Tip For Swingweighting Taper Tip Steel Shafts With Tip Pins With Video Demonstration!

Hireko Golf Technical Director Demonstrates A Quick And Easy Way To Swingweight Taper Tip Steel Shafts

Lead Tip Pins For Steel Golf ShaftsThose lead tip pins you bought for steel iron shafts aren’t going to fit inside a 0.355” taper tip steel shaft – no way, no how! Those were developed for 0.370” parallel tip shafts only.  Sure, you can use tungsten powder, a cork and a ram rod but there is one other solution you might not have thought of to swingweight 0.355” taper tip steel iron shafts.

OK, I’ll admit our labeling of certain products could be a little better.  One of those examples is for the lead tip pins for steel wood shafts. If you are asking “Who still uses steel wood shafts anymore?” all I can say is they come in might handy for 0.355” taper tip steel iron shafts too.  These tip pins will fit the inside of the taper tipped steel shaft rather loosely, but the head on the pin will prevent it from going up and down the shaft as it will get trapped between the tip of the shaft and the bottom of the hosel.  Just make sure not to pound the head onto the shaft too much during installation otherwise you could break off the head of the tip pin.

To take up the slack, you can take a 7/8” long strip of ½” wide lead tape and wrap it around the stem.  You could always use masking tape as well.  In either case epoxy will fill up the void, eliminate any rattling and most importantly increase the swingweight to your desired setting.

VIEW VIDEO BLOG BELOW ON HOW TO SWINGWEIGHT TAPER TIP STEEL SHAFTS WITH TIP PINS!

> SHOP HERE FOR TAPER TIP STEEL GOLF SHAFTS

Taper Tip Steel Shafts

Should You Ditch the Driver?

Power Play Warp Speed Brassie Fairway WoodWinner of 2013 British Didn’t Carry a Driver!


Golfers can learn a lot by watching the pros from a game management standpoint.  Take for example the winner of this year’s British Open championship who didn’t even carry a golf driver.  Sure these guys are long, but there was a lot of trouble lurking in and around the fairway requiring them to position the ball off the tee.

At Hireko Golf, we offer a number of products to help golfers at all levels.  One such product is the Power Play Warp Speed Brassie.  The large footprint at address gives the player a sense of more confidence off of the tee, plus will be more accurate than a typical 3-wood. The shorter assembly length should allow golfers to make more solid contact on the face with minimized face angle errors at impact compared to their driver.  Sure, you may not be as long, but if the ball goes out 220 yards and lands in the fairway versus 235 yards to the right in the second cut of Download Hireko Golf Equipment Catalogrough, not only are you going to be closer to the hole on their next shot, but it will be an easier shot too.

This is just a friendly reminder of one specialized product to help you (or one of your customers) lower your score if the number of fairways hit is becoming more of an irregularity or non-existent. If a pro winning a major championship can leave both his golf driver and ego in the parking lot, then any golfer can.

> CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE THE POWER PLAY WARP SPEED BRASSIE FAIRWAY WOOD!

SK Fiber Wraith Graphite Shaft

Hireko’s Golf Putter Buyers Guide

Choosing the proper golf putter should come down to the player’s tendencies on the green more so than appearance. 

Hireko has a large selection of golf putters available and selecting the right one for your or your customer’s game might sound like an intimidating challenge. Here are a few thoughts I want to share with you for the secrets to the proper selection.

Download Hireko Golf Equipment CatalogAre you left handed?
This might be your most important question to ask.  Why?  Simply because not every model can be produced in left hand and make it profitable no matter what company you are talking about.  If you happen to putt as a southpaw, then you will have fewer choices, but at least those will be among our best-selling models.

What are your golf shot tendencies?
Choosing the proper putter should come down to the player’s tendencies on the green more so than appearance.  However, players who purchase a golf putter often do so by impulse and that is reason garages and basements are cluttered with flatsticks that didn’t make the grade out on the course.

Golf Putter Head weight and size
Forgiveness of a putter is what helps those miss-hit putts fall in rather than lip out and is a simple function of the putter’s weight and its dimensions. Simply put, a heavier putter is less likely to twist on a heel and toe shot than the same sized and shaped putter that is lighter.  Plus if you have two of the same weight putters, the one with more weight toward the heel and toe and back will be more forgiving too.

Remember we talked about tendencies?  Here is a key point.  If one races the ball past the hole all the time, then they need a putter head that weighs less than what they are currently using.  This type of person may have to give up some left and right directional control for distance control.  Conversely, golfers continually short of the hole will benefit from a heavier putter head.  Never up, never in!

Hosel ConfigurationHosel configuration
Hosel configuration can be broken down into two categories; hosel type and shaft axis location.  In each of those categories are subcategories.  For instance the hosel type may feature an offset plumber’s neck, slant neck, long neck, short neck, a tiny post or tang that the shaft fits over or a socket that may require a curved putter shaft. This controls the amount of offset (if any) in the putter that controls side-to-side direction.

A center shafted or heel shafted putter are two examples of the Putter Shaft Axisshaft’s axis location.  But what we are more interested in where upper portion of the shaft would intersect the face.  Even though a curved shaft or plumber’s neck may be located closer to the heel, the shaft axis will pass closer to the middle of the face.

