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Hotrodjrd

Tried Out 2 Drivers

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Now that I've gotten down the "art" of driving, I went to check out 2 drivers at Dicks Sporting Goods and hit on their simulator.  I currently have a Nike SQ-Dymo that I've had for a few years (ok, I'll now allow you to finish laughing)!  I swung the Nike VRS Covert and the TaylorMade Rocketballz.  The shaft on the Nike was a little shorter than the TM, and the head of the TM seemed heavier.  I was significantly more consistent with the Nike in terms of direction and distance.  I was hitting it consistently 230-233 yards and same direction.  With the TM the direction was all over the place and the distance wasn't consistent at all.  However, when I really got ahold of it with the TM, I would hit it 243-248 yards...granted this was like 1 in 5 swings but it's obviously there.

Do you guys think the difference in distance is due to the 1/2 inch or so shaft difference, or is there something to this club that has longer distance?  And would you sacrifice the distance for consistency, or do you think with enough swings and practice that I could maybe get used to the TM and try to build the consistency.  I was sold on the Nike until all of a sudden I hit a few 20 yrds further with the TM.

Lastly, I'm 34 years old, 6'1", 190lbs, ex baseball player...with that being said, is a drive of 230-235 decent or should someone my age/build be hitting it much further???

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Now that I've gotten down the "art" of driving, I went to check out 2 drivers at Dicks Sporting Goods and hit on their simulator.  I currently have a Nike SQ-Dymo that I've had for a few years (ok, I'll now allow you to finish laughing)!  I swung the Nike VRS Covert and the TaylorMade Rocketballz.  The shaft on the Nike was a little shorter than the TM, and the head of the TM seemed heavier.  I was significantly more consistent with the Nike in terms of direction and distance.  I was hitting it consistently 230-233 yards and same direction.  With the TM the direction was all over the place and the distance wasn't consistent at all.  However, when I really got ahold of it with the TM, I would hit it 243-248 yards...granted this was like 1 in 5 swings but it's obviously there.

Do you guys think the difference in distance is due to the 1/2 inch or so shaft difference, or is there something to this club that has longer distance?  And would you sacrifice the distance for consistency, or do you think with enough swings and practice that I could maybe get used to the TM and try to build the consistency.  I was sold on the Nike until all of a sudden I hit a few 20 yrds further with the TM.

Lastly, I'm 34 years old, 6'1", 190lbs, ex baseball player...with that being said, is a drive of 230-235 decent or should someone my age/build be hitting it much further???

Distance isn't necessarily dependent on age.  I know 40 year old men who can drive it 280 and 21 year old men who can only hit it 220.

For an amateur 230-235 is in the average range, I would believe.  However, I am curious as to why you only tried out two drivers.  Were these the only two in your price range?  If that is not the case, why don't you try out the other brands?

I am not advanced enough on club making to offer why one clubs work better than the other... but different clubs work better for different people.  So again I would suggest trying out the different models in your price range and not limiting it to just two.

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I couldn't sleep tonight if I told you to buy a driver that you can't hit straight and to hope that you may learn to hit it straight enough that the extra 20 yards you get from it will put you anywhere but farther into the woods.  Don't buy a club you can't hit well in the demo/fitting.  Just say no.

I am a real believer that, particularly with drivers, the shaft just makes a huge difference!  Tour players are notorious for breaking shafts and spending weeks and months driving their sponsors nuts switching shafts trying to find one that seems to work right in the original head.  I would also strongly agree that you haven't given yourself a very wide overview of the possible options when it comes to drivers.  Try to sample as many as you can. You may also find that within each brand there may be clubs with different shafts (of the same flex) right on the rack at the store.  Try the ones that you think are out of your price range too!  You want to know don't you?  And if it is outside your price range today, but you really really like it, maybe gaming your old club a few months longer would pay off in the long run?

A proper driver fitting should include trying several different shafts.  I believe I sampled 5 as we narrowed down what worked best for me, and there were others the fitter didn't even bother with given my swing characteristics.

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Mainly just tried those two because they are in the same price range, and the biggest deal is because I'm left handed it's hard to find places that have a ton of selection in left handed clubs that are available to swing.  These were two that I've read a lot of good reviews on and the only two that the store had in left handed.  Of course the guy told me that the extra 15-20 yards is pointless if it ends up in the woods, but man it would sure be nice to be able to straighten it out, but maybe with practice, I can pick up yardage with the Nike.

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Pirate Jim has expressed some great points and I don't have much to add, but I will make a few comments. Given the same swing, shaft length will increase distance but will also magnify errors. With a longer shaft, the clubhead travels farther when your arms swing the same, so by simple physics, the clubhead must be going faster. The additional length also magnifies any error, both at impact and down the course. The longer shaft makes it a little harder to have perfect impact, and the additional distance means the ball is further off line down range. Distance is derived from speed, launch, and quality of impact. As mentioned, I have seen big guys that are short and little guys that are long. A lot of long drive guys are bigger though, with strong AND Flexible upper body strength, so I'd think baseball players might have some advantage. Height also gives a longer arc, which can mean greater speed, but you must deliver that speed and power to the ball efficiently. This is where the driver fitting comes in. There is a combination of shaft, head, and length that will help you reach your optimal speed, launch, and spin.
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