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MarshallRaynor

I'm A Beginner/Intermediate Player Who Needs Some Help With Club Selection. Help, Please?

19 posts in this topic

I am in the market for new clubs (well, new-ish) and I have found several full sets of great clubs for <$700.

* Callaway RAZR X Blacks

* Taylormade RBZ 2.0

* Taylormade RBZ 1.0

* Nike Covert 1.0

My scores hover around between 90 and 100, and I play once or twice a week, so I'm not going to get better exponentially. I also understand that once I get these clubs I will need to take them somewhere to get them fitted in order to get a good performance out of them. But right now I'm playing a ~$200 Powerbilt set, so anything is a step up.

Here is what I know:

*I have the RAZR X Black 9.5 driver right now. Other than needing the 10.5, I absolutely love it. The pro at my local course says he has never played the RAZR Blacks, but he is a sold Callaway player, and says that from what he knows about them second-hand, they are very sweet and forgiving, and they look beautiful.

*I know a couple people who play Taylormade drivers, and love them. I never have. I know that Taylormade has a great reputation for making clubs that are easy for beginner and intermediate players to build their game with, so I don't think I could go wrong with Taylormade.

*Nike has a lot of great players in their roster, but I have never swung one of their clubs. I'm not a big fan of adjustable drivers - I'm not good enough to utilize a fixed driver to it's fullest potential - but Nike's irons have a great reputation.

Here are my hangups:

*My local course doesn't have a very big budget, so they keep a dozen putters and a full set of the newest, biggest market clubs from Callaway and Taylormade marked up about 120% and a few beginner sets. The staff are great with technique advice, but they know what they play and aren't very experienced with what they don't.

*I live outside of Roosevelt, Utah. Quite literally, THE closest place for me to demo clubs is about 150 miles away. That's a long way for me to swing clubs I can't afford with little-to-no return on my effort, so my plan is to grab one of these three great sets of improvement clubs and then go get them fitted for me.

Aside from just "Go get fitted", which I am not in a position to do right off the bat, what do you guys think?

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I would go with either of the TaylorMade irons. I know a few players that really like them.

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Speaking of razr x, how's the 2012 razr x in your opinion? Good for a beginner? Am looking for an iron set.. But i want something that's a few seasons old.
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MVMAC -

Cool. I appreciate the help.

What is it that they like so much about them? I really don't have any experience with Taylormade other than their fantastic reputation.

I spent some time last night visiting YouTube and other forums and kinda started leaning towards the Nike set, with the Callaways in a close second due to my experience with that driver. Both of those iron sets are supposedly really forgiving, which is pretty essential for me, and the Nike driver held neck-to-neck with the RBZ and RBZ 2.0 for distance. I'm not really an enormous fan of adjustable, but I figure if I get it and start improving quickly then the driver can adjust with me.

Bakry-

For me, I don't know anything about them. As I said, the Blacks are one of the iron sets I am super interested in.

I love my RAZR X Black driver. That's what's pulling me towards the rest of the set so hard. According to the pro at my course, they are really soft and forgiving on off-center hits, and once you get in the groove with them they make shaping fairly simple for a cavity-back. I am nowhere near good enough for that to be a concern for me, but YMMV.

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This may be good or bad advice but this is my opinion on clubs.  Just get the set that feels and looks good to you.  If your handicap is correct, you have more to worry about than what clubs you are playing.  I dont mean to sound like a di*k, but I am an 8 handicap and I dont even worry about the clubs I am playing.  I bought my set for $400 off ebay.  Thats putter-driver.  I havent really even thought about getting fitted yet.  My goal is to get down below a 5 than reward myself with getting a proper fitting.  Maybe I am going about it all wrong, but I have friends that spend about $1200 on new clubs every year and they dont get any better while I have been dropping about 4 shots every year by practicing and taking evolvr lessons. The funny thing is my same buddies that spend all that money on new clubs every year tell me lessons are to expensive.  Most of them would benefit from one 30 min lesson just to fix their set-up.   I honestly think that you would be better off spending money that you plan on spending on clubs and put it towards lessons.

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... The funny thing is my same buddies that spend all that money on new clubs every year tell me lessons are to expensive.  Most of them would benefit from one 30 min lesson just to fix their set-up.   I honestly think that you would be better off spending money that you plan on spending on clubs and put it towards lessons.

