Geotech Golf has always been known to make some very nice metal woods with very good cost performance attractiveness. Geotech’s roots afterall were in the metal wood manufacturing business beginning over 23 years ago as part of Dynamic Golf. In the past I’ve tried many Geotech fairway woods and utilities and come away fairly impressed with overall performance especially when factoring in costs. Geotech has become Japan’s top components brand and that is a lot to say in probably what is the most demanding and picky golf market in the world. What other country has every global golf club model PLUS all its own Japan only models from all the big golf brands. Japan’s consumers demand premium selection, so the brands oblige.
Simple Gets it Done…
Geotech, being a smaller company, has always thrived on creating a wide selection of performing golf clubs, many of which are no frill clubs that simply do their job. When I saw the new Prototype RF700 fairway woods and utilities back in February at the Japan Golf Fair, they immediate caught my eye because of their simplicity. Believe it or not there are still golfers today who prefer simple and back to basics and that is what the RF700 line provides. Geotech sent over a couple of demos for me to try out this week, a Prototype RF700 18* 5 wood and also a Prototype RF700 18* 3Utility.
Handsome looking faces…
When comparing the two clubs, aesthetically they share the same visual design which makes sense since they are from the same line. They have a very similar face profile and shape with the RF700 fairway wood being slightly deeper allowing for versatility off the tee or deck and allowing for a slightly higher CG point. The fairway wood is designed to spin less giving more distance and a stable penetrating trajectory. It has a smaller gravity angle and its square to open face is meant for workability including draw and fade. The RF700 Utility is shallower and has a lower CG allowing for an easy launch from a variety of conditions including bad lies. Its higher launch and higher spin allow you to attack the green using the utility instead of a long iron from a distance and get the trajectory and back spin you need to stick it close to the pin.
Pleasing at address…
The Prototype RF700 is aimed at the low to mid handicapper and better player. Those players will appreciate the smaller more compact head sizes and the simple clean lines at address. The RF700 fairway wood features a strong 3 wood with 13* loft. The 13* is the only RF700 with a closed face at 0.5*. As the lofts increase the RF700 fairway woods have increasingly open faces, in other words the 15* is 0* square, the 18* 5 wood is 0.5* open, the 21* 7 wood is 1.5* open. This allows for more control and avoiding a pull or hook with shorter woods which can be common among faster or harder swingers. For me the RF700 Utility looks very much like the very popular Royal Collection TRC Utility at address.
Focus on stability and control…
Geotech wanted to ensure stable and firm flexes with the Prototype RF700 line so instead of a standard 30mm insertion depth, the hosels of both the fairway wood and utility have hosel depths of 40mm. This stiffens up the tip of any installed shaft to create more stability and control again aimed at the better player. The Prototype RF700’s also provide rather solid feel at impact. The body and face are all made of SUS630 stainless steel creating a more subtle thwock at impact rather than the high pitched tink we hear from many metal woods today.
Attractive Cost Performance…
The sole design of the RF700 features a dual level sole with cut away trailing areas to minimize friction at impact with the turf. This is about as technical as the RF700 gets but honestly, it doesn’t need to be any more fancy. I like its clean looks and it feels solid at impact. Its design creates a workable and stable ball flight and I find the the shape of the fairway and utility heads blend well together ie if you carried a RF700 3 and 5 wood and then 4 and 5 Utility it would seamlessly flow from club to club. Certainly the RF700 will not rival the PRGR Egg Spoon in a distance competition, nor will it outdo Royal Collection when it comes to feel, however at its price, it is a solid performer which will appeal to many golfers who don’t have the deep pockets for the big name brands but want to build their own clubs to their own specs (the FW takes 0.335″ tip shafts while the UT takes 0.370″ tip). So what will the RF700 set you back? It’s 80.00 a head for the fairway wood and 70.00 a head for the utility. Even with the ultra strong Japanese yen, those are pretty darn good prices. Look for them in the pro shop this coming week!
Golf is an ever changing game and for the average and weekend golfer so can be their swing. We all go through swing changes, from the time we first pick up clubs, to injuries we suffer, and to when time catches up to us and our body simply doesn’t want to listen anymore. Recently I’ve hit the point where I’ve begun to rethink my entire bag due to changes in my swing. Since moving to Japan 3 years ago, I’ve played much more golf than I did in the past and dare I say my game has improved. But in the process my swing has changed as well. My swing speed has naturally increased with confidence and skill and I’ve become much more aggressive at the top and create much more lag than I ever did in the past. The result has been a lot more pulled shots than ever and occasionally the dreaded duck hook. I’ve finally come to admit, that perhaps my clubs are too light for me and flex too soft.
