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North Butte

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Everything posted by North Butte

  1. SALE COMPLETED Thanks to everyone who contacted me about the balls.
  2. Brand new, this year's model, low numbers, yellow Pro V1 balls. Three dozen. Price is $125 firm, shipped to you via USPS. No trades.
  3. Yes, that's the sort of thing I meant by "horse race" in my comments. It doesn't really matter which "horse" puts his nose across the line first. All I want is a list of the "horses" that were part of the photo finish.
  4. Am I correct in assuming that R10 won't know anything about gear effect? Or do you tell it you're hitting driver or fairway wood and it applies a fudge factor of some kind to approximate the gear effect?
  5. I definitely benefit (couple of strokes) from a big ol' SGI iron rather than a more player-ish one. Other than maybe a bit tougher time digging the ball out of the rough I'd say the only downside to the SGI irons is the once per round or so I come a little OTT and instead of just a pull I get these high pull-draw-hook monsters that can end up just miles offline and probably long as well. When I had AP2's and such I don't recall ever hitting that shot. Or not more than once in a blue moon anyway. But it is always waiting to bite me when my "hit" impulse takes over with the hot-faced, large-body irons I play now. On balance one disaster shot per round is easier to deal with than the steady drip-drip-drip of strokes wasted from mediocre contact resulting in anemic shots with the smaller clubs.
  6. I'm very UNcomfortable playing anything but a "stock" swing with an iron. But it's interesting, I end up with the same issue from an only slightly shorter distance when I'm between my shortest iron (46-degree AW goes flies about 108) and my longest wedge when I carried the 52-degree (about 92 yards). I could hit the 52-degree really hard with the face hooded a bit and maybe eke 95 or so out of it but for me that's just a stupid swing to be trying from anything other than a perfect lie. So if I had 100 yards there was no real choice but to hit the AW. Get the greens firm, a touch of breeze behind and my little choke down back in stance AW would end up flying 105 and taking a big bounce forward. Now I've got the 50-degree and can hit a 96, 97 yard shot without swinging hard. Even with a breeze behind it'll stop pretty quick.
  7. And if you spend way too much time transcribing their 8-iron numbers you'll see that the relative Total-Carry differences are just about always what you'd expect given the relevant spin and descent angle when comparing two balls.
  8. They aren't doing it quite as much as in the previous test IMO but they still tend to present the results as some sort of horse race where how a ball ranks in the distance metric is the main thing and all the other characteristics are add-ons. Or maybe I'm just overly sensitive and they aren't really exaggerating the distance horse race but that's how it seems to me. I didn't listen to their preliminary comments a couple weeks ago but they apparently teased something about the Tour Speed being a huge deal that would surprise everyone. All I see is it's near (but not at) the top for driver distance at high clubhead speeds. Treating 3-4 yards extra off the driver for big hitters compared to other popular models as a Stop The Presses headline material is really milking it IMO.
  9. For this spring and the early part of the summer I had a 46-degree AW as part of my iron set and then 52 and 58 degree wedges. The gap from 52 to 58 was no problem but over time I seemed to end up at what would be the perfect yardage for a 50-degree wedge like 3, 4, 5 times a round. It was unreal how often that was happening. In theory, no reason I couldn't have just invested a little range time and gotten good at taking 15 yards off my 46-degree AW. But I took the easy way out, got rid of the 52 and replaced it with a 50 and 54. Still, I get what he's doing. That's a pitching wedge, a sand wedge and a lob wedge. Nothing limiting about that if you have a good wedge game which Kisner certainly does.
  10. I think even though supposedly the general performance of golf balls is limited by USGA/R&A testing, in fact there have been gradual optimizations and exploitation of loopholes in the testing to gradually eke out a few more yards over the past decade or so. Not night and day differences but incremental improvements here and there. I doubt that applies to the K-Sig. It's no doubt a ball that can be produced with no major R&D using intellectual property that's not specifically owned and protected by the major OEM's. So I'd imagine whatever design it's based on hasn't really kept up with the latest and greatest ways of sneaking in a few more yards under the rules. The test results make it almost seem like a throwback to circa 2005 when there was still a tendency where playing a ball with gobs of spin necessarily meant compromising a bit on outright distance. By about 2012 to my perception that tradeoff no longer existed for the mainstream OEM balls. But K-Sig is kind of a 3pc time warp ball in that sense.
