50 Words or Less
The Cobra F8 fairway wood uses rails to improve turf interaction. Large footprint at address can be confidence inspiring.
If you’re not confident in your clubs, it’s hard to play good golf. A big part of having confidence is liking the way your clubs look. For many players, that means a big, reassuring head. Cobra has designed the F8 fairway wood with just those players in mind.
Where the Cobra F8+ fairway wood has a compact head, the standard KING F8 fairway wood has a large footprint. It has a round, symmetrical shape, and sits square at the 14.5 degree setting. Changing the setting on the MyFly8 hosel can alter that noticeably.
The look of the crown on the F8 FW is the same as the F8 driver. The color palette is toned down – black and grey – but there’s a lot going on with carbon fiber, “polymer crown trips,” and a Cobra alignment aid.
Sound & Feel
In contrast to the loud look of the crown, the impact sound is reserved. When the face meets the ball, there’s a quiet sound that’s somewhere between a click and a snap that’s devoid of metallic characteristics.
Feedback on the F8 FW is minimal. The impact sound changes only slightly on mishits and there’s not much feel difference in the hands.
As I’ve said in numerous other reviews, fairway wood play is not the strength of my game. It’s something I’ve improved a lot over the last couple years, but Henrik Stenson I am not. As such, my visual preferences affect my ability to use a club effectively more with a fairway wood than any other type of club. Much like the F8 driver, the F8 fairway wood does not fit those preferences. The large footprint makes me uneasy, and good contact is much harder to achieve.
While the Cobra KING F8 fairway wood isn’t for me, when it’s struck well, it’s a solid performer. Ball speed is high on the center of the face and remains stout on mishits. It’s not the highest launching fairway wood I’d tested, but for players seeking a stronger trajectory, that may be a good thing. Similarly, it’s not the lowest spinning FW, but, as PING has shown in some of their research, many players actually need more spin to maximize distance.
One of the major features that the KING F8 fairway woods boast is a set of Baffler Rails. The purpose of these rails is to help the club slide through the turf more easily, preserving more club head speed. The Baffler Rails vary in height based on the loft of the club – shorter in the 3/4 and longer in the 7/8.
I always find it hard to evaluate the effectiveness of features like the Baffler Rails. Their presence makes me pay more attention to the turf interaction, which does feel really good. But does it lead to more ball speed? As I’m unable to hit identical fat shots with and without rails, it’s hard for me to say.
Like the F8 driver, the F8 fairway wood allows you to choose from 8 different lofts via a hosel adjustment. This gives you a wide range of launch angles, spin rates, and face angles to choose from. If you like the look and feel of this club, you should be able to dial in solid performance.
Cobra has given golfers two fine choices in the fairway wood category this year with the F8 and the F8+. I applaud them for offering something for both the player who wants a more compact look and the player who wants a bigger head. With both having plenty of adjustability, all players should be able to dial in their ball flight and make those long approach shots a little less intimidating.