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Death of the 1-Iron

May. 5, 2005     By     Comments (51)

Golfers choosing fairway woods and hybrid clubs are overlooking the 1-iron, making it obsolete on store shelves and golfer's bags.

1-IronThe 1-iron, also known as the driving iron, is becoming extinct. Golfers opting for the latest hybrids and fairway metals are leaving their 1-irons at home, not trusting the club's ability to get the ball in the air. Are there any golfers who still use this club?

Joey Sindelar, PGA tour pro, finally did the unthinkable. He removed his 1-iron, a Tommy Armour 845, from his bag at the MCI Heritage after 15 years of service. "I'm a very stodgy, slow-to-move, dumber-than-a-rock kind of guy. I'm very slow to change clubs," Sindelar said. "But this had to happen."

Although missing the cut at the MCI, it wasn't because of his 1-iron. His replacement club, a hybrid, "failed miserably," but he's going to keep using it, stashing the club that won him the Wachovia Championship last year.

More forgiving clubs like the new hybrids still produce similar shots to the infallible 1-iron, but the club, aka the "butter knife", requires a special touch of speed and power which, when in competition, may be too much of a risk to take.

However, the driving iron has made many a player into a legend. Ben Hogan's famous 1-iron shot to the 18th green at Merion to win the 1950 U.S. Open remains one of the most memorable shots in golf.

Jack Nicklaus has secured several major victories using his trusty 1-iron. At the 1967 U.S. Open at Balustrol, he needed a birdie to tie Hogan's record and got it, his 1972 win at Pebble Beach hitting the stick on the 17th won him that event and at the 1975 Masters defeat over Tom Weiskopf, Nicklaus used the club to almost double eagle.

"I would say that probably the best shots that I've played in golf, and the ones I remember the most, have been 1-iron shots" Nicklaus thoughfully remembered.

Ping doesn't even push it's 1-iron anymore. "We used to have a lot of single orders for those because they were easy to hit relative to what was out there" said a Ping rep. "They were a mini-category, the predecessor to the hybrid in a way. Obviously, it's not a big part of our iron offering any more."

But, you can still find 1-irons on sale at the local thrift store… just ask TST writer Josh Premuda…

The butt of many a joke, the "butter knife" is slowly being stashed in garages and taken out of golf bags all over the world.

As Lee Trevino quipped once as lightning approached during a round, "Even God can't hit a 1-iron."

Posted in: Clubs Comments (51)

Discussion

  1. Gary Moore says:

    I recently bought an Adams GT Tour 1-iron for a bargain price. (I also bought the companion 2-iron from this set.) I like the accuracy and, although I am not sure of the exact loft, in terms of carry distance it fills a gap between my strong (13-deg) 3 wood and my 17-deg 4 wood. I found this club to be effective, but the rub is that one has to have a higher swing speed ( I swing over 105 mph) and a stiff (True Temper S-300 or Rifle 6.0) shaft to make it truly useful.

  2. Ethan says:

    It's really sad that the 1-iron is becoming extinct, the club is the straightest shooting club in the bag in my opinion. And plus, only decent golfers could hit with it, it gave me a fealing of pride when I nailed my first 1-iron shot

  3. Gary Moore says:

    As a follow up to my previous post, I have since acquired a used 15-deg Nike Slingshot and a 14-deg Taylormade Mid Rescue TP hybrid as well as a Tommy Armour 1 iron that is so old that is has a boron shaft. A side-by-side comparison on the range showed that the traditional-style 1 irons have an edge on accuracy, at least for me. I also found it easier to vary the trajectory with the old-style irons. The hybrids might be good trouble clubs to hit out of the rough, but if I'm playing a course that has narrow fairways or long par-3 holes, or if it is particularly windy, I'd rather have a 1 iron in my bag.

  4. Michael says:

    My golf instructor has a collection of old clubs in his training facility and i saw an old callaway big bertha 1 iron, curios i set of a ball on the mat. Not expecting me to hit it very well( mainly because of Trevino's "Not even God can hit a one iron comment"), i hit it straighter and than my 14.5 wood and only 15 yards horter, i wish i could get my hands on a one iron with some more modern technology.

  5. bob willingham says:

    i have played a one iron for 15 years. i carry a driver only for looks. i hit it as long as other people hit a driver. i struggle with the driver but i wish i could hit it.