I’ve always been a believer that average golfers with average swing speeds are best off with lighter clubs and the softest flex they CAN control in order to maximize distance and forgiveness and feel. Of course we all need to be fit for the right clubs but when our swing changes, we need to look at whether those clubs till fit. In the last few weeks I’ve played, I’ve noticed that I was pulling all my woods and missed shots with the irons were usually thin. At that point I decided that I should overhaul my entire bag at which point I moved all my gamers including the ONOFF Fairway woods, VG3H utilities, VG3 Forged Irons, all of which were lightweight and with regular flex shafts. I’m lucky that I have the luxury of falling back on left over and collected gear over the years so before making the big investment in all brand new clubs and shafts I thought I would experiment a bit by going heavier and stiffer with some clubs I had in the closet.
The thought is by going heavier and stiffer, I can stabilize my swing and move my focus from distance to control. The added weight can also aid with more of a down blow and prevent thin shots. Even as an average golfer who barely swings 90mph with the driver, using strong lofted high tech Japanese clubs have always resulted in good distance. My VG3 Forged Irons were pretty long at 155y for the 7 iron, however because of my swing I was not always on target. Distance is great but accuracy in golf is even better. The problem is we all love distance and can never get enough of it so I had to swallow my pride and think maybe its time to stop going for the lightest shaft and strongest lofts… at least to some extent. I had an older set of 2009 Burner Forged sitting around which I decided to use to see whether heavier and stiffer would work for me. I decided to install Crazy’s Black CB-02 Iron shaft in Regular Flex. The CB-02 is 99g and while still regular flex, plays much like steel or a heavier SR flex. I’ve always played irons with 5 iron specs in the 24* loft, 350-360g range. The Burner with CB-02 has 5 iron specs of 26* and 401g. The additional 40+ grams of weight is quite noticeable even though swing weight is still around D1.
I also had an unused first generation 17* Spoon here still wrapped in plastic. It’s a 17* with the very soft Japanese senior flex M-35 which is certainly too soft for me. I decided to reshaft with a Rombax 7V05 I happened to also have here. The Rombax V is a great control shaft for those who have problems with direction. Its low torque and slightly stiffer profile help control and accuracy. The 7V05 in R flex weighs a nice and heavy 69g vs the stock egg shaft of around 45g. I tipped the shaft 0.5″ for the Spoon and trimmed the butt down to a 42.5″ finished club length. This finished the club at 324g D0, and 276cpm versus the stock numbers of 298g, C6 and around 225cpm. Now even for an 4 wood/strong 5 wood loft, 276cpm is quite stout for an R flex and its probably closer to a stiff. It feels very solid and I can’t wait to see how it plays. I feel very confident swinging the club. I did get a chance to hit the Burner Forged/Crazy combo at the range over the weekend and while I noticeably had less distance thanks to weaker lofts and heavier weight, shots were very straight and very solidly hit. I was not pulling my shots at all.
At the end of the day whether a players swing changes or not, it is still about being fit for the right clubs. We shouldn’t have to change our swing to fit the clubs we buy, but we should all find clubs that fit not only our swing and playing style but skill level as well. Its the best way to enjoy the difficult but rewarding game of golf to its fullest and get a good score along the way. Tomorrow when I play my round at Hirakawa I’ll see if I’m on the right track. Will report back soon after the round.
They are sold out at the moment, because of Akira’s unique business model of only building clubs for their own tour players and the left overs being sold to the public they have run out of Tour Wedges. I’m awaiting an update from them to see If and when more will be produced.
I was not very happy about this so what Akira has done is offer us their latest unadvertised unnamed wedge. Not sure what we should call it and I don’t know how long it will be available. I know frustrating isn’t it. I decided to post pics anyway and to write this blog post to let everyone know that if you purchase the Tour Wedge in the proshop that you will be emailed the option of these rare beauties to replace it.
It’s a purdy wedge, I haven’t hit it yet, It’s a RAW head so it will wear but it’s also a heavier head for tour use. It’s basically their H1 series with an RTG finish and slightly different stampings. Just wanted to let everyone know. And for those waiting on the M215 #3 wood those should be in any day now.
