Hooked On Golf Blog

KBS ShaftsI got the shaft, and I’m quite happy about it.  Specifically new shafts for my irons from KBS Shafts.  The shaft of choice for my “dual chicken wing granny over the top inside out massive weight shift face open overly steep” golf swing was the KBS Tour 90 version.

Why the KBS Tour 90 Shaft?

A look at my aforementioned swing description might give one clue as to the reason I went with the Tour 90’s.  Specifically there are two qualities in the KBS Tour 90’s which made them a good choice for my swing and shot type.  First, I’m not a bomber.   My swing speed, though clocked at 105MPH a couple of years ago, has gone down with age and shoulder injuries to around 90MPH.  The Tour 90 is well suited for moderate swing speeds.

KBS Tour 90 Shafts

KBS Tour 90 Shafts

The 2nd quality which makes the 90’s a match for my swing, is my shot trajectory.  I’m a low ball hitter.  The Tour 90 is well suited for players with a low trajectory.

Specs

The Tour 90’s are 21% lighter than standard steel shafts.  Lighter means the club can travel faster, easier. Faster = longer.

The iron shots have 5% less spin.  Read below how that translates to my game.

The irons will have 9% more distance.

The specs above are based on independent robotic tests and confirmed by player testing.

Tapered Tip Specs
Shaft Type Wt. Tip OD. Butt OD. Length* Torque Balance Point Ball Flight Frequency Finish
Regular 95g .355″ taper .600″ discrete 2.5 52% mid-high n/a Chrome
Stiff 102g .355″ taper .600″ discrete 2.3 52% mid-high n/a Chrome
Parallel Tip Specs
Shaft Type Wt. Tip OD. Butt OD. Length* Torque Balance Point Ball Flight PT Length Finish
Regular 101g .370″ parallel .600″ 41.25″ blank 2.5 52% see trim 12″ Chrome
Stiff 102g .370″ parallel .600″ 41.25″ blank 2.3 52% see trim 9″ Chrome

On The Course

I’m not big on specs or technical information.  What I want to know, is whether the ball goes where I’m trying to make it go. So does it?

Feel

The first difference I noticed, and one which is huge for me, is the FEEL.  I’m much more in tune with the contact with the Tour 90’s installed.  The clubs feel more buttery and I can tell right where the ball is hitting on the club face.

As precise as the feel is, there’s a very great benefit I discovered which was unexpected and very welcomed.  Ever hit a thin 4-iron in very low temps?  Don’t you love it when that shot makes all your fingers and forearm go numb for the next 10 minutes?  Since switching to the Tour 90’s this does NOT happen.  I’ve played some 20 rounds in temps in the 30’s and 40’s this past winter and NO shots I’ve hit have stung my fingers.  This is a big wow for me.

Accuracy

My greens in regulation for 2011 have been quite bad.  I miss a LOT of greens, despite being currently a 3 handicap.  I’ve been frustrated with my iron accuracy for a while.

With the new Tour 90’s installed, I’ve noticed a big increase in accuracy.  For the first time in what seems like forever, I’m seeing iron shots going straight AT the pin.  Ask anybody I regularly play with and they’ll tell you I’ve said this about 500 times now since I switched.  It is great to see the ball going at the pin.  This increase and accuracy and decrease in dispersion is directly related to the ball having less side spin.

Distance

As my testing started in the fall and has gone into the very cold winter months here in Utah, I can’t say I’ve noticed a difference in distance.  In fact, my yardages are exactly the same as the previous stock shafts.  I suspect that my technique is mostly to blame, but I could also blame the colder temps.  I won’t really know how much distance gain there is with these shafts until I’m able to play in warm temps.

KBS Tour 90 Shafts

Conclusion

I’m sold on the Tour 90’s for my swing.  The great feel and the increase in accuracy with my irons has made my game much more enjoyable this last couple of months.  I hope to be pleasantly surprised to find my distance come back this summer when the temps aren’t in the 30’s.

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