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GaryH

Are tour pros driver heads the same as ours?

20 posts in this topic

I know the shafts they use tend to be very different to the ones most of us amateurs have.  But what about the clubheads?

I ask because i've seen a review of the Ping G25 driver where the reviewer said it's a very forgiving club but difficult to work and so probably not suited to low handicappers.  But the likes of Hunter, Bubba, and Westwood play it instead of the "better player's" i20 or anser.

So my question is, do the tour pros club heads have something different going on "under the bonnet" so to speak?

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Nope.  The club that you buy off the rack is very different from what the tour pros have in the bag.  Thats part of why you see, "tour issue" clubs go for so much on Ebay.

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Interesting.

So when they quote the names of tour pros who use a particular driver in their marketing (or when the sales assistant mentions this), effectively we are being deceived as the club they're selling to us is quite different?  The head shapes are the same (i think?) but what's underneath is different.

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Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer

Nope.  The club that you buy off the rack is very different from what the tour pros have in the bag.  Thats part of why you see, "tour issue" clubs go for so much on Ebay.

Please, elaborate. What makes them so much better?

Because to a man every person I've ever asked - from CEOs to the guys in the equipment fans, etc. - they've all said this:

1) The equipment is the same. It's from the same production line, etc.

2) The materials are the same. It's not like they run some higher quality titanium in some pro drivers or anything.

3) The differences? They more precisely measure things like the loft. They have an extra step or two of QA testing. And that's it.

4) Aftermarket stuff is better - they'll hotmelt to change the sound and weight a bit. They'll obviously get much better (and more QA tested) shafts. Etc.

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Iacas has it right. The only difference will be more precise quality control with much tighter tolerances, unless they are using a prototype not available for the masses just yet. And we know never to trust a headcover. Remember the pro model R7? It appeared in many pro's bags under many different head covers for a couple of years (as just one example).

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I see we have a difference of opinion.

Assuming the heads are in fact the same, i do find it odd when a golf teaching pro reviews a club and says it probably isn't for the lower handicapper who wants to work the ball, and/or for players with high swing speeds......and yet it's common knowledge that some tour pros use it!

In the Ping example, one would assume the tour pros would all favour the i20 or the anser, but this isn't the case.

Edit:  Actually, reading it again, perhaps i misunderstood, and iacas' 4th point relates to how the engineers do alter the clubhead in such a way that means the tour pros can get more workable versions of the G25 clubhead?

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I see we have a difference of opinion.  Assuming the heads are in fact the same, i do find it odd when a golf teaching pro reviews a club and says it probably isn't for the lower handicapper who wants to work the ball, and/or for players with high swing speeds......and yet it's common knowledge that some tour pros use it! In the Ping example, one would assume the tour pros would all favour the i20 or the anser, but this isn't the case. Edit:  Actually, reading it again, perhaps i misunderstood, and iacas' 4th point relates to how the engineers do alter the clubhead in such a way that means the tour pros can get more workable versions of the G25 clubhead?

You did not read him wrong hot melting a driver does not improve the playabilty, it gets the headweight to an exact number to the players preference. It does change the sound,I believe it gives it a more muted sound. I've heard that it improves the feel, but I can't verify that as I've never hit a hotmelted driver. As stated above tour drivers are just more precise. Your otr 9.5 driver might actually be a 9.2 driver. I've heard pings loft can be off quite a bit.

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Not every Tour player plays a more workable driver or irons. If that were the case, they would all still be using 1 and 2 iron blades instead of hybrids. Remember "workable" is a relative term.  Heck, I can work any driver you give me, many times right off the fairway. Lol.

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Thanks for the illuminating replies, guys.  I guess even the very best players sometimes go for forgiveness over workability.  Though as per TourSpoon's comment, i know from personal experience that the most forgiving drivers are not resistant to hook and slice spin, so they can't be too much trickier for tour pros to manouvere (in their case, intentionally!) compared with "better player" versions.

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Originally Posted by TourSpoon

... Remember "workable" is a relative term.  Heck, I can work any driver you give me, many times right off the fairway. Lol.

If you understand how a golf swing works, you can hit a basic fade or draw with almost any club.

If you have an SGI clubhead with a low Vertical Center of Gravity, it will tend to launch the ball fairly high, unless you counteract it with a low-launch shaft. So, golfers with a GI or a Player's club can work the ball lower, providing they have the swing for it. Many average golfers lose carry on their drives because they launch the ball too low for their swing speed.