Crazy has provided me with official info on the new Target Tour Steel shafts from their new Crazy Sports line. There will be two different finishes as well as two different weights for irons and wedges. I had thought that Crazy was using some sort of steel and carbon mix however it turns out that Crazy is using a proprietary technique derived from ancient Japanese sword making to control the hardness and shape of each Target Tour steel shaft. By controlling the hardness via high frequency heat, Crazy actually stops short of completely hardening the shaft. Like a Japanese Katana/sword, it gives the shaft the proper flexibility yet firmness for optimal feel and performance. Crazy has designed the Target Tours to have the consistency of steel but the playability and feel of carbon. This tedious process involves much more work for each individual shaft but at the same time gives each shaft much more attention to detail, thus more consistent performance.
All mid kicking Target Tours are taper tip 0.355″ and will be available in two finishes, a standard silver finish and an upgraded dark chrome finish. The Tour 120 is a 123g and available in Stiff/Regular, Stiff, and X-Stiff. There is also a Tour Lite 105 is 106g with Regular or Stiff Flexes. The Target Tour 120 is for the faster and stronger player wanting a stable mid trajectory ball and a shaft with good feel and consistency. The Target Tour 105 is for the slightly slower swinger who wants a slightly higher launch and the feel of carbon in a a 100g+ steel shaft.
There are two Target Tour Wedge shafts, the Tour Wedge 120 or 121g Wedge Flex or Tour Wedge 110 which are 111g wedge flex.
Pricing is as follows for the shafts, any model in Silver Finish is 120.00 per shaft (MSRP 140.00), while Dark Chrome Finish models are 150.00 (MSRP 170.00) per shaft. We are taking pre orders now so contact us if you would like to reserve a set.
UPDATE: Clarified a few things with Crazy. All shafts are 0.355″ taper tips. Butt size is 15.25mm or 0.600″. The Target Tours are all mid kick. There was some confusion with the color, the silver looking finish is actually the standard finish and the darker Dark Chrome Finish is the more expensive finish.
Crazy has officially announced their new CRZ-435II driver which will be released late August to early September. A joint design with JBeam and manufactured by JBeam for Crazy, the new 435II becomes the new flagship driver for Crazy. 200 pieces will be available at launch and Crazy already expects them to be sold out. While the face of the driver appears similar to the original model except it now has a black IP finish, the sole has change radically incorporating a 3 interchangeable weight design to allow for alteration of the head’s CG point and bias. The CRZ-435II has a traditional shape and the following specs:
Material: 2.PCS BODY-6A-4V + FACE-DAT55G cold forged in Japan
Head Size: 445cc
Face Angle(°): +0.5 closed to -1 Open
Gravity Angle: 21.5°
CG Length: 33.5mm
CG Depth: 36.mm
CG Height: 35.mm
Face Height: 56.mm
Hosel Depth: 45.mm
Finish: Black IP
The new CRZ-435II is once again touted as a low spin distance driver with great stability. Its predecessor the original CRZ-435 was considered the longest driver in Japan in 2010 especially for the faster and harder swinger. Crazy believes the new 435II is a big improvement and we can’t wait to see if it truly is!
Apparently almost 75% of the initial 200 pieces of 435II heads have already been spoken for in Japan so if you would like to order a head, please contact us now to reserve.
The other day Geotech Golf sent over a box of new clubs for me to check out including the new GT Forged Tour Issue Bite V2 wedge. When talking to Yaita-san, head of sales over at Geotech, he was very proud of this new model and confident in its performance. Taking it our of the box I loved the way it looked so I rushed out to test the wedge right away. At that point I realized my Nikon DSLR was not with me as its currently at Sigma Japan having my lenses calibrated to match the body. So in order to take pictures for today’s review I used the trusty old Panasonic GF1.
Geotech as many of you know is Japan’s leading components club maker. They have long worked hard to create high performance clubs without breaking the customers wallet. They have a long hist0ry in designing and manufacturing quality woods and irons and provide some of the best cost performance heads available in Japan (you can read more about Geotech’s history here). When it comes to overseas sales however, even Geotech has been affected by the ultra strong yet. Their very attractive pricing has taken a hit from the Yen’s climb over the last 3 years. Outside of Japan, Geotech has seen their prices rise along with the Yen by nearly 30% in the last 3 years. Even with this increase, Geotech is still very well priced against most other JDM brands that have also seen similar price increases.
