ONOFF / GIII at the 2016 Japan Golf Fair – As usual ONOFF was at the Japan Golf Fair and this year it’s all abuut the new Red Series Woods and AKA irons along with their new FF-247 hybrid iron and a super expensive HR-716 Driver. For those who were looking forward to a black series that will be next year so your Kuro Forged Irons are safe for another season or two. Shall we get started with some pics and a quick run down? Follow the Jump…
ONOFF Labo Frogs Leap Wedge – It’s an interesting concept a 70* wedge that plays to an effective 64* when used as advised. ONOFF has released three lofts 52/64/70 each can be adjusted up to 1* stronger or weaker and the basic premise is you play these closed down a bit and come into the ball square versus across the ball. ONOFF wants players to realizing how it’s used looking beyond it’s loft and not just consider this a normal wedge at 70*.
The 64* and 70* feature a twin cut sole that has variable bounce angles and out near the toe the 70* plays to 24* bounce, toward the heel it’s 12* but center where bounce is usually measured it’s 14* This is something most players don’t take into account when figuring out bounce, that manufactures tend to measure center while a wedge can play totally different from the heel and toe. Ready for more? Follow the Jump Please…
These wedges are cast, finished in satin and mirror, why make a 52* along with a 64 and 70? for the chip and run shot and these wedges are designed to promote better contact and less topping or thin shots around the green.
The photo above shows the club hovering but when it’s placed on the ground it naturally rocks a little closed, you can play the 70* slightly open for 70* loft or open it up further for even more, I’ve tried this and the face just slides right under the ball which would make it great for a short shot from atop a hill going down to a fast green.
The 64* is similar as well, pretty much plays to a 58-60* closed down or a full 64* slightly open, the sole design of the 64* starts at the bounce at the toe with 23* then moving toward the heel 13* and 11*.
The 52* has a different sole grind that the Labo Dept calls Wave Sole yet it’s designed to serve the same purpose providing better turf interaction, allowing the leading edge to sit low near the ground and provide interaction that increases your chances of a better approach shot. TourSpecGolf has these listed in our Online Store and these are shipping well at the moment but keep in mind like all Labo Clubs they are Limited Editions and will be gone as soon as stock runs out. Click Here to Purchase!
In our last blog post we showed you the very limited 358 driver used by Shingo Katayama, now it’s the ONOFF Labo-Spec RB-247G irons and while Shingo doesn’t use these he plays the CB358 Forged Irons, these are still part of ONOFF”s special tour department called LABO.
This is the most forgiving Labo iron made that I can remember and while it’s not forged it’s body is soft cast with a high rebound maraging face, inner tungsten alloy and a resin inside that reduces vibration at impact all finished up in NiCR mirror & satin.
Designed to sit in between the ONOFF Red irons and the Black series I would categorize it as a club for the mid to pro player and someone who is seeking stable trajectory, very long distance and lots of forgiveness without sacrificing much at setup. Follow the Jump to Read On…
LABO SPEC 358 DRIVER – Shingo Katayama is ONOFF Golf’s star player especially with his recent victory at the JPGA Tour’s Casio World Open last month. He collaborates with the Tour Division Labo Spec Department to produce some of the models in the limited edition Labo Spec series and the latest creation from LABO + Katayama-san is the Labo Spec 358 Driver.
I’ve had this driver in the bag for 5 of 6 recent rounds and it’s awesome, long, forgiving, low spin, high trajectory, great feeling which I can confidently recommend to a core group of TSG’ers with no hesitation whatsoever. Follow the Jump for the rest of the photos and review!
ONOFF is stepping up this year, other brands have released nearly a dozen different models i.e Yamaha, Bridgestone etc.. But ONOFF is producing fewer clubs yet have ones that are quality while performing noticeably better than most. Our members loved teh Labo CB358, then the Labo TS358 fairway wood, the ONOFF Kuro Forged was released not long ago and it’s TSG’s top selling iron 6 weeks running as of today and now this wedge…
Our all time best selling wedge is the Yururi Gekku Raw non conforming and more recently it’s been the Titleist Cold Forged Vokey which has been slowing late in the year, I’m hoping people gravitate to this new ONOFF Wedge because when they do they should be very very happy. Follow the Jump for more…
Introducing the ONOFF 2015 Kuro Forged Irons – Every couple of years ONOFF releases an updated version of the model “FORGED” iron and this years looks to be their best version to date. Early at the 2014 Japan Golf Fair TSG got a sneak peak of the CB358 which was designed for JPGA super star Shingo Katayama aka the Japanese Cowboy. The CB358 was very sharp on all edges and lead the pack in this trend of sharpness which is becoming more popular for Japan makers as companies claim it ever so slightly makes the golfer increase their focus and looking back at the CB358 and even the 2013 ONOFF “Forged” iron it now appears that they have blended the two to create the new Kuro Forged.
