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OK, who’s played the TaylorMade 300 Mini Driver?


winegr

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Quick aside - I found a helpful golfwrx thread cautioning about playing shorter drivers if you’re tall.  I’m 6’4” and had been experimenting with cutting down my Ping driver while adding head weight and apparently went too far.  Added 1” back on and immediately straighter. Crazy game.


Regardless, need the mini on “those days” and tight holes.  Maybe the mini (or stretch) will let me get after the driver a bit more vs steering it in play.  Had one 265 drive yesterday, good for me at age 65.  But most important is getting the ball in play…worst case, make bogey.
 

I’m not reaching long par 5s at my age, can reach short ones with a hybrid.  Three wood stopped making sense a few years ago.

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I got my 300 Mini a few weeks back - only hit it once at the range and wasn't thrilled with the shaft, which was a no-upcharge Aldila Rogue 110 60S.  The club felt too light, so I had the TM adapter installed on an extra GD AD DI 7S that I had (at stock length of 43.75") and tried it out today. 

 

First impressions are really good - it's a fairway finder and the size of the head gives me more confidence off the tee than my 16.5* 4w on short or tight par-4's.  I need to tee it pretty low to get the most of it - it feels really solid when struck well with the ball teed low.  Distance is as expected - less than driver and longer than the 4w.  I'm LH, so only the 11.5* was available - I have it lofted up 2*, which closes the face a bit.  I'll need to try out a few different settings to see which gives me the best balance of launch and face angle.  

 

Biggest issue is which club to drop from the bag.  Candidates would be 4w (usually only hit it on one hole, a 230 yard par-3), 4-iron (maybe hit it once per round), or 56* wedge.  Leaning towards 4w right now.

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I used to game the OO in 13.5 and loved it so much I sold it. As always. 

Did anyone game the OO in 13.5 and loft it down to 11.5, and now game the same loft in the 300 13.5, or did you have to go to the 11.5? I suppose what I'm asking is is the OO and 300 very comparable on ballfight all things being equal? Just trying to work out which loft I should get the 300 in.

 

DR: Callaway XR16 Sub Zero Tour Issue 9.5° + Fujikura Pro 61tx @ 45".

FW: Taylormade SIM MaxD 16° + Tensei AV 75x @ 42 1/2".
HY: Taylormade Aeroburner TP 22° + White Tie HX4 x @ 40 1/2".
Irons: Taylormade R9 Forged 5i-PW + Quadra 100i Pro x.
Wedges: Callaway Jaws Forged 51°/56°/61° + C-Taper
Putter: SeeMore SB1 + Accra FX300.

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11 hours ago, dwboston said:

I got my 300 Mini a few weeks back - only hit it once at the range and wasn't thrilled with the shaft, which was a no-upcharge Aldila Rogue 110 60S.  The club felt too light, so I had the TM adapter installed on an extra GD AD DI 7S that I had (at stock length of 43.75") and tried it out today. 

 

First impressions are really good - it's a fairway finder and the size of the head gives me more confidence off the tee than my 16.5* 4w on short or tight par-4's.  I need to tee it pretty low to get the most of it - it feels really solid when struck well with the ball teed low.  Distance is as expected - less than driver and longer than the 4w.  I'm LH, so only the 11.5* was available - I have it lofted up 2*, which closes the face a bit.  I'll need to try out a few different settings to see which gives me the best balance of launch and face angle.  

 

Biggest issue is which club to drop from the bag.  Candidates would be 4w (usually only hit it on one hole, a 230 yard par-3), 4-iron (maybe hit it once per round), or 56* wedge.  Leaning towards 4w right now.

 

Yeah, I dropped my 5w from the bag, which was next in line in my bag after driver (and had replaced 3 woods that I never seemed to get along with).  This 300 Mini is a bigger head and more forgiving than the 5w, certainly off the tee, and longer.  Off the deck, I am not looking to hit the 300 Mini, and rarely used the 5w off the deck anyway.  I can go 7w or 4 hybrid with more success.  And I use my 7w on long par 3s.

