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Early 80s iron lofts?


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I have a set of ram accubar irons I think they were made between years 80 and 82.

Would these generally be shorter shafted and more lofted than a set of more modern clubs?

Like If the same guy , same swing etc used an older 80s 5i then a newer 5i would you generally expect him to hit the new one further? 

 

Thanks

Sam

 

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Lofts have gotten stronger over the years.  What was once a pitching wedge is now a gap wedge.  The lofts and lengths haven't changed so much as the number, or letter, on the sole of the club.  Everybody still plays with the same range of clubs that golfers always have.  The biggest difference is the ball.  My average distances are about the same as they were 30 years ago; and it isn't because I've got stronger and more athletic as the years have gone by.

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Yes. Jacked up lofts led directly to the invention of the gap wedge since the SW couldn't follow the decreasing loft of the PW since it would no longer function to get the ball up out of deep bunkers. I think it's also responsible for the rise of hybrids. A guy who hadn't bought new clubs in a while, suddently found that his new 4 iron had evolved into a 2-3/4 or 2-1/2 iron! And he couldn't hit it. Couldn't get it higher in the air than the gutters on a ranch house. Here come the hybrids that are easier to get up. I don't carry an iron longer than a 6 any more. 

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The truth is modern clubs have evolved beyond just renumbering the club by making a 5 a 6 and so on.  They have better sweet and bigger sweet spots, can help get the trajectory you want (low launch or high launch) are more forgiving, have better shafts etc.  So, unless you buy a bad new set, if you played the same loft in your irons, irrespective of the number stamped on it, you are more likely to get better distance from a modern club.

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7 hours ago, Buckeyebowman said:

Yes. Jacked up lofts led directly to the invention of the gap wedge since the SW couldn't follow the decreasing loft of the PW since it would no longer function to get the ball up out of deep bunkers. I think it's also responsible for the rise of hybrids. A guy who hadn't bought new clubs in a while, suddently found that his new 4 iron had evolved into a 2-3/4 or 2-1/2 iron! And he couldn't hit it. Couldn't get it higher in the air than the gutters on a ranch house. Here come the hybrids that are easier to get up. I don't carry an iron longer than a 6 any more. 

Got you, guess it helps them sell more clubs.

 

I'm not in any rush to upgrade, I've been knocking it about with an old set of blades too. I figure if I can dial my ball striking in on less forgiving clubs , that's only gonna help me in the long run.

 

I'm striking all my irons pretty well really. Persimmon woods, not so much yet

 

 

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10 hours ago, pganapathy said:

So, unless you buy a bad new set, if you played the same loft in your irons, irrespective of the number stamped on it, you are more likely to get better distance from a modern club.

Generally agree, except that the shaft flex and weight also makes a huge difference. I am old with a slow swing speed and need forgiving clubs. I hit my higher-lofted older senior flex lighter shaft Cleveland clubs as well or better than the lower-lofted newer regular flex Mizuno clubs, both in graphite. Good topic. Best, -Marv

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4 hours ago, MarvChamp said:

Generally agree, except that the shaft flex and weight also makes a huge difference. I am old with a slow swing speed and need forgiving clubs. I hit my higher-lofted older senior flex lighter shaft Cleveland clubs as well or better than the lower-lofted newer regular flex Mizuno clubs, both in graphite. Good topic. Best, -Marv

But that is an unfair comparison.  You are comparing different shaft flex.  A modern set in senior flex light shaft will probably give you slightly better distance and/or accuracy than the old set you have.  It may not be a huge amount, but it will generally be better.  I have an old Dunlop set of irons purchased in 1986, and my Taylor Made RAC irons hit it slightly longer when the loft is the same.

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18 hours ago, pganapathy said:

But that is an unfair comparison.  You are comparing different shaft flex.

Point and match! Thanks, -Marv

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Many valid points.

Traditional lofts tended to be 24, 27, 30, 34, 38, 42, 46. That is 4 iron to PW. That is still what you generally find in players clubs today. The quest for more distance is driven by marketing to sell more clubs, and the major manufacturers know, "distance sells. Therefore, many GI clubs will be jacked 2 and even 4 degrees stronger than traditional.

More important to me, is not only how far a club goes [consistently], but how many rpm it will achieve, and the angle of decent, which will give an indication of how well it will hold a green. For me, certainly not for all, my 7 iron is 168 to 170, has 6500 rpm, and a decent angle of 47 degrees. Of course, that factors nice conditions [70+ degrees temp] with little wind. My 7 iron is 34 degrees.

