Titleist's Vokey SM9 K Grind: What you need to know
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Titlist’s Vokey SM9 wedge line gets an extension with the addition of a pair of low-bounce (6 degrees) wedges in 58 and 60 degrees with the tour-proven K grind.
PRICING/AVAILABILITY: The new 58.06 and 60.06 SM9 K grind models are available immediately in right-hand and left-hand through golf shops and Vokey.com. Price is $225 per wedge. A number of custom options including toe engraving, stamping and custom paintfills are available via the company’s WedgeWorks program.
THE DEEP DIVE: Coming on the heels of its full-line SM9 launch, Titleist has introduced an extension to the line with the addition of the WedgeWorks low bounce K grind in tour chrome and raw finishes.
The K grind is a popular option among tour players including Cameron Smith, Justin Thomas, Webb Simpson and non-Titleist staffer Scottie Scheffler. Tour pros, however, prefer the club for more than just its wide cambered sole.
“Several players preferred the K grind sole but were seeking a lower-bounce version,” said Titleist Master Craftsman Bob Vokey. “As a result, we crafted a sole with 6 degrees of effective bounce, while maintaining the wide camber that makes the K design so effective for a wide variety of players. As soon as we brought it out on tour, it was immediately accepted and in the bags of multiple players as soon as they had a chance to test it.”
The K grind option contains all the benefits of the SM9 line, including a center-of-gravity position in front of the face that assists squaring the clubhead at impact. However, the CG has been slightly raised in the vertical direction by adding weight higher up in the clubhead (which is essentially invisible to the eye thanks to a tapered area at the rear of the toe area).
Spin consistency was addressed as well with the first groove revision since the SM6. A new “spin milled” cutting process is employed that uses a cutter that creates the entire scoreline instead of a partial scoreline. The result is tighter manufacturing tolerances for a more consistent scoreline edge radius, allowing for the grooves to be sharper and closer to the USGA limit. The edge radius is rounded so the edge lasts longer. That, coupled with a heat-treatment process, helps with spin retention. Micro-grooves are cut between the grooves to add spin on partial shots.
“The K grind lives in the bags of some of the world’s best,” said Aaron Dill, Vokey PGA Tour rep. “It has always been known as the ultimate bunker club, inspiring confidence in players short games. However, when you ask players on tour why they play the K grind, they will tell you not only do they love the performance in the bunkers, but they love the way the leading edge hugs the ground when pitching and chipping.”
The K grind, however, is not just built for tour players. Its wide cambered sole provides a margin of error for amateurs around the green and out of the sand.
The new 58.06 and 60.06 SM9 K grind models are available immediately in right-hand and left-hand through golf shops and Vokey.com. Price is $225 per wedge. A number of custom options including toe engraving, stamping and custom paintfills are available via the company’s WedgeWorks program.