This site is the most comprehensive collection of golf shaft reviews ever assembled. It contains both objective measurements and subjective opinions of fitters and club testers. The reviewers are full time golf club fitters, many rated by Golf Digest as the best in the USA. The testers are are great ball strikers.

Golf Club Fitting requires an intimate knowledge of the golf shaft. Fit2Score, a Dallas Fort Worth golf club fitting company brings many years of club fitting experience to these reviews. While there is no measuring standard for comparing golf shafts, this golf club shaft review site applies a uniform measurement system to all of the shafts reviewed. During the 12 years I have been professionally fitting and building golf clubs I evolved through a few systems for comparing golf shafts. Through experience and with the advice of other golf club fitters and golf shaft designers, I developed my own measurement instruments and standards.

Use the category selections on the right to sort and filter the content. The Golf Shaft Technology category explains the terms used in the shaft reviews. What you see here is the tip of the iceberg of a knowledge base available to the Fit2Score affiliated golf club fitters. What started as a database of the shafts used by a small group of fitters has expanded into a extensive overview of golf shafts. If the shaft you are interested in is not currently listed, check back, we will get to it shortly. And send me a note that you would like to see it reviewed. 

Please share your experience with a shaft in the comments. And don’t forget to let Google know you recommend this site to others.

Golf Digest 2013 Americas 100 Best transparent.fwRuss Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

Graphite Design Tour AD MJ Golf Shaft Review

Graphite Design Tour AD MJ Driver Shaft

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

GraphiteDesignADDJ_Image
The sixth version of the Graphite Design Tour AD driver shaft line releases shortly. We got an early look at the 10 shafts in the MJ series. They range from 53 grams to 87 grams uncut. The profile is consistent through out the weigh range, each weight/stiffness increment has exactly the same bend profile. They simply get heavier, stiffer and have lower torque.

Since the original Tour AD DI, the Graphite Design AD DI series has had a mid shaft stiffness ‘bump’. Each model has varied the degree and position of this mid shaft stiffness design.
GraphiteDesignADMJ_compareThey have all started with a relatively stiff butt section. This is the first to soften the handle. The overall design of the shaft is very similar to the 2014 Tour AD-MT design as you can see in this illustration. Is has a softer butt. In my fitting experience this design, soft butt / stiff mid is a good fit for a player that starts the downswing with a good hip move with a stable upper body. The soft butt loads for the golfer whose transition force is generally down the shaft. He takes this stored energy to a strong mid swing shoulder turn where the mid shaft stiffness stabilizes the shaft in preparation for the elbow and wrist uncocking. I would expect many good players that have been under whelmed with the Graphite Design AD family will find this one adds a little distance along with dispersion control.

GraphiteDesignADMJ EiDfTbLike all the Graphite Design Tour AD shafts, the radial consistency is excellent, averaging 99% with a 0.5% standard deviation. The softer butt stiffness in the profile is not reflected in the overall stiffness of the Tour AD MJ. I would have expected a mid low launch propensity from the butt to mid section design. However, the tip is a litte softer than other shafts with this butt/mid stiffness relationship. That will add to launch, especially with the bling load heavier driver heads that have become popular recently.

Mark Maness tested it at The Golf Center at the Highlands, one of the two DFW ranges where Fit2Score conducts club fittings. Before you watch Mark’s comments this is a summary of the FlightScope results:GraphiteDesignADMJFlightScope

MarkMSkyProDriverSwingStart

We are in the early days of using a SkyPro, a 6 degree of freedom, accelerator gyroscope that attaches to the golf shaft. Mark mentioned he tugs the club at the start of the downswing. His initial load on the shaft is down the length of the shaft as he get the club into motion with his body rotation. This is what that motion looks like on SkyPro. And it is this motion that I find best fits into shafts that have soft butts relative to the mid section of the shaft. The Tour AD-MJ brings that profile to the Graphite Design Tour AD lineup.