The importance for this has an effect on the amount of toe hang a golf putter may have.   If you balanced your putter over your finger, you will see that either the toe of the putter will point to the ground (toe hang) or it may point straight toward the ceiling (called face balanced).

Golf Putter Toe HangWhile you may have noticed this phenomenon, you may not understand what the importance is. Certain strokes benefit from varying degrees of toe hang.  Golfers that have more of a straight back / straight through stroke will typically putt better with a face balanced or nearly face balanced putter.

The majority of golfers will have a slight arcing putt. This may be referred to as an open gate-close gate swing, inside-square-inside, etc.  Basically the club, as it travels backwards in the takeaway, goes inside and opens. The putter returns along the same path and then at one precise time the face is square (hopefully at impact) before returning on an inside path and the face closing on the follow through.

Golfers who have a pronounced arc path or more of an exaggerated inside-square-inside stroke generally prefer heel-shafted putters, which will have a large amount of toe hang. We have included a chart to categorize each of the putters we offer.

Golf Putting Arc

Style
Once you have selected the grouping of heads that fit your or your customer’s putting stroke and level of forgiveness, now is the time to finalize the selection based on the appearance or special features.  Realize the majority of mallet design putters will be face balanced where anything heel-shafted will have a high toe hang. If you prefer a belly or near-belly length or opt for a broomstick or side saddle stroke, we have putters for that as well. Our Dynacraft SPOT putter is a model in which you can change the hosel offset and shaft axis position to suit all styles of strokes.

Face Treatment
Some of the putters offer different striking surfaces.  For instance, a select number of our putters have inserts that would be softer than the body of the head.  The softest inserts will be in the Bionik 500 series putters, while aluminum will be a little firmer.  The Acer i-Sight series putters have microgroove to help reduce friction for better roll.  Lastly, the two Dynacraft Hindsight putters offer roll face technology and a grooved face for the truest roll of any our putters.

Final thoughts
While you have chosen the proper style of putter head to suit your game, don’t forget about having the length sized correctly so you or your customer is in a comfortable athletic posture and has their eyes over the ball to help with alignment as that is the number one reason for missed putts.  While we talked about head weight, think of overall weight as well.  Golfers that are “wristy” and have directional control issues could benefit from counter-balancing and/or a larger grip.  Hireko offers products to help with both as we have a large selection of putter grips (some of which are heavy and act as a counterbalance) as well counterweights.

Brand

Model

Stroke

Forgiveness

Hand

Weight

Dynacraft

SPOT

All

Medium

RH

355

Value

Two-Way

All

Very Low

RH/LH

300

Acer

I-Sight San Miguel

Pronounced Arc

Medium

RH/LH

350

iBella

Volare

Pronounced Arc

Medium

RH

370

Acer

I-Sight Anacapa

Slight Arc

Medium

RH/LH

350

Acer

I-Sight Santa Barbara

Slight Arc

Medium

RH/LH

350

Bionik

101

Slight Arc

Medium

RH/LH

330

Bionik

105

Slight Arc

Medium

RH

320

Bionik

501

Slight Arc

Medium-High

RH

355

Bionik

502

Slight Arc

Medium-High

RH/LH

330

Bionik

503

Slight Arc

High

RH/LH

330

Bionik

504

Slight Arc

High

RH/LH

335

Bionik

505

Slight Arc

High

RH

360

Bionik

101 Nano

Slight Arc

Medium

RH/LH

330

Bionik

105 Nano

Slight Arc

Medium

RH

320

Value

Black Zinc 506

Slight Arc

Low

RH/LH

295

Value

Black Zinc 509

Slight Arc

Low

RH

295

Value

Black Zinc 515

Slight Arc

Low

RH

295

Value

Black Zinc 520

Slight Arc

Low

RH

305

Value

Brass

Slight Arc

Low

RH

300

Value

Gray Zinc

Slight Arc

Low

RH

295

Acer

I-Sight Santa Cruz

Straight Back / Straight Through

High

RH/LH

450

Acer

I-Sight Santa Rosa

Straight Back / Straight Through

Medium-High

RH/LH

400

Bionik

Bionik 207

Straight Back / Straight Through

Medium-High

RH/LH

335

Bionik

Bionik 207 Belly

Straight Back / Straight Through

High

RH

400

Dynacraft

Hindsight

Straight Back / Straight Through

Medium-High

RH

360

Dynacraft

Hindsight II

Straight Back / Straight Through

Medium-High

RH

360

Dynacraft

On-Line

Straight Back / Straight Through

High

RH

365

Dynacraft

Triple Threat

Straight Back / Straight Through

High

RH

360

iBella

Tiara

Straight Back / Straight Through

High

RH

365

> CLICK HERE TO SHOP FOR HIREKO GOLF PUTTERS

> CLICK HERE TO SHOP FOR HIREKO GOLF PUTTER SHAFTS

> CLICK HERE TO SHOP FOR HIREKO GOLF PUTTER GRIPS

Dynacraft Online Putter Bundle

Do Touring Golf Pro’s Play Graphite Shafts In Their Irons?