  6. DLT says:

    Taking up the game in earnest again after limited play for 20 years, I switched from my old Hogan Apex PC's to Titleist 735s. My Hogans, still in the garage, are 1-E, and there's no doubt that a flushed 1-iron is the most satisfying shot there is.

    The sad thing is, I really miss being able to hit a low screamer on demand - the 735 long irons have a very high trajectory. I had a large tree in my line the other day and no club in my bag I could hit low enough to go under the limbs.

  7. Paul Bechtold says:

    The facts surrounding the 1-iron are somewhat tainted by urban legend and myth as well as a few changes in equipment in general that are not talked about. First, lets talk about the club that Nicklaus used to hit the 238-yard shot to the final green of the 1967 U.S. Open. It had a loft of around 19 degrees and a shaft length of either 39 or 40-1/4" long. With the evolution of club lengthening and loft strengthening, that is todays 3-iron in many tour player's bags. If we would have left the irons alone in terms of loft and length and not sold clubs based on distance potential, there would be no difficulty in "getting it up" with the 1-iron. Second, the 1-iron is appropriate for the power hitter - i.e. Nelson, Hogan, Snead, Nicklaus, Weiskopf, Norman, and certain playing conditions for the better player in general. It is also a superior club from an accuracy stanpoint for the stronger player and the reason Nicklaus cited for it preference over the 4-or 5-wood in general. There has been a bunch of bunk written about spin rate of the new ball being lower and the ball not getting up as easily. While some of this may be true, I have hit many Top Flite and Pinnacle range balls very well and nice and high with a 1-iron and they do not have as high a spin rate as a Prov1.
    Let's recognize the value of the 1-iron at times for it's place in the bag just as we do a 5- and 7-wood, the lob wedge, the hybrid club, and other specialty clubs. The true complete player no longer can carry the same clubs at every tournament as the likes of a Nicklaus did in his day on the PGA Tour.
    I've got a great idea: Why don't we do with irons and what Jesse Ortiz did with the first Tri-Metal clubs - put the loft of the club on the sole to identify the club. In other words the 1-iron can now be called a 17-iron! Utlimately that (plus the length) ar what determine the distance and trajectory for an individual.

  8. Dave says:

    Irecently pulled out the old 1 iron from the first set of clubs my Dad bought me back in the 70's. Even back then, it was an old used club. It's called a "Burke" "Driving Iron" and its handle is old and warn and cracking and the head is all scratched and has some rust and corrosion. In spite of all that it actually served me nicely on a cold windy and gusty day this past week. I'm not a very good player and am learning a new swing, but I was still able to hit the thing decently. One one hole I compared it with my driver, hitting both the 1 iron and the driver off the tee (since the course was empty), and it flew further and straighter than my driver shot which got stacked up in the wind. Then on another shot from the rough, under a low tree with only 5 feet of clearance and 220 yards to the hole I whacked the ball 200 yards straight at the green into the wind. I couldn't have done that with a fairway wood. So I was pretty pleased with it. To be fair I also hit some clunkers with it in other spots, but I'm not a good golfer and I have a fair amount of mishits with every club in the bag. To get the power and lift I rely on the pendulum effect where the club head snaps through and past impact instead if trying to muscle it. That seems to give plenty of oomph to get the ball up and out there with the 1 iron.

  9. 68andcounting says:

    I put my 1-iron back in the bag 2 years ago and it within 30 rounds or so my handicap was back at a 3.3 index from a a 6.something. Quite simply, I had fallen victim to the testosterone in my body and gone to the 400cc+ driver insanity. Sure, bombed it, but was coming out of the trees a lot! When you get to low single digits it's darn hard to lower your index a single point. I lost about 15-20 yards off the tee by going to the 1-iron, but it did something for me. For one I can hit it off 14 holes and it gave me great familiarity with one club to tee off with every time rather than going from driver to 3 wood. Secondly, my accuracy went through the roof. What I lost in distance I gained in short grass as I am mad to miss 2 fairways a round now. Thirdly, it allowed me to dump my 3-wood and added a much needed 60 degree to my bag.

    For me anyway, dropping my ego at the door took my golf to a new level.

