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Elmer

Wedge 54 or 56, does bounce matter?

21 posts in this topic

I am trying to decide between 2 similar clubs. I want to carry only 3 wedges, PW(46) GW(50) & ? My choices are 54 with 8 bounce or 56 with 14 bounce Both Volkey spin milled. I had been carrying the 54 because it would give me just a little extra distance that the 56 does not. But it kills me on short, soft, half swing shots. During a lesson with my PGA pro, we were working on short game, 70 yards in, and I was hitting the 56. I noticed it was smoother and felt more forgiving than the 54. I also notice I chunk alot more shots with the 54/ I guess if I find myself at a distance more than my 56, I could hit a light 50. But does the fact that the 56 have more bounce have anything to do with it feeling like a better, more fogirving club? What does bounce do for me? Any suggestions or advice?
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I tend to think of it this way - a PW at 46 is not a PW - it's a 9i.

With that cleared up, I think of my wedges as 50, 55, 60 (3 wedges) - enough gap to make a difference with 1/4 inch shaft length differences among the three.

As to your comments above, it sounds like you're not a nipper/picker, if the 54 is digging on you. With wedges on a full shot, do you have the shaft vertical or do you lean it much ahead of the ball - if you're leaning much, you're reducing the bounce of the club.

If you're setting up correctly, and the 56/14 is cutting through the turf smoothly and not hanging up, the bounce is working for you. Personally, I like the Vokey SM4 56/12 or 54/12 (M Grind) if you're sticking with Vokey. It has more trailing edge, and heel and toe relief (i.e. so it is more versatile and usable on delicate shots around the green) than the 56/14 - which I think has no relief. At the same time, the 56/14 is working for you. You might add a higher lofted club with more versatility, but that's up to your game.

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Thanks for the help. I used to carry a 60 degree volkey. However since I walk I want to lighten my load and I found I was chipping around the green with my 60 way too much, and with little success. I may add it back for tournaments or at a later date, so I can carry 50/56/60. But I have been trying to use the 56 or 54 with an open face for higher shots. I am trying to learn to be versatile
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Originally Posted by Elmer

Thanks for the help. I used to carry a 60 degree volkey. However since I walk I want to lighten my load and I found I was chipping around the green with my 60 way too much, and with little success. I may add it back for tournaments or at a later date, so I can carry 50/56/60. But I have been trying to use the 56 or 54 with an open face for higher shots. I am trying to learn to be versatile

A 56 with 14 bounce and no relief is tough to open, place the shaft behind the ball, or use on lies that are less than lush. I don't pick/nip and need bounce for the club to not get hung up in the turf but I still want a rolled leading edge that sits on the ground - Vokey doesn't give you that in any option with sufficient bounce. I would need to take my wedge to a guy for grinding and add lead tape for swingweight.

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I guess if I had to do it all over again I would have gotten different wedges. I have heard that Cleveland makes wedges for noob hackers like me. However I picked up volkey 54/56/60 at the local annual golf sale liquidation. In successive years I would grab one of these ranging in price from $45 to $65 brand new, which is a steal considering they retail for $109. When I bought I never looked at the bounce, I just bought because I needed the loft and it was a good price.But I am kind of stuck with them now for the long haul. Thanks for the advice
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Originally Posted by Elmer

I guess if I had to do it all over again I would have gotten different wedges. I have heard that Cleveland makes wedges for noob hackers like me.However I picked up volkey 54/56/60 at the local annual golf sale liquidation.In successive years I would grab one of these ranging in price from $45 to $65 brand new, which is a steal considering they retail for $109.When I bought I never looked at the bounce, I just bought because I needed the loft and it was a good price.But I am kind of stuck with them now for the long haul.Thanks for the advice

All of our games vary to some extent over the years - mine has been up, down, and now trending up again over several years. What bounce does your 60 have so I can guess as to which grind it has...

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Bounce is huge.  You need to match it to your swing and to the conditions that you play in to play your best.  At a 15 handicap, Id probably suggest you try something with more bounce, which will prevent you from hitting it fat.  You may want to try less bounce in your lob wedge in order to make it easier to open up the face and hit flop shots but typically bounce is your friend.

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I typically don't go for anything Dave Pelz says any longer but this part sounds right:

When I ask about bounce angle, however, the room usually just falls silent.

If this sounds familiar to you, then you may have a problem. It’s critical to outfit your wedge set with a variety of bounces, and at the very least, you should be able to point out the wedge with the lowest amount of bounce and the one with the highest. Even if you own a perfect wedge swing, it’s the bounce that ultimately determines how each club will react with the turf, sand, water—or whatever else your ball may be sitting in—through impact. The bounce on your wedges is just as important as the attack angle of your swing. The two combine to help you maintain speed through the ball or—gulp—dig into the ground and slow down.

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Yes, it matters. Get as much as possible for the widest variety of shot choices.
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Originally Posted by Elmer

But I am kind of stuck with them now for the long haul.Thanks for the advice

Just do what I do ... look into my bag or around the house and see what $$$ eBay will bring.

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Originally Posted by Mr. Desmond

All of our games vary to some extent over the years - mine has been up, down, and now trending up again over several years. What bounce does your 60 have so I can guess as to which grind it has...


my wedges with bounce are as follows

54/11

56/14

60/08

Like I said I am walk and carry and I want to carry one. I am trying to carry the one that could be most versatile. Since I can not hit the 60 as far as the others that is out.

It comes down to the 54 and 56.

They are almost the same club except for 2 degrees and some bounce, but they feel differently.

