May 28 2013
Titleist's Vokey WedgeWorks Hand Ground wedges will soon be available to the public. (Titleist)
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM Equipment Insider
Most golfers will never have the opportunity to hop inside Titleist's tour truck and have their wedges worked on by master wedge craftsman Bob Vokey or Vokey Tour Rep Aaron Dill. To get inside the truck, you need a couple of things — namely a PGA TOUR card and some serious game.
Titleist has offered up custom wedge options for golfers through its Vokey WedgeWorks program over the past several years, but for the most part, the tour pro treatment -- custom grinds, unique wedge head shapes and leading edges geared for your swing -- was reserved for the best players in the world.
Beginning June 19 that will no longer be the case, after Titleist unveiled its new WedgeWorks Hand Ground on Tuesday -- a wedge program that will give golfers the opportunity to work with Vokey's Tour Department to create a one-of-a-kind custom design.
“I’m excited to make this tour-level experience available to the Vokey wedge enthusiast,” said Vokey.
“I’m bringing everything I’ve learned over the years working with the best players in the world to this project. Many of the little tweaks I like to do on the Tour Van are now available. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.”
The Hand Ground wedge comes in two loft options (58- or 60-degree) with Vokey's previously tour-only raw finish. Along with the custom finish, Vokey will give golfers a chance to pick from four sole grinds — M, V, E and T.
The M was Bob Vokey's first grind and features a crescent-shaped forward bounce surface and relieved wrap surface; the V grind features a narrower bounce surface than the M but with more bounce angle and less camber; the limited-edition E Grind features a narrow-to-medium sole with full bounce surface and straight relief along the trailing edge; and the T, named for two-time PGA TOUR winner Tom Pernice, Jr., features a much narrower forward bounce surface with minimal camber.
Of the four sole grinds offered, three of them (V, E and T) are only available through the Hand Ground program.
From there, golfers can choose from additional grind options, including a square toe, straighter or pre-worn leading edge, additional heel relief, thinner or beveled top line and a pro-groove sole that, according to Vokey, moves "the contact point on the sole slightly forward, allowing him to activate the bounce on short pitches."
The pro-groove, a subtle channel in the center of the sole, is a hand grind that a number of players are currently using on the PGA TOUR — including U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson.
Vokey's Hand Wedge program will also offer five toe stamps — "Prototype 2013," "Hand Ground," "Spin Milled," "BVHG" or "Special Grind" — as well as an additional custom stamp with up to eight letters/numbers using 12 different paintfill colors in four different styles.
Golfers also have the option to get the club's loft stamped on the toe. The wedge can also be adjusted for length, loft and lie angle.
Weight porting on the back of the wedge (used to get an exact swingweight) and custom shaft options are also available. And don't forget custom grips, ferrules and Vokey shaft bands.
The grinder's initials are then stamped on the hosel of the wedge to give it a unique finishing touch. A "BV" hosel stamp means the work was done by Vokey himself.
Simply put, the Hand Ground program offers you every possible custom option you'd want in a wedge — with a couple more bells and whistles.
Orders for WedgeWorks Hand Ground wedges can be submitted to the Vokey Tour Department through Vokey.com beginning June 19. The price per Hand Ground wedge is $350.