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Mid Hanidicappers: Don't Fear The Low Bounce Wedge


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We've all heard the dire prognostications about playing a low bounce wedge. The lack of forgiveness seems to be the the consensus of why a good but not great golfer might chose not to play one. I drank the Kool-Aid and played a mid bounce lob wedge for three years.  I played the Mizuno T7 60 degree stock which I'm pretty sure was ten degrees, though the internet is not giving up that information after a few minutes of searching. The Blue Ion finish was fun and got a lot of looks and started some conversations but it was not the reason I played it... someone gave it to me and that was that. I played the best bunker game of my life with it but it wasn't my favorite club around the greens. The wear pattern on the blue finish started to show that I dig the heel of that club more that the toe and I had the realization that most of the grinds on  lower bounce wedges favor relief on the heel side. 

 

Enter the Sub70 JB wedge, after a few looks at the website I was hooked. It's beyond beautiful, my pick for most underrated wedge of the year.  Ordered one and they didn't have my shaft option and got a free upgrade and man, pure beauty.  I digress, the big change was the work around the greens. The lower bounce (58 degree, 6 bounce) gives me so much more confidence on greenside shots and tight bunker shots that need spin. If you are reluctant to give up the comfort of the high bounce then make your sand club twelve bounce or higher.  If you have trouble breaking 80 and hit full lob wedges on the regular than you are a much better golfer than I. I see no downside to to 10-15 handicap player keeping the low bounce wedge in the conversation.

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I have a 60.04 L Vokey and it is the easiest specialty wedge I've ever hit

I would say bounce has nothing to do with skill level, just how you hit it or what method you use. Ball position, AOA

Depends on two things: Your course conditions (lower bounce generally helps on hard turf and firm sand), and your short-game tactics.   The traditional approach is leading edge (LE) contact,

I have a 60.04 L Vokey and it is the easiest specialty wedge I've ever hit

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Driver:  Mizuno ST 180 11.5u* w PROformance 65g X Shaft

Fairway Wood: 2014 Adams Tight Lies 14* w PROformance 80g X Shaft tipped 1 inch
Irons:   Ping Rapture 2 iron w Ping CFS Soft Stepped Stiff Shaft
             Tommy Armour Silver Scot Blades 4-9 w AWT 2.0 X Shaft                      
Wedges:  Vokey SM6 - 46*, 52*, 56*   SM7 - 60* w AWT 2.0 X and AWT 2.0 Wedge Flex shafts

Grips:   Karma Velvet 360 Standard +1 wrap
Putter:  Bastain Milled Fusion Golf Prototype 1 of 1 Flow Neck w Custom DTG Smoke Shaft @ 33.75" w Super Stroke Flatso 1.0
Ball:  Kirkland Signature V3.2

Bag: 2020 Ping Hoofer Lite

Glove: MG DynaGrip Elite

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all my wedges are 8* or lower. Been using low/mid-low bounce since i started playing. 

Mid/High bounce wedges just don't work on the firm North Texas ground...

 

CP

SIM2 Max9*   Atmos TS Black 60X
Epic Flash (16*) Hazardous Green 80X
910H 20*   NV 2KXV Blue 90X
Miura MB001 4-PW KBS Tour X +1/2"
SM6 52 F Grind, 56 & 60 M Grind
EvnRoll ER5B

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Bounce is your friend in bunkers and in softer conditions.  It also matters if you're a picker or not.  For me, I want a high loft, high bounce club for sand work.  For firm greenside chips I'm using a lower bounce 52° to pick it cleanly with.  It's definitely something worth playing around with.  I recommend grabbing various used wedges to find what works for you, then getting a set with fresh grooves.   

