ClubTest Proving Ground: Is a HiToe wedge the best option for your short game?
Welcome to GOLF.com’s ClubTest Proving Ground, where Managing Equipment Editor Jonathan Wall and Senior Equipment Editor Ryan Barath put the latest designs and groundbreaking technology in the equipment space to the test on the range and the course.
When it comes to the short game there are a lot of wedge options in the market, and just like with a driver or any other club in the bag, it’s important to pick the right one.
Although I’ve made the point that a lob wedge might not be the best choice for everyone, it is still a great specialty club for around the green, and that’s what this test is all about.
For this installment of Club Test Proving Ground, I put the TaylorMade HiToe3 up against the Milled Grind 3 in a head-to-head short game test to see how the two wedges stack up. Instead of a traditional comparison test packed with data, this one is all about the qualitative results I saw on the course and in the short game area.
I took both wedges to the course over the period of a couple of weeks and made notes during this time. After on-course use, I spent time around a short game practice area putting the wedges through their paces in a variety of scenarios
I bend the MG3 weak to 60° to make them equal loft and to give both wedges the same amount of bounce based on TaylorMade’s measurements.
Short grass and full swings
When it comes to making full swings with a standard square club face I found both wedges to be just about equal when it comes to performance and feel.
From a looks perspective, the one thing I will say about the HiToe3 is that because of the high-toe profile it looks more upright compared to a standard shape wedge. I bent both wedges to the same 61° lie angle and double-checked the HT3 thinking I didn’t bend it enough but came to the realization it was just a looks thing.
(This was only something I noticed on square-faced shots, and since a lob wedge is often played with an open face it’s in no way a deal breaker)
Winner – A draw
From the rough – Inside 25 yards
This is where the HT3 began to separate itself from the MG3 thanks to the profile from address and the sole design.
Although it is an obvious point, the larger face provided a lot of confidence when hitting shots from the rough because of the vertical forgiveness. To be honest, they both work really well, but with the HiToe I felt I could be more aggressive and accelerate through the impact zone. Deceleration is a short game killer so the edge goes to the HiToe.
The slightly wider sole design of HT3 also helped the club get through the rough easier without ever feeling like I would stick it in the ground. Even when you open up the face the hosel-to-sole transitions of the HT3 does a great job of reducing contact through the grass to get the club moving efficiently.
Winner – HiToe3
I need to make this very clear — the HiToe3 60° is an absolute bunker killer!
It must be said that the MG3 is NOT a bad wedge (in fact, it’s spectacular), but if you are a regular golfer like me looking for any edge on the course, this could be your next secret weapon.
Just like out of the rough, the HiToe3 shape and sole gives you the confidence to open the face and fire the club into the sand to propel the ball. I found it particularly useful on the course and in testing when I encountered a fried egg and needed every part of that larger club face to get the ball moving.
Winner – HT3
If you are a traditionalist looking to maximize your options, the MG3 is likely going to be your wedge of choice — but if you are looking to add a little extra to your short game the HiToe3 is a runaway winner.
With the full face grooves and larger shape from address, the HiToe3 not only boosts your confidence when standing over the ball but provides a tangible benefit for when your misses are more around the face. If you’re in the market for a new lob wedge, be sure to give the HiToe3 a shot.
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TAYLORMADE MILLED GRIND 3 WEDGE
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