ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby k2baloo » Sun Mar 31, 2019 6:19 pm

I'm a nerd about these kinds of things so would encourage you both to share whatever you're comfortable letting out. Hoping this endeavor works out well for you.

As far as the upright drivers... It's really interesting. The obvious responses of toe droop and d-plane have merit, absolutely. I think we all get that. But rationalizing an incorrect lie angle is different and less preferred than just delivering and explaining the correct lie angle.

Which would you prefer?
"Well, the lie on the driver is off, BUT it doesn't matter too much because of x, y, and z...."
OR
"The lie angle on this driver is optimal for you, because of x, y, and z...."

Big difference to me. I've never heard a great explanation as to why the upright lie on the modern driver is an 'advantage', only explanations as to why it doesn't matter too much why it's so upright. The easiest guess is that most golfers suck and slice it and it offers a tiny bit more help against that.

2 other points. They're correct that toe droop does occur (I've heard an average of 7 degrees) and that having the lie off shouldn't affect ball flight on a driver as much as a wedge, BUT:
1. You still have to consider that fairways and hybrids do need to be fit for lie since you hit them off the ground, and so for best contact you don't want the heel or toe hitting the ground prematurely.
2. Having the upright lie can have negative affects on the golfer's confidence, setup, or swing motion.

I'm not too sure how well point #2 has been studied, but the bottom line is, get the lie angle correct and you don't have to worry about the negative consequences of having it wrong. Whether they're large or small should be irrelevant since getting the lie right shouldn't be that difficult. This is one of the reasons I'm a fan of Tom Wishon's stuff since he has the bendable hosels that accommodate lie angle fitting in woods and drivers. Granted, he can't get anything bent as flat as what you all are trying for here, but it's miles better than what you get from the OEMs. Plus, they'll handpick for face angle and loft. Awesome stuff IMO. BTW, they have a smaller driver coming out soon at around 412 CC with the bendable hosel.
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Stu Carlburger » Mon Apr 01, 2019 10:38 pm

With regards to shaft droop, I had a detailed conversation with the head of R&D on a leading custom fitting company (who hit our 1.0 version by the way) and he said that two things influence shaft droop : 1) club head speed; and 2) how much the player raises the handle. Contrary to what would seem logical, a little old lady’s driver shaft isn’t going to droop significantly because she doesn’t get the speed to make it happen. Whose does? Ricky Fowler’s ... more than anyone else they’ve measured — fast swing speed and nearly 20* of handle raise into the strike. As a result, he plays upright clubs with super extra tip stiff shafts that, according to this guy, are impossible for anyone else (even other tour pros) to hit.

As I see it, this is where the OEM’s get themselves into what I call a feed back loop and results in “false positives” in their data. As they raised the lie they saw more and more upward thrusting (to regulate the geometry) and thus more and more shaft droop, which only encouraged them to raise the lie angles more to offset the droop. They didn’t realize that THEY were creating the droop with ever more upright club. Or, maybe they know damn well what they’re doing and why.

The effect is simple to see with an iron lie angle test. It all depends on what lie is “standard.” Today standard to 3-4 degree upright before any length is added, and 5-6 degree upright after accounting for added length. So, the geometry of that so-called “standard lie” is dramatically off and will force the player to raise the handle to seek balance. How well does he do this? If he happens to be very atuned to balance he’ll get a “standard”. But the vertical thrust isn’t a very precise move — especially for les skilled players — and he raises too much and gets reading of 1-3 degree up from ther. Now he’s got a club with woefully bad geometry that’s impossible to hit without a massive upward thrust ... which creates the shaft droop, which necessitates more upright, etc ... but he was “custom fit” so how can it be wrong?! That’s why I call it a feedback loop ... in that one can get almost any result simply by changing the beginning point and allowing the player to adjust to the change in geometry.

Do the OEM’s know this? Are they blinded by their own process and robot testing? I was told leading industry guy that human beings don’t sense and thus try to regulate balance/geometry. Really?! So again, why not make the lies of driver 64* then ... or what about 40*? Basically, it’s patently obvious that we’re either being lied to, or the golf club industry is being lead by morons ... maybe both.
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Ded2Journey » Wed Apr 03, 2019 6:25 am

k2baloo wrote:I'm a nerd about these kinds of things so would encourage you both to share whatever you're comfortable letting out. Hoping this endeavor works out well for you.

