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Desert

Which clubs to upgrade/add first?

16 posts in this topic

Hey all. I'm a high handicapper who typically shoots 100 +/- 5. My major problems are driving (push/slice) and putting (f#cking 3 putts!!!). i feel confident chipping and pitching. I also feel confident with my 6i on up. 5i is hit or miss, and my 4i is more miss. Lessons begin in June. I bought myself some Ping g20s 4-PW (45 degree), SW (54degree) whichI LOVE! The rest of my bag is a hodge-podge of hand-me-down clubs: Ping G5 driver with stiff shaft, Tour Edge 3W (no idea the model but it is 15+ years old) with stiff shaft, King Cobra Speed LD 5w with lite/senior shaft, a Cobra Baffler Rail H 25degree (5H) hybrid with a lite/senior shaft, and a Tour Edge Bazooka 60 deg lob wedge. I love the lob wedge, the 5H and 5W are ok but I hate the 3W and driver. I know I need regular shafts, so my driver and 3W are too stiff and my 5W and 5H are to whippy. I'd like to upgrade the driver, 3W, and 5W, and add a 50 degree wedge, a 4H and a 3H.I will be doing this over time, one club at a time. Where do I begin? For a high-handicapper like me, does it make the most sense to buy the 4H or 3H first? I'd get a lot of use out of them. On the other hand, maybe I should buy a new 3W so at least I could have some minimal confidence off the tee? Any thoughts or advice is much appreciated.
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I would buy a really good fairway wood and a hybrid. Would suggest a 4w. Leave your driver at home till you and the 4w are best friends. Invest in lessons. Buy a driver later once you have mastered the 4w. What will happen is you will then have a club you have 100% faith in to hit a fairway with.
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go get fit for a driver by a professional it will make the most improvement. Donate the 3wood and put the 3hybrid in next then the wedges.

Most high handicap players should play a 4wood not a 3.

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I'd say to get a hybrid and a driver first. That way, you'll be set off the tee, and from about 200 yards. Then I'd get a 3w, 50*, then another hybrid. Also, don't neglect lessons and practicing. Those save more strokes than anything else.

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Thanks guys. So the best choice seems to be 4W. Learn to hit it off the tee before moving to driver. Then, a 3H or 4H. After getting comfortable with that set up, get fitted for a driver. I likely can make due with my PW, SW, LW set up for awhile. Sounds like a plan.
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First thing Id do is lose the driver and 3-wood and replace them with a driver and 3-wood with a regular flex shaft.  At your level, you have no business playing a stiff shaft.  Honestly, most golfers shouldnt be playing a stiff.  Playing a regular flex will allow you to much better load the shaft and give you time to release it properly.  Likely, your push-slice with the driver is a result of that shaft.

Beyond that, what you need is lessons and practice, practice, practice.  The best clubs in the world are worthless if you arent swinging the club properly.

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Originally Posted by Desert

.... Lessons begin in June.

Any reason the lessons can't begin now?

Before making a large investment in clubs, I'd suggest getting your swing whipped into some sort of shape first.  Do any stores around the Phoenix area sell used clubs?  Perhaps you could find a decent "few year old" driver with an R-flex shaft.  A lot of people trade drivers darn near yearly, and you may be able to find a nice starter club pretty cheap.  Same deal for the 4W and either 3 or 4 hybrid.  Once the lessons start your swing will likely change considerably, as may your ideas about what you want/need in a club, particularly if you are fairly young and strong and the lessons get you swinging the club a good bit faster.  If you're married, trading up from that used club will go over smoother next year...

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OK all. I'm definitely in paralysis by analysis. Since I started this thread I've been to the range a few times, and I'm starting to figure a driver out a bit. Still many more shots are push-slices than straight, but enough are straight that I'm getting excited. Problem is that I need to give the driver back to my buddy so I decided on buying a used driver, rather than 4W. I've read everything I could on drivers from 2010-2012, looking for "forgiving" drivers, and there are many. I've also seen threads here that suggests getting fitted for the correct shaft. And now I'm overwhelmed by information, trying to figure out the perfect driver for me which i know can't be done by reading articles. So I'm trying to simplify. With a swing speed of 90, and the understanding that I'm learning the game, am I correct to think that any regular flex driver in the "forgiving" category will work as well as another for me to lesrn the game? Some time down the road when I start to consistently hit the driver without the slice, I'll go for a fitting. Until then, does it make sense to look for adjustable drivers so that I have a bit of a bandaid on my swing now, but can adjust to fit my swing as it changes with lessons/practice? Is adjustability just marketing, or is it really a nice feature?
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Driver, putter and wedges are your most important clubs for fit.

Fairway woods are long shafted and hit off the deck, as well as the long hybrids ... that's tough for a newbie. If you place the ball in the fairway off the tee, you can get on the green one shot over regulation with mid and short irons.

I'd get fit for a driver with max forgiveness.

Adjustability is a good idea for an improving beginner.

I'd research an excellent instructor soon - good place to start is here if you do video and sign on evolver.

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I'd get fit for a driver with max forgiveness. Adjustability is a good idea for an improving beginner.

I was just up at Dicks and they have smokin' deals on Cobra AMP ($169) and AMP Offset ($140). Logic says to go with the AMP since it can be adjusted from closed to neutral if my swing changes. However, reviews state that the AMP is for a mid handicapper, whereas the Offset is for a high handicapper. Is my "logic" wrong?

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Cobra is generally forgiving.  S2 or s3 are pretty cheap on ebay and their regular flex suits that sort of swingspeed.

Same with Cleveland Classic.  The 290 can be had for a song on ebay as well.

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The amp is a sweet driver.  I'd steer away from the offset model.  That sort of correction will hurt your game long term.

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Originally Posted by solarbear

The amp is a sweet driver.  I'd steer away from the offset model.  That sort of correction will hurt your game long term.

Agree as to avoiding the offset driver. It might help in the short run, but you'll be selling it and getting nothing for it in a year ... and I mean nothing. So the AMP would be the better long term choice. Watch for loft ... most people tend to go too low. At a 90 ss, you should probably be looking at 11-12 loft. And have the loft measured. Some OEMs stamp 10.5 when the actual loft is 12.5. Get it checked.

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Guys, can't thank you enough for your advice. One last (yeah right) question. A used Cobra S3 in very good condition can be had for $85-90. Any reason to spend double on a new AMP other than looks? Functionally, they seem basically the same...is this true? Aesthetically I like the orange AMP slightly better than the black S3. Are the
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Originally Posted by Desert

Guys, can't thank you enough for your advice. One last (yeah right) question. A used Cobra S3 in very good condition can be had for $85-90. Any reason to spend double on a new AMP other than looks? Functionally, they seem basically the same...is this true? Aesthetically I like the orange AMP slightly better than the black S3. Are the

That would be debatable whether there is a significant advantage of say the AMP over the S3.  Each year they use different shafts, so one might play better than the other for you, but which one is hard to say exactly.  I have always liked Cobra drivers, they have a nice weight and feel solid.  They tend to play a little more loft than it says on the head which is not bad for most people.

And adams speedline 12 or 11 would be another option worth considering that can be had cheap.

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A little update. Took advantage of a Golfsmith sale today and talked them into trading out a stiff shaft on a barely used AMP for the regular shaft on the last "new" AMP driver in the store. Ended up with a 10.5 degree stiff shafted new AMP for $139 out the door. Not too shabby.
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