Technical Tips

April, 2008

Tech Tip - Is Nano Worth the Price?


Did you realize that not one Japanese shaft company has embraced ‘Nano Technology’ in their latest shaft designs? Of course, this includes UST, whose parent company Mamiya-OP is an industry leader in new material technologies — evidenced by the phenomenal success of its AXIV shaft series which features a proprietary 4-axis carbon fiber weave material. Currently, Japan is the undisputed leader in graphite technology which includes prepreg, the raw material needed to create high-performance golf shafts, but yet nano technology remains absent from today’s shaft offerings.

So, let’s look at the facts. The cost of carbon nanotubes is currently about $300 per gram. That is 1 gram = $300. So, when you consider that a typical nano shaft weighs 61 to 80 grams, the math.

The touted benefits of nano technology are that lighter and stronger shafts can be produced. With the weight of nano shafts currently on the market between 61 grams and 85 grams, they certainly aren’t taking advantage of the ‘lighter’ benefits and most of today’s standard-weight graphite shafts are already plenty strong. (UST has produced more than 40 million shafts in the past 15 years, and durability has never been an issue.)

So, what are the benefits of nanotubes in graphite shaft designs? That question will be answered when you see the first 28-gram (one ounce) wood shaft hit the market. The technology is available today and is very real. But is the market really ready for a super lightweight shaft that costs $20,000 and up?


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