High handicap & 718 AP2 irons

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By Darren M

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  • 15 Replies
  1. Darren M

    0 Posts

    Hi all, First time poster long time lurker. I’m currently playing off 23 but have been told many times my swing is from someone a lot lower. I’ve just had my first proper club fitting and was told it was definitely my old and cheap clubs that have been letting me down. During fitting we went through many makes and shafts and settled on the AP2 irons. Using Trackman, I couldn’t argue with what I could see on the screen. With the AP2’s compared to other makes my dispersion was tight and length consistent. I was happy, paid my cash and am now awaiting delivery. My question now, having looked at the write ups and reviews is, have I jumped the gun? I can hardly believe I’m good enough to use these clubs but can’t argue with the results on test. Am I worrying about nothing and find these will give me a new lease of life or will I find them just too hot to handle and all my bad shots will be magnified and show me up for a true 20 pluser? Thanks for any input.

  2. Doug E
    Urbana, MD

    0 Posts

    My first reaction is that the AP2s are not something targeted at higher handicap players. Though somewhat forgiving, relative to the MB for instance, they are intended to be hit somewhere "in the neighborhood" of the sweetspot. If you miss by 3/4 of an inch you will pay dearly in distance. With an AP1, certainly you will not typically see as much loss of distance.

    I am not a fitter, so am not sure why one would even put AP2s in your hand as a 23 index, but obviously, he thought your swing was good enough to try them. When I first started playing AP2s back with the 712 version, I was a 12 handicap, and I too thought they might be too much club for me. (I was coming from Titleist 755s then.) I struggled with the AP2 5 iron, but otherwise, I got better. I eventually put an AP1 5i in the bag and hit it so much better than my AP2 5i that I decided to try adding an AP1 6i. Huge difference in forgiveness between the AP1 and AP2 back then. I am now presently a 7 (6.5 index) and use newer AP2s with AP3-718 long irons and can really appreciate the added forgiveness with the AP3s.

    If you were fitted indoors on a mat, as opposed to outside from different lies on turf, I would be cautious about the fitting numbers. Something doesn't sound right. AP2s are weaker lofts than both AP3s and AP1s (by 3* in the AP3 7i, the typical fitting iron) so you wouldn't think your distance numbers should be better with AP2 than AP1/3. Your spin, launch angle, etc. may be better, but frankly, I would still lean towards forgiveness at this stage of your game. FWIW, I presently get about 10 yards less carry distance with my AP2 7i than I do with my AP3 7i on well hit center contact shots. Granted, different shafts, but one is 31* of loft, the other 34*.

    Using less forgiving blade-style irons is fine if you are so consistent that hitting the sweetspot is matter-of-fact for you. But, at a 23 handicap, that typically isn't the case, unless you are absolutely a terrible chipper and putter of the ball. If I were you, before I marked up those new irons out on the course, I would check with the fitter/retailer and voice my concerns. Make sure you have the option to return them at full credit in case things don't materialize like the launch monitor suggested they would.

    For me, AP2s are fantastic irons. Been playing them for years now, first the 712s and now the 716s. Like them more than my AP3s, because I feel I have the best control with them. Yes, I get more distance with an AP3, but for me the game is about control. Hopefully for you it is too and you'll hit them as well on the course as you did off the mats. They are typically much more accurate in the right player's hands than a GI club. Good luck. Let us know how it turns out.
  3. 0 Posts

    Doug E said:

    My first reaction is that the AP2s are not something targeted at higher handicap players. Though somewhat forgiving, relative to the MB for instance, they are intended to be hit somewhere "in the neighborhood" of the sweetspot. If you miss by 3/4 of an inch you will pay dearly in distance. With an AP1, certainly you will not typically see as much loss of distance.

    I am not a fitter, so am not sure why one would even put AP2s in your hand as a 23 index, but obviously, he thought your swing was good enough to try them. When I first started playing AP2s back with the 712 version, I was a 12 handicap, and I too thought they might be too much club for me. (I was coming from Titleist 755s then.) I struggled with the AP2 5 iron, but otherwise, I got better. I eventually put an AP1 5i in the bag and hit it so much better than my AP2 5i that I decided to try adding an AP1 6i. Huge difference in forgiveness between the AP1 and AP2 back then. I am now presently a 7 (6.5 index) and use newer AP2s with AP3-718 long irons and can really appreciate the added forgiveness with the AP3s.

