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Steven79

Shortening Driver Shaft

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Who has shortened the length of their driver shaft and what effect did it have. Struggling with consistency with my f9 driver but hit my 3 wood well so I am thinking about taking an inch or inch and half off. Reading online this seems to cause a swing weight change, but how noticeable is this. I dont want to be adding lead tape to the head or spending even more money on heavier weights which are a nightmare to get hold of in the uk. 

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Yes,  you will have to add lead tape.  I picked up a driver and it felt awful...come to find out someone lopped and inch off.  I hit it worse.

I added the inch back on its feels perfect.

I'm not a fan of shortening the modern driver but that's just me.

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Swing weight can be a big deal for a lot of people, just as total weight of the club can be.  You have to try for yourself (choke down on the driver to the length you want and swing it, then swing at full length and you will see what it's like, if it does'nt bother you then go ahead and cut it down)  If it does bother you and you don't want to buy the weights than you need to buy a heavier shaft and or light weight grip or call your local golf store and see if they can add hot melt to the inside of your driver but this will change the feel of the driver as well or do all three.  Many tour pros add hot melt to there drivers to improve feel and add weight to the club.  total weight of the club will be changed if you do anything like this and total weight can be just as important or more important than swing weight for many, you have to experiment to find what works for you for both.  Generally, every 1" off a driver reduces swing weight by 6, 2 grams added to the head adds 1 swing weight and a grip that is 5 grams lighter adds one swingweight and so forth.  I have a driver that is 43.5" with an aldila nv 85 shaft and dri tac lite grip, the head is the Srixon Z355 which is very heavy so it comes in at about d5 sw and 422 gram total weight.............someday i might add hot melt to the head and put on a heavier grip.........for some reason I do better with heavier (total club weight) drivers and higher sw.

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Also, some food for thought, according to Tom Wishon, a famous American club builder, 98% of amateur golfers should not be playing anything longer than 44" shaft in their driver.  Funny since over 90% of the drivers out there are made for shafts 45.5" long............they think all amateurs swing the club slow, cannot hit the ball more than 250 yards with their driver and don't care about making good contact just gaining distance sacrificing control..........no wonder most tour pro's put hot melt in their drivers and play with drivers 45" or less in shaft length.  Personally I got tired of driving the ball 270-290 with longer shaft a little offline into the wilderness (fourth cut).  Once you get used to a shorter shaft in your driver it's hard to give up that control.  If a professional golfer shorten's their driver shaft for more control........what makes us hackers and weekend warriors think we can control that longer shaft when even the pro's can't?  i still get it out there average 275 in the fairway and don't lose clubhead speed with a shorter shaft simply because I have more confidence in that shorter driver so I feel free to swing the club faster with no issues.  

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I just hacked my driver to 43.5. That’s the length Tiger used to dominate the golf world. It definitely promotes way better consistently of strike. I do have to tinker with re-swingweighing it. I have been adding some tape and testing it out. I’ve read cutting it does stiffen the shaft a bit but not by much. 

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I don't understand how taking an inch or two off an already long is going to help with strike or with accuracy.  I'd say the benefit of a longer shaft (a bit more speed) easily outweighs some perception of being "more accurate."  

1 hour ago, Farangster said:

and don't care about making good contact just gaining distance sacrificing control

How does a meager 1" shorter shaft lead to such superior control of a clubhead swinging that fast?  I'm not buying it.

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Hitting the face of a club is easier when it is shorter. The average length of driver on the PGA tour is 44.5 inches which is at least an inch shorter than most drivers sold stock. If the PROs chose a shorter driver because they aren’t consistent enough with a longer one says all I need to know. 

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4 minutes ago, Waddaplaya said:

Hitting the face of a club is easier when it is shorter.

Sure, to some degree.  But 1" or 2" on a driver?  I'd want to see some blind data testing on that.  I can almost bet if I put you on my gc2 and handed you the same 2 drivers: shaft, settings, weight, etc. but one was 45" (or whatever length) and the other 43" (or whatever length), you wouldn't even know/see the difference in results.  It's perception.

Edited by ncates00

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Definitely disagree. Like I said I just did this last week and hitting my driver now I make much more consistent contact with the face and hit it much more solidly. A club longer than 45 inches tends to get lost in my back swing. 

