How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby paradigm_shift » Tue Sep 26, 2017 8:56 am

When Bill Melhorn said that 'golf should be played at around a 45 degree angle' what did he exactly mean? Did he mean Driver through 9 iron should all be set up at 45 degrees?
Did he mean that the driver should be at 45 degrees and then the rest of the irons be set up similar but the shortened shaft would automatically make the angle more upright?


Also has anybody experimented with a very heavy of irons? My putter weighs 20.25 oz and i feel like a 9 iron would feel great at that weight. Are the downsides to this simply that I would have to get stiffer shafts and my swing speed will be slower?
paradigm_shift
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 6:32 am

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby LesMurray » Tue Sep 26, 2017 11:59 am

Not sure I am familiar with that quote, but then I haven't done much research into Bill Melhorne.

When I hear a comment like that it makes me think of the 4:30/7:30 entry and exit lines. Meaning you approach the ball from the inside and exit to the left. The club never travels outside that arch. That helps provide the opposing forces to lock in the club. My 9 iron has a lie angle of about 57*. I think it's Mod 4 when Lag has you check your 5 iron where you are aiming for around 54* or 55* - the angle of the line from the ball through your chi center. Make them too flat and you'll either be way under plane or you'll be striking off the toe and pushing everything right.

I have a nice set of '57 Wilson Staffs that are out-of-the-box heavy. My 9 iron weighs in at 16.75 oz. Lag's specs are 17 oz so very close. At some point I would think that you would be sacrificing too much distance as the weight gets too high. How you would add an addition 3 to 3.5 oz to your club I don't know. If you wanted to maintain a certain swing weight you would need to balance head weighting and butt weighting to get it right. And you would need to also determine how much shaft flex you would get with that much weight in the head. Lag has x-stiff shafts that he tips a couple of inches. Then he matches the flex through his set so he gets the same flex-point and amount of flex through his set. So using that math you are going to hit some weight limit given the type of shaft you are using.
User avatar
LesMurray
 
Posts: 1230
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:32 pm
Location: Burbank, CA

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby lagpressure » Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:36 pm

In the 1950's they had the equipment right. It was also the era that produced the best ball strikers, and the next generation of the Big 3 etc all grew up playing those heavier sets as junior players.

Since then, it's been a downhill slippery slope of poorly designed gear, arm swings, boring golf courses.... everyone chasing the long ball.

Adding weight will hit diminishing returns at some point, then will become counter productive. Swing as heavy as you can handle.... however, I would lean
toward the heavier side of the spectrum rather than the lighter.

I don't think you can go wrong working of 1950's specs for both irons and woods. No need to reinvent a perfectly round wheel.

As far as lie angles. I think most players can play off 6 degrees flat easily. I have had students as tall as 6-4 playing that flat with improved results. There are things one can do with their swings to make that work.
User avatar
lagpressure
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8078
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 12:50 pm

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby Ded2Journey » Tue Sep 26, 2017 2:55 pm

I think it all depends on your goals. In my experience, the flatter you go, the more you remove the left side of the course. Same thing with offset, the less you have...the less left it wants to go. Heavy is directly correlated to accuracy. You will lose distance, but your accuracy can increase exponentially. However, as I've gained in strength my distance has returned to a point. Guess the jury is still out on this one since Hogan could move a 16-17 oz. driver over 120mph SS. More to come on that front...playing with physics is fascinating!

I have been experimenting with this for years now. If I was going to do it all over again, I would start as heavy and flat as I could stand, and I'd do it with zero offset. From there you will learn enough to make your own judgements. I wasted a lot of time trying to figure out how to make modern stuff work before I knew enough to really understand it. Best of luck!
"People have always been telling me what I can't do. I guess I have wanted to show them. That's been one of my driving forces all my life." -Ben Hogan
Ded2Journey
 
Posts: 745
Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:54 pm

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby paradigm_shift » Tue Sep 26, 2017 4:51 pm

Thanks for the responses.

I bought some supplies to make one of my persimmon drivers 15-16 oz so I'll try to experiment on a set of already heavy Hogan/Slazenger Sunburst iron sets I have.

Since following Lag/Bradley principles I have gone from the 100s to shooting in the 80s. I've been using a persimmon driver and a set of 2-9 Macregor/Armour Colokrom set with lead tape that adheres to Lag's specs. I'm playing the best I ever have so I probably shouldn't change a thing.

My backswing is very primitive. I do what Jug Mcspaden supposedly did. I set up at address with the soles flat (but my hands are fairly low). I take the clubface back in its natural arc about 10 inches (45* angle). I keep the angle in the shaft and my left forearm constant with grip pressure and simply lift the club in a straight line in the direction of the clubface to around head height as I simultaneously rotate my shoulders. The transition into my downswing appears to have the clubface drop a few inches behind me (shaft perpendicular to my spine on downswing) and voila the best golf I have played in 20 years.

Sometimes the moments before I raise the clubface I get a bit of the yips. When I take a 'practice' swing with my heavy putter just for the feel I don't have any of the tentativeness before I initiate the raising of my hands in the backswing.

This is what intrigues me about going to a 20 oz 9 iron and progressively lighter as my irons get longer. I guess nobody can answer this for me without me experimenting. The shafts in my sunburst irons are extremely stiff so I think they can handle it.
paradigm_shift
 
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 6:32 am

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby Ded2Journey » Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:39 pm

I like the concept...but I've never tried it. I think the shafts are going to make it somewhat difficult as you progress, but with diligence you may find something you like. Wish I could be more help...
"People have always been telling me what I can't do. I guess I have wanted to show them. That's been one of my driving forces all my life." -Ben Hogan
Ded2Journey
 
Posts: 745
Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:54 pm

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby k2baloo » Fri Mar 23, 2018 7:37 am

I have a driver that's at 420 grams and it feels pretty comfortable. Could probably be a little heavier and I wouldn't mind.
It's nothing pretty, just an old Man Tourney laminate. Impact feels great when there's a little more behind the strike.
k2baloo
 
Posts: 924
Joined: Wed May 15, 2013 5:43 pm

Re: How flat is too flat and how heavy is too heavy?

Postby lagpressure » Fri Mar 23, 2018 10:16 am

k2baloo wrote:I have a driver that's at 420 grams and it feels pretty comfortable. Could probably be a little heavier and I wouldn't mind.
It's nothing pretty, just an old Man Tourney laminate. Impact feels great when there's a little more behind the strike.


That is a pretty good weight.
Just under 15 ounces. It's about where I have my drivers set up.

Moe swung a 16 ounce (one pound) driver. Moe mentioned to me that both Hogan and Knudson swung the same. Moe was always pretty accurate on
those kind of things. I have heard that Snead also was at 16 ounces.

There certainly is a point of diminishing returns, but that would vary from player to player. At some point you would lose too much speed or not be able to handle the "orbit pull" through the strike if you are truly hitting.

But the advantages of a heavy club have more to do with feel and control and weight is the best over acceleration inhibitor.... a concept which is completely overlooked or ignored in the modern super golf approach.
User avatar
lagpressure
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8078
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 12:50 pm


Return to Public Forum- Concepts in Advanced Ball Striking

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 7 guests