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ltjbukkem

Old wooden drivers, some info from club fitters

10 posts in this topic

I haven't used persimon woods for years since I was a junior, and basicly have discounted them as a thing of the past. I have purchased a mint set of Mizuno Jonny Millar Professional blades, and they included the matching Driver, 3 wood, and 4 wood, they are J-Spec and have never been used (lucky). I was having a practice session today and poped them in the bag for a bit of a reminisce on old times, and I was amazed at how straight and true the ball flight was, without blowing my own trumpet I am a flusher and hit the ball out of the screws, but it seemed to me that a bad swing made with a modern graphite large headed driver, magnifies the error, and the wooden club stays on the same line without curving too much, and the ball flight is beautifull I could hit them for hours!!

Is it because of the wooden material, the size of the head or the steel shaft, or the combination.

Is there any drivers on the market that are more compact?

Thanks golfers!!

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Originally Posted by ltjbukkem

Is there any drivers on the market that are more compact?


Several manufacturers offer smaller head designs. KZG and Miura immediately come to mind.

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good for you!  i'm bagging a laminated maple Orlimar from the '90s and have hit it farther than anything else i've tried.  it is actually a larger than normal wooden head and has a different shape (think Jesse Ortiz style).  10* and square face angle with their stock graphite stiff shaft that i've cut to 44".  love it!.

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What you're talking about on the persimmons seeming straight may relate to the bulge and roll curvature in the face. It seems the persimmon drivers had more bulge and roll than the metal woods. B & R contributed to the "gearing effect" - balls hit toward the heel or the toe got spun back toward the center. (You needed a fairly steady swing to benefit from gear effect)

Seems like modern 460 cm. jumbo metal drivers have flatter faces, and rely more on MOI to keep things straight.

Can any clubsmiths comment on this?

Persimmon Drivers. From 1976 to about 1983 I played with a persimmon driver with a deep reddish stain to the head. It came from a custom club shop in southern California, and had a very deep face to it for the era. The deep face gave me a margin of error on tee shots on less-well-maintained public course tee boxes. And on the back nine, I could jump on it for extra distance on longer holes. The metal jumbos: have to swing smooth every time - jumping just puts the ball into the treeline.

I foolishly traded that driver in so I could have woods which matched my iron set. The replacement persimmon driver was OK, but never as hot as Big Red .

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Yeh, some good info. It would be interesting to make irons with a bulge for average/new Golfers to make the game easier for them to play, if the R and A allows?.

Who was the last top player to stop using Persimon woods? Anyone still on tour using them?

After using them recently, and as a good player who has neglected Persimon for some time I can't help but think we have all been sucked into the  "technology" marketing by club companies.

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I just bought taylormade burner 420 cc driver off ebay recently for $25 with stock 44.5" 60 g regular flex shaft which i guess was the last driver they made before the 07 burner so i guess its probably about a 05 model i guess.   I like how it feels, I've only hit it on the range so far, going to go play 9 today with it to really try it out.   I was hitting most of my shots pretty accurately at the range and basically about the same distance as any of the newer 460 cc drivers ive ever had or tried.  I was even consistently hitting a slight draw with it and it wasnt one of the draw biased ones, i usually slice any other driver ive ever had, its a very light driver so maybe that helps.  Granted its not an old vintage persimmon driver but its not the same as all the current drivers out there and proves that sometimes bigger isnt always better.  A friend of mine recently bought a 2010 superfast driver used off ebay.  I hit it once and probably sliced it about 50-60 yards and he doesnt hit it very well either, shaft is way too long and its actually a bit on the heavy side.  I handed it back to him and never asked to try it again.

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Check out Louisville Golf and Joe Powell Golf.  Both still make persimmon woods.  I am bagging Joe Powells right now.  Louisville makes some classic models, but also has "high tech" persimmon clubs using modern enhancements.  Louisville's website also has some interesting articles.

Davis Love III was one of the last holdouts on persimmon drivers; there was another pro who used one a bit longer, but the name eludes me right now.

I think it is the bulge and roll on the face of the wooden clubs that enhances the gear effect and brings the ball back to center. With the shaft, I don't think it is the graphite per se, but rather that the graphite shafts are longer and magnify any error.

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Originally Posted by ltjbukkem

I haven't used persimon woods for years since I was a junior, and basicly have discounted them as a thing of the past. I have purchased a mint set of Mizuno Jonny Millar Professional blades, and they included the matching Driver, 3 wood, and 4 wood, they are J-Spec and have never been used (lucky). I was having a practice session today and poped them in the bag for a bit of a reminisce on old times, and I was amazed at how straight and true the ball flight was, without blowing my own trumpet I am a flusher and hit the ball out of the screws, but it seemed to me that a bad swing made with a modern graphite large headed driver, magnifies the error, and the wooden club stays on the same line without curving too much, and the ball flight is beautifull I could hit them for hours!!

Is it because of the wooden material, the size of the head or the steel shaft, or the combination.

Is there any drivers on the market that are more compact?

Thanks golfers!!



Hmmm . . . an April 1st thread? If any player who can put a good stroke on a modern ball with a steel shafted persimmon headed driver and hit it "out of the screws" can't hit a modern driver, then clearly they have the wrong driver. I can hit a persimmon driver okay, but the ball curves more because the ball stays on the face slightly longer due to a much lower COR. A drive that hooks or slices with a modern driver would be a snap hook or banana slice with persimmon. It's true.

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I never said I can't hit a "modern" driver, I said I seem to hit persimon truer! Not an April fools, we don't have that in New Zealand in a big way. Yes I hit it out of the screws, we call it flushing the ball down here.

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I have Wilson Staff Tour blades and persimmon woods. When I think I have this game figured out, I just drag these out. A humbling experience, as any swing faults you have are brought out for all to see...

My favorite though is a Powerbuilt persimmon with a Rifle 6.5 steel shaft in it. I hit it about 15 yds shorter than my modern Titleist or Ping drivers. But I do love the sound and feel!

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