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Blades vs. Cavity Backs - with Data/Video


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Would something splitting the difference between a traditional blade and an SGI offer the best of both worlds?

Colin P.

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51 minutes ago, colin007 said:

Would something splitting the difference between a traditional blade and an SGI offer the best of both worlds?

Best in what way? The SGI club isn't really performing "better" in these graphs.

(I agree that Mark, if he really wanted to do this, would release all the data, and would get something more on the order of 20 shots or so out of each of the areas: center, heel, toe, high, low, low heel, low toe, high toe, high heel - and maybe even one more step out from there - very low, very toe, very high, very heel, and then very low toe, very low heel, very high heel, very high toe… But that's a lot of work. Not for a swing robot, though.)

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Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
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2 hours ago, iacas said:

Best in what way? The SGI club isn't really performing "better" in these graphs.

Yeah, I'm referring to really  bad shots. You know how much a fat shot can hurt distance with a narrow soled skinny blade. You get away with a little more with a wider soled larger headed SGI if you're a bit heavy

Colin P.

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1 minute ago, colin007 said:

Yeah, I'm referring to really  bad shots. You know how much a fat shot can hurt distance with a narrow soled skinny blade. You get away with a little more with a wider soled larger headed SGI if you're a bit heavy

That has nothing to do with how the ball comes off the face, though, just how much less the wider sole tends to dig into the ground.

Bill

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I’d rather see the same experiment done with a 20hcp golfer. 

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9 hours ago, Vinsk said:

I’d rather see the same experiment done with a 20hcp golfer. 

I suspect that will only reveal what a 20 does.... regardless of the club 😝.

JK. I think there's a reason why they make SGIs ugly. It's a sign... A sign that says 'stay away'. 

13 hours ago, colin007 said:

Would something splitting the difference between a traditional blade and an SGI offer the best of both worlds?

Colin, they ugly. 

Years ago I bought a used set of SGI Wilson 'fat shafts' for $30 from Golfsmith just for giggles. I honestly couldn't get over how ugly they looked long enough to realize how terrible they felt. I was a 20+ then. Nothing I did made me wanna keep them.

Edit: Hmm.. not sure why my posts didn't merge. Thought I had more time. Sorry all.

Edited by GolfLug

Vishal S.

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This has been a really interesting topic and discussion. 
Just to add to it. Check out Mark's most recent video. This is literally the very next video Mark put up after the one which started this thread. The part that's pertinent to this discussion is from about 25:40 to about 28:00. Listen to the conversation between Mark and Matt and comment. 

I found it interesting. 

 

 

 

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A mix I am forever tinkering with. 

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1 hour ago, ChetlovesMer said:

The part that's pertinent to this discussion is from about 25:40 to about 28:00

So he's walking back what he said and saying that SGI is the way to go, possibly for everyone? Let me know if I interpreted this incorrectly.

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When was each of the videos filmed?

Either way, someone should ask him about that comment.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
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15 minutes ago, Bonvivant said:

So he's walking back what he said and saying that SGI is the way to go, possibly for everyone? Let me know if I interpreted this incorrectly.

I'm not sure. I just think its interesting, because it does seem like he's saying everyone should be using SGI for their long irons. I'm wondering if he's advocating a combination set?

I find the whole thing fascinating. Of course I realize that it's more important to improve your swing than buy new equipment. Never-the-less, I'm always excited to see all the new shiny stuff that comes out every year.... even if it really isn't any better than the new shiny stuff that came out last year. 

3 minutes ago, iacas said:

When was each of the videos filmed?

Either way, someone should ask him about that comment.

Filming wise. I'm not sure. I assume the testing was done in his backyard  garden during UK's lockdown. The on course stuff looks to be post lockdown... but of course there's no way for me to really know. I'll ask him and see if he responds.

Any which way you look at it. I'm enjoying the discussion.

My bag is an ever-changing combination of clubs. 

A mix I am forever tinkering with. 

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I think that just highlights how easily you can be swayed by one piece of data.  Lockey was clearly bothered by par 3s all day and hit a worse than average shot for him on yet another par 3.  After that, he decided to give it a go with a chunkier iron, and maybe he was more relaxed due to it not really mattering and hit a good one and now that's why Crossfield said what he said in the moment.  

I don't think I can argue that SGI/GI irons do well for excessively mishit strikes compared to blades, but if you're close to the center I've seen what I'd otherwise call fliers from those same clubs that, if you're trying to score, can screw you just as much as anything else.  

Personally, I don't think I'll ever get away from blades.  It keeps me focused on my swing when in the moment, and keeps me introspective if I feel like I didn't hit it pure so I can better track what I think I need to work on.  

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For the last 4 years I've played a set of Mizuno MP4 blades, and before that I had the Ping S55's (a CB blade of sorts). Currently I'd say I'm not playing consistently enough to avoid hurting myself by using the MP4's, but I think just about anyone would be well-suited playing a set of clubs similar to the S55's. They were forgiving enough that larger mishits aren't disastrous, but they do provide noticeably more control and consistency than any of the SGI offerings.

