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Review: Titleist 913F Fairway Woods
Spoiler alert: this club flies a heck of a long way. Walking away from my testing session with the Titleist 913F fairway woods that was all I could think to myself over and over again. I’m not someone with herculean distance; my current 3-wood, if I get it just right, is good for about 205 yards of carry with another 20 or so of roll. But I was nuking the 913F for 225 yards of carry on some shots with a high, arcing trajectory I’ve never gotten with a fairway metal before – just an insane distance for me with a fairway metal. Sure the club is well designed and attractive, and has just about the easiest and most comprehensive set of customization features I’ve ever seen. All of that’s well and good. But before you can fully process all of that you really have to get over just how incomprehensibly far this club makes a ball go.
So, hopefully now that I’ve fully prepared you for the plain silly distance this thing travels, let’s try and take a more nuanced look at the 913F.
Okay, so we’re not quite done talking about the distance. As mentioned, 20 yards of carry added over my normal 3-wood. I’m still trying to figure out how that happens. A lot of companies will tout the technological advantages they’ve made over previous models in order to set themselves apart from competitors, but rarely in my experience does it manifest itself in such huge gains. And the fact that Titleist has made these gains without any gimmicky proprietary clubface material or clubhead design, but rather by simply optimizing the clubhead weighting and offering an incredibly easy method of adjusting the club’s loft, lie, and weighting to fit your game’s needs – The “SureFit Tour Torque Wrench” Titleist offers allows for the average player to completely change all of these factors (plus completely switch shafts to boot) in under five minutes – is a feat that illustrates just how smart and good the people at Titleist are at what they do. The results speak for themselves, and they are saying “Good lord, how did I hit a golf ball that far with a fairway wood?”
Here’s the downside: it’s not, strictly speaking, the most accurate club I’ve ever hit. Off-center, sidespin misses scurry further away from the target than other clubs that don’t go nearly as far. Near as I can tell, though, this is simply a result of the ball going further – balls that stay in the air longer will have more time to go off-line than balls that don’t. Given this, I’m actually a bit surprised the club is as player-friendly as it is. All things considered, the tradeoff is more than worth it in my book
Just as shocking as the performance Titleist was able to tease out of this club with simple, unpretentious tweaking and customization options, I was amazed at how this high-performing club looks and feels so traditional. The clubhead is large and confidence-inspiring, as modern style demands, but the rounded, minimalist crown, the ordinary looking clubface, and the simple, dark-toned color palette has a very classic feel to it. It doesn’t feel retro or behind the times, but rather just a simple classic, stylish in any era (there’s something about this club that’s making me want to draw comparisons to the TV show Mad Men’s look and feel, but comparing a TV show to a golf club seems ludicrous. But I guess I just did it. I digress…). The ball feels springy coming off the clubface, with a satisfying sound that doesn’t remind you of an automobile accident. Personally, it’s everything I’d want in an ideally designed club that still gives me the best possible performance.
If it were only that I hit this club further than any other fairway metal I’d tried, I’d still love it and immediately want one for myself. But the attention to detail and design, the way Titleist has made this club not only perform the way you want it to, but also look, sound, and feel the way you want it to as well really elevates their work here above that of their competitors. As far as I’m concerned, this is the leader in the clubhouse for best metalwood of 2013. Run, don’t walk, to your nearest 2nd Swing location and try one out as soon as you can; it will be absolutely worth your time.