If someone asks you “Do Touring Golf Pro’s play graphite shafts in their irons?” you can confidently say yes, some do.

In my position I take it for granted that the professional golfers play a lot of products or conceptual ideas that may not be available to the general public (at least yet).  After all, this is the testing grounds for the manufacturers.  I’d like to share with you a comment I received like the one early last week from a customer who said “Graphite iron shafts must only be for ladies or seniors, because I don’t seem them in stock irons or see the

pro’s using them on TV.”  The fact is, we offer many men’s R, S and even X-flex graphite iron shafts and they sell too, just not as well as steel iron shafts.

Well, TV and print media can be very powerful and can imprint thoughts or ideas into the general public. If you see enough of something or not enough, you begin to take it as a fact. For instance, Congress can’t ever seem to work together.  That is because the media only wants you to see the one side of the story that sells.  I am sure there had to be at least one or two things in the past year or two our duly elected representatives did by working together.  Maybe the media can report on that too.

Let’s look at golf for a moment. Belly putters were nothing new as they had been around for nearly 50 years.  But a couple years ago, you started to see more and more pro’s on TV using these unorthodox looking belly putters and not only playing well, but winning with them too.  All the sudden there was renewed interest from the media that boiled over into the general public. This is what we call a trend and they tend to come and go.  Let’s face it, everyone (or company) is looking for the next big trend in order to capitalize on it financially.

Download Hireko Golf CatalogHowever, certain trends tend to stick around and become a way of everyday life.  How did we survive before we had computers and cell phones? In golf, we are fortunate to have rubber golf grips, metal and eventually titanium golf clubheads, graphite shafts for woods and hybrid golf clubheads to name a few.  At one point in time those were trends too.

Recently at the 2013 Crowne Plaza Invitational (Colonial CC in Fort Worth, TX) a professional golfer did not only play Aldila graphite shafts in his irons, but he won with them. The following week, the winner of the Memorial also won with graphite-shafted irons.  To be honest, it is not uncommon to see 5 – 10 pros play with graphite-shafted irons on a weekly basis, according to Mickey Uhlaender at UST. But if more and more do and they excel, the media is going to jump on that bandwagon.

The point I am trying to make is there are viable options for consumers that may not be totally mainstream.  Heck, Hireko Golf falls in that category. I remember in the 1990’s that G. Loomis iron shafts became popular on tour for a while.  Other companies had brief success on tour with graphite shafted iron as well like UST with their UST Tour Weight iron shafts.  You can trust me that you will see more and more graphite-shafted irons put into play on tour.  Back-to-back wins by two different golfers is a step in the right direction.

Who knows if this will be a trend that will continue to grow or become the standard of what we see sold in the future.  That will all depend upon exposure from the media, affordability and most importantly tangible playability benefits a consumer can actually see and feel. But if someone asks you “Do any of the Pro’s play graphite shafts in their irons?” you can confidently say yes, some do.

Graphite Design Shaft Sale

Does the Flex of Your Wedge Shaft Matter?

Maybe a change to your wedge shaft may rejuvenate your short game too, but just don’t assume if you see a “wedge” shaft that is the only option you have.

SK Fiber Wedge Force Golf Shaft

SK Fiber Wedge Force Shaft
Finally a performance graphite golf shaft designed specifically for the scoring wedges. Crafted with a firm butt and responsive tip section for optimal launch angles and ball spin. BUY HERE FOR ONLY $38 EACH

How often do you take a full swing with your golf wedges? Trace back to your last round and recall all those ¾ or ½ pitch shots, chips from just beyond the apron or your greenside bunker play – all of those are taken with less than a full shot. Now think about this for a second. Since they are taken with less than a full effort and your swing speed is reduced, so should the flex of your shaft be reduced as well? After all a slower swing speed player is recommended to use a softer flexed shaft than someone stronger than them. Therefore I wanted to investigate does golf wedge flex makes any difference in accuracy and feel.

Download Hireko Golf Equipment CatalogFirst, let’s look at buying habits amongst consumers. If you look at all the name brand golf wedges on the market, what kind of shafts do they have in them? The #1 shaft by far is a version of the iconic Dynamic Gold S-flex taper tip (typically labeled as “Wedge” flex). You may also see some similar weight and stiffness golf shafts in the likes of the KBS Tour Shaft or the Dynamic Gold Spinner golf shaft too. But let me emphasize this fact, in a blade style wedge from any of the major manufacturers, they do not offer a single Regular of Senior flex shaft to match what you may be using in the rest of your set. So in the minds of the major OEMs, either flex must not matter in golf wedges or they only offer this option because the professional golfers like that combination (again in a blade style wedge) and the rest of the golfing population are lemmings and buy what the manufacturers dictate. OK, maybe I am a cynic.

To test my theory, I used the SK Fiber Wedge Force golf shafts because they came in 3 basic flexes and had a similar shaft profile to one another. In addition, as the flex is reduced, the weight reduced as well. I set these up at 35.75” with a slightly oversize grip into three identical loft / lie Power Play Raw Spin 56º wedges. Each came out at D3. The rest of the specs are below.