So I’ve had a good few weeks putting the new Kuro through it’s paces and can say with confidence that It’s impressed me in all areas from it’s looks and feel to it’s forgiveness and distance. In this review I’m going start with the #4 iron then work my way to the #7 ending with the PW to hopefully give everyone a good idea of what to expect.
The #4 iron above shows a couple of things, the first is that the O logo is partially hidden, almost cut in half pushed toward the bottom of the sole, ONOFF in a really cool way was able to use their logo to dial in the center of gravity placement and this is important because you want a lower CG in the long irons to help get the ball up, I just find the way it was done very creative and classy. What you will notice is that as you move toward the shorter irons this squared shape “O” begins to lower which moves the CG higher giving you a more penetrating flight the lower the loft gets. Ready to read more and see a ton more pictures? Follow the Jump…
Every so often an iron is released that wows us, by far the most popular irons of early 2014 has been the CB358by OnOff’s Labo Spec department, Labo Spec is essentially the tour design service and with ONOFF’s #1 tour player being Shingo Katayama they have their hands full.
Shingo Katayama is a very unique player, he demands clubs specially made for him that fit his preference, many are already familiar with the 2013 OnOff forged model which was also a hit here, Shingo loved that iron but wanted something with less offset, sharper angles, and a smaller profile yet while keeping the great feel and extra forgiving performance.
Click Read More to view the rest of the images and for more info…
I can’t remember a time when there has been so many amazing fairway woods on the JDM scene at once, ONOFF’s TS358 is sitting pretty near the top of that list, it’s the model created for the pro by the pro and I’ve put it’s through it paces seen what it can do and the take away it’s definitely one of my top 3 choices. You may be wondering what some of my other favorites are, well in the mix is also the S-Yard XV, PRGR’s latest Egg, Royal Collection 306V and a New Prototype we have yet to reveal made by one of TSG’s favorite shaft companies. In the past ONOFF made some really good shallow faced fairway woods, the description in the TSG Store says its got a semi deep face and I agree it’s also got a low enough center of gravity and a shallow of enough face to make it fairly user-friendly.
Click Read More to Continue…
Roll the clock back 7+ years ago and Japan was still the premier source for non conforming hi COR drivers with pretty much every single brand in Japan having at least one non conforming head in their lineup. Some Japanese brands had heads with COR as high as 0.90, well over the legal limit of 0.83 COR. As 2006 came to a close most major mainstream Japanese brands decided that going forward, all their drivers would conform to USGA and R&A rules meaning hi COR heads became suddenly scarce and hard to find. Fast forward to the present and 2012 saw a resurgence of non conforming Hi Cor drivers. With many brands maxed out at 460cc and the 0.83 COR limit, brands decided that recreational golfers who wanted more distance were willing to pay for hi COR drivers and didn’t care if they were conforming or not since many recreational golfers don’t play in tournaments or competitions.
While a driver’s performance and distance can be attributed to many things, including, materials, design and the ultimately the ability to hit the sweet spot consistently (a big sweet spot helps too), a higher COR can be a quick way to more distance. COR stands for the Coefficient of Restitution and measures the elasticity of the collision between the ball and face at impact. The higher the number or higher the COR the more elastic the collision is. With all things being equal there has always been the debate as to how much impact COR actually has on distance. Some say for a 100mph swing, every 0.01 in COR can result in an additional 4+ yards. As swing speeds increase, that gain also increases. I want to stress again though that the COR of a driver is only one aspect of creating distance and even though there were many great Hi COR drivers back in the mid 2000’s, in my opinion, most conforming drivers today would probably out distance those non conforming drivers of old thanks to better materials, designs and bigger sweet spots and in many cases longer length shafts but we will get into that later.
Tourspecgolf was invited to the ONOFF 2013 New Collection launch so I headed out yesterday to Shibuya to check out all the new gear for the new year. Every year they hold their launch event Ebisu/Daikanyama area which is just south of Shibuya.
While Shibuya is a constantly busy and buzzing area of Japan packed with color, lights, fashion and people, Daikanyama is more old fashioned and along with Ebisu an eclectic mix of different levels of dense residential tightly mixed with new developments and classy boutiques and trendy bars and eateries.