  11. Be careful. Yes, a properly struck wedge shot will come off the club at maybe 20 degrees or so lower than the loft of the wedge. That is not the issue. It's what can happen with a severely bad swing with a wedge that you have to account for. I don't think I'm unique but with almost any club you can name (not just LW) I am capable of hitting one out of every 50 or 100 balls over an 8' tall net that's 8' in front of me. And then there's the lateral issues (hosel rockets, toe-jams, several pulls) that can escape to the left or right of a net that far away. Be very careful.
  12. Let me say this, with the caveat that I'm a pretty low clubhead speed player (compared to their test results for "85mph" I hit my irons a tiny bit farther and my driver slightly shorter) and a 15-ish handicap... The Chrome Soft has never suited me quite right even though I did play one of the earlier generations for a year or so. Flight seemed kind of flat and green holding power seemed borderline. I also kind of thought that earlier version I played was a bit disappointing in driver distance. I played just a few holes with CXS-LS alongside the Chrome Soft X (as in hitting all shots with both balls) and didn't bother with the LS for any longer. It just didn't perform at all for me. But the Chrome Soft X and I just immediately hit it off. It's just as long as a Pro V1 or Pro V1x, nice high flight (by my low-hitter standards) and it had none of the ball releasing too much issues or the occasional "10 yards longer" hot iron shots that I had experienced with regular Chrome Soft. When I look at the 85mph test results it does seem a bit unique, although actually two of the balls most similar to it are Pro V1 and Pro V1x both of which I've played a lot and liked. Give it a try.
  13. I think aerodynamic performance is very, very good nowadays on even the cheapest white-label Asian factory knockoff ball. But I do think there are still differences that matter in the dimple designs of various models. But aero performance is a second-order type thing that only really comes into consideration after you've found a ball that suits in terms of ball speed and spin with various clubs. A ball that's slow off the club or doesn't spin enough (or spins too much) for me isn't going to be bailed out by having better dimples. But among balls that are otherwise similar, I do perceive some subtle differences in ball flight from the "aero package". I also think the whole aerodynamic thing becomes a bigger issue for players with the ability to choose and control their trajectory with all their clubs. Moreso than duffers like me who just want to hit a decent shot as often as possible and who don't/can't consciously "flight" the ball.
  14. Feel free to rant. But I'm pretty sure even as a terribly inconsistent golfer that if I'd been playing a certain ball for months and I switched to one that was 5-10 yards shorter (or longer) then after 20 or 30 rounds I'd be getting a pretty strong inkling that something had changed. I play 150+ times a year on the same course I've been playing for decades. My swing is horribly variable from swing to swing and day to day but it doesn't change massively over time. So when I hit a shot solidly I have a pretty darned good idea where it's going to end up, unless it gets a bad bounce or there's a lot of wind or something. Would I swear in court that Ball A was 6.85 yards shorter than Ball B after I compared them? Of course not. Could I be fooled into thinking Ball A was shorter than Ball B over a period of a few rounds due to variation in my swing? Absolutely. But in the long run I sure as hell am not going to play a ball that's 5-10 yards shorter than usual unless there's a mighty big advantage to the ball otherwise to make up for the lost distance. And as I've commented above, when I look at this sort of test on balls I've played dozens or hundreds of rounds with the test results are spookily concurrent with my own subjective (long term) impressions.