 

You'll sort it out for your own needs.  But I could never drop my 4 hybrid (in your case 4 iron), and wouldn't want to lose my 7w or a wedge.  YMMV.

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5 hours ago, ian-500 said:

I used to game the OO in 13.5 and loved it so much I sold it. As always. 

Did anyone game the OO in 13.5 and loft it down to 11.5, and now game the same loft in the 300 13.5, or did you have to go to the 11.5? I suppose what I'm asking is is the OO and 300 very comparable on ballfight all things being equal? Just trying to work out which loft I should get the 300 in.

I had both lofts in the O.O. and now own both lofts in the 300. I find them to be very comparable, loft for loft, between the two models, at least in terms of ball flight. I sold my O.O.s in part because I never really found the right shaft.

 

Both models are pretty low spin but I almost think the O.O. was an even lower spinning head. Ball speed, forgiveness, and especially sound and feel (which I liked in the O.O. but absolutely love in the 300) are better in the 300. And despite the larger head size, it is possible to hit it off the deck with a decent lie. 

 

I now have the 13.5 in a Ventus Blue 7x and it's been phenomenal (playing it at stock length and 12*) as well as a 11.5 (set up at 9.5 and 44.25 inches in a Ventus 6x) that I will be testing on the range today. I'm considering a two-mini setup with one designed or low-mid, low-spinning power fades and one that is more for mid-high draws and stingers. We'll see.  

Edited by uglande
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21 hours ago, uglande said:

I had both lofts in the O.O. and now own both lofts in the 300. I find them to be very comparable, loft for loft, between the two models, at least in terms of ball flight. I sold my O.O.s in part because I never really found the right shaft.

 

Both models are pretty low spin but I almost think the O.O. was an even lower spinning head. Ball speed, forgiveness, and especially sound and feel (which I liked in the O.O. but absolutely love in the 300) are better in the 300. And despite the larger head size, it is possible to hit it off the deck with a decent lie. 

 

I now have the 13.5 in a Ventus Blue 7x and it's been phenomenal (playing it at stock length and 12*) as well as a 11.5 (set up at 9.5 and 44.25 inches in a Ventus 6x) that I will be testing on the range today. I'm considering a two-mini setup with one designed or low-mid, low-spinning power fades and one that is more for mid-high draws and stingers. We'll see.  

Please let us know how the range session goes.

 

DR: Callaway XR16 Sub Zero Tour Issue 9.5° + Fujikura Pro 61tx @ 45".

FW: Taylormade SIM MaxD 16° + Tensei AV 75x @ 42 1/2".
HY: Taylormade Aeroburner TP 22° + White Tie HX4 x @ 40 1/2".
Irons: Taylormade R9 Forged 5i-PW + Quadra 100i Pro x.
Wedges: Callaway Jaws Forged 51°/56°/61° + C-Taper
Putter: SeeMore SB1 + Accra FX300.

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2 hours ago, ian-500 said:

Please let us know how the range session goes.

Will do. I had a short session yesterday but want to do another longer session before making any conclusions, so I'll report back after that. One thing is clear, the 6x shaft, which actually plays a little over 44.50 in., is too long. It made the 11.5 too heavy, so the good strikes were great, but things were inconsistent overall. I also was hitting off of a mat and could not get my preferred (lower) tee height, which is key for me to hit the Mini well. So, more to come ... 

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Played 9 on the home course for the HS team I "coach" for our practice round again. As I said in an earlier post, it's a bit of an odd front 9 and can only hit driver on one hole. On that hole though again I was 270 total from the tee box. A low tee is definitely the way to go. I seem to get a nice slight fade. As I've already said, the best shots with the mini DO NOT carry or roll out as far as the best I've hit with a regular driver. But, I am hitting way more good shots with the Mini than I did with a regular driver and the misses have been much more manageable. I think the only reason I would get rid of it at this point would be to try something else, likely to my own detriment 😁

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I finally got a chance to give mine a real workout last night for 9. I had originally ordered it with a V2 80x from TaylorMade that just didn’t work for me. 
 

I received a Ventus Black 10x from People’s Golf yesterday and put that in it. Way better. It was only 9 holes, so far, but the results are promising.
 

