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Steven79

Shortening Driver Shaft

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I think people need to stop paying attention to what Tiger Woods does and do what's best for their own game.  We are not PGA professionals playing for multi million dollar purses.    They may shorten their driver shaft but God knows what else is done to their set up so they don't lose distance.

We have all seen a lot of articles asking amateurs if they would rather be hitting 8 iron out of the rough or 4 iron from the fairway..  Gotta decide for yourself.

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A lot of folks will get more distance with shorter shafts because they will make better contact and will not lose distance with off center strikes, that's why you need to experiment- slap some tape on the face of that longer shafted driver and if you are hitting it all over the face than your losing distance if your making center strikes than don't mess with it. However, if you cannot make good contact with a shorter shaft as well, it could also be a different problem all together...........maybe your driver is too light overall, maybe the swing weight is not high enough............most off the rack driver's are too light for me.

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I am not relating our swing to that of a PGA professional. I am saying if the pros literally choose to use shorter drivers because it is easier to keep in play that means it could help the average player as well. 

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1 hour ago, Waddaplaya said:

I am not relating our swing to that of a PGA professional. I am saying if the pros literally choose to use shorter drivers because it is easier to keep in play that means it could help the average player as well. 

Predominantly, The average golfer relates more to an LPGA player. After watching a fair amount of the women play a few months ago.....and seeing more than a few of them choking up on their driver....I figured why not. Wow, My contact is better. The club feels light, as if I could swing it 125mph...Ha, Maybe I'm hitting 95mph now...Anyway, My driving has improved 

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I have shortened many driver shafts. I play Titleist drivers and their stock shafts come in 45". When I trim one inch off,  to get to 44", I get much better consistency in my strikes.

Swingweight goes down from D3 to C8 (my experience). For me, C8 is still playable without having to add lead tape or hot melt. Titleist drivers have removable weights so I could also try that to increase swingweight. I'm 61 years old and a reduced swingweight makes it easier to swing for me because I'm not as strong as I used to be. However, I would not recommend going lower than C8.

 

Edited by arturo28mx

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I had my Titleist 915 shortened to 44”. It made a huge improvement in my accuracy. I never did hit the ball that far, plus I don’t hit very many GIR, but I stay in the short grass more than not.

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Yes I'm a believer, cut mine down from 45 to 44" which improved my consistency and no noticeable drop off in distance, in all fairness I would say my average driving distance has improved. I didn't bother about swing weight, too complicated, just cut it down re-gripped it and took it to the range to see if I liked it. I also took 1/2" off my 3 wood out of curiosity, didn't really make much difference either way on that one. What I really want is a driver that I can thump like my 5 wood.

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... Cobra offers the F9 in shorter Tour Length for a reason. Every 1/4" you miss the center you lose 5-7 yds. Plenty of golfers hitting a 45" or longer shaft will miss on the toe by a full 1" or more and that is 20 to 28 yds lost. Yes some players can center 45 to 45.5* shafted drivers with regularity but they are the exception. Most golfers will gain more yards by hitting the center than they will gain a few more yards due to increased ball speed with a longer shaft. Obviously if you are hitting the center more, you are hitting more accurate shots. Most engineers that I have talked to at the PGA Show play and recommend shorter than standard drivers. I play my F9 at 44.25" and find 44.5" is the line where anything longer starts missing the center and accuracy suffers. Ymmv ...

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On 6/19/2019 at 7:53 PM, Chisag said:

... Cobra offers the F9 in shorter Tour Length for a reason. Every 1/4" you miss the center you lose 5-7 yds. Plenty of golfers hitting a 45" or longer shaft will miss on the toe by a full 1" or more and that is 20 to 28 yds lost. Yes some players can center 45 to 45.5* shafted drivers with regularity but they are the exception. Most golfers will gain more yards by hitting the center than they will gain a few more yards due to increased ball speed with a longer shaft. Obviously if you are hitting the center more, you are hitting more accurate shots. Most engineers that I have talked to at the PGA Show play and recommend shorter than standard drivers. I play my F9 at 44.25" and find 44.5" is the line where anything longer starts missing the center and accuracy suffers. Ymmv ...

Damn straight. 

Everyone talks about the whole lead tape, hot melt to get the swingweight up... Amateurs...

I have a 45" Ping G driver that when I hit it well I crush it. When I don't it's in the shit. I also have an Exotics EX 10 driver at 44". I didn't just get the shaft cut when I ordered it, I had Tour Edge install lead plugs into the tip end of the shaft. The result, the tip plugs bring my swingweight up to D2. Which is my swingweight in all my Exotics clubs driver to pitching wedge.