G410 10.5 Tensei Orange S - SIM2 HL 3W VENTUS BLUE 6 S - Titleist 915 2H Red Board S - Mizuno MP 20 Proj X IO 6.0 - Clev 588 Forged Wedges - Rossie White Hot (Circa ~2002...I forget)

Indocti discant et ament meminisse periti

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Agree that the low bounce Sub70 JB wedge performs!  Really enjoying it. I have a higher bounce 54* so am set for different shot needs.  

SIM2 Autoflex 505
Epic 15*
Sub70 3 hybrid
Sub70 5 hybrid

Sub70 6 hybrid
Apex 21 irons  6-gap 
54* SM8
Sub70 JB low bounce 58*
PXG Operator H

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I'm glad I'm not the only one who has had this experience, thanks for sharing. Why do all the instruction/equipment gurus out there push this narrative that low bounce wedges are only for low handicap players when at least in this conversation seems not to be at all what happens on the course? Some good points made that it's different for everyone but I don't like the fact that we're supposed to exclude a whole category of clubs based on our skill level. Test and verify, share with your fellow addicts, play well everyone, see you out there.

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I'm looking at replacing wedges to go along with the irons that I've got on order and should be built next week. 

 

Right now I'm using the set SW which is relatively low bounce for most of my shots around the greens, and I had picked up a Ping Glide 3.0 wedge in 60/14 because I'd always wanted a lob wedge.

 

Problem is that with that level of bounce, playing on scrub grass over hardpan on a typical SoCal muni, is that the ground doesn't yield to the bottom of the club AT ALL. So I'm almost just bouncing the blade into the middle of the ball. 

 

I've basically gone to using the SW as my "around the green" club and the 60/14 only when I'm in fluffy sand or a fluffy lie in the rough. I find it useless on tight lies.

 

 I'm planning on going 52/10 and 56/12 in the Sub70 286 wedges, and then 60LB (60/6) in the JB wedge. The 52/10 should end up being my typical around the green club, my 56/12 the primary sand club, and that 60/6 being that club when I really need the loft but low bounce enough that I can comfortably use it off the tight lies. 

 

Mid-high bounce might work in certain course conditions, but not on the courses I play. 

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Ping G25 10.5* w/ Diamana 'ahina 70 x5ct stiff (set -0.5 to 10*)

Toski 4w 16* w/ DG S300

Wishon EQ1-NX 4h, 5i-GW single-length built to 37.5" w/ Nippon Modus3 120 stiff

Sub70 286 52/10, 286 56/12, and JB 60/6 wedges, black, built to 36.75" w/ Nippon Modus3 120 stiff

Odyssey White Hot XG #1 w/ SuperStroke jumbo

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Learning to use clubs with different bounce is not hard, but it does take a bit of practice - preferably with a bit of guidance from somebody who knows how to do it so you get off to the correct start.

 

Hitting a low bounce wedge shouldn't be too difficult. And it can be super useful in many conditions. Tight lies, hard/thin sand in bunkers, etc... 

 

My three wedges are 52/8, 56/14, and 60/4. The bounce variety is as useful to me as are the lofts. 

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23 hours ago, Brons said:

I see no downside to to 10-15 handicap player keeping the low bounce wedge in the conversation.

 Depends on two things: Your course conditions (lower bounce generally helps on hard turf and firm sand), and your short-game tactics.

 

The traditional approach is leading edge (LE) contact, in which the player hits down on the ball with idea of taking a divot in front of the ball. This is tough to do without a lot of practice and touch. The leading edge beaver pelt crew ends up with a half wedge or chip shot that is either good or bad. Bad = chunk or bullet. Too much "hit down" can also deloft the club more than needed.

 

The past decade many golfers have gone to an "engage the bounce" (ETB) routine for their short game. ETB relies on higher bounce wedges, with the player skimming the sole along the ground.

ETB promises a margin of error. The player sets up with minimal forward shaft lean. If the golfer hits the shot a bit fat, the shot doesn't carry as far in air, and runs out more because it has less spin. If the golfer picks the shot clean, it travels farther in the air, but bites sooner.