Dual Sole Design…
The GT Forged Bite V2 is Geotech’s flagship wedge and bears the “Tour Issue” name. This designates the fact that the wedge has new conforming USGA grooves, not that it is a wedge from the Japanese tour (though it certainly is designed to look like it). The Bite V2 is a small sized, tear drop shaped wedge aimed at the better player looking for maximum spin control and direction. Forged in Japan from S25C steel for that premium soft feel, the Bite V2 features an all new dual sole with trailing edge relief and a cut away heel. The cut away heel reduces contact with the ground and improves stability and direction allowing for more pure impact. More pure impact equals better feel and more spin. The heel area also allows for the wedge face to be opened up in various lies and still aim right at the target.
Better players will appreciate the Bite V2’s amount of offset or lack there of. It’s very straight neck flows right into its slightly rounded leading edge. It’s high toe and tear drop shape will allow better players to work the ball up the length of the face creating huge amounts of spin and stopping power. It’s durable plated all satin finish is just as appealing to the eyes as the way the wedge sets up at address. The head is not ultra compact but probably more on the small side. Improving golfers will still feel confident enough at address to play this wedge while better players will look at the GT Bite as an accurate attacking weapon.
More Lines More Bite…
Another key design point of the Bite V2 is its scorelines. With the new USGA Groove rule reducing spin on all new wedges, Geotech wanted to find a way to create more bite. Their research with several Japanese pros found that by reducing the distance interval between scorelines and thus increasing the amount of scorelines on the wedges face, more spin is created thanks to a larger amount of grooves making contact on the ball. More friction caused equals more bite and more spin, much like a milled faces on wedges except in this case its more scorelines.
The sole of the Bite V2 is not ultra thin and is slightly rounded with its trailing edge relief. Its more of a balanced wedge for all conditions. Unlike many other JDM wedges which cater to the lush and soft courses of Japan with higher bounce soles, the Bite V2 has lower bounce across all its models with all lofts having 5* of bounce except the 56 and 58 sand wedges which have 10* of bounce. Couple that with its wide variety of lofts, 48 50 52 54 56 58 60 and 62, there are many options for each player and the wedge makeup they want to use.
Head Only or pick your shaft…
The tester I received was a 58/10 with an ATTAS 95 Spinwedge shaft. Another Great thing about Geotech is that they are not only available as heads only but will also be built to customer spec by Geotech for the customer with any shaft and grip available in Japan. With graphite iron shaft technology and materials always improving, more and more irons and wedges these days are shafted with carbon. I am a big fan of graphite as it produces very good feel and feedback and has many weight advantages over steel. The ATTAS is a nice match for the soft forged head of the Bite V2 and feel is very pure. The slightly rounded leading edge and dual sole allowed me to hit very clean shots and I really enjoyed the feel of this wedge along with the way it looks at address. As for spin, I am no pro and creating back spin is always quite a challenge for the average golfer. I’m glad to say though that when I tried hard enough to run the ball up the length of the wedge face to create maximum friction I could create enough spin to stop the ball on the spot.
Even with the huge increase in Japan’s currency, the GT Forged Tour Issue Bite V2 wedge is still under 100.00 per head. It’s good value for a Japan forged top performance wedge that can then be custom made to each players specs. As I said I’m happy with the way it looks and feels and performs, I’m now just trying to figure out a way to fit one in my bag and what shaft I should use with it! Look for the new Geotech Bite V2 in the pro shop this weekend!
My demo time is almost up with the new PRGR egg clubs for 2011 so I thought I’d share some final thoughts on the clubs after several range sessions and playing 2 rounds with them. Just to recap, Pro Gear’s egg line is their max distance and ease of use line designed for the average golfer. Even though the eggs target mid to higher handicappers and those average golfers, many lower handicappers and even pros have used egg clubs – especially the egg Spoon. Next Saturday, PRGR will begin shipping the new egg line for 2011 which includes the eggbird driver, the egg i+ utility and the New egg iron all of which I’ve spent about 10 days with.
The eggbird is full of potential
Its difficult to compare the eggbird driver with the original egg Impact driver as they are so different and have different purposes in mind. The new eggbird has a ton of potential. It’s very forgiving, easily launches the ball high and feels and sounds pretty good. It’s built for max carry and distance and increased swing speed and ease of use. It certainly does live up to what it boasts. My only gripe and this is a personal thing is that at 46.5″ (actually like many drivers today), its not that easy to square up to the sweet spot (which luckily is quite wide). Though if the club were any shorter then that would defeat the purpose of its design. The longer length is meant to increase swing speed after all. So when it comes to the egg drivers, if you have no troubles playing a longer length ie over 46″ driver and want more distance, and forgiveness, then the eggbird is your calling. If you struggle with control and hitting the sweet spot, and your primary goal is keeping it straight, the egg Impact is probably a better choice.
