Callaway head of R&D, Dr. Alan Hocknell, is a passionate golfer. CEO Chip Brewer instructed him to create his “dream iron” – one that Alan would want in his own bag. No limit on time, materials or even cost. More than 70 people were involved. Engineers, metallurgists, industrial designers, Tour pros, professional club fitters; all took part in conceptualizing, developing, refining and testing.
Hocknell set out to create a player’s shaped head that incorporated all of Callaway’s best performance-enhancing technologies – Face Cup for increased ball speed; Standing Wave for easy launch; Exo-cage body structure for increased forgiveness. The result would combine the sleek appearance, feel and workability of a player’s iron with the distance and forgiveness of a game-improvement club.
These irons required several “firsts” to come together in order to create a new head design that offers the best performance package of any iron in Callaway history. Every element and dimension was assessed – overall shape, face size, face thickness, cavity shape, sole, topline, CG location, hosel and shaft. Impact dynamics including the synergies of how each part supported or hindered the other components were painstakingly scrutinized. Significant improvements were made to the clubhead’s Exo-Cage construction. Callaway incorporated a new, entirely hollow hosel that saves a full 20 grams, reassigned within the head to raise moment of intertia (MOI) for enhanced stability.
Increased vertical stiffness allows the face to take on more impact load. The term for this is “energy lensing.” In Epic irons, it raises the efficiency level of the face to promote faster ball speed and distance. Combined with face thicknesses finished to a tolerance of 1/1,000th of an inch helped elevate the coefficient of restitution (COR) up close to the USGA limit of .830 in the 3-iron through 7-iron. It’s the first time Callaway has had so many irons in a single set, this close to the limit.
Every iron features an ultra-thin, ultra-fast face that’s turbocharged by an improved 360 Face Cup architecture that reduces the rim thickness to 1mm at its thinnest point. It allows the rim to flex more readily, consistently and at greater speed for greater distance. It delivers ball speed on impact toward the toe, heel, high up and especially down low on the face – the most common mis-hit. The result is more distance on nearly every swing. This is the first time Callaway has incorporated 360 Face Cup technology into every iron in a Players’ iron set.
Fundamental changes were made to Callaway’s Internal Standing Wave (ISW) technology, a weighting method that affects launch, spin and feel. ISW is a flat, asymmetrically shaped piece of metal that helps pinpoint center of gravity (CG) location to promote optimum launch and spin in each head. It helps control vibration to promote unique feel. ISW is constructed of MIM’ed tungsten. MIM stands for Metal Injection Molding, an injection-molding process using finely powdered metal to create intricately shaped parts with tremendous precision. Parts spend up to 41 hours of furnace-time at temperatures up to 2500 degrees Fahrenheit to fuse the powder into a solid piece. It’s the first time Callaway has ever incorporated MIM’ed weight in an iron, which allows them to position a large amount of weight in a small space. This process allows for a new combination of size, shape and weight to precisely position the CG location differently in each individual iron. Extremely low in the long-irons to promote easier launch and high, long flight; progressively higher as loft increases to promote a lower flight in the short-irons for added control; plus, a balance of easy launch and control in the middle-irons.
Each clubhead component is precision-milled and robotically laser-welded for maximum integrity and cohesion between parts. It takes 65 days and more than 200 processes, steps and inspections are required to create each head.
Offering more than 240 iron shafts to choose from, Club Champion can custom fit you for the perfect set of irons. Unlike many club fitters, Club Champion even fits for swingweight. Find out if the Epic Irons are ideal for you. Schedule your fitting today.