KBS C-Taper Lite Parallel Golf Shaft

KBS C-Taper Lite Parallel

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas
KBS CTLite Parallel Image

Parallel shafts have been a favorite of club builders with frequency machines for much of the time I have been engaged in club building. My involvement with a group called the PCS introduced me to the concept of frequency matched shaft sets. Before I developed an understanding of EI measurement, I was and avid practitioner of frequency matching. As I developed an understanding of the golf shaft through EI, I switched to using constant weight taper shafts exclusively. It is only recently, in the preparation of this review and another parallel shaft that I developed a new appreciation for the genre. For a full discussion, read the article Parallel vs Constant Weight Shafts.
KBS CTLiteParallelEISetLets take a look at the set profiles of the Parallel vs Taper versions of the KBS C-Taper Lite S flex. The factory trimed constant weight shafts ascend uniformly from tip to butt while the parallels are compressed at the tips and the butts.
KBS CTLite ParallelTipsLets take a closer look at the tips of these two sets.You can see the compression of tip stiffness that is common to most parallel shaft designs. As someone reminded me a few days ago, there was a time when a lot of the top PGA tour players played Rifle shafts. Another Kim Braly design.

As you look that the magnified tip sections you see that the profile of the constant weight set is the same on the 3 iron and on the wedge. The profile of the parallel set changes. The wedge shaft is straighter going to the tip, the 3 iron shaft is for want of a better term more curved. It is the difference near the tip that creates flighting in a set.

KBS CTLite ParallelvsRifleAs I mentioned the Royal Precision Rifle it ooccurred to me it would be interesting to compare the C-Taper Parallel to the Rifle. If you miss your Rifle’s, it looks like they are back. Not exactly, but very close.

KBS CTLite ParallelEiDfTbLike all the KBS shafts I have measured, the Radial Quality is exceptional. In the chart above the Butt Stiffness values were taken from the from the recommended 6 iron cut. The rest of the numbers are from the uncut 42″ shaft. With the exception of the R flex, the overall butt stiffness is similar to the taper tip version. If you build MOI matched iron sets, the parallels will require extra weight in the hosel than the tapers.

Parallel Iron Shafts

Parallel Iron Shafts vs Constant Weight Tapers

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

There are two types of iron shafts, factory trimmed sets and parallel shafts. The unitized parallel tip shaft was introduced by True Temper is the early 70’s. That was long before my involvement with golf gear so I will not make any attempt to discuss the history. This article will start with a brief explanation of the two shaft types and then discuss what I see using EI measurements. If you are a golfer and not a club builder I will lay out some background knowledge for give you a fundamental understanding of iron shafts. If you are a club builder and have not seen one of my presentations about parallel shafts, this article presents a unique understanding of the properties of parallel shaft sets.

Factory Trimmed Iron Shaft Sets

Sets of shafts are available cut to length from the shaft manufacturer. The shafts in the set are labeled with the iron they are designed for, 3, 4, 5, etc. The set is trimmed in 1/2 increments. The 4i shafts is 1/2 inch shorter than the 3i shaft, the 5i is 1/2 shorter than the 4i and so on. This photo is of such a set, 4i – wedge.ConstantWeightTaperSet
ConstantWeightTipsIn a set like this, the distance between the tip and the first step is where you will see the 1/2 inch increment. The longer iron shafts have longer tips, making them ‘softer’. than the shorter iron shafts with stiffer tips. This is to synchronize stiffness in the set. Long iron heads are lighter than short iron heads. The shorter tips match with the heavier heads, increasing tip stiffness as the weight of the heads get heavier.

Most factory trimmed sets are called Constant Weight Tapers. The tips are .355″ diameter and are tapered to fit into tapered iron hosels. This taper makes trimming the tips prohibitive, although it is possible to make small tip trim adjustments on taper tip shafts. Constant weight refers to each shaft in the set being approximately the same weight even though they are different lengths. This is a big issue in creating overall shaft balance in either swing weight or MOI matched sets of irons.

