Golf Clubs and Golf Technology
Mike's Questions about Driving Distance
Stachura asked me two questions about driving distance. He wanted to
know (1) how many yards of driving distance you get for every mile per hour
of clubhead speed, and (2) how many extra yards of driving distance
could an average golfer pick up without increasing clubhead speed.
Here's my shot at the answers.
Driver Head Weight and Club Length
We take a look at how headweight affects driving distance. In
particular, we examine how much of an advantage we can get from a
maximum-legal-length driver. The answer is: probably less than you've
been led to believe by advocates, but enough to be worth the effort.
The extra distance comes with a price, which you may or may not be
willing to pay.
is my latest (2016) take on single-length iron sets. I restructured the
article, starting with the prinicples of single-length clubs and
finishing with a separate page of simulation studies of products on the
market. Included is a discussion of the yardage gaps for a set of
irons, a crucial consideration for both single-length and conventional
Placement of Center of Gravity for Best Spin and Launch Angle
The work I have done analyzing vertical gear effect tells the golfer
where to hit the ball on the clubface for maximum distance. But it
doesn't tell the club designer where to place the Center of Gravity
(CG) of the clubhead, to make it as easy as possible for the golfer to
hit the ball on a favorable clubface spot. This article addresses that
question, as well as how CG location figures into custom fitting the
Experience with MOI Matching
In the first half of 1995, I was experimenting with MOI matched clubs.
This was based on math and physics I did in 1994 suggesting this would
be a better way to match clubs than swingweight. I posted my
experiences to rec.sport.golf, the golfing
interest newsgroup on the Internet. Here is an anthology of those
Recent MOI-Matching Experience
took thirteen years and several tries, but I think I now know what sort
of MOI-matched clubs I need. Here is the what and why of a set that
fits me better than my earlier attempts at playing MOI-matched irons.
MOI Matching -- But Which Axis?
challenge the usual assumption that MOI matching should be done using
the butt of the club as the axis for moment of inertia. Here are the
likely axes one might use, why the butt of the club is the one we do
use, and a formula so you can transform the axis if you want to try a
Technology Forecast - 2008
2008, motivated by a forecast made by Tom Wishon at the fifth World
Congress of Golf, I prepared a five-year technology forecast. I decided
to use as a ground rule Tom's conclusion that much of the progress
would be in the area
of custom club fitting. Here is my cut at it.
This article is a companion to a technology forecast
I made in 2008. Technology forecasting itself is a
"vocational skill", which involves being able to apply some
well-understood principles. Here are some of the ways a professional
Thoughts on Putter Anchoring
The hottest topic in golf equipment right now (March 2013) is the
proposed ban on anchoring the putter -- essentially a ban on long
putters. I haven't done any detailed studies on this, but obviously
have some opinions on whether it makes a difference. I feel it does
give an advantage, and here are the reasons for that opinion.
for Clubmaking Components
am frequently asked who I buy from -- or who I'd recommend -- for
clubmaking components and supplies. Here is an annotated list of
suppliers I have dealt with, so I don't have to compose the answer every
Irons Can Be More Forgiving than Rigid-face Irons
drivers, irons are not about maximum distance, but rather reliable,
predictable distance. I felt that high-COR irons worked against this
principle because the COR falls off away from the center, adding to the
losses from an off-center impact. Tom Wishon proved me wrong. Here's
the real story.
Why hosel coning is important
casual round at an executive course turned into a demonstration of why
it is important to ream a "cone" at the top of your hosel if you are
building clubs with graphite shafts. Here's why it's important.
Square Groove Controversy
In the late 1980s and early '90s, it was widely -- and incorrectly --
believed that square grooves were illegal. Here's how that rumor came
about, and what really
Distance, or A Myth is Not As Good As A Mile
This was inspired by a debate about whether a super-hard clubface
material will give more distance. It was first written before
spring-face drivers and coefficient of restitution was an issue, but it
gives some hints that a hard face is not the way to get more distance;
a face that flexes is.
In July of 2005, a discussion started on the FGI forum about matching
sets of golf clubs based on the centripetal force trying to pull the
clubs out of the golfers' hands. They had the analysis and measurement
all wrong, so I
wrote this article on how it really works -- and found out that it
really doesn't. I don't think this article will ever be a classic, but
good study in how to see whether a proposal for improving golf club
design has any merit.