Wedge Flex Chart 1
I should state what the 5-iron flex equivalent is.  In steel golf shafts, the frequency increases @ 4-5 cpm per club (shorter) due to the normal tip trimming or the suggested raw length of the taper tip shaft by the manufacturer.  So if we were to account for the shorter length and slightly higher swingweights on the wedges compared to the rest of the numbers irons, you would typically see a 15-17 cpm increase in frequency over the 5-iron.

The literature from SK Fiber Golf (I know we own it now) inadvertently lists the 100g model as A-flex, 110 as R-flex and 120 as S-flex.  While there may be some A-flex steel-shafted #5 irons that measure between 293-295 cpm, there are a number of popular lightweight S-flex steel shafts that do as well.  So in reality, the 100 model is not an A-flex shaft. Another way to think about it is a softer version in the SK Fiber Wedge Force shaft family (or Baby Bear) compared to the 110 (Momma Bear) and 120 (Papa Bear) just the same way that not all S-flex shafts are the same stiffness.

To put this all in perspective, if a Dynamic Gold S-flex taper tip wedge shaft was set up in the same manner, the cut shaft weight would have been @ 119 g, overall weight of 471 g (would have had to use a lighter weight head to achieve D3) and a frequency of 339.  This would have been close to the Wedge Force 120 model specifications.

I not only wanted to test partial shots but also full shots with each of these clubs.  For the record, I normally play R-flex in heavier weight steel and S-flex in some of the lighter and more flexible offerings. Another golfer who I had conduct the same test was also using R-flex in his irons and of course S-flex in his golf wedges (because that is all that came stock with them).

Finesse shots
The range I frequent for all my testing is one of the top 100 in the nation, so there are lots of flags set to certain distances to make it easier to hone in on your short yardages.  Alternating among the three sand wedges as well as different targets, I came to the conclusion quickly that having the proper length (for solidness of contact), loft (for trajectory), lie (for direction) are far more important based on the accuracy of these variable weight and flex wedges.  I couldn’t say one way or another that any one of the golf wedges was night and day difference in distance and directional control.  However, the lightest and most flexible felt the best and most natural to me.  Based on feel and no loss of control, I would have picked the SK Fiber Wedge Force 100 golf shaft or a shaft based upon the literature I honestly would have never had even tried.

The other player had a similar experience as me as far as the more flexible and lighter wedge didn’t cause him to loose accuracy.  Of course at the beginning I did not tell him what I was handing to him.  However, he could detect the weight differential of the 3 immediately, but could not tell there was any flex difference until later when I told him.  Over time, I thought the two he hit best were the lightest and the heaviest wedge, but in the end he preferred the feel of the heavier model as it was more familiar to what he had been using.

Full shots
Here is where I thought the biggest issue would be concerning distance and directional control by moving up and down in flex.  When I say a full shot, I was not referring to jumping out of my shoes and trying to hit the ball farther. Who does that with a golf wedge anyway?  What I was surprised by was the directional consistency of each one.  After all these were blade style wedges offering little in the way of game improvement features. On the other hand they are shorter so they should be more controllable and easier to make solid contact. There was no glaring tendency other than the heaviest shafted wedge may have tended to go more right of my target than the other two.  I felt the lightest one went a tad higher and further, but if so, I would have needed a launch monitor to tell me for sure.

The other player felt more comfortable with the heaviest shafted wedge for full shots.  The way he describe the feeling, he had more momentum in his swing with the heavier weight which required less effort to swing.  We could have added swingweight (via lead tape) to the head of the lighter two shafts to see if that would have changed his opinion.

Re-testing
I wanted to repeat the exercise so as not to find my conclusions a fluke. One thing I wanted to make sure I tried was to add 17g of weight to the Wedge Force 100 golf shaft with a clay-like substance that I can easily add or remove that will also stick to the outer side of the shaft when hit.  The weight was placed @ 14” from the butt end so I could achieve the exact same overall weight as the Wedge Force 120 and have the same swingweight too.  So essentially I was testing flex only (at least on paper).  After hitting several shots with the club modified this way, I can tell you that even though the overall weight and swingweight were the same, they didn’t feel alike.  There had to be a difference in the moment of inertia (MOI) between the two.  No longer could I judge distance as well with the additional weight in that position.  After removing the clay-like substance, I was back to form.

Next, I experimented by adding some weight to the heads of the Wedge Force 100, 110 and 120 shafts until I felt the performance improved. This made more of a difference than did the flex of the shaft, especially on the two lighter shaft models.  I had to wait until I got back to my lab to see what the swingweights would be and subsequent flex as the additional weight will reduce the flex as well.

Wedge Flex Article Chart 1

In the end, I had three sand wedges with completely different flexed and weighted sand wedges I had confidence I could hit my targets on both partial and full shots.

Conclusion
I’ll admit pitching chipping has never been my strong suit as I don’t practice enough.  During this exercise over a three day span, that part of my game that had been sadly neglected has now become one of my strengths.  The first night out on the course with the softer and lighter wedge shaft was probably the best exhibition I have had in years to and around the green.

There are by far more club fitting parameters to fit for in a wedge besides flex.  So maybe the OEMs aren’t wrong in only offering one flex shaft for all.  But on the other hand, feel is so integral to this game.  As most shots are made with less than full shots and subsequent slower swing speed, I would opt for a shaft weight (first), swingweight (second) and flex (third) that feels most comfortable in my wedge. That is assuming I already know what head, length and grip size I need first.