Not all factory trimmed iron shaft sets are tapered, some are parallel. Nippon offers the entire NS Pro series in either .355 taper tips or .370 parallel tips.

Not all factory trimmed iron sets are constant weight. The True Temper XP and Dynamic Golf Progressive sets get lighter as they get shorter.

Parallel Iron Shafts
ParallelSetBlanks

Parallel Iron shafts come from the factory at a single length. This is a set of KBS Tour C Taper Lite Parallel Shafts. The word Taper is not exactly correct, like all parallel shafts the tips are .370. These shafts are designed to be tip cut 1/2 inch per shaft, then butt cut to length.
KBSCTLParallelSetThis creates a set as shown to the right, illustrated from the Fit2Score set documentation software. The raw shaft weighed 106 grams. The first cut brings it to 95 grams in a 3 iron and each successive cut of 1/2 inch from the tip reduces the weight about 1.3 grams with the wedge shaft weighing 86.4 grams.

Creating MOI or Swing Weight matched sets requires additional weighting in the head to get the desired dynamic weight. The dynamic weight of the parallel shafts in this example drop 25% from the 3 iron to the wedge. In a set of constant weight shafts this loss would be half of that.

Parallel Set ConstructionLets take a look at the design of a typical parallel shaft. They are designed to be cut from the tip to create different lengths. In doing so, the stiffness is increased by moving the mid section of the shaft closer to the tip. The tip is the softest part of the shaft. As it is cut away, the shaft becomes stiffer. The mid section, where the shaft loses stiffness slides closer to the tip.

But look closely, what else are we seeing. The bend profile of the shaft is changing. We are creating a flighted shaft set. The longer shafts will have a propensity to launch higher while the shorter shafts will launch lower that is the essence of what is called a flighted or a progressive launch set of shafts.

ConstantWeightKBSTourXCompare the profiles of this set of KBS Tour Constant Weight Taper shafts to the set of the parallel shafts above. The constant weight set ascends in stiffness uniformly through out the set. The mid to tip change in stiffness is uniform through out the set.

Viewed from this perspective, sets build from parallel shafts are fundamentally different from constant weigh sets. The change in dynamic weight is not entirely a negative, it must be balanced against the desire to create a flighted set of irons. This brings to mind a story told to me by a PGA Tour shaft company rep many years ago. I was told Greg Norman changed from Royal Precision Rifles, parallels, to another brand of constant weight shafts. He went without a win for a long time. The rep had his caddy recommend that he try going back to the Rifles. He did and went on a streak, winning that week and finishing high for the remainder of the year. That story never made much sense to me at the time. Now, having looked closely at parallel shafts as I rewrite the Fit2Score EI profiling software, the AhHa moment arrived. The typical parallel set is flighted! It is the nature of the beast.

TrueTemperProgressiveEarly in the article I said, “Not all factory trimmed iron sets are constant weight. The True Temper XP and Dynamic Gold Progressive sets get lighter as they get shorter.” The Dynamic Gold Progressive looks to me like the profile of a parallel set. Look at the loss of weight in the set. The True Temper XP115 occupies some middle ground, not as much loss of weight, but certainly to some degree showing flighted launch.

Future reviews of iron shafts will not only show the profiles of the 6 iron as I have in the past. The set make ups will be included.

Fujikura MCI Iron Golf Shaft Review

Fujikura MCI Metal Composite Iron Golf Shaft

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

FujiMCIImage

We are in a new era in iron shafts. Composite shafts have found their way to the PGA Tour. Acceptance of ‘graphite’ shafts by tour pros means serious amateurs will consider playing them. The shaft companies are responding with tour quality composite shafts. The MCI shaft from Fujikura is truly a composite, it is made from graphite with a metal fiber wrapped into the tip section.

