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Bullitt5339

I am officially done with the "lighter is faster/longer" thought process........

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that's currently being pushed by a lot of the manufacturers.

I was gaming a Cleveland Launcher FL Ultralight 3 Wood until today.  When I caught it, I could get great distance out of it, but I was very inconsistent with the C'Kua 43g shaft that was in it.

I went and was fitted today for a new fairway wood, looking to replace the 17* Cleveland HL.  I sat and hit a few different fairway woods that were around the same loft and nothing really impressed me enough to replace it.  The salesman suggested that I try the RBZ and initially I didn't like it any more than the Cleveland and the numbers weren't much better.  Then he grabbed me an 18* RBZ Tour head that had a stock XCON-7 Stiff in it.  I immediately noticed how much heavier it was and that the head was a bit smaller, and took it into the launch monitor.

I immediately started hitting better shots than I'd seen with the lighter Cleveland and RBZ standard woods.  I typically hit Regular flex (92ish mph swing speed) in my fairway woods, but after watching me hit a few shots, it seems that I have a pretty fast tempo and the stiff shaft seemed to help me out.  After trying a host of different shaft combinations, too many to remember in fact, the 76 gram XCON-7 actually gave me the best numbers, which was nice because it saved me about $100 over a custom shaft.

This is the first club that I've ever been fitted for where a stock shaft offering actually performed best for my particular crappy swing.  So as of now, I'm off of the lightweight shaft kick and I'm going to stick with a heavier shaft in my fairway woods.

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Tests by Second Swing on RBZ FWs and hybrids confirm what you talk about:

http://thesandtrap.com/a/rocketballz-shaft-flex-a-case-study

I got warnings on "too light" shafts at the 2011 St. Louis Golf Expo. A couple of the OEMs were holding back on pushing sub-50 gram shafts because of concerns over loss of control. As one rep said, the lighter weight meant the shaft was thinner somewhere.

Hireko offers some observations on golfers overswinging - trying to kill the ball - with too-light shafts.

http://blog.hirekogolf.com/2010/05/take-a-look-heavier-graphite-shafts/

This past summer I got a combo of lessons and a continuing golf fitting. Forgetting the expo "too light" warning, I got fitted for standard RBZ FWs and a 4H, and initially they worked fine. Then, my pro got me to accentuate my hip turn, and the RBZ with lighter 45 gr. fairway wood shafts (and a draw bias) turned into hook machines. My PX 5.0 irons and my Callaway RazrFit driver started working fine with extra hip turn, but the RBZ suddenly were leftward bound.

I've gotten some control back on the RBZ by switching from standard to slightly thicker midsize grips, but we'll have to see how it works out this spring.

As Bullitt suggested, try out heavier shafts and/or RBZ Tour models if you have decent clubhead speed. Consider that the Tour model would have a square face, and standard RBZ models with heavier custom shafts from Matrix (starting at 57 gr. in R flex).

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I had the exact same problem with my driver/fairway setup with the ultralight shafts.  I turned into a hook machine, which made me hold off a bit because I was fearing the hook, which then led to all sorts of horrible problems.  Blocking, slicing, chunking, etc.  But my PX 5.0 iron shafts work perfectly for an aggressive swing.

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Originally Posted by WUTiger

Tests by Second Swing on RBZ FWs and hybrids confirm what you talk about:

http://thesandtrap.com/a/rocketballz-shaft-flex-a-case-study

I got warnings on "too light" shafts at the 2011 St. Louis Golf Expo. A couple of the OEMs were holding back on pushing sub-50 gram shafts because of concerns over loss of control. As one rep said, the lighter weight meant the shaft was thinner somewhere.

Hireko offers some observations on golfers overswinging - trying to kill the ball - with too-light shafts.

http://blog.hirekogolf.com/2010/05/take-a-look-heavier-graphite-shafts/

This past summer I got a combo of lessons and a continuing golf fitting. Forgetting the expo "too light" warning, I got fitted for standard RBZ FWs and a 4H, and initially they worked fine. Then, my pro got me to accentuate my hip turn, and the RBZ with lighter 45 gr. fairway wood shafts (and a draw bias) turned into hook machines. My PX 5.0 irons and my Callaway RazrFit driver started working fine with extra hip turn, but the RBZ suddenly were leftward bound.

I've gotten some control back on the RBZ by switching from standard to slightly thicker midsize grips, but we'll have to see how it works out this spring.

As Bullitt suggested, try out heavier shafts and/or RBZ Tour models if you have decent clubhead speed. Consider that the Tour model would have a square face, and standard RBZ models can be fitted with heavier custom shafts from Matrix (starting at 57 gr. in R flex).

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Hitting the middle of the clubface, on plane, with a well-timed release is longer.  Whatever shaft gets you there is the "longest" shaft for you. I've never been able to hit the ball consistently with an ultralight driver or fairway wood; at one point I had a (very heavy) 43" steel shaft in my driver, which was straight but not very long.  I eventually discovered that a mid-weight, low torque, extra-stiff shaft works for me (I have a pretty fast transition).  But, again, it's going to vary from golfer to golfer.

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