  10. Kling says:

    Only one out of every 250 pros still carries a 1 iron, hybrids truely have killed it. When I was on the golf team they all laughed at me, but when I started to get on par 5's in 2 while most had to lay up, the laughter faded. I can't use a wood off a fairway and hybrids don't seem to work for me either. Yes it does take some work to use it, but when my driver isn't working I can always fall back on it. It's one club I refuse to give up.

  11. DLT says:

    Only one out of every 250 pros still carries a 1 iron, hybrids truely have killed it. When I was on the golf team they all laughed at me, but when I started to get on par 5's in 2 while most had to lay up, the laughter faded. I can't use a wood off a fairway and hybrids don't seem to work for me either. Yes it does take some work to use it, but when my driver isn't working I can always fall back on it. It's one club I refuse to give up.

    For 'fun', I recently played a few rounds with my old Hogan Apex's, 1-Iron included. I wish I could say I was able to re-live my youth with a few solid 1-Irons, but it was not to be - I'm just not that good any more.

    One club I have added that you might take a look at is a Callaway FT-3 1-H Hybrid, which is 14 degrees. Off the tee, a good strike goes about 240 with a medium-low trajectory. Off the fairway, it hits real bullets, though most of the time I go with a 3-H because more loft is called for. Very solid feel, and workable.

  12. Sad Golfer says:

    I've never been too serious about playing, but I always have fun, and now I am getting a little better, and as a result more serious. It's so frustrating that no one makes 1 or for that matter 2 and even 3 irons anymore. I just cannot hit fairway woods or hybrids. For every 1 decent shot I hit off the fairway with a wood or hybrid, I hit 30 bad ones. Off the tee, no problem, but I don't hit my driver more than 250 yards(I'm not a very large individual haha) so there is never a need for me to use a 3 or 5 wood off the tee. I also don't buy the whole "easier to hit" or "more forgiving" nonsense that is always pitched about hybrids or fairway woods, and these new irons with the big, wide bottoms. Unless the ball is hit absolutely perfect off the grass, which never happens for me, the bottom of the club hits the ground, skips up and tops the ball sending it squibbing into the water or out of bounds. I hate it. With a traditional iron, if I hit early I may take a large divot but at least the ball will go up and generally straight, if not very far. My 3 and 4 irons are the best clubs in my bag. After my last round I have vowed to never again use a hybrid or fairway wood, and as a result they are collecting dust in my bag until I find a used 1 and 2 iron somewhere. I would like to be able to get a modern 1 and 2, with graphite shafts, nice grips and the like, but I guess I'll have to settle for an old steel shafted relic. Please someone, make a new 1+2!!

  13. DLT says:

    Hi Sad,

    It sounds like your swing is pretty steep. Likely you take deep divots. These clubs do require more of a sweep. I know what you mean about being attached to your long irons - as a kid we used to play 1-club late in the day. My club of choice was a 4-iron. A true 1-iron is a very tough customer, but satisfying if hit well. Try E-Bay.

  14. Nicklaus Fan says:

    What made me want to play golf in the first place was watching Jack hit long irons a mile in the air. I thought then, and still do, that a high 1-iron is the most majestic shot in golf. So I guess I have a sentimental attachment to my 1-iron.
    All emotional appeal aside, long irons are very effective weapons when used properly. Because they generate less spin than a hybrid, they're straighter and of course roll farther when hit low. If you've got the clubhead speed to get them up in the air, the wind won't affect the ball flight at that trajectory the same as it will a hybrid shot. They're much easier to work left or right into tough pins or on dogleg tee shots. And by god do they feel good when you pure one!
    You don't need to get a forged blade 1-iron to experience the benefits. I play a Macgregor JNP forged cavity 1-iron, and it's plenty forgiving.