I’m playing the 13.5* head at standard loft, and at 42.75”. As a second tee option that’s shorter and straighter than my driver. I very rarely, maybe once out of 15 rounds, need to hit my 3 wood off the fairway so having the larger size head in the same loft makes more sense.

 

There’s a ton of holes at my home course where I don’t need to hit driver, but want something longer than a hybrid or an iron. This seems to fit that gap perfectly. 
 

My next issue to address with it is to find an aftermarket headcover that fits it, because it sure is ugly. 

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On 8/25/2021 at 5:50 PM, rmgatl said:

I picked up a used stretch 3 coming in a few days and will compare the two.  Will post or you can PM me.


The stretch has the shorter shaft but also the smaller head.  I also have a couple Ping shafts and can more likely get a good fit.


I hit the mini ok yesterday.  Made similar decent swings with both my driver and the mini on two consecutive  holes.  Found two balls on each hole  lying about 7-8 yards apart, all 4 shots in the 240-250 range.  My driver SS is about 97-100.  If I get the ball on short grass, can shoot in the 70s.

I am definitely selling my standard Ping 3 wood, will either carry the stretch or mini.  Have 3 weeks to keep or return the mini.

Cool...thanks.  Would love to know what you think of both -- mini and stretch.  Our SS are similar, so interested to hear what you think.  I dropped a wedge this season so can work in both Driver and larger 3+.  

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2 hours ago, MPAndreassi said:

 

My next issue to address with it is to find an aftermarket headcover that fits it, because it sure is ugly. 

Let me know when you find one. I don't really mind the stock one but would really like a nice aftermarket one.

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Can someone confirm the length of the stock shaft when not connected to the head please? Someone did think it was 42.5 but hadn't confirmed it.....

 

DR: Callaway XR16 Sub Zero Tour Issue 9.5° + Fujikura Pro 61tx @ 45".

FW: Taylormade SIM MaxD 16° + Tensei AV 75x @ 42 1/2".
HY: Taylormade Aeroburner TP 22° + White Tie HX4 x @ 40 1/2".
Irons: Taylormade R9 Forged 5i-PW + Quadra 100i Pro x.
Wedges: Callaway Jaws Forged 51°/56°/61° + C-Taper
Putter: SeeMore SB1 + Accra FX300.

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40 minutes ago, ian-500 said:

Can someone confirm the length of the stock shaft when not connected to the head please? Someone did think it was 42.5 but hadn't confirmed it.....

With the adapter and the stock Z Grip on it’s 1.083 m (42.6”) end to end by my  tape measure.

Edited by sg91
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Driver: 11.5* Taylormade 300 Mini Driver Evenflow Riptide 70 6.0

3 Wood: 15* Mizuno ST200 Diamana S+ 70 S

Hybrid: 19* (@18*) Mizuno CLK Hybrid Tensei CK Pro Blue Hybrid 70 S

Irons: 5-PW Mizuno MP-20 MMC Project X 6.0

Wedges: 50/08, 54/11 Wilson Staff Model Wedge DG 120 S300, 60/10 Cleveland RTX Zipcore DG Spinner Tour Issue

Putter: Scotty Cameron Studio Select Newport 2

Ball: Srixon Z Star

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13 minutes ago, sg91 said:

With the adapter and the stock Z Grip on it’s 1.083 m (42.6”) end to end by my  tape measure.

Much appreciated.

 

DR: Callaway XR16 Sub Zero Tour Issue 9.5° + Fujikura Pro 61tx @ 45".

FW: Taylormade SIM MaxD 16° + Tensei AV 75x @ 42 1/2".
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Irons: Taylormade R9 Forged 5i-PW + Quadra 100i Pro x.
Wedges: Callaway Jaws Forged 51°/56°/61° + C-Taper
Putter: SeeMore SB1 + Accra FX300.