The surprising egg i+ Utility
The most surprising club for me might be the egg i+ hybrid. At first I thought, okay PRGR just made the long egg irons hybrids, but they are in fact quite different from the iron. The materials are different and while the concept of design is similar tweaks are made to indeed make the i+ a utility/rescue type club. The wider sole is great, in though lies and when you don’t have or cannot make your optimal swing, it is forgiving. The i+ sets up like an iron allowing pretty good accuracy but when you swing it and hit the ball its much more like a utility wood. Besides the different materials, the hollow face area actually has some pop to it. Hollow driving irons and hollow cavities can sometimes be accused of feeling dead or very muted. This is not the case for the egg i+ as the ball jumps off the face like hitting a titanium fairway wood only in this case, the i+ is maraging steel. Even though the face is quite shallow and the weight very low thanks to the huge sole, I found the trajectory of the 4+ 21* to be quite penetrating and strong, these egg i+ clubs will go and run. I am seriously considering one for my bag for the rest of the summer.
The New egg Iron
The New egg Iron is technically in its 4th iteration (if you count the egg forged) so the question is how much can it improve or change. Firstly, the iron does not quite have the same feel as the utility, it uses a different maraging material and the face is solid versus the hollow face of the i+. So while the New egg iron doesn’t feel like a traditional forged or sus iron, thats not to say it does not feel good, its just different. Its a feeling some people may have to get used to. Performance wise there is no denying that its easy to hit high and far thanks to its design. Longer lengths, stronger lofts, huge cavity and very low weighting all make for an ultra forgiving iron with unmatched distance. PRGR touts its New egg iron as the 150 yard 9 iron clubs. I could not quite hit the 9 iron to 150 yards (around 145 for me) but nevertheless the performance is quite amazing. If you don’t mind a unique feel and want maximum distance and ease of use, there are not many irons that can keep up with the New egg iron. So back to my question, is the New egg iron an improvement over the egg II? It is just as good if not better but for those with the egg II already it may not be a noticeable upgrade. For those new to egg irons, the New egg Iron is the way to go.
The Legendary Spoon…
I’ve actually had my egg Spoon demo for nearly a year so while its not part of the new 2011 lineup – it is still a current model – I thought I would throw it in here anyway. It is still one of the most unique clubs on the market and yes it does make a swoosh sound like a katana sword when you swing thanks to its aerodynamic design. But the bottom line is the egg is easy to hit long and straight and its distance is always top of the class which is why it is favored not only by average golfers but even top pros on the Japanese tour. A fairway wood that rivals your driver in distance is what the Spoon is touted as and it certainly lives up to that reputation. Many customers of TSG game the Spoon and were very happy with the feel and sound changes of this latest generation. If there was any one quirk that people looked at negatively it may be that the Spoon’s face is almost too shallow making it more difficult, or dangerous for that matter, to tee off with. However the egg Spoon is still a monster off the deck and for those needing super long second shots, there aren’t many fairway woods that can match it distance wise.
Pro Gear has done a great job at evolving what is already one of the most radically designed and high tech lineups in golf with the egg line. They’ve gone far enough that an average golfer could build a bag filled with egg clubs and be quite happy with its ease of use and performance. Afterall the bottom line is hitting it straight and long which makes golf a lot more fun. PRGR’s egg line will certainly help you do that. I’ll be getting the pre orders for the new eggs up in the pro shop this weekend. I sure wish I could keep the demos for a whole year. (^_^)
Within 3 hours of landing in Tokyo on a 16 hour flight from Las Vegas, Tatsuro who you frequently see testing clubs in videos on the blog here, was teeing off with me at Hirakwa Country Club. Although jet lagged and tired from the long flight, he was happy to get in a round with my neighbor Hayashi-san and I before the Japan Tour Qualifying Tournament begins next week. The JGTO qualifying rounds are the Japan equivalent of the PGA Tour’s Q school.