The bend profile is seen in many of the current generation of performance orientated iron shafts. It resembles the design seen in driver shafts. Much higher tip to butt rations than we typically see in iron shafts. That is going to create a propensity for higher launch. I confirmed that on a range. A cavity back iron fitted with the MCI launched the same as a game enhancement high launch design head fitted with a traditional bend profile design composite shaft. The feel was much the same. And for those looking for shock absorption, thin ball strikes are muted, the vibration is not transmitted to the hands. If your iron game would be improved by a little extra launch, you should be testing the Fujikura MCI shaft. The tip is similar to a Dynamic Gold S300. A stiffer butt creates a higher tip to butt ratio and a higher launch propensity.

Fuji_MCI_EiGjTb

Radial consistency of the MCI is very good.  The average of our review samples was 99.1% with a 0.6 Standard Deviations. Spine alignment is not necessary with these shafts. Fujikura marks every shaft with one of the flat line oscillation planes and puts the label on that plane. Installing the shafts label down is the equivalent of FLO alignment.

A view of factory cut iron shafts is not complete without looking a the makeup of the complete set. This is the first of many iron shaft reviews that will be updated with this important view of set profiles.

I avoid using the word constant weight tapers because not all cut to length iron sets are constant weigh nor are they tapers. The Fujikura MCI is constant weight, averaging 102 grams uncut, but it is .370 parallel tipped. The set illustrated below is the 100S. The EI profiles ascend consistently from shaft to shaft in the set.

Fuji_MCI_SetEI
To understand this aspect of shaft sets, look at the set profiles of the UST Recoil. By comparing these to set profiles you see why I referred to the UST Recoil as a flighted set. By contrast, the Fujikura MCI is similar to most constant weight steel shaft set profiles.

 

Oban Revenge Driver Golf Shaft Review

Oban Revenge Driver Shaft

Kirk James & Mark Vallier, Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
MK Golf Technologies,San Antonio, Texas

Measurements: Russ Ryden, Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

Revenge Driver Image

In our testing and fitting of the Revenge, the results have been consistent with the EI Bend Profile shown above and Oban’s description of the shaft in their marketing materials. The tip section of this shaft, described as “responsive” by Oban, is definitely softer than the the tip sections of the other shafts in Oban’s line. This “responsive tip” results in a mid-high to mid launching shaft with the launch progressively getting lower as the shaft gets stiffer. The use of ultra premium, high modulus graphite materials provides the typical Oban signature stability and feel. This shaft is both responsive and stable at the same time. It typically launches in the mid to high range with no ballooning and with a flight that stays flat with a good angle of descent. We find that this shaft works best for the player with a smoother tempo and a softer shaft load during the swing. Truly a great feeling shaft for those smooth swingers out there.

Oban_Revenge_EITBTb

Radial integrity of the Revenge review samples was 98.8% with a 1.0% standard deviation. The profiles were consistent through all the weights and flexes. The torque did not change as much as shafts of different weights and flexes traditionally do. The stiffness is indicated primarily by the stiffness number on the shaft. It did not change as shafts typically do as the models got heavier. A 03 flex was about 6.5 lbs, an o4 flex, about 7.5 lbs, and so on. The 85 gram shafts were a little stiffer, but not significantly so as is often the case.

Oban Revenge Hybrid Golf Shaft Review

Oban Revenge Hybrid Golf Shaft

Kirk James & Mark Vallier, Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
MK Golf Technologies,San Antonio, Texas

Measurements: Russ Ryden, Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

Revenge Hybrid ImageThese Revenge hybrid shafts do produce impressive dispersion results in real world testing, especially for shafts in these weight categories. The flight is mid-high to high, but they do not balloon, even in the Texas wind. The use of ultra premium graphite materials ensures a consistent bend profile, better performance and consistent shots. The low torque provides very tight dispersion. The moderately softer tip and butt sections of this shaft provide a responsive feel that never seems boardy. These hybrid shafts are highly recommended for the player with a smooth tempo. I personally play the Revenge 65\04 in two hybrids, and I can honestly say I have never played a more consistent, better feeling, or better performing hybrid shaft. I am constantly amazed at how tight the dispersion is and how flat the trajectory is with a 67 gram hybrid shaft. Consider looking at the Revenge 85 if you are a stronger, slightly more aggressive swinger. This is a very impressive shaft from Oban, and definitely worth your consideration if looking for a hybrid shaft.

