Cobra’s Baffler Rail Technology can change your fortunes from the deck
Cobra King F7 Fairway and Hybrids
Cobra’s entire 2017 club lineup has been met with significant praise, but its new F7 fairway woods and hybrids might be garnering the most attention given their unique design.
And in many ways, Cobra can thank PGA Tour standout Rickie Fowler for that attention.
Fowler, who’s the biggest star in Cobra’s stable of touring professionals, had approached Cobra engineers about creating a fairway wood that would allow him to be more aggressive through impact without having to worry about inconsistent turf interaction.
As a result, in 2016, Cobra revisited one of its design features from the past, which led to the release of the KING F6 Baffler Fairway, which featured rails along the sole.
“Last year, we brought back an old Cobra technology called Baffler technology,” said Tom Olsavsky, Cobra Vice President of Research & Development. “It’s a great way to help players with a lot of different shots.”
The F6 Baffler proved to be a huge success and prompted Cobra to do further testing with what it is now calling Baffler Rail Technology to see how it could further help golfers.
What did Cobra discover in its research?
“We found in many cases the reason players don’t hit fairway woods well is they try to lift the ball and one of the reasons they do this is sometimes they hit the ground behind the ball,” Olsavsky said. “The rails actually help the club continue to maintain its speed through the shot, but it’s also huge in terms of playability from all kinds of different lies, so this year we brought Baffler Technology into the full line of F7 fairways and hybrids for every player out there.”
What many recreational golfers might not realize is that the best players in the world hit down on the ball fairly significantly with their fairway woods and hybrids, on average between 3 and 3 1/2 degrees based on PGA Tour data.
That makes turf interaction crucial with fairways and hybrids, and the rails on the F7 models not only improve turf interaction by maintaining speed through impact but they also help keep the clubface square through impact, which results in straighter shots.
Also unique when it comes to the rails is their progressive design. In both the F7 fairway woods and hybrids, the rails are steeper in more lofted models and shallower in less lofted models to accommodate changing angles of attack to produce optimal results.
In the F7 fairways, players also have moveable weight technology available to help them achieve their preferred trajectory and spin. By positioning the heavier of two weights in a back weight port, higher launch conditions are achieved, while moving the heavier weight to the forward port will result in lower spin rates and a flatter ball flight.
The F7 hybrids, meanwhile, feature a fixed weight in the back of the clubhead, which has been designed to deliver high launch and optimal stability at impact.
Both the hybrids and fairways also feature a thin, high-strength steel clubface that ensures fast ball speeds from all impact points, as well as Cobra’s MyFly8 adjustable loft system, which allows for eight different loft and lie combinations, including three draw settings, without changing face angle at address.
The F7 fairway woods come in three different models, the 3-4 (170cc clubhead), the 5-6 (150cc clubhead), and the 7-8 (147cc clubhead). The 3-4 FWY can be adjusted for lofts between 13 and 16 degrees, the 5-6 FWY can be adjusted for lofts between 17 and 20 degrees, and the 7-8 FWY can be adjusted for lofts between 21 and 24 degrees.
The stock shaft for the F7 fairways, which are offered in black, grey, or blue, is the Fujikura Pro 65, while the stock grip is the Cobra Lamkin REL.
As for the hybrids, they are offered in 2-3 (16-19 degrees), 3-4 (19-22 degrees), and 4-5 (22-25 degrees) models. They also feature the Fujikura Pro 75 hybrid shaft and Cobra Lamkin Rel grips, as well as a black finish.
King F6 Fairways and Hybrids
Cobra King F6 Fairway
TGW Customer Feedback on the Cobra King F6 Hybrid
High launch, low spin, and incredible forgiveness are performance benefits that have been built into Cobra’s entire F6 line, including the fairway woods and hybrids. Two fairway wood options, the F6 and the F6 Baffler, are available, with each serving different functions from a playability standpoint. Most notably, Rails Technology utilized on the Baffler enables better turf interaction and makes it a great option for players with more aggressive swings or steeper angles of attack. The F6, meanwhile, will work better for the player who sweeps the ball off the turf. That said, the F6 and F6 Baffler have similarities as well, including moveable front and back weights that allow players to better control their ball flight, launch angle, and spin rate for maximum performance. Both fairway wood models also come stock with the Matrix Red Tie, which would best be categorized as a mid-launch, mid-spin shaft.
In terms of the different models available, adjustability equates to versatility in this product line. The F6 is available in 3-4, 5-6, and 7-8 models, which allows players to create lofts ranging from 13 all the way to 24 degrees depending on their choice(s). Each model also features three draw bias settings. The F6 Baffler, however, is only available in a 4-5 model, which can be adjusted from 16 to 19 degrees, and it also has three settings to create a draw bias. As for the F6 hybrids, from a performance standpoint, players can expect similar results as the F6 fairways, with increased forgiveness, higher launch angles, and lower spin rates highlighting the list of playability attributes. But there are some slight differences in terms of technology. There are no moveable weights in the F6 hybrids. However, a 13-gram weight is positioned low and deep in the clubhead to create the low CG and high MOI that the F6 line is known for. In terms of available options, the F6 hybrids are offered in a 2-3, 3-4, and 4-5 model, which, with three degrees of adjustability, can span lofts of 16 to 25 degrees depending on setup. And like the F6 fairway woods, the hybrids also feature the Matrix Red Tie, in a heavier weight, as a stock shaft
King LTD Fairways
Cobra King LTD Fairway
TGW Customer Feedback on the Cobra King LTD Fairway
When it comes to fairway woods, King LTD is a revelation in its class. Featuring technology that Cobra had never released to the public before, LTD fairway woods can claim a zero CG, which means the center of gravity is at the neutral axis. This is the lowest CG that Cobra has used in a fairway wood, and the result is an impressive combination of distance and forgiveness. A Carbon Fiber crown that weighs only 11 grams enabled the CG to be moved as low as it is in the LTD fairway woods. And with the weight saved in constructing the crown, engineers were able to place a 16-gram Spaceport in the sole of the club, which makes the low, deep CG and extremely high inertia possible. LTD fairway woods also feature Speed Channels that support the perimeter of the clubface, allowing it to be thinner and more flexible for higher ball speeds from impact points across the face. Additionally, MyFly loft technology allows for three degrees of adjustability in terms of loft and eight different settings in total that help players maximize performance. There are two options available in the LTD fairway woods, a 3-4 and a 4-5 model. The 3-4 can be adjusted for lofts between 13 and 16 degrees, with three draw settings also available, while the 4-5 model can be played between 16 and 19 degrees. It has three draw bias settings as well. The stock shaft in the LTD fairway woods is the highly popular Aldila Rogue Black, but other premium shafts are available at no upcharge as well.