 

The way to tell which wedge bounce is best is to do a side-by-side comparison. What works for you?

_______________________

 

Note from Maltby. GolfWorks founder and club designer Ralph Maltby recommends keeping options in bounce. If your ideal bounce is high, you might keep a low-bounce LW for shots when high-B is not needed. If your ideal bounce is low, you might to with a 12-bounce SW so you have some shot options (as per @Bronssuggestion above).

 

23 hours ago, Brons said:

The wear pattern on the blue finish started to show that I dig the heel of that club more that the toe and I had the realization that most of the grinds on  lower bounce wedges favor relief on the heel side. 

 

Heel relief is common on low-bounce wedges, and sometimes toe relief also.  If you have a problems with heel contact, get the wedge lie angle flattened a degree or two. A fair number of golfers find they get squarer strikes with wedges bent 1 degree flat on lie. (Me included... this is a separate issue from bounce).

Edited by ChipNRun
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What's In The Bag (Summary as of October 2020)

 

Driver:  Tour Edge EXS 10.5°, weights neutral   ||  FWs:  Calla Rogue 4W + 7W

Hybrid:  Calla Big Bertha OS 4H at 22°  ||  Irons:  Tour Edge CB Pro Tungsten 4i-9i

Wedges*:  Calla MD3: 48°... MD4: 54°, 58° ||  Putter: Ping Sigma G Tyne (face-balanced) + Evnroll Gravity Grip

Ball: Calla SuperHot (Orange preferred)  ||  Bag: Sun Mountain Three 5 stand bag

For details see:  Pending (need protocol to embed file list).

     * MD4 54°/10 S-Grind replaced MD3 54°/12 W-Grind.

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1 hour ago, ChipNRun said:

 

 Depends on two things: Your course conditions (lower bounce generally helps on hard turf and firm sand), and your short-game tactics.

 

The traditional approach is leading edge (LE) contact, in which the player hits down on the ball with idea of taking a divot in front of the ball. This is tough to do without a lot of practice and touch. The leading edge beaver pelt crew ends up with a half wedge or chip shot that is either good or bad. Bad = chunk or bullet. Too much "hit down" can also deloft the club more than needed.

 

The past decade many golfers have gone to an "engage the bounce" (ETB) routine for their short game. ETB relies on higher bounce wedges, with the player skimming the sole along the ground.

ETB promises a margin of error. The player sets up with minimal forward shaft lean. If the golfer hits the shot a bit fat, the shot doesn't carry as far in air, and runs out more because it has less spin. If the golfer picks the shot clean, it travels farther in the air, but bites sooner.

 

The way to tell which wedge bounce is best is to do a side-by-side comparison. What works for you?

_______________________

 

Note from Maltby. GolfWorks founder and club designer Ralph Maltby recommends keeping options in bounce. If your ideal bounce is high, you might keep a low-bounce LW for shots when high-B is not needed. If your ideal bounce is low, you might to with a 12-bounce SW so you have some shot options (as per @Bronssuggestion above).

 

 

Heel relief is common on low-bounce wedges, and sometimes toe relief also.  If you have a problems with heel contact, get the wedge lie angle flattened a degree or two. A fair number of golfers find they get squarer strikes with wedges bent 1 degree flat on lie. (Me included... this is a separate issue from bounce).

That is awesome feedback. So many factors beyond what we see on the course. Thanks for that, going to put that to the test on a sim with a fitter.

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I have both low and high bounce wedge.  I prefer the high bounce.  The only time I will break out the 58* is when I have to hit a high one with a ton of spin and out of bunkers.  My 58* usually goes about 110 on a stock full swing but I'd rather do a partial swing with my 54* to hit that yardage.  Better flight and I can control the spin better. 

Edited by phizzy30

TM SIM 2, 8* w/Tensei 1k 70TX

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TM Tour Issue Deep Face Ghost Proto TP 2 HB  w/Thump 105x

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