Sergio Garcia took his first major title playing the Modus3 130 X in his irons. Unlike carbon fiber shafts which change every few years, steel shafts remain available for a long time. They do not get replaced every other year with a new model. New models get added, but the successful designs stay on the market for years. This review of the Modus3 Tour 120 and Modus3 Tour 130 was first published in 2013. I updated it with charts from the current measuring standards. I have fit countless golfers into the Modus2 120. Recently, I was given a head only account by Mizuno and added the 120 and 130 to my fitting cart. I can now fit a shaft I know well, economically, into Mizuno heads. Within days of adding it to my Mizuno cart it is a winner it producing tight dispersion patterns.
After several years of PGA tour testing, the Nippon N.S.Pro MODUS3 was made available to the golfing public in 2010. In 2013, a second version was moved from the tour to the public. There are some unique properties to these designs. One of which is the use of a spring steel alloy. Rather than me tell the story, Here is a video I shot early in my video journalism days that tells the Nippon N.S.Pro Modus3 story. Lee Oyer, the PGA Tour Representative for Nippon is one of the great fitters in golf. His fitting skills are praised by his fellow tour fitters.
The Modus3 profile shows a quick loss of stiffness near the butt and a long stiff tip. It is made from a different grade of steel. It is in the bags of several PGA tour pros and has accumulated a lot of wins since it was first introduced in 2010. It is light, installed weight is around 104 grams. This is where the game is headed and Nippon has developed light weight high performance shafts using materials from their parent companies automotive experience. Here is a look at the linear and radial profiles of the original N.S.Pro Modus3 Tour 120 and the N.S.Pro Modus3 Tour 130 introduced to the public in 2013.
At the 2013 PGA Merchandise Show Demo day, DevotedGolfer.tv editor John Taylor discussed the Modus3 with Hiro Fukuda of NHK Intex Corporation/Nippon Shafts.
In this interview Hiro Fukuda mentions control of wall thickness to shape the stiffness profile of the shafts. This illustration from the Nippon 2013 product catalog illustrates what he is talking about. In a uniform material, steel being a uniform material as opposed to carbon fiber, wall thickness and shaft diameter create the bend profile of the golf shaft. By looking at these images and comparing them to the EI profiles, you can see how wall shape translates to bend profile. Those of us that are affiliated with the Fit2Score EI profile knowledge base like to see manufacturers using EI profiles to explain shafts in their publications. It validates our system when our graphic images closely match those created by the shaft company engineers.
The Nippon Modus3 line released in the US in May 2015, it is available through Nippon Certified Dealers. I got my first look at two pullouts that were used at the PGA merchandise show two months ago. The profile was described to me as splitting the other two versions. The Modus3 profiles are unique. Nippon has put their substantial technical knowledge into the material and fabrication of these shafts.
There have been substantial changes to my measuring software since this shaft was first reviewed in May 2015. This update to the original review is based on remeasuring with the 4 point hoop deformation. It includes DataSheets for the golf professional subscribers.
The N.S Pro Modus3 Tour105 was released to the US public in August 2015. I had seen a set of these earlier in the year, labeled Prototype ST. The Modus3 Tour 105 is the same shaft that has been available on tour for several months. The word Prototype has been replaced with Modus3. I have been told it was put in play by a number of players. Lighter weight iron shafts are gaining broader acceptance in the tour community.
I am revisiting this review with a new look at the charts and numbers. As I prepared graphics for a speech to European club fitters I saw something in the charts that got my attention. A close look at the shafts confirmed what I saw in the graphics.
This is a discussion about Nippon Golf Shaft shot at the 2016 PGA Merchandise show. Be warned, it is a technical discussion between technical fitters.
The English Nippon Shaft site has been significantly updated recently. The update shows and explains the EI profiles of the Modus products. The section of that site that discusses EI profiles is excerpted below. When one of my fitting associates happened on it, I got a call telling me they copied my graphics. I had to explain, sorry, in fact, they were first, I copied them. Nippon and the other major shaft companies have designed and manufactured shafts with 3 point EI software for decades. It is only now, that the golfer and club makers are developing literacy in the language of the shaft engineer. Nippon is one of the few shaft companies that has for many years explained and defined their products to club fitters with EI graphics. The other is Mitsubishi Rayon. The 2015 Fujikura shaft product brochure does the same. This is the language by which one can under the subtle nuances of today’s shaft choices.
I am in the process of rebuilding the Fit2Score shaft knowledge base with 3 iron and wedge profiles. Nippon sent a box full of review samples including the N.S.Pro Super Peening Orange and Blue. I had briefly looked at the Super Peening Blue wedge shafts in the past. They had been suggested as a wedge addition to my fitting system. Readers have asked several times about these shaft so I was interested in getting a full set of measurements of these samples.
The N.S.Pro Super Peening shafts are no longer shown the the Nippon brochures. I had to find a 2008 catalog to see how Nippon presented the shafts. The descriptions there were brief, and the terms used to describe the shafts Orange = Mid Kick Point and Blue = Butt Kick Point brought me back to a time when I was taught to think about shafts with those terms. We were taught back then that the higher the kick point the lower the shaft would launch. My exploration of EI profiles vastly expanded my understanding of a golf shaft beyond things like kick point and frequency matching. As I looked at the measurement of these two shafts I realized they are good examples to discuss the nature of 3 point EI profiles.
Nippon makes a great dedicated wedge shaft, the N.S Pro WV. It was introduced in 2009 and has been one of my custom fitted wedge shafts since that time. It is one of the higher launch, therefore higher spin wedge shafts available. It is offered in three weights which correspond to increasing stiffness. Those weight options align well with the weights of the N.S Pro line of iron shafts. Using the wedge shaft that is just slightly higher than the weight of the iron shafts have proved to be a good fit.