  15. matt says:

    i would feel naked without my ngc 12.5 driving iron, i also carry a 18* 2 iron. theres just something so satisfing hitting a 1 iron 250 off the tee. ive had some much more than that, but can count on 250, never trusted a 3 wood when $$$ are involved...m

  16. double par says:

    I sometimes use a golden ram tour grind 1 iron because i like it when i can take a 100 yard shot from behind a tree with not even a foot of clearence as my name implies i'm not a great golfer but i think when i get better i'd pay to get a very good 1 iron

  17. Ramon Santos says:

    Some of my most memorable shots have been with 1 irons. I must say that I was pretty versatile with that club. I could hit it high or low, cut or draw. I was most consistent hitting the popular bladed 75 yarder. Sometimes I would neck it into position on long par fives just to make my third shot a little more challenging. Oh, and let's not forget the toed/smother shot. When I did catch it flush, I'd have to yell "Fore!" toward the next tee box while my buddies lay crying with laughter on the green. Yes, they were already on the green when I discovered that my first 1 iron shot was flushed out of bounds. That was memorable because I never ever flushed the 1 iron on consecutive shots. I just can't bring myself to part with that club. Too many of those fond memories and who knows what the future holds.

  18. 1-Iron says:

    I have been playing golf for 15 years and my set is a TaylorMade Tour Preferred T-D. Quite classic set.
    The technology of this clubs is that from SW to 5 iron you have regular forged blades, then from 4 to 1 the club heads are still forged but hollow, making them easier to play. Some kind of 15years in advance hybrid. Longer irons are then easier to hit and the trajectory is low, lots of roll.

    That is to say my 1-iron is a MUST. I have never been able to hit a wood though my handicap is a single figure. I built my golf around accuracy of my shots, short games and putt. In that sense the 1-iron is THE club to tee-off.

    In competition people are always amazed of my bag that contains no woods :) so what... I am always on the fairway, and competitors more often in rough or woods.

    The tendency last 10 past years, from the coming of the big bertha has been to "the bigger the better"... out of bounds on the course.

    How many times on the driving ranges have you seen baseball-like golf players practicing their first shots with their 1 litre wood to finally reach the far 100 yards that you could do with your 7-iron. This just to hear it sound like an empty Coke can, for 300 bucks...

    Eventually people tend to play in a single manner, drive 250 yards, then wedge on the green. if you hit twice your 3-iron or go for a 1-iron then 8-iron it is still 2 shots but quite more accurate...

    Anyway, people's game is today dictated by the marketing and Tiger's fashion. Just remember that Jack Nicklaus rarely used drivers and 3-woods and made the par anyway. The pars have never been lowered in the last 50 years or courses being longer.

    With this I wish you good training with your #1

    Cheers ;)

  19. Dveronda, San Diego, ca. says:

    I play a 1 iron off the tee almost 100% of the time. It keeps me in the fairway and I'm a good iron hitter so I can punch it out 220 250. I'm 61 years old also. If I can keep it in the fairway my mid/short irons will get me to the green in two. (best case senario). But I've played a set of hogan irons for twenty years and I know them well. I love and trust them. I don't know about all the new equipment. I suppose, if you want to believe that you will play better with the latest and greatest then go ahead, but I don't think you will find better materials and workmanshipp in the old time club makers. Hogan for one. He and his company were absolute quality and design.
    I think a lot of these 'forgiveness' clubs make you a lousy golfer, you play down to your potential. Play some blades, you will improve your game.

  20. Jay says:

    :sad: Where oh where can I get my hands on a Wilson Deep Red 1 iron. Tried E-bay , online golf stores, sport chat rooms and zippo.

    I have the hybrids, 3 wood, 4 wood and 5 wood but I cant keep them any where near as straight or accurate as my 3 iron. I can bomb this iron (200 yards with a bit of run) and I reckon with a 1 iron - getting on to the par 5's in two is in the bag.

  21. Paul C says:

    Your comments have secured my feelings and faith about the 1-iron. Thank you. I don't remember who made my 1-iron driver, it was a straight shooter, but I remember the day I broke it on a hard fairway 8 years ago. While looking for a replacement, my friends talked me into "stepping up my game with a driver"... My game hasn't been consistent ever since. From that day on, I struggled through expensive lessons, and 6 different expensive drivers. High lofted, high speed, right turns sometimes behind the tee box were the results 20% of the time. I never saw the straight long shots of my 1-iron again.
    My driver hasn't left my bag in the last two rounds I've played. I'm back in the fairways again, and thanks to my "driver" days my short game has been stepped up. I have also been out driving my foursome fairly regurally the last two times out, with my straight shooting TPS 3-iron. (best so far about 225yds) wait till they meet my slightly used $19 eBay PING 1-iron. Thanks all!

    *Parting thought "Why would you hit something round (the ball), with something else that was round (the driver face), and expect it to go straight?"