As far as the upright drivers... It's really interesting. The obvious responses of toe droop and d-plane have merit, absolutely. I think we all get that. But rationalizing an incorrect lie angle is different and less preferred than just delivering and explaining the correct lie angle.

Which would you prefer?
"Well, the lie on the driver is off, BUT it doesn't matter too much because of x, y, and z...."
OR
"The lie angle on this driver is optimal for you, because of x, y, and z...."

Big difference to me. I've never heard a great explanation as to why the upright lie on the modern driver is an 'advantage', only explanations as to why it doesn't matter too much why it's so upright. The easiest guess is that most golfers suck and slice it and it offers a tiny bit more help against that.

2 other points. They're correct that toe droop does occur (I've heard an average of 7 degrees) and that having the lie off shouldn't affect ball flight on a driver as much as a wedge, BUT:
1. You still have to consider that fairways and hybrids do need to be fit for lie since you hit them off the ground, and so for best contact you don't want the heel or toe hitting the ground prematurely.
2. Having the upright lie can have negative affects on the golfer's confidence, setup, or swing motion.

I'm not too sure how well point #2 has been studied, but the bottom line is, get the lie angle correct and you don't have to worry about the negative consequences of having it wrong. Whether they're large or small should be irrelevant since getting the lie right shouldn't be that difficult. This is one of the reasons I'm a fan of Tom Wishon's stuff since he has the bendable hosels that accommodate lie angle fitting in woods and drivers. Granted, he can't get anything bent as flat as what you all are trying for here, but it's miles better than what you get from the OEMs. Plus, they'll handpick for face angle and loft. Awesome stuff IMO. BTW, they have a smaller driver coming out soon at around 412 CC with the bendable hosel.


K2,

Toe Droop, it seems, is a chicken/egg situation. Did the upright lie angle, light titanium head and lightweight shafts create this affect? Or did toe droop always exist? In reality, Toe Droop is a "vapor trail" to handle raising, not the other way around (this is how Hogan returned with shaft sometimes below his address plane--heel digs you discussed above). Handle raising must happen with upright lie angles, since the toe shuts down so much quicker on an upright plane. Lag has discussed this using his door hinge analogy many times. It is complete fact as far as I'm concerned. Especially, if you take the time to study some angular momentum basics...mass following mass, etc.

As far as Wishon drivers...I've owned 2 and the Bridgestone J33R. I was able to bend them all down to 53, but I never found the "slot" with them. Not to mention the countless Titleist 975D's, etc. we've torched, cracked, attempted to bend, remove offset, etc., etc., etc. In order to find a consistent driver using flatter P3 entry, we had to create one. Truthfully, I was very skeptical--but after using it for months now--I'm very happy we pushed it to this limit. Bottom Line: FLATTER IS BETTER, and you can't Band Aid this. Trust me...it is a blueprint/recipe--and I can promise you won't find the "God Move" without the proper entry plane. This statement is only true given my "average" height and club length of course.

So...This is how I got to a XX stiff shaft and 30 grams of lead tape with an average 110 mph swing speed. I was actually able to lower the shaft through impact (ABS super slotting), without getting a hook. In fact, I now play a consistent closed stance power fade.

Stu basically outlines the type 2 errors occurring within the golfing industry above...it's about the quantity, not quality anymore. Gotta keep the $$$ monster alive...the science they feed you benefits them, and is by no means fact.
"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
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby k2baloo » Wed Apr 03, 2019 12:26 pm

Toe droop has always been around. Clubmakers were aware of it even with persimmon. I have a clubmaking book from the perimmon era I use as a reference for builds and it discusses it. The magnitude of it will vary based on the club specs and the person's swing. I agree all things indicate newer drivers make that problem worse.

Finally ordered my driver. I'm going with a 54* lie which I think will work nicely. We'll see how it goes.
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Stu Carlburger » Wed Apr 03, 2019 8:26 pm

Good luck with that driver, K2. You’ll feel a huge difference, especially if you keep the length down below 44”.

Speaking of Wishon, I have had several wonderful exchanges with Tom himself while developing this driver. He’s always been very positive, and said so much of how a driver performs has to do with look and whether the player can hit centerface with the length they choose. He said go short and if you can add length and still hit the center, go for it. If you cannot hit the Center players should be shortening the shaft first. This from The Godfather of custom fitting. He’s a very sharp guy but even he couldn’t really answer why the lies got so out of whack. At least Tom offered options and understands the vital importance of lie angles — even with drivers.
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Ded2Journey » Thu Apr 04, 2019 5:51 am

k2baloo wrote:Toe droop has always been around. Clubmakers were aware of it even with persimmon. I have a clubmaking book from the perimmon era I use as a reference for builds and it discusses it. The magnitude of it will vary based on the club specs and the person's swing. I agree all things indicate newer drivers make that problem worse.

