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GolfWRX Spotlight: Tour Edge Exotics EXS Blade wedge review

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At GolfWRX, we leave no stone unturned to find the best golf equipment on the market. Although this may come across as an insinuation that some golf equipment can be found under rocks, that is not that case. One of the names that has long intrigued me is Tour Edge. I consider it the next Mizuno (with apologies to anyone who finds fault with that characterization.)

For the longest time, Mizuno flew well under the radar, preferring to spend dollars on research and development, rather than self-promotion and tour sponsorships. Guess what? Same business model at Tour Edge. Those who play TE stand by the equipment as if defending a fortress. That was enough for me to reach out to the company, to find out what is really up with the Illinois firm.

Supplied to me were 54-degree and 58-degree Tour Edge Exotics EXS Blade wedges, with a True Temper Dynamic Gold 115 shaft in each. Over the course of one month, I had the opportunity to put them in play on a variety of golf courses. I decided to not test them in practice circumstances, as that is not the modus operandi of the majority of recreational golfers. Instead, my thinking was, I’ll pull them out of the bag when I need them, and we’ll see how they feel, how they connect, how the ball reacts, and how my confidence wanes or grows. In other words, I gave them a real-world, weekend-golfer assessment.

After my on-course review, I dug into the true technology behind the release of the EXS Blade series. After a thorough inspection, three elements of the clubhead construction stood out, and I feel justified in sharing them with you here. These aspects are: milling, the flared toe, and sole grind. Each is unique to this club, and separates it from wannabe peers.

1. Milling

The first aspect of milling, as related to these wedges, concerns the milling out process of moving weight up and down for distance control. We are fallible swingers of clubs, and our strikes are not always where we anticipate. Tour Edge anticipates this. If we deloft or proloft the club face, weight is there to save us to a degree.

The second aspect of milling is milling for precisely-forged tolerances. The grooves are exact. Their spin communication is exact. Our pitches and chips are more exact, thanks to individually-milled faces.

2. Flared Toe Design

My word of the day is chamfer, which is a cut into a right angle, for transitioning purposes. Like a bevel, it is a carpentry term. There is a chamfer on the rear of the face, directly above the words Milled Forging. What appear to be aesthetic, is actually part of the weight-positioning process. The flared toe allows for continued distribution of weight (see milling out above) to enhance shot values.

I’m an aesthetics guy, and the wedges I used previous to receipt of these (54 and 58 degree) models, had a traditional toe, with more of a gentle pear shape. The Tour Edge flared toe stands out to me, or at least it did, over the rounds I’ve played. Reminding my own self that I had to trust the tech, it wasn’t long before the form took a back seat to the function.

3. Dual Groove Construction

Something I had not encountered in wedge development, is dual groove construction. The grooving for the lower lofts (50 and 52 degree) differs from that found on the higher-loft (54, 56, 58, 60 degree) clubs. According to Jon Claffey, vice president of marketing at Tour Edge Golf,

The dual groove construction optimizes groove edge contact, maximizing the spin needed for the diverse array of shots around the green.

What this means to me, then, is that shots that come in lower (and hotter, even fractionally) will benefit from deeper grooves (more spin.) This will align those wedges with the higher-lofted ones, whose descent into the green will be steeper and softer, and will not require the same bite as their more vertical siblings.

Verdict

These wedges will stay in my bag, replacing the Mizunos that were there before. I’ll look forward to seeing how they wear over time, as five rounds become ten, become twenty, and more. If something magical (or unfortunate) occurs, I’ll speak up below in the comment space, to apprise you of the realization.

If you haven’t heard of Tour Edge before, and also if you have, give them a look. Golf club companies don’t stay in business on pity and charity; they need solid product that emanates from quality research and development. Tour Edge has four golfers on PGA Tour Champions on staff. Consider this for a moment: you’re in the twilight of your career (sad, happens to all of us) so you decide to use inferior equipment? NEVER going to happen. That’s why Lehman, McCarron, Petrovic, and Waldorf opted in on Tour Edge golf for their PGA Tour Champions livelihood.

 

 

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Ronald Montesano writes for GolfWRX.com from western New York. He dabbles in coaching golf and teaching Spanish, in addition to scribbling columns on all aspects of golf, from apparel to architecture, from equipment to travel. Follow Ronald on Twitter at @buffalogolfer.

10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Dave Bryce

    Nov 20, 2020 at 9:39 pm

    Have the 56 degrees bent too 55,love this wedge,looks,feel and spin are great!

