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Bonvivant

Learning to Hit Driver

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I do not currently take a driver in my bag, and rarely if ever play my 3w (persimmon) or hybrid that are in the bag. I hit irons off of the tees, and I have been hitting them exceptionally well for my standards as of late. I am ok with just hitting irons but it seems to be common opinion (and statistical fact) that longer is better, and my 180 yard 4i probably isn't going to cut it for me to progress. The problem I have with driver and all woods for the most part is a hellacious slice that leaves me wide right no matter where I aim. On to the question:

When I do find/buy I modern driver, how do I translate a very straight long iron shot into the big boy? I feel like my swing is sound, and my results with the irons would back me up to some extent. I do not have the money for something new/fitted, nor do I have the money for professional lessons. What can I do to mitigate the slice when moving to a driver/wood? I am 5'7" ish. Should a be looking for a shorter than stock driver? My irons are stock, and I grip about 1/2" from the top of them. Should I go for a higher loft like 12ish? Are there any drivers that are smaller than 460cc that are forgiving?

Input is appreciated. If you think of any questions I didn't ask, or extra advice, that is appreciated as well. I probably wont be hitting driver/wood off the tee this year, because I really want to work on it on the range before taking it to the course where the pressure is on.

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13 minutes ago, Bonvivant said:

I am 5'7" ish. Should a be looking for a shorter than stock driver? My irons are stock, and I grip about 1/2" from the top of them. Should I go for a higher loft like 12ish? Are there any drivers that are smaller than 460cc that are forgiving?

I am between 5'8 and 5'9. I think I have a 44" custom shaft on my Ping G30 10.5* driver. Standard lenght is 45'75" I believe for that club. I suggest spending time on the range hitting your driver real easy to a target about 100 yards or so out. You can hit a jumbo bucket of  balls real easy off a tee and it shouldn't wear you out. This exercise can help you control the club face. I spent a few years where I would not play driver. I then got fitted and practiced and often times it is the best weapon in my bag now.

Edited by Carl3

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9 minutes ago, Carl3 said:

I am between 5'8 and 5'9. I think I have a 44" custom shaft on my Ping G30 10.5* driver. Standard lenght is 45'75" I believe for that club. I suggest spending time on the range hitting your driver real easy to a target about 100 yards or so out. You can hit a jumbo bucket of  balls real easy off a tee and it shouldn't wear you out. This exercise can help you control the club face. I spent a few years where I would not play driver. I then got fitted and practiced and often times it is the best weapon in my bag now.

Thanks for the reply. I have been hitting 100 plus balls with full swing for the last week, and haven't had any fatigue, so I am not worried about repetition. I suppose I just need to find a club, bear down and practice. If it comes as quickly as my irons did, I'll be quite happy. Something about the size/shape of driver is just unnerving and I end up where I always do. Then I'll just have to decide what club to take out of my bag to fit it in.

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1 hour ago, Bonvivant said:

I have been hitting 100 plus balls with full swing for the last week, and haven't had any fatigue, so I am not worried about repetition.

I am in my 50's so wearing myself out for normal play is a consideration for me. I want to stay fresh. I do want to emphasize trying to hit closer targets to practice club face control. If a person can't keep it to 10 or 15 feet either side of a target 100 yards out, how can they expect to keep it in the fairway on a full swing?

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Update. I bought 2 used clubs online today. Titleist 917 series driver and 4W. When they get here they will be range only for a bit, but I am looking forward to learning to hit them. If anyone else has other tips on starting with them let me know!

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49 minutes ago, Bonvivant said:

Update. I bought 2 used clubs online today. Titleist 917 series driver and 4W. When they get here they will be range only for a bit, but I am looking forward to learning to hit them. If anyone else has other tips on starting with them let me know!

All I have is the standard advice you will find on here. Create a swing thread and post some video. The feedback you get will be very helpful. 

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4 minutes ago, Antneye said:

All I have is the standard advice you will find on here. Create a swing thread and post some video. The feedback you get will be very helpful. 

I don't have a good way to take video, but maybe I can get my buddy to film on my phone and post something up. Thanks!

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Bonvivant, true success in this sport appears to me to require a considerable amount of knowledge about the mechanics of a golf swing.  In all likelihood, you are also swinging your irons wrong also. It's just that these clubs can hide the effects of the poor swing mechanics somewhat while the driver can not.  Many of us are on the same road you are starting.  The bad news is that it is a long road unless you are willing to spend lots of money on professional lessons.  The good news is that you have come to the right place.  These guys can help.

At its root, the slice comes from a swing path that is too steep, but likely there are several or even many things that are making your swing difficult to control.  There is no single cure.  Expect to take some time with this.  Simply hitting range balls is not going to help.  But starting a swing thread is the perfect start.  Good luck.

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14 minutes ago, Cantankerish said:

Bonvivant, true success in this sport appears to me to require a considerable amount of knowledge about the mechanics of a golf swing.  In all likelihood, you are also swinging your irons wrong also. It's just that these clubs can hide the effects of the poor swing mechanics somewhat while the driver can not.  Many of us are on the same road you are starting.  The bad news is that it is a long road unless you are willing to spend lots of money on professional lessons.  The good news is that you have come to the right place.  These guys can help.

