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Spin Study with clean vs. dirty wedge

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  • Spin Study with clean vs. dirty wedge

    This is a study that I did with dirty vs. clean wedge, as follows:
    As handicap improves, and less emphasis is placed on distance, and more on stopping power and holding greens, spin rates become more critical, and important target numbers for advanced golfers. There are many factors that are pertinent to spin rate, that I won't go into here. But, here is the information the way I did the study
    *I used my TaylorMade HiToe 54* wedge for all shots
    * I hit 10 balls with each grouping
    * I removed the 5 worst shots, based upon side spin and most dispersed shots
    * I averaged distance for each group of 5 shots
    * I averaged spin for each group of 5 shots
    * I used the following with dirty wedge: ProV1 Refurbished, Prov1, and Prov1X
    * I used the following with clean wedge: Prov1 Refurbished, Prov1, and Prov1X
    * Finally, I had AVX, Chrome Soft and TP5 balls, so I did the same with them, clean clubs only.
    Here are the results:

    Dirty Wedge:
    Balls. Distance. Spin
    ProV1R 81 6078
    ProV1 81. 5797
    ProV1X 83. 5855

    Clean Wedge:
    ProV1R. 82. 9307
    ProV1 85. 9827
    ProV1X. 85. 9899

    AVX 89. 8769
    Chrome Soft. 86. 10144
    TP5. 84 9926

    I am not going to make an assumptions yet, until I repeat this and see the numbers again , then I will average both sets of data and make final conclusions.
    However, I am comfortable, at this point, stating that it is very clear and evident that clean clubs and especially clean grooves, are instrumental to backspin.

    the second set of data will be slightly changed, as follows:
    1. I will use all new golf balls
    2. I will use the same 54* wedge-- clean only
    3. I will study the spin rate of the 6 sets of balls used in the clean wedge section above

  • #2
    Very interesting. Two questions: (1) Hold new/used is your wedge? Do they wear out? and (2) Can you share more on how you established a "dirty wedge" and the effort involved in getting to "clean"? Be helpful to know how the dirt occurring during a normal round and my wet towel approach to cleaning matches up with your test. I like this type of data as in this case I can certainly clean my wedge easier than I can improve my swing!


    • #3
      dirty=multiple rounds of golf without cleaning my irons, or basically just wiping them down. the grooves were packed with dirt but not intentionally.
      clean= cleaned with warm soap and water and then grooves were cleaned with a groove cleaner tool, without unnecessarily sharpening the grooves

      addition to the study:
      Dirty Gap Wedge. ProV1Refurb: 107 8708
      Clean Gap Wedge. ProV1Refur: 109 9506
      Chrome Soft: 103 9978


      • #4
        Great post ...thank you


        • #5
          I know this is an old post, but I did something similar recently, purely by chance.

          I have been taking some online lessons (skillest app) and my coach was talking to me about flighting my wedges. He basically said my 56° wedge should be launching around 30°. When I was practicing that, some days I had no issue at all keeping it at that 30° and under. Other days I couldn't get below 35-36° launch angle no matter what I did. I thought maybe there was a technique that I was using one day, and forgot about the next. Anyway, one day I was practicing and again, I couldn't get the dynamic loft down around that 30° target. Well, I hit a shot and the ball rolled around somewhere I was too lazy to find it. So I swept up another ball from the bin, (all prov1 practice balls) and first shot was like 28°.

          Long story short(er) I figured out if I hit a ball that was newer, I could flight it without any issues, if I hit a ball that had been hit quite a few times already, to the point the finish was a little duller looking, I was always about 5-6° higher in launch angle.


          • preludesam
            preludesam commented
            Editing a comment
            Yeah, great find! I see the same thing on my LM where a clean ball and clean grooves launch lower and spin more. Also, the type of ball makes a huge difference for my ball flight. Not sure about everyone else but I have to take a minute or two and clean the cover material off the clubface when I start getting weird launch conditions.

        • #6
          Thanks for the thread. Very helpful. I am very glad that the information is very detailed, because every sport needs details. I'm a big sports journalism fan and I'm working on a piece about sports journalism, specifically a book "The Contender" for a resource with free sample summaries for students. I believe that such materials are necessary for students to better understand the essence of the book.
          Last edited by JosephHedgepeth; 04-26-2022, 09:13 PM.