INDIPENDENT GOLF REVIEWS


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The Best Manufacturing Process Means the Best Shaft Results

I’d consider myself pretty well informed when it comes to golf gear.  I know a fair amount about what goes into the process of clubmaking, building, designing, etc, but the one area I’m not well versed in, is shaft manufacturing.  I know there are some differences in the layering, spinning, and carbon fibers, but not until I learned about TPT (Thin Ply Technology) shafts did I understand the differences.  I’ll try not to bore with all the details I learned from TPT (which as a golf geek I thought were pretty cool) but give you a more basic explanation about why TPT makes some of the best shafts in the world.  Not only is their process superior to other shafts, the results I got made this my new favorite shaft.

 The basic background of TPT is not in golf; North Thin Ply Technology (NTPT) was founded in 2001, it has produced high-performing laminate composite materials, as well as materials-engineering services, for a vast array of industries: satellites, aviation (rotary and fixed-wing), racing (sea and land), sports and luxury watches.  After consultation with some golf professionals specifically David Leadbetter and J.J Rivet, they were encouraged to try making a golf shaft.  They admitted that making a golf shaft was much harder than previous applications.  Their expertise in computerized carbon fiber manufacturing allows them to make a shaft with more layers, more control of the weave,  tighter tolerances and each shaft being exactly the same as the next.  What this means in the real world for golfers is that if you ever break a TPT shaft, the next one you get will be exactly the same or if you demo a TPT shaft and love it, you can get the exact same one, not just one they  “say” is the same.  Other shaft companies have greater variances from shaft to shaft; TPT shafts are exactly the same.

TPT shafts just launched this spring and have a simple line-up. Low kick or mid kick aimed at 5 swing speed categories, basically 10 shafts. I went with the 15 Mid-kick shaft which is aimed for about a 105 -120 MPH swing speed which I’m on the lower end of that speed category, but I like the stronger launch of the mid-kick. The looks are all similar with a black raw carbon fiber look and lime green and blue graphics. It is a 74 gram shaft which is on the slightly heavier side, but for stronger more aggressive swings, it is a good fit. I found it was excellent for my swing. The smooth feel of this shaft is unique because it doesn’t have a distinguishing kick, but rather loads and unloads with a consistent feel and motion.

Is a $700 shaft really better?  Any time the cost of a shaft becomes the issue, it is simply a matter of how you want spend your money. If you invest in a TPT shaft, you can be sure that you are getting the highest quality shaft money can buy and the performance is going to speak for itself against anything else out there.  You need to be fit for this shaft and try it out before you just jump in and assume you know which one will work for you.  I had the privilege of working with TPT at the Leadbetter Academy in Orlando, FL during their launch event and tested their 4 different shafts that were closest to my numbers on paper to settle on this one.  Based on my Flightscope Xi Tour Launch Monitor testing, this is potentially the best shaft I’ve ever hit.

Flightscope Xi Tour Launch Monitor

TPT Golf 15 Mid-Kick Shaft

  • Spin: 1804 rpms
  • Launch Angle: 15.2*
  • Dispersion: 6.2 yds
  • Club Head Speed: 107.7 mph
  • Ball Speed: 159.0 mph
  • Total Distance:  296.5 yds
  • Carry Distance:  273.8 yds

The TPT shaft installed on the new TaylorMade M1 driver is one of the best combos I’ve ever hit.  It offers both distance and accuracy.  One thing that is hard to convey in the data above is the repetition of such numbers.  It’s one thing to get an average, it’s another when the variance of that average is small.  The TPT shaft is the most consistent shaft I’ve ever hit, and the results are just as good.  They improved the manufacturing process and this improved the results.  Yes, it comes at a cost, but at least you are getting the best shaft money can buy.

Quick Hits:
+Consistent
+Accurate
+Uniquely smooth
+Cool muted looks
+Long

–Expensive