Iron lofts and gapping

Hi all,

I’m thinking about getting myself some new irons. I got my current set about 8 years ago. I’m going to go get fit, but I’m curious for any thoughts to arm me beforehand so to speak.

My current set has a 48* PW (Titleist 714CB/MB combo set bent 1* weak). I got them bent a degree weak because it fit my gapping better and I’m pretty steep so slightly more bounce was beneficial. Anyway, the three sets that I’m sort of thinking about at the moment are the Titleist T100, T100S and Srixon ZX7. The T100 are about 2* stronger than my current set (after they’ve been bent) and the T100S are basically a club stronger. The Srixon are similar to the T100.

The tempting thing about the T100S is right now I have 2-PW, so I could just get 3-AW and they’d be the same lofts I currently play, just a different number on the bottom. Where I’m a little lost is the length and lie are both going to be different from current. I could get them adjusted for length and lie so that they match exactly, but is that going to mess anything else up?

I have T100s and love em

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And here we have one of my pet peeves with the naming convention. Do you mean T100s as in the plural of T100 or T100s as in the T100s model?

I have the t100s

The strong lofts :slight_smile:

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Isn’t a lot of this going to be addressed at the fitting?

Yes - just looking to get some ideas before I go. Only have an hour and the more I know beforehand the more efficient and effective I see the fitting being.

Write down your questions before you go. Gaping will be addressed, my guess is that you will add a club on low end of bag. Nothing wrong with the strong lofts through the set, it just becomes a little bit of a chore at times to gap the top end and bottom end around them.


From the cheap seats…nothing wrong with new clubs…especially if the old ones aren’t working for you. My irons are circa 1988. I love them, I strike them well, I am on my 4th iteration of shaft. And I re-grip as needed. I have a 4 wedge system from Cleveland that are like 10 years old but work well. I did lose my 2 or 3 iron depending how you look at it, for a 7W (years ago). I know the lofts and lies of my clubs. From SW thru 4i I keep a 4* gap between each club, for me that translates to 10-12 yds in distance on a stock swing. I check this every year, now easier with trackman! Anyways, for me, I don’t see gigantic differences in iron technology. You hit them the way you hit them. The metal woods…well my current Drivers are all about 8-10 years old in “tech”. I’ve hit the M6 and I also Hit my Taylor SLDR and my Adams 9064…There wasn’t a huge difference to re-invest $599 except to say I have an M6 in my bag if you get what I’m saying. I stopped worrying a long time ago about what other people were hitting. I go back to the story of Hogan, after this guy was playing with asked one too many questions in a practice round (what did you hit) as Ben had dropped a shot to 6ft from like 130yds. Hogan proceeded to drop 12 balls on the fairway, and hit each ball with a different club in his bag onto to the green from 130 yds…and said who cares what I hit…play your own game and stormed off the course. I remember watching guys at Pebble on #7 have to hit 3i on a 110 yd hole. Whatever, works for you and whatever number is on a club matters less than how far and str8 and accurate you are! One quick edit that I have noticed the newer clubs are longer 7iron to 7iron because the lofts are stronger especially in like my cleekers from 30 years ago, but the shaft changes have definitely kept my distance and speeds up, I have always been a decent mid-iron and down ball striker…The new 7 iron definitely will go further… but is also alot less accurate because for me the new 7iron is more like my 5 or 6 iron in loft depending… In my current bag…my gap wedge is 50* loft… my old pitching wedge that the Cleveland replaced was 51* loft… interesting right?

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Have you tried demo’ing a new set, at like Club Champion, a demo day or such? Reason I ask is, the newer stuff is supposed to give you about a club more-ish, with forgiveness.

Could all be BS, of course. I’m all for going with which you’re comfortable, but if there is measurable improvement in the newest stuff, seems worthwhile to try it. IMHO…

EDIT: As I reread it, why’d you reshaft 3-4 times? I get trying to be dialled into a new swing speed (and I badly need to reshaft my irons to S, maybe a light X), but 4 times seems…odd?