I should mention I take good divots on wedge shots.

I also play in the northeast, where it is soggy and wet during the spring and firm and dry in the summer!

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Originally Posted by Elmer

my wedges with bounce are as follows

54/11

56/14

60/08

Like I said I am walk and carry and I want to carry one. I am trying to carry the one that could be most versatile. Since I can not hit the 60 as far as the others that is out.

It comes down to the 54 and 56.

They are almost the same club except for 2 degrees and some bounce, but they feel differently.

I should mention I take good divots on wedge shots.

I also play in the northeast, where it is soggy and wet during the spring and firm and dry in the summer!

I think you've got the wrong wedges for versatility. The 56-14 is tough if you're opening up in dry conditions and making delicate, partial shots. Of course, if you don't pitch around the greens, but chip, the 56/14 may work, esp in soggy conditions (will glide through the wet). The 56-11 is fairly versatile for pitches, delicate partial shots, and chips.

You could trade a couple of clubs for one that fits.

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Originally Posted by Mr. Desmond

I think you've got the wrong wedges for versatility. The 56-14 is tough if you're opening up in dry conditions and making delicate, partial shots.

I disagree, but what do I know? My 54 has 17 degrees of bounce and can play soft shots off the cart path. ;)

P.S. My 60 has 22. My pitching wedge has 14.

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Originally Posted by iacas

I disagree, but what do I know? My 54 has 17 degrees of bounce and can play soft shots off the cart path. ;)

P.S. My 60 has 22. My pitching wedge has 14.

I absolutely agree....14 degrees isn't really that much at all but that was about the most l could find in a lefty wedge.  I would take 14 degrees of bounce in my 8 iron if I could get it !! I say the more bounce the merrier....I was hitting flop shots off of a lie board with a 60* wedge with 26 degrees of bounce with no problems at all right handed.  Finally Edel has the Lefty wedges and mine were built yesterday and I can't wait to finally have the experience left handed.

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So use the club with the most bounce?
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Originally Posted by iacas

I disagree, but what do I know? My 54 has 17 degrees of bounce and can play soft shots off the cart path. ;)

P.S. My 60 has 22. My pitching wedge has 14.

I think you disagree because you did not analyze the differences. There is more to a grind than a bounce number, as you know.

The difference is your wedge has relief - heel, toe, trailing edge, even the front edge is designed to sit on the ground.

Your Driver grind: The DVR Grind has a split sole design, with a centrally v shaped bounce surface to aid the club head as it glides through the sand or turf. It features a mid bounce sole with a narrow and steep forward bounce angle. Because of the narrow bounce area the club needs the exaggerated bounce angle. The wedge has a dramatic trail relief, enabling you to lay it back to open the club without the leading edge elevating from the ground.

The Vokey 56-14 has no relief, and no such versatility advantages.

BTW, my Wedge has 18 deg of bounce in the 60, and 14 in the SW - but the number doesn't tell the story. It's the design of the grind - bounce, relief, etc. - that counts.

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No, I "analyzed the differences," Jerry. At the end of the day I'll take a 14 with no heel/toe relief than an 8 with a great grind.

The thing with having 8 degrees of bounce on a wedge is that that's all the bounce you'll ever get. So in general, I recommend people get as much as possible, and I don't believe you need wedges with "less bounce" in order to play a variety of shots - sometimes a different grind helps, but even if I can't for some reason have a different grind I'll take more bounce over less. It helps far, far more often than it hurts. And if you know how to use the club you can play high, soft shots off the cartpath all day.

You said a 56/14 wouldn't work off dry conditions if he opens it up. I disagree that it can and does work.

Also, my wedges don't have the bullet sole.

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Originally Posted by iacas

No, I analyzed the differences, Jerry.The thing with having 10 degrees of bounce on a wedge is that that's all the bounce you'll ever get. So in general, I recommend people get as much as possible.

I agree with your point about taking the 14 over an 8 -- but your versatility is reduced.

Look at the description of your grind - it's not only a number.

A guy comes to you, like the OP, and says "What should I look for in a wedge?" You say loads of bounce because that's what I have and it works for me and it will work for more people. So he goes out there, buys that Vokey 56-14 and starts skulling every delicate flop shot off tight lies. The OP shows his instructor his wedge, and says, "Heck, no wonder you're skulling everything. Part of it is technique and part of it is this wedge is not designed to hit flops consistently off tightish lies - there is no relief on the trailing edge, toe, heel - it's tough to open, and even if you square it up, the leading edge is off the ground. That leading edge sitting up off the ground doesn't even give me confidence."

At least those are almost the exact words of my Edel Fitter.

You see, your Edel Wedge with a stated 22 of bounce does not have the design disadvantages of the Vokey.

I got rid of my 60-10 Vokey and 60-15 Miura because the design of the sole (the "grind") was not designed to instill confidence for delicate pitches in which the shaft is vertical or backwards on less than lush lies (generally). The designer of those wedges did not contemplate that use for that particular model. Now I can take an 8 deg of bounce Gap Wedge and hit flops with it, I can take the Vokey and Miura and hit flops with it --- BUT NOT consistently off difficult lies because I need to make a really great swing - I don't have much room for error with those wedges.

With the Edel Sole Design (and bounce), it allows me to make a mistake and get away with it, and that offers more confidence to golfers - and more confidence means additional relaxation in the swing. And that is awesome stuff.

So possibly we don't disagree - my recommendation to the OP is to eBay his wedges and get one with high bounce that is designed to do what he wants around the greens.

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