  15. Postscript to my comments above... I just realized I can substract the Carry distance from Total distance for 8-iron to get an idea of stopping power. It's kind of amazing that just through random trial and error I settled on Chrome Soft X where the rollout (85mph equiv.) was about 15 yards which is one of the quickest stopping balls on the list. The balls I'd played previously are Pro V1 and Pro V1x and they're around 16 yards. Still quicker stopping than most. And the Chrome Soft (not X) that I tried and thought didn't hold greens well enough comes in at nearly 18 yards rollout with their test 8-iron setup. AVX is similar with just over 18 yards rollout I know we're talking about stopping maybe 8 feet quicker with an 8-iron, less than a 20% difference. Not the end of the world if every shot rolls out that little bit extra. But I'll be darned if, with no launch monitor, I didn't eventually end up liking balls that stop quicker than average and being disappointed with the ones that don't.
  16. My own wish list for a ball is distance (of course) along with stopping power on irons and spin on wedges. My idea of "distance" in these test results would be total distance off the driver plus carry distance off 8-iron at the 85mph "slow" speed. Unless I overlooked something I think the AVX was the best by that metric 236.10+125.47=361.57 total. The ball I'm currently playing is Chrome Soft X and the numbers are 230.60+123.10=353.70 total. That almost exactly matches my memory of playing AVX in the past (the original version) which rolled about 10 extra yards off the driver but had driver and iron carry distances pretty much like other urethane balls. Off the 8-iron Chrome Soft X has 5,805spin and 36.45 descent angle which is in the upper echelons for stopping power. That's about 200rpm less spin than the KIRKLAND and within half a degree of descent angle of the steepest-landing balls in the test. Wedge spin is 7,601rpm again toward the top of the list and only a couple hundred rpm less than the highest wedge spin balls. If I wanted to switch to AVX in hopes of getting that extra distance (in theory I'd be nearly able to hit one less club into greens on average) I'd have to give up some wedge spin (7,155 instead of 7,601) but a pretty good bit of stopping power. The 8-iron spin of AVX is 400rpm less and the descent angle is 35.34 instead of 36.45 so that combination could possible lead to a bit more release. I do think the current AVX seems to fly higher and possibly stop better than the original version but I'm not tempted. Mostly because the increase in distance is almost entirely rollout with the driver which is unreliable in my experience (it depends on the ball staying the fairway and the fairway being firm). P.S. Tour Speed, which apparently was being hyped ahead of time as a big surprise, certainly isn't any big deal at the 85mph "slow" speed. Compared to the AVX it is pretty much inferior for slow swingers. My distance metric for Tour Speed is 233.81+124.10=357.91 total or about 3-1/2 yards shorter than AVX. The 8-iron spin is 5,502 (vs. 5,393 for AVX), descent angle is 35.58 (vs. 35.34 for AVX) and wedge spin is a paltry 6,620rpm (vs. 7,155 for AVX).
  17. Yeah, I actually bought a sleeve of them and on a basic 30-40 yard pitch with a sand wedge it makes me look like I know how to spin the ball. Which I actually don't. Overall I felt like they were actually spinning more than I want. Which is extremely unusual. Normally I say there's no such thing as too much spin.
  18. I only own one fairway wood, it's an 18-degree Taylormade M6. I don't have nearly enough clubhead speed to need any lower lofted club off the deck (I swing a driver at maybe 88-89mph) and I've not found a 7-wood I liked better than a long iron or hybrid. So it's driver (210 yards), then 5-wood (190 yards) then either a 4-hybrid (175 yards) or just skip the hybrid and go straight to the 5-iron (165 yards).
