PingG30

Is this the best driver ever? The new Ping G30

Well this is a new one for me, I have thought in the past that only a pro can review a new golf club however I have recently revisited my opinion on this topic and after discussing it with a few customers and pros I work with in my North Berwick, East Lothian custom fitting studio I have decided that my view is valid and in some ways more applicable to the average golfer than a pro reviewing a new club.  Sure they can tell you what it does differently to the last club they used but can they truly comment on the forgiveness of a club or how it reacts to miss hits? I guess that’s for another discussion, so this time I am basing my comments on my swing and my game.

I hit my current driver pretty well and average 230 yards of carry distance.  I currently play off 10.5 but rarely does my driving cost me more than a couple of shots a round.  I have purchased this Ping G30 with my own money because that’s how strongly I believe that Ping have made a such great driver in the G30.  Ping say the G30 upto 50% more forgiving than some of its rivals.

I have chosen  the 9 degree head even though I was playing 12 degrees in my TaylorMade SLDR and would normally buy a 10.5 in any other brand. I went with the 9 due to earlier testing with the G25 which I found to be quite high launching, I also hoped that I could use my Accra CS1 60 M4 shaft which is a higher launching shaft from Accra. I found the CS1 a bit too high launch in my 12 degree SLDR which was another reason I went with 9 degrees in the G30.

All my testing so far has been on the course. Drivers are becoming very difficult to set up without launch monitor data but I wanted to put a few holes under my belt with the G30 and then later fine tune with the GC2 launch monitor in my North Berwick studio. I know what shafts work for me pretty well which is the only reason I decided to use this method.

First hit was great, good launch and very straight.  Second was a bit from the toe but finished only 10 yards behind the centre strike. The G30 is louder than my SLDR and again like most clubs you can hear when you have hit or missed the centre of the club face.  The distance with my first hit of G30 was the same as where I normally am with the SLDR. I didn’t really think I would pick up much distance with well hit shots over the TaylorMade but my reason for wanting to swap was purely based on forgiveness and the distance lost with the SLDR on my mis-hits. My bad shot with the driver is turning a fade into a slice when I try and really hit one hard, I found that a toe miss with the SLDR would slice, lose distance and often miss the fairway by a lot. Next hole – one left, one right trying to murder the ball before I had found any rhythm, my bad not the club. Onto the 16th, long dog leg right par 4, first ball smooth swing straight where I was aiming, decent high flight and plenty of roll out, about 265 yards total which is a good hit for me. More interesting than the pure strike was the second shot I hit, trying to give it a bit extra I caught it a bit near to the toe and it took off low and rightish. The difference was it stayed in the right side of the fairway and matched the distance of the pure centre strike due to it being down the right side of the dog left right. On the 18th, next par 4 and agreed it was about 1 club downwind but I still hit it high and straight down the middle, rolled out to about 280 yards and the furthest I have ever been down the 18th. I played a few more holes and at this early stage feel downwind this is longer than the SLDR and into the wind a tiny bit longer but only due to the forgiveness.

More testing will take place, I will try a couple of other shafts and I will confirm all my data on the launch monitor of the next few weeks but at this early stage I feel very positive about the Ping G30 and think that you should try one also.

Please drop me a line if you are looking at this club and I will happily discuss.

Adams Tight Lies fairway woods

This may at first glance to be an out of date post as Adams have just released images of the 2014 Adams Tight lies fairway woods and hybrids. 

 

AdamsTightLies 2014

I am an Adams golf fitting centre and have been recommending many customers in my North Berwick fitting studio to try the Tight Lies fairway woods.  I have in the past been a very poor fairway wood player.  I have tried 5 woods and low lofted hybrids as I struggle with launch angle with a conventional 15 degree 3 wood.  When I first received my demo clubs from Adams the 3 wood was one that I most wanted to work for me as I had a big gap between my driver and 19 deg hybrid.  The first thing that I found outstanding was how easy they were to use, for the first time in about four years a 3 wood went in my bag and this is the difference, it has stayed in past the honeymoon period.  I have fitted customers of all ages swing speeds and abilities into the Tight lies.  I did have concerns that this is a 16 degree 3 wood that is designed to launch higher than average but even on the outstanding Links of East Lothian and the best that the Scottish weather has thrown at me it has never been a problem.  As I said at the beginning Adams are about to release an updated version of the Tight Lies and I know that many people refuse to buy any product at full price so you can now grab a Tight Ties as well.

 

Bounce

Wedge, Bounce and play from 125 yards and in ?