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Pulled out my 300 Mini for a couple of tee shots in today’s round.  First tee shot with it, perfect little cut on a par 4 onto the fairway. Second tee shot with it, on a short par 4.  Just needed to swing easy, poke it out there 210-230 yards, right in this wheelhouse.  Of course, over-swung by about twofold, pulled the ball by about 40 yards, almost hit my buddy coming up the fairway in the group behind us (yelled fore of course), lol.  Still ended up with a par putt, but this game, I’ll tell ya… 

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For guys who are hitting this really well what ball speed difference are you seeing between 3 wood and the 11.5 head off the tee.

 

I'm pretty efficient with my 3 wood  and get ball speeds around 150mph but put a driver in my hand and I overswing and lose my tempo completely. Literally hit it all over the face. If I could get high 150s with this hitting it with the same swing I use for 3 wood id love it.

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On 8/29/2021 at 5:39 AM, peepee said:

For guys who are hitting this really well what ball speed difference are you seeing between 3 wood and the 11.5 head off the tee.

 

I'm pretty efficient with my 3 wood  and get ball speeds around 150mph but put a driver in my hand and I overswing and lose my tempo completely. Literally hit it all over the face. If I could get high 150s with this hitting it with the same swing I use for 3 wood id love it.

I'm mid to high 140s ball speed with my 3 wood (~102 mph head speed), maybe low 150s if I really go after it and am in the mid 150s regularly with the 11.5 head. For reference that I usually carry my 3 wood 220-225 m and the Mini Driver is about 20 m ahead of that. 

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Driver: 11.5* Taylormade 300 Mini Driver Evenflow Riptide 70 6.0

3 Wood: 15* Mizuno ST200 Diamana S+ 70 S

Hybrid: 19* (@18*) Mizuno CLK Hybrid Tensei CK Pro Blue Hybrid 70 S

Irons: 5-PW Mizuno MP-20 MMC Project X 6.0

Wedges: 50/08, 54/11 Wilson Staff Model Wedge DG 120 S300, 60/10 Cleveland RTX Zipcore DG Spinner Tour Issue

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Did some more testing (just at the range, so I can't measure spin) and the best combo for me was the stock length 7x ventus blue but in the 11.5 degree head, set to 10.0 degrees. This opens the face a few degrees, which mitigates the general leftward tendency of the mini. 

 

This combo was giving me numbers comparable to my driver: 108-110 club / 155-160 ball / 265-280 carry. I'm not sure about spin, but the ball came out hot with some roll, so probably add +10-15 to the carry distance. Launch was 10-12 and peak height 90-110 feet. 

 

This is what I am going with now as my driver. Testing on the course on Friday. 

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I bought an 11.5 head in the classifieds and sourced my own shaft on eBay. I chose a HZRDUS Black 70g 6.0. It came equipped with a TM adapter and it plays at 44.5” installed. I’m going to try it at that length but I’m more than willing to cut it down by .50-.75”. 
 

I sometimes struggle to close the face with drivers so I always buy the lower loft and adjust upward if necessary. 
 

My current “safe” tee club is a Mavrik Max 3+ on a 44” shaft. It may be hard to beat that one, but I did love the flight of the SLDR mini that I used to carry, and having a loft sleeve will be nice. 
 

The tropical depression is coming to town overnight with 5” of rain in tow so it may be a few days before I can give it a go. 

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57 minutes ago, me05501 said:

I bought an 11.5 head in the classifieds and sourced my own shaft on eBay. I chose a HZRDUS Black 70g 6.0. It came equipped with a TM adapter and it plays at 44.5” installed. I’m going to try it at that length but I’m more than willing to cut it down by .50-.75”. 
 

I sometimes struggle to close the face with drivers so I always buy the lower loft and adjust upward if necessary. 
 

My current “safe” tee club is a Mavrik Max 3+ on a 44” shaft. It may be hard to beat that one, but I did love the flight of the SLDR mini that I used to carry, and having a loft sleeve will be nice. 
 

The tropical depression is coming to town overnight with 5” of rain in tow so it may be a few days before I can give it a go. 


I reread my post and realized I needed to squeeze in a quick range session before the storm!