Finally ordered my driver. I'm going with a 54* lie which I think will work nicely. We'll see how it goes.


I'm sure you'll do great with it...I know you're dedicated. Please keep us posted!

I am just searching for perfection I guess :roll: . Final thought about Toe droop...do you really think a piece of Rebar would have Toe droop? The stiffer the shaft, the less likely the odds. So, why is it that we want this?

It removes yet another controllable variable from the swing. The golf industry has everyone thinking they need a shaft that matches swing speed--to make up for the mistakes in their theoretical design. Another industry error...imho. Maybe professional golfers that have a grooved move need that, but the average weekend golfer would improve his tee game with at least on step up in stiffness. When I worked at Golfsmith, everyone I fitted to a stiffer than recommended shaft hit it straighter, with less spin, and usually within one degree of launch (which is easily adjustable now)--and always improvements in overall distance. I know they still use that "trick" to get people to buy clubs...FYI. Yet, it still amazed me to watch them buy shafts that fit their swing speed in "theory". The worst part...usually improvements in centered contact would occur after a few swings--crunch on why that is for a minute--I know I did for a long time.

But hey, experience doesn't mean as much as it used to...guess we've forgotten where truth lies. It's not in the books...it's in the present moment, in YOUR dirt. I guess we've just forgotten how to pay attention (I know I'm guilty here more often than I like to admit). Flatter, Heavier, Stiffer than you "think" you should go. Go until the ball won't lift...then you can start backing it down.

Don't take this as passive aggressively as it sounds...I'm just confused why people are so "sure" of toe droop. :lol: It's only real because the industry needs it to be...so they can sell drivers to the twice a year OTT golfer.
"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
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby k2baloo » Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:36 am

Ded, I already mentioned club specs and a person's swing affect how much droop exists. So I think we're on the same page, not sure if that's understood or not.
Any combo of stiffer shaft, lighter clubhead, shorter club, less handle raising, slower swing (and other things I'm unaware of or forgetting) -> less toe droop

Stu, I like Tom's work a lot. I plan on playing the driver at 43.5 inches based on my experience with many persimmon builds.
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Ded2Journey » Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:43 am

k2baloo wrote:Ded, I already mentioned club specs and a person's swing affect how much droop exists. So I think we're on the same page, not sure if that's understood or not.
Any combo of stiffer shaft, lighter clubhead, shorter club, less handle raising, slower swing (and other things I'm unaware of or forgetting) -> less toe droop

Stu, I like Tom's work a lot. I plan on playing the driver at 43.5 inches based on my experience with many persimmon builds.


Yeah, it's a soapbox thing for me K2...my ego's desire to be right. Just grateful for a place to release it...and yes, we're on the same page. I just know there is an equation now...I feel a bit like Archimedes. Sometimes it is the Arrow...not the Archer.
"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
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Wknhacker » Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:11 am

Hey Ded, are you still using that Callaway Epic Sub Zero driver?

I recall you posting that you loved the feel off the face and that it felt a bit like a persimmon driver. I'm thinking of picking up one second handed and would love to hear your thoughts as to whether you still game that club.

My apologies if this slightly off topic from the thread.
"I have a tip that can take five strokes off anyone's golf game: it's called an eraser." - Arnold Palmer
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Re: ABS Modern Driver? It exists...

Postby Ded2Journey » Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:19 am

Wknhacker wrote:Hey Ded, are you still using that Callaway Epic Sub Zero driver?

I recall you posting that you loved the feel off the face and that it felt a bit like a persimmon driver. I'm thinking of picking up one second handed and would love to hear your thoughts as to whether you still game that club.

My apologies if this slightly off topic from the thread.


No, I got rid of that years ago. Feel and numbers were great, but over time it caused back and swing issues. I like my new driver much much better...but if I was going modern I'd play Callaway. To me they have the best of all worlds in the Driver arena. Besides, TM is just starting to make crap up now to sell drivers. I wouldn't be surprised if this new TM foam technology isn't a fix they had to make because they designed their new faces too thin. Good conspiracy theory for the books anyway... :lol:
"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
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