Meet the Vokey SM9 wedges

Meet the Vokey SM9 wedges

Vokey Design SM9 Wedges

Bob Vokey (along with Aaron Dill) makes a great wedge. Titleist could probably sell the SM8 wedges for a decade, making visual tweaks here and there to reskin an otherwise excellent product.

However, that's not how this works. Vokey, just like any engineer, is always looking to make their work better. And so, that's why there are SM9 wedges.

With this new generation of wedges, Vokey isn't pushing the boundaries of CG position or mass properties or other tenets of wedge design. However, the iterative process Vokey has made in those areas, along with a well-rounded lineup of lofts and grinds, gives a golfer total confidence that is crucial with a wedge in hand.

Vokey Design SM9 Wedges

More specifically, Vokey pinpoints his goal of ensuring contact in the optimum strike spot on the wedge: between the second and fifth (going up) grooves on the face. This position produces a more consistent flight with more spin. Getting dialed into that strike position, though, depends on a variety of factors, including the bounce and shape of the wedge, the turf conditions, the swing of the player and more.

The SM9 wedges -- along with a proper wedge fitting -- look to take out some of those variables. The big design key in the SM9 wedges that tries to eliminates some of these variables is similar to the SM8 wedges: center of gravity positioning. The SM8 wedges saw the center of gravity position move in front of the face, making consistent contact more likely. However, it was difficult to maintain that position in higher-lofted wedges, particularly on open-faced shots. In the SM9 wedges, then, Vokey focused on moving that CG position vertically in these wedges while keeping them in front of the face to prevent lesser performance on higher-lofted shots.

Vokey achieved this move in the SM9 by creating a new topline that is thicker -- albeit not to the naked eye -- with notched weighting to move the vertical CG position. Progressive hosel lengths, with longer hosels in the higher-lofted wedges, also move the CG position.

The grooves are also better in the SM9 wedges, with a new Spin Milled cutting process that is said to produce consistently sharper groove wedges in every wedge. Lower-lofted heads (46-54 degrees) have grooves that are narrower and deeper than higher-lofted (56 degrees and up) heads, which are wider and shallower to produce ideal spin conditions given the likely amount of speed and face contact time on shots.

SM9 wedges can be customized through WedgeWorks with six unique toe engravings, a variety of stamping and paint-fill options, as well as shaft, grip and ferrule options.

The SM9 family is available with six grind options (F, S, M, K, L and D) and in lofts from 46-62 degrees to create 23 different models in three standard finishes: Tour Chrome, Brushed Steel and Jet Black (and a Raw custom option). The stock shaft is the True Temper Dynamic Gold S200. The lineup is available Feb. 17 for $180 each.

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