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Not Sure What to Put in the Bag as a 14th Club


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So the 12 clubs I use most often and will obviously keep are:

-Driver

-4i-PW

-52, 56, 60

- Putter

 

I've got a 2 iron that I plan on using for a safer option on the tee. I'm not great with my driver, and am pretty good with my irons so I use a lot of 4i or 5i off the tee. I mainly have been working on the 2i on the range, I used to slice a lot and chunk a few. But my last range session was a lot better, and I think I'll be able to incorporate it into my game more this season. 

 

But for the 14th club I am uncertain of what I should use. I have a 4 wood, but I absolutely despise woods. I'll hit a few good ones with it, but I'll hit plenty of slices, plenty of shots higher than a lob wedge, and plenty of just flat mishits. I have a 64 degree wedge. I can pitch okay with it, buy it is so rarely useful, and I don't have a great sense of distance control with it. 

 

I've had hybrids in the past, but like woods I'm not great with them. The last time I tried one was at a golf store in a simulator. A longer hybrid had a ball flight and distance of like a 7 iron for me. 

 

Do you think a 3 iron is my best bet? 

 

My handicap index is a 20 if that is relevant.

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26 minutes ago, StKildaSenators said:

My handicap index is a 20 if that is relevant.

Do you think a 3 iron is my best bet?

No.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
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  • iacas changed the title to Not Sure What to Put in the Bag as a 14th Club
29 minutes ago, iacas said:

No.

I get what you are saying, but I don't like your dismissive attitude. And I'd much prefer a constructive comment that gave a suggestion and a reason. 

 

My handicap may be higher, but I know that my iron play is more akin to a someone with maybe a 10 or 12 handicap. What brings me down is absolutely terrible chipping, throwing away 3 or 4 strokes a game due to struggling with putts inside 2 feet, and not really having a good consistent club longer than my 4 iron (which goes about 205). 

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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17 minutes ago, StKildaSenators said:

I get what you are saying, but I don't like your dismissive attitude.

It's not dismissive. I answered your question.

17 minutes ago, StKildaSenators said:

My handicap may be higher, but I know that my iron play is more akin to a someone with maybe a 10 or 12 handicap.

Most 5s shouldn't use a 3I. I know very few scratch or better golfers who use a 3I. You often can't even buy 3I these days as part of a set.

17 minutes ago, StKildaSenators said:

What brings me down is absolutely terrible chipping, throwing away 3 or 4 strokes a game due to struggling with putts inside 2 feet, and not really having a good consistent club longer than my 4 iron (which goes about 205). 

Okey dokey.

Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
Director of Instruction Golf Evolution • Owner, The Sand Trap .com • AuthorLowest Score Wins
Golf Digest "Best Young Teachers in America" 2016-17 & "Best in State" 2017-20 • WNY Section PGA Teacher of the Year 2019 :edel: :true_linkswear:

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5 minutes ago, iacas said:

It's not dismissive. I answered your question.

Most 5s shouldn't use a 3I. I know very few scratch or better golfers who use a 3I. You often can't even buy 3I these days as part of a set.

Okey dokey.

Okay, well then would you have any recommendations for someone who hits their irons well, but struggles to hit woods and hybrids? I've heard for years and years that woods and hybrids are supposed to be easy to hit, and for me they just aren't. 

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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Go to some place like a PGA Superstore and ask questions.    They will make suggestions and allow you to hit different clubs.   You won't know without hitting different options.   Erik isn't wrong about the long irons.   Most newer sets stop at a 6 iron and go with hybrids or fairway woods for a good reason.   

For the average person that isn't attempting to make the PGAT, hybrids and fairway woods are easier to hit than a longer iron.   It takes a greater swing speed to hit a longer iron. 

I bet if you polled the better players on this or any forum, you'd find the majority of them don't have a 3 iron and the majority have either a hybrid or a fairway wood.

Good luck in your search.

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8 hours ago, StKildaSenators said:

So the 12 clubs I use most often and will obviously keep are:

-Driver

-4i-PW

-52, 56, 60

- Putter

 

I've got a 2 iron that I plan on using for a safer option on the tee. I'm not great with my driver, and am pretty good with my irons so I use a lot of 4i or 5i off the tee. I mainly have been working on the 2i on the range, I used to slice a lot and chunk a few. But my last range session was a lot better, and I think I'll be able to incorporate it into my game more this season. 

