The Mizuno T-20 wedges take grooves in a whole new direction in an effort to get a little extra grab and consistency from the rough.
The company led the industry in developing grooves that were tailored to how specific lofts were typically used. In its wedges over the last decade, grooves in the lower lofts were narrower and deeper to improve their performance on full swings, which is how those wedges were typically played. At the same time, the grooves on higher lofts were wider and shallower to help create more grab with partial shots.
The T-20 wedges maintain that idea, but look to move a step further. Realizing that moisture from wet rough conditions can negatively effect spin creation, the team at Mizuno looked at the space between the horizontal grooves to see if it could contribute to further channeling away more moisture. Yes, these wedges are milled to create surface roughness, but these wedges add microgrooves that stretch vertically between each groove.
"It's a little bit of a zag while everybody else is zigging," said David Llewellyn, director of research and development. "We really didn't believe that any laser microgrooves in the past we're increasing spin although we thought it might be similar to the milling marks on the face. Our concern was to make them longer-lasting. For us, the concept is like the old Aquatred tires and how the treads channeled water in all directions away from the contact point with the rubber and the road. Orienting these grooves in the vertical direction actually gives that moisture a path to escape."
The approach to increasing spin consistency goes farther. The tapered shape of the upper half of the wedge blade puts more mass higher on the face to raise the center of gravity to control flight and create more spin.
In addition, the T-20 wedges add an extra groove lower on the face and feature a little more effective bounce to promote cleaner turf interaction.
In terms of shaping, the T-20 wedges feature a more classic teardrop shape with the lower lofts transitioning to a more rounded shape for optimal versatility on the highest lofts.
As always, the T-20 wedges continue Mizuno's forging heritage, for the first time in a wedge employing the grain-flow forging HD technique that concentrates the grain structure in the meat of the impact area, something that's been part of Mizuno irons since it was first introduced with the MP-18 irons two years ago. Like recent Mizuno entries, the T-20 wedges are forged from 1025 boron to improve durability, allowing the milled grooves to maintain their angles longer.
The T-20 wedges ($150) will be offered in two finishes (white satin and blue ion plated). They will be available at retail in September.