Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke fairway woods: 3 things you need to know
Realizing not everyone has the time to consume endless content on club launch day, we’re trying something different and offering a fresh version of our detailed tech write-ups that hits the high points. Here’s what you need to know about Callaway’s Paradym Ai Smoke fairway woods coming to retail on Jan. 26.
The same approach Callaway applied to create the Ai Smart Face architecture on the Paradym Ai Smoke drivers was used to shape the “swing code” on each Paradym Ai Smoke fairway wood (available Jan. 26).
Categorizing real players’ swings made it possible to create distinct segmentation across all four models, especially when it came to impact location.
While the path and attack angle remained somewhat similar, Callaway’s supercomputer noticed that golfers using the low-spin Ai Smoke Triple Diamond ($349.99) had a most centered impact location when compared to the Ai Smoke Max’s ($349.99) shot concentration in the low heel and high toe. The dispersion was even wider across the low heel and toe on the draw-bias Ai Smoke Max D ($349.99) and lightweight Ai Smoke Max Fast ($349.99).
Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Max Custom Fairway Wood
These learnings allowed the supercomputer to design specific faces for each model and loft that not only mitigate distance loss on off-center strikes but fine-tune launch and spin characteristics as well. It’s arguably the smartest face in golf.
Last year’s Paradym saw designers get closer to the 360-degree composite chassis found on the driver with a carbon sole piece that afforded engineers with an abundance of discretionary weight. If there was one knock on the design, it was the two steel bars that sat just behind the carbon sole section.
“We were pleased with the ability to bring in a composite sole with Paradym, but we still had to reinforce it with steel to ensure our quality and durability,” said Brian Williams, Callaway’s VP of R&D. “We tasked our composite engineering team to get us to the place we were with the driver.”
Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Max Fast Custom Fairway Wood
Over the last 18 months, Williams’ team conducted research to find a way to remove the bars and gain a performance advantage. At the same time, they also needed to know it could withstand repeated blows from golfers without failing. And by “failing” that would be slamming the club into the ground after a bad shot. Yes, we’re being serious.
Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Max D Custom Fairway Wood
The good news: Callaway managed to find a sole design that allows the composite section to be applied without reinforced steel bars. The design tweak netted 24 grams of discretionary weight that was applied equally to the front (12 grams) and back (12 grams) to improve MOI and launch characteristics.
Even better news: Callaway confirmed they conducted a simulation where golfers repeatedly slammed the head into the turf to ensure the composite wouldn’t break or come loose from the sole. A tee was also placed on the ground and “thumped” into the turf by the composite sole to verify it stayed in place.
In both tests, the sole design passed with flying colors.
“We’re trying to push the materials to their limit,” said Williams. “You have to make sure they’re durable as well.”
Better players will notice the sole on the Ai Smoke Triple Diamond isn’t carbon composite. It actually remained steel for a good reason. Golfers who fit into the Triple Diamond don’t necessarily need the heel-toe forgiveness found in the Max, Max D and Max Fast, so engineers chose to go with a heavier steel sole piece to keep the center of gravity low for performance reasons.
“The head is smaller so there’s not a significant weight savings due to the head size,” Williams said. “We know this player type has higher head speeds and durability was important. Having steel on the sole keeps the CG really low for a more meaningful performance benefit. With the others, we’re trying to get perimeter weighting for more stability.”
Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke TD Custom Fairway Wood
For those with more speed in the tank and a relatively tight impact pattern, the Triple Diamond could turn out to be an ideal option near the top of the set.
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