At its root, the slice comes from a swing path that is too steep, but likely there are several or even many things that are making your swing difficult to control.  There is no single cure.  Expect to take some time with this.  Simply hitting range balls is not going to help.  But starting a swing thread is the perfect start.  Good luck.

Never seen 50 year old blades (Snead Blue Ridges are what I play with) that hide swing flaws, but would love to. I'm not saying that my swing is flawless, but hitting 180 with my 4 iron dead straight the last 2 days, I would say it is in decent order. I've been swinging a club since I was a tyke and used to hit driver decent in my teens, but time off has me lost on what to do (could be flex/fitment issues with the old 1W). I'm going to put in the work and it won't involve professional help, but I will certainly try to get videos up when the big sticks come in. Thanks for the reply.

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1 hour ago, Bonvivant said:

I don't have a good way to take video, but maybe I can get my buddy to film on my phone and post something up. Thanks!

KTUPA Flexible Phone Tripod, Waterproof Travel Tripod for iPhone with Smartphone Mount Remote Control, Portable Tripod for Camera Smartphone and gopro and Microphone https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07S8MYSM6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_F74rDb530RA6A

All you need.

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5 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

KTUPA Flexible Phone Tripod, Waterproof Travel Tripod for iPhone with Smartphone Mount Remote Control, Portable Tripod for Camera Smartphone and gopro and Microphone https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07S8MYSM6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_F74rDb530RA6A

All you need.

Ordered. Thanks!

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You can find some good advice on hitting driver here:

This is specifically aimed at the folks who have reasonably good success with the rest of their game, as you say that you do.  

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I have the opposite problem. I hit my driver and longer clubs straight, but I cannot hit my irons well. I have a Titleist 915D2 driver in 12* loft that is turned up to 13.5 loft. It is also cut to 44” long. I don’t hit it long (160-170), but it goes straight.

All of my clubs are -1” from standard.

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19 hours ago, Bonvivant said:

Update. I bought 2 used clubs online today. Titleist 917 series driver and 4W. When they get here they will be range only for a bit, but I am looking forward to learning to hit them. If anyone else has other tips on starting with them let me know!

I see you have already purchased a driver, I was going to recommend a Cobra F Max Offset driver to help with your fade / slice, bought mine on Ebay at a good price. You can have the shaft shortened to fit your size. good luck with your new club, let us know how it works for you.

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Get comfortable with your driver swing. Its definitely a different swing than the irons. Make sure you're playing the ball from your front heel and make sure you're not to close to the ball. i find a lot of players are pulling across the ball from the outside in to towards the body to get some swing speed. They put a lot of horizontal spin on the ball and can't seem to get away from the slice. I always recommend someone bring a 2x4 to the range and force yourself to swing inside out, or the line closer to your feet then out. I promise when you wack a 2x4 with a club you don't wanna break a couple times you will learn to change your swing plane. A drawn ball will fly longer and release more because of the balls spin. I added around 40yds to my long ball when i switched to playing a draw in college. I just switched from a R11 to a Ping G and added about 30yds and a huge amount of accuracy to the long ball.

 

 Hope that helps a little. 

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Thanks to all for the comments, tips, suggestions, etc. I received my 12 degree 917 f2 and 16.5 degree 4W 917 d2 today and instantly hit the range after work with only those 2 clubs. I focused less on swing mechanics and more on just trying to "hammer the nail" Most strikes were going well with driver, averaging around 220-240 carry with range balls, and had about a 20 yard cut on them, which isn't perfect but it's not too far off. Some were going dead straight, a couple of pull/hooks and only 1 big slice. Trajectory was not as consistent but I was playing around with tee height a bit or at least maybe wasn't as consistent because I have never teed a ball up for a driver that was made in the last 20 years. I only hit about 5 out of the 70-80 ball bucket with the 4W but it went just fine.

Overall, I am happy, and these are going straight in the bag, replacing my persimmon 3W and my 5HY. Interested to see how my first round with them goes and to see what an extra 50-70 yards of total distance off the tee does for my scoring. I might have to have new shafts put on because they didn't come in the shafts specified on 2nd swing. Both are senior shafts when they were labeled as regular. Not the end of the world, and I hit them ok with those shafts, but time will tell on that one.

Thanks again for the help and if anyone has more, please add!

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On 8/3/2019 at 11:20 AM, Bonvivant said:

The problem I have with driver and all woods for the most part is a hellacious slice that leaves me wide right no matter where I aim. On to the question:

When I do find/buy I modern driver, how do I translate a very straight long iron shot into the big boy? I feel like my swing is sound, and my results with the irons would back me up to some extent.

Are you sure you don’t dead pull your iron shots? That is straight but dead left?

if so, it could be your club path... a big slice can be attributed to an OTT swing.

Dead pull irons and a big slice driver/wood could be as simple as that?

Pull hook could be the same thing too. Not 100% but could be...

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