April 29, 2014
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM
- The TVD wedges are available in two finishes: California Chrome (left) and Black Ion. (Vokey)
Master craftsman Bob Vokey has spent decades fine-tuning wedges for the best players in the world, creating a wide variety of bounce and grind options to satisfy as many swing types, shot techniques and course conditions as possible.
But if there's one thing Vokey has learned during his time on TOUR, it's that some players need something that isn't on the current list of bounce and grind options. Vokey's M-Grind is the most popular grind on TOUR, but several years back, Vokey started to receive feedback from players such as Webb Simpson and Adam Scott that they wanted to see a tweak to the camber and a narrower sole.
Instead of adjusting the wedge and keeping it under the M-Grind name, Vokey decided to give the special wedge a new name: TVD-M. The three letters stand for "Tour Van Design," a name Vokey placed on his two most popular grinds — the M-Grind and K-Grind.
Following the release of the SM5 wedge in January, Titleist announced the addition of a new TVD line that features the company's TX3 grooves and additional grinds options for the TVD-M and TVD-K.
The TX3 grooves on both wedges are deeper and 7 percent larger, which reduces the chance of flyers from the rough. Through testing, Vokey reports players will see up to 500 rpm of additional spin on full shots from the rough with the lower-lofted wedges, and 400 rpm of additional spin with high-lofted wedges.
A series of milled micro edges are machined into the face for consistent spin on partial shots. Each wedge also undergoes a face heat treatment process that increases the durability of the groove edge radius, which reduces the loss of spin due to wear.
The TVD-K was inspired through Vokey's work with a number of players including Adam Scott and Jason Dufner — both use TVD-K lob wedges — and has a wider, more cambered sole than any other Vokey model, making it easy to use out of the bunker but still playable around the green. The wedge comes in four lofts: 54-12 (new for this year), 56-12, 58-10 and 60-10 degrees.
“The K grind has been a huge hit for us,” Vokey said. “It’s only been on TOUR for a couple of years but we already have 30 guys using it. I think the secret is the cambered sole. It is wide and forgiving, but the camber keeps the club moving through the turf. So it’s playable in a variety of conditions.”
Compared the Vokey's SM5 K-Grind, the TVD-K has a slightly different look with a narrower sole and one-degree of less effective bounce.
The TVD-M has a new shape, with a more rounded teardrop profile that matches the TVD-K. The crescent-shaped M grind sole gives the wedge moderate effective bounce, making it a great all-condition wedge. The wedge comes in 50-08, 52-08, 54-10, 56-12, 58-08 and 60-08 degrees.
“We’ve had a lot of requests to match up the chassis, or shape, of the TVD-M with the TVD-K,” Vokey said. “It’s the natural progression of the series. We now have three distinct shapes in the Vokey family: the SM5 with a high toe peak, the rounded teardrop of the TVD, and the compact look of the Hand Ground series. We have a look to fit anyone’s eye.”
Titleist TVD-K and TVD-M will be available starting May 7 in two finishes, California Chrome and Black Ion, via custom order and at vokey.com/wedgeworks for $160. The TVD line is also fully-customizable — from length, lie, loft and weight porting, to toe engraving, personalized stamping, custom grips, shafts, shaftbands and ferrules.
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