My pro urges players to buy clubs for the swing they have. So, take buckshot's lead and get some lessons first. If you can get rid of any basic swing glitches, you'll have a better idea of what clubs you need.

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MVMAC -

Cool. I appreciate the help.

What is it that they like so much about them? I really don't have any experience with Taylormade other than their fantastic reputation.

I spent some time last night visiting YouTube and other forums and kinda started leaning towards the Nike set, with the Callaways in a close second due to my experience with that driver. Both of those iron sets are supposedly really forgiving, which is pretty essential for me, and the Nike driver held neck-to-neck with the RBZ and RBZ 2.0 for distance. I'm not really an enormous fan of adjustable, but I figure if I get it and start improving quickly then the driver can adjust with me.

I love my RAZR X Black driver. That's what's pulling me towards the rest of the set so hard. According to the pro at my course, they are really soft and forgiving on off-center hits, and once you get in the groove with them they make shaping fairly simple for a cavity-back. I am nowhere near good enough for that to be a concern for me, but YMMV.

Yeah I think the players I know went with TaylorMade because the brand is well known and it worked out for them. All three iron models you mentioned are pretty similar, they're all forgiving distance irons. I don't think you can make a "bad" decision here. Personally I think the RBZ irons are more pleasing to the eye at address than the other two irons.

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Buckshot, Tiger:

Yours is great advice, and actually where I did start, but the problem is I'm 6'4". Standard length/lie clubs are actually detrimental to my swing because they re-enforce bad habits due to such extreme out-of-fit clubs. Otherwise I would absolutely be right there with you. I've taken a some lessons with three pros at my course over the past two seasons, and their diagnoses was that standard clubs don't fit. In fact, one of them sprung for me to put an extended shaft on my driver out of his own pocket because he was afraid of what the shorter length was doing for my swing form. Also, I don't plan to go get new clubs every year or anything like that. The reason I'm looking at the club sets I am is because they're all quality clubs from reputable manufacturers that I can use for several seasons. When I get these clubs I want them to last until I can justify dropping the bones for "new, professional" clubs. Thank you. I really do appreciate the information and I'm not trying to argue with you every step of the way.

MVMAC:

Thanks for the info. Would you say, in your opinion, that if I were to go with one of these sets and then go get them fitted to me, it would just be a "whichever I like the look of" situation? What are your thoughts on the adjustable driver? I know I need a 10.5* to work with my swing right now, but as I get better it would give me the option of changing the face to match my development. Would I be better off getting a bonded driver and then just buying another one as my form progresses?

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MVMAC:

Thanks for the info. Would you say, in your opinion, that if I were to go with one of these sets and then go get them fitted to me, it would just be a "whichever I like the look of" situation? What are your thoughts on the adjustable driver? I know I need a 10.5* to work with my swing right now, but as I get better it would give me the option of changing the face to match my development. Would I be better off getting a bonded driver and then just buying another one as my form progresses?

That's really up to you. I can't say for sure because I have no idea how your progression will effect/change what you need.

I like adjustable drivers for the most part, ability to tune it is good if you need to but if you find a driver that works, adjustable or not, go with that.

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I played callys for awhile. Had bought 3 sets of them. I am now playing Adams super s iro s with the kbs shafts in them. Don't be afraid to think out of the box. You can also pick up some +1 inch clubs on occasion on eBay. But really if you have the option I would have o e of the pros fit you then order them. With that said if the standard clubs are really hindering your swing. Remember golf pros that work at courses that sell clubs will sell you clubs even if you don't need them. It's almost like car sales.
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,... but the problem is I'm 6'4". Standard length/lie clubs are actually detrimental to my swing because they re-enforce bad habits due to such extreme out-of-fit clubs. Otherwise I would absolutely be right there with you. I've taken a some lessons with three pros at my course over the past two seasons, and their diagnoses was that standard clubs don't fit....  When I get these clubs I want them to last until I can justify dropping the bones for "new, professional" clubs. ...

The 6-foot-4 is critical information. If you can, make the 150-mile trek to the fitter. You might drive up the day before so you aren't tired.

Your problem with standard length/lie club isn't just in your swing. The wrong-size clubs can injure your back.

One very tall golfer who developed such problems was Cary Mittlecoff, a dentist from Memphis. He played on the PGA Tour as as regular from 1947 to 1962. He scored 40 wins, including 2 US Opens and a Master's. But, he had to retire in his early 40s because of back problems, which were not helped by the fact he was a tall man playing with average-size clubs.