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the original shaft in my irons were TTDG S500, after 8 years or so I dropped to S300…lighter weight, Then I went to an S200 after another 8 years. 3 years ago I put in the x100s…My swing speeds have changed throughout the years. I love my cavity back irons…I like the look and feel… anyway after alot of trials the new 7 irons definitely fly further! Why because the lofts are about the same as right in between my 5 and 6 iron…no other reason. My Spalding cavity backs circa 1989 are very forgiving and still perform, instead of buying new clubs, the new shafts and obviously grips increased the performance I had lost due to aging (of me). My 7i is 38*, The new ones I hit were 28*… I hope that answers your question… Same thing with Drivers…I can 100% tell you for normal guys with 90-105 mph swing speed…a new driver 2021 model…might, just might get you 3-4 extra yards compared to like my Adams 9064, UL100 or, TM SLDR from 10-11 years ago… is that worth the investment? (like $700) Just a personal question. Distance is alot and I mean alot in matching yourself up to the right golf ball! But, that’s my personal feeling…
If I were to look at a new set, I’d most likely go with sub70. They really put alot of TLC into their craft. I have gone for 3 fittings at Galaxy. My 7 iron goes 156 and it’s is pretty decent on the dispersion after 10 balls and once I hit the last 5 balls…I’m usually pretty str8. The last irons I demoed were TM M2. I was hitting the 7i 184…but the dispersion was no where near as tight as my clubs…Well the loft on it was 28.5*, My Spalding 5i is 28*…I hit my 5 iron 183…spot on. And the dispersion was almost the same. The only thing different was the shaft length on mine was 1/2" longer. So comparing apples to apples…you shouldn’t compare your 7i to a new 7i, you have to compare a 28* loft to a 28* loft. That’s also from the cheap seats. Here’s what I’ll tell you…if you like your irons…(i love mine)… go hit new clubs. Find out what kind of shaft is in them. Take your same like lofted club, reshaft it exactly with what you just hit. It’s not very expensive to do that. Just the 1 club. See how you like that and a re-shaft investment is a lot less than $600 for 8 new irons… if you want a little extra distance, if you re-shaft, just add a 1/2" more in length. You can always lop it off or put a 1/2 " extension on the butt end. I do my own regripping so it’s EZ to do…Just my take!

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One thing about irons in general…and I might be strange for looking at it this way. When PING Eye 2s came out, even Hogan took notice with EDGE, Spalding with the Top Flites and Cavity Tour Editions (which I have) those years were, IMO, the greatest technological advances in irons ever. Materials have changed, but loft & lie and Swing weight make the difference…Then it’s how you like the look of the club. I never liked the sharp edge of the Ping Eye2 but the iSi were decent enough… The Hogan’s always “felt” heavy to me. I’ve hit alot of different clubs up to the M2s lately…I guess I just dont see it being worth the investment. Drivers on the other hand, I personally think Adams really woke people up 15 years ago. TM bought them for the patents on their Driver technology…no other reason. Ping, Callaway, Titleist, Cobra have finally caught up and it’s an even playing field… but it was about 15 years ago the era of the 300 yd drive came into being. Anything since has been incremental… The biggest change that no one ever seems to bring up (besides the damn ball, alot of this is ball technology) how about this…Maybe on the Top End the athlete’s that play this game are that much better. I mean 25 years ago, the only lifting some of these guys ever did was 12oz. if you get my drift (or draught). Now these guys are stretching and lifting and training at least 4 days a week seriously…It used to just be Tiger and VJ…now all these guys are athletic animals!

Loft strengthening has gotten absolutely ridiculous in the last decade or two. OTOH, they claim they need to—due to materials improvements allowing much lower CG—otherwise the balls launch higher than a e.g., 7-iron should. That they go 10-15 yards further is, I’m sure, just a happy accident.

My current 7 is a 34 degree. My 8’s the 38. But my sticks were lengthened not quite 1 inch, to get the lies more upright. Which explains some of the distance gains too, though I was much more happy with the improved consistency, more centered-contact, the lengthening seems to have given me, than any bump in distance.

I’d cheerfully just buy the right irons—Apex 21s and Ping G425s look awesome----and/or use whatever the Wishon or somebody-else-certified clubfitter puts me into, but I can’t swing the 1k cost or so. (Even now, with the new job that barely leaves me time to post here, nevermind practice.) So I tried tinkering.

EDIT: I read some more of your post. Yep, I put the stainless and graphite extensions in myself. Graphite was a pain, but works now. Gauging the shaft opening is vital. As is thorough surface prep.

Haven’t fully reshafted a club yet, but I’m sure it’s within my capabilities. Grips are easy to change—albeit I can’t take them off w/o destroying them. But reshafting is one of those things I’d like to get right the first time, with a fitter, and if I’m using a fitter already, why not just get new sticks?

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I have a pretty funny Craig Stadler story, from my time working at Pebble… Yeah, the overall fitness of these guys has really skyrocketed. Before, it was just guys like Keith Clearwater, (“Mr. Butt”, my wife at the time nicknamed him) who were known for hitting the gym. You had stories like Johnny Miller saying his timing was irrevocably jacked up from the muscle he put on, working on his ranch in the offseason after his Open successes.

Nowadays I mean, look at Bryson. Look at the kids on KFT with driving averages 10 yds above PGA guys. The future is now, old men. They have to fix the ball, and I’m not sure how they can do it.

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LOL! Lower CG? maybe? Sounds more like an excuse to try and sell clubs to a gullible public. Not much improvement in forged blades…they will always be what they are. The game improvement clubs…I honestly don’t see it. The shaft technology has definitely made strides over the last couple of years and that’s what you need to get matched up with. I look at loft, lie, flexpoint in the shaft, swing weight, golf ball. I know what loft flies what for me. I don’t worry about much else. I hit my clubs and try to get them synched in. Here’s another tidbit. Our first hole measures 3* uphill and 300 to the front edge. It’s measured on a dogleg too. I have played with a ton of amateur players in the 20 years I have been there. It’s open, you can cut the dogleg and it’s like 302 to center of green going by modern GPS. I have never seen anyone drive the green, even left or right. I have hit to 45 yds or so… So would a Driver or new irons help me in general… NOPE! Too much inflation and infatuation with how far particular clubs go. In the end, its for the majority of how we play…figure out how to get from point A to Point B in 4 shots…you do that…it’s par golf on most courses.

