Design Rationale (From SCOR GOLF)
The design of SCOR4161 represents a revolutionary departure from the norm in golf iron and wedge design principles, and is based on an in-depth examination of golf club performance in the hands of players of all skill levels. To fully understand the logic and rationale of the development of SCOR4161, you must explore the dynamics of current iron and wedge designs available to the golfer.
An examination of irons
The golf equipment industry has historically approached the design process for irons by developing 6-iron models and prototypes, testing them to satisfaction, then extrapolating that physical design palette into the other irons, from the 3-iron to the pitching wedge. In today’s iron models, that 6-iron will typically have 31-33 degrees of loft, but some “super game improvement” iron models take the 6-iron to as low as 28.5 degrees. Once the “winning” 6-iron design prototype is selected, that design palette is applied to all the other irons – downward 12-14 degrees of loft to the longest iron, and upward 20+ degrees to the set-match wedge(s).
Over the past decade, we’ve proven that with clubs below 20-24 degrees of loft, most golfers are much more successful with a design far removed from their 6-iron; hybrids have changed the golf bag landscape to the extent that an extremely small percentage of golfers still carry a 3-iron, even in the pro ranks. In other words, we’ve finally found that the 6-iron design doesn’t extrapolate well to clubs with more than 8 degrees loft difference from that 30-32 degree club.
Likewise, when the design of the 6-iron is applied beyond 8-10 degrees toward higher lofts, we find golfers have an increasingly difficult time managing their trajectories. They hit most of their shots too high, and with inconsistent distance control which prevents quality shotmaking in prime scoring range. In SCOR Golf’s exploration and testing with players of all skill levels, we found their most consistent iron play performance to be with the range of irons from 27-40 degrees of loft – the 5- to the 8-iron in most modern sets.
An examination of wedges
An examination of the wedge offerings from any manufacturer reveals a similar design philosophy – all lofts are built on the same basic back design and weighting concept. The bulk of the mass is placed low on the club head, and the upper 2/3 of the club is relatively thin. The result of this weighting is that golfers have an extremely difficult time hitting quality shots with a lower, boring trajectory when they make “full” swings with their wedges, again leading to inconsistent distance control.
It should be noted that the 12 degree loft difference between a lob wedge of 60 degrees and a pitching wedge of 48 degrees is the same difference as that between a 5- iron of 27-28 degrees and a 3-wood! No one would argue that 3-woods should look like 5-irons. In fact, in this range, we see a “morphing” of design from iron to hybrid to fairway wood.
So why, we asked, could we ever expect optimum performance from all wedges if they are weighted exactly the same?
An examination of wedge and iron shafts
The third critical element of short iron and wedge performance – but one that gets essentially no dialogue – is the shaft. The old saying that the shaft is the “engine” of the golf club is no less important in scoring clubs than it is in drivers and irons. But essentially all wedges are purchased off-the-rack wedges with a heavy and stiff steel shaft that have been the norm for decades. With a growing majority of golfers playing light steel or graphite shafts in their irons, this presents a huge “feel disconnect” for the golfer in prime scoring range.
Likewise, the industry has always embraced the notion that iron shafts should get progressively stronger in flex as the loft increases, which leads to very stiff shafts in the short range clubs, where the golfer is much more likely to need optimized feel and control for less-than-full shots.
Problem Analyzed, Solution Delivered -- SCOR4161
The SCOR4161 product line represents the most innovative and revolutionary departure from “the norm” in scoring clubs since the development of the sand wedge over 60 years ago. This comprehensive package of scoring technology is built around a simple but inarguable line of logic:
You swing a nine-iron more like a sand wedge than a four- or five-iron; short irons that look like 6-irons are inefficient. Wedges that all look alike – from 48 to 60+ degrees – cannot be optimized for trajectory and spin, especially with the new grooves. The distinct break in club design from set match short irons to off-the- rack wedges hinders better shotmaking in scoring range.
The clubs over 40* of loft is where any golfer will optimize his or her scoring, so these 4-6 scoring clubs should be designed, fitted and crafted with shotmaking precision in mind.