My Year with Single Length Irons- Part 4: On the Course!

The day after I opened the irons, the forecast was mid 40s with some wind- great February golf weather. I was about the only person on the course that afternoon. It was 39 when I started but warmed into the mid forties by the middle of the round.  Too cold to get an accurate ideas of distances, so I didn’t really try.  I just wanted to hit the irons and convince myself that this wasn’t all a horrible mistake.

I started on the back 9 because I thought it might be a little warmer and slightly less windy. I decided to play from the forward tees and hit 5 irons off the tees so I could get some experience with the longest- er, I mean lowest lofted- iron in the set. I left my lob wedge at home so I would have to chip with the 37.25 inch sand wedge.  I decided soon into the round that if I was hitting less than a full shot with the sand wedge, it was OK to choke-up, and I did.

On the second 9 (front) I played from the white tees and used my driver.  I had no fairway woods, however, so I used 5 irons when I would have needed fairway woods or hybrids. I shot a 39-44.  This was not bad considering I have up 5 shots on the second 9 with lipped out putts or poor sand shots. (I couldn’t get used to hitting that long of a sand wedge from the bunker- kept hitting it fat.)  In general, I was hitting the 5 and 6 iron with a pretty good trajectory. I was worried they would be too low, but they weren’t. Above the 7 iron, I was hitting the ball much higher than normal.  This could be a problem, especially on windy days. But the irons felt very good when struck solidly.  Were the “longer” irons a bit more consistent than usual?  Maybe.  Were the “shorter” irons a tad less consistent?  Maybe.  The irons look very nice at address- not too clunky a topline as I feared with this substantial game-improvement iron. I started out hitting all the irons a bit left- probably the effects of the 3 degree upright lie.  A small adjustment on the takeaway took care of that.

It’s far to early to say anything definitive about distances, gapping, or consistency, but I came away feeling good and looking forward to continuing the experiment.

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6 thoughts on “My Year with Single Length Irons- Part 4: On the Course!

  1. I am also giving single length irons a go. Well partially. I built a set (4-8), I can’t give up my shorter 9i and wedges. I’m gonna follow your blog and see how you do.

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  2. Thanks for the reply, Patrick. Let me know how it goes. So far, using a longer 9 iron and pitching wedge hasn’t bothered me. The long sand wedge is a bit awkward, especially from bunkers. I’m happy I still have my normal length lob wedge, however. I would be interested in how the shorter length 4 iron is working for you as well as the gapping on your clubs. Which components did you use?

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    • I used Maltby KE4 heads because the weight could be adjusted permanently. I got them all to 270 grams. Lies are set to to 62.5 degrees which is my 7 Iron number. Nippon NS Pro 8950 stiff 7 Iron shafts (37″). When I recently found the specs on the Cobras you have I see mine are very similar.
      I live in Western Canada so the outdoor ranges are 4 or 5 weeks away. Hit them at an indoor range and they felt better than expected but no numbers. I’m gonna get on a Trackman this weekend so I will have some numbers. I’m hoping for for similar distances that you are.
      The club I play at has a lot of “traditionalists” not open to anything new. So I hope they work. The idea of this setup just makes so much sense. We’ll see if we have similar challenges with these irons.

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      • Hi Patrick,
        Yes, specs sound similar. I’m anxious to hear how these clubs work for you. One of the component makers would have let me get 2* up heads. I forget which one. It would have cost me a lot less to do that, but this was sort of an impulse buy for me. I keep a set at Carne Golf links in Ireland and if I stick with single length, I may build a set and bring them over there. I just returned from a 5 day trip to Isle of Palms and Kiawah island and will post soon about my experiences there. They were very positive.
        Regards,
        Craig

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