  19. That's very true. I just prefer to start from the commercially available off the shelf solution first before trying to figure out a way to heavily modify a different club. If for no other reason, I can buy a 40" long hybrid and return it or sell it on if it doesn't work out. Not as easy to do with a fairway wood that I've shortened. But I realize I'm very much a "standard" type golfer. Average height, average build, average strength, middle-aged, mid-teens handicap. So naturally the stock dimensions and specs on a lot of clubs are pretty close to what I need. In fact I can always find something that works among off-the-shelf offerings. Might not be so easy if I had unusual proportions or a weird swing in some way...my swing is bad but bad in very conventional ways ;-)
  20. I'm maybe just a bit beyond the "slow" range of clubhead speed but not much so that's the category I looked at in detail. My most recent ball switch was from 2021 Pro V1 to 2020 Chrome Soft X. I was pretty sure I liked the Chrome Soft X better but it wasn't any sort of night and day difference. Sure enough, looking at their results in almost every characteristic they are virtually the same. But what little differences exist between them (like a bit more spin) favor the Chrome Soft X for my needs. So it confirms my subjective impressions after 50-60 rounds with each. P.S. I found a source for a batch of 2020 Chrome Soft X at about half what the Pro V1's cost me so that made the decision much easier for the moment at least!
  21. Keeping the ball in play is the most important part of the game. On most courses for most golfers the driver is the club with the greatest potential for hitting the ball somewhere that entails a penalty stroke or a recovery shot that costs nearly a full stroke. So in that sense yes, driving is the most crucial thing for many golfers.
  22. I checked Yes but with a big asterisk on "consistently". But my putting is better than most people I've played golf with while the rest of my game is a good bit worse than most people I've played with. So I'm certainly a "very good" putter relative to the rest of my game. I almost always put a good roll on the ball. My putting shortcomings are getting twitchy on 2-3 footers and not being the best at reading greens when playing away from my home course. I think I make about as many putts from outside 6 feet as anyone who isn't a scratch or better golfer. In Strokes Gained: Putting terms I'm about three strokes worse than Tour average.
  23. A good friend of mine has been playing nothing but the 3pc K-Sigs for a couple years now and he's a big fan. Doesn't lose many balls so he's not buying on price. The extra spin is the big selling feature for him. I've thought all along that I noticed an overnight loss of distance as soon as he switched to the K-Sig. I can't put a number on it but with the K-Sig he seemed to me to be hitting at least two clubs longer into Par 4's than I remembered him hitting a few months earlier. Early on I asked if he thought they were costing him any distance and he blamed it entirely on some health issues and orthopedic problems he was going through. Which was convincing enough for me, he knows his own game much better than I do. But it's always stuck in the back on my mind. We play together enough, always at the same course, that I know which holes are driver/7-iron and which are driver/5-wood for him and that changed almost overnight. Having seen those results, I am now 99% convinced it was a ball thing and not that his swing suddenly had a power failure 24-30 months ago. Not sure I'll mention this test to him or not but I might...
  24. In my case a few years back I compared a 21-degree 7-wood that was shortened to 40" (I think it was a Ping G-something) and had a bunch of lead tape on the sole to a 21-degree 3-hybrid (Callaway Razr X Tour) that was the same length. For my own swing, the 7-wood went from being a club that worked pretty well at normal length to feeling heavy and clunky and losing a lot of my ability to get the ball up really high like I'd expect a 7-wood to do. So the shortening/reweighting was a bad move on that club. But the 21-degree hybrid worked really well straight out of the box. Not sure about lie angles but the length and weight of the hybrid vs. shortened 7-wood were almost identical and the shaft flex felt much the same during the swing. But I hit the hybrid straighter and more consistently and even (I thought) slightly higher. I've had similar experienced taking a 40" or so hybrid and knocking it down an inch and a half. It just does not seem to work as well as a typical SGI iron of the same loft and similar length. Just my own experiences. For me, I just stick pretty close to the OEM length of each type club (iron, hybrid, fairway) because experimenting to any great extent with length and weight just literally never worked out to produce a usable club.
  25. At some point it becomes an issue (to me at least) whether the shorter shaft buys you more control or consistency than all that added weight costs. Even if you can somehow get the balance good enough there's a lot of difference in how I swing a 370g club versus a 340g one. My own thinking (based on hacking up and reweighting my own clubs over the years) is once you get to more than about an inch or inch and a half of length-shortening you might be better off just starting with a club that's designed to be shorter. An ultra-short hybrid might not work as well as an iron and an ultra-short fairway wood might not work as well as a hybrid.
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