I have been spending a lot of time focusing on my short game.  I recently moved to East Lothian and joined a club with amazing practice facilities and have been chipping and pitching most evenings.  I have learned a lot about the way I pitch and gained a lot of confidence.  I am new to links golf so am not really used to putting from too far off the green but with recent practice and confidence increased the putter is the last choice for me now.  Don’t get me wrong, I am quite a decent putter as I  practice putting everyday in my studio.  With the right technique and equipment you can also have more options around the green. I just feel that chipping will often be just as safe as putting through the fringe has its own risks.

I will start with equipment.  I think that the type of wedge you use around the green is often the fault of mishit chips.  I use Scor wedges.  Scor have a V sole which is low bounce on the leading edge and higher bounce on the trailing edge.  For low swing speed chipping low bounce means the club and slide under the ball easily and reduces the chance of a “thin”

You should really have a fitter or teaching pro assess your swing when you are choosing a wedge.  If you play with 3 or 4 wedges the most common selection would be PW, Gap Wedge( 50 degrees), Sand wedge ( 54 degrees) and lob wedge (58-60 degrees) or a 3 wedge system would be PW, Gap wedge at 52 degrees and a 56 degree sand wedge.  The reason I say get fitted for wedges is most wedge manufacturers offer wedges in different bounce (sole shapes)  Gap wedge would normally be mid bounce, 6-8 degrees.  Sand Wedge would traditionally have 10-14 degrees of bounce and lob wedge would be 4-12 degrees.  The quickest way to explain which one suits you is if you take big divots generally a high bounce wedge will work best for you, if you take little or no divot then then low bounce wedges are probably best.  This is rule of thumb so go and be fitted for them.  If you recently bought off the rack wedges that you are struggling with not all is lost.  I can adjust loft, lie angle and bounce (relative to loft) and even regrind the sole to your required specs and thats before we even look at if the shaft is right for you.

Wedge play can have a bigger impact on your score than driving so why not get yours checked out.

tour-edge-exotics-xcg-7-banner-cat

Tour Edge Exotics

I am proud to stock Tour Edge Exotics golf clubs at my North Berwick, East Lothian custom fitting studio.

Tour Edge was founded in 1985 by David Glod, as a former Golf Professional at Village Links Golf Club in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. David Glod really believed there was an opportunity in the golf industry to provide a high quality Golf Clubs at an affordable price.

In his mind there was no reason for the continuation in inflating prices that were overcoming the market. David’s vision was to change the Golfer’s perception of value and quality in golf clubs. He designed his first club in 1987 and has never looked back.

Their focus continues on the same path; Tour Edge will not waver from their promise of providing premium quality golf equipment that is affordable. As a top-10 manufacturer in every club category, Tour Edge continues to focus on product research and development, customer service, and customer satisfaction as the foundations to future growth.

They do not pay professionals to use their clubs, the Pros put them into their bag because they make a visible difference to their game, even if that means ditching the clubs they are paid to use by their sponsors. The clubs are chosen by lots of top professionals as they really perform and hit the ball a long way.

Tour Edge were the first company to experiment with titanium in their fairway woods and hybrids.  Tour Edge were claiming 30 yards longer than your current 3 wood years before the other OEM manufacturers were claiming it and for most people they delivered that extra distance.  In the US Tour Edge have a cult following for the fairway woods and this seasons drivers, the XCG7 and XCG7 beta have been getting great reviews and results in independent tests but don’t take their word for it call in and try them.  I carry XCG7 driver and 3 wood in both regular head and low launching low spinning beta head.  Tour Edge offer great options for shaft choice at no charge upgrades, Fujikura Fuel and fuel tour in the regular head and the Matrix white, red and  black tie in the beta head.  As a component account I can also custom fit you for a shaft of your choice as I can buy the head on it’s own which means you don’t pay for a shaft that doesn’t suit you just the one you are fitted for.