 

But for the 14th club I am uncertain of what I should use. I have a 4 wood, but I absolutely despise woods. I'll hit a few good ones with it, but I'll hit plenty of slices, plenty of shots higher than a lob wedge, and plenty of just flat mishits. I have a 64 degree wedge. I can pitch okay with it, buy it is so rarely useful, and I don't have a great sense of distance control with it. 

 

I've had hybrids in the past, but like woods I'm not great with them. The last time I tried one was at a golf store in a simulator. A longer hybrid had a ball flight and distance of like a 7 iron for me. 

 

Do you think a 3 iron is my best bet? 

 

My handicap index is a 20 if that is relevant.

Longer irons are tough to play with. They have the same dime to quarter size sweet spot as your other irons but are longer and moving faster, so the sweet spot is tougher to hit. Woods and hybrids are more forgiving and have a larger sweet spot.

I use either 4W 3H or 3W 5W in my set between the 4 iron and driver. I also try to swing smoother with them so I have a better chance to hit that sweet spot. I still miss a bit with them.

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8 hours ago, StKildaSenators said:

I've heard for years and years that woods and hybrids are supposed to be easy to hit, and for me they just aren't. 

Maybe it's the Indian not the arrow?

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Two things are likely true here:

  • You're not the ball striker you think you are with long irons.
  • It's nearly impossible for anyone here to help you without seeing your swing.

To the former, this topic might apply. To the latter, this is where you do it.

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Erik J. Barzeski —  I knock a ball. It goes in a gopher hole. 🏌🏼‍♂️
Director of Instruction Golf Evolution • Owner, The Sand Trap .com • AuthorLowest Score Wins
Golf Digest "Best Young Teachers in America" 2016-17 & "Best in State" 2017-20 • WNY Section PGA Teacher of the Year 2019 :edel: :true_linkswear:

Check Out: New Topics | TST Blog | Golf Terms | Instructional Content | Analyzr | LSW | Instructional Droplets

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4 hours ago, iacas said:

Two things are likely true here:

  • You're not the ball striker you think you are with long irons.
  • It's nearly impossible for anyone here to help you without seeing your swing.

To the former, this topic might apply. To the latter, this is where you do it.

Sorry I kinda snapped at you yesterday. I just got a little frustrated feeling that some of what I said was ignored. 

 

I don't claim to be some super good ball striker, just relatively good for my handicap. And I also find woods and hybrids much more difficult to hit. I'm not great with my long irons, but I made huge strides with my 4 iron over the last couple years and now hit it better than my 4 wood.

 

I just don't seem to know how how to hit woods and hybrids. And I think there is a psychological factor too where it just feels a bit awkward to be using such a huge club on the fairway. 

 

I'll probably try and film some swings next time I go to the driving range. 

5 hours ago, klineka said:

Maybe it's the Indian not the arrow?

Oh definitely. I just think it makes sense do use the clubs that best fit my game. Although if I want to get my handicap down lower I definitely should try and improve all around. 

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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27 minutes ago, StKildaSenators said:

I just don't seem to know how how to hit woods and hybrids. And I think there is a psychological factor too where it just feels a bit awkward to be using such a huge club on the fairway. 

Hybrids you're supposed to play much like your long irons. I don't really like them anymore because I have a tendency to hook them. I'm probably going to replace my 2h with a 5w soon.

Fairway woods are meant to be hit off the ground with a shallower angle. You don't want to take too steep of a swing that you're taking much of a divot. If you have difficulty with the length you can try to choke down on the grip a little.

I honestly don't think, based on what you're written so far, that a 3i is really the answer. Maybe learning how to hit the fairway woods better so you can play your 4w or even get a 5w might be the play. What are your yardages through the bag? Do you even need another club just because you can fit one in?

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17 minutes ago, billchao said:

Hybrids you're supposed to play much like your long irons. I don't really like them anymore because I have a tendency to hook them. I'm probably going to replace my 2h with a 5w soon.