Also, some companies have gone to smaller driver heads (below 460 cc.) in Tour and Pro model driver heads. (These are the models they sell in the golf shops):

  • Titleist 913D3.... 445 cc.
  • Calla XHot Pro... 435 cc.
  • Calla RazrFit Extreme ... 440 cc.  (8.5*, 9.5* and 10.5* lofts)
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It depends on the person because things like degrees open or closed to effect the loft and the companies fight those clubs exactly for the pro. I know Phil Mickelson uses a Razr Fit Extreme but it is nothing like the Razr Fit Extreme that sits on every shelf. The driver that sits on the shelf goes anywhere from 3* open to neutral and when he was trying that out he was slicing the ball all over the place. So Callaway made a driver that would not be as open. They did this by adding a Titanium COG ( weight) to the back end of the driver head. This made it so he could draw the ball a lot easier, which right now he is hitting the hell out of that driver. I have heard that there were only a few of the COGs made and this is not something in the drivers on the shelf. I am not sure about any other cases on the tour though.

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Generally speaking, what the pros play and what you buy are two different things.  Personally, I have never met a professional golfer whose equipment was not significantly modified from stock, and in some cases were never stock to begin with.  A case in point is that when Golfsmith purchased Lynx, part of the inventory received was special clubhead molds for Fred Couples.  These molds varied significantly from what Lynx was selling to the public.  In fact the only similarity was that the Lynx name was on them.  Another instance was back in the early 90's when a premier player at the time was being paid a big endorsement contract to play graphite shafted irons from a major brand.  Half way through the season it was learned that his shafts were actually steel painted to look like the graphite shafts that came with the set.

As far as drivers are concerned, other than shafting, weighting, club length, etc. there are not a lot of modifications that can be made.  However, I have seen numerous instances where roll was eliminated on the clubface of a pro's driver.

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If any of us wanted to, or spent the time/money, we could hunt for an experienced clubsmith in our area that can tweak our clubs in the same fashion that the pros have their clubs tweaked.  If I spent a month between the range and an experienced golfsmith tweaking my clubs, does that mean that my clubs are "different" now?  Or just "modified" for my needs?

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Interesting topic just 2days ago I saw a site on eBay--actually I can't remember the name of their eBay store--but do a search under 'tour issue'-- maybe even ' tour issue club heads' On their store they list taylormade rocketballz driver head for $750 head only. Shafts for $350+. Tour issue irons sets for $1400. Tour issue putters for $2000, one for $2800 and one for $3000 I would live your input on these guys.
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Originally Posted by twisted5ltr

Interesting topic just 2days ago I saw a site on eBay--actually I can't remember the name of their eBay store--but do a search under 'tour issue'-- maybe even ' tour issue club heads'

On their store they list taylormade rocketballz driver head for $750 head only. Shafts for $350+. Tour issue irons sets for $1400. Tour issue putters for $2000, one for $2800 and one for $3000

I would live your input on these guys.


Pay extra for nothing...

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Lol, just to be clear I wasn't thinking about getting one. I was just wondering if there was a difference, since he clearly only sells what the site calls the only all tour issue site or some such claim. I was wondering how a guy so over-priced stays in business unless there is really that big of a market for big time suckers or there is a real product difference.
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Originally Posted by twisted5ltr

Lol, just to be clear I wasn't thinking about getting one. I was just wondering if there was a difference, since he clearly only sells what the site calls the only all tour issue site or some such claim. I was wondering how a guy so over-priced stays in business unless there is really that big of a market for big time suckers or there is a real product difference.

Seems like a marketing cash grab to me.  Do you really believe these "tour issue" clubs will make you are me instantly play better?

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Originally Posted by Deryck Griffith

Seems like a marketing cash grab to me.  Do you really believe these "tour issue" clubs will make you are me instantly play better?

Cash grab is right. Would a Scotty Circle T help me putt better than a floor model Scotty? These "Tour Issue" components are supposed to be cherry picked with super tight tolerances for Tour Vans and reps to put out to players on a variety of professional tour levels. I think the Tour branding has become a little watered down now that any Joe with enough green can get one. This seems to be the case of the Scotty Cameron's at least.

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