3 Secrets to Choosing The Right Wedge Shaft
One of the driving concepts behind the formation of EIDOLON Golf was the complete lack of attention to shafts by the major wedge brands. I’m an old Hogan fan, and Mr. Hogan always said the golf club was “90% shaft and 10% how it goes through the dirt”. In all respect, I think those numbers change a little when we’re talking wedges, because the sole is so much a part of the formula (another EIDOLON advantage with our patented V-SOLE). But there’s no question the shaft is just as important in your wedges as your driver and irons.

As a custom wedge builder, EIDOLON offers shaft options that you do not find on the retail displays, so we get lots of questions about the subject. This week I picked Dwight Cheu as our winner for his battery of questions about choosing wedge shafts. Dwight asked if his wedges should be shafted to match his new custom irons, and wanted to know more about the Rifle Spinner, which is the premium wedge shaft we use at EIDOLON.

Well, let’s start with an examination of what we’re asking our wedge shaft to do. First of all, it has to give us the shot trajectory we are looking for on our full swing shots, just like any other club. So that would mean it should be of a flex matched to our irons, right? Well, not exactly. You see, with the heavier head weights of our wedge heads, the shaft has to have a stiff enough tip to help prevent the head from getting ahead of the shaft through impact and producing “ballooning” trajectories.

But then the wedge shaft also has to have enough “movement” to give us the feel we need to execute scoring shots around the greens, when our clubhead speed might be not much faster than a long approach putt. When I say “feel”, I’m not talking about the sensation of impact, but what the physics guys call “motion feedback”. This is the sensation to and through your hands of the motion the head is making – where is it, what attitude is it in, how far back, how fast is it moving, etc. This is a quality that can only be optimized if the shaft has the ability to flex at least a little on these short shots.

So, this presents quite a dilemma for the golfer, especially when the major brands of wedges in the retail display all are fitted with the same old Dynamic® Gold® “wedge” flex shaft, which we know to be too stiff and too heavy for the vast majority of golfers. If you really want to spike up your short game, re-shafting your wedges (or getting some custom built for you) is a great way to do it. Here’s how you should approach the process in three steps:
1. Match the weight of your wedge shafts to your irons. Your goal is to get a “seamless” transition of balance and overall weight as you progress from your short irons to your wedges. If you play graphite shafts in your irons and off-the-rack wedges, your first wedge might be as much as a full ounce and a half heavier than your shortest iron. This just isn’t going to promote great wedge play.

2. Match material to your iron shafts. If you are accustomed to the feel of graphite in your irons, for example, a steel wedge shaft is going to give you a “disconnect” in the clubs where you need feel the most. At EIDOLON, we always recommend that our customers choose the SCoR graphite shaft if they play graphite shafts in their irons. In fact, we are huge believers that high quality carbon fiber (“graphite”) shafts promote better shotmaking for any golfer, because carbon fiber has so much superior “motion feedback” qualities than a shaft of tubular steel. I’ve personally played graphite in my wedges for several years, and every golfer who I demo them to (which are numerous) immediately raves about the feel.

3. Select a shaft flex that closely approximates that of your irons. But we are not fans of an exact match of the shaft in your irons, because of the vast range of clubhead speed where you will be using your wedges. Our own variation of the Rifle Spinner and our SCoR graphite shafts are both engineered to ensure adequate tip stiffness to serve full swings, but suitable flex in the upper part of the shaft to give you that feel around the greens when clubhead speed is greatly reduced. Generally speaking, however, you’ll find better short game success if you closely match your wedge shafts to your iron flex. That’s why we offer the Rifle Spinner in Firm and Regular flexes and our SCoR graphite in Firm, Regular and Ladies/Seniors flexes.
So, if you want to spike your short game this season, I highly recommend you give some attention to your wedge shafts. And there are a couple of ways to do just that. Either have a qualified clubfitter re-shaft yours with a shaft that more closely approximates that of your irons, or have one or more new wedges custom built to specs that will suit you better.

I’m confident either approach will improve your short game immediately.

Shameless Plug for EIDOLON
Remember, we’ll build you a wedge to try with no risk. If you don’t like it, just return it and we’ll buy you any other wedge on the market you think you’d like better. You won’t even be out the shipping cost.

Oh, and if you click on the link on this page to visit us, you’ll also get a $10 discount because you are a Wedge Guy and oobgolf reader.
The Wedge Guy is sponsored by SCOR Golf, where Terry Koehler is President/CEO. He encourages you to submit your questions or topics to be considered for his columns on Tuesdays and Fridays. Each submission automatically enters you to win a SCOR4161 wedge to be given away monthly. Click the button below to submit your question or topic today.


[ comments ]
ryohazuki222 says:
All I can say is I started playing off the rack, cheap wedges. I'm a tall guy..... I customized some irons... then a wedge.

I'm not sure whether it's the change in length/lie, the change in club (to the Z TP 54.10), the shaft (Rifle Spinner 5.5), the grips (or built up grip-size) or a recipe of it all..... but the club truly feels amazing.

--This would be my plug for the Rifle Spinner shaft :)
4/7/09
 
Tim Horan says:
Terry, you have always been a critic of the DG wedge shaft, citing that it is heavy and rigid. What are your views on the really heavy wedges like "Momentum"? They seem to work for some people. I know that I felt more positive with my Kane wedges (physically heavy with 130g shafts and weighing in at just over 450g)than I ever did with my Vokeys with the DG wedge shafts. I have got to say here that I now play Eidolons with the Rifle Spinner shafts and I am getting good results.
4/8/09
 
wedgeguy says:
There are lots of options on shafts, but I just think that off-the-rack wedges with the DG "wedge" flex are not a good fit for most golfers. Our theory is that you should try to achieve a "seamless" weight transition from your irons to your wedges and then have a flex that works for your game.
4/8/09
 
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Terry Koehler is "The Wedge Guy" and President of SCOR Golf- The Short Game Company.

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