That said, after playing blades for a while there are only three types of mis-hits that I feel blades actually punish any more than CB, GI, or SGI irons do. The first, and biggest difference to me, is when you hit it fat. GI and SGI irons protect you from hitting it fat because they skid or bounce off the turf quite a bit, while blades and CB irons can dig deeper into the turf. The trade-off there is that it sucks to use a GI or SGI club when the ball is sitting in a dip or a divot. The second mishit punished more heavily by blades is toe strikes, just because most blade designs have very little mass and weight out near the toe. CB, GI, and SGI irons at least have perimeter weighting that makes these misses slightly less penal. The final shot I feel blades punish more heavily than other designs is catching the ball too high on the face. The "bouncy" face designs for GI and SGI irons mean you'll retain more ball speed there, and because the CB lacks a large mass behind the sweet spot there isn't as big a difference when you catch the ball a little higher. Blades just have nothing behind the ball high up on the face and it's particularly noticeable once you get too far above the sweet spot.

For other shots, including small misses as shown in this data and especially thin or heel misses, the only difference I've found between blades and the rest is how good or bad it feels. Blades can really hurt to hit thin on a cold day, but that thin miss will perform about the same as a less painful thin miss using a SGI club. Heel misses are similar for all the clubs since they've all got some weight and mass over there and any twisting that perimeter weighting could alleviate is minimal since you're closer to the axis of rotation there than a toe miss would be. Heel misses can sometimes be a lot worse for GI and SGI irons because of the offset, which makes it easier/more likely that you get a shank instead of just a heel mishit. 

I don't think most golfers would be well-suited by playing MB blades, but I do think most golfers would be best suited by playing something similar to the old S55 irons or their modern equivalents. They provide increased consistency compared to GI/SGI irons while being a bit more comfortable to mishit and mitigating the effects of 2/3 scenarios where a blade punishes you more than other irons. You will still be punished more for fat shots than if you had a GI/SGI iron, but on all other types of mishits you'd be hard pressed to find a measurable and substantial difference. The only people who I believe can truly benefit from GI/SGI irons are the very infrequent or very new golfers who are far more likely to hit the ball fat and who have swings inconsistent enough for any difference in the club's consistency to be meaningless.

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What people forget is Mark actually played SGI irons for a time. (And goofs around with those Cleveland HB Turbo irons). Mark played Mizuno JPX-EZ irons back in 2014 before he was sponsored by Titleist and now SRI Sports (Cleveland, Srixon, and XXIO’s parent company). 
 

Mark makes a valid point in this video. Chunky Monkey is inconsistent with varying quality strikes versus blade. I’m not sure why. If we did this test with Iron Byron, would the results be similar? 
 

The thing I wanted to see was the left and right dispersion but maybe it’s there and I just didn’t see it.

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37 minutes ago, onthehunt526 said:

Mark makes a valid point in this video. Chunky Monkey is inconsistent with varying quality strikes versus blade

I don’t think he does. His ‘mis-hits’ were those of a scratch golfer, not Joe golf. Like Erik said, a better analysis would be graphing toe shots, heel shots and above/below sweet spot shots. Best done with Iron Byron, but a golfer of his level could probably do it quite well.

Edited by Vinsk

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Just now, Vinsk said:

I don’t think he does. His ‘mis-hits’ were those of a scratch golfer, not Joe golf. Like Erik said, a better analysis would be graphing toe shots, heel shots and above/below sweet spot shots. Best done with Iron Byron, but a golfer of his level could probably do it quite well.

I agree. This is a relatively small sample size and it’s only qualifiers were 5mm from center for poor strikes and 10mm for very poor. 
 

Someone said if you hit a blade out toward the toe, there’s less mass there so it comes out dead. I think this goes back to the old “D-plane” discussion though. As a low single figure handicap, I’ll say this, I played M6 irons last year for a bit. (I though my blades were gone by that’s either here nor there) if you’re talking about just distance dispersion... the cavity back is going to have a bigger pattern on distance dispersion on “good” strikes than a blade.
 

I agree if you hit a blade on the toe. The ball  goes nowhere and usually straight right or occasionally left if you’re in to out. You have a bit of a chance with a cavity back in that regard. I’d be willing to guess if you were to take this test to the extreme, Chunky Monkey may come out on top. 
 

Have Rory (your golf travel Rory not #1 in the world Rory) do this test and see if you get similar results.

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Anecdotally that makes sense.  I have and will always play blades.  All my irons (3-LW) are blades.

One of the buddies I play with has a new taylormade cavity back irons.  He doesn't know what distance will come out with his irons.  Once in a while he would hit 7 iron 200 yards and other times he would hit only 150 whereas his median (not average) yardage with that iron is 175.  It really baffles him how his iron distances can range so much.  But 90% of the time it's around 175.

I always like the feel of a pured iron shot with the blades.  I can't see myself changing to cavity back.

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On 5/22/2020 at 6:18 AM, GolfLug said:

Colin, they ugly. 

Lol hey buddy!!

I was thinking something in between, like AP2s or CBs or JPXs. Nice compact cavity backs. 

Colin P.

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2 hours ago, colin007 said:

Lol hey buddy!!

I was thinking something in between, like AP2s or CBs or JPXs. Nice compact cavity backs. 

Or Srixon Z785 irons. 😂

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What's in Shane's Bag?     

Ball: 2021 :srixon: Z-Star XV

Driver: :srixon:: ZX7  3W: ZX 7W: :tmade: SLDR

I (4-AW): :srixon: ZX7 54°, 58°, 62°: :cleveland: RTX Zipcore

Putter: Meridian Charleston with my daughters names on the rear bumpers.

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