True Temper XP 95 Iron Shaft
The True Temper XP 95 is the first of a new family of iron shafts from True Temper. It is an evolution of the GS series which it will be replacing. Like the GS family, it uses a special steel alloy which has higher tensile strength allowing for lighter weight designs. That alloy has evolved from what True Temper designated as S3 in the GS75 to S5 in the XP models.
True Temper testing and player feedback is addressing the low spin balls designed to deliver driver distance. Those balls do not spin enough to get distance and drop and stop performance on longer irons. To address this, True Tempers current generation of iron shafts are aimed at increasing spin. This is also addressed in the design of the Dynamic Gold Pro progressive launch model also releasing in 2014.
The True Temper XP uses a dual step pattern. Longer steps near the butt of the shaft, shorter steps closer to the tip. The longer steps. smaller changes in diameter per step, are called speed steps by True Temper. The shorter steps create a quicker loss of stiffness in the shaft as it gets closer to the tip. It is this property of the shaft that increases launch. That progressive stiffness loss can be seen in the EI bend profile.
As with other True Temper designs, the stepped section of the shaft has the same EI profile in each profile. The length of the tip to first step changes. This is shown by the shifting of the profiles in the EI Bend Profile graphic. True Temper calls this design player optimized. It has been a success in the Dynamic Gold, a shaft one might call the industry standard. Each shaft profile is specific to the player that is best fit in a particular stiffness. In the True Temper XP models, the weigh change contributes to stiffening the shafts.
I had a chance to talk to Bill Lange, the True Temper Director of Sales, at the 2014 PGA Merchandise show about the XP shafts.
True Temper XP 105 Iron Shaft
The XP 105, available exclusively from Mizuno in 2014 is the first expansion of the XP family of shafts. I am told we will see both 85 and 115 gram versions in the near future.
The two XP 105 shafts in combination with the XP 95 shafts are an interesting fitting matrix. The X version of the 95 is 105 grams. I can see from the profiles a progressive launch set of irons, using the XP 95 X in the shorter irons and the XP 105 in the longer irons.