So, protect your swing and your back. Drive the 150 miles and get what you need.

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Get fitted before you buy.  Especially if you are tall, since you aren't going to be able to lengthen the shafts later without replacing them. If it's too expensive or inconvenient to do a proper fitting right now, at least use one of those online tools which fits you based on measurments.  The disadvantage here is if you prefer to be especially upright or bent in your stance, you may want additional adjustment to lie, and a good in person professional fitting may also be able to better fine tune shaft and grip selection.  But 95% of the time the e-fit will get size, flex, and grip size correct, and if lie does need any additional adjustment that is at least something that can be done later with the advice of a good teacher.

Even if you don't want to buy "knockoff" clubs, the fitting tools at Hirekogolf or Gigagolf will at least give you an idea about what you might need as far as fit.  And I personally am a fan of Gigagolf, got most of my clubs there and am very happy so far.  I would say the GX944 and TRX v.11 models seem to be intended to resemble the Callaway RAZR X and Taylormade Burner 2.0 models you are looking at.

http://www.hirekogolf.com/media/modules/get_fit.swf\

http://www.gigagolf.com/club_detailsHTML.jhtml?manufacturer=GigaGolf&groupnum;=MI-GGCW26-SET

http://www.gigagolf.com/club_detailsHTML.jhtml?manufacturer=GigaGolf&groupnum;=MI-GGTM18-SET

These are good quality clubs. The designs aren't quite the same as the brand names they mimic, but the performance is still very similar, and there are no durability issues at all.  They're maybe not as good as the much more expensive name brands, but I guarantee you will do better with well fitted "knockoffs" than poorly fitted brand name clubs.

And if you are going to order brand name clubs, you should be able to order them in the fitting you want for no additional charge.  Don't just buy standard clubs off the shelf, try to at least get the length, flex, and grip size right (and lie if you know that needs adjustment).

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Actually meant to include this one, this is the one most similar to the RBZ:

http://www.gigagolf.com/club_detailsHTML.jhtml?manufacturer=GigaGolf&groupnum;=MI-GGTM19-SET

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Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it.

I actually have quite a bit of experience with GigaGolf. My oldest brother owns a full set. He's had them for about six years now and is really happy with them. I've played them a couple of times - we're the same height and within 15 pounds of each other - and they feel good, but honestly not a lot better than the Powerbilts I have now. He gets great results out of them, so to each his own, I guess.

I'm actually pretty sure I know what lenght and lie adjustment I need because I have been to their site dozens of times. I've "custom built" sets on their websites a lot, but I just can't get comfortable with buying from them from my experience with their clubs. Six or seven years is a big difference in technology, though. They could be a ton better now.

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Really, I guess my biggest hangup on the entire situation - whether or not to go get fitted - is if you can extend a graphite shaft or if you just have to totally replace the shaft. I think that if a person could just lengthen it then I would know what needed to be done. If I'm just going to have to replace the whole shaft to get another inch of length, then I might as well go the distance.

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Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it.

I actually have quite a bit of experience with GigaGolf. My oldest brother owns a full set. He's had them for about six years now and is really happy with them. I've played them a couple of times - we're the same height and within 15 pounds of each other - and they feel good, but honestly not a lot better than the Powerbilts I have now. He gets great results out of them, so to each his own, I guess.

I'm actually pretty sure I know what lenght and lie adjustment I need because I have been to their site dozens of times. I've "custom built" sets on their websites a lot, but I just can't get comfortable with buying from them from my experience with their clubs. Six or seven years is a big difference in technology, though. They could be a ton better now.

Yeah, Giga is good for what they are, and especially with irons I think there is very little difference in performance, but overall I see it as something like 90%+ of performance for less than half the price.  Nothing wrong at all though with wanting something better, just mentioned Giga in case price was an issue, and to point out you can order clubs the proper size even in cheap clubs, so you ought to be able to do the same if you are buying a brand name.

Have you considered ordering from someplace like TGW then?

http://www.tgw.com/

If you know your size and lie, you can customize any of those brand name clubs, choose the shaft you want, length you want, grips you want, etc.  I guess the question is whether you are really saving much money by buying those boxed sets on ebay, rather than going this route.

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