The weather was hot and humid after a night of heavy rain and the greens were on the heavy side with much less run in the fairways which were very very soft today. It rained on us several times during the round as well which actually helped us cool down. During the first 9 holes Tatsuro who was playing from the Black/Champions tees, while we played the regular tees, Tatsuro was once again getting used to playing in Japan where the courses differ quite a bit from the ones in Vegas (and waking up after the long flight). The soft lush fairways and heavily tree lined holes are a bug change from more wide open, firmer fairways and greens of Vegas.
Even though on some holes, the Champions tee plays 50-60 or more yards behind the regular tee, Tatsuro was consistently outdriving both Hayashi-san and I with very penetrating and straight drives from his J-Beam 425 Tour – Bangvoo 787 combo. And as you can see in the above picture, standing next to me Tats is not a big guy (I am 5’4″ at best). He has nice compact and explosive swing which makes great contact no matter what the club or lie. I guess that is the difference between a near pro player and an average golfer. Playing the course for the first time and with 7100y in length (Hirakawa is a Championship course home to the Fujifilm JPGA Senior Open), Tats finished with a 74 which I thought was pretty darn good considering he just got off the plane coming from the other side of the world. We certainly wish him luck next week and hope to play again soon!
Took some snaps as well of his swing which I could only dream of having (keep in mind I did not catch his finish as the camera only does 30 successive shots and ran out before he finished his swing).
I had the chance to play the new PRGR eggbird at Nouvelle GC on Tuesday and it was also a good opportunity to compare it head to head with the Ryoma D-1 Premia out on the course. Both drivers are very similarly spec’ed at 46.5″ long and 10* for the eggbird and 10.5* for the Premia. Both have similar target audiences and strong points, made for the player wanting maximum distance and forgiveness. So how does the new PRGR eggbird compare to one of this years distance kings in the Ryoma D-1 Premia?
The PRGR egg bird driver is of course part of PRGR’s egg line which was created just over 3 years ago, a line targeting the average golfer with distance performance and ease of use. The egg line quickly grew in popularity dominating distance performance especially with its egg Spoon 13 15 and 17* woods. Even several top flight Japan tour pros like Shingo Katayama and Hideto Tanihara were bagging the egg Spoon. Based on the Spoon’s concept, PRGR had come out with its first generation egg Impact driver. The egg Impact was a 43.5″ driver made to increase smash factor and control. The idea was increased average distance thanks to more fairways hit. I tested and played the egg Impact and without a doubt it was easy to hit straight but I felt the 43.5″ resulted in too much distance lost and I was not a fan of the feel of the original egg Impact.
A focus on distance and forgiveness
The new PRGR eggbird driver is quite the opposite of the old egg Impact. It is a whole 3 inches longer and nearly 50g lighter! The 46.5″ length and the ultra light weight are for the sole purpose of increasing swing speed. Manufacturers have done studies with findings that apparently show for every extra inch in length and increase in swing speed of 1.6-2.0 m/s is possible. That means that by going from a 45″ driver to a 46.5″ driver, a player could theoretically increase their overall swing speed by 2.4 to 3.0 m/s or 5.5 to 6.8 mph. AND going from 43.5″ to 46.5″ possibly 11mph to 13.6mph increase in speed. The Ryoma D-1 Premia has a similar idea when it comes to length and weight. the Premia is also 46.5″ and while lightweight at 282g, it’s still 20g heavier than the eggbird which is a featherlight 261g. As for the head designs, the PRGR eggbird is quite modern and high tech looking with an advanced looking sole featuring carbon webbing and multiple finishes. The Premia is is subtle with its gold IP sole (if you want to call gold subtle that is). The eggbird is considerably shallower than the Premia which actually has more of a classic high back head. The shallow head of the eggbird pushes the CG deep and back in the head while the higher back Premia doesn’t have as low a CG it’s also quite deep thanks to its huge 60g back weight.
Shallow face for the average golfer
The shallow face of the New PRGR eggbird favors miss hits towards the toe and heel, typical average golfer misses while the mid deep face of the Premia is still good for shots missed high and low on the face. The hosel lengths and bores are also quite different on both heads. The eggbird has a considerably shorter neck to create stability for its larger flatter high MOI head and aids in placing the CG lower while the Premia has a longer neck and higher insertion depth creates a more active tip area and brings the CG to a higher point.
