KBS $-Taper Golf Shaft Review

KBS $-Taper Golf Shaft Review

By Russ Ryden, Fit2Score, A Dallas Fort Worth Club Fitter & Club Maker
The Golf Center at the Highlands, Carrollton Texas

STaper Image

Before the KBS $-Taper became available to the public, it had two tour wins. Cameron Smith at the Zurich Classic and Si Woo Kim at the Players. The release to club builders was delayed as KBS tried to new label application process. Eventually, they gave up and cut it loose with the current label process.

This shaft used a different step design from prior KBS shafts. The steps are longer, almost to the point of being hard to see. The discussion of the $-Taper starts at the 8:45 mark in this video shot at the 2017 PGA Merchandise show. Kim describes his objective for this shaft, a variation of the KBS tour that reduces spin. As soon as I finish writing this review I will put tips on the review samples to test the shaft. 

As I measured the $-Taper I had an expectation of what I expected to see, that was not the case.

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Enjoy and Good Golf,

Do not assume you will react to this profile exactly as I did. We are all different and react to shafts and heads uniquely. I must play the 110 gram R flex because I cannot effectively swing a heavier shaft. However, 10 yards is something I need at my age and getting it without adding to roll out is something I will gladly put in my bag. Find a fitter that has added he KBS $-Taper to his fitting cart and test them yourself.

  • ATLMetsfan

    Wonder if you could elaborate on “ever so slightly less crisp.” I always enjoy people describing their feels for shafts. Understandably your idea of crisp might be different than mine but I’m curious if you can put that into any other words.

    • Crisp, go hit some cast iron head, then hit an older forged Mizuno or a Miura, Older meaning before they put the boron into the metal. Crisp is defined by the feeling of the cast head. Silky smooth is defined by the Miura. You can feel the ball and the head become one with the Miura. With the cast head all you can feel is a collision.

      • ATLMetsfan

        Cool I appreciate that, especially coming from a guy who has hit them ALL. Yeah I play MP-4s… as far as I know they’re still all steel, no boron or anything. I think with a head that soft a shaft with a little crispness can almost be a plus – gives you a little feedback. Whenever I’ve tested tip soft shafts (tour v comes to mind) with a forged bladed head the feel can almost be mushy. Would love to try these $ tapers, with all the great options at a fraction of the price I doubt they’ll be in my bag anytime soon though.

  • Darrin

    Love the site. First time comment.

    May I ask your opinion of how the $-Taper would compare to the Nippon modus 125?

    I’m a long time CTaper S+ player, looking to move onto something else, but struggle to find similar ball flight performance. I’m a 1 handicap, with a 6 iron SS of 92mph if it helps. I would guess my transition is moderate, but I can get quick at times.

    Many thanks for entertaining my question!!!

    • The $-Taper is very much like the original KBS Tour. The Nippon 125 is similar to Dynamic Golds. The mid of the $-Taper is firm while the Modus 125 will be softer when comparing the same flex. Looking at the profiles you might say one is convex the other concave. Cannot tell which will feel better for you but the comparison of the two will teach you a lot at your skill level about what works best for your swing. The $Taper will have a softer tip than your CTaper.

  • How would you compare the rifle 7.0 to the KBS $-taper 130x?

    the rifle had the best smash factor, launched a little higher and spun a little more. My concern was the heavier weight in the long irons.

    $-taper was the second best performer