    If you were fitted indoors on a mat, as opposed to outside from different lies on turf, I would be cautious about the fitting numbers. Something doesn't sound right. AP2s are weaker lofts than both AP3s and AP1s (by 3* in the AP3 7i, the typical fitting iron) so you wouldn't think your distance numbers should be better with AP2 than AP1/3. Your spin, launch angle, etc. may be better, but frankly, I would still lean towards forgiveness at this stage of your game. FWIW, I presently get about 10 yards less carry distance with my AP2 7i than I do with my AP3 7i on well hit center contact shots. Granted, different shafts, but one is 31* of loft, the other 34*.

    Using less forgiving blade-style irons is fine if you are so consistent that hitting the sweetspot is matter-of-fact for you. But, at a 23 handicap, that typically isn't the case, unless you are absolutely a terrible chipper and putter of the ball. If I were you, before I marked up those new irons out on the course, I would check with the fitter/retailer and voice my concerns. Make sure you have the option to return them at full credit in case things don't materialize like the launch monitor suggested they would.

    For me, AP2s are fantastic irons. Been playing them for years now, first the 712s and now the 716s. Like them more than my AP3s, because I feel I have the best control with them. Yes, I get more distance with an AP3, but for me the game is about control. Hopefully for you it is too and you'll hit them as well on the course as you did off the mats. They are typically much more accurate in the right player's hands than a GI club. Good luck. Let us know how it turns out.

    Nailed it!
  4. Johnny Tee
    Mississauga, ON

    0 Posts

    In one word, no. Using more words for a better answer, you should be fine. It all depends on the combination and it sounds like you found yours after trying various makes and shafts on Trackman. The beauty of the newer AP2's is that any mishit is not severely punished like it might be with a pure blade. I have a handicap in the mid teens, use AP2's and love them. Assuming you ordered your clubs to your specs, I suggest you wait for your new clubs to arrive and enjoy your purchase! I don't think you will be disappointed.
  5. Don O
    Madison, WI

    0 Posts

    As a 22 that has moved to an 18 this year, I'd agree with Doug. I don't have enough consistency (yet) to give up forgiveness in hopes of shaping shots better into the green. I did move to AP3 this year as the AP1 offered no advantage. It is important to look at your score from tee to green to see where you are leaking strokes, if not with your irons. All handicaps are not created equal. 23 is usually some combination of wayward drives and not getting down in 2 (..or 3 or 4) from within 10 yards of the green. An investment into properly fit irons is a step in the right direction.
  6. Kev2177
    england, 0

    0 Posts

    Handicap's should not be looked into when buying clubs to a certain degree. A high handicap could strike a nice ball but can't chip and putt. They might have trouble of the tee with a driver and be losing distance. Your should buy clubs that fit your ball striking and not a handicap number. My opinion.
  7. 0 Posts

    "Normally" I wouldn't think of that type of handicap fitting into AP2's, but that's just a generalization. If the fitter is a good fitter, and you tried numerous different combos and the AP2 was a clear winner then so be it.

    You hit those shots and had good results, don't let negative or even positive posts (even this positive one) dictate what your outcome becomes. You bought them so play them, right? You'll know if your hitting them better than your previous set. I hope they work out for you. If they don't they'll be easy to sell anyways, but hopefully thats not the outcome.
  8. 0 Posts

    Titleist makes a range of very good irons from the AP1 at one end of the spectrum to the blade at the other end. They are all very good clubs and I personally think you can learn to hit any one of them. Pick the ones you want and have a good time with them.
  9. 0 Posts

    Thank you very much for the replies.
    I’m more confident than I was before thanks to the comments. I definitely feel that I have been fitted for my swing and not my handicap.
    I was asked during the fitting whether I wanted to grow into my clubs as a player or if I needed as much help as possible, I honestly hadn’t thought like that. I thought I needed help but my fitter explained I was a much better striker of the ball than I gave myself credit for. Buoyed by this info I plumped for the AP2s hoping to grow as a player.
    I should be getting my hands on these beauties very soon so I’ll be sure to give you all an update on how it goes on the course.
  10. Tom J
    Vernon Hills, IL

    0 Posts

    Enjoyed the discussion, and yes, Darren, I'd be interested to hear an update when you're ready!
  11. Deno
    Hawthorne, NJ