Oban_Revenge_Hb_EITBTb

The radial integrity of the review samples was 98.6% with a 0.5% standard deviation. Hoop strength is high indicating very little ovaling is going to occur. Tip/Butt ratios were consistent throughout the range of weights and stiffness.They indicate a mid high launch propensity, decreasing with both weight and stiffness. You must remember, your personal experience will be how your speed and swing characteristics are matched to the weight and stiffness of these shafts. The tip torque numbers are impressive. Certainly not the lowest we have ever seen, but very respectable for shafts in this weight range. In our fitting experience, low tip torque hybrid shafts create tight dispersion groups.

 

Diamama Red Golf Shaft Review

Mitsubishi Diamana R – Third Generation

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

Diamana3Gen_R_Image

The last of the third Generation Mitsubshi Diamana driver shafts released in September 2014. The Diamana ilima, the second generation Diamana Red Board has long been my favorite fairway shafts. The expression, ‘if its not broken don’t fix it, applies the the third generation Diamana R. It changes very little over the second generation design. The butt stiffness is a little softer, allowing for a little more load at the start of the downswing. New material, high modulus 80 ton fiber is use in the hoop wraps in the shaft. In the butt, the hoop strength increases while the stiffness decreases. We are seeing more creative designs in carbon fiber golf shafts. Design is limited by the creativity of the shaft engineer and by the willingness of the golfing public to embrace these new products at ever increasing costs. At $400, the Diamana R, one of the greatest fairway shafts I know of, is beyond the typical $300 price of the off the rack fairway. You get what you pay for, and in this case, in the 70 and 80 gram models, you are paying for tip torque low enough to control the weight of a 3 wood head.

This is a high launch shaft. For those who hit their woods off the turf, where a downward angle of attack is all that is possible, a high launch shaft is a good thing. With a driver, and an upward angle of attack we would seek a lower launching design. But with a fairway, this is my design of choice.

MRC_DiamanaR_TbGr3gMDI

I checked 10 shafts, one of each weight and flex, the average radial consistency was 99.6% with a standard deviation of 0.2%. That is an example of the made in Japan tradition of excellence we have historically seen from Mitsubishi Rayon. This is the first shaft I know of to use 80 ton material. It is too stiff to be used in the linear and bias plies. It is used to create hoop strength. Because it is thin and has no open space like multi axis weaves it creates high hoop strength while leaving the shaft designer the space inside the multi layered wall to achieve the linear and torsional strengths he is seeking to achieve. All while creating a smooth lose of stiffness down the shaft and the unique Mitsubishi feel.

New to third generation Diamana R series are 50 gram shafts. The line between the ultra light driver shafts and light weight versions of standard shafts is getting blurry. The Diamana R series extends the profiles consistently into the 50 gram versions. Those with slower drive swing speeds that need launch and spin can get it without having to accept a high torque tip.

Now that the third generation Diamana release is complete, lets compare the three designs by looking at the 60 gram version of each shaft.

Diamana3Gen_60_RWBThese shafts are not as different as they once were. At least in the 60 gram versions. The Diamana B series was reviewed earlier as was the Diamana W. The profile of the Diamana W changes significantly in the 70 and 80 gram versions. But as you can see here, in the 60 gram version is it just a little higher launching than the Diamana W. The Diamana R is a different shaft. Softer handle, quicker loss of stiffness from mid to tip. All three shafts get stiffer as they approach the tip. If I want a stiffer shaft, I will always simply change to the next step on the stiffness progression, either getting the heavier of the stiffer model before I would consider tipping these shafts.

