The new Tight Lies fairway woods from Adams Golf contains the originals' low-profile face along with new-generation slanted slots cut into the crown and sole.
The 2014 PGA Merchandise Show, held Jan. 22-24 in Orlando, showcased thousands of new products great and small from hundreds of vendors. After walking the 10 miles of aisles in the Orange County Convention Center for two days, I've come up with a list of 10 products that caught my eye, and I'm rolling them out over a 10-day period. Here is the eighth one:
The second half of 2013 saw the return of several venerable brands of golf equipment, few more eagerly welcomed among club aficionados than Tight Lies fairway woods from Adams Golf. The original Tight Lies, which debuted in the mid-1990s, were revolutionary for their ''upside down'' head shape that made getting the ball up in the air easy.
Since then, of course, drivers have gotten significantly larger, and fairway woods have followed suit – many of today's fairway woods have heads as large as the drivers of a generation ago. And while they're great for hitting off the tee or good lies, their larger heads make them more challenging to hit well from the rough or a waste bunker or anywhere else that has less-than-perfect turf conditions.
This development created a perfect opening for the reintroduction of Tight Lies fairway clubs and now, almost two decades after the originals debuted, Adams has reinvented its most famous and successful stick. The new Tight Lies fairway clubs feature a modernized version of the ''upside down'' head shape, and boast a significant improvement in generating ball speed and, therefore, distance, while maintaining the low profile and shallow face that made the original models so distinctive.
The heads of Tight Lies clubs were always smaller and lighter than most of their competitors, and Adams' engineers have thinned away even more weight in the new versions by carving slots in both the crowns and soles. Some other recent Adams clubs also contain this Cut Sole technology, but the slots in the new Tight Lies heads are slanted back toward the face to enhance the spring off the face on both pure and mishit shots.
In fact, Adams says, the new Tight Lies clubs provide as much as 10 percent more firepower off the face than recent clubs. That means that the new clubs can maintain their low and deep center of gravity – which helps get the ball up in the air – without losing much oomph. They also boast the tri-sole design from the original to reduce the amount of turf interaction during the shot.
The standard Tight Lies fairway club comes in 14-, 16-, 19- and 22-degree versions (essentially 3-woods to 7-woods), while the Tour model comes in 14.5- and 18-degree editions. The standard models carry a suggested retail price of $199.99, while the Tour clubs go for $229.99. They're available at select retailers and at www.Adamsgolf.com.