To play devil’s advocate, I didn’t use a very flexible ladies or senior graphite shaft so I am not saying that flex does not matter altogether.  But those tend to be much lighter than the shafts I tried.  Anyway, I did say that weight and weight distribution (swingweight or MOI) are more critical factors.  But those that nitpick over a whether to tip trim a little more to offset a higher bottom to bore measurement or soft step a raw length or two to create a little more feel are missing the big picture.

Maybe a change to your wedge shaft may rejuvenate your short game too, but just don’t assume if you see a “wedge” shaft that is the only option you have.  Get custom clubfit!  It can make a difference.

Grafalloy Prolaunch Golf Shaft Sale

Can You Trust Independent Golf Shaft Reviews?

Use a critical eye when viewing golf club shaft reviews

One thing you do not see me write much on in our blog are golf club shaft reviews, which can be quite a few in the course of a season.  If you (and my bosses who encourage me to do so) are wondering why, it is because there is a big dilemma that occurs every time I try to put pen to paper. I have come to the conclusion that any independent review would be unfair to our readers, not to mention our dear vendors.  Any positive or negative feedback would be only as good as how the shaft fits my unique swing.  Before I can explain what I can best do to help fellow golfers find a golf club shaft they will like, let me try to explain a few things first.

Download Hireko Golf CatalogWe are all like snowflakes
You have all heard this adage a million times before.  Go to a golf course, range or even watch golf on TV and what will you notice?  Each golfer has their own natural swing…well, like a snowflake.  No one will confuse my swing with Jim Furyk’s, Tiger Woods’ or Arnold Palmer’s.  It’s obvious, the pros don’t need the exact same swing to excel at this game; nor do you. Only equipment that complements a player’s swing has to.

One of my best friends is approximately the same age and height and we both have almost identical swing speeds with all our golf clubs.  I’ll take a new club with the shaft du jour or one that I happen to like.  He will go to hit it and says it doesn’t feel good.  The ball flight substantiates his claims too.  Then he will hand me a club he raves about the performance and feel.  I’ll end up telling him, “Meh”.

Golf Shaft fitting is all about swing speed isn’t it?
The answer to that is a big no!  While golf swing speed is a starting point, it does not tell the whole story. Speed tells you how fast an object is moving.  But the other piece of the puzzle is how and when the player loads and unloads the club.

Basics of Golf ClubmakingTo put this in perspective, loading is a force a player puts onto the golf club or golf shaft during the downswing.  The magnitude of this force is caused by the acceleration or the rate of change in the velocity during the course of the swing.  One example might be where one player exerts a very large acceleration at the initial part of the downswing. Another golfer might gradually accelerate the golf club until some point and then he/she may accelerate the club again immediately after releasing the club prior to impact. The point I am trying to make is the amount the shaft loads (or deflects) can vary even though the same swing speed is achieved at impact.

Then golf shaft fitting is all about the golf club’s frequency (butt stiffness) isn’t it?
The answer to that is a big no as well.  Recently I took three identical length golf hybrids out to the range for me and my friend to test.  Each also had a different shaft (although they were all labeled S-flex by each manufacturer).  I had to sort through my collection of golf shafts to find ones that were the same frequency (measure of shaft stiffness) and where the weights were with +/- 1 gram of one another.

Many clubmakers would assume that just because the weight, length, torque and frequencies were near identical, that these would play the same.  If you follow the Dynacraft Shaft Fitting Index I have been testing and publishing the results for the past twenty plus years, you would already know this isn’t always the case. Plus I recently acquired a new toy (called an EI Golf Shaft Profiler)  for my R&D lab that examines shafts better than what I had been using and I wanted to test a theory eliminating as many variable as possibly to come up with a conclusion.

Understanding stiffness distribution along the length of the golf club shaft
Here is a plot of deflections of those three golf shafts from the tip (left side) to the butt end (right) using a shaft profiler. To understand this chart, look at Series 3 or the deflection curve plotted in light green.  Near the tip, the deflection is far less than the others, indicating this is a stiffer tipped shaft.  When we get to the area 16” from the tip, these all have the same deflection.  As we get closer and closer to the butt end, the deflection is once again much less on the green plot line denoting a stiff butt section.  The blue line or Series 1 would have the softest tip.

Golf Hybrid Deflection Chart
My friend didn’t know the differences between these golf shafts prior to hitting them as not to form a bias.  Handing him one after another to hit, he indicated the Series 3 felt the best (most solid) to him after hitting several shots.  When he hit Series 1 (blue), he felt that it was too flexible like he had to be careful how he swung it in order to control it – something he didn’t have to worry about with the other shaft.  Remember now, these all have identical weights and frequencies (stiffness).

What he had discovered was the difference in stiffness distribution along the length of the golf shaft giving it its own unique feel. Now you know why each manufacturer produces a wide variety of golf shafts although they may be labeled R or S flex and have the same weight to appeal to specific tastes.

