Talkin' Shafts

What's new in shaft technology


THE MEN OF STEEL SPEAK OUT

Steel shafts remain popular choices for many golfers, because of their lower price, performance consistency and, in many cases, because golfers are used to their feel. So we posed a couple of unique questions to a few steel manufacturers, as well.

GOLF TIPS: What advantages do lightweight steel shafts have over graphite?

TT/Grafalloy: Our GS steel shafts offer distance benefits historically found in graphite because they are made at the same weights (75, 85 and 95 grams). The true benefit is that they deliver much better trajectory control and shot consistency, which is the best of both worlds for someone who has traditionally played graphite shafts in their irons because of their lightweight properties.

FST: Aside from the cost factor and a more efficient way to lower torque, the main advantage of steel shafts is consistency from shaft to shaft. For example, steel shafts are manufactured from a single material that has multidirectional properties. Feel and flex curves can be determined and controlled by weight (or wall thickness) and diameters; on the other hand, graphite shafts use multiple materials in one shaft and are assembled at various angles, creating a bigger margin of error from shaft to shaft, which will affect feel and flexing characteristics
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Nippon: Steel shafts are in the irons of professional golfers, since they offer more performance consistency (vs. graphite) for better distance control, trajectory control and tighter shot dispersion. Steel shafts also provide more feedback.

GOLF TIPS: What have been the most significant changes to steel shafts in the past three years?

FST: There have been no significant changes; however, some new designs allowing golf professionals and skilled players more options in weight, balance point, and feel have been introduced, moving some top-tiered players away from the traditional perceived "better player" shafts.

Nippon: Lighter-weight steel shafts, even for irons. Also, top steel shaft companies are offering more models with different bending points, especially lower-bend-point models. This offers an option to use steel shafts, from game-improvement irons to blades.





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