger to me than the standard Mezz.1 felt. When you put the Mezz.1 Max on a target, the putter just wants to hit the ball at that target. The other interesting note is that, to me, the new Max has a softer and more solid feel compared to the smaller head. The sound at impact was more muted and had a lower pitch to it, even on mishits. Just like the original, the grooved face puts immediate forward roll on the ball and reduces almost all skipping.

L.A.B. says this Mezz.1 Max is 20-percent more stable, and I don’t think that is just some marketing talk. I have been in this putting funk where I have been making contact on the toe of the putter regularly. This miss has caused me to miss more than a few putts this year, and I hit a few with the new putter as well. Those toe misses still went straight and I wasn’t losing much speed. Those putts left the toe of the putter and either came up just short or just missed my intended line by a small amount. Those misses are a great improvement over the traditional blade that has been my gamer all summer. The biggest problem I had with the original Mezz.1 is that it took me awhile to get used to longer lag putts. This wasn’t the case with the Max, as I felt much more comfortable from long range and was able to get putts closer and reduce the 3-putt chances by a good amount.

Overall, if you’re searching for a new flatstick, the new L.A.B. Golf Mezz.1 Max putter is something to check out. You have a putter that can truly help you make more putts thanks to the Lie Angle Balanced technology, additional forgiveness, and stability.

For more information on my Mezz.1 Max putter review, listen to the Club Junkie podcast, which is available below and on any podcasting service.

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Opinion & Analysis

The Wedge Guy: A Tale of Two Misses

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It seems like I somewhat “touched a nerve” with last week’s post ‘A Defense of Blades’, based on the scoring you all gave my take on that controversial topic.

I do appreciate it when you take the time to score your reaction to my work, as it keeps me tuned in to what you really want me to pontificate about. Before I get into today’s topic, I request that any of you who have a subject you’d like me to address please drop me an email at [email protected], OK?

So, in somewhat of a follow-up to last week, let’s talk today about misses. Those too frequent shots that move your scores in the wrong direction.

Early in my life, I was always part of “the group” of low-handicap players who had various kinds of “money games”, but that put me in touch only with other low-handicap players who were highly competitive. Just as I was getting fully engaged in the golf equipment industry in the early 1980s, I was blessed to be a part of a group at my club called “The Grinders”. We had standing tee times every day…so if you could get away, you played. There were about 35-40 of us who might show up, with as many as 6-7 groups going off on Fridays and Saturdays.

These guys sported handicaps from scratch to 20, and we threw up balls to see how we were paired, so for twenty years, I had up close and personal observation of a variety of “lab rats.”

This let me observe and study how many different ways there were to approach the game and how many different kinds of mishits could happen in a round of golf. As a golf industry marketer and club designer, I couldn’t have planned it any better.

So back to a continuation of the topic of last week, the type of irons you choose to play should reflect the kinds of misses you are hoping to help. And the cold, hard truth is this:

We as golf club designers, engineers and fitters, can only do so much to help the outcome of any given shot.

Generally, mishits will fall into two categories – the “swing miss” and the “impact miss”.

Let’s start with the former, as it is a vast category of possibilities.

The “swing miss” occurs when the swing you made never had a chance of producing the golf shot you had hoped to see. The clubhead was not on a good path through impact, and/or the clubface was not at all square to the target line. This can produce any number of outcomes that are wildly wrong, such as a cold skull of the ball, laying the sod over it, hard block to the right (for a right-hand player), smother hook…I think you get the point.

The smaller swing misses might be a draw that turns over a bit too much because you rotated through impact a bit aggressively or a planned draw that doesn’t turn over at all because you didn’t. Or it could be the shot that flies a bit too high because you released the club a bit early…or much too low because you had your hands excessively ahead of the clubhead through impact.

The swing miss could be simply that you made a pretty darn good swing, but your alignment was not good, or the ball position was a bit too far forward in your swing…or too far back. Basically, the possible variations of a “swing miss” are practically endless and affect tour pros and recreational golfers alike.

The cruel fact is that most recreational golfers do not have solid enough swing mechanics or playing disciplines to deliver the clubhead to the ball in a consistent manner. It starts with a fundamentally sound hold on the club. From there, the only solution is to make a commitment to learn more about the golf swing and your golf swing and embark on a journey to become a more consistent striker of the golf ball. I would suggest that this is one of the most fascinating aspects of the game and encourage anyone who loves golf to go down this path.

But today’s post is about “mishits”, so let’s move on the other and much smaller category of misses…the “impact miss”. As a 40-year golf club designer, this is the world in which I function and, unfortunately, to which I am limited.

The “impact miss” is when most of the elements of the swing pretty much fall into place, so that the club is delivered pretty accurately to the ball…on the right path…face square to the target line at impact…but you miss the sweet spot of the club by just a bit.

Finding ways of getting better results out of those mishits is the singular goal of the entire golf club industry.

Big drivers of today are so much more forgiving of a 1/8 to ½ inch miss than even drivers of a decade ago, it’s crazy. Center strikes are better, of course, with our fast faces and Star Wars technology, but the biggest value of these big drivers is that your mishits fly much more like a perfect hit than ever before. In my own launch monitor testing of my current model driver to an old Reid Lockhart persimmon driver of the mid-1990s, I see that dead center hits are 20-25 yards different, but mishits can be as far as 75-80 yards apart, the advantage obviously going to the modern driver.

The difference is not nearly as striking with game improvement irons versus a pure forged one-piece blade. If the lofts and other specs are the same, the distance a pure strike travels is only a few yards more with the game improvement design, but a slight mishit can see that differential increase to 12-15 yards. But, as I noted in last week’s article, this difference tends to reduce as the lofts increase. Blades and GI irons are much less different in the 8- and 9-irons than in the lower lofts.

This has gotten a bit longer than usual, so how about I wrap up this topic next week with “A Tale of Two Misses – Part 2”? I promise to share some robotic testing insights that might surprise you.

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Golf's Perfect Imperfections

Golf’s Perfect Imperfections: World Long Drive! Go Mu!

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In this week’s podcast we discuss Wisdom In Golf Premium, new ways to help and fun talk about rules and etiquette.

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