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ForePlayAce

When Is It Time for a New Driver?

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Go and look at any video of any professional tournament from 2013. 

Ask yourself what the players are lacking in their driving and how using the drivers that they had six years ago would disadvantage you.

6 hours ago, ForePlayAce said:

I agree, $500+ is a bit too much to afford. If you don't mind me asking, where do you get used clubs online? I've heard stories about counterfeit clubs and stuff like that, so if I do buy online I'd like to avoid that.

3ballsgolf is an excellent source for pre-owned clubs.

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33 minutes ago, ChetlovesMer said:

You are correct, in a way. If you hit the ball in the center of the sweet spot, and if the launch angle and path are going to be maxed out, the rules of golf only allow for a given COR (Coefficient of Restitution). Which means the ball speed can only be a given percentage of the club head speed. In theory, any driver made in the last 20 years will have the same COR for the center of the sweet spot. That is not true for the rest of the face.

The area where drivers HAVE improved over the last 20 years is for off-center hits. Divers have gotten better and better at delivering higher and higher COR for hits that are further and further from the center of the sweet spot. When somebody speaks of driver forgiveness, this is what they are referring to. 

In addition, some drivers are more "workable" than others. Which is basically the shape of the face will create some degree of "self-correcting". This is advantageous for some golfers, but a hinderance to other golfers. 

So, while a 19 year old driver will perform just as well or nearly as well (assuming the shaft fits the player's swing) as this year's model on hits from the very center of the face. The newer driver is likely to produce longer "average" drives because most of us use far more than just the center of the face. How much longer depends on a myriad of factors.

Oh, and most importantly … the new driver is shiny... Hmm.... I like shiny things. 

Yeah, to some degree, but I still think those forgiveness and workability are drastically overrated buzz words.  I do love my Rogue though now that you mention it haha.

 

1 hour ago, Bonvivant said:

Another point, sometimes a new club can make you want to practice with it more. You could probably get the results you want with some good hard practice, but may not want to practice that much with the old club.

I guess, but that's a vain way of looking at it.  I like to play golf and I like to play what works.  I have (mostly) a few years older clubs and they play well.  I don't agree that it is the "newness" of the club, but rather the performance and "likability" of the club.  Example, I game 2011 Nike VR TW forged irons.  We know why.  They're not new at all, but they perform really well and they look darn nice in my bag.  

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2 minutes ago, ncates00 said:

I guess, but that's a vain way of looking at it.  I like to play golf and I like to play what works.  I have (mostly) a few years older clubs and they play well.  I don't agree that it is the "newness" of the club, but rather the performance and "likability" of the club.  Example, I game 2011 Nike VR TW forged irons.  We know why.  They're not new at all, but they perform really well and they look darn nice in my bag.  

When I say new, I mean new to the player. If someone isn't happy with their drives, it is easy to blame it on the club and not practice much with that club because of it. Just a mental thing of being bored/frustrated with performance, and sometimes a purchase of anything is enough to get you over the hump and back on the practice horse because you know you need to learn to hit something new (to you). That is kind of what happened with me this year. I decided I was going to get back into it, but had a hard time because I had the same clubs since I was fully grown (the last 14 years), and just needed a refresh to get me excited about it.

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4 minutes ago, Bonvivant said:

When I say new, I mean new to the player. If someone isn't happy with their drives, it is easy to blame it on the club and not practice much with that club because of it. Just a mental thing of being bored/frustrated with performance, and sometimes a purchase of anything is enough to get you over the hump and back on the practice horse because you know you need to learn to hit something new (to you). That is kind of what happened with me this year. I decided I was going to get back into it, but had a hard time because I had the same clubs since I was fully grown (the last 14 years), and just needed a refresh to get me excited about it.

I understood what you meant.  I guess that works for some people.  Playing well and enjoying the game is good enough for me.  I think the "I need something shiny to make me excited to play golf" (for ME) is a silly reason and one that is typically found in players that don't play to a good standard or stick with the game very long.  Similarly, some people play golf purely for the social aspect of it.  I don't.  I enjoy the company of others, but I'm perfectly happy being alone--practicing and playing because I love the game.  I find intrinsic value in my own performance in playing golf (however mediocre it is haha). 

To me, shiny clubs is just a temporary release of euphoric consumerism that will eventually dissipate after you hit a few bad shots.  

(None of this is meant to implicate you; it's just my observation of my own friends.)  🙂 

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8 minutes ago, ncates00 said:

I think the "I need something shiny to make me excited to play golf" (for ME) is a silly reason and one that is typically found in players that don't play to a good standard or stick with the game very long.  

I'm not exactly sure what you mean. But I think I get your point. I will say this; Some folks who love golf are just really into the equipment stuff and some just aren't.

I have both kinds of people included in my golf friends. One of them, hasn't changed a thing in his bag for more than 15 years. Another plays a new set of clubs nearly every year. Some of us like to sit around and chit chat about the new equipment coming out. We go to the golf shows. We take trips out to Golf Galaxy when the new stuff arrives just to hit them. We don't always buy new stuff, but man, we love testing the new stuff when it comes out. 

That's me. I go out and hit all the new clubs. I'm interested in the new tech. I find that sometimes the new tech is old recycled, and or renamed tech, but its interesting all the same. One of my buddies and I already have an appointment to go hit the new Cobra Speed Zone driver the day after it comes out. I'm already playing a Cobra F9, which is less than a year old and I love it. So, I'm unlikely to change. But you can bet I'll hit the new one. 

