Just when almost everything in golf shops seems to be painted white, Cleveland Golf has introduced an entire line of clubs – drivers, fairway woods, irons and wedges – that are totally black, even down to the name.
While they are certain to attract a lot of attention in the shops and at demo days, don’t look for the Cleveland Black Collection clubs to show up on your TV screen at the next Tour event. That’s because this latest offering from Cleveland is aimed specifically at the “average” golfer.
Let’s face it. Of the millions of people who play this game, few – very few – will ever have a single-digit handicap or hit a drive 250 yards. And that’s fine. In fact, that’s the very thing that gives golf such widespread appeal.
As countless teaching pros have told us over the years, golf is like sex. You don’t have to be a pro to enjoy it.
The Black series of clubs from Cleveland is designed for the great majority of golfers whose clubhead speed is somewhere short of Tour pros and top-level amateurs. These clubs are lightweight, forgiving and easy to hit.
More important, the clubs in the Cleveland Black series just might be the longest clubs on the market for players with slower swing speeds.
Starting with the driver, Cleveland has designed a 46-inch, 460-cc weapon that weighs just 265 grams. That’s less than 9.5 ounces, folks! The key is a 39-gram C. Kua Series shaft from Miyazaki. It’s basically the same shaft as the stock offering in Cleveland’s Launcher XL 270 driver but offered in softer flex patterns to promote an easy, high launch.
(An aside here: Miyazaki is the only premium shaft manufacturer that designs and engineers its shafts in four separate flex zones – butt, mid-butt, mid-tip and tip. By controlling the flex (0-9) in each of these four zones, Miyazaki can build shafts that deliver precise launch and spin characteristics, with a consistency unmatched by other shaft makers.
Moreover, the company can create shafts, be they regular, stiff, etc., with completely different flex patterns, and thus different launch and spin characteristics. For example, two stiff C. Kua Series shafts could have the exact same overall weight, but one with a Flex Code of 6424 would play completely differently from one with a 7355 Flex Code. Former national long drive champion Brian Pavlet uses a XX-stiff Miyazaki with a 7777 Flex Code in his competition driver.)
The driver head is designed to reduce drag and thus increase swing speed, and the high-density weight screw at the rear is positioned to move the center of gravity as low and deep as possible to promote a high, draw-biased ball flight.
The Black fairway woods are exact copies of the driver, right down to the same C. Kua 39 Series shafts. This is a big difference from every other line of fairway woods on the market, since all other companies use heavier shafts in their fairways than their drivers.
The CG Black irons and wedges feature multi-material construction, but it’s the thin titanium face that is the key to increased ball speed and more distance. The irons have progressive offset, helping the golfer square and launch the longer irons more easily. And both the irons and wedges feature larger face areas that inspire confidence at address and a deep, full cavity back that maximizes forgiveness on off-center hits.
Once again, it is a Miyazaki C. Kua Series graphite shaft that serves as the engine for the Black irons and wedges, this time in a 59-gram weight. (Lightweight Nippon NS Pro 850GH steel shafts are also available.) Both the irons and wedges feature the same Tour Zip Grooves and Laser Milled technology as all Cleveland irons and wedges, designed to maximize spin within USGA regulations.
The wedges are offered in 48-, 52-, 56- and 60-degree lofts in both steel and graphite shafts. The CG Black driver is available in 9-, 10.5- and 12-degree lofts, and the fairway woods are offered in a 16-degree three, a 19-degree five and a 22-degree seven wood. The entire CG Black lineup is available for left-handers, with the exception of the 12-degree driver and the seven wood.
CG Black clubs are available in golf shops now. The driver is priced at $400, with fairway woods at $230. A set of Black irons, 4-PW, runs $1,000 with Miyazaki graphite shafts, $900 with steel shafts, and the wedges are $150 with graphite and $140 with steel.
If you’ve lost a little clubhead speed over the years, or if you’re just looking for clubs that are longer and easy to hit, check out the complete line of CG Blacks--because lighter is definitely faster. And faster clubhead speed means more distance.