So how good would my golf shaft reviews be anyway?
Like I mentioned before, golf shafts that I like he doesn’t.  I hit these same three golf clubs and found the club with the Series 1 (blue) shaft to be by far the best for me.  As a matter of fact, according to the launch monitor I was 14 yards further than with the Series 3 golf shaft and with no difference in swing speed.  Well guess what, if I had given my review of these shafts, one would have been stellar and the other not so stellar.  Not to mention, if he had read the review knowing that our age, height and speed were nearly identical, he might have bit the bullet and bought the Series 1 shaft instead of the Series 3 he really liked.

How I can help golfers find the right shaft
Part of my job is to help educate customers on the products we sell.  It is not to tell which products that performs well for me and those that do not. However, if I do find a product that performs well for me, I make sure to know as much about it as I can so that I can find similar shafts to it.  The vehicle that I have used to express these findings has been our annual Hireko Golf Club Shaft Fitting Addendum which is available for free to download. By using our new measurement tool and building a better library of shaft profiles for customers and fellow clubmakers to access, they will have a better grasp of what shafts to confidently choose.

I took apart several of my golf drivers that I use in my rotation to see how their golf shaft profiles compared.  Here is a plot of 4 of them plus one additional one I threw in that I didn’t fare well with.  Can you guess which one it was? That’s right it was the one in aqua (light blue), yet again the same basic frequency as the others. One thing of note, some of these shafts are labeled by the manufacturer as regular and others as stiff, but doesn’t really matter as long as the numbers are the same.

Golf Driver Deflection Chart
Now whenever I go to the range to test a new head I have to remember to make another one up with a shaft profile my friend already likes otherwise I am not going to get any feedback on the head, only grief about the shaft he doesn’t like.

What type of golf shafts are right for your customers?
First, utilize something like our Hireko Golf QuikFit system so you can interchange different golf shafts onto the same head to eliminate all but one variable (shaft).  But more importantly when you go to set up you demo golf shaft collection, make sure to get shafts that vary from one to another so you can maximize your investment – absolutely no duplication to avoid confusing your customer and tying up your money.  Lastly, read as much as you can and personally try out the products you offer so you are intimate with them.

Save Time & Money – Epoxy Safety Tips for Clubmakers

Be wise with your golf clubmaking epoxy habits and save time and money

Hireko Golf Clubmaking Epoxy

Hireko Golf Clubmaking Epoxy Model #EP01

While your clubmaking operation may be in full gear at this time of the year, one thing you want to check on is your golf clubmaking epoxy.  Believe it or not, you are relying on its’ strength to form a long-lasting bond between any club you build or repair for your customers.  But when was the last time you checked how old it is and whether it is still effective?

Most clubmakers will assume that epoxy for golf clubmaking is good as long as there is some left in the bottles.  But that is not entirely true.  Many epoxies have shelf lives just like milk, bread or that spinach that is starting to wilt in your refrigerator.  After a year, they start to lose their strength.  After two years, I wouldn’t use it for anything golf club related.

Download Hireko Golf CatalogMark Your Bottles
No matter how organized your shop may be, I doubt you will know immediately when you last purchased it by looking through old invoices. When you receive a package with your epoxy, the first thing you should do is take your Sharpie pen and mark the date it arrived on the bottle or container and it will always be there in plain sight.  If you have the small one-job packets, don’t worry, these have an indefinite shelf life.

Individual Epoxy Packets

Individual Epoxy Packets Model #EPS-001

Buy in quantities you will consume
If you buy golf clubmaking epoxy in bulk (or in larger containers), you can save money per ounce or per club you build.  However, if it goes to waste by going past its effective date and you have to throw it out, you really haven’t saved money have you?  I guess you can still use it for small household fixes, but the point I am trying to make is buy enough to last you a full year.

By following these simple tips, you can rest assured that the clubs you assemble or repair for your customers (or yourself) is one less of life’s worries.

Model #EP01-001
Model #EP05-001
Model #EPS-001
Epoxy A+B 4oz Bottles
24 Hour Epoxy 1.0oz Tube
Individual Epoxy Packets
$8.95 each
$5.95 each
$1.50 each

Black Widow Tour Silk II Golf Grips

Hireko’s Golf Club Iron Buyers Guide

How Do I Choose The Best Golf Club Irons For My Game?

Hireko has one, if not the most extensive lines of golf irons available by anyone in the golf industry and each model is designed in house.  At first it may seem to like a daunting task to select the right one for your or your customer’s game, that’s why I want to share with you the secrets to the proper selection. What golf club irons are right for me?

Download Hireko Golf CatalogAre you a left handed golfer?
This might be your most important question to ask.  Why?  Simply because not every model can be made in left hand and make it profitable no matter what company you are talking about.  As life cycles for golf clubs in general are two or three years tops before they lose their luster and customers demand new equipment, golf club manufacturers (like yours truly) have to weigh the cost of tooling and the minimum order requirements from the foundries.  This is why only those that will be forecasted as best-selling golf irons will be offered in left hand.  Even if a model surprisingly takes off in sales that was made initially in right hand only, it will be too late to start tooling and production for the LH model as a quarter of the life cycle may have expired by the time they are in stock.  With all that said, we still offer a plethora of left handed models to suit virtually any golfer.

