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All-new KBS TD graphite shafts for drivers and woods released

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After more than a decade designing steel shafts that have helped revolutionize the golf custom fitting and OEM space, KBS Golf Shafts and designer Kim Braly are going further by officially launching the all new TD Driver and wood shafts.

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Until recently KBS’s focus had always been on steel iron and wedge shafts, including the popular KBS Tour, KBS Tour 90, C-Taper, and TourV products. But over the last few years, its line has slowly expanded to graphite hybrid and irons shafts in varying weights and profiles to help create a matrix of shafts that would allow fitters to find a KBS Shaft for almost any situation. The one void in the matrix was driver and wood shafts—but not anymore!

The all new KBS TD (Tour Driver) wood shafts are a huge step forward for a company that has always focused on helping golfers get the most performance out of their clubs. The KBS TD’s range in weight options from 40g to 80g+ in 10g increments with evolving profiles as the weights increases. This ideology is based on the simple fact that from years of working with the best fitters in the world, KBS has developed a deep understanding of how these factors work together to help each player in certain swing “categories.”

The other interesting part of the KBS TD wood line is the absence of stated flex on each shaft—yes, they 100 percent come in varying flexes but not in the same “stiff” and “regular” naming that most golfers are familiar with. Instead, the TD shafts are separated into categories ranging from Category 1 (softest ) through Category 5 (Tour Stiff ). This helps eliminate some of the preconceived notions that some golfers might have about trying different shaft flexes, and on the custom fitting side, also helps fitters better understand each player swing profile that matches up with a certain weight and flex (category).

KBS TD shafts: Specs & fitting details

Getting into the nitty-gritty of the specs from a fitting perspective, every shaft in the KBS TD line has the potential to work in any driver or fairway wood. This gives golfers the opportunity to play a KBS product right through the entire top end of the bag from driver to highest-lofted fairway wood.

The fitting opportunities are also expanded since every shaft in the TD line has 4 inches of parallel tip section to allow fitters and builders fine-tune to create in-between flexes. This is nothing new in the shaft world, but considering this design trait is available in every shaft, it means that, for example, if you need a “Category 3.5” a builder could tip a 3 a little extra to make it play the perfect flex.

For more information on the KBS TD wood shafts and the rest of the KBS shaft lines, check out KBSGOLFSHAFTS.com 

Also, check out GolfWRX Forums: KBS TD Shafts Spotted to join the discussion on these newest shafts from KBS.

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Ryan Barath is a club-fitter & master club builder with more than 17 years of experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour players. He is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf. He now works independently from his home shop and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, and share his passion for club building, course architecture and wedge grinding.

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Pingback: KBS TD, 1 One Step: Get to know the first KBS shaft for woods and new putter shaft – GolfWRX

  2. JP

    Oct 11, 2019 at 9:24 pm

    When will these be available?

  3. Chuck Swift

    Oct 11, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    Welome to da party pal!!

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Equipment

Titleist introduces next-generation AVX golf ball

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Titleist has today launched the third generation of its AVX golf ball, which hits retail on February 4th.

The original AVX was engineered by Titleist in 2018 as a performance alternative to its flagship Pro V1 and Pro V1x by offering the lowest flight, lowest spin and softest feel of the three premium offerings. The next-gen version features updated technology for players who prioritize distance and soft feel in a urethane covered golf ball.

On the new addition, Frederick Waddell, Director of Golf Ball Product Management, Titleist, said

“With new AVX, we focused on what AVX golfers are asking for: improving upon the already incredible distance and feel that golfers love, while enhancing greenside spin. We achieved this by softening the urethane cover to achieve greater short game performance, while adding a new core formulation for speed, and new aerodynamics for flight stability and more distance.”

The 2022 AVX ball features a new reformulated core designed to generate high speed and low long game spin to drive more distance with an excellent soft feel.

The reformulated core increases stiffness of the outermost portions of the core while keeping the center of the core soft. This combination aims to decrease driver and long game spin, while a high flex casing layer is designed to promote high ball speed and low spin on long shots for enhanced distance.