Confident at address
At Nouvelle GC, I decided to alternate between drivers through the round. Before even hitting the ball, there are quite big differences between the two. The eggbird really does feel featherlight in the hands and for some people it might feel too light. Even the girls I was playing with picked up the driver and were so surprised at its weight asking me if it was a ladies driver. The Premia feels light but not nearly as light thanks to a higher swing weight as well. Secondly at address the eggbird,which does have the egg alignment mark, looks quite a bit larger than the Ryoma, and this was not a bad thing as I felt very confident at address with the eggbird driver. The Premia at address looks much more traditional. For face angles as you can see above, the eggbird is very obviously closed. PRGR has done this to counter the longer length and because in their studies, the majority of average golfers battle the slice and right side. For some people the face angle may be distracting but I didn’t even think about it when using the driver. The eggbird needs to be tee’ed up a little bit lower thanks to the ultra shallow face.
Pretty good sound and feel…
On to feel and impact. The Ryoma’s are one of the softer feeling drivers on the market and they have very good pop to them. On the first hole I used the PRGR eggbird and at impact it got everyone’s attention. It was not super loud but on the louder side and in my opinion it actually sounds pretty good. The eggbird makes a higher pitched tink at impact and right away my playing partners proclaimed, that sounded like you hit it well. With the Black IP face, its easy to see where you hit the ball and on the first hole I was off center towards the heel which did not surprise me as I simply am not very good at puring long length drivers off the sweet spot. The good news is even missing the center, feel was very good and quite springy and the ball still weight high and straight with pretty good distance carrying about 220y. It’s not Epon or Ryoma type feel but still feels pretty good.
Trajectory wise, the egg launches on the higher side. Even at 10* it launched higher than the 10.5* Premia which had a mid trajectory with a bit more run. It’s deep low CG is designed to do this and create a max carry ball. After playing a few holes with both 46.5″ drivers, I began to get more consistent striking around the sweet spot. The eggbird hit in the center area goes very straight rather high and carries a lot. Due to its 46.5″ length, I did not miss once on the toe, all my misses were towards the heel and I was not punished for any of them, with every shot still landing in the fairway. It’s pretty close if not equal in forgiveness horizontally across the face as the Ryoma which I consider the most forgiving driver today. My worst shot was probably a bit of a push doe to not squaring the face at impact (darn I wish this was a 45.5″ driver!). I did not pull or hook any shots as I find a long driver harder to hook or pull.
It’s 46.5″… Yes it is.
Throughout the round at no time did I ever feel like I wanted to dedicate myself to only one of the drivers meaning I was equally enjoying hitting both the eggbird and Premia. After the round I sat down and thought long and hard on what I thought about the eggbird. I know what a Ryoma driver can do at both 46.5″ and 45.25″ as I own both and hit the 45.25″ length better as I’m more consistent with the shorter length. I really liked hitting the eggbird at 46.5″ but couldn’t help think what if the driver was a bit shorter at say 45.5″ or even 46″? This of course is a personal preference thing. Many golfers out there have no problems hitting a longer length driver and in turn will reap the rewards of extra carry and distance. Even though I wish it were a shorter length, the thing is, it is designed the way it is. It’s meant to be ultralight weight and 46.5″.
I like it.
The bottom line is I like the New eggbird driver. It is very forgiving, has very good distance and feel. Looks pretty darn good and is nearly HALF the cost of the Premia. This driver has a lot of potential and average golfers and slower swingers should not hesitate to consider it especially if they have no issues hitting a 46.5″ driver. I really don’t want to return this demo and I want to play it again. (^_^)
The PRGR eggbird is available only in 10 and 11* lofts with M-35 (a strong ladies flex) M-37 (R2 – soft R) M-40 (Regular) and M-43 (Stiff/Regular) flexes. At this point I don’t know if custom shafts are available but I’ll talk to our PRGR rep about it. It gets released on Augusts 6th so look soon for the pre-order in the pro shop!
If you did, your lucky… Last week we found out that only 50 sets were produced worldwide. I knew they were limited but not in such minimum quantities.
The RB247 was built to order with custom shaft paint colors and a variety of colored grip options. I was able to hit a friend and customers set in July and although being cast and not forged these were pure pleasure. Forgiveness was obviously the main objective while at the same time keeping a semi compact, low offset players CB. The undercut cavity and sole grind made these.
These are the types of products that make what we do so rewarding. At any time on TSG we offer a variety of extremely limited products that when sold out will never become available again. The RB247 slid right by me, I was expecting at least 500 sets produced.
Special Thanks to Daiwa Japan for allowing TSG to sell these exclusively.