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Shaft Test: Graphite Design’s new Tour AD-TP versus the famous Tour AD-DI



With a similar profile to the company’s famous Tour AD-DI shaft, and a few new technologies for a slightly different ball flight, Graphite Design’s new Tour AD-TP shaft will surely entice a legion of high-spin golfers.

The new shafts are made for a mid launch and low spin rates, according to Graphite Design’s website, while the Tour AD-DI shafts are made for mid/high to high launch angles and low to low/mid spin rates. Certainly, they are in the same wheelhouse, but for anyone looking to create a slightly more penetrating ball flight with lower launch and lower spin, the new shaft could be their winning ticket.


To accomplish its performance, the AD-TP shafts are made with a faster taper rate from the lower-mid section to the tip of the shaft, and use an all-new graphite material from Toray Industries called T1100G carbon fiber pre-preg. They also use Toray’s Nanoalloy technology in the tip section, which was first introduced in Graphite Design’s Tour AD-DI. It help golfers gain more control of the club face by resisting torque. Read more about the Tour AD-TP shaft’s tech here.

Here’s the bend profile of the Tour AD-TP shafts, according to Graphite Design’s website:


And here’s how the Tour AD-TP shafts stack up versus the other Tour AD shafts:

Screen Shot 2016-10-26 at 12.13.37 PM

As you can see, the Tour AD-TP (top row) compared to the Tour AD-DI (bottom row) will have a firmer mid and butt section, but will also have the familiar stiff tip section.

Personally, I’ve tested just about every new mainstream driver shaft that’s come out in the past three years, and I just haven’t been able to find something that matches my swing like the Tour AD-DI. As a golfer who fights a nasty hook and too much spin, it’s the stiffness and stability of the tip of the shaft that makes me comfortable enough to “go at it.” I’m also a Mets fan, so I like the orange color.


But for whatever reason, my golfing brain finds other shafts to load and unload way differently, either forcing me to flip or block drives, leading to tragic results. So although I often test the latest and greatest golf shafts for you, the GolfWRX readers, I’ve all but given up on other shafts making it into my gamer driver. Yes, other shafts have given me “more optimal” numbers in a Trackman environment, but there’s nothing optimal about feeling like you’re going to duck hook the ball off the planet with OB stakes left.

When Graphite Design announced a new shaft with a similar profile that’s made to create a slightly more penetrating trajectory, however, I’ll admit I was excited to try it. Let’s see how the numbers played out.

The Numbers


I tested my Tour AD-DI gamer shaft (45.5 inches, tipped 1 inch) against a Tour AD-TP shaft (45.5 inches, untipped) and a Tour AD-TP shaft (45.5 inches, tipped 1 inch) in a TaylorMade M1 460 head (10.5 degrees) set to neutral. Yes, I have a bit more swing speed in the tank than displayed below, but it’s also late October and I don’t want to have a blown out back all winter. I conducted my testing at the Launch Pad at Carl’s Golfland on TrackMan 4 using premium golf balls.



Magenta = Tour AD-TP (tipped 1 inch)


— Shots with the un-tipped shaft trended to the right. It felt like the face was opening on the downswing and I couldn’t turn my shots over. The data solidifies for me that performance matches my feel, and that I do indeed need a tipped shaft.

— The AD-DI shaft had the highest spin (2953 rpm), highest landing angle, most height (122.1 feet) and launched the highest (13.7 degrees).

— The AD-TP (tipped 1 inch) carried 4.9 yards shorter than the Tour AD-DI, but went 3.7 yards longer in total. This shows how much more penetrating the ball flight with a AD-TP shaft can be.

— Spin rate dropped from 2953 rpm with the Tour AD-DI (tipped 1 inch) to 2460 rpm with the AD-TP (tipped 1 inch).

— With nearly identical clubhead speed, ball speed and smash factors, it’s clear the Tour AD-TP was offering better numbers and tighter dispersion for me.

The Takeaway


The Graphite Design Tour AD-TP shaft is currently selling for $500 at retail. Based on the improvement I saw in my numbers, I would say that the new shaft is worth the value for my swing. The profile and new materials are a match for me in regards to ball flight characteristics and feel. I would describe the feel as “smooth-stiff, with a stable tip.”

Of course, it’s important to undergo a proper fitting, as you saw that the un-tipped version of the Tour AD-GP shaft was giving me fits. But, if you’re like me and struggle with high spin rates and inconsistency, the Tour AD-TP shaft may help you find more accuracy… and a bit more distance, too.