A new softer cover increases the soft (urethane cover) over hard (high flex casing) differential, which contributes to improved short game and greenside spin, while a new 348 tetrahedral catenary aerodynamic dimple pattern aims to provide a piercing low trajectory ball flight.

The new AVX is offered in both white and high optic yellow and will be available in golf shops worldwide beginning February 4, 2022, and costs $49.99 per dozen.

 

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Patrick Reed on PXG driver deal, new Grindworks “Barrett” wedges (plus 2022 WITB)

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Prior to PXG’s recent announcement, Patrick Reed was an equipment free agent and had the freedom to play with any driver he wanted.

Without any mandates from a particular OEM, Reed was free to test and use different drivers from various manufacturers. And, throughout the majority of 2021, that’s what he did. Seemingly every week, Reed was using a driver from a different company, searching for his right fit.

By the end of the year, he finally found it. Starting in October 2021, Reed used a PXG 0811X Gen4 driver (equipped with his usual Aldila Rogue 125 MSI shaft) for the remainder of 2021.

Three months was an eternity in Reed’s 2021 free agency world of ever-changing driver choices, so it was no surprise when PXG announced the endorsement deal at the start of 2022. He was already using the company’s driver for a relatively extensive period, so the deal happened organically.

Following his T-15 finish at the 2022 Sentry Tournament of Champions in Maui – his first event as a member of the PXG Troops – I briefly caught up with Reed on Tuesday at the 2022 American Express in Palm Desert to ask him about the driver and the deal.

“The driver’s been amazing,” Reed told GolfWRX. “Being in that free agency market, I’ve been able to use whatever I want. I’ve tested every driver from Callaway, TaylorMade, Titleist, Ping, PXG, and this one I feel like gives me the best opportunity to make my golf swing and hit the shot I want to, and at the same time have the speed I’m looking for. So, for me, the driver’s unbelievable.”

While the PXG driver has been in his bag for months now, he did show up to the 2022 American Express with a few new clubs.

In addition to the Grindworks irons that he’s been playing the last few years, Reed now has new Grindworks “Barrett” signature collection wedges in the bag (Barrett is the name of Reed’s son). As per the company’s website, the wedges are officially called “Grindworks + Patrick Reed – The Barrett Wedge Collection.

Designed by Niimi Kiyonari, the same craftsman who designed Reed’s irons, the Barrett wedges are the result of two years of close work with Reed to get exactly what he wants out of his wedge.

“We’ve been working really hard on designing the wedges through Grindworks,” Reed told GolfWRX on Tuesday. “They’ve been really good. It’s still a work in progress, trying to tweak them a hair here and there, but for me, it’s going to be a game-changer, because, let’s be honest, you have to be perfect from 130 yards-and-in nowadays on Tour, because that’s where you score every time.”

On the company’s website, Kiyonari writes the following about working with Reed on the wedges, and how they’re different:

“The idea of creating Mr. Reed’s wedges intrigued me. When Mr. Reed asked me to design his new wedge, I immediately realized that Patrick was after feel and nothing else. Feel permeates Patrick’s game through the core and is not to be compromised ever.

“So, the next question entered my mind… how do you go about designing a wedge that is unparalleled in the market and that you can only describe through feel at impact? Patrick had absolute faith in my ability to take his words, direction, and his eye for the aesthetics of the clubs and develop and synthesize all of the information and create what would be the perfect set of wedges.

“At first, I was tempted to dismiss the project, only because the feel is so subjective. How would I know from person to person what feel people want to be achieved? But in working with the irons with Patrick, I realized his aptitude for knowing what feeling people as well as the best players in the world are looking for… as well as what they were not looking for. It took us well over a year and a half just discussing the details with Patrick. The alloy to use, the shape to forge, how many grooves to cut and not once during all this time did Patrick waver about the technology or processes, all he wanted to achieve were his grinds….the grinds he had been trying to duplicate with each win, with each practice, wedges that would no longer need grinding and lead tape, he wanted his wedges and he wanted me to create his ‘go-to’ set of wedges, no grinding or lead tape necessary, ready for game- time.