  22. HP Golf says:

    Wow!!!! Thank all of you so much. I am going to get a one iron. This seems to be a weapon that has been destroyed by a myth. Through a lot of practice I have become a good ball striker, and wanted to take the driver out of my bag and replace it with a strong 3 wood with a longer shaft. You guys have convinced me since we are basically hitting 1 irons any way with the lofts of irons now days. Thanks again and Merry Christmas and a Happy Golfing New Year. :wink:

  23. lousygolfer says:

    I am a beginner and really have a hard time using a driver so i have been using my 2 and 3 irons and have done almost well with it. I just left our local golf shop and they have a used 1 iron for 10.00 and now i think i am going to walk back over there and get it. Thank you for your responses

  24. highshool golfer says:

    I played a half way decent game of golf in high school mostly bogy and par golf. I Used a 1 iron and a 2iron probably more than any other clubs in the bag. I took off 9 to10 years away from the game and had only recently started playing regularly. I haven’t even been able to brake a 100 on my local course. I’ve been playing with woods and hybrids on the fairway. I spend almost half the time in the ruff. I been trying to figure out what was so different about by game.
    This last month I went to a course with my dad . He had a three handicap when I was living at home. I was reluctant to play knowing I would be embarrassed. After the first whole my dad mentioned I would probably play better if I quit using the graphite drivers and woods . He noticed that when I swung the club they bent before impact casing the ball to spin and fade to the right. After I began using a metal shafted Taylormade 3 wood and my irons. My game improved drastically in one day. Since I’ve pulled out my old Pinseeker 1 iron and an old 2 iron and put them back in my bag. The ball is now in the fairway most of the time and I’m playing around 20 strokes better on average (in the upper 80’s).

  25. Tucker says:

    I just got back from the range and hit my Wilson Staff 1 iron 240 or so yards virtually pin straight. I'm not a great golfer, you just have to swing fully and when that sweet spot is hit there is no other feeling like it.

    I think golf is pretty messed up these days. Imagine if in pro baseball they used giant gas filledn metal bats. Rediculous.

  26. Robert says:

    I was watching the Golf Channel last night and they were talking about the 10 greatest shots of all time. The 1 iron came up. I was lamenting over the loss of mine. I had loaned my clubs to a "friend" and he never brought my golf clubs back. Funny thing is I was walking around our local Thrift store today at lunch and low and behold there was 1 iron sitting right there staring at me. It is now in the back seat of my car and will be lovingly stashed in my bag when I get back to the house today.

  27. EKim says:

    I am a high handicap 23. Got frustrated with my driver yesterday and put it away and hit nothing but my 4 iron off the tee on the 4s and 5s for the back. Had an outstanding back nine (six strokes better than the front). Going to go out this weekend and try it for an entire 18 and see what my score turns out to be.

  28. Scott says:

    I've just aquired a Howdon Driving Iron, D1, with a grapite shaft. Being fairly new to golf I asked when I should use it. Looking at the rust around the edges I'd say it's been sat around in a bag for a while. So when the previous owner shrugged I guessed I should find out more. Reading the above has made me put it in the boot with my drivers, yes I have 2 drivers as I am 1 shot in 10 straight with a driver. This will get a trip to the driving range tomorrow, it's Fathers Day!

    I really hope the it shows me something positive!.

    Fingers crossed :lol:

  29. Tony Vasquez says:

    I'm a +2, not even Tiger plays a 1-iron any more. That should tell you something. I turned mine in when the pro balls started to fly lower. The greens I play, fast and firm, demand a higher shot than a 1-iron can produce.

    Also, a 1-iron is too short off the tee for the long courses I play. I can hit driver, 3 wood, or choked 3 wood off every tee, no problem. 14 clubs - no 1-iron - 15 clubs - maybe. There are courses and conditions where a 1-iron would be the stick, but if you're not at least scratch, forget about it! Play a 5-wood, much higher shot and better out of the rough.

    Today's balls and greens have killed the #1, not anything else. Good luck.