What is your handicap?
This is usually a question that is often asked, but I prefer not to pigeonhole certain products by handicap level, unless they made say Tour or Pro on them.  Even in those cases, there are exceptions to the rules.  You see, only a fifth of all golfers even establish or maintain a golf handicap, so essentially this question would rule out the majority of golfers to begin with.

What are your shot tendencies?
I would rather look at tendencies a player may have such as hitting the golf ball too high or too low, or maybe the customer is prone to fading or drawing the ball.  In these cases, the loft, center of gravity and amount of offset in a design are what make it unique and sets the ball at different angles from the face to correct for a specific tendency.  Sure, golf shafts also can control ball flight to a certain degree, but the bulk of the work not related to golfer’s swing comes from the head design.

Acer XF Forged Irons

Acer XF Forged Iron

How to choose the best golf club irons for your game? The following chart will act as a quick golf club iron buyers guide based on certain tendencies and help you find the right golf club iron. A couple quick notes, the models with an asterisk next to them are available in LH.  To make the chart more user-friendly certain irons make be spread out further than they actually would be.  For instance, the Acer XS Forged and Dynacraft Prophet Tour Forged Irons would fall on top of one another on the chart and make it difficult to read.

Is your trajectory too high or too low?
Often times the result of too high or low a ball flight is a direct result of the player’s swing mechanics, angle of attack and solidness of contact on the face.  For example, golfers that tend to sweep the ball at impact will likely make contact lo

iBella Obsession Irons

iBella Obsession Irons

wer on the face than someone who takes more of a divot.  Loft in conjunction with the vertical center of gravity of the head is what control trajectory.  It shouldn’t astound you that our two ladies models (iBella Bellissima Irons and Obsession Irons) will be amongst our highest launching golf iron clubheads as the lower clubhead speeds will produce less spin and height.  On the other side of the spectrum, the Power Play Caiman X2 Raw Power Irons is our lowest launching, but primarily in the mid and lower lofted golf irons.

It should also come as no surprise that the majority of the irons will fit within the medium trajectory category window as better golfers don’t want to see abnormally higher or lower ball flight than what they are used to.  While trajectory is a balance between distances and yet allowing the ball to land on the green during approach shots, direction is another key requirement as we will show next.

Buyers Guide Irons ChartUnderstanding the difference between draw versus fade enhancing

Power Play Caiman X2 Tour Blade Irons

Power Play Caiman X2 Tour Blade Irons

Before we speak about draw or fade enhancing, we need to have a starting point or what is labeled as neutral.  In this case, let’s say the middle-of-the-road iron in our line will be intended to hit the golf ball straightest for the vast majority of golf from amongst the many head designs we offer.  That means certain heads will be geared to hit the ball more left (draw enhancing), while others further right (fade enhancing) for a RH golfer.  The Power Play Caiman X2 Tour Irons would likely be the most fade enhancing due to the elongated blade length and low offset, while the Acer XF Irons and XF HT Irons the most draw enhanced.

Most golfers tend to push, fade or even slice their irons.  Certain irons do a better job of squaring the clubface by incorporating more offset or shifted the weight closer to the heel or shaft to enable the head to rotate closed.  That is why on paper the Acer XS HT and the Acer XF HT seem to be for the same type player.

More accomplished golfers are more likely to draw the ball in general and don’t need as much offset as a result.  This is why you will find fewer head that are fade enhancing as the pool of players is smaller.

Acer XS Pro Irons

Acer XS Pro Irons

Several of the entries are borderline when it comes to directional bias as they have reduced offset, but not too reduced.  This includes the Dynacraft Evolution Hybrid Irons which I consider a hollow-bodied iron more than a true hybrid.  The Acer XF Pro Irons and Acer XS Pro Irons meet the criteria as well, with the loft being the separator; one will hit the ball a little lower than the other.

Squeezing out a little more
The middle square (medium height / neutral ball flight) should fit the sweet spot of golfers playing today.  There are three very good candidates (Acer XDS React Irons, Acer XS Irons and Power Play Warp Speed Irons).  What you do not see from the chart is how they are constructed.  Of the three, the Warp Speed is the only one with a more exotic face material to help bolster ball speed and distance with all else being the same.

I hope this article has answered for you the question “how to choose the right iron set”  for my game. You can see we have a wide variety of irons to choose from, even in left hand. After reading the explanations and examining the chart, you should have a better idea of what each iron is supposed to do so you are able to confidently select the best model for your or your customer’s game.  If you are curious about an iron, I would highly recommend buying a mid-iron of the model with a shaft and flex you are familiar with.

ower Play Warp Speed Irons Win Golf Tips Editors Pick Award

Online Golf Shaft Trimming Instruction Charts Easier To Find Now! View Online Accounts Balances Too!

For those of you who have needed to find the appropriate trim chart for the shaft (and flex) you ordered we have updated our website with a nice new feature to make that task just a bit easier.  All you need to do it go to the webpage with the shaft you ordered.  Next, scroll down to where the product description is located and click on the SPECIFICATION tab.  One the right hand side of the specification table you will find the trim chart entries.  Simply click on the trim code shaded in blue and a pop up box will appear with that trim chart and any trim notes.  This is just another example of how Hireko is striving to make your club assembly operation more efficient.

