Forged vs Cast Wedges – What’s Better For Your Game?

The wedges are the business end of your bag, they are, along with your putter, your scoring clubs. Many golfers use the wedges that come with their iron sets and then add one or two, some even carry up to four wedges.

Forged wedges are hand crafted from a single piece of metal that is heated to extreme temperature and then shaped by hand and using a grinder. It allows for a lower centre of gravity and improved feel. Cast Irons are made by pouring the hot metal into a cast and is a relatively new way of doing things. Casted Wedges are great for improvers with enhanced forgiveness and larger sweet spots.

According to Dave Pelz, the shortgame wizard, you should carry as many wedges as you can if you want to be a top golfer. Today on the blog we are looking into how wedges are made and which kind is best for your game.

Why Are Wedges So Important To Your Game?

If you think about it, more than half of the shots you play will be within 100 yards of the hole. A lot of those shots will be putts but the rest of them will be wedges. Getting good with your wedges can help you make more birdies and also protect your score when things aren’t going so well.

These are your attacking clubs. Being confident with the wedges will transform your game and if you add good putting skills to that, you are on track to become a very good golfer.

Overview: Forged Vs Cast Wedges

How Wedges Should I Have In my Bag

We’re talking here about the manufacturing process for making wedges. These are two of the three options, the other being milled wedges but we will save that for another day. Forged wedges are shaped by hand, the metal is hammered into shape and finished using a grinder. They tend to have performance benefits.

Cast wedges, on the other hand, use molten metal that is poured into a cast, hence the name. This is allowed to set and voila, you have a wedge. This makes them easier to make on a mass scale and gives other benefits that we will come onto.

The Manufacturing History

When you think of forged metal, you may think of a blacksmith sweating over a red hot piece of metal. Well, that’s how forged wedges are made and this is how clubs were always made, right up until the 1990s.

Cast irons and wedges were brought to the market in the 90s when Ping started selling cavity backed irons and wedges. This was a game changer for the game improvement-type clubs and gave a whole new level of forgiveness to many golfers.

Benefits Of Forged Wedges

The forging process for manufacturing wedges creates clubs that have a lower centre of gravity and most of the weight is toward the bottom of the face. This helps to impart spin on the ball and gives the golfer more control. It also gives them a generally softer feel at impact.

Many attribute these benefits to the forging process itself. However, this is more to do with the centre of gravity. If a cast club had the same weighting characteristics then it would feel similar, the Ping iBlade is an example of this.

Benefits of Cast Wedges

Using this method of manufacturing gives the club maker more options in terms of shapes and materials that can be used. This means that you can make clubs lighter, with larger sweetspots and with revolutionary materials to help performance.

In some ways, it is also easier to move the centre of gravity around with cast wedges. Try each type of wedge out and see which you prefer, try to go in with an open mind and give them an equal chance, you may surprise yourself.

How Do You Know Which Is Better For Your Game?

The fact of the matter is that most golfers will find benefits to both types of club. Using data and your own experience, you can make an informed decision as to what is best for you.

As I always say, and you are probably bored of it, a launch monitor and a club fitting technician can help you here.

By objectively trying both types of wedge you can learn which is more consistent for you. Consistency is key here as repeatability is essential for good scoring. The more you can consistently hit targets the better a golfer you will be.

Top 3 Forged Wedges

  1. Vega Wedges

The Classic Vega wedges are some of the finest in the game and made with such wonderful attention to detail. These wedges are made from the best materials available and, as a result, are some of the best feeling and performing wedges you will ever play. These are for golfers looking to spend a little bit of money.

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  1. Cleveland RTX4 Wedges

Roger Cleveland is one of the pioneers of the modern wedge so it is no wonder that the clubs that bear his name are among the best. The Cleveland RTX4 wedges are forged from premium metals and even just casting your eye over them can see how carefully they’re made. These clubs are beautiful and your game will benefit from them.

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  1. Ping Glide Wedges

Ping are one of the most forward-thinking and innovative brands in golf. The Glide wedges in their line-up are beautiful and modern in equal measures. They may be the best looking wedge on the market today and they have the performance to match!

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Top 3 Cast And Milled Wedges

  1. Titleist Vokey SM8 Series

For some time now, Bob Vokey, the master craftsman and the team at Titleist have been refining their offering of wedges. The Titleist Vokey SM8 series is the latest line-up and it is incredible, many will be surprised to hear that they are not forged. With 6 different grind options and 3 different finishes, there is a club that will delight every golfer.

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  1. PXG Milled Wedges

The team at PXG are known for their no expense spared approach to developing clubs. Many have heard of milled putters but now you can get milled wedges from PXG. Made using a single piece of metal and precision-milled into these exceptional wedges, these are clubs that feel and look incredible.

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  1. Callaway MD5 Jaws

Callaway have really caused a stir in the market with their Mack Daddy wedges and the MD5 Jaws models are the best yet. These clubs have been developed with one thing in mind, spin control.

The clubs have a classic look, thanks to Roger Cleveland, with a modern twist. They are fantastic clubs, great value and Phil Mickelson plays them so what other endorsement do you need?

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What’s Best For The Average Golfer?

I think this one comes down to your budget. The club that is best for the average golfer is the club that they can comfortably afford and that works best for them. Find your budget and then try forged, cast and milled wedges.

Only you know what feels good in your hands and you can only figure this out by trying clubs. Ask to try your friends’ wedges or go to a driving range and try demo clubs. You will find what you like and dislike very quickly.

What do the tour pros use?

Pros can use any clubs they want within whatever contract they are in. They can tinker with set-ups and try clubs that aren’t even on the market, they have it really good. Let’s have a look at what clubs two of the biggest names in the game have in their bag.

Tiger Woods

The best player of our generation has clubs that most of us would love to try. That’s why TaylorMade have a line of wedges based on the clubs that Tiger plays. At the moment he is carrying TaylorMade MG2 TW/MT Grind (56-12, 60-11) along with the pitching wedge from his P7TW blades.

One thing that club technicians say Tiger is famous for is how little he tinkers with clubs. He may try some grind modifications in between tournaments, he always tries new clubs at his home, but he never changes anything on tournament week. These wedges are incredible and you can get them in many golf shops.

Bryson DeChambeau

The man who loves to use words you can’t say so that he sounds super-smart also uses many golf clubs that you’ve never heard of. He has revolutionised our game this year with his new brawny approach and he has caused quite a stir in the process. This is a guy who doesn’t play by the rules so it is always interesting to see what clubs he plays.

On the wedge-front, DeChambeau plays clubs made by a brand called Artisan Golf. These are hand-made and finished in Texas, they look incredible and are all about attention to details, something that Bryson prides himself in.

Overall Conclusion

Wedges are among the most underrated clubs in your bag, spending time finding the right ones for your game can be a great investment in time and money. These are clubs that you want to feel unstoppable with when you put them in your hands so that you can attack flags.

Make sure that you spend a lot of your practice time working on your wedge game, this, along with putting practice, will really help push your game to new levels. Try new clubs and get a custom fitting, you will find yourself something that works perfectly in no time!