At first I struggled a bit because I was setting up to it like a driver. I wasn’t getting much spin so the ball was kind of dying out there. I kept playing around with it and reverted to the setup that always worked well with my SLDR mini. Essentially it’s a fairway wood setup with the ball a bit further back and all my body lines square to the target line. Very simple, no adjustments necessary to produce a high little draw that seemed to have some oomph behind it. 
 

I’m supposed to play a casual round on Friday so I’ll keep my wrench handy and try to dial it in as I go. Right now I have the 11.5 lofted up just shy of max. I think I can go a bit lower. The face really seems hot and the ball wants to go very straight with a tight little draw. Pretty. 

 

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5 minutes ago, me05501 said:


I reread my post and realized I needed to squeeze in a quick range session before the storm!


At first I struggled a bit because I was setting up to it like a driver. I wasn’t getting much spin so the ball was kind of dying out there. I kept playing around with it and reverted to the setup that always worked well with my SLDR mini. Essentially it’s a fairway wood setup with the ball a bit further back and all my body lines square to the target line. Very simple, no adjustments necessary to produce a high little draw that seemed to have some oomph behind it. 
 

I’m supposed to play a casual round on Friday so I’ll keep my wrench handy and try to dial it in as I go. Right now I have the 11.5 lofted up just shy of max. I think I can go a bit lower. The face really seems hot and the ball wants to go very straight with a tight little draw. Pretty. 

 

 

This guy definitely demands a bit of tinkering with loft settings, shafts, shaft length, tee height, ball position...  I went from the stock stiff to the stock regular shaft, but came back to the stiff.  More control with the stiff, and more dispersion with the regular.  Will do more testing on shafts and length in the off-season, but probably sticking with the stock stiff for now, with an upright/closed/more loft setting.  Had really good success with the 300 Mini in a couple of rounds this past weekend.

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I noticed today that the TM site no longer allows Customization. Is this a new thing? I swear I built one with a Raw Tensei Blue X a few weeks ago

#1: Callaway Epic Speed Triple Diamond 9'- Ventus Black 6X 

#3: Ping G400 Stretch 13' - HZRDUS HC Yellow 75g 6.5

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I: National Custom Works CB/MB DW - MMT 125 TX

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On 8/17/2021 at 11:35 AM, jt2gt said:

Any mini driver players ever play the G400 Ping Stretch 3?  If so, comparisons?   I'm liking my Driver, Stretch 3, 4 wood, Hybrid set up, but this club might fill in even better at the stretch 3 position.

I’ve played enough now with the stretch I just picked up to have an opinion vs my 13.5 mini.  Bottom line, I’m keeping the stretch and returning the mini (which I liked).  I hit both roughly the same distance.  
 

Big caveat:  I have ping tour shafts already that I really like and are a good fit for me.  My mini shaft is ok but probably not ideal - I don’t have spare TM shafts laying around and don’t feel like chasing shafts right now.

 

I feel plenty confident hitting the stretch off the tee - smaller head than the mini but still huge plus shorter shaft, no worries.  The mini does remarkably well from the fairway considering it’s size, but the stretch can play from the fairway more easily; after all, it really is just a little bigger/stronger 3 wood).  I will more often hit my strong 5 wood from the fairway, but wouldn’t hesitate trying the stretch from a good lie.  

 

So I like the mini but find the stretch more versatile plus I have a better shaft fit. Also, making progress with my driver and not giving up.

 

What would tilt me back to the mini?  Probably getting a good fit on the 11.5* and seeing enough performance off the tee to just drop my driver on most courses.  I could imagine getting there, but my 13.5* isn’t there.

 

Anyway, really like both clubs. 

 

 

 

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Played today with Mini 11.5 as my only driver and course of about 6500 yards. Here were my drives:

 

Fairway

Fairway

Right rough

Right rough

Fairway

Hard pull

Fairway

Hard Pull

Right Rough

Fairway

Fairway

Fairway

 

So two drives that went a bit haywire -- both were double-crosses where I tried to cut it but pulled instead.  I just didn't get my body through the swing. All the rest of my drives were fairway or just off the fairway but not in trouble. 

 

I was just trying to hit fairways today so mostly swung at about 85 percent and was able to get an easy 250-260 on a soaked course. I didn't miss driver at all. I might still go with both Driver and Mini in the bag when playing very long courses, but that's rare. most of the courses I play reward precision more than distance. 

