Choosing a Shaft for a 5 Wood - Weight / Flex Variations

SizzFractorSizzFractor So. CalMembers Posts: 7 ✭✭

Hey Guys,
Sorry if this might be too complicated of a question but I recently got my Driver set up dialed in and now I am looking to get my 5 wood settled. Ive been researching shafts and have it narrowed down to a few but I am having trouble figuring out which aspect to focus on most between weight and flex when a particular shaft is made is a plethora of different weight options. Its hard to find all the shafts and weight options in stock at any particular fitter so I typically like to order my shafts and try them myself and sell the ones that didnt make the cut.

Currently my driver is a PXG 0811x Gen 2 9* with a Tensei CK Pro White 70s (73G) . From what I understand my wood shaft should be about 10G heavier. Im guessing wood shafts are just trimmed to fit, so how much does the shaft weight become reduced from Driver weight to 5 wood weight?

For example Oban Kiyoshi Purple comes in 75 and 85 and the actual weights are 79G and 85G respectively so is it safe to assume that If I want the right weight gap I should get the higher weight knowing the total mass will be reduced by the trimming?

The weight difference can be even less when you compare an X flex to the S flex of the next highest weight. Do you find that sometimes the Flex doesnt matter if the weight is right?

Thanks in advance for the insight!!!

PXG 0811X Gen2 9* / Tensei CK Pro White 70S
Callaway Apex 5-PW / Catalyst 100 6.0
Miura 51* / 55* / 59* Wedges / DG x100

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  • Stuart_GStuart_G New HampshireMembers Posts: 23,536 ✭✭

    Generally for most weight is more important than the stiffness profile. Generally it's recommended to be roughly 5 gm heavier for each inch that it's shorter - so actual playing lengths for both driver and the fairways will influence the weights to focus on. BUT - that's just a starting place in the fitting process - actual testing is needed to validate for each individual.

    How much flex matters depends on the individual and their swing and the general stiffness profile. Lots of factors and different individuals will have different levels of sensitivities. But first of all, it's important to understand that there are no standards for flex - so what the labels say (stiff, x-stiff, regular, etc..) are really pretty meaningless when comparing different models and makes of shafts. Second some shaft models the stiffness will stay pretty similar when the weight goes up (e.g. 60, 70, and 80 gm versions of a model might all have very similar stiffness profiles) - while other models, the stiffness can change significantly as the weight changes. It all comes down to how the shaft designer choose to do for the different weight models. So you can't really generalize or make assumptions about how weight and stiffness correlate to each other.

    But back to the question of how important the stiffness is - it's all about how comfortable the person is with how the shaft loading and unloading feels to them. Some can play a wide range of shaft stiffness with no adverse effects or even much differences in the results. Some other need to play not just the right flex - but the a very specific profile in order to get good consistent results. Most are somewhere between those two extremes.

    Unfortunately, there are no short cuts. The only way to tell where you stand is to go out and demo various profiles and options and see what happens to the feel and results. Sometimes past experiences can help those knowledgeable about the options available guide that process (which is really exactly what a fitting is).

  • SizzFractorSizzFractor So. CalMembers Posts: 7 ✭✭

    @Stuart_G said:
    Generally for most weight is more important than the stiffness profile. Generally it's recommended to be roughly 5 gm heavier for each inch that it's shorter - so actual playing lengths for both driver and the fairways will influence the weights to focus on. BUT - that's just a starting place in the fitting process - actual testing is needed to validate for each individual.

    How much flex matters depends on the individual and their swing and the general stiffness profile. Lots of factors and different individuals will have different levels of sensitivities. But first of all, it's important to understand that there are no standards for flex - so what the labels say (stiff, x-stiff, regular, etc..) are really pretty meaningless when comparing different models and makes of shafts. Second some shaft models the stiffness will stay pretty similar when the weight goes up (e.g. 60, 70, and 80 gm versions of a model might all have very similar stiffness profiles) - while other models, the stiffness can change significantly as the weight changes. It all comes down to how the shaft designer choose to do for the different weight models. So you can't really generalize or make assumptions about how weight and stiffness correlate to each other.

    But back to the question of how important the stiffness is - it's all about how comfortable the person is with how the shaft loading and unloading feels to them. Some can play a wide range of shaft stiffness with no adverse effects or even much differences in the results. Some other need to play not just the right flex - but the a very specific profile in order to get good consistent results. Most are somewhere between those two extremes.

    Unfortunately, there are no short cuts. The only way to tell where you stand is to go out and demo various profiles and options and see what happens to the feel and results. Sometimes past experiences can help those knowledgeable about the options available guide that process (which is really exactly what a fitting is).