  2. boydenit

    Oct 17, 2020 at 8:06 pm

    A lot of milling, milling, milling for a club that look like it was made in China for a few dollars a head!

    • Ronald Montesano

      Oct 18, 2020 at 7:43 am

      Beauty and all things are in the eye of the beholder. Exclamation points should be used sparingly. Here is a link to their description page: https://www.touredge.com/exotics-exs-pro-forged-blade-wedge

      They have contact information on site, and would be happy to discuss the process with you. Worth a call, I suspect.

    • Wedge Guy

      Oct 19, 2020 at 8:55 am

      Wow. I’m a club fanatic from way back and I’m shocked you would say that. These scream premium to me. I guess beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder.

      • Ronald Montesano

        Oct 23, 2020 at 8:55 am

        They play so well. I was invited to a premium course in Buffalo last weekend, and had so many 50-100 yard shots into greens (had to punch out a lot 🙂

        I was so darned comfortable with them. Hit the ball inside 15 feet on all of those 3rdies into par 4s. Putter was balky, but wedges were stellar.

  3. Milo

    Oct 17, 2020 at 6:54 pm

    I’m looking for a 46° to take the place of my PW. Probably end up being a Mizuno. I have a 60° mack daddy • forged raw and a 56° S5 blue ion.

    • Ronald Montesano

      Oct 18, 2020 at 7:46 am

      Are you a “looks” player or a “feel” player? As I revealed above, the look matters to me, so I had to get used to a bit different toe on the Tour Edge club. How do the Mack Daddy and Blue Ion toes and top lines compare, or doesn’t that matter? If it doesn’t, awesome…you can pick the best-feeling wedge to fill the 46 degree gap.

      If looks do matter psychologically, you’re handcuffed a bit, but there are so many options available. I can’t wait to see how the new Tour Edge lines/toe compare with the one I just reviewed.

  4. ChristianR

    Oct 17, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    They’re also known for their hybrid and fairway woods, but latest models of drivers have got lot of positive reviews, looks like they have the numbers of the big ones despite a lower price.

    • Ronald Montesano

      Oct 18, 2020 at 7:48 am

      I bet that you were waiting for this review. You have a nice understanding of their product. As I posited, they became the company that Mizuno used to be. They have sincere quality and are just not “out there” yet. I can’t wait to read about all the new models, and with luck, will have an opportunity to test them. Good luck with your game.

      • ChristianR

        Oct 18, 2020 at 3:50 pm

        It’s not a case my irons are Mizuno!
        Thanks for the answer Ronald.

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Equipment

Golf 101: 5 Tips to building your golf bag with CH3 (+ Charles Howell III WITB)

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I think at this point it’s safe to say that Charles Howell III is the adopted son and patron saint of WRX.

Not only is he a member of the site and visits regularly, but he’s also an avid club nerd and tester. I’ve become friends with CH3 over the past couple of years and have had some fun gear geek sessions with him. Want to know the coolest thing of all? He’s still as passionate and curious about gear as we are and not just Titleist (who he is on staff with) he’s curious about it all.

So who better to ask about how to build a great golf bag than with a man who knows it, does, and plays for his livelihood week in and week out?

These are 5 Charles Howell III golden nuggets that any golfer can learn from—and oh yeah, his take on the future is spot on.

Rule #1: Stability over speed no matter what

“Even for the guys on tour, stabilizing the clubface is paramount to good driving. One of the reasons I love testing shafts so often is to see if there is that magic combo of speed and control. However, the stability of the clubhead and shaft have to be there—I could find a combo that’s 20 yards longer, but if it’s something I can’t control, it doesn’t have a place in my bag. Extra yardage is fun until it isn’t.”

Rule #2: Find wedges that can do it all

“I chose the Vokey SM8 M Grind in the 56 and 60, because as the grind spectrum goes, they fall dead in the middle for me but everyone is different. I discovered that finding a middle ground grind wise solves the “different wedges for different grass problems” some players find themselves in. Even at Augusta, there was more Bermuda sticking out than normal which made shots from behind 15 different for example a little trickier. Not only are you chipping back towards a downslope with water behind, but it’s also now into the grain. Knowing I had wedges to combat either scenario made it that much easier. As a player, you have to put all the grinds through the paces and see what one checks off the most boxes. It might be something you never considered.”

