To design Callaway’s latest driver, the 2013 Razr Fit Xtreme, company engineers broke down the key ingredients of its most successful drivers models, realigning them with new technology that makes the Razr Fit Xtreme lower spinning, more forgiving and deliver more ball speed than its predecessor, the 2012 Razr Fit driver.
The Razr Fit Xtreme is also Callaway’s widest ranging driver offering according to Evan Gibbs, manager of performance analysis and club configuration for Callaway. This is because the lower-lofted Razr Fit Xtreme drivers (8.5 degrees, 9.5 degrees and 10.5 degrees) have different performance characteristics than the higher-lofted drivers (11.5 degrees and 13 degrees).
The OptiFit Hosel adjusts the face angle to an Open, Square, or Closed position at address and the OptiFit Weights (13 grams and 1 gram) also shift the clubhead’s CG to help you play a Draw or Neutral ball flight off the tee.
The lower-lofted Razr Fit Xtreme drivers are modeled after Callaway’s FT Tour drivers, which were extremely popular on the PGA Tour. While the Razr Fit found its way into the bags of many better players and tour players, Callaway received feedback that many preferred the lower-spinning FT Tour drivers to the higher-spinning Razr Fit.
“We took a step back and looked at how each loft was going to be played,” Gibbs said. “We saw that better players wanted a smaller footprint and a more penetrating trajectory, while higher-handicappers wanted larger, more forgiving footprint and more spin for optimum distance.”
In order to lower the spin rate of the Razr Fit Xtreme, Callaway engineers needed to lower the driver’s center of gravity (CG), which they did by removing weight from the driver’s “Forged Composite” crown. Engineers also thinned the perimeter of the “Speed Frame Face” that was used on the Razr Fit driver.
This Speed Frame Face creates incredibly fast ball speeds all across the face for longer, more consistent distance.
The thinner face, combined with Callaway’s updated “VFT” and “Hyperbolic Face Technology,” adds more speed to mishits according to Gibbs. The face also has more curvature than in previous Callaway drivers, which helps straighten out off-center strikes.
The weight saved from the face (about 3 grams) was moved to more optimal positions such as the rear toe section of the sole, where it deepens the center of gravity and makes the Razr Fit Xtreme’s adjustable weights more symmetrical, adding stability to the head.
These changes have resulted in more distance and less spin for Callaway Staffers like Luke List, who led all tours in driving distance in 2012. Gibbs said that during testing List picked up 16.6 yards with the new driver compared to his Razr Fit, adding 0.6 mph of ball speed and reducing his spin rate by almost 500 rpms.
Like the Razr Fit, the Razr Fit Xtreme driver allows golfers to adjust the face angle to one of three settings: neutral, open and closed. But the lower-lofted and higher-lofted models have two very different appearances at address.
The lower-lofted models measure 440cc and have a 1-degree open face angle at the neutral setting. Changing the Opti-Fit Hosel to the open setting on these drivers will open the face another 1.5 degrees, resulting in a face that is 2.5 degrees open at address. If they are adjusted to the closed setting, the face will rest 0.5 degrees closed.
The higher-lofted drivers measure 460cc and are longer heel-to-toe than the lower-lofted versions. This places the sweetspot of the club closer to the hosel, which increases draw bias. The higher-lofted models also sit in a square position when set in neutral, meaning they can be adjusted to either 1.5 degrees open or closed.
On both the lower-lofted and higher lofted drivers, changing to the face angle will also change the loft of the club. The closed setting adds 1 degree of loft to the neutral setting (a 9.5-degree driver becomes a 10.5-degree) while the open setting subtracts 1 degree (a 9.5-degree driver becomes an 8.5-degree). According to Gibbs, Callaway’s testing showed that better players had a tendency to use the Opti-Fit Hosel to adjust loft, while higher handicap players used it to correct a hook or slice.
One of the most important features of the Razr Fit Xtreme drivers to consumers could potentially be the stock shaft offerings. Many OEMs install stripped-down versions of popular shafts in their drivers that have altered characteristics. For Callaway’s newest lineup, the company decided to use an unmodified Aldila Trinity shaft, as well as unmodified Matrix Black Tie7M3 shaft. The Matrix shaft alone carries a $300-plus price tag at retail, making the retail price of the Razr Fit Xtreme, $399, all the more impressive. The Callaway Razr Fit Xtreme drivers will be available at retail on Jan. 18, 2013.
[colored_box color=”grey”]Additional Tech Specs and info:
- Composite materials such as the Forged Composite that the Razr Fit Xtreme driver uses in its crown have a tendency to mute a driver’s sound and cause a “thud” feeling at impact. According to Gibbs, Callaway engineers worked hard on the acoustics of the Razr Fit Xtreme, making sure it had a “loud and metallic” sound.
- Callaway received feedback that the 2012 Razr Fit’s swingweight of D6 was too heavy, so the 2013 Razr Fit Xtreme drivers will have a D4 swingweight, which was accomplished by reducing the head weight 5 grams. Standard shaft lengths with be 45.5 inches.
- The tip diameter of the Opti-Fit Hosel has been changed from 0.350 to 0.335 to match industry trends. Previous Opti-Fit Hosels will fit in the Razr Fit Xtreme drivers, but their 0.350 shafts will not fit in the new Opti-Fit sleeves.
- A weight kit of 4, 6, 8 and 10 grams will be available to adjust CG and swingweight. No Tour Authentic model is planned at this time, nor is there an Opti-Fit Hosel with more options in the works according to Gibbs.
