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How much bounce do I need?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hey guys and Gals. I have question about wedges. I was told that the amount of bounce is the most important part about picking wedges. So how do I now how much bounce is right for me. is more bounce better for one task than it is for another. I'm not in the sand very much, but when I am I need all the help I can get to get out of it. I'm usually always just off the green so I use my wedges alot around the green. I'm strougling to get the ball to spin enugh to stop when it hits the green. Are all the ses thing affected by the bouce on the wedge? Can anyone help with this?

post #2 of 14

I take the most bounce I can get.  My pitching wedge has 9 degrees, my gap 10, and my sand wedge 16.


The biggest problems I've had, wedge-wise, came with my previous wedges late in their lifetime.  I got them measured and found out I had literally worn out the bounce;  my SW was down to about 6 degrees of it.


By contrast, I don't think I've ever had a situation where I felt I had too much bounce on a club.  Then again, most of my wedge use is for pitching.

post #3 of 14

More bounce give you a larger room for error.


First of all I recommend learning what bounce is and why it matters.

If you have the option, I'll recommend you try clubs with different bounce and see how it works for you.


Remember that the bounce is only used on bunker shots and shots where you expose the bounce to the ground behind the ball before hitting the ball. Players are often divided in groups, depending on the steepness of the swing, and pick bounce accordingly. I think that is a bit too general, so any hands on experience you can get before buying one will be good.

post #4 of 14

Couple of things come to mind.  First, what type of bunkers do you have at the courses you play at most?  If they have fluffy sand, then more bounce is good.  If they are hard packed or firm, then less bounce is desirable. Second, what type of grass do you have around the greens?  Are they tight (closely mown)?  If so, you want less bounce.  If the grass is generally kept pretty long, more bounce would be OK. Third, it's generally the height and not the spin that makes a ball stop on short shorts around the green.  You just cannot generate enough speed to put enough spin to make a ball check much, unless you can perfect a full-swing flop shot (not recommended). If you need high, soft shots, get familiar with a 60* wedge.  Otherwise, 56* is more versatile.


I carry a 56* - 14* bounce sand wedge, which I use for most bunker shots.  I also have a 60* - 8* bounce lob wedge for firm packed sand, like after it rains, and for the high, soft shots around the green.  Seems to cover most of the options.

post #5 of 14

Bounce has nothing to do with the way the ball spins.  The reason why the ball is not spinning for you is down to the ball your technique and your wedge grooves.  A softer ball spins more generally, better technique is better and good sharp groves help spin.  Bounce is used to help you hit out of bunkers and rough.  It is measured like this - when a club hits the ground it will "bounce" back of it.  The higher the bounce on the wedge the higher it will bounce of the ground.  This means it is really easy to thin the ball of tight lies with high bounce but really easy to hit out of bunkers and rough when the ball is sitting up.  This is why the sandwedge has the most bounce.  A sand wedge with around 12 degrees of bounce will be good for you and if you have a L wedge or G wedge it is really personal prefrence.  If you will be hitting those from the fairway go for a lower bounce around 6 or so.  If its too low it will just dig into the ground. 

post #6 of 14

I second everything Harmonious said.  If you play your basic public courses with builders sand in the bunkers that seldom gets raked regularly and firmer fairways then you'll do better with less bounce.  Too much bounce and its easier to blade the ball across the green.  To over simplify a little (well maybe alot), think of bounce as a club's resistance to dig into the sand (turf).  The more bounce, the more resistance. 

post #7 of 14

As  follow up to this thread, should wedge bounce be a consideration when selecting club for hitting chips or pitches in wet muddy conditions.  I seem to often hit these shots fat using my 56 degree 14 bounce wedge.  Perhaps I should be looking at using my 60 degree 7 bounce wedge.  Thanks.

post #8 of 14
Originally Posted by keb View Post

As  follow up to this thread, should wedge bounce be a consideration when selecting club for hitting chips or pitches in wet muddy conditions.  I seem to often hit these shots fat using my 56 degree 14 bounce wedge.  Perhaps I should be looking at using my 60 degree 7 bounce wedge.  Thanks.

When chipping around the green, I play the ball back in my stance, regardless of what club I use.  In effect, this eliminates any bounce as I want the leading edge to make the first contact. Pitching the ball up into the air is different.  Depending on how far I want the ball to roll, I will open the face and potentially increase the bounce.  It also depends on the lie.  You don't want to try a tight lie pitch with a lot of bounce.  That's a potential 75 yard skull shot over the green.


In muddy conditions, using a lot of bounce is very dangerous, because the club actually contacts the ground earlier.  If the ground is muddy, it is very easy to hit it fat.  Bad news. You may be better off using a lower lofted club, play it back in your stance and just try to get the ball on the green.


post #9 of 14

This might help you or confuse you!      http://www.ralphmaltby.com/50 

post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 

ok that makes sense, so then my other question would be how do i know what wedge or club to use around the green? i'd like to be more confident in choosing clubs for my work around the green. but the truth is that i never know how each club will react and how much bouce vs rolll i will be getting. so i usually play it safe and get a 5 or a 7 iron and putt the ball on. can anyone help with this?

post #11 of 14

Honestly, I don't think the choice of bounce is as big a deal as you're making out of it.  It's important, don't get me wrong, but with moderately good technique, you can use almost any bounce club under any conditions.  I have a 56° sand wedge with 13° of bounce that I use for almost every short game shot, including chips from hard pan.  I'm a 25+ handicap at the moment, and I rarely have problems due to the bounce.  For most chip shots, you should be hitting ball-first with a somewhat de-lofted club.  In that case, you are not exposing the bounce to the ground anyway.  Sure, if you screw up you may have a little extra room for error with less bounce in those conditions, but that should be pretty rare.  On average, I think you're better off with more rather than less bounce, though.


So my advice is to start with a guess that's neither the most or least bounce available and just learn to use it.  If you start having a consistent problem that seems to be bounce-related, try a different one later, but I really wouldn't worry about it until you are adept enough with the wedge that most of your bad shots are due to bounce problems rather than other errors.

post #12 of 14

Great thread I have been wondering this as well.  I plan on getting some new wedges soon, good info here.


Do they let you try out the wedges at Golf galaxy or dicks sporting goods before you buy?

post #13 of 14

There is a lot of information on bounce, but I find if a player takes bigger divots in general, then they need a little more bounce (digger) than someone who takes little to no divot (slider). If you play in soft conditions you need more bounce than if the fairways are rock hard. Fluffy sand needs more bounce and hard sand needs less. Somehow, through experience I have come to figure out what I need for the average South Florida course along with my own slider swing. For a relative beginner, I would look at a SW with 10-14 degrees and a lob with 6-10 as a happy medium. Once you get proficient around the greens then go down to the clubmaker and grab some used specialty wedges out of the used barrel and experiment (or you can do this first). Like most of us, experience becomes your best teacher. Good luck. 

post #14 of 14

In one word: MORE.

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