If you're going to do it yourself, you would need to use lead tape or hot melt. Another option is to get a 44" shaft via Golfworks and Cobra adapter and some lead weight plugs and do it yourself. I highly recommend getting the components and having a professional do it though.

Or you can just choke down and save some money.

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Back to the OP - As was mentioned in earlier, Cobra has a "tour length" offering in their F9.  It is 1" shorter than their base F9.  To counter act the swing weight change they ship this with a 6gram and 18gram weight vs. the standard 2gram and 14gram.  They also sell other weights if you really want to dial in a swing weight.  All of us will have different swing weight preferences, and these different weights will give you an idea of what to expect.  A little more costly than lead tape, but not as permanent as hotmelt.

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On 6/25/2019 at 11:51 PM, onthehunt526 said:

Or you can just choke down and save some money.

Disagree strongly;  ;-) the word "choke" should not enter your mind when hitting any club, much less driver.   

Grip down on the club, fine.  AK grip, good thought too.  "Choke down" -- no!

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To make this right, club length alone is not enough, we need "the 3 holy" parameters set right for the actual player, and those are Play length, Total weight, and Balance or how the player feels the weight distribution between head shaft and grip.

Way to many player has the idea that the longer the shaft is, the more club speed are we able to generate, but thats not true at all, since its also a question of total weight and balance or resistance if you like. At some point we can no longer gain club speed, and all we get going longer than that is inconsistent impact.

No drivers has the same BALL speed all over the face, so unless we are able to make impact where COR is at the max, we loose ball speed and distance, and impact who is to far out from VCOG puts horizontal gear effects to play, so we also loose directional dispersion.

Thats why Tour players dont play standard, they loose directional dispersion and cant choose what side of the fairway they wants their lay up, so a potential few yards longer as max cant pay back what we loose on dispersion.

Ive wrote a DIY driver tune up guide, who is the same method ive been using during fitting of players of all levels, and it works. You WILL improve both your average distance, AND dispersion, and thats good for scoring, so unless the club we make is for LONG DRIVING, most players benefit from going shorter than standard.

If you fit to play "standard" length irons, 44.00" is a good match on the driver, and if your irons is plus 0.5" you might add the same to the driver who then becomes 44.50". Elite amateurs and PROs with a very good eye to hand coordination might add up to 0.5" inch on those numbers. ONLY players with a natural flat swing plane, with a very good eye to hand coordination will benefit from a driver longer than this, and thats why i never made a driver longer than 45.00" 

When we go shorter we loos SW or feel of head weight, but DONT reset the original value, but use this opportunity to find what works the best for you, and that might be both lower or higher than standard, so dont trace "standard values", its not the same as that they work for you. 

During this testing, lead tape is a must, and if you dont want to play with lead tape there is other options when you know how much weight is needed, but until then lead tape is whats needed so we can dial in what works the best.

Total weight is also important, and when we go shorter, we can use 5 grams pr inch UP on shaft weight as rule of thumb, so if we have a club thats 45.00" who feel right on shaft weight, that shaft is not ideal at 44.00", so when going shorter, we should start from a shaft weight ABOVE our needs.

About distance and ball speed.
Many players who plays a standard length driver has a average PTR or Smash factor below 1.44 (on Trackman or Flightscope), and if this player has 100 mph as measured club speed he gets average 144 mph ball speed. If he can keep the same club speed, and improve his impact, he should be able to see a PTR of 1.50 to 1.52 as the max, (or 150 to 152 ball speed in this case), and for each mpg ball speed we can gain, we get average 2 yards more carry.

The average player has the potential to improve ball speed from 144 to 150 or 152, so thats 6-8 Mph ball speed or 12-16 yards more carry, but now with better dispersion side ways.

Some player will actually GAIN club speed going shorter, AND improve impact at the same time, so its all about finding the players limit for how long a club he should play, what total weight that club should have, and what balance, the rest is feel, and LOFT to get ball flight as we want it.

Those who doubt this should give it a try them self, and pay attention to impact pattern on the face. Ideal for a draw is on the upper 1/3 of the face, 3/8 to 0.5" against the toe side, but to really make it right, we should start by finding where VCOG i located on the face.

.

image.thumb.png.c01425e40bb0ec756f4330955ffd0674.png

Edited by Howard Jones

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