- The green color of the Razr Fit was inspired by the popularity of the 2012 Razr Fit Tour Authentic driver, which also has a green color scheme. It also matches the color of the most playable shaft option, the Aldila Trinity.
- Callaway’s UDesign for the Razr Fit Xtreme driver will launch on Jan. 18 with the driver. Consumers will be able to choose from eight different color options — black, white, blue, red, orange, green, purple and yellow — which can be placed on the sole, crown, or both. Laser etching on the sole will also be available, although pricing is still undetermined. Expect for it to be around $50.[/colored_box]
Check out the shaft specs and photos below, and and click here for more discussion in the “Tour/Pre-release equipment” forum.
Unmodified Aldila Trinity
X Flex 68g, 280cpm, 3.9deg torque, 104mm tip flex. .335″ tip diameter
S Flex 67 g, 269 cpm, 4.5 deg torque, 112mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
R Flex 64 g, 247 cpm, 5.4 deg torque, 124mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
L Flex 63g, 229cpm, 6.3 deg torque, 129mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
Unmodified Matrix Black Tie 7M3
X flex 74g, 265cpm, 4.1deg torque, 85mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
S Flex 71g, 253cpm, 4.2 deg torque, 90mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
R Flex 69g, 243cpm, 4.4 deg torque, 93mm tip flex, .335″ tip diameter
The uncommon club that led to Phil Mickelson’s opening 64 at Wells Fargo
Phil Mickelson is one of the most interesting players on tour, not just for his creative and exciting play but also his gear which he is very particular about depending on the event.
Lefty got off to a stunning start this week at Quail Hollow, firing a round of 64, all set up by his excellence off the tee, an area of the game that has sometimes hurt Mickelson.
On Thursday, the 50-year-old gained 1.5 strokes over the field off the tee, and the secret behind the success was down to a 2-wood he plays as a mini driver.
The 2-wood in question is a TaylorMade “Original One” Mini driver, and following his electric start at the Wells Fargo, Mickelson told reporters what he gains from using the club off the tee and how he uses it:
“It’s just kind of a mini driver head that I use as a strong 3-wood, and out here, because the fairways are so firm if I hit it low enough, I’m able to get a lot of chase out of it, and I don’t feel like I’m sacrificing any distance. So that allows me to kind of keep my misses a lot tighter. Today I hit it very successful, I hit a lot of good shots with it.”
Mickelson ranked eight off the tee after round one, and following some fun banter on Twitter with playing partner Joel Dahmen before Thursday’s round, the club helped Lefty gain all the bragging rights heading into day two.
Lesson learned ? pic.twitter.com/WgjiWmB3hM
— Phil Mickelson (@PhilMickelson) May 6, 2021
Is a blade just a blade? – GolfWRXers discuss
In our forums, our members have been discussing blade irons and whether there are discernible difference in models or not.
WRXer ‘LowAndLeft32’ wants to know how fellow members decide on a particular blade to game, and WRXers have been sharing their thoughts and process in our forums.
Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.
- benclab: “Look of top line, offset and how bounce acts at contact and through. All blades are not the same.”
- Yoshifan151: “Blade designs differ a lot from one manufacturer to another. Sole design is the biggest one that will have an impact IMO. But if you like your VR Pros I’d stick with them personally; those are one of the best blade sets ever in terms of a total package.”
- cgasucks: “The shape of the blade has virtually been changed for decades. You can only forge a billet of carbon steel into so many shapes. It is really up to the person to decide. You can’t go wrong with any of the blades you listed. Your current Nike Blades are can still perform up there with today’s blades. For me, I would choose one which is based on looks and feel and how it frames against the ball at address.”
- DaRiz: “Looks at address. Sound/feel. Looks in the bag. In that order, no other criteria need be analyzed.”
PXG expanding Battle Ready putter collection with Closer and Spitfire
PXG is expanding its Battle Ready Collection of putters with the all-new: Closer and Spitfire models which are 100 percent milled and have been engineered to combine high MOI with prominent alignment features to increase confidence on the greens.
“Golfers love options. And our new Battle Ready Closer and Spitfire are two of the very best putters you’ll ever use. Period. These putters are fully optimized, from CG and MOI to stability and alignment so that you can sink more putts” -PXG founder and CEO Bob Parsons
Battle Ready Closer
The Battle Ready Closer is a high MOI wide-body blade featuring high-density tungsten in the heel and toe to increase the putter’s stability compared to the previous model and optimize the center of gravity.
Beyond the flange sightline, the geometry of the head is intentionally built around parallel and perpendicular lines for easy alignment.
Battle Ready Spitfire
The Spitfire is a “wide-winged” mallet with the wings built using tungsten to create a very high-MOI and to also aid with alignment.
- Optimized face pattern – Like with previous PXG putters, the pyramid face pattern optimizes the ball speed across the putter face by reducing speed on center strikes while also retaining speed towards the heel and toe, all providing a soft feel. The face ensures consistency in all parameters that affect roll including; initial ball velocity, launch angle, spin rate, and skid.
- Tungsten weighting – For maximum stability, the putter has an added tungsten frame along the perimeter to boost MOI and create a deeper center of gravity. The Tungsten works alongside the lightweight aluminum frame to remove mass away from the center while still having ports for weight customization.
Price, specs, and availability
Both the Battle Ready series Closer and Spitfire putters will retail at $525 but are being introduced at a special introductory price of $295. For more information or book a putter fitting, visit PXG.com or call 844.PLAY.PXG.
Specs will vary based on putter configurations, but each putter will have the option for a plumber’s neck, Heel Shafted, Double Bend, or Armlock – provide additional customization based on a player’s unique stroke style.
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