By the same token, the afore mentioned guy who hasn't changed clubs in over 15 years is always like. "Bah, new clubs aren't any better than the old ones, bah." He never joins us on our excursions to go test out the new stuff. … unless it's just to ridicule and mock. 

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4 minutes ago, ChetlovesMer said:

I'm not exactly sure what you mean. But I think I get your point. I will say this; Some folks who love golf are just really into the equipment stuff and some just aren't.

I have both kinds of people included in my golf friends. One of them, hasn't changed a thing in his bag for more than 15 years. Another plays a new set of clubs nearly every year. Some of us like to sit around and chit chat about the new equipment coming out. We go to the golf shows. We take trips out to Golf Galaxy when the new stuff arrives just to hit them. We don't always buy new stuff, but man, we love testing the new stuff when it comes out. 

That's me. I go out and hit all the new clubs. I'm interested in the new tech. I find that sometimes the new tech is old recycled, and or renamed tech, but its interesting all the same. One of my buddies and I already have an appointment to go hit the new Cobra Speed Zone driver the day after it comes out. I'm already playing a Cobra F9, which is less than a year old and I love it. So, I'm unlikely to change. But you can bet I'll hit the new one. 

By the same token, the afore mentioned guy who hasn't changed clubs in over 15 years is always like. "Bah, new clubs aren't any better than the old ones, bah." He never joins us on our excursions to go test out the new stuff. … unless it's just to ridicule and mock. 

Yeah I get that too.  I have friends, like you, that like to hit everything.  I'm just really happy with my bag.  It took a while for me to even get a new driver.  But I liked the way the Rogue felt and I liked the ball speed results.  In the bag she went. 

Something has to be really measurably better than what I already have in order for me to buy it.  I'll test anything on my GC2, and it's fun, but I just really like my current setup.

I'm not completely an old fart--I've got a Rogue and a Gapr hybrid!  

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I liked the Rogue as well. I preferred the Rogue Sub Zero which I found to sit just a bit flatter. Where as the standard Rogue was more upright. 

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No doubt modern clubs are better than ones made 10 to 15 years ago, but they are not that much better when hit out of the middle of the club face.  Where you see benefits is in off-centre hits.

I don't really see a need to purchase a new driver unless you are struggling and the specs don't suit you.

Ideally lessons and a session on the simulator will help a lot more than a new club, but that being said, check out the specs of your current club and change shaft/head/club/ball if it doesn't suit you.  Be aware that changing a golf ball can affect how you play.  Better/worse dispersion and length.

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1 minute ago, ncates00 said:

I understood what you meant.  I guess that works for some people.  Playing well and enjoying the game is good enough for me.  I think the "I need something shiny to make me excited to play golf" (for ME) is a silly reason and one that is typically found in players that don't play to a good standard or stick with the game very long.  Similarly, some people play golf purely for the social aspect of it.  I don't.  I enjoy the company of others, but I'm perfectly happy being alone--practicing and playing because I love the game.  I find intrinsic value in my own performance in playing golf (however mediocre it is haha). 

To me, shiny clubs is just a temporary release of euphoric consumerism that will eventually dissipate after you hit a few bad shots.  

(None of this is meant to implicate you; it's just my observation of my own friends.)  🙂 

I definitely see this too sometimes. My case was kind of extreme because the clubs I was playing with before this year were from the 60s. But a 20 year gap in tech (for OP) is significant enough to warrant a 100-200 dollar purchase, I think.

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On 11/20/2019 at 4:56 PM, ForePlayAce said:

So my question is, do you guys think that it would be worth it for me to upgrade? I was thinking about seeing if the price for the TaylorMade M5 drops when they release their new 2020 driver.

Since you are asking... probably now... especially if you bought that driver new.

If you plan to keep your new driver for a number of years, do it right, research new and recent drivers, hit a lot of them, and get fit.  10 years from now the difference is negligible.

John

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On 11/21/2019 at 6:03 AM, ForePlayAce said:

I agree, $500+ is a bit too much to afford. If you don't mind me asking, where do you get used clubs online? I've heard stories about counterfeit clubs and stuff like that, so if I do buy online I'd like to avoid that.

I have gotten my used clubs at Callaway Pre-Owned. The clubs' condition are generally understated, they are authentic, have multiple shaft options, and are priced really well.

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After the rotten season I've had, my driver is done like dinner.

Sure my swing sucks. It will suck with a new driver as well, but I'm not mentally prepared to deal with my old one for another season. Truthfully, I think the shaft flexes too much on the old one. If I spend the big money on a fitting, the guy should be able to tell me for sure. For all I know, maybe it's something entirely different.

Either way, I'm stocking up a fund to address the 1W situation for next year.

Edited by mcanadiens

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Hello,

I saw a serious test with old golf balls (1970 to 2000) and old drivers vs new one (2019). The conclusion is that new balls take less sidespin and are longer.

Regarding the drivers, the distance is the same (+/- 5yards) but the new drivers  gives  less effect on the balls.

So, if your driver is more than 10 years, a change won't give you a lot more distance, but tons of forgiveness and/or feeling. Some clubs are better than others  of course.

For example, if you like working the ball, take a Mizuno ST120, if you want to smash it like never and give you a chance to stay on the fairway, the Ping G400Max is your best choice.

If you want a good balance, the Epic Flash is worth a try. And if you are athletic, and like maximum feeling, give a try to the Cobra F9

Regarding only distance, all those drivers are playing in the same garden. Anyway to get the best of a club, the shaft must be considered seriously.

Sorry, Mizuno ST190 😅

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