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Nyper

Lose distance by going to stiffer shaft?

12 posts in this topic

I know I know... get fitted. I've been fitted a couple different times recently, but never really made a purchase. My clubhead speed with a driver is 106, and I've always been recommended to go with "stiff" in whatever shaft I'm looking at.

My current shaft is a NV 65 Stiff. I'm considering going to an X Stiff in an attempt to hit the ball straighter more consistently. I know it all depends on how you load the shaft, etc... but just in general.. someone with a 105mph clubhead speed... how much distance could I potentially lose by going to a stiffer shaft? I'm currently hitting the ball anywhere from 275-300, depending on whether I hit it straight or turn over a slight draw. My carry is 265 on a straight shot.
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Can't say with any certainty, but I did the same a few years back and did lose some distance. Perhaps gained some accuracy, bad shots were not "as bad". But truthfully, I think you should swing the softest shaft you can control for max distance. Not to mention timing/tempo/etc.. I seemed to overswing the xstiff and that makes me the problem. But still, I had to give that shaft a good rip. Perhaps a mistake in hindsight, but I didn't like feeling that way on every tee box. I now prefer a stiff shaft and a smooth swing. Many variables as you know and fitting is the only answer. One thought, if you have a stock shaft, getting an after market shaft is the way to go. Learn about the different torque of shafts and such. Much more to it than I could tell you. I do know however that an after market shaft in your driver can pay big dividends.

-Dan
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When I was fitted for the current shaft in my driver, my swing speed was around 110-112. I've since made some swing changes with an instructor, and I've lost a bit of clubhead speed in the process of creating a more reliable swing. The X in my driver feels a bit boardier now and I've lost about 10 yards, but I still appreciate the reduced dispersion this particular shaft has offered.

At 105 ss, you are right on the border for a S/XS. If you do upgrade, be sure to go through a proper fitting that will give you optimal launch angle and spin, as this can greatly affect distance without hurting accuracy.
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I own a Taylor Made R9 driver and a few months ago one of the members at the course that I worked at brought in different shafts with the R9 attachment on it and one of them was an extra stiff. With my swing speed around the same as yours, I decided to pop out my shaft and put in the extra stiff one to try it out. To be honest, it just felt too stiff and weird. I did lose some distance, and gained a little accuracy, but I took it out right away because I didn't like the feel of it at all within my swing. I just couldn't get into a good rhythm with my driver because I couldn't feel that flex on my downswing. This may all be different for you though. I would go to your pro, or to a golf shop and see if they have extra stiff shafts that you can try out.
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Many variables as you know and fitting is the only answer.

Agreed.. unfortunately the fitters around here are half worthless. They only want to fit you for new clubs, with the available stock shafts. I walk in with a 7 or 8 year old driver and they immediately try to sell me on something new. My main driver is a Cleveland Launcher 400 I bought around 2003.. it sat in my closet for the past few years. I pulled it out this summer, changed shafts, and was amazed at how well I was hitting it. I've hit new Taylormades, Callaways, etc and can't hit anything else as well.

I just bought a Titleist 909D2 for a very low price. It has a stock regular flex shaft in it, and I'm going to replace it with a NV65... just haven't decided on the flex. I'll probably go with the S and see what happens. I didn't really need the 909.. but for the price, couldn't pass it up! (I got it for $80, in great condition!) I played a 909 D2 with a stock Voodoo shaft for about a month this year. Loved the way the club set up, but the shaft felt dead to me.
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I hit the NV65 S and have @102 swing speed. At 108 you are getting pretty good numbers.
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275-300 yards are some good numbers for a 106mph CHS. What is your launch angle and spin rate? Have you thought about a slightly heavier shaft?
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275-300 yards are some good numbers for a 106mph CHS. What is your launch angle and spin rate? Have you thought about a slightly heavier shaft?

I honestly couldn't tell you the launch angle or spin rate. My swing speed may be slightly faster with this club for all I know. The 106 I was quoting was just an average of several other drivers on a launch monitor a few days ago. I haven't hit my current driver on a monitor in a long time.

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I'm around 105 with my driver, maybe 108-110 when I push it. I went to Xstiff in my Nike driver and didn't lose any distance, gained a few yards.
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I went from stiff to x-stiff in my irons a few years ago. I lost distance at first, but slowly gained it back once I got used to swinging the stiffer shaft. Now I am hitting further than before.

I don't know if that translates to driver shafts, but I would think that any major change like that will take some getting used to. For me, it was a slightly different timing in the swing, once I figured it out, it was easy.

Driver shafts can be tough since they are all over the board from company to company. One XS might gain distance for you, and one might lose distance.
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When you swap out the shaft you also have to be aware of weight, torque and kick point. You might have the right flex, but the other variables need to as well.
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Agreed.. unfortunately the fitters around here are half worthless. They only want to fit you for new clubs, with the available stock shafts.

That is because you won't likely get a true professional fitting at a golf shop. Check out the places below. It will be worth your trouble to do so. Jerry Ballard J. Ballard Enterprises, Inc. 1118 Asheford Green Ave. Concord, NC 28027 704-788-8954 jb@ClubmakersChoice.Com www.ClubmakersChoice.Com Serving Clubmakers Worldwide PCS Member Wishon Golf Gold Member James Breece PRO CLUBFITTER Fuquay Varina NC Phone: 919-557-5862 Fax: 919-557-5862 pro-clubfitter@embarqmail.com Randy Vaughn - AGCP Level 10 Qualified & Certified The Club Shoppe Murphy, NC 28906 828-837-0505 frecgolf@gmail.com AGCP PCS Professional Clubmaker USGTF Level 1 Teacher Certified Rifle Center MOI Certified Wishon Gold UST Tour Shop James Breece gets my vote if you can make the trip. I got fitted last year by someone in Pinehurst, but will see James at a later date. He was out of state when I needed the fitting. I work out of state and get home every few months. From.... http://www.agcpgolf.com/ -Dan
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