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1 minute ago, Waddaplaya said:

Definitely disagree. Like I said I just did this last week and hitting my driver now I make much more consistent contact with the face and hit it much more solidly. A club longer than 45 inches tends to get lost in my back swing. 

Blind test on a launch monitor and report back with the data. 

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Plenty of these tests on youtube from various very good golfers (good enough to be PGA rated professionals) most of them show better results with shorter shafts, therefore if they see better results I am sure most of us hackers that are not PGA professionals would also see better results.  The other problem is you have to get used to using a shorter shaft when you have only ever used longer driver shafts, don't expect miracles from the get go.........a lot of folks overswing with shorter shafts until they get used to them. 

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13 minutes ago, Farangster said:

Plenty of these tests on youtube from various very good golfers (good enough to be PGA rated professionals) most of them show better results with shorter shafts, therefore if they see better results I am sure most of us hackers that are not PGA professionals would also see better results.

I've seen data showing that it's a mix. 

There is probably more going on, the type of golf shaft, weight distribution, how they swing. It's just something someone might want to experiment with. 

I agree that it takes some time to get use to. I've done it before but it didn't really work for me. I rather choke down on the golf club. 

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Until you do it you’ll never know. A lot of the times going through the process and making mistakes on your own will help you arrive at something you like. Worst thing that happens would be you don’t like it and you swap out your shaft. It’s bit that big of a deal. So experiment a bit. 

 

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23 minutes ago, ncates00 said:

I don't understand how taking an inch or two off an already long is going to help with strike or with accuracy.  I'd say the benefit of a longer shaft (a bit more speed) easily outweighs some perception of being "more accurate."  

How does a meager 1" shorter shaft lead to such superior control of a clubhead swinging that fast?  I'm not buying it.

It doesn't really matter if you buy it or not, and it's not universal across the board. But many golfers have greater control of a shorter club. There are reasons that the Driver settled at 43" or 43.5" inches for decades! One was length and the other was weight. A tubular steel shaft of the length used in modern Drivers cannot weigh 60 or 65 grams. It's not possible! Graphite changed all that. As did titanium for the clubhead. 

Tom Wishon, referenced above, used to design clubs for a big club company until he decided that the big club companies were selling golfers, especially golfers like us, a bill of goods! Longer was better. Strengthened lofts were better! He went into business for himself, and wrote a book titled In Search of the Perfect Golf Club, in which he goes into some detail about club design and the physics behind it. 

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21 minutes ago, Buckeyebowman said:

and it's not universal across the board. But many golfers have greater control of a shorter club

Maybe.  That's why I test.  That's why everyone should test.

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I just actually finished the book. It was great .

 

”Let me put it another way. Tiger Woods has swung a 43.5 inch driver throughout much of his career. If he could hit the ball straight with a 45 inch club—he would. He can’t; so he doesn’t. Tiger knows if he did use a longer driver, he’d have even more trouble keeping it in play. For many years running, the average driver length on the PGA Tour has remained at 44 ½ inches. Now if Tiger and the rest of his pals know they can’t play to the best of their ability using a 46-inch stick, what are the chances that you can?”

I’ve also attached his recommendations for driver length from his book. 

 

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33 minutes ago, Waddaplaya said:

I just actually finished the book. It was great .

 

”Let me put it another way. Tiger Woods has swung a 43.5 inch driver throughout much of his career. If he could hit the ball straight with a 45 inch club—he would. He can’t; so he doesn’t. Tiger knows if he did use a longer driver, he’d have even more trouble keeping it in play. For many years running, the average driver length on the PGA Tour has remained at 44 ½ inches. Now if Tiger and the rest of his pals know they can’t play to the best of their ability using a 46-inch stick, what are the chances that you can?”

I’ve also attached his recommendations for driver length from his book. 

Tiger also obsessed over fairways hit as a metric showing he wasn't as good a driver as he could be.  He has also said that, had he known about SGD instead of fairways hit, he'd probably have obsessed less over it.

Furthermore, the extra yardage gained by the longer driver shaft might be more important for someone whose average score is about 90 than someone looking to win majors. 

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