Gear & EquipmentSeptember 23, 2013

Adams takes the slot-soled iron one step farther

By Mike Stachura

Adams Golf has been working on the idea of building sets of irons with three types of clubs to produce ideal yardage gaps since 2008 and the a3OS super game-improvement irons.

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Now it's got a new idea, or more precisely a New Idea, the next generation in Adams philosophy to bring better yardage gaps to moderate swing speed golfers. The New Idea irons not only mix in three types of iron shapes (traditional hybrids, hollow middle irons and traditional cavity back designs), but adds a wrinkle to the slotted iron designs of its parent company TaylorMade, but with a focus specifically on the higher handicapper.

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The set then mixes in two hollow irons for the 6- and 7-iron spots and concludes with traditional, wide-soled cavity back designs for the short irons.

What's unique in the iron construction is a slot that runs along the sole and then continues vertically toward the upper toe. It grew out of Adams' engineers research showing that 80 percent of 15-plus handicappers made impact with their irons at an average of one-half inch toward the toe.

According to Justin Honea, senior design engineer, "This slot is basically wraps 270 degrees around the club, and it gives us 24 percent more ballspeed on off-center toe hits than our previous irons. The goal is to produce more distance consistency through this toe slot."

The design aims to help off-center hits, said Honea, but not at the exclusion of performance for on-target strikes. "We still make the center of the golf club where you want to hit it." Indeed, according to its engineers, Adams' technology in this area has previously produced irons (including 7-irons) that generate characteristic time measurements in the vicinity of numbers previously reserved for drivers. ("Characteristic Time" refers to the U.S. Golf Association's pendulum device, which measures a club's spring-like effect.)

The irons are set to be available in stores next month, and will sell for $700 in steel and $800 in graphite. The hybrids also will be sold separately ($170), and there also is a 12-piece set available for men and women that includes a driver, fairway woods, putter and a bag ($1,000).

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