    Wow! Thanks for the super informative reply. I think what you've said makes perfect sense. It can be frustrating though when youre really interested harder to find or expensive shafts that fitters may not carry, so I was trying to find, as you put it an effective shortcut but I think its clear that would be impossible. I think ill try to find a fitter that has as many of the options im looking to try and then try to bring my own of the others that they dont to bridge the gap.

    PXG 0811X Gen2 9* / Tensei CK Pro White 70S
    Callaway Apex 5-PW / Catalyst 100 6.0
    Miura 51* / 55* / 59* Wedges / DG x100

  • Stuart_GStuart_G New HampshireMembers Posts: 23,536 ✭✭

    No problem.

    when youre really interested harder to find or expensive shafts that fitters may not carry

    Just realize - there is also no correlation between price and performance. So don't go looking for expensive shafts JUST because they are expensive. For every expensive shaft, there is usually another less expensive shaft from a different company or different model that has very similar characteristics and would perform just as well for most ams.

    here is a good read:
    http://www.golfwrx.com/6419/tom-wishon-talking-to-wrx-readers-10-myths-about-shafts-factual-info-about-shafts-to-help-you-all/

  • Howard JonesHoward Jones Members Posts: 8,875 ✭✭
    edited Jul 13, 2019 9:57am #5

    @SizzFractor said:

    @Stuart_G said:
    Generally for most weight is more important than the stiffness profile. Generally it's recommended to be roughly 5 gm heavier for each inch that it's shorter - so actual playing lengths for both driver and the fairways will influence the weights to focus on. BUT - that's just a starting place in the fitting process - actual testing is needed to validate for each individual.

    How much flex matters depends on the individual and their swing and the general stiffness profile. Lots of factors and different individuals will have different levels of sensitivities. But first of all, it's important to understand that there are no standards for flex - so what the labels say (stiff, x-stiff, regular, etc..) are really pretty meaningless when comparing different models and makes of shafts. Second some shaft models the stiffness will stay pretty similar when the weight goes up (e.g. 60, 70, and 80 gm versions of a model might all have very similar stiffness profiles) - while other models, the stiffness can change significantly as the weight changes. It all comes down to how the shaft designer choose to do for the different weight models. So you can't really generalize or make assumptions about how weight and stiffness correlate to each other.

    But back to the question of how important the stiffness is - it's all about how comfortable the person is with how the shaft loading and unloading feels to them. Some can play a wide range of shaft stiffness with no adverse effects or even much differences in the results. Some other need to play not just the right flex - but the a very specific profile in order to get good consistent results. Most are somewhere between those two extremes.

    Unfortunately, there are no short cuts. The only way to tell where you stand is to go out and demo various profiles and options and see what happens to the feel and results. Sometimes past experiences can help those knowledgeable about the options available guide that process (which is really exactly what a fitting is).

    Wow! Thanks for the super informative reply. I think what you've said makes perfect sense. It can be frustrating though when youre really interested harder to find or expensive shafts that fitters may not carry, so I was trying to find, as you put it an effective shortcut but I think its clear that would be impossible. I think ill try to find a fitter that has as many of the options im looking to try and then try to bring my own of the others that they dont to bridge the gap.

    Stuart is spot on, the only thing there exist a shorty cut for is a starting point for testing when we talk both weight and flex, and this chart that ive made could be used for Shaft weight.

    If you have a club in your bag, no matter what club that is, (driver to iron), and we want a starting point for testing for a wood or hybrid as example, we start by finding the club in our bag that simply "just feels right" on weight.

    Now find that SHAFTs UNCUT weight, and look into this chart. Never mind the labels for 2W or 3W, its PLAY LENGTH thats important here, so when you have found "your favorite clubs" length and shaft weight, the suggested stating point for testing of the new club is to be found in the same row. You will most likely find the shaft that feels right within plus minus 5 grams (one row to the left or right), but no rules is without exceptions, so all you get is really a good starting point for testing.

    A subject Stuart forgot to mention is the shafts Balance point, and today we have lots of variable here, so if we compare 2 shafts like Grafalloy PL RED with PL RED Supercharged, they look equal on the paper, both mid 60 grams, but feel of weight is not the same since the Supercharged model is very light in the tip side, and very heavy at the butt side, and thats makes a large difference to both feel of shaft weight AND head weight, since the shaft has a certain influence on head weight.

    If we only navigate between shafts where balance point is about the same, the rule of thumb with 5 grams progression pr inch both ways is a good one.

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