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Change the compression…EZ enough. Lower the amount of actual allowable velocity off the clubface…especially for pros. I’d love to hear the walrus story! There’s some awesome recent podcasts of JD… he’s still drunk as a skunk! How he’s even alive amazes me.

There’s a couple of decent threads in GolfWRX forums, with Wishon opining too, i want to say around 2019 and more recently, about how some clubheads and shaft combos were resulting in higher than normal launch. Whether that’s due to better MOI for the heads penalizing mishits less, clubhead face compositions allowing higher coefficient of restitution, lower CG and different shaft kick points resulting in higher launch: I dunno. But the effect was there, and, according to claims in the articles, clubtesters were trying out these new clubs at the older accepted lofts, and not liking the ballooning flight. Shrug.

Totally with you on the ‘tighter dispersion can trump another 15 yards’ every day. Much prefer a set with misses +/- 4 degrees, but 165 yd 6-iron, versus +/-8 degrees, but I bust a few 190.

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The Craig Stadler story…

OK, I’ve mentioned here before that I used to be a bellman/valet parking attendant at the Inn at Spanish Bay, about 25 years ago. (Jesus, where does the time go?) It’s the sister hotel to the Lodge at Pebble Beach. During the AT&T Pro-Am, we’d get a bunch of pros, celebs, and media who’d stay with us.

Normal procedure when you check into our hotel, you pull up, an army of bellmen greet you, show you where registration is, hand you your valet parking ticket, and where your luggage will be going. Your golf clubs would either remain in your vehicle, stored in our bag storage, or sent up to the room if you insisted. (We hated that last, especially as it was often uncompensated. OTOH, slip the bellman a 10 or 20, and I’d witness one of our guys shining shoes and cleaning out clubfaces with a toothpick and cleaner.) But we touched the clubs, and the rest of your baggage. (First-time parents are the absolute f%#*ing worst on that score, incidentally.)

For the PGA guys, we got read the riot act by my supervisor. Do Not Touch The Clubs. (But do grab the rest of the ridiculous amount of crap these guys could stuff in an Oldsmobile courtesy car. I once ran two full bell carts of dry-cleaning to Jesper Parnevik’s room. I almost ran out of places to hang it.) But really, don’t touch their sticks. The caddy, at that point, was supposed to appear, take them, and do whatever with them.

So far so good. Tournament came, went, and Craig Stadler was sharing a car with some other guy, and checking out. We had just finished packing his car with all four (2 pros, 2 caddies) guys’ stuff, but the trunk wouldn’t close. Too much stuff.

Keep in mind, at that point, I’m pretty good at playing Luggage Tetris. I’m better at it than most of the staff, and all of us are better at it than you. Nonetheless, it barely won’t close. I’m not about to Igor the trunk lid shut, right on top of two Touring Pros’ golf clubs. I could just imagine the Snap!

Here comes Stadler, leaving the entrance, walking to the car, with the minor resting bitchface like he usually had, and he looks at me. Who is now looking worried. Gives me a big grin, hops up into the air, and lands his ass on the trunk lid, which clicks. Hands me an extra 20 bucks, laughs, and they drive off.

Neat guy. As most of them were. Payne Stewart was pretty cool.


Well I’m surprised you didn’t say he dented it with that keister!

I would agree in most part of how you feel.
Modern irons are more forgiving, that is, if one cares about the slightest forgiveness. They can not expend the sweet spot as they did with the drivers, since there is no space to move the weight around.
The recent craze of filling the small cavity barely produced a small improvement for feel.
If anyone need more distance, they could pretend their 5 iron is actually a 6 iron.
Another way is to acquire the physical condition which will allow one to apply more swing speed.
I’ll never be 6’2", 195 lbs, also in my 20’s youth; since my growth had stopped more than half a century ago.
I believe that I had achieved close to my maximum for distance in golf with my physical make up; by comparing to younger and larger golfers in my group.
I’ll ne happy to maintain the current status as long as I could.
Didn’t they say it only requires 250 yards in driving distance to get to a scratch index ?

Club Champion fitting is reliable; I’d recommend going with whatever shaft and head they find fits you best. Forget about trying to get a specific brand name or the fitting is a waste of money. I got fit a while back, expected to get Callaway irons (which I’d had off the shelf previously and liked), and even said to the fitter what I wanted to look at. But after an hour, Cobra had risen to the top. I got a set of Cobra irons and never looked back. Also, it’s the shaft that most matters, as it’s the engine of the club. Good luck and trust the fitter.