“It took over two years of prototypes, discussions, changes, and sacrificed so many samples to achieve exactly what we all wanted. As a surprise to Patrick, we named his signature Wedges ‘Barrett’ after his only son.”

Reed had three Grindworks Barrett wedges (51, 57, and 61 degrees) in the bag on Tuesday at The American Express, although he appears to still be testing out the 61-degree version against Titleist Vokey SM9 and SM8 lob wedges.

As a side note, I also asked Reed about the relationship with Grindworks and how it started in the first place.

“Justine,” Reed said. “Justine (Reed’s wife) contacted them whenever I was trying to figure out what direction I was trying to go with clubs when I was in free agency. We just asked them if they’d build us a set of clubs, and I’m thinking they’re just going to send a blade that they’ve already made with my specs and just send ’em to me. After about 500 emails and 8 different CAD designs, we designed the entire set from scratch.”

Below is an in-hand look at each of the new Barrett wedges and a company description of each new design.

Grindworks PR-B51

“The Grindworks Barrett 51 wedge is all about ‘smooth transitions.’ This wedge is intended to give you the shotmaking from the fairway giving players optimal spin, with the ability to control trajectory, and create the shot you want or need into the greens.”

Grindworks PR-B57

“The Grindworks Barrett 57 grooves are stamped lower and also closer to the leading edge giving it an overall straighter look but also keeps the forgiveness needed not to ‘dig.’ The intention with this 57-degree wedge was to give heel and toe relief, a wider sole, and smooth transitions from the heel to the toe.”

Grindworks PR-B61  

“A ‘High-Toe Look,’ but not a high toe. The 61-degree wedge has a nice straight leading edge, but transitions to the bounce smoothly so it does not dig. The grooves are stamped lower and are set deep into the wedge for optimal spin and performance. The bounce of this wedge is lower with heel and toe relief which allow for play on multiple surfaces and different lies and gives a player a multitude of shots, enhancing playability anywhere around the greens or from the fairway.”

Below is everything that Reed had in his bag on Tuesday ahead of the 2022 American Express. To see what GolfWRX members are saying about Reed’s equipment, and see all of our photos, check out the full Patrick Reed WITB 2022 forum thread here.

Driver: PXG 0811X Gen4 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue 125 MSI 70 TX

3 Wood: TaylorMade SIM (15 degrees), TaylorMade Stealth Plus (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue 130 MSI 70 TX

Hybrid: Callaway Apex (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila RIP Phenom Hybrid 100 TX

Irons: Grindworks PR-202 (4 iron), Grindworks Patrick Reed Forged 101-A  (5-PW)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Grindworks Barrett (51, 57 and 61 degrees), Titleist Vokey SM9 (lob wedge), Titleist Vokey SM8 (lob wedge)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Odyssey White Hot Pro #3

Click here to see all of our photos of Reed’s equipment.

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Whats in the Bag

Patrick Reed WITB 2022 (January)

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Driver: PXG 0811X GEN4 (9 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue Silver 125 MSI 70 TX

3-wood: TaylorMade SIM (15 degrees), 3-wood: TaylorMade Stealth Plus (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila Rogue Black 130 MSI 70 TX

Hybrid: Callaway Apex Pro (18 degrees)
Shaft: Aldila RIP Phenom Hybrid 100 TX

Irons: Grindworks PR-202 (4) Grindworks PR-101A (5-PW)
Shafts:  True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Grindworks Barrett (51, 57, 61 degrees), Titleist Vokey Design SM9 (61 degrees), SM8 (61 degrees)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Odyssey White Hot Pro 3

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

More photos of Patrick Reed’s WITB in the forums.

Read our full interview with P. Reed here

Patrick Reed WITB history

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