Fujikura Speeder Tour Spec Golf Shaft Review

Fujikura Speeder Evolution Tour SpecDriver Shaft

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

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Fujikura offers a Tour Spec version of most model. The Speeder Evolution Tour Spec model is different enough from the Speeder 757 that it deserved a separate review. This shaft is one of the standard option in the 2015 TaylorMade R15 driver. It is manufactured by Sino in China unlike the Speeder which is made in Japan.

The technical discussion and measurements are available only to registered readers

Speeder15TS_DeflectLoadsHowever it is not that easy to forecast how a shaft will launch in your hands. In this illustration the softest of the Speeder Evolution Tour Spec, the 661S to the 757X are subjected to progressively heavier loads. You can see how much more the 661S bends than the 757X. And, how the intersection of the two curves moves under load. The launch of a shaft is a function of how you load it.

The objective of the professional fitter is to find that combination of shaft profile, weight and stiffness that creates the tightest impact pattern, centered on the club face. Then to the degree possible, fine tune your launch with close variations of profile, weight and flex. Doing so is enhanced by how much your fitter understands the golf shafts he is using.

Fujikura Speeder Evolution Golf Shaft Review

Fujikura Speeder Evolution Driver Shaft

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

FujiSpeed15 vs 14The Fujikura Speeder 757 was my introduction to premium driver shafts many years ago. The Speeder brand name disappeared for many years. It was brought back a few years ago as the Motore Speeder, a complex matrix of 26 shafts, featuring 3 launch designs, each in an array of weight and flex. In late 2013 the Speeder brand was reintroduced with 8 shafts, numbered like the original Speeder. The Fujikura Speeder Evolution came to the golfing public in 2015. It is designed to handle the heavier driver heads we are now seeing. As you can see in this illustration, the tip is stiffer and there is a tip-mid stiffness adjustment as part of the design update.

Like all of the Speeder models from Fujikura the profiles are consistent throughout the model. As the weight increases so does the stiffness. The Speeder 474 R2 weighs 48 grams uncut. The weights and stiffness ascend from a 4″ deflection yielding 5.8 lbs for the 474R2, and 8.6 lbs for the 79 gram 757X.  The raw shafts are 47″ long, not the typical 46″.

Lets take a look at the profiles, they vary by model: 

The technical discussion and measurements are available only to registered readers

The Speeder Evolution is a classical design, mid soft in relation to a stiffer butt and tip.This design is a good fit for the majority of golfers. We can see the research done on the 3D ENSO system shaping the butt to create softer handles.

FujiSpeed15HoopAn interesting aspect of these shafts stood out during hoop stiffness testing. A significant ‘bump’ of hoop stiffness in the high midsection of the shaft. If you look at the EI curves you will see this is where the shaft is quickly descending in stiffness. At that point, an ultra high modulus hoop ply was added to preserve shaft stability.

Hoop stiffness is a function of wall thickness. near the tip, where the wall of the shaft are thick, the hoop stiffness is high. This graphic shows hoop deflection measurements. The less deflection, the stiffer that area of the shaft is. This is hoop stiffness, not bend stiffness. Hoop stiffness relates to the shaft ovalizing. The lower the number, the less oval deformation I measured. So, the dips you see are increases in hoop stiffness. The design objective in the Fujikura Speeder Evolution is to create shaft stability, and hence feel, in the section of the shaft where to majority of the load related bending occurs. What you see is the result of engineered wall thickness and high density pitch fiber pregreg in the hoop orientation, stabilizing the mid/butt region of the shaft.

An interesting discussion on another golf forum contained this comment, “This is the answer to all the “profile is profile” theorists – whose claim is that if I match bend pattern, weight, balance point and frequency then my $12 shaft is the same as your $175 shaft. Torque progression and distribution aren’t as handy to quantify but are essential elements in any high-performance design, and aren’t to be had for peanuts.”  We see in the Speeder Evolution design is what this writer was talking about. A highly evolved design using the latest high density fibers, fiber orientation and wall thickness control to create a performance enhancing golf shaft.

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Fujikura Speeder Pro Driver Shaft Review

Fujikura Speeder Pro Driver Shaft

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

SpeederProDriverRollingImageFujikura adds a Diver model to the Pro lineup, the Speeder Pro in 2015. I like the graphics on the Fujikura Pro Golf Shafts. The roll over from positive to negative on opposite sides of the shaft is great shaft art. The Pro line is available only through Fujikura charter dealers. This line of shafts is unique, within the line are 4 different profiles, each tuned to a particular swing type. That is an important aspect to understanding this shaft model.  Overlaying all the profiles is a confusing matrix. Sorting them as shown in the graphic below into their weigh groupings reveals the product strategy.

The technical discussion and measurements are available only to registered readers

The Speeder Pro uses high density material in the butt section to raise the balance of the shaft. That is seen in the positive numbers in the chart above. Balance numbers shown here are relative to the center of the shaft. A positive number is a balance toward the butt, a negative number toward the tip. These points are about as high I we see in current production. And as seen in the graphics and explained in the discussion with Alex, this was done without excessively stiffening the butt section of the tip. This was further aided by using high modulus material in the tip of the shaft. This created adequate tip stiffness without adding wall thickness and weight. All this speaks to the technology now being used in golf shafts.

Lets here what Alex Dee, from Fujikura has to say about these shafts. This is a segment of a 30 minute conversation about club fitting in general and about the 2015 Fujikura Shaft Models.

To see the entire discussion with Alex, click here.  Not shown in the numbers presented here. The Speeder Pro has a slightly larger butt than we typically see. These will make the grips a little larger. Something I find enhances the consistency of most golfers. Larger grips make it easier to hold on to the shaft.

If you are interested in this shaft, find a Fujikura charter dealer near you.

 

Oban ISAWA Golf Shaft Review

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

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Oban ISAWA Driver Shaft

A box of the new Oban ISAWA shafts arrived and as I was preparing them for measurement I was wondering just where Oban would go with a new design. They already have 5 shafts in the premium Kiyoshi family covering a wide range of profiles . They have the the Devotion in the in the high mid price range and the Revenge in the lower mid price range. Just what was the ISAWA going to bring to the party. The first thing I noticed was the MSRP, $199. Putting it in the same price range as the Devotion and the Revenge. It is a different profile from all the other Oban shafts.

The technical discussion and measurements are available only to registered readers

This profile is a classic low launch design. I do not do comparisons between brands here. But, I know this profile. It is new for Oban, but it is not new in the business. This is a great addition to the design matrix offered by Oban fitters.

Aldila Rogue Golf Shaft Review – Driver

Aldila Rogue Driver Shafts

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

I first heard about the Rogue at the PGA Merchandise show in 2014. At that time is was a tour only shaft, made exclusively at Aldila’s California facility. Aldila has always had a huge presence on the PGA Tour. That presence became more visible when Jordan Spieth won the 2015 Masters with the Aldila Rogue in his bag. Lets start with a look at the numbers:

The technical discussion and measurements are available only to registered readers

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