Graphite Design Tour AD SuperLite Driver Shaft Review

Graphite Design Tour AD SLII Driver Shaft

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

GD_TourAD_SLII_ImageGraphite Design added a light weight shaft to the popular Tour AD Line in 2014. This shaft, like many others in the light weight category, ranges from 50g to 60g, with stiffness corresponding to weight. In this weight range, we see higher torques, but not so high that I would be concerned about head stability. These shafts are designed for swing speeds in the 60 to 85 mile per hour range. The 60g SR flex extends to the 90 mph range. My swing speed in in the high 90’s with the occasional 102 showing up and I am playing an ultra premium 59g shaft. Light weight driver shafts, made out of high quality carbon fiber are the future of golf for many of us. That couple of grams I lost in my latest shaft change has given me a new range of control and feeling without any increase in dispersion. In fact, I am hitting more fairways than I ever have now that I changed to a sub 60g shaft.
GD_TourAD_SLII_EiTBGjFsHpTbRadial integrity of the Graphite Design Tour AD SLII is exceptional, the review samples averaged 98.5% with a 0.4% standard deviation. The hoop strength is high for this weight range, and distinctly different in the 4 vs 5 models. This measurement is new for my knowledge base.

This is a unique design, there is no close match in the database. The tip to butt ratio and the tip load and butt load deflection analysis shows it to be a high launch high spin design consistent with what Graphite Design is saying about the shaft. In the speed range it is designed for, that is what will optimize distance. Tip torque is tight. Butt torque is in the range that transmits adequate feel in light weight shafts. If your swing speed is below 90 mph and you are looking for a quality shaft this is one you should be testing.

Golf Shaft Hoop Strength

Golf Shaft Hoop Strength

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

Hoop_MeasuringHoop strength is discussed endlessly in the marketing of golf shafts but unlike other specifications, we are given no information about actual strength of one shaft vs another. After trying a few methods to measure hoop strength I arrived at the method shown to the right. It is a text book method, place a tube on a firm surface, drop a weight on it and see how much is deforms. I built a small block, slightly higher than the guides used for EI measuring and now have a tool for quantifying hoop strength. If this is a new term for you, follow this link to the AeroTech web site for a discussion. For those readers familiar with the term, you should note that the shaft in this image has some of the highest hoop strength I have yet to measure. It is a pull out that I played many, many years ago before I developed the current passion for understanding the golf shaft. A material called triax was wrapped into the shaft to add hoop strength and eliminate ovaling during the golf swing.

My first attempts to measure hoop strength were to look for ovaling. I clamped a shaft on a deflection device, measured the diameter at different points, bent it 5″ and measured again at those points. The differences were so small I decided there was more noise in the numbers I was reading than the variance I was trying to measure. I could not find .001 inch of difference. That might just make the rest of this article a waste of time, but if you are interested in the concept read on. With the device pictured above, the shaft is compressed with 11 kg and a change in diameter is apparent. The scale on the graphics is .002 inch increments.

Hoop_GraphiteCarbon Fiber Iron Shafts

The focus of this article is iron shafts. I have not yet measured the shafts in my driver fitting system. Lets start by looking at my hoop strength measurements of some popular graphite six iron shafts that I fit with. Graphite wall thickness in heavy iron shafts creates high hoop strength. AeroTech maintains high hoop strength even as the shafts become lighter as a result of the filament winding process they uniquely use and the stainless steel wire wrapped around the shafts.

What you see looking at these charts is that heavy graphite shafts universally have high hoop strength. And even light weight graphite, the 70 gram AeroTech and the 60 gram Fujikura MCI, which also employs a metallic fiber in the shaft walls have high hoop strength.

As you look at these charts, take note that a low number, meaning very small deflection under load, indicates high hoop strength.

Hoop_SteelsSteel Iron Shafts

Now lets compare the hoop strength of some popular steel iron shafts. We immediately see less hoop strength in the butt sections of steel shafts. This is not limited to a particular brand, it is universally true.

