That’s how long it took for me to realize that Edel wedges are unlike any wedge that I’ve ever played. The feeling of the club interacting with the turf was so unusual and so good that I turned to Nick Sherburne, founder of Club Champion, smiled, and said, “You’re right, these are special.”
Let me back up a bit to tell you how I got to that fitting and why I think you would benefit from getting one of your own.
The Best Booth
A few years ago, at my first PGA Show, I came across a booth full of beautiful, unique, hand-crafted clubs. It was the Edel Golf booth. I had a passing familiarity with the brand beforehand, but seeing that booth ignited something bordering on obsession. Every subsequent year that I’ve been to the PGA Show, I’ve gone with high expectations for Edel and they’ve always met them (see their 2015 booth HERE).
The problem was that I never had a chance to put their clubs into play. When you hand-craft every club, they’re not readily available to demo at the local big boxes. Also, custom fitting is a huge part of the Edel process, and I didn’t know any Edel fitters. Until recently.
Edel Comes to Club Champion
In late 2014, I was doing some testing with our partner and Top 100 Club Fitter, Club Champion, and Nick mentioned to me that they were bringing Edel wedges into their fitting matrix. He talked to me about why, in a matrix that already included dozens of wedges, he felt Edel was unique, and that he wanted to work together to try to put some in my bag. Convincing me wasn’t hard.
There are a number of things about the Edel wedge that makes it stand apart from others on the market, both visually and in terms of performance. Most of these features are centered around aligning three centers: the center of gravity, the center of the club head, and the center of the grooves. Very few wedges have their center of gravity, or sweet spot, on the center of the club face – most are towards the heel. Edel wedges have shorter hosels and significant heel relief to move the center of gravity to the center of the head. They also extend the grooves nearly all the way to the toe to place the center of the grooves in line with the center of the head. The result of all this is a wedge that feels extremely solid at impact.
The other major difference between Edel and other wedges is the amount of bounce. Edel wedges have a lot. The research that supports this was done by David Edel and Top 10 Golf Digest Instructor Mike Adams over many years. They found that inadequate bounce led to fat shots and a myriad of swing flaws designed to avoid the fat shot. In essence, even thin shots can be caused by having too little bounce. How do you know how much bounce you need? I’m glad you asked…
The Edel wedge fitting process was developed and has been refined over the years by David Edel and Mike Adams. Their research and testing has included not only Tour players, but also recreational golfers of all abilities. Edel works with the best fitters, such as Club Champion, to make sure that every Edel wedge is fit perfectly to the golfer. The fitting can take place indoors or outdoors, so there’s no limit on when you can be fit. You can find an Edel fitter near you on Edel’s website.
The heart of the fitting is finding the correct grind and bounce for the player. This starts by having their shaft lean and angle of attack measured. Nick, having worked with me for many years, already knew that I have a shallow attack angle but a lot of shaft lean. Most players will work through each of the eight different grinds to find the right one, but Nick put me right into the “Trapper” grind which created the “wow, that’s good” reaction I described earlier. I did test other grinds to confirm the fit, and Nick was right on.
Once we found the right grind, we started testing shafts. While wedge shafts are an afterthought to many players, Edel recognizes their importance and places 25 different shafts in their fitting system. These shafts vary in weight, flex, and material so that they can fit any player. Nick and I settled on the Nippon VW wedge shaft based on the launch monitor numbers and the feel.
The final step in my fitting was selecting lofts. The Edel fitting system includes 56 and 52 degree wedges which allow the fitter to find the distance gaps that the player needs to fill. Edel Golf makes wedges at every loft from 46-64 degrees, so you can get exactly what you need without compromising the sole.
In addition to meeting the performance needs of the golfer, Edel also wants to meet the golfer’s needs for style, fun, and personality. Each wedge can be hand stamped with the golfer’s name, initials, or anything else you can think of. Additionally, the paint fill can be personalized to match your favorite team or alma mater. If you really want to stand out, Edel also offers sand-blasted logos and designs, hand-etched wedges, and more. You can see some of their most creative work HERE.
In the Bag
The winter is a restless time for an equipment junkie like myself. Very few clubs, especially new ones, can feel secure. My new Edel wedges are the exception. Based on the performance I’ve seen on everything from full shots to pitches and chips, I’ve never been more excited about my short game. If you want to feel that excitement, and get rid of the chili-dips and skulled chips, find an Edel fitter near you and get some Edel wedges in your bag.