Unique fade measured on launch monitor

So I use a GC Quad launch monitor and there are Trackman stats about how the modern tour pros shape it. Usually their spin axis is double their launch direction (not launch angle, I’m talking about whether they start it left or right of the target line).

For example, with a 6-iron they’ll start it 2 degrees to the right and their spin axis will be 4 degrees rightward, creating a push-fade.

However, there is a special kind of fade that’s better than this and it is possible to create this through ABS among other things. The spin axis has to be HALF of the launch direction or less than half.

So if you start it 2 degrees to the right, the spin axis is 1 degree right, this is only achievable through a dead solid center hit and very precise face to path control, forward leaning shaft at impact, etc. This actually maximizes the smash factor which is FAR more important than the speed.

I haven’t been able to replicate this on a full swing yet but I did it with a 22* loft 4-iron half-swing and the smash factor on the GC Quad was showing 1.51 smash factor and this launch monitor has a solid reputation for being accurate so I trust the numbers.

I believe this kind of fade is the one Hogan and Trevino used to hit in their prime, and they relied on smash factor from hitting it so solid to get distance instead of clubhead speed.

I would need Lag or Two or some other higher-up to decipher this spin axis and direction stuff. I’m probably totally wrong here but I don’t believe anyone walking can change something 1* different at full speed- it’s all a best guess and effort isn’t it, but if they can on demand, and routinely, that’s incredible stuff.

I do the Tommy Bolt routine, when he said if you aim left, set up left, swing left, and the ball doesn’t go left you will win someone else’s money most of the time. :smile:

What kind of 4 iron? It would have to be a high COR design to achieve that, even then it sounds a bit odd. 1.51 is a ridiculously good driver number. Irons would be lower, even if they’re a high COR design, because of increased spin loft (more glancing blows for to loft).

I would actually argue maximizing smash factor on an iron is not ideal, because the only way you achieve it is by significantly lowering spin loft. This wouldn’t work well for shots into greens IMO. Maybe useful to learn a good stinger type shot.

When you say it starts 2 degrees right and has a spin axis of 4 degrees, you mean 2 degrees right of their swing path, correct?

No, that’s the club data you’re talking about, I’m just talking about the ball data. When it comes to club data, 2 degrees right launch direction with 4 degrees right spin axis would probably be 1 degree open to the path or so. Slices and hooks occur when the spin axis is more than double the launch direction.

Of note, spin axis would actually shift mid flight…as velocity and friction meet our dear friend gravity. Causes a plane shift right ward to maintain velocity and vector

About the smash factor, 72holeouts just explained how it’s possible to have a higher one, through weight. On quarter swings and half swings, because the shaft isn’t flexing as much as it would on a full swing, the dynamic loft will be lower and that can result in showing >1.5 smash factor even with irons.

But it is possible to get 1.48 smash factor with a 22* loft 4-iron (Arias true zero offset btw) on a full swing through increasing the weight. I just increased the swingweight up to E7 and on a really good hit it showed 1.48 smash factor. Though I didn’t achieve the half spin axis flight that was the point of this thread so it could’ve been even higher if I had.

I shouldn’t have used “1 degree launch direction 0.5 degree spin axis” example, that is essentially a straight shot. But I do believe it is possible to do a 2 degree launch direction and 1 degree spin axis flight consistently as long as we have the correct clubs and swing. Bonus points if they are both rightward for righties and leftward for lefties such as myself, it is by far the best type of fade to hit.

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@Flushballstriker Some clarifying questions:

  1. Please define launch direction. When you say a ball starts 2* right, this is 2* right relative to what? A static target alignment?
  2. Is this (the unique/special fade) your theory, or something you read about and/or is documented elsewhere?
  3. Post your numbers, please. Curious on the context of you being able to accomplish these numbers.

Are you claiming spin axis is literally changing mid flight or just observing the ball fall to the right at the end?

This is also a curious statement. Spin loft is the differential between the club’s path and the dynamic loft… So, you are definitely not maximizing that on every shot… Maybe optimizing is what you’re meaning, which has a very different definition/meaning to me.

I feel I’m in danger of becoming the next JeffMann, oh well. Too many odd things in this thread I cannot understand.

Yes, relative to the target line, nobody on the planet is consistently starting 0.0 degree launch direction every time, they either start it left or right.

It is my theory because I have a gosh darn pull hook miss from going across the ball instead of from the inside along with a closed club face to boot.

So I studied and watched a bunch of Trevino and Moe and noticed how they come from the inside and really try to stick the club head down the target line after impact (well, they try but it’s still moving to the left).

I tried to replicate this on mini swings by staying on the address plane from P1-P2 (MORAD terminology, shaft parallel to ground in takeaway). Then I start down from P2 to impact, still on the same plane as address, then after impact immediately shifting the club head higher onto the elbow plane like Moe and Trevino did.

That plane shift after impact, provided you were on plane in the downswing, doesn’t cause a hook by the way, it actually slows down the rate of closure because the face wants to be perpendicular to the plane it’s on (hence Moe demonstrating with his pendulum example if you’ve seen it).

The club face will only prematurely close and cause a hook if you weren’t on plane in the downswing and at impact, only a handful of golfers can do that, it’s like swinging on a razor’s edge when it comes to plane.

So being on plane and slowing the rate of closure down along with compression from a forward shaft lean at impact will cause this type of fade.

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Gotcha. If it’s relative to a static target line, it’s not mysterious at all why different fades would have different launch direction to spin axis ratios…

Anyway, I wish you luck in your efforts to improve. Sounds like you have specific plans on improving. Post a swing and numbers if you’re comfortable. Still kinda curious what you’re actually doing.

I’m claiming that a properly struck golf ball does not fall out of the sky. It "descends "…a.k.a. decent angle. Spin axis must shift, once velocity is overtaken by gravity, friction, etc.

Thus, as a ball with “minor” draw bias moves rightward, it eventually falls onto itself. An inverted dive for pilots. The most efficient way to re-vector energy. All good ballstrikers do this…

Nope, maximized…even on miss hits. My release pattern produces maximum angles, regardless of club. Pitching machine stuff…opposing forces and vectors.

Not trying to complicate…its just extremely difficult to explain. Its 3 dimensions, not 2…as the club exits…regardless of strike, my numbers are always maximum. Optimal is not what im going for…im talking clubface stability.

So, you’re staying that the axis of rotation of the ball shifts because velocity is overtaken by gravity, friction, etc…?

You’ve lost me there, that makes zero sense. If you have a resource to direct me to, I’d be happy to read it and dive in and figure it out. If not, we can move on.

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Right, I’m a fairly literal person, and you are not maximizing spin loft on every shot. Although I get what you’re saying now in terms of holding angles.

The way to maximize spin loft in a literal sense is to take a lob wedge and hit an open faced flop with a descending blow. Not a good way to get around a course though. Higher spin loft is generally associated with lower smash, ironically.

This a great read…on topic, at least for me.

Okay… No, I don’t see anything in that reference that supports what you’re talking about. We’ll agree to disagree.

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Maybe this can shed some light on it…

The ball has rotational energy causing it to spin. AFAIK, golf balls are always spinning when they land. I don’t think there are any true knucklers occurring in golf shots.

If a ball did run out of its spin energy, it would stop spinning…I don’t see how it could develop a new spin axis in some other direction.

So I agree; I don’t understand your claim that a ball has “draw bias” but lands as a fade. That could happen I suppose in a cross wind, where eventually wind and gravity pull the ball against the direction spin is taking it in. But then it isn’t really a fade. It’s still a “draw,” but one which the wind is carrying to the right.