Online Trim Chart Feature
Online Trim Chart Feature 2

View Account Balances
Now you view your account balances online.
1. First log into www.hirekogolf.com
2. Click on “My Orders” in the left hand column
3. Then click on “View Accounts Receivables”
and that’s it!

View Accounts Balance 1

View Account Balances 2Power Play Warp Speed Irons

 

 

 

Aftermarket versus OEM shafts – Certain “Premium” Shafts May Not Be What They Appear To Be

Don’t Get Burned – The Premium Golf Shafts You Find Listed in the Hireko Golf Catalog and Website are Indeed the Real McCoy’s

If you are paying premium dollar for premium golf shafts, should you be receiving what you thought you were ordering?  If you say “Yes”, then you better read up on a practice that is happening in the golf industry to make sure you are really getting the product and by the manufacturer you thought you were receiving all along. This article will help explain some of the difference between OEM golf companies and aftermarket golf shafts.

Aftermarket shafts versus OEM shafts What if…?
XYZ manufacturer spent months (if not years) developing a new shaft using exciting new materials and/or technology.  That golf shaft was eventually sent out on tour to validate its performance.  A few weeks later it was used in the driver of a tour player who happened to hold up the winning crystal trophy.  Word of mouth spreads and a couple weeks later starts showing up in the bags of several tour players.  The golf club shaft becomes easily spotted on TV or threads appear on-line in golf forums such as Golf WRX or MyGolfSpy.  Instantly, demand begins from the public for that golf club shaft.

Download Hireko Golf Equipment CatalogA short time later, that same shaft becomes available by a number of golf component suppliers (including Hireko Golf) often with a price tag of $149 or north of that.  Finally, Joe Q. Public can buy the exact same shaft as their favorite tour player used or won with or the one they saw in the media that they just had to have.  Are you following me?  This is the order of the universe of how those tour player aftermarket golf shafts enter the marketplace.

Hocus Pocus, what have we here?
A short time passes and all of the sudden you start to see a major manufacturer begin offering their newest golf club with XYZ-brand’s exotic new golf shaft – or is it? Maybe the silkscreen on the OEM golf shaft has marked 60 instead of a 55, meaning the aftermarket vs OEM golf shaft is a lighter version.  Or maybe the color is different, but the markings aren’t exactly like the one that you saw on Hireko’s website, catalog, Golf Digest or on a popular forum page.  You are probably asking yourself, “Hey, what the H E double hockey sticks is going on there?”

Well my friends, that is what we call “Made For” or retail shafts. These are variations off of popular or expensive aftermarket golf shafts.  These may be slightly watered down versions of the Real McCoy in order to hit a certain price point or make them a little more user-friendly for Joe Q. Public who doesn’t swing anything like or as hard as the pros.  One clue if this is the case is to look at the retail price between their stock shafts vs. after-market shafts.

Many OEM drivers will retail for $299 with their house brand shaft.  Let’s say the OEM uses a “premium” golf shaft you see in a component catalog that lists for $199 for just the golf shaft itself.  If the retail price of the club is $399, then you know it is the “Made For” version, whereas at $499, it is the real deal.

UST Recoil Golf Shaft

Abracadabra, watch me pull a shaft from this hat

There are some people who feel like there is a conspiracy theory and those that produce “Made For” shafts ought to go to the pokey for false advertising.  Others will say, “You know, the average guy probably can’t hit the real deal anyway and the retail version is probably going to be a better fit for them.”  The latter has basically a no harm, no foul approach.

But what if that “Made For” golf club shaft wasn’t even made by the company that originally designed the shaft and went through the arduous task of getting it in the hands of the world’s best players?  What if the name brand club manufacturer went to the shaft maker and said, “Hey, we want this other company to produce a shaft for us, but we would like to slap your name on it because it is good marketing.  We will pay you x-amount per golf shaft and you don’t have to manufacturer the shaft, have it sit in your warehouse until we put in a purchase order, worry about a late invoice or any returns either.  All you have to do is sit back and enjoy those royalty checks because your name is worth something to us and the general public.”

Shocked?  Believe it or not this practice does happen.  I actually applaud those shaft vendors that turn down the offer of “free” money not to tarnish their branding now and far into the future.  Do I have a grudge against any name brand club manufacturer – absolutely not!  Do I have a vendetta against any shaft manufacturer?  Again, my answer is emphatically no. For one, we sell the majority of these company’s products anyway and that pays part of my salary.  But I do feel I have a responsibility to help educate consumers and for them to understand we are not ripping them off when comparing the OEM vs aftermarket shafts.

Don’t get burned
If you want the real deal, well you are going to pay for it one way or another.  The tour grade golf shafts you find listed in Hireko’s catalog and website are indeed the Real McCoy’s – not a watered down or totally unrelated product to appear as the one you thought you were getting in the first place.  There are some name brand club manufacturers who will put the real thing in either as a premium stock offering or as a custom option, but at a premium price as well.  It’s the same story on those shafts you found on eBay for a terrific price as it is really hard to say what they are, where the came from or even who produced them.  Caveat emptor…