True Temper Proclaims – The Lightest Shaft Ever Introduced
Written By: Matt Saternus
A sub-40 gram driver shaft? Could it possibly be durable enough and can it actually perform?
There’s light, there’s superlight, and then there’s the new PXv 39 from Project X. As the name implies, the shaft weighs a mere 39 grams…and that’s before you cut it. Engineers at Project X were so hell-bent on creating the first shaft to break the 40-gram barrier that they didn’t even paint it. “If we painted it, the total weight would have gone up to about 42 grams, and we are committed to staying under 40 grams.” said Don Brown, Project X product development manager and designer.
Of course, lightweight is only great if it can actually perform. To find out how Project X’s wispy wonder stacks up, we put it through our shaft testing protocols alongside its slightly heavier brother, the PXv 52.
Specs, Price, and Manufacturer Notes
You already know that the Project X PXv 39 weighs 39 grams (regardless of flex), and you can probably guess that the PXv weighs 52 grams (in 6.0, it’s slightly lighter or heavier in other flexes).
The PXv 52 is available in flexes ranging from 5.5 (regular) to 7.0 (X-flex). The PXv 39 is available in 5.5 to 6.5.
The suggested retail price for both the PXv 39 and 52 is $350. The PXv can be found at most major golf retailers, but the PXv 39 is only available at True Temper Performance Fitting Center clubfitters.
Looks, Feel, and Miscellaneous
For those who recall the aesthetics of the original Project X PXv 39 graphite and Project X Black shafts, the PXv 39 and 52 will be quite familiar. The branding is straightforward, and there are wrap around flame/tribal graphics. One nice touch is that the graphics are toned down opposite to the Project X logo for those who prefer a clean, “logo down” look at address.
The feel of the PXv 52 was the biggest surprise of this test for me. After testing the original Project X graphite, I was expecting a “one piece” feel with minimal kick; I was completely wrong. The PXv 52 provides a very nice mid-kick similar to the Oban Kiyoshi White or Diamana B Series. By contrast, the PXv 39 has very minimal kick and is much more similar to the original Project X graphite shafts.
One final note of interest: these shafts, particularly the PXv 39, are much thinner than standard weight shafts. While this might seem obvious, they need to be thinner to be lighter weight, it was surprising to put them side by side with other shafts and see just how much thinner they are. See for yourself in the pics.
For the Performance testing, I hit each of the shafts in a Callaway RAZR Fit Extreme 10.5 head on a FlightScope X2 launch monitor. I hit 20 “good” shots with each shaft, changing frequently so that fatigue was not an issue, nor did I get grooved with one shaft to the detriment of fairness. All shafts were gripped with PURE Grips.
Testing was done at Golf Nation in Palatine, IL, one of the best indoor golf facilities in the country.
*NOTE: Testing has moved back inside for the winter, and our FlightScope seems to be producing somewhat different numbers indoors compared to outdoors. To greater or lesser extents, ball speed, club head speed, and spin are all coming in lower than they did outdoors, hence the carry number is smaller. That said, it’s still an apples-to-apples comparison, so no attempt has been made to “normalize” the numbers: we’re publishing the numbers straight off the FlightScope, as always.
Let’s go ahead and deal with the big questions right away: how much did the 39 gram shaft spin and how accurate was it? On the question of spin, it was quite good. While not the lowest spinning shaft I’ve tested, it was respectable, especially in the 6.5. On the question of accuracy, please don’t be fooled by the big Offline number for the 6.0: it is an excellent illustration of why you need to consider both Offline and Dispersion. If you ignore the one straight ball I hit, the Dispersion for the PXv 39 6.0 is actually quite good. I couldn’t square the face to save my life, but the push I was hitting was extremely consistent. I chalk all of that up to being a lot lighter, and a little softer, than the shafts I normally play.
Moving to the PXv 52, I hit the 6.0 very well. The PXv 52 is a nice lightweight option that keeps the spin in check.
With regard to all of the shafts tested, the lightweight did help me boost my swing speed a bit (1-2 MPH), but the ball speed was not markedly higher than it has been with other shafts. This can be attributed to more off-center contact because I am not used to playing shafts this light.
While there is no shortage of lightweight shafts on the market, the PXv 39 currently stands as the high (or should it be low?) water mark of what shaft manufacturers can do with new materials and construction.
The PXv shafts add significantly more variety to Project X’s line of graphite shafts. Now players looking for the trademark accuracy of Project X can find it in a wider variety of weights.
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