What I found really interesting was that the hoop strength profiles were the same shape as the EI profiles. The stiffness of a steel shaft is determined by the wall thickness and the diameter of the shaft.

The material, a steel alloy, is consistent through out the shaft. In contrast, carbon fiber composite shafts material properties can change through out the shaft.

But wait a minute. I looked at both the Modus3 Tour 120 and the Modus3 Tour 130. Both have very different EI profiles. Yet, the hoop strength profiles are similar. Nippon steel has some interesting technology in their production lines.

 

 

 

Hoop_ZelosLight Weight Steel

One final image, a comparison of Ultra Light Steel to high quality light weight carbon fiber iron shafts. Do not come away with the impression that all light weight graphite shafts are going to have hoop strength like the high end shafts you see here. They do not.

 

What does it all mean to your game. I cannot say with certainty at this point how hoop strength manifests itself in shaft stability and dispersion control. Or if it can create kick velocity. Nor can I give you direction on what amount of hoop strength is appropriate for your loading patterns. You are looking at these charts within a week of creation of this addition to my knowledge base. But, at least now we have a measurement platform to begin the discovery process.

Mitsubishi KuroKage Tour Edition TINI Driver Shaft Review

Mitsubishi KuroKage Proto TINI Driver

By Russ Ryden, A Golf Digest America’s 100 Best Clubfitter
Fit2Score, Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

MRC_KuroKage_Tour

The KuroKage Proto TiNi is available only through selected Mitsubishi dealers. I briefly covered this shaft in an earlier review and did not give it the attention it deserves. It is currently in the driver of the #1 player on the PGA tour. His shaft is a custom made version, beyond the 7-XX available to Mistubishi dealers. My friend Biv Wadden has me continuously building drivers for his students with this shaft. When you have as many shafts as I do in my fitting system, some go unnoticed as I tend to fit what I know. Biv’s praise of this shaft got me to take a closer look and start testing the shaft myself.

“For the past year, I’ve been putting most of my competitive students into the KuroKage prototype tour edition shaft with its nickel-titanium tip – in both drivers and 3-woods. It consistently produces higher ball speeds and lower dispersion than any other premium shaft I use.”
Biv Wadden

The result, the Diamana ilima’s, which have had a 3 year run in my fairways have been replaced with KuroKage Proto’s. With a $400 price tag this is not likely to become a best seller. Unless of course you try it and it fits your swing. Here is a look at the shaft measurements from the latest version of the Fit2Score knowledge-base.

MRC__KuroKageProto_EiTBTbRadial integrity of the samples was 99.5% with a 0.3% standard deviation, excellent. Hoop strength was a little lower on the handle end of the 60 gram shafts. The balance is high like most driver shafts now being produced. The profile shows a soft handle, moderate mid, stiff tip design, with a maximum bend in the 14″ region. The lower 12″ of the shaft is wrapped with Titanium Nickel Wire touted by Mitsubishi as able to stretch then immediately regain its original shape. This material is used in the KuroKage Silver, but the Proto has a longer section of the impregnated with the TiNi wire. While both shafts incorporate the TiNi wire, the profiles are about as different as MRC profiles get.

The KuroKage Proto was the first of the heavier shafts to incorporate the TiNi wire that had been used in UltraLight Bassara series of shafts. It was also the first to use 40 ton fiber. Mitsubishi Rayon is now using 80 ton fiber in the hoop layers of the third generation Diamana’s. The Bassara UltraLite Phoenix, released in 2014 is a light weight version of this profile. It adds the lighter weights not offered in the KuroKage Tour Edition shaft.

The profile is very similar to the Diamana ilima. The butt a little stiffer the tip a little softer. It launched much the same for my swing with a little less spin, creating a more boring flight. The 70-XX in the hands of the +110 kids is delivering tight dispersion, with good trajectory and a little lower spin than would be expected for the launch. And that combination, as Biv tells me, equates to distance.