  30. Dave says:

    Mr. Vasquez articulates some good arguments against the 1-iron, and I am definitely not a scratch golfer, so maybe I should heed his advice and not use it. However, if there is no point in having a 1-iron, why have a 2, 3 or 4 iron either? If certain conditions or situations demand a 2 or 3, then a more extreme form of whatever those conditions or situations are would seem to demand a 1-iron, no? What about high wind conditions off a fairway on a long par 5? I recall Tiger saying that he "roasted a 2 iron" shot at the British Open a year or two ago (meaning he "crushed it" in a good way. Presumably he used it because of windy conditions typical at the British Open courses. Why not "roast a 1-iron" if the conditions warrant? What about a situation where your ball is under a big, tree with low hanging branches and you have a long way to go to the hole? Do you lay up with a short shot back on to the fairway or do you go for it with a 200+ yard bullet with the 1 iron? :twisted: Also, if today's fancy hybrids produce shots as accurate and controllable as an iron, and also are easier to hit than irons, why have any irons? Why don't they just make a full set of hybrids up through a 9? There must be something that makes an iron better than a hybrid if you have the skills to use it right, or else all irons would become extinct, not just the 1 iron.

  31. Dave says:

    I located Tiger's quote about "roasting" a 2-iron. He was speaking of his birdie on the 248 yard par-3 16th hole at Carnoustie:

    "Of his birdie on 16, he said, 'I just roasted a 2-iron to the front edge. I had about a 100-footer there. Just made a nice shoulder turn and released it and it went in the hole.'"

    Source: http://www.golf.com/golf/tours_news/article/0,28136,1645088,00.html

    Okay, so we're not all going to sink 100 foot putts like Tiger, but if he thought a 2-iron was warranted in the rough, windy conditions of Carnoustie, maybe a 1-iron makes sense in similar circumstances.

  32. leafsfan says:

    I'm a high handicapper who has struggled hitting the fairway off the tee. I hit my irons (Callaway Hawkeye Titanium's with firm flex graphite shafts) very well, and often resorted to using my 5 iron off the tee. Recently, I bought the matching 1 iron on eBay for $35. Best $35 I've ever spent. I wish I could get back the $$$ I paid for my driver and 3 wood that now collect dust in the garage.

  33. MikeTimbers says:

    I carry a driver, persimmon 3 and 5 woods and a Big Bertha 1-iron. Call me a traditionalist but I love the feel of the persimmons and the flexibility of my 1-iron. I can hit it pretty well and on hard fast British fairways a 1-iron goes miles. have you never played a chip-and-run from 200 yards ;)

  34. Dave says:

    I have been playing off and on since April 1971. As a 13 year-old punk, I developed my swing during the Nicklaus years. I watched him hit that ball a mile high and I knew the higher it went, the farther downrange it would fall. I became a high-ball hitter with both irons and woods, much to the amazement and frustration of my dad. The trick to smacking a 1-iron is to swing the club to make it hit the ball while the clubhead is coming down. You want to more or less drive the clubhead into the grass directly UNDER the ball-- not directly behind the ball. That's a "chili dip" waiting to happen. I hit the 1-stick by "stabbing" the ball with the butt of the club from the top of the backswing. This gives you the "late" hit-- the kind of swing that unloads its energy right when your hands are over the ball or slightly ahead. Of course, a proper hip slide and swinging from the left shoulder is expected without even asking. The 1-iron does take practice. I think people hate/fear it because they look up when hitting it. They see that near-vertical face and panic. You gotta keep your head down and chin out of the way. Make a full turn, swing under control, swing through the ball, finish high. You'll love what you get...

  35. Brian says:

    Also the fact that we no longer use balata or wound golf balls anymore plays another factor. Those balls spun a great deal and allowed for shots with a 1-iron to rise. But today with balls meant to spin lower and go farther, it is unlikely you will see similar launch conditions. With todays balls you would need a swing speed of about 110 mph to get to a similar apex as you would have gotten in past times.

  36. chris says:

    I like the 1-iron. The trick to getting a ball airborne with one is to "pinch" the back of the ball between the turf and the bottom of the blade by swinging as if you were going to stab the ball with the butt of the club from the top of your swing. This keeps your head down, cocks your wrists, slides your hips and gives you the late hit. I've been swinging at golf balls for almost 30 years (not too long by some standards), and this is how I hit every full-swing shot with an iron right down to a sand wedge from 60-70 yards out. I hit every full-swing shot as hard as I can, trying to dig the biggest pelt out of the ground that I can. Gives me all the backspin I can get. Per the 1-iron, I try to buy the head in every set I build. It's too bad so few are offered anymore...

