One of the most popular shaft models on the PGA Tour over the past decade, the Graphite Design YS+ series, is getting an exciting makeover.
The venerable Graphite Design YS+ series of shafts, long known for its distinct feel, is now infused with the same high performance, Nano-alloy materials as their premium Tour AD shafts also known as “DI Technology”, to create the YS NanoReloaded. When I first heard of the name, the first thought that poured through my head was the movie Matrix Reloaded and in some way they tie together. You see graphite shafts are made of a matrix of different composite materials and epoxy resin. What make a shaft perform and give it the distinct feel is all about the materials along with its geometry.
YS+ versus YS Nano Reloaded
In a blog I did a few months ago called Serious Shafts for Serious Players, we went over the differences between the YS+ and some of the Tour AD models including our deflection profiles. Let’s now look at how the YS+ (in this case the 60 gram S-flex) compares to the new NanoReloaded.
As you can see in the deflection profiles, the two shafts are nearly identical from roughly the 15” position from the tip all the way to the butt. The blue line represents the YS6+ and the red line is the new NanoReloaded version. This should come as no surprise as Graphite Design used the exact same mandrel and materials pattern. The difference occurs in the tip region where the Nanomaterial used in the Tour AD series is positioned. This should produce a shaft that lowers the launch / spin slightly, but still provide the smooth center section that players have come to expect from the YS+ series.
Not your poor man’s Tour AD DI
If you think that by adding the same material in the tip as the Tour AD DI (orange line) that YS NanoReloaded (red line) will become a lower cost version of it, you might be let down. These are two different shaft profiles. If there was a shaft that would be more comparable it would be the Tour AD BB (light blue line). Here the dissimilarity is the YS NanoReloaded would have more flex than the Tour AD BB in the tip and mid sections.
While the YS6+ and YS7+ have been readily available for a decade, many might not remember Graphite Design made other weights in the series. For golfers looking to squeeze out more distance a lighter shaft might allow one to muster a little more speed at impact. The YS NanoReloaded Five (yes they spell out the number) is available in some of the softer flexes as well.
We have been working on a newer and better way of putting a number on stiffness to help fit golfers. Today I want to unveil what our swing speed range would be based on our deflection readings.
|Model / Flex
||Swing Speed Range
|YS-Five NanoReloaded L-flex
||64 – 73 mph
|YS-Five NanoReloaded A-flex
||75 – 86 mph
|YS-Five NanoReloaded R-flex
||81 – 94 mph
|YS-Five NanoReloaded S-flex
||90 – 103 mph
|YS-Six NanoReloaded R-flex
||86 – 99 mph
|YS-Six NanoReloaded S-flex
||93 – 107 mph
|YS-Six NanoReloaded X-flex
||103 – 118 mph
|YS-Seven NanoReloaded R-flex
||88 – 102 mph
|YS-Seven NanoReloaded S-flex
||96 – 110 mph
|YS-Seven NanoReloaded X-flex
||103 – 118 mph
Don’t forget the hybrids too
There is a 75 and 85 gram hybrid offering in this series as well. According to our testing, these will be more flexible or possess a lower frequency (added feel) than any of the other current Graphite Design hybrid shafts. That is with the exception of the very tip section where the Nanomaterial has been added (for stability).
What is the hottest shaft on tour? If you don’t happen to read industry press releases or visit golf equipment forums on the web it might be a shaft you haven’t heard of yet. That shaft is the Aldila Rogue and is built on Aldila’s ultra-successful new “tour” platform.
It uses the same tapered tooling and Nex Gen Micro-Laminate Technology that was utilized in Aldila’s Tour Green and Tour Blue. All of these models comprise of ultra-thin layers of premium, low resin aerospace grade materials.
Are they really using Unobtainium in the Aldila Rogue?
Maybe not, but Aldila is competing with the aerospace industry for use of a new advanced, rare and extremely expensive “Graphitic Carbon” material. On tour, the typical graphite fibers used in graphite shaft construction have a range in modulus of 33-55 million pounds per square inch (MSI). The Rouge incorporates material that is much stiffer. For instance, the Rogue Black uses 95 MSI material and the Rogue Silver 110 MSI. They also make a special Limited Edition – Made in USA version that uses 125 MSI materials.
What this allows is for Aldila’s engineers to create a shaft that is stiffer and lower torque without adding any additional weight. At the same time more material is positioned in the upper third of the shaft to help counterbalance the shaft, permitting for either a heavier head weight or for a longer assembly length without yielding an excessive swingweight. Those my friends are two factors that can help squeeze out more distance off the tee.
Now that same technology and performance will be available for sale to custom clubmakers and to the general public. We will be offering two versions of the Rouge. The Silver is the low-mid launching version like the Tour Green. It will be available in 60 and 70 gram weight options for woods. Then there is the mid-high launching Black. It will be available in weights of 60, 70 and 80 for woods as well as an 85 gram hybrid model.
Expanding the fitting spectrum: Green, Blue and now Red
Aldila’s Tour Green (mid-low launch) and the Tour Blue (mid launch) where released earlier this year and have been well received on tour plus as options in some popular name brand driver on the market. Now available is the new Tour Red utilizing the same high-end materials and tapered profile. The dissimilarity is the Tour Red is offered with a softer tip section to launch the ball higher than the Tour Blue. It will be available in a lighter weight 55 gram version as well as 65 and 75. Coming soon there will be a 75 gram matching hybrid shaft.
It is that time a year for manufacturers to start unveiling their 2015 product lines and our first company to do so is Lamkin grips. Here is a quick look at what you will soon be able to get your hands on.
2015 Lamkin UTx Wrap
The UTx line made its’ debut last year and was well received. Lamkin is now introducing a new offshoot version of it. Over the years I found there are two types of people out there. No, I am not referring to Democrats and Republicans, rather golfers that either prefers a smooth surface or the texture of a wrapped grip. Now the UTx family covers both. The new UTx Wrap will be available in standard and midsize in both black and a blue version (sorry no red like the standard UTx).
If you are not hip to the UTx performance advantage, here is a quick look. They offer their Tri-Layer technology which is essentially blending different materials for better results. These give you the traction of a corded grip without the harsh feel.
Speaking of Lamkin UTx, there is also a new jumbo putter model. Lamkin will introduce two other putter grips, but we will talk about those in a future blog.
Another new grip line to “wrap” your fingers around, the new 2015 Lamkin Wrap-Tech Grips
Lamkin has had a long line of followers with their Perma Wrap families over the years. With the departure of the Perma Wrap Ace with 3GEN after the inventory runs out, Lamkin will soon have the new family called the Wrap Tech. This differs from the Perma Wrap grips of the past as Lamkin engineers added a high-traction band between the grooves in the simulated wrapped pattern. So you get the tacky feel you have come accustomed to with the Perma Wrap grips of the past but with some extra traction.
These will be available in standard, midsize and oversize (jumbo) grip sizes, while the standard model will be available with 3 different accent colors to color coordinate with today’s most popular clubs.
If you think you are seeing double on our website in regards to many of your popular Lamkin grips, don’t worry. Lamkin is slowing changing over from the long-time script logo to their new one. You can get some good bargains now on some of the older logoed grips so act fast before they are gone. For clubmakers, you may want to look at your inventory and see if you might need some fill-in pieces so you can complete a set before they are all gone.
Well, that’s a wrap on the new 2015 grips from Lamkin.