Originally Posted by Jason M Henley
I was reading this again and was curious about the club situation you had. What clubs did you have and what did you move to? About a year ago I went from some muscle-back Mizunos to some TM blades. It was a little tough at first but I love them now and at least I THINK they have helped me get to where I am. However they are blades and rated for 7 and below (I think) so I wonder if I could be just as good with some clubs that were a little more forgiving. I do love working the ball though so that was the main consideration for the blades.
Just curious. Thanks
I was hoping nobody would ask as it is embarrassing to be so insecure with clubs that i can't settle on a set of irons for more than a year or so, but I get the feeling that others have probably been in the same predicament, so, here we go.
I started on what I call the golf club merry-go-round about 10 years ago after my game improved to the point that I felt I was ready for the next step, new clubs, blades. ( http://thesandtrap.com/t/49746/post-mortem-130-to-88-in-6-months-what-worked-what-did-not/54 )
I had been playing some PIng I-3 O-size irons, my first fitted set or irons. After using them for a few years and feeling over confident because I had lowered my scores from the 110's down into the mid- to high 80's. I decided it was time to take the next logical step and get some clubs with more workability, I decided on a set of Mizuno Mp-32's. I had them for about a year and hit them pretty good for the most part, and loved the feel when I hit the ball well. Problem was my distance control was way off. Depending on how well I hit the 'sweet spot' I could easily be a club long or short of my average shot. I was flying greens and coming up short all too frequently. My scores took a big hit.
Well, after not quite a year, I had enough pain from bad scores and decided my swing wasn't good enough to hold up to the MP-32's and it was time to tuck my tail and go back to a game improvement club. A friend suggested I try the latest Callaway offering. So, I got rid of the MP-32's and picked up a set of X-18's (it has been a few years, but I believe that is right) with the uniflex shafts. The store insisted the One-shaft-fits-all, were great. Not so great for me. Shaft way too soft, ball way too high. I didn't have those more than several months and I decided to go back to some Ping's, the I-5. I was fitted and they really wanted to put me in some S300 shafts stepped stiff to match my swing and to stop the ballooning ball problem with the Callaways. The I-5's were ok, but I never really felt like they were quite right and I missed the feel of the forged Mizuno's. Less than a year later, I decided to try a set of Mx-200's. These were so, so, for me. Good, but not great. I still hadn't found anything that played as well as my original Ping I-3's and my scores were hanging around bogey.
I finally thought enough is enough and sold the Mx-200's and decided to try some used clubs, including some older Ping I-3's. I picked up 3 different sets, Ping Zings', Ping I-3's and Ping Eye-2's and played them for a little over a year. The I-3's were ok, not as good as I remember them. The eye-2's were a better head, really easy to hit from all types of lies, more of a players clubs, but the shafts weren't as good and the lofts were weak compared to the newer clubs and I was a full club shorter. I still felt like I could do better. (isn't that always the case?)
That's the long way around to the equipment changes that brings me to where I am today. I sat down and evaluated my strengths and weeknesses on the golf course and decided what I needed to do to make a change. At the time, three of my changes involved equipment; Irons, 3-wood and putter. Over the short span of about 1 month I sold my irons sets, a nice SC putter I wasn't using and a bunch of extras that had been sitting in the closet unused for a long time. I first replaced the putter with a very generic TM770 that I putt really well with. Next was the irons. After a lot of thought I felt like I needed to get some confidence back and bought a set of Ping G-15's, 4-UW. And last, I got rid of an old Taylormade System 2 3-wood and bought a new Taylormade Burner Superfast 2.0 3-wood. All stiff shafts. What a change.
I began putting better, hitting my irons with some confidence, and attacking short par-4's and long par-5's with the new 3-wood. In conjunction with this, I relocated to a more difficult course than what I had been playing and forced myself to learn to hit better and more difficult shots and learn some real course management skills.
So far, it has all worked out very well. My handicap has dropped 6 strokes, I am currently sitting on a 10.0. But better than that, I am playing with a lot more confidence and really having a good time when I go out. I look forward to hitting good shots.
What troubles do I still have? Well, the G15's hit the ball pretty high and the course I play on is a links style course open to the wind with firm greens and fairways. You can see the problem here, needing to keep the ball lower with clubs made to hit the ball high. I have to be very careful in club selection and how I play my shots.
Second, the G15's have a very wide base that makes easy work of hitting the ball nicely off the fairway, it is hard not to hit solid shots. But the irons can be a real drag when the rough gets wet or if I find my ball in an difficult lie or if the wind is up.
But we have to be honest with ourselves in all of this. I find it hard to argue with my new success. It is nice to go out for a quick 9 holes and shoot a few shots over par on a difficult course and to finally break into the 70's (on occasion). I often walk off the course with a real sense of accomplishment for having played a good round of golf.
But nagging in the back of my mind is that feeling that if I am going to take the next step I am going to need to lower my ball flight and be able to do more with shots from challanging lies and that means a change in irons. I look forward to a change in a way, but also dread because of what happened last time I tried going from a game improvement club to a players iron.
Well, there you go. An painful journey to say the least, but it is the route that I've traveled to get where I am. And I feel that I am much better off than I was even two years ago.
I am very interested to hear your perspective on irons, having managed your game to the point you have. How much does shot workability (with your irons) factor itself into your scores?