    0 Posts

    Good Luck Darren. Keep posting your progress. Enjoy your new irons.
  12. Edward K
    Wesley Chapel, FL

    0 Posts

    If you hit the sweet spot on a good path, you'll get good results, regardless of what you're swinging. Yes, I'm an MB guy that should be hitting an AP2, and some days feel like I should play an AP1. Go with your gut, grasp the fundamentals, and you can hit anything. There is NOTHING like hitting one on the button with a forged club!
  13. Frank P
    Port St. Lucie, FL

    0 Posts

    Interesting thread, though I must admit, in the fittings that I have had, 2 with Mike Warobick and 1 with Ryan Chrysler, both Certified Titleist Fitters in FL, they never asked me if I wanted to grow into clubs. We tried everything in the line with different shafts and found the right combo for the here and now. I'm not a pure striker of the ball and not a great worker of the ball. Wasn't then and still am not now. These fitters put me into the best technology for my game.
  14. 0 Posts

    Just saw this thread, and though a week or two late, thought I would chip in.
    I have never owned AP2s. I did have a set of 710 AP1s, and I was not entirely happy with them so I went to another brand. After a couple sets with that brand, I was fitted with AP3s last Fall and purchased them in the Spring. I have been totally satisfied with my results. I can tell you that when I was comparing the AP2s to the AP1s at the fitting centre a couple years ago, I actually hit the AP2s better. I play off an index that has been as low as 7.9, and right now is around 10.0. I like a more forgiving iron, but an important intangible is the look of a club, and the confidence it gives you. If you feel better standing over a shot with an AP2 in your hand vs an AP1, that is half the battle. One of the reasons I switched to the AP3s is that I love the look of the club. Its profile is 100Xs better than my previous set. Consequently, I am hitting better iron shots. I know there are other factors at play, but you have to have the confidence standing over the ball that I have the right club in my hand and I can hit this shot. If you are worried that you should be holding an AP1 in your hand you may as well walk up to the bunker and pond and dump your ball in.
    Don't get hung up on titles. Whatever club feels best, and you hit best, go with it. If your fitter said AP2s, and you like them, don't worry about anything else.
  15. 0 Posts

    A little update for you all but I suppose I better explain some stuff before hand.
    I’ve never hit anyone else’s clubs, ever, because I never wanted to experience club envy. The only clubs ever bought are a set of Adams clubs in my probably 6 year golfing career.
    I don’t know what feel is and I’ve heard and felt the perfect strike a few times but not regularly. Like I’ve mentioned, a some people, even my fitter, have said I’ve got a really good swing (I’ve always thought I was just crap) and my putting is shocking hence my 23 handicap.

    I’ve now got my clubs and I’ve played one round - today.

    I am stunned. Absolutely buzzing. Today I hit the kind of shots I could only of dreamt of. On my fit I wanted to attack the flag and today I did it. Not just once but maybe half a dozen times and with different clubs. I’m not saying I hit every shot like a pro but I did roughly what I wanted. Shots felt effortless, sounded sublime and some were lazer guided. I’m in Titleist heaven. Obviously, this isn’t just me, a lot of the credit must go to my fitter. I spent hours hitting different clubs and shafts until the Titleist AP2’s became the clear winner. I couldn’t tell you if I tried AP3’s or not as I’d tried so many different club heads it was a blur.

    Again, I’ll give you all an update in a couple of weeks when I’ve really given these clubs a test. The only thing I can say is to trust your fitter, trust the figures you’re producing. I can’t even say trust your instinct, I had none, a total open book. All I can say is get fitted properly, these clubs are a revelation, even for a 23 handicap. Like people have said in this thread, don’t get hung up on labels. I did when I researched my chosen club. I had nothing to worry about.
    I have a smile a mile wide and a massive hunger for golf that Titleist has given me.

    More updates to follow.
  16. JKissoon
    Ajax, ON

    0 Posts

    I went for an iron fitting this year (I won the RBC Open Titleist Contest) and the fitter gave me the AP1, AP2, and AP3 irons to hit. I am also a very high handicapper but my friend who is a very low handicapper said it's my club selection which has me high.

    Anyhow, the fitter also said I am an AP2 guy. With the AP1 and AP3 I was missing the center of the face and losing distance compared to the AP2. He thinks the smaller head profile suits my eye better which enables me to hit the ball better.

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