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He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.



  1. Golfandpuff

    Nov 21, 2016 at 7:20 pm

    Confidence is worth a ton…so if the shoe fits….

    Bottom line find one for a song and play it!

  2. Mike

    Oct 31, 2016 at 1:36 pm

    Andrew, the author of this review, comments about hitting duck hooks because that is his miss when he uses a shaft that doesn’t “fit” his swing style. It is the same issue I fight. The fact he has peppered the right side of the grid would be comforting for him. All in all, Andrew fits the new TP shaft pretty well.

  3. Matt

    Oct 30, 2016 at 11:57 pm

    Some shafts get progressively weaker to the tip (Rogue, AD-DI), many increase stiffness into the tip (most other GD tour AD models, Kuro Kage) To assume all shafts need to be tipped just seems uninformed. Tipping off stiffness in a shaft like a AD-BB is just going to lower the kick point and give you a softer tip; exact opposite of tipping a AD-DI.

  4. Jack

    Oct 30, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    Wow the author tried really hard to say this is better. The chart looks pretty much the same for all three shafts as far as landing zone. Just one leftward (I’m guess more of a hook) shot skewed the oval left. Unless he’s a left hander, none of his shots were hooks, rather either push or slices. Strange for him to say that he’s fighting a hook when he didn’t hit any.

    The real difference does seem to be one offering more roll and one more carry due to launch angle changes I’m guessing due to the stiffer mid and butt sections. Worth it? The argument seems a bit thin.

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Dustin Johnson settles on driver after testing 5 in last week



Dustin Johnson cracked his driver at last week’s Northern Trust and has since been on the hunt for a new gamer in time for this week’s BMW Championship.

Per Golf Channel, DJ was seen testing five different drivers on the range this week at Caves Valley Golf Club, and though he’s opted for the SIM most of the year, it appears Johnson is ready to try something new this week.

According to Golf Channel’s Brentley Romine, Johnson has settled on a TaylorMade SIM2 Max at 10.5 degrees with an LA Golf Shaft for this week’s playoff event.

Johnson is 20th on Tour for Strokes Gained: Off The Tee in 2021 but has struggled with the big stick since finishing T8 at the Open. Since then, DJ has missed two cuts from three.

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Vokey WedgeWorks launches limited-edition 60A grind



Vokey WedgeWorks has unveiled its limited-edition 60A grind, which is inspired by major champion Geoff Ogilvy.

The unique wedge features 60 degrees of loft and 4 degrees of bounce and is designed for the player looking to flight the ball higher while playing from firm turf and bunkers.

Speaking on the new limited-edition 60A grind, Vokey Tour Rep Aaron Dill said

I spoke with Geoff (Ogilvy), and we got on the topic of Australian golf courses and how they compared to courses in America and around the world. I asked him some specific questions which resulted in an idea to design a lob wedge that complemented the firm links-style conditions that players face – not just in Australia and Europe – but globally. Geoff has always been a low bounce player in his 60 degree, so I took the original chassis that he had in his L wedge and removed the ribbon taking the bounce down.”

The wedge was born out of the popular Vokey Design L Grind, with the grind line on the sole smoothed out in design for a faster feel through the turf.

Consistent with all SM8 wedges, the 60A features a progressive CG, pushed forward of the face for increased MOI, as well as Spin Milled grooves designed to offer a consistent ball flight control and maximum spin. The 60A is available in a Brushed Copper finish which will wear over time.

The limited-edition Vokey WedgeWorks 60A grind s now available for $250, only through WedgeWorks on


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Rory McIlroy spotted testing Graphite Design Tour AD XC shaft at BMW



Rory McIlroy looks to be continuing his season of equipment adjustments this week at the BMW Championship.

McIlroy has been in a Mitsubishi Kuro Kage XTS 70 X with a SIM2 for most of the year, but this week, we were tipped off by forum member j13 that McIlroy is testing a Graphite Design Tour AD XC shaft in his driver.

Photo c/o j13

A source at Graphite Design confirmed McIlroy is in the Tour AD XC 7 TX shaft as he looks for lower spin off the driver while still being able to draw the ball consistently.

The low/mid-launch, low spin shaft features a soft handle section with a stiff mid-section and tip and weighs 76.5 grams.

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