  37. chris says:

    Well, I've never hit a 1 iron, but i will say this, i think to those who claim the problems with fairway woods, etc etc.. i dunno.. one of my most confident shots is the fairway wood, off the tee, rough, and of course, the fairway!, i have 3-5-7 woods, i never use the 3, but the 5 and 7 and like clockwork, 7-220yds smoetimes a slight fade, 5wood 240 same deal, minor fade at most.... stop thinking the problem lies in the clubs, it's your swing..fact of the matter is, if hit properly, they are beautiful.. i think the odds of mishitting a 1iron will be no more than me screwing up my 5or7 woods..on the other hand, i could see how i would prefer a 1 iron to 7wood on some long par 3s.. anything over 240 it would be useful.. but i can already put a 4iron (my biggest iron) consistently 210 , and there arent too many par3s longerthan that.

    a low 90's high 80s golfer who plays to have the nicest shot possible.. i.e i never lay up, never chip out if im trouble, i split branches, etc, so u could consider me a mid 80s golfer with 'course management' being emplioyed..but i dont play to have lowest score, sometimes i much prefer that 245yd 2nd shot on par 5 and put it in eagle range for the putt.. of laying up for a nice approach

  38. chris says:

    I made a mistake when I wrote that I have been hitting golf balls for 30 years. I started playing on April 10, 1971. So it's 39 years. I was 13. My first 18 holes was 202, played at Golf Club Tirrenia, in Tirrenia (Pisa), Italy. I don't remember how many balls I lost. After that start I'm surprised I continued to play, breaking 100 before Labor Day, 1971. I was never much of a golfer, always finding other things to do instead of going to practice or play. Still, the game has been wonderful for me. My dad and I spent hundreds of hours out there together over many, many years. As for 1-irons, I can hit one. My dad never could. He ran out of shots at about the four-iron...

  39. dickey K says:

    I hit a 1 iron, its the best club in my bag and the most consistent. It amazes people that 1) I have one 2) that I hit is 215 yds.

    It is a ping knockoff, Golfsmith Tour Model II that I have had since probably 1990.

    I recently bought a 19 degree Mizuno Klyk because someone said it was the best hitting hybrid they have used and could replace my 1 iron. I hit the klyk about 230 but I still keep the 1 iron because I know I can depend on it and for conversation

  40. chris s says:

    I have four or five 1-iron clubs, either as finished clubs or as just the heads. I have Golfsmith XPC Plus and a Golfsmith XPC 2000 heads, both from the early 1990s; a Tour Model III Evolution head (don't know who made those); a Ping Zing knock-off from the early 2000s, I think (very good clubs-- have the whole set); a Tour Model Series 5 Mid-size (highest-quality set I ever assembled) and a Tour Model II from way back in the mid-1980s.

    I don't buy finished clubs-- I assemble my own. Been doing that since 1982 . It's very easy to get excellent results as far as swingweight in the finished club is concerned if you have a swingweight scale. Just assemble with a bit of craftsmanship in mind, weigh, then add a bit of lead powder down the shaft, seal it in with a cork and you can get very tight results across the set from 1-iron down to about the eight- or nine-iron.

    I recently bought a set of Golfsmith XPC 2000 clubs off craigslist, cut them down 3/8 of an inch and got the swingweight from the 3-iron all the way down through the eight-iron to D-1, plus or minus half a point. The 3 was D-0.5, the 8 was D-1.5. The weights go up drastically from there, what with the 9, PW and SW being heavy clubs for their length. Getting therm all so close makes them feel like you're swinging the same club all the way across the set. I always like it when they come out so close without having to add lead powder.

  41. RickR says:

    I have been using a Ping Eye 2 1 iron for 20 years. I hit it longer than most people using a driver, not to mention it is straighter and better in the wind. My two sons, like me, have trouble with their woods. I would like to get them each a one iron, but have had no luck. Does any one know where I can purchase 2 1-irons? I would prefer either the Ping or the Taylor Made, but I'm not picky! Help in Atlanta

  42. Bob says:

    I'm a teaching pro here in Albuquerque, NM and just had a custom set of irons built for me. They are KZG blades with a 15 degree 1 iron. It is a difficult club to hit off the deck but my reasoning is very simple. When my swing is able to move a golf ball with the one iron blade then I will know that the rest of my clubs will be hit pure.

