New Wedges And A Hangover

Hello again everyone… nice to be back after the big birthday party last night. I survived but I am paying for it now! Stupid Jack Daniels… it tastes so good at the time but it makes the next day a tough one! Let’s get to some news and some emails…

First email from a reader looking for some new wedges without blowing the bank… no problem. There are lots of good wedges for under $50.00 as long as you know what you are looking for. One of my favorite ones is the Wilson Harmonized. My dad has a few of these and they actually are really nice. They are a very traditional looking club and are available in a few different finishes. Wilson is also clearing out the Dyna-Powered wedges now and they are a good one for the price. There are tons of wedges out there but I like the Wilson ones for the money… just my two cents. So what do you look for when buying wedges? I like to map out a customer’s set… find out what they have now and see where there are gaps that need to be filled. Find out what your pitching wedge is at (usually between 45-48 degrees) and then decide how many wedges you want to get. Let’s say you have a 45 degree pitching wedge and want to add two wedges to your set. The highest that most people will go is 60 degrees… I’m not a huge fan of 64 degree wedges… kind of useless if you ask me. Then do the math… you have a 45 and want to go to cover up to 60… that’s 15 degrees by two wedges… so you will have a 7 degree gap and a 8 degree gap. You could do a 52 degree gap wedge and a 60 degree lob wedge and cover everything off pretty well. There are all sorts of things to consider when buying wedges but most people will match their wedge shafts to their irons… steel irons means steel wedges. Don’t be as concerned about matching flex… most people like softer flexes in their wedges but that is a personal thing. I like blade wedges… they provide a bit more feel and they are better for working the ball. Cavities help with forgiveness but how often do you really miss hit a wedge? Hopefully not lots! I have never been a fan of wedges that match sets of irons. I still don’t know how some people can hit a bulky Callaway Big Bertha lob wedge. Why not try a Callaway Forged instead? To each his own I guess. I get lots of questions about bounce too. Most players are fine using wedges with standard bounce… that is, the most common bounce for each degree. You can get really technical with bounce… when you start to look at a person’s swing and the course conditions that they face on a daily basis but it doesn’t really matter for most people. Work on getting it out of a bunker before worrying about matching bounce to the sand conditions… or better yet… don’t go in the bunker to begin with! Thanks for the email.

Another email from a regular reader concerning his new driver. He went with the Cleveland Launcher 460 with an Aldila NV shaft and just loves it! Good to hear. The reason I brought this up is that he mentioned something in his email that I have been wanting to talk about. He talked about some of his older drivers and how they were harder to hit. He started to realize that he was wasting his time and money on clubs that really weren’t for him. “Why do I want to make things more complicated for myself? I’m not here to work the ball, I want to hit the thing far and straight”, he thought. He went and got a driver that would do just that and he is thrilled with the results. I wish more people would do this. If you are buying a car you might stop and think about what it will be used for. Maybe you only need it to go to and from work. You might get something small and something that is good on gas… but you’re not going to go out and get a helicopter. I had four different people in the shop last week asking about the TaylorMade R7 Quad TP… an awesome driver for a great player. One problem… these guys weren’t great players. They hit a few for me and they all had bad swings with low swing speeds. I showed them more forgiving drivers but they were all stuck on the TP. Why? Get something that works for you… you’ll be much happier with the results. Buy a Cobra SZ and I’ll give you the TaylorMade TP headcover… then you can impress all the guys at the club and actually improve your game. You’re not Tiger Woods… you’re John Woods… a person that plays a few times a week and wants to have fun. Don’t make it hard on yourself!

A question about fitted hats… where to find them and that kind of thing. There are more fitted hats out every year but I find they sell in a hurry. I saw the new Adidas/TaylorMade one that is coming out and it is really nice. It has the Adidas logo on the front, with “R7″ on one side and “TaylorMade” on the other. You should see this one in stores soon.

Thanks for the email with the pictures of the new TaylorMade stuff that we mentioned last week. We should see the new products on the TaylorMade website this week and in stores soon.

A question about the new Cleveland CG4 and where it falls into the line. Cleveland’s current iron line looks something like this… CG1 for the low handicapper, the CG2 for a low handicap, the CG4 (replacing the TA7) for the mid handicapper looking for some forgiveness, and the Launcher for the high handicapper looking for a lot of game improvement. The TA2 is a great iron at a great price right now… our reader is after something with some forgiveness but without a lot of offset and the TA2 would be a great one to try. I don’t think the CG4 is what you are after (too much offset for you I think) and I’d jump on a set of TA2’s if I were you. Thanks for the email!

A question about Phil Mickelson’s putter. I don’t think Callaway has any plans to release a putter like his anytime soon but it wouldn’t surprise me if they did eventually. His ball (HX Tour 56) and his driver (Fusion FT) will be available in June and they released his irons a while back.

Tour Edge Golf has entered the carbon driver game with the new Bazooka Carbon 460 driver. The name pretty much says it all… 460CC with a carbon crown. The four piece driver will be available in both “neutral” and “draw” versions. Tour Edge also teamed up with Fujikura to make the shaft. You should see the Carbon 460 in stores very soon.

I think that’s it for now… thanks again for all the emails and all the support. We’ll keep typing if you keep coming back! Talk to you tomorrow.

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