Fairway woods are meant to be hit off the ground with a shallower angle. You don't want to take too steep of a swing that you're taking much of a divot. If you have difficulty with the length you can try to choke down on the grip a little.

I honestly don't think, based on what you're written so far, that a 3i is really the answer. Maybe learning how to hit the fairway woods better so you can play your 4w or even get a 5w might be the play. What are your yardages through the bag? Do you even need another club just because you can fit one in?

Yeah, in the lessons I have taken we have worked on swinging less steeply. I probably still swing too steep with woods. 

Average yardages through my bag according to my Garmin watch (won't be 100% accurate due to sometimes the watch not picking up a shot, or me accidently clicking the wrong club):

60 - 100 yds

56 - 106 yds

52 - 125 yds

PW - 149 yds (this one seems off to me)

9i - 149 yds

8i - 157 yds

7i - 167 yds

6i - 178 yds

5i - 190 yds

4i - 202 yds

 

And longer than that is where I get into trouble:

2i - 208 yds (small sample size on this one, still mostly just practicing with it one the range as the slice % is too high for my liking)

4 wood - 202 yds (haven't used it much last season due to not liking it)

Driver - 241 yds

 

My driver has a huge variance as well. So for example on Sunday (the first round of the year) I hit it 5 times. 2 were big slices (186, and 179 well off to the right). 2 were my hands getting too closed and hitting a much too low draw/hook (239 and 225 on the left rough), and one came out low like the draw, but actually had a fade on it (210, just off the right side of the fairway. Looking back at some past rounds, the good drives (maybe 10% of shots) tend to be between 250 and 280.

So when it is outside of 200 yds is where I really get into a lot of trouble. I will often play irons off the tee, or on a par 5 lay up to gap wedge range to try and give myself a comfortable shot in.

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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1 hour ago, StKildaSenators said:

So when it is outside of 200 yds is where I really get into a lot of trouble. I will often play irons off the tee, or on a par 5 lay up to gap wedge range to try and give myself a comfortable shot in.

Since it sounds like your misses with driver are still generally in play, hitting irons off the tee frequently and laying up to a specific wedge are strategy mistakes and are almost certainly costing you strokes over the long run. 

Driver: :callaway: Rogue Max ST LS
Woods:  :cobra: Darkspeed LS 3Wood/3Hybrid
Irons: :tmade: P770 (4-PW)
Wedges: :callaway: MD3 50   MD5 54 58 degree  
Putter: :odyssey:  White Hot RX #1
Ball: :titleist: ProV1x Left Dash

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14 minutes ago, klineka said:

Since it sounds like your misses with driver are still generally in play, hitting irons off the tee frequently and laying up to a specific wedge are strategy mistakes and are almost certainly costing you strokes over the long run. 

Oh I can definitely miss my driver way out of play. A slice is usually on the next fairway over. I generally only hit driver when there is a lot of room on the right. 

 

But I just finished up at the range and actually found what seems to be a really good swing thought for my drives. The first half of the my drives were all over the place, but the second half was really solid. I'm definitely going to try and keep working with that swing thought. 

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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2 hours ago, StKildaSenators said:

Yeah, in the lessons I have taken we have worked on swinging less steeply. I probably still swing too steep with woods. 

Average yardages through my bag according to my Garmin watch (won't be 100% accurate due to sometimes the watch not picking up a shot, or me accidently clicking the wrong club):

60 - 100 yds

56 - 106 yds

52 - 125 yds

PW - 149 yds (this one seems off to me)

9i - 149 yds

8i - 157 yds

7i - 167 yds

6i - 178 yds

5i - 190 yds

4i - 202 yds

 

And longer than that is where I get into trouble:

2i - 208 yds (small sample size on this one, still mostly just practicing with it one the range as the slice % is too high for my liking)

4 wood - 202 yds (haven't used it much last season due to not liking it)

Driver - 241 yds

 

My driver has a huge variance as well. So for example on Sunday (the first round of the year) I hit it 5 times. 2 were big slices (186, and 179 well off to the right). 2 were my hands getting too closed and hitting a much too low draw/hook (239 and 225 on the left rough), and one came out low like the draw, but actually had a fade on it (210, just off the right side of the fairway. Looking back at some past rounds, the good drives (maybe 10% of shots) tend to be between 250 and 280.

