I have been seeing some advertizing about the shifting of weight around the head and moving the center of gravity closer to the face. The claim is that this is going to give me more distance. I also note that the lofts of drivers are now being offered as high as 16 degrees. I would like your insights please.
If you are one of our Frankly Friends you will have read many times how I have been promoting a shorter driver with more loft for the golfer who is looking for a little more distance and greater accuracy. This concept seems to have taken root with the 14- and 16-degree lofted drivers now being promoted with a 43 + inch shaft length.
At last we are seeing a return to some sense in driver design for the average golfer, and getting away from the snakebite-kit-47-inch drivers. The public will eventually recognize that life is a compromise and we can’t get more distance for free, we have the choice between more consistent drives or longer wild ones. However, I am not convinced that sliding weights around is going to cure your swing flaws.
One of the most successful drivers introduced in the 1990’s was the 270 cc head 44.5-inches long and 10.5 degree 975D, however even this did not have enough loft for the average golfer.
We now see a return to a “miniature” 260cc driver with up to 16- degrees of loft. For your information if you are inclined to throw your driver into a lake and then regret it, a 260-270 cc driver will JUST float, so it may wash up a few days later, once you have calmed down. This is more important for the longer, bigger headed drivers which are thrown more often. These will float higher in the water, and will be more visible for quicker recovery.
Will this miniature driver – almost standard in 1998 — give more distance to the average golfer, than the present driver in his bag?
If his present driver is 46 inches long and has 10-degrees of loft and a 460 cc head, the answer is, probably YES.
The reason for this YES answer, is that the average golfer generates about 85 mph club head speed and needs to launch the ball higher than the touring pro. Because he is hitting the sweet spot more often with a shorter shaft, and with a higher loft he will be getting close to the optimum launch conditions for his head speed of 85 mph and a ball speed of about 120 mph.
Butch, if you are looking for more distance – the war cry of every marketing department in golf equipment industry – then I would suggest that you get a lesson but if you insist on buying another driver, the miniature versions now being introduced – coming back to common sense in driver design — are not a bad choice.
Good luck and let me know how it works out.