The 5 Best Wedge Shafts in GolfPublished on 06/16/2023 · 8 min readWedges are a big part of the golf game, and having the correct shaft will make your life on the course much easier! Check out these top five most recommended shafts.
Photo courtesy of Callaway
In the history of the game, when talking about the "best" of anything, there always seems to be the utilization of phrases such as, “it comes down to personal preference” or “it depends on the budget" and countless other variables. As such, there is a lot to consider when trying to figure out what are the best shafts for wedges. Whether you're on professional tours or in a group of amateurs, there are a few variables to consider when trying to find the best wedge for your game.
The putter is the most used club in a golfer's bag, accounting for about 50% of all strokes. The second most used club? You got it! The players use the versatility of wedges at about 20% of all strokes. So a very short answer is yes, wedges are a vital part of a golfer's game.
And yes, wedge shafts are usually heavier than iron shafts in terms of weight. Why is that? The clubheads of wedges have heavier shaft weight recommendations because the heavier club moves easier during a swing and thus allows the ball to get up in the air around the greens. The golfer gets more feel of the head with the proper flex of the shaft during the swing which allows for a better downswing. There's a lot to wedges, including forgiveness and groove sharpness. Also, do you need an extra stiff or stiff shaft flex? What kind of feedback or turf interaction are you looking for?
And which wedges are we talking about? There is the sand wedge (SW), pitching wedge (PW), gap or approach wedge (GW or AW), and lob wedge (LW), all in varying degrees of loft and designed to accomplish different shots on the course.
As a golf professional, I cheer for the newer golfers who are passionate about the game, send me videos, and ask all kinds of questions before they buy equipment. However, I had one beginner senior student of mine who read the annual Golf Digest Hot List and got inspired to buy one of the highest-rated wedge models from the listing. He sent me a picture and was happy that he bought three matching wedges and that the simulator noted the great work of the golf balls he hit far and straight. (You’ve got to love golf simulators.) His happiness turned to frustration in terms of distance once he started hitting balls on the range during our lesson. He couldn't figure out why he was chunking, topping, and doing everything but hitting the ball as he did in the simulator.
First of all, golf simulators are a great setup for indoor practice, but golf courses do not have perfectly flat grass. But serious golfers know that hitting golf balls on a simulator for club fitting only tells part of the story. It looked like he was swinging in slow motion with a lower ball flight! His iron's actual flex weight was 60gm shafts, and he was trying to swing a 132gm shaft attached to a Titleist Vokey wedge, like PGA tour players would use. Also, his irons were graphite, and the new wedges were steel. When I showed him, he finally just laughed and learned to do some research before buying equipment or at least have someone look at his swing before he purchases anything.
Another option is to go through a wedge fitting. Whether with a PGA professional or Curated Golf Expert, look at new wedge shafts and see what works best for you. Would graphite shafts offer you more protection from wrist or elbow injuries? Will you gain more accuracy and consistency if you play steel shafts?
So let's talk about the best shafts for wedges on the shelf available today. There is a multitude of shafts of all sizes, weights, and materials, which could make it a difficult choice. If you would like to learn about the differences between graphite and steel shafts, take a look at the Curated article, Graphite vs. Steel Shafts: Which Is Right for You? This will help simplify it for you.
Most golfers prefer to match the shafts on their irons to the wedges—that thinking is something I support. I usually order my set as a 4-iron through a gap wedge (aka approach or attack wedge). I like knowing that all the shafts match with the same grips as well. The main reason is it's one less distraction to think about when golfing, and not thinking that I have to swing a club differently because it's not matching. I will then match my type of swing with the 56 (SW) and 60-degree (LW) wedges with the same shaft and grips so that my entire set feels the same, no matter what shot I have to take. Bunker play lies and various sand conditions, grinds, and bounces on various types of courses are affected by softer flexes, lighter weight, bounce angle, spin rates, or heavy steel wedge shafts.
Typically, if you look at a Titleist Vokey, Mizuno, or Callaway wedge in the golf store, you will see it matched to a steel shaft or hybrid shaft option. Options will include True Temper Dynamic Gold, S200, Fujikura, KBS Hi-Rev, KBS Tour, Aerotech, or Nippon Modus shaft. These shafts are normally heavier than the iron shafts in a bag. For example, amateur players who shoot in the 90s and hit their 7-irons about 140 yards are probably using a regular flex shaft that might weigh between 80 and 110 grams. A typical manufacturer will offer a wedge in a golf store with a much heavier shaft, closer to the 115-125 gram range. If you're not used to using a heavy shaft, the swing will feel very different and the blame will go to the wedge when it's the shaft that might need a look.
Looking for more birdies or par scores, whether you're in Colorado or California? The solution is to look for custom wedge shafts, and the following are my top recommendations:
The Best Shafts per Category
1. True Temper Project X Rifle Steel Shaft (Best All-Around)
The nice thing about these steel shafts is how versatile they can be. They have a lot of variation. You can swing soft or hard, and they will execute accordingly. These are designed to offer mid to high-spin trajectory and tighter shots. As an instructor, I've tried these shafts, and I like the swing dynamics and how predictable the shots are on the course. These are available in multiple flexes and for entire iron sets, making it easy to match all the feel-oriented clubs.
- Versatile shaft for many types of shots
- Offer mid- to high-spin shots
2. Dynamic Gold S400 Wedge Shaft (Best for Mid-to-Low Handicappers)
The Dynamic Gold Tour issue is a popular steel shaft for the better player, including Tour players, Champions Tour players, and LPGA Tour players. The gold standard and tour-level performance shafts are made of steel and are on the heavy side. The tour-caliber accuracy of Dynamic Gold offers better consistency and looks great with any club. They're made for faster swings like Rory McIlroy, Jessica Korda, or Si Woo Kim and have great durability.
- Very heavy (130 grams); made for the advanced player, like Steve Stricker, with a faster swing speed
- Steel with limited flex options
3. True Temper AMT Red R300 (Best for Mid-to-High Handicappers)
This is a lightweight steel shaft aimed at higher handicap players, seniors, or female golfers. The proper shaft is made with less weight and, thus is easier to hit at slower swing speeds. They are also designed to launch the ball higher, which can help with approach shots to the green.
- Lightweight steel shaft, with multiple flex options on stock set of clubs
- Made for many skill levels, including the high handicapper, senior or lady golfer
4. KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 Taper Tip (Best for Beginners)
In the modern golf world, there is help for beginners who want to launch the ball high without loss of distance and without practicing seven days a week. They designed this steel shaft to get the ball up in the air with minimal effort. Lightweight and easy to use, these are best when used around the green, until your full wedge shots get grooved to a consistent swing.
- The lightweight softer shaft flex of these wedge shafts will help higher lofted wedges get the ball up in the air. No need to give it the extra help
- A pleasant option to use with the rest of the iron set, too, instead of stock wedge shafts
5. KBS 610 Wedge Steel Shaft (Best Budget Shaft)
KBS made these shafts specifically for wedges, which are not available for iron sets. They are very affordable and provide low trajectory to mid-height flights. With them, higher handicap players can learn to attack the green with direction and distance and get aggressive at the flag.
- A combination of shots includes low- and mid-trajectories and spinning and non-spinning shots
- Good bang-for-your-buck price
- This wedge-specific shaft only comes in stiff flex, so not for all skill levels or swing speeds
What Wedge Shafts Should You Use?
Who Can Help Find the Right Shafts for Wedges?
Chat with me or one of my fellow Golf Experts here on Curated. We love to help people with their searches and will consider tons of factors to try to fit you correctly. We also have tons of shaft selections to choose from for your wedges!