Spring-like Effect in Irons

Hi Frank,

I look forward each week for your insight about golf technology. It is great information.

In the December issue of Golf Digest (page 69), there is an article called “Flame Throwers”. The article describes new irons that make the ball go faster and farther. Specifically, the author talks about irons that have a trampoline effect (i.e. face flexing) similar to drivers.

Do you think this is hype or something that can really increase ball speed and make the golf ball fly farther? Is it something worth purchasing?

Thanks in advance for your valued opinion,


Thank you for your kind comments and we are pleased to help you better understand some of the advances in golf technology– if they really are — and other good and interesting “stuff”.

 Yes, it is possible to get the face of irons to flex in a similar manner to that of a driver face with spring like effect.

The wording in Appendix II 4-c of the Rules of Golf has been changed to allow a little bit of spring like effect and this modification from the original wording, which did not allow the face of a club to have any spring like effect,  now also applies to irons.

 For this to work the face must deform and recover during impact which lasts for about 0.000480 of a second. This means that the club head must be hollow and thus allow the face to move back and forth. You blink your eyes at speed of about 0.10 of a second which means while they are closed, you can have about 208 impacts of the club and ball.  That’s about 2 ½ rounds of golf — if you shoot 80 per round – in a blink of an eye.

This is one way to speed up play.

 While I am on this path of trivial information, I ask why you would want to hit the ball farther with your seven-iron if you have a six-iron in your bag. If we continue along this path, eventually we will do ourselves out of  all short irons because they are all hitting the ball too far. Then what will we do? Maybe reverse the process!!

Is this really an advance to help you play better or a marketing ploy to reduce the size of your wallet? Let us know what you think about irons that hit the ball farther by sharing your views below with other site visitors.

 Hope this helps



34 thoughts on “Spring-like Effect in Irons

  1. Spring effect, sounds to me like a transparent attempt to grab more money from gullible golfers who would get more benefit from a few lessons, proper club fitting, and some intelligent, purposeful practice. We all would benefit from more consistent ball striking such that we know (within reasonable limits) how far we hit each iron. Recently, I made the decision to drop down 1 club for my approach shots, e.g., if it looks like a wedge shot, use the 9 iron and swing within myself. Seems to work. Who cares if you can hit a wedge 150 yards? What is more important is hitting whatever club it takes to go that distance reliably and accurately.

  2. Wilson tried the slot in the irons in the late 70s or early 80s. It didn’t work. This won’t either. The only reason the TM irons hit the ball farther is that lofts have been jacked up again. Check the specs. The 4 iron loft is 20*! At the rate things are going people will carry a 7 irons and 7 “wedges”.
    By the way, I am 63 years old and hit a 7 iron 150 yards. Funny thing, 30 years ago I was hitting a 5 iron 150. My swing is better, but not that much better. You figure out why.

  3. the only thing springing-out will the money out of someone’s wallet; maybe, spend some more time on lessons, physical conditioning, or, practice, plus, moving up a tee or so; just a few comments from a senior player, who, also has lost a “few” yards due to age etc.Thank you for all your comments, CGG…

  4. This reminds me of an ad done years ago … it was for some gym
    “If great bodies came in a can, everyone would have one” Rachael McLish fomer Ms Olympia

  5. There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. Hogan hit all his shots “quail high” with a lot of backspin. The modern player hits towering rockets so he can stop the ball on hard greens (Nicklaus was the first to hit that high). I’ve spent 50 years building a stroke pattern (not a swing) that keeps the ball low with a lot of spin. Best way to play when the wind blows. So I have Wilson Fluid Feel irons (1-9) in my bag – shorter and heavier than modern irons. My Powerbilt Citation driver and 3-wood (persimmon with brass backweight) let me average 215 yards and 12/14 fairways hit, and I can hit the driver 205 off the deck, Altogether I usually hit 6-9 greens in regulation. Add a Wilson Sandy Andy (swingweight of F6) and a Armour blade putter, and I break 90 all the time. Not too shabby for a 72-year old.
    I spend very little at the pro shop, maybe a couple of dozen balls/year. Tees are free.
    The modern clubs hit the ball higher and, for me, carry shorter and stop faster. Spring-like effect? I just can’t get more than 75-mph out of a 45″ driver, so no.
    50 years ago I used a 7-iron from 150 (with a less-than-all-out effort), now it’s a 4-iron. That’s a loss of ~30 yards in 50 years, but I know, with 85% certainty, what I will get out of every club in the bag.
    If I had more talent, time, and inclination, I could probably get my handicap down a stroke or three. My lowest ever was 2. But I have a life outside of golf.
    Next year, if I’m alive, I’ll definitely hit the ball shorter. As Vonnegut wrote, so it goes. Half my golf buddies are dead or can’t walk the course, so I’ve been lucky that way.
    BTW, Here’s what I paid for my sticks – Woods (both of them) $20; Irons $100; Sandy Andy – I think it was $25, used, 30+ years ago; Putter (like new, Play It Again Sports) $11.43 including tax. All for about half the price of a Scotty Cameron Anser knockoff!

  6. I have been playing at the highest level, not in USA, for more than 50 years. When I ask young players will the #7 iron that I had in my first set go as far as the #7 iron today I get the answer “of course not, today’s clubs go much further.” I then pull out the said club and match it to today’s equivalent club which now has #9 stamped on it and everyone hits both, there is no difference in distance. QED

  7. i would like to see irons go back to the old lofts . the 9 iron was 46-48* and the pictching wedge was 52* [ or what you now call a gap wedge ] . then we will hit our irons higher !!

  8. I think there were irons with a “spring-like” effect slot about 20 years ago. I think they were from Wilson and had the slots filled with rubber. Do you remember these, Frank? Isn’t a springing face in an iron club against the equipment rules?

  9. great question… and I am with Frank on this one. I am not sure how hitting a club further makes it more accurate … my titleist blade/combo set is pretty much 10yds per club .. so dialing in the distance isn’t a problem … start putting 10-15 yards between each iron brings all sorts of problems and mental stuff ( no good for me anyway) … if you want more height and distance buy a hybrid with a low flex point on the shaft… well that’s what I did instead of carrying a 2 iron around.

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