  43. chris s says:

    I have been using a Ping Eye 2 1 iron for 20 years.I hit it longer than most people using a driver, not to mention it is straighter and better in the wind.My two sons, like me, have trouble with their woods.I would like to get them each a one iron, but have had no luck.Does any one know where I can purchase 2 1-irons?I would prefer either the Ping or the Taylor Made, but I'm not picky!Help in Atlanta

    Best bet is craigslist or start haunting garage and yard sales. I have my heads and I'll never part with them-- even if I never put a shaft into them...

  44. grant says:

    I bought a new cleveland driver and cleveland 3i hybrid 6 months ago that cost me £160 to find out i can't hit them very well so needed to try something else and bought a 1 iron for £10 off ebay a month ago. My handicap was a 26 and now with the 1 iron it is 19. I have not used my driver since having my 1 iron as i can hit my 1 iron every time. I now really what a new 1 iron with all the new tech and think the golf club companies should still make 1 irons as there are still a lot of players how want a 1 iron in their bag and with the new tech these days i think a lot more people could hit a 1 iron. I can hit my 1 iron a mile and with the new tech i would beat a driver all day long as i play with a 18 handicaper and i am only 15 yards short with my very old £10 1 iron. Please bring back the 1 IRON

  45. kevin says:

    I'm just a recreational golfer, but ditching my woods and hitting old my old Big Bertha 1 and 2 irons has brought me from the 90's to low 80's on very difficult courses. In Colorado where the air is less dense I can hit the 1 iron 260 yards strait if I tee it off my left front foot. With my swing dynamics this produces a pretty high trajectory shot. If I want to shoot a low burner I just play the ball off the middle of the stance. I reach most green par 4rs in two and outscore my buddies with their huge grapefruit sized drivers.

  46. Kling says:

    I recently bought a T7 Attack Dual Weight Hybrid from Taylormade. It's a 13 degree, but the reason I bought it was that it had a weighted heel to promote more of a draw, Sadly the club face promotes more of a fade than anything else, I keep it in my bag along with my old northwestern one iron blade. No one else can hit that old thing, not even my golf instructor, it's a lost art, I'm still waiting for when they design a club that falls between the old format and the hybrid. usually I rely on my big bertha two iron (not hybrid) from off the fairway. I keep the one in my bag and use it for out of wind shots or even the bump and run but as I've gotten better with driver I've needed the club less ans less, guess I'll keep whacking.

  47. red says:

    I've never tried to hit a 1-iron. Because of all the bad press it gets i suppose I've never even thought to try. But as my game has dramatically improved (5 hdcp) I must just try one to see what all the hubbub is about. I can't imagine it being "impossible" as most people say it is. As long you put a good swing on it and have the speed physics requires the ball to get in the air.

  48. Juice says:

    Im a southpaw...but 10 years ago at 50 I discarded my righthanded clubs cuz I could finally afford new clubs an bought LEFTIES!!! What a difference...now im playin from the left rough instead of the right ! But I noticed my scratch playin pal hits a 3 iron off da tee evah time, n he is always in the fairway....so I start hittin my lefthanded Three...n..Im their too! then I take a lesson...n..Im their Loooonger ! Myson bus me a Calloway 2 iron.........Im still in the fairway n im out past the womens tees !!!....He shops around and gets me a Calloway "One Iron" ...Hallilujah !!! ....Im out there by the first bunker and Im still in the fairway !!! God is Great... Beer is Good... n... People are Crazy

  49. madfox23 says:

    i have an original i driving iron made by burke golf rites back in the early 1900's and i am looking for more info on the company and club.

  50. patrick says:

    *Whew* Gonna see what I can get (performance wise) out of my old Spalding 2 iron. I already hit my 3i from my Titleist dci better than my driver.

  51. red11 says:

    I put a 1-Iron into my bag earlier this year, although at first I didn't intend to use it much. After using the club for the first time, I hit a great shot, straight and far down the fairway. The 1-Iron has been in my bag since then and I've been using it more often. It's been great for my game, and since I started using the #1, I've found it easier to hit the other long irons as well.

    Also in windy conditions, there's no better club to use.

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