Drive Golf Performance Blog

Drive Golf Performance Blog

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Testing the TaylorMade Driver Adapter Settings

There are 12 settings on the TaylorMade Adapter. The adapter allows you to adjust the loft, lie and face angle of the club. According to TaylorMade, for the +/- 2 degree adapter, each of the 12 sleeve movements increases or decreases loft by 0.5 - 0.75 degrees, lie by 0.5 - 0.75 degrees and face angle by 1 - 2 degrees.

We put this to the test recently. We hit 6 shots with each of the settings and recorded the results on a Trackman launch monitor.

M3 Tuning Manual


The loft for a 10.5 degree driver changes from 8.5 to 12.5, the lie angle from 56-60 degrees and the face angle from 4 degrees closed to 4 degrees open.

Technically changing the settings only changes the face angle but the loft is changed when the player moves the club back to square at address. In other words the players reaction to the face angle change is what changes the loft.



For the test we used a TaylorMade M3 10.5 degree driver with a 45 inch Accra Tour Z 465 M4 shaft. Titleist Pro V1 golf balls were used and it was a perfect evening for testing, 20 degrees with no wind.

3 shots were hit with a setting before changing to the next setting and after all settings were used another 3 were hit with each setting. The tee height remained constant through the test.

The main interest with a driver is length and accuracy. We wanted to see how they would change with each of the settings. The parameters recorded were carry, total distance, club head speed, ball speed, dispersion, height, launch angle and spin.

The Results




Setting
Lie Angle
Club Speed MPH
Ball Speed MPH
Carry Yards
Total Distance Yards
Dispersion Feet
Launch Angle
Spin Rate
Height Feet
10.5
56
102.3
150.6
238.6
262.6
40.2
12.5
2623
90
9.75
56.5
102.7
150.7
235.7
258.9
34.6
11.4
2712
86
9.0
57.25
102.3
151.9
236.3
263.1
40.8
10.7
2306
80
8.5
58
102.7
151.3
234.9
261.4
22.9
11.0
2752
78
9.0
58.5
101.6
151.0
242.7
266.0
18.8
12.1
2519
91
9.75
59.25
101.9
151.0
239.2
264.7
51.75
11.5
2482
83
10.5
60
102.5
151.2
241.9
263.5
43.5
12.7
2704
95
11.25
59.25
101.6
149.7
241.1
262.9
66.7
13.0
2806
95
12.0
58.5
101.9
147.6
237.2
255.1
64.2
13.9
2978
109
12.5
58
102.4
148.7
239.3
257.2
50.0
13.6
3111
106
12.0
57.25
102.2
147.6
239.4
255.9
31.4
13.8
2976
111
11.25
56.5
101.3
148.3
234
251.2
20.1
11.7
3393
98




Analysis

 

We can see the golfer's speed remained similar through all the settings going from 101.3 to 102.7 just a variance of 1.4 mph. This shows a good level of consistency in swinging through the test. We want to see the variances in the settings coming from the club rather then the swing. Also the golfer tends to react to the ball flight, so given enough time the golfer will adjust the swing to make the settings work best for them but to minimise this we kept the number of shots we each setting to 3 before switching to another.

We can see from the table that there is a variance in the results from the settings, carries range from 234 to 242.7 yards, totals from 251.2 to 266, dispersions from 18.8 to 66.7 feet, launch angles from 10.7 to 13.9, spin rates from 2306 to 3393 rpm and height from 78 to 111 feet.

The carry distances tended to be the most around the middle loft settings, the highest 242.7 at the 9.0 upright setting and the lowest 234 at the 11.25 setting. The longest overall distances came from the lower loft settings, the longest 266 at the 9.0 upright setting and the lowest 251.2 from the 11.25 setting. We would expect both these to happen, highest carry around the middle lofts with lower landing angles from the lower lofts leading to more run and more overall distance, and higher lofts leading to higher landing angles and less run and overall distances.

The highest ball speeds came from the lower lofts and the lowest ball speeds came from the higher lofts. This would also be expected, lowering loft should lead to an increase in ball speed due to a reduction in spin loft. 

We can see lower launch angles and heights with the lower lofts and higher launch angles and heights with the higher lofts. Again, this is expected. We can also see lower spins with the lower lofts, 9.0 setting giving the lowest 2306 rpm and the highest spin rates 3393 and 3111 coming from the 11.25 and 12.5 settings. Again this would also be expected.

The best dispersion came from the 9.0 upright setting only 18.8 feet on average from the centre line with the worst dispersion being 11.25 upright setting being 66.7 feet on average from the centre line. In general the worst dispersions came from the higher lofted upright settings which would promote a more right to left shot which this golfer probably didn't like.

Overall the best setting for this golfer was the 9.0 upright setting which gave the best carry, best total and least dispersion. The worst was the 12.0 upright setting which had the fifth lowest carry, second lowest total and second worst dispersion.

Conclusion


Changing the settings does make a difference, both in length and accuracy. Nearly 15 yards in distance and over a 40 feet improvement in average dispersion too between the worst and best settings in each category. It is definitely worth experimenting with the settings to see what works best and even better if you can get to a PGA professional or club fitter who can help you figure out your best setting.

Comments and questions are appreciated.


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