Rule #3 Forgiveness looks different for every player

“Iron set makeups have changed so much in recent years. Pay attention to the soles when choosing your irons, even in the longer irons. It would be easy to think that bigger heads wider soles would be a no-brainer to hit, but to be honest, it’s not that simple. Sometimes finding a sole that will help the club get in and out of the ground easily will get you that center contact you were looking for. Although guys on tour may choose beefier long irons, it’s pretty rare to find one with a really wide sole. Soles that large encourage a player to try and sweep it off the turf which is counter-intuitive with an iron in your hand. When getting fit, pay attention to attack angles and center contact with your longer clubs; you may find that thinner soles help you more than anything else.”

Rule #4 Enjoy the process of learning and testing

“Obviously playing for a living gives me the advantage of testing a ton of stuff, but it’s just as fun doing the research at home (online) and understanding what certain equipment can do and the idea behind it. I still rely on testing as much as I can to see what works but it’s the pursuit of knowledge that keeps it all fresh week in and week out. Technology is so good these days but like anything you have to ask questions, look around try some stuff and then make a decision. Remember it’s your golf bag, take some pride in demanding that every inch of it works for you.

Eyes on the future…

“I think as we go down this Bryson/distance chase, the ultimate result on tour will be a lot of two driver bags. Look at it this way, having a 47-inch driver for long bombs, and a 44.5 inch for tighter drives, and a 4-wood isn’t all that hard to imagine. Players can tweak lofts in the irons and wedges easily to adjust to gapping. It’s not rocket science, and I don’t think we are that far from seeing multiple players on tour doing it that way.”

Charles Howell III WITB

Driver: Titleist TSI3 (10.5 degrees, A1 SureFit setting)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD XC 6 X

3-wood: Ping G425 LST (14.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black Tour Spec 8 X

7-wood: Ping G410 Max (20.5 degrees @20)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black Tour Spec 9 X
Irons: Titleist T100 (4-6) 620 MB (7-9)
Shafts: Project X LZ 6.5 (hard stepped)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (48-10F @47, 52-12F, 56-08M, 60-08M)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron 009M

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Align

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GolfWRX Classifieds (12/3/20): Mavrik SubZero, rare Scotty Cameron, Wilson Staff

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member CLRMTgolfer – Wilson Staff forged combo set

This is one extremely nice custom combo set of irons from Wilson golf – from blades, all the way to the Staff utility, this set has everything you need for shotmaking.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Wilson staff iron set

Member EHSgolf1 – Callaway Mavrik SubZero driver

Your chance to get an almost new Callaway Mavrik SubZero for less than new price!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Callaway SubZero

Member Champ 2430 – Scotty Cameron Timeless longneck prototype

As they say “if you know you know” and this rare Scotty Cameron Prototype longneck is a thing of beauty – the only thing is I really hope you have a big golfing budget.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Rare longneck Cameron

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds

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Adidas X Vice Golf launch The Vice Golf Shoe by Adidas

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Adidas has teamed up with Vice Golf to launch the new Vice Golf Shoe inspired from off the course which includes a dozen Vice Pro Drip Lime x Adidas golf balls.

The Vice Golf Shoe from Adidas contains ultraboost and a signature lime-green colorway to accent the designs for life both on and off the golf course. The shoe features a camouflage pattern in gray and white on the top of the shoe, while a brand-new drip pattern decorates the boost material at the bottom.

The shoe features branding “discoverables”, such as a subtle Vice logo on the tongue of the shoe while a collab logo is celebrated within. The company’s motto “Embrace Your Vice” runs down the spine of the heel, while another Vice logo lives underneath the 3-stripe caging on the inside of the foot.

If golfers want a brighter color pop, the alternate neon lime laces give that option.

“Based in Bavaria like Adidas, we have always looked up to this global ambassador and brand that has made big moves in both the golf and footwear in recent years. It is a great honor to finally present the result of 22 months of work with tears of happiness when the final pair of shoes arrived” – Vice Golf founder and CEO Ingo Duellmann

In addition to the shoe, the packaging of the Vice Golf Shoe by Adidas is made to look, feel and act exactly like their signature golf ball packages. 

The bottom of the box is wrapped in a neon lime camouflage pattern, and the top cover features the exact, embossed Vice logo colored in neon lime drip pattern as seen and felt on the brand’s golf ball packaging. The connection continues after lifting the lid and discovering an actual box of Vice Pro Drip Lime golf balls, with Adidas logos, sitting in its own compartment.

The Vice Golf Shoe from Adidas (plus one dozen Vice Pro Drip Lime X Adidas golf balls) costs $219.95 and is available to purchase from December 7, 2020, 11 AM EST at ViceGolf.com.

 

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