View large image
|Hireko Golf's Power Play Caiman irons are a solid alternative to higher-priced, higher-profile game improvement irons. (Courtesy of Hireko Golf)|
Hireko Golf has been offering components and assembled golf clubs since 1980. Hireko's quality and affordable prices have built a strong following in Asia and North America. Over the past several years, Hireko has added well-known brands like Acer and Pal Joey, and recently added the highly-respected Dynacraft line to their stable.
Another one of Hireko Golf's brand names is Power Play, and the new Power Play Caiman irons offer a passel of game-improvement features for a mere pittance.
I recently tested the Caimans against my current favorite big-name, mid-handicap irons, the Cleveland CG Gold, on the excellent practice range at Stone Creek Golf Club in Urbana, Illinois.
The game-improvement features of the Caimans are a bit more pronounced than in the Cleveland sticks, with a thicker top-line and slightly larger offset. However, after the first couple of swings - which produced lovely shots the likes of which I can