So when it is outside of 200 yds is where I really get into a lot of trouble. I will often play irons off the tee, or on a par 5 lay up to gap wedge range to try and give myself a comfortable shot in.

So according to the above paragraph, you hit the driver between 179-280 yards. I am no instructor but one thing I would take a look at is where are you hitting the ball on the clubface. Foot powder spray is good for this. Also, what flex shaft are you playing in the driver? To weak of a shaft for your swing speed can cause problems. A fitter/ instructor can help you there. Aside from just a faulty swing, those are a couple of things that could play into your shotgun blast of drives. I speak from experience.  

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@StKildaSenators ok I haven't been on the site for a bit and just got back on to see what's going on and stuff.  Great site.

Here is my 2 cents worth.

1) Get a video of your swing and post per their instructions, you will get some great insight into what's going on.  Especially with the Driver.

2) Find an Instructional Pro, someone who teaches and has a Trackman or such, films every last swing you make.  Goes over the video with you and works thru your game.

You will be amazed if you stick to this how quick a Driver corrects with dedication to what your instructor is telling you to do. Also, I bet the instructor fixes your Fairway wood, personally I would gravitate to a 5 Wood as that is - for me - easier to handle and hit square so the distance is just as good as a 4 Wood for me.

As you grow with your instructor you will figure out how your bag should be set up.  Man, if you can hit a 60 why bag a 64?  Just me but learning all the ins and outs of a 60 is darn tough, a 64 with a GHIN like yours and mine (16.0 at the moment) is just crazy stuff.

But and what this site in the past has pushed doubt it's changed - get that Driver going, it's the fastest way to put yourself into position to drop your scores.

Also - the yardage you mention per club.  Is that carry or total yards?  When it comes to this wonderfully crazy game Carry Yards are what you have to know.  Total yards change day to day based upon course conditions and such.  Carry is your game.

My single most important tip - HAVE FUN - with this crazy game.  Learn how to enjoy the sideways shots as well as the one's that keep you coming back.

The golf swing is one hellava athletic move, no one ever masters it. 

- Dean

Driver: PXG GEN3 Proto X Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Orange
Fairway wood: 5 Wood PXG 0341 GEN2 hzrdus smoke yellow

2 Iron PXG XP Evenflow Blue

3 Utility Iron Srixon 3 20*
Irons:  5 thru PW PXG GEN3 XP Steelfiber 95 -  Wedges: Mizuno T7 48, 52, 56 and 60 Recoil 110 shafts 6
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17 minutes ago, djake said:

@StKildaSenators ok I haven't been on the site for a bit and just got back on to see what's going on and stuff.  Great site.

Here is my 2 cents worth.

1) Get a video of your swing and post per their instructions, you will get some great insight into what's going on.  Especially with the Driver.

2) Find an Instructional Pro, someone who teaches and has a Trackman or such, films every last swing you make.  Goes over the video with you and works thru your game.

You will be amazed if you stick to this how quick a Driver corrects with dedication to what your instructor is telling you to do. Also, I bet the instructor fixes your Fairway wood, personally I would gravitate to a 5 Wood as that is - for me - easier to handle and hit square so the distance is just as good as a 4 Wood for me.

As you grow with your instructor you will figure out how your bag should be set up.  Man, if you can hit a 60 why bag a 64?  Just me but learning all the ins and outs of a 60 is darn tough, a 64 with a GHIN like yours and mine (16.0 at the moment) is just crazy stuff.

But and what this site in the past has pushed doubt it's changed - get that Driver going, it's the fastest way to put yourself into position to drop your scores.

Also - the yardage you mention per club.  Is that carry or total yards?  When it comes to this wonderfully crazy game Carry Yards are what you have to know.  Total yards change day to day based upon course conditions and such.  Carry is your game.

My single most important tip - HAVE FUN - with this crazy game.  Learn how to enjoy the sideways shots as well as the one's that keep you coming back.

The golf swing is one hellava athletic move, no one ever masters it. 

I actually did post a video of my swing today. Those are total distances from my Garmin watch. I don't have as good of an idea with my carry distances. I should go to a range with Trackman some day and get them recorded. 

Golf in the summer, curl in the winter.

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