Wedge adviceNovember, 2011
We spoke to Dean Cracknell from wedge experts Cleveland and discussed lofts, bounce and gapping...
Why have the lofts of pitching wedges got progressively stronger over the years?
“Shrinking Loft Disease” has transpired as golfers of all standards have demanded more distance. Loft, and in this case the lack of it, has a significant impact on distance
Why have Cleveland chosen to display the lofts of each iron on the club?
For some time, manufacturers have preached the importance of maintaining consistent loft increments at the “wedge end” of the bag. However, as a player if you are intent on hitting the ball consistently increasing distances with your irons then the loft increments should be consistent in your iron set also. For that reason we took the initiative to stamp loft values on our irons, so that the player could select the appropriate wedge lofts to use alongside the irons.
Is it less important to carry three or four wedges if you are a high-handicapper?
A lot depends upon the strengths and weaknesses in your game. Statistics suggest that irrespective of your handicap, more than 50 percent of your shots on a golf course are played inside 100 yards.
In your opinion, would the average player benefit more from carrying an extra hybrid or an extra wedge?
I’d refer you to my answer to the previous question – statistics suggest that irrespective of your handicap, more than 50 percent of your shots on a golf course are played inside 100 yards.
In some cases, players can have as much as 16° loft gaps between wedges, which is an incredible amount When people come to see you for a fitting, what sort of gaps do you typically find they have between their wedges?
In some cases, players can have as much as 16° loft gaps between wedges. On more than one occasion I have come across a player carrying a strong-lofted pitching wedge and a 60° lob wedge – as you can imagine the two clubs hit the ball some 60 yards apart!
What does the club player need to know about the business of ‘gapping’?
The gaps in loft should be as consistent as possible, if you are looking to maintain consistent yardages between clubs.
What size gaps do you recommend from one wedge to the next?
Ideally 4°, although often this can be stretched to 6° for some players
When you are fitting scratch players, how many wedges do they carry and what are the typical gaps?
More experienced players tend to appreciate the need to carry more “scoring” clubs. If you include the set PW, most Category 1 players will carry three or four wedges with gaps of 4 to 6°.
In yards, what should be the difference between how far your pitching wedge goes and how far your gap wedge should go?
Assuming you have 4 to 6 degrees of loft between these two clubs there should be around eight to 15 yards between them.