product_fig01

Nippon Golf shafts

I have added Nippon Golf  Shafts to my custom fitting line up this season in my North Berwick, East Lothian custom fitting studio.  Nippon have been making steel shafts for a long time,  They were making lightweight steel shafts in the 95g range when the norm was 130g.  They were always seen as a premium product.  They are built to premium tolerances but no longer carry the premium price tag.  this means that when I build them they all weigh the same and flex the same.   I have been testing 85g, 95g, 1050g and 1150g shafts.  I play sub 100g shafts so haven’t tested the heavier “Modus” shafts as they don’t fit my swing speed so don’t feel I can comment fairly on them.  Shaft feel is also very subjective so I won’t concentrate on the feel too much and more on quality of these shafts and how I selected my choice of shaft.  I knew that sub 100g shafts fitted my swing speed and tempo as I had played 95g graphite last season.  I built NS Pro 850, 950 and 1050 in both regular and stiff.  I started with the 950 in stiff as it was the nearest to my current choice of shaft.  I was hoping for some tighter dispersion and higher launch.  The Nippon NS950Pro stiff delivered both.  For me they feel amazing, you know when you hit them correctly and in my current Adams XTD X cavity irons I find them very forgiving on mishts aswell.  As I mentioned earlier explaining shaft feel is very subjective.  I would encourage anyone with sub 100mph driver swing speed to try them but would advise a comprehensive fitting for faster swing speed or quick tempo players.  Nippon have a shaft for you but be sure to be fit on a launch monitor with real balls to ensure the correct choice and really concentrate on your launch angle figures and spin.

xtd cross cav

Adams Golf #ownthesecondshot

Google+

I am please to offer the full 2014 Adams golf range from my North Berwick, East Lothian, Scotland custom fitting centre.  I have used Adams products over the last few seasons and have found them to consistently the easiest to use and best performing hybrid and fairway woods available.   This season they have added the new XTD Forged and XTD cross cavity irons to their lineup and Adams have really come up with two great sets of irons.  XTD forged suits the better player looking for that blade type look but with all the technology of cut through slot and floating face for increased ball speed.  Tungsten weights in the sole provide optimized GC location.

XTD_frgd-6

XTD Cross cavity irons.  An industry-first cross-cavity technology helps keep errant-struck shots on their proper path. Constructed for players of all skill levels, XTD irons boast a center of gravity (CG) moved off the face to generate gear effect similar to a hybrid. The result is corrective spin to straighten off-center hits. After contact, a face impact damper dramatically decreases vibration. Direct pressure on the back of the face produces the crisp sound of a forged iron, while some competitors use a simple badge. This also encourages players to drive through the shot.  I currently play these irons and have found them to launch high without ballooning and I have increased my carry distance by about 10 yards.

xtd cross cav

Over the coming weeks I will be adding reviews of the full Hybrid and Fairway wood line from adams so keep checking in.  Alternatively you can try them for yourself in my Custom Fitting Studio in North Berwick, East Lothian, Scotland.

 

IMG_3948

What is the difference with custom built clubs?

Google+

Well this is a question I often get.  I think some people think custom built means you get to choose colours of grips and the paint in the numbers on the clubs.  Those can all be true but custom fitted golf clubs are clubs that are custom fitted to your requirements.  When you are custom fitted I look at a number of parameters when you are hitting balls in my indoor studio and from the numbers the launch monitor data gives me I am able to filter out certain club heads and shaft combinations until we find the best performing club for you.  Once the best head and shaft is found the custom building begins.  I measure each demo club I use for length, weight, shaft frequency and loft and lie.  This ensures that the clubs you buy perform the same as the club you tested.

When I assemble the club I write a spec sheet.  This allows me to record all the data about the clubs I am building, it also is a record of what I have built in case of a lost club or for reference when looking for proven head and shaft combinations.  I build 1 club at a time starting with length of the shaft.  I dry assemble the club to check firstly shaft frequency.  Once that is correct, I then trim to length.  Then the club in trimmed to length I then check the swing weight of the club.  Only when I am happy with the data from the assembly stages is the club set to one side and the next club in the set is dry assembled.  There may also be a lie angle stage added into the dry assembly stage as lie angle can affect the swingweight of an iron.  When the full set is dry assembled special golf club assembly epoxy (not araldite) is mixed and the clubs glued together.

I am writing this post as most of the major OEM are offering custom fitting.  Yes they offer you a choice of heads and shafts and find the best loft and lie angle for you some even offer a selection of grips but it’s the assembly of the clubs where a club builder really come into their own.  I often see clubs that customers tell me they were custom fitted for nowhere near the specifications they ordered.  While the components ordered are correct the way the factory assembles your clubs and the way I do are often two very different procedures.

If you are struggling with equipment that you were custom fitted for but has been factory assembled bring it in for inspection, it doesn’t take long to check the specifications and establish what needs doing to get you playing better again.  Or if you would like to be custom fitted and have hand assembled clubs call in for a chat.

photo 1 photo 2 photo 3

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 971 other followers