Review: TaylorMade TP xFT Wedges

Changing the “face” of wedges!
Wedges and their grooves are all the talk of 2010. Whether you like the rule or could care less, TaylorMade gives you the option to play either grooves. But maybe even better than that, once you get comfortable with this wedge, you will never have to worry about old worn-out grooves, because a couple of turns on the screws holding the faceplate in and you can refresh your grooves. The conforming grooves are bright red in the back pocket of the wedge, while non-conforming grooves are black.
There are more to these wedges than just the faceplates.  The grinds are very well done too.  The mid-aggressive C-grind on the higher lofted, higher bounce wedges is really nice.  The soles are thin, while the weight is all right behind the sweet spot of the face.  I really like the headshape too, it is somewhat rounded, but the leading edge is right in line with the hosel.  I wasn’t at all distracted by the faceplate, it really isn’t noticeable while standing over the wedges.  The faceplate is dulled and fits tightly in where any normal wedge has a dulled groove area.

The KBS wedge Hi-rev shafts are great for control, yet adding a few revolutions of extra spin.  They do hit high, similar to regular KBS shafts, and might be just a couple of yards longer, it was hard for me to tell since I switched lofts.  This actually worked out really well for my bag since I dropped down to 2 wedges in place of my typical 3 wedge set.  In the TP xFT wedges I am playing a 54* and a 58*

The 54* is used as a gap wedge and has filled that hole nicely.  While I lost a couple of yards off my 52*/53* that I typically play, it does fit the gap nicely.  I’ve found great control with this wedge and more than enough spin.  I’ve tried both faceplates and noticed the differences between the two.  On full shots, the non-conforming/U-grooves, impart all kinds of spin, putting it near the top of the list for spin, while the conforming/V-grooves reduce spin some.  I found the difference to be a gap of about 6-8 yards.  The U-grooves tend to suck back about 3-4 yards or so and the V-grooves tend to roll forward about 3-4 yards or if they both go forward the V-grooves roll about 6-8 yard further.

The 58* wedge is used for everything else inside of 90 yards.  I play it out of the sand, I use it for flops, chips, pitches; just about anything I can imagine.  The versatile C-grind and high bounce allow many options for each shot.  I found the aggressive groove plate to really control distance nicely, while the conforming grooves rolled out a considerable amount on most touch shots.

Because the faceplates are forged and the bodies are cast, the feel is something unique.  They feel similar to a cavity back iron; there is a kind of hollowness to the feeling.  While they are solid and the screws pull the face down tight, the rubber spacer behind the face dampens the feel just a little.  It takes some getting used to, it is not harsh or void of all feeling, just different.

While I know these have been out for a while, they really could be the last wedges you ever have to buy.  They come with a promotional extra faceplate and picking up a few extra at the $40 each might be a good investment for the amateur since you don’t need to change to V-grooves for 14 years.  While TaylorMade won’t be producing the U-groove faceplates after 2010, they are small enough to store a bunch of them in your bag or garage compared to a stockpile of wedges which would take up considerable space.  So you can change the “face” of you wedges for years to come without ever buying another new wedge.

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