And of course, the shaft will have a lot to do with the flight of the ball. Best to have a fitter assist in that decision.

A 7 iron that goes 190 yards with 5000 rpm is going to cause a problem. It indicates I'll have severe gaps in the upper end of the bag.

I don't care how far someone else hits their 7 iron. I just need to know how far mine goes.

Bragging rights come from the total at the end of the round, not from how far your pitching wedge goes.

Additionally, if you hit off of mats, they will alter your lie and loft over a relatively short time, especially if you are playing forged clubs. Have them checked at least once a year.

Sorry for the long post

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7 minutes ago, LMoore said:

Traditional lofts tended to be 24, 27, 30, 34, 38, 42, 46. That is 4 iron to PW.

Those are really more of the modern blade lofts. Vintage clubs are different. I have a set of Ben Hogans Apex 2s from 1983 and they're 23.5, 30, 33.5, 37, 41, 45, 50 from 4-PW.

My Mizuno MP4 is both longer and more forgiving even when comparing similar lofts.

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Billchao, I agree 100%. I was giving what we see today. It's funny to see old youtube video's with Shell Wide World of Golf and see Nicklaus hitting a 5 iron from 170 yards, when he would probably hit a 7 or 8 if it had been today's lofts..

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Ok stupid question but just wondering if anyone has and with modern clubs if you’d still see a distance gain but has anyone bent modern players or better clubs to traditional lofts?  Has the overall club length increased as well as the lofts?

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On 3/26/2019 at 10:26 PM, pganapathy said:

The truth is modern clubs have evolved beyond just renumbering the club by making a 5 a 6 and so on.  They have better sweet and bigger sweet spots, can help get the trajectory you want (low launch or high launch) are more forgiving, have better shafts etc.  So, unless you buy a bad new set, if you played the same loft in your irons, irrespective of the number stamped on it, you are more likely to get better distance from a modern club.

This is one of the myths that the club manufacturers have sold to us consumers. That there is such a thing as a "bigger" sweet spot. The sweet spot is as it always was, a tiny spot within the clubhead that describes the "center of gravity" of the clubhead. It is the size of a pin point and can never be any larger! 

I realize that this can be considered esoteric, but it's really not. The basic laws of physics aren't really all that complicated. The center of gravity describes one specific point within a mass. It is often said that the moon orbits the Earth. What they actually do is orbit each other around their common center of gravity.  What the club manufacturers have done is move weight all around the outside of the center of the clubface, increasing its resistance to twisting from an off center hit. This is increasing the Moment of Inertia, or MOI. 

 

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23 minutes ago, Buckeyebowman said:

This is one of the myths that the club manufacturers have sold to us consumers. That there is such a thing as a "bigger" sweet spot. The sweet spot is as it always was, a tiny spot within the clubhead that describes the "center of gravity" of the clubhead. It is the size of a pin point and can never be any larger! 

I realize that this can be considered esoteric, but it's really not. The basic laws of physics aren't really all that complicated. The center of gravity describes one specific point within a mass. It is often said that the moon orbits the Earth. What they actually do is orbit each other around their common center of gravity.  What the club manufacturers have done is move weight all around the outside of the center of the clubface, increasing its resistance to twisting from an off center hit. This is increasing the Moment of Inertia, or MOI. 

 

The sweetspot and the club's center of gravity are two different things. The center of gravity on a clubhead isn't likely to be on the face at all. When manufacturers talk about the sweetspot, they're talking about the area on the face where the energy transfer is most efficient: the area on the face when hit where the ball speed is the highest. All the technology that goes into club design to make clubheads more forgiving are aimed at reducing the energy or ball speed loss from missing the sweetspot, effectively enlarging it.

On a vintage blade you might lose 15 yards if you miss the sweet spot by 1/4" where on a modern GI club you might only lose 5. It makes the "good hitting area" bigger and that's why they market it as a larger sweetspot.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's true that lofts have gotten stronger over the years. I have a set of circa 1982 Ping Eye 2 irons and the lofts are about one club stronger than the Mizuno JPX 850 forged I've been playing for four years. In fact the Taylormade M2s I just got are nearly one club stronger than the Mizunos.

One quick question: can you now replace steel shafts with graphite in iron sets? I remember years ago that was discouraged because of club weight and balance.

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My 1972 Hogan Apex 6 iron is 33.5 degrees loft, 37.5 inches length.

718 Titleist AP3 6 iron is 28 degrees, same length.

15 yards difference for me.

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