It’s not just 917 drivers that are creating plenty of buzz for Titleist, as 917 fairway woods also have been met with high praise by the players who have had the chance to hit them.

Most notable among that group might be the touring professionals on Titleist’s staff, who almost universally adopted 917 fairway woods without hesitation as soon as they became available.

In addition to delivering improved playability in terms of spin rates, launch angles, and forgiveness, 917 fairway woods also feature more customization options than any previous Titleist fairway wood.

That combination is likely to land 917 fairways in the bags of a wide array of players and why we wanted to give you a more detailed look at what you need to know about these clubs and what you can expect from a performance standpoint.

One thing that Titleist fans will notice right away about the 917 fairway woods is a slight name change.

For its most recent releases, Titleist used F and Fd to differentiate between its two fairway models. The two 917 fairway options, however, have been renamed F2 and F3 to better align with the company’s driver nomenclature.

As one might expect based on the new names, from a playability standpoint, the F2 is more similar to the D2 driver, while the F3 shares more common performance attributes with the D3.

“When you look at the F2, you’ve got a little bit wider of a sole,” said Josh Talge, Vice President of Marketing for Titleist Golf Clubs. “You’re looking at a 179cc head; it’s got a profile that’s a little bit wider. We wanted to make sure it looks forgiving. We want to give you that confidence as you set up to that ball.”

In terms of the smaller F3, Talge added, “this is a player who’s probably going to hit it off the tee 50 percent of the time, so we gave them a deeper face. We gave them the ability to really kind of work the ball a little bit more than (with) the F2. It’s going to be a couple of hundred RPM less spin.”

In terms of loft options, the F3 is only available as a 3-wood or strong 3-wood in lofts of 13.5 and 15 degrees, while the F2 is available in lofts of 13.5, 15, 16.5, 18, and 21 degrees, with the 13.5- and 21-degree only offered in right-handed versions. Ladies models of the F2 are also offered at a shorter stock length and with lighter stock shaft options.

Also of note, as is the case with the 917 drivers, a new color is being utilized in the 917 fairway woods, as a dark grey finish has replaced the glossy black finish that was utilized in the 915, 913, and 910 series fairways.

Titleist 917 F3 SureFitSurfit CG

From a technological standpoint, there are a number of similarities between the 917 drivers and fairways woods, and that starts with the innovative SureFit CG, which gives players the ability to alter center of gravity to create their ideal flight conditions.

“When you combine SureFit CG along with our SureFit Hosel system, we’re able to really help you get that ball on the line that you want,” Talge said. “We can take misses out of play for you, and really deliver the type of performance that you’re going to enjoy.”

In terms of how SureFit CG works, what could best be described as a weight cartridge is utilized in a chamber that runs through the clubhead almost parallel to the clubface. Players can utilize a neutral weight in the chamber or they have the option of using a weight that will create either a draw or fade bias, which can manipulate curvature by roughly six yards, according to Titleist.

In the 917 driver, the standard SureFit CG weight is 12 grams, but a 14-gram weight is utilized in the fairway woods. For those who want to create a fade bias, they can utilize the heavier end of the 14-gram weight in a forward, toe position, while utilizing the heavier end of the weight in a back, heel position will adversely create a draw bias.

While the SureFit CG will have some effect on spin rates, where it has its biggest influence is in terms of helping players shape shots more easily or eliminate a miss.

Titleist also offers other weight options to help players adjust swing weight as necessary, but 14-gram weights in neutral and fade/draw options are what come standard with the 917 fairway woods.

Active Recoil Channel 2.0 and Variable Thickness Face Insert

Also similar to the 917 drivers from a technological standpoint is the use of Titleist’s highly successful Active Recoil Channel.

The new Recoil channel being utilized in the 917 fairway woods has been reshaped slightly and utilizes an elastomer insert that reduces spin and creates faster ball speeds.

Working in unison with the Recoil Channel is a Variable Thickness Face Insert, which makes higher ball speeds on mishits possible, increasing the overall forgiveness of the 917 fairway woods.

The 917 fairway woods also feature lower centers of gravity, which helps improve launch angles and provides increased stability at impact for better performance on mis-hits.

All told, Titleist has seen tremendous improvement in performance compared to the 915 fairway woods during fitting sessions with players of all ability levels.

“We’ve seen ball speed increases at a minimum of one mile an hour; we’ve seen as high as five. You’re going to see more ball speed come off the face,” said Glenn Mahler, Fitting Supervisor at the Titleist Performance Institute. “We’re seeing launches go up because that center of gravity has gone down. The spins, again, are reduced by about 200 RPM, (and) the moment of inertia’s increased.”

Titleist 917 fairway SureFit Hosel

Also back in play with the 917 fairway woods is Titleist’s SureFit Hosel system, which has been highly effective for Titleist by allowing golfers to independently adjust loft and lie. And that’s an important part of the equation when it comes to achieving preferred ball flight and trajectory.

To elaborate, with some adjustable hosels, loft changes that are made automatically create lie angle changes, and that will influence ball flight. More specifically, flatter lie angles will most typically create fade bias and upright lie angles will create draw bias.

Working in unison with the Recoil Channel is a Variable Thickness Face Insert, which makes higher ball speeds on mishits possible, increasing the overall forgiveness of the 917 fairway woods.

That said, being able to adjust loft and lie independently is a huge advantage. For example, if you’re someone who fights a hook, you don’t want to be unable to make a needed loft change to your fairway wood because it creates a more upright lie angle. In a situation like that, your customization options are actually limited based on your needs.

That makes Titleist’s SureFit hosel a huge benefit in helping players get the exact flight conditions they want, both in terms of curvature and trajectory.

Shaft Options

One of the most important components when it comes to fairway wood performance, or any club for that matter, is having the right shaft, and Titleist is giving its players plenty of great stock options in the 917 fairway woods.

In fact, the fairway wood options mirror what’s being offered in 917 drivers, albeit in heavier weights, which is common as it relates to the differences between driver and fairway shafts.

Titleist players will immediately recognize the inclusion of the popular Mitsubishi Diamana line, a long-time favorite on Tour and a staple in the Titleist metalwood lineup for years.

Three Diamana options exist in the White, Blue, and Red Limited Plus models, all of which have different profiles to fit a wide range of players.

The White is designed to create low launch and low spin, which is great for players with higher swing speeds, and it’s the heaviest of the three Diamana models at 83 or 86 grams depending on flex.

The Blue, known for its smooth feel, is more of a mid-launch, mid-spin shaft and weighs 67 or 71 grams depending on flex. It’s a great option for players with more modest swing speeds who are looking to maximize their carry distances.

The Red, meanwhile, also has a smooth feel, as well as an active kick at impact. It is offered as a stock option in the F2 models for men and women and is the lightest of the three Diamana choices, checking in at a range of 50-56 degrees. It will produce high launch conditions and work well for players with slower swing speeds.

A couple of new options are also part of the 917 fairway shaft lineup: the Fujikura Speeder Pro TS 84 and the Aldila Rogue Max 75. Both are low-to-mid launching shafts, with the Speeder, at a weight in the high 80s, weighing 13 grams more than the Max..

“We pick what we refer to as ‘real-deal’ shafts,” Talge said. “These are one hundred percent aftermarket shafts. We partner directly with these vendors to make sure that’s what you’re getting, the same shaft you would get if you went somewhere else.”

Titleist also offers other custom options as well for players in need of a different fit.