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16 hours ago, rmgatl said:

I’ve played enough now with the stretch I just picked up to have an opinion vs my 13.5 mini.  Bottom line, I’m keeping the stretch and returning the mini (which I liked).  I hit both roughly the same distance.  
 

Big caveat:  I have ping tour shafts already that I really like and are a good fit for me.  My mini shaft is ok but probably not ideal - I don’t have spare TM shafts laying around and don’t feel like chasing shafts right now.

 

I feel plenty confident hitting the stretch off the tee - smaller head than the mini but still huge plus shorter shaft, no worries.  The mini does remarkably well from the fairway considering it’s size, but the stretch can play from the fairway more easily; after all, it really is just a little bigger/stronger 3 wood).  I will more often hit my strong 5 wood from the fairway, but wouldn’t hesitate trying the stretch from a good lie.  

 

So I like the mini but find the stretch more versatile plus I have a better shaft fit. Also, making progress with my driver and not giving up.

 

What would tilt me back to the mini?  Probably getting a good fit on the 11.5* and seeing enough performance off the tee to just drop my driver on most courses.  I could imagine getting there, but my 13.5* isn’t there.

 

Anyway, really like both clubs. 

 

 

 

Thanks...was giving you some time before I bothered you with a PM.  Thanks for posting.  Our setups seem similar...Im playing stretch at 13 and strong 5 at 16.5.  Still may have to give the mini a try.  I have a minimal bag that it might be perfect for.  

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59 minutes ago, jt2gt said:

Thanks...was giving you some time before I bothered you with a PM.  Thanks for posting.  Our setups seem similar...Im playing stretch at 13 and strong 5 at 16.5.  Still may have to give the mini a try.  I have a minimal bag that it might be perfect for.  

I was thinking the same thing, ~9 club bag.  Although the stretch could make sense for that as well.  Maybe down the road, try to get a good fit on an 11.5 Mini.   Won’t be surprised if a bunch show up on the market in a few months. 
 

That stretch is pretty awesome, your post prompted me to try it, thanks.  I never got quite enough out of the standard G400 3 wood off the tee to view it as a serious driver backup.  More playable from fairway than I would have guessed, even at my modest ~100 SS, but does require a good swing off the turf.

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Played this morning with the Mini and a new golf ball (Srixon Z Star rather than my normal Tour B RX) and the combo was long. There's only one par five on each nine on the second course at my club and was fairly easily 250-255 m right centre with a comfortable mid-long iron into the green on both. Used it on a couple of the longer par 4s as well (rest of the course is mostly hybrid or 4 iron off the tee) and had  9 irons or wedges into each of the greens. No lost balls and even when I did miss the fairway, it was no big deal as I had clear lines of sight to the green.

 

So the Mini is staying in the bag for this upcoming summer (I live in the Southern Hemisphere) because golf is so much more fun when you're confident off the tee.

Edited by sg91
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Driver: 11.5* Taylormade 300 Mini Driver Evenflow Riptide 70 6.0

3 Wood: 15* Mizuno ST200 Diamana S+ 70 S

Hybrid: 19* (@18*) Mizuno CLK Hybrid Tensei CK Pro Blue Hybrid 70 S

Irons: 5-PW Mizuno MP-20 MMC Project X 6.0

Wedges: 50/08, 54/11 Wilson Staff Model Wedge DG 120 S300, 60/10 Cleveland RTX Zipcore DG Spinner Tour Issue

Putter: Scotty Cameron Studio Select Newport 2

Ball: Srixon Z Star

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Anyone thinking of ordering a new mini driver might be out of luck.

Taylormade has pulled them off the shelves at the PGASS because heads won’t be available until March at the earliest.

Ping G425 Max 9*

Callaway Epic Max 15* 

Cleveland Halo Hy wood 18*

Callaway Rogue X 20*

PXG Gen3 0311XP 5-GW

PXG 0311 Forged 54* & 58*

Seemore Mini Giant 34”

Sun Mountain 2.5+

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