Dechambeau’s First Masters

Legend
With three rounds of even par 72, and one round of 77  Dechambeau completed his first Masters tied for 21st. place.  His score of +5 was good enough to earn him low amateur honours .
Pictured below are the irons he ended up playing at the Masters.
DeCambeau Masters irons 1 (1)

Many amateurs would not be caught dead playing with a set of irons that look like the irons Bryson Dechambeau used at the Masters this week.

Granted, they are not the prettiest irons I’ve ever seen but more and more I’m coming to the realization that appearance is far less important than performance.

For many of us who are interested in the single length iron and single plane swing concepts, the Master finally provided us with an opportunity to have a good look at Bryson’s clubs and more importantly, his swing.

I still marvel at how accurately, and how far he is able to hit the ball with such and upright swing.  I’ve included links to a number of videos from the Masters that display his swing action from different angles.  Make particular note of his right arm to shaft position even with his longer clubs.  They provide and excellent example of the single plane swing setup.

 

Here are some links to video’s of Dechambeau at the Masters

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016-04-08/zlkp_a_a4yvtfvx2ul6uknp25eag8ohf.html?promo=vod_players

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016-04-10/rzryq9caarnpc9ckhawciiy_xcbcwupc.html?promo=vod_players

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016/r4_47959_18.html?promo=vod_players

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016/r3_47959_10.html?promo=vod_players

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016/r3_47959_8.html?promo=vod_players

http://www.masters.com/en_US/watch/2016/r2_47959_15.html?promo=vod_players

Dechambeau sporting Cobra single length irons

The speculation as to which OEM Bryson Dechambeau will sign with once he turns pro is getting clearer.  He recently started playing a Cobra Driver and this week debuted a new set of single length  Cobra irons.

I’ve played a few Cobra Hybrids over the years but have never tried Cobra woods or irons.  That may soon change, especially as it relates to irons.

Cobra has produced, or perhaps, more correctly, altered a set of their Cobra King Forged CB irons to match the specifications of Dechambeau’s original Edel irons. He put them in play this week at the 19th Annual Georgia Cup.

CobraKingMB

Stock Cobra King Forged MB irons

According to WRX Golf,  Dechambeau’s Cobra prototype irons are 37.5 inches long throughout the set with each head weighing 280 grams.  The lie angle is 73.5 degrees.

Apparently the process of altering the Cobra CB irons to meet the specifications of the Edel irons involved a lot of grinding, bending and adding weight to the lower lofted irons.

This leads to several interesting questions:

  1. Which set of irons will Dechambeau put into play when he tees it up at the Masters next week?  My guess is he will go with the Edel irons but there may well be some industry pressure for him to use the Cobra irons, which in my mind would be a mistake.
  2. Are we about to see a major OEM produce a set of single length irons for the mass market?  That will all depend on how well Dechambeau performs once he turns pro, which he intends to do the week after the Masters.  If he were to perform well as a pro with Cobra single length irons, we may well see a major OEM venture into the field of mass marketing single length irons, the first since Tommy Armour’s ill-fated attempt in the mid 1980’s. A winning Dechambeau would provide Cobra with the ‘poster boy’ Armour lacked.

My new set of Pinhawk single length irons

While researching and writing the recent posts about single length irons, I was also busy on the other side of the equation assembling and experimenting with a set of single length irons.

As the saying goes ‘the proof is in the pudding’ so I have attempted to put the theory into practice.

This is what my new set looks like.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

As indicated earlier, I decided to go with Pinhawk heads, which are specifically designed for single length iron sets.  The set consists of ten clubs, from flop wedge to 4-hybrid.  The heads are cast stainless steel, cavity back,  made with 431 steel which is a little softer and more bendable than the 17-4 steel used by most major OEM manufacturers.  The heads throughout the set from flop wedge to 4-hybrid each weigh 272 grams (+/- 1) and have a lie angle of 62.5 degrees.

I experimented with various lengths ranging from 35 to 37.5 inches.  I eventually ended up with 37 1/16.  If you are wondering about the 1/16 of an inch,  it has no significance.  What happened was that as I experimented with different club lengths, hitting them at the Golf Dome, there was  one particular iron that I was hitting most consistently.  When I measured it precisely it was 37 1/16 inches in length so I just built the entire set to match that club.

At a length of 37 1/16 inches and using a 70 gram graphite shaft and a 50 gram grip the swing weight comes in at D1.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The table below indicates the off-the-rack specifications of the Pinhawk heads I am using.  I suspect that some minor loft adjustments may be required to ensure proper ‘gap’ distances between clubs.

 

Pinhawk Iron Set
Club 4 5 6 7 8 9 PW GW SW LW
Loft 20° 25° 30° 35° 39° 43° 47° 51° 55° 59°
Lie 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5° 62.5°
Weight (grams) 272 272 272 272 272 272 272 272 272 272
Offset (mm) 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3

Source:  Value Golf

 

I have already done some lie adjustments on a few of the irons to promote a more upright swing plane.  A few of the irons have been bent as much as 2.5 degrees without any breakage.

The final lofts and lies will not be arrived at until the clubs are tested in ‘on course’ conditions.

Below are links to the series of posts previously written on the topic of Single Length Clubs.

Who are Homer Kelley and Bryson DeChambeau

Standard length and loft for irons

Single length golf clubs

Advantages and disadvantages of single length irons

The effect of club length on swing speed and distance

The effect of loft on carry distance

Unless something miraculous or untoward happens in the next few months at the Dome I won’t write another post about these clubs until the grass is green and the birds are singing again.

Fore!