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Game Improvement Irons (G430 Irons Review)


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I was struggling a bit with distance with my old irons (mizuno jpx irons) so decided to get fit for the Ping G430 irons, ending up with 5-PW in reg ping 2.0 awt blue dot +1/4 inch.

 

Here are my thoughts on these irons after about 30 rounds (mid handicapper):

 

Positives:

-The clubs are definitely significantly longer and when struck fairly centrally produce nice high ball flights. 

 

-I have not noticed a lack of spin and have been holding greens no problem when the iron is struck well.

 

-When struck out the toe (which is usually my miss) I am not noticing a falloff in distance.

 

-The long irons, my 5 iron in particular, is absolutely fantastic off the tee. I use it as a driving iron for placement mainly. 

 

-The irons look and sound very nice, ping have done a great job with hiding the cavity on address. They do not look like super game improvement irons while standing over the ball.

 

Negatives:

-When I looked up the lofts on these new irons they are all just a club longer as far as I can tell, the pitching wedge has 41 degrees of loft which has led to some considerable gapping issues lower down in my bag. Ping do offer a range of wedges in the G430 to combat this but obviously means considerable additional cost.

 

-I have found the clubs lower than 7 iron (8,9,W) to be extremely 'jumpy'. What I mean by this is depending on the lie/strike I am getting really unpredictable results, sometimes the wedge will go 110 yards sometimes it will go 135 yards (left or right). What I am trying to say is the faces are very hot so if you sometimes get a bit quick or jabby with your swing, it causes real problems. I often think I would rather have just fatted it 50 yards and had another shot from the fairway.

 

-To add to this: I have found that I have very little greenside feel with these irons. Previously I would regularly use my 8,9,PW for short game as I found it more reliable than always pulling out a sand wedge, I like a nice controllable lower ball flight which can run towards the pin. I have found that I was not able to get any feel around the green with these as the faces are just too hot.

 

-The cavity inserts (pur tech thingy) on my lower clubs 9,W have been scratched and I think this was from being in the same pocket in my carry bag. I would consider head covers if you buy these. 

 

General thoughts / conclusion:

To be honest I am having some serious doubts about game improvement irons, I suspect they just do not work for my particular game. I do not really struggle to get the ball in the air usually so do not really need that – I have seen a much tighter dispersion using irons regarded as less ‘friendly’.

 

I recently purchased from ebay the 8,9,W of the ping i200 in the exact same spec I was fit into in the G430, I combo this set with the 5 and 7 from the G430s before the woods. The i200s are more traditional lofts and a smaller head, I have found the smaller head forces me to focus on strike over just picking the yardage and swinging.

I have hit the i200s so much better even though they are supposed to be less forgiving. I find that the distance is predictable and I can also manufacture shorter shots like I used to with the PW/9i. 

 

So overall I would say that these irons are probably not for me. Disappointed but the experiment has given me renewed confidence in my game, I will likely sell on the irons at a loss at some point and purchase the full set of i200s instead.

 

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Welcome to The Sand Trap. Thanks for the review.

Scott

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/11/2024 at 3:36 AM, SholaAmeobi22 said:

-I have not noticed a lack of spin and have been holding greens no problem when the iron is struck well.

Height matters a good bit with holding greens. 

On 6/11/2024 at 3:36 AM, SholaAmeobi22 said:

When I looked up the lofts on these new irons they are all just a club longer as far as I can tell, the pitching wedge has 41 degrees of loft which has led to some considerable gapping issues lower down in my bag. Ping do offer a range of wedges in the G430 to combat this but obviously means considerable additional cost.

That doesn't matter. Dynamic loft (what you present at impact), matters more. The loft on the club matters in that, but so does the golf shaft and your swing. Then CG matters to for launch angle, spin, etc. 

So, you have 9-10 clubs that need to split up a gap of 90-120 yards. So, it doesn't matter what the loft is, as long as club "X" goes distance "Y". Then the next club is about 10-12 yards further than that club.

On 6/11/2024 at 3:36 AM, SholaAmeobi22 said:

I have found the clubs lower than 7 iron (8,9,W) to be extremely 'jumpy'. What I mean by this is depending on the lie/strike I am getting really unpredictable results, sometimes the wedge will go 110 yards sometimes it will go 135 yards (left or right). What I am trying to say is the faces are very hot so if you sometimes get a bit quick or jabby with your swing, it causes real problems. I often think I would rather have just fatted it 50 yards and had another shot from the fairway.

Yep, the downfall of GI irons. They tend to be lower spinning. They tend to launch higher. They also have a "hot" clubface. So, you could catch one that just goes way further. This is why progressive sets are nice. You may want that for a 4-6 iron because the length of the club makes it more difficult to hit the center as often to produce that. From PW to 7 iron you may want it to be more of a better players iron. 

On 6/11/2024 at 3:36 AM, SholaAmeobi22 said:

To be honest I am having some serious doubts about game improvement irons, I suspect they just do not work for my particular game. I do not really struggle to get the ball in the air usually so do not really need that – I have seen a much tighter dispersion using irons regarded as less ‘friendly’.

That is pretty common. Even on robot testing, GI irons are less accurate than player irons.  

Matt Dougherty, P.E.
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What's in My Bag
Driver; :pxg: 0311 Gen 5,  3-Wood: 
:titleist: 917h3 ,  Hybrid:  :titleist: 915 2-Hybrid,  Irons: Sub 70 TAIII Fordged
Wedges: :edel: (52, 56, 60),  Putter: :edel:,  Ball: :snell: MTB,  Shoe: :true_linkswear:,  Rangfinder: :leupold:
Bag: :ping:

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