It’s always great to hear from the mountain top. By that I mean getting the latest on club technology from Tom Wishon. Nobody knows more about club design, club fitting and engineering that Wishon, whose Wishon Golf Technology Co. (www.wishongolf.com) is based in Durango, Colo.
Wishon has launched a full line of bendable hosel drivers, fairway woods and hybrid irons – an industry first as far as I know – to offer a far wider range of specifications in the three key fitting elements of loft, lie and face angle.
“Nobody else is doing this,” says Wishon, who has engineered and designed golf clubs for more than 30 years, has written 10 award-winning books in the field. “The fitting benefits are considerable, because Wishon Golf hosels are bendable versus the OEM’s ratchet-style adjustable hosels.”
According to Wishon, adjustable hosels are fundamentally flawed because changing a club’s hosel setting only changes the loft angle when the golfer knows to never sole the head on the ground and to always hold the face square behind the ball. In doing this, Wishon says, golfers end up with “absolutely no option’’ for a custom face angle to reduce their tendencies to slice or hook the ball because they always have to hold the face square to get the loft change.
“Given the fact that an estimated 70-percent of all golfers slice the ball to some degree, not being able to have a custom face angle with a custom loft is a performance disadvantage for a lot of golfers,’’ Wishon says. “Plus, the lie angle ends up at a completely random and not specifically ordained position.
“There is so much confusion about what adjustable hosel clubs can and can’t do. When I designed the industry’s first adjustable hosel sleeve in 1995, it was accepted by all designers that the rotation of the shaft’s angle within the sleeve could only result in a change of the lie and face angle – not loft. This is because all designers measured loft, lie and face angle of drivers/woods by resting the heads on the sole’s flat surface.”
But with today’s adjustable hosel sleeves, which Wishon says technically function the same as his original 1995 design – OEMs claim the rotation of the sleeve offers a loft change.
“Any veteran in club head design knows that a loft change can only result from changing the angle of the shaft into the head if the golfer never soles the head on the ground and always holds the face square behind the ball,’’ Wishon says. “Doing this eliminates a very important fitting specification for accuracy improvement – a custom face angle. And that’s bad, because that is cutting a lot of golfers short in terms of giving them a club that will enable them to keep the ball in play more often while also incorporating the right loft angle to optimize launch angle for maximizing distance.”
Wishon says that with his proprietary bendable hosel technology, Wishon Golf is the only company that can offer golfers their best fit loft and lie and face angle, each existing independently on the same club head to offer the most complete benefit in custom club fitting.
Wishon says the technology “precisely solves’’ this issue with drivers, woods and hybrids tooled and manufactured in different lofts, each with the company’s proprietary and fully customizable bendable hosels. Custom club makers can order the desired loft on each club head with the desired custom lie adjusted within a range from four-degrees up to four-degrees flat, and the required custom face angle bent from four degrees open to four degrees closed.
With loft, lie and face angle existing independently of each other on the club head, Wishon says, the fitting performance benefits for each different golfer are greatly enhanced.
And one other thing from the mountain top. Don’t try this at home.
“Wishon Golf designs are custom fit by professional club makers worldwide,” Wishon says. “All customizing of the loft, lie and face angles will be performed either by us as ordered by the professional club maker, or by the club makers who use a proprietary, Wishon Golf-developed bending machine that’s specifically designed for our bendable hosel technology.”
Wishon says his new 919THI Driver is separately tooled in different lofts, each featuring the company’s proprietary bendable hosel that allows the golfer to be fully customized with the right loft, lie and face angle, with each specification existing independently from each other, all on the same model to perfectly fit the golfer. It features four separate right-hand designs that include nine-, 11-, 13- and 15.5-degree lofts to further enhance a player’s performance. (Left-hand lofts are 11- and 13-degrees).
The 919THI comes with either conventional and black oxide finishes, and, according to Wishon, is equipped with a variable thickness face with high MOI (moment of inertia) that delivers the best off-center hit performance in the game.
The new 929HS Fairway Wood is also equipped with a bendable hosel and is offered in six right-hand models (#2, 3, 4, 5, 7 and 9) and three left-hand models (#3, 5 and 7). Wishon says the 31mm semi-shallow face height is ideal for playing off tight, close-mown fairways and for golfers who need more confidence in getting the ball airborne. Its high strength steel thin face also allows for high COR for increased ball velocity and a maximum 1.50 smash factor for increased ball speed and distance.
The new 950HC Fairway Wood is the company’s traditionally sized fairway wood. It offers a bendable hosel, 34mm face height and five right-hand models (#3, 4, 5, 7 and 9). The high strength steel thin face, Wishon says, allows for high COR and a maximum 1.50 smash factor.
The new 775HS Hybrid Iron has a bendable hosel and comes in five right-hand models (#2, 3, 4, 5, 6) and one left-hand model (#3). Specifications include a split-level, narrowed primary sole width for more consistent fairway and rough shotmaking; and a thin, high COR, high-strength alloy face that delivers increased ball velocity and a maximum 1.50 smash factor.
For a more detailed explanation about the differences between bendable hosels versus adjustable hosels, click here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=aj5KOk2oXU0.