We match your driver to your favorite club
History of Shaftuner
My name is George Hodgetts, the author of the book Fix Your Driver and the founder of Shaftuner. This web site allows me to reach a wider audience than just the local golfers here in Alabama. The beginning of the technology on which the company is based, started around 1977 right after I received a golf club component catalog from a company named “Golf Day Products”. By 1980, I had learned that a strobe light and a grip vise could be used to accurately determine the flex of a shaft measured in CPM(cycles per minute). I was able to build a crude golf club frequency meter and used it to measure the flex of every club in my set. Their flexes were erratic I suppose due to poor quality control in the assembly process. To make the set hit more consistently, I re-shafted my entire set so that their flexes progressed evenly from club to club on a straight line club length-frequency chart recommended by True Temper.
Of course, I had no way to determine what overall flex I needed in the first place, but at least all my club’s flexes were “frequency matched” to each other, causing an immediate drop in my handicap. Many years latter I would develop a method for testing players with test clubs that identified the exact “best” flex for each individual and a better method for matching clubs in a set than the method recommended at the time.
In 1983, a PGA touring pro named Rex Caldwell came to Pleasant Valley in Sutton, MA, to play the a PGA tournament, after missing almost all the cuts for the previous three months due to a broken driver. In an article appearing in the Boston Globe , he claimed he had tried 15 drivers to replace his broken one, without success. I borrowed his old broken driver and delivered a new copy of his driver, as it was before it broke, to him the next day. His old driver shaft was miss-marked by 1.5 flexes. The odds are that Rex could have tried another hundred drivers with the same lettered flex marked on the shaft band and never found a good match to his old driver. Two weeks later, using my free driver, he won the Lajet Classic and went from 150th to 5th on the PGA Money Winners List that year. I was able to copy his old club in a few hours using a technique similar to one I was later to patent in 1992 on Golf Club Frequency and Bandwidth Analysis.
Golf club xerography was born
This experience proved that shaft flex was very important both for maximum distance and directional control and I set out to find a method for identifying each player’s optimum flex. I needed a set of test clubs that would span the entire flex spectrum in small increment to identify which flex worked better than all the others. Initially, my test clubs covered only the range from Reg to Xstiff but later included Senior (A flex) and Ladies (L flex) and still later the (LL flex), one flex below Ladies.
Each player to be fitted hit 3 shots with each club and the average shot length achieved with each was plotted across the flex spectrum, as shown on the Shaft Flex page, thereby revealing the “best” flex for that player.
Interestingly enough, players with favorite clubs almost always tested at the same “best” flex as the favorite, thereby rendering the testing session unnecessary in these cases.
Using a favorite club instead of an in-person test for the “best” flex was born.