So much of choosing the right golf gear comes down to personal preference.
When it comes to wedges, most golfers focus their attention on the design of the clubhead. After all, that’s the part that makes contact with the ball!
However, a big part of the performance of a wedge is owed to the type of shaft used. Properties like shaft length and the flex profile are vital to consider.
Similarly, there is a science behind wedge shaft weight. Some players like lighter wedge shafts so they can feel the clubhead, while others prefer heavier shafts.
In this article, I’ll guide you through the typical wedge shaft weight profiles, along with the merits and drawbacks of heavier and lighter wedge shafts.
Ready? Let’s go.
Wedge Shaft Weight
Typically, all of your wedges will have the same shaft weight. So if your sand wedge shaft weighs 120 grams, your lob, pitching, and gap wedge shafts will also weigh 120 grams. However, there is no standard shaft weight for all wedges.
While 130 grams is probably the most common wedge shaft weight you will come across, it’s not a universal rule and it varies across manufacturers.
Let’s take a look at the shaft weights for some of the most popular wedges:
|Vokey SM9||True Temper Dynamic Gold S200||127g|
|Cleveland RTX Zipcore||True Temper Dynamic Gold Spinner||115g|
|Mizuno T22||True Temper Dynamic Gold S400||136g|
Check out the video below from Precision Golf, which discusses the importance of shaft weight when finetuning the feel of a club for your individual swing:
So, is it better to have heavier or lighter shaft weights? In the next section, I’ll cover the advantages and disadvantages of each wedge shaft weight. Read on!
The Case for Heavier Shaft Weights
It’s easy to assume that your wedge shafts should match the weight of your iron shafts. You would think that the consistency in shaft weight would translate to consistency in swing speed, shot accuracy, and general performance.
But that isn’t necessarily the case.
In fact, many skilled golfers seem to prefer a heavier wedge shaft.
Why? Think about the kinds of shots you take with a wedge in your hand.
You’re probably imagining a lot of flop shots, chips, and generally shots from 90 yards in. Simply put, you typically aren’t taking full swings with your wedges.
This is the strongest case for heavier wedge shafts. According to True Temper, it can give you a better sense of the club head on half and three-quarter swings.
Summary: Heavier shafts are better for 1/2 and 3/4 swings, and faster swing speed players.
The Case for Lighter Shaft Weights
Some players prefer a fluid transition from their irons to their wedges, so they keep their wedge shafts the same weight to help achieve consistency.
Lighter shaft weights can help you feel the weight of the clubhead, which is useful for fuller shots — similar to the swings you’d take with irons.
Also, lighter shafts generally have more flex. This type of flex profile is typically best suited for golfers with slow to moderate swing speeds.
Basically, if you have a slow to moderate swing speed or simply tend to take full to nearly full shots with your wedges, you’d probably do well with a lighter shaft.
Summary: Lighter shafts are better for full swings, and slow to moderate swing speeds.
Should Wedge Shafts Be Heavier Than Iron Shafts?
Any time I’ve gone in for a iron or wedge shaft fitting, I got the distinct feeling that the fitter was trying to match my wedge shafts very close to my iron shafts.
Ultimately, I never thought twice about it until I met other golfers that play heavier shafts in their wedges than they do in their irons.
This made me wonder about the benefit of using heavier wedge shafts.
Typically, a player will choose to have heavier wedge shafts to improve feel. Your wedges have the heaviest clubheads in the bag, so it can make sense to pair them with heavier shafts to balance out the weight distribution.
On the other hand, leeping the overall weight of your wedges down by using a lighter shaft can actually create a more favorable balance point. This can result in increased clubhead speed — if that’s something you’re after.
For instance, if we compare the popular Dynamic Gold iron shafts with the KBS 610 wedge shafts, we can see the wedge shafts carry slightly less weight:
|Iron Shaft||True Temper Dynamic Gold||Stiff||127g|
|Wedge Shaft||KBS 610 Wedge Shaft||Stiff||120g|
In summary, wedge shaft weight varies between about 115 and 135 grams.
This number varies according the the shaft length, flex profile, material, and other properties which can alter the overall weight of the shaft.
Should wedge shafts be heavier than iron shafts? It comes down to preference.
Some fitters, like the ones I have encountered, seem to prefer that you keep your wedge shafts in a similar weight profile as the iron shafts for consistency.
Top players like Tiger Woods often opt for heavier wedge shafts with firmer flexes but for the common golfer, consistent shaft weight across wedges and irons may actually yield better spin numbers and favorable descent angles.
Still, some players say that a heavier wedge shaft just feels better. Depending on your unique swing, heavier shafts could produce better launch and spin.
Ultimately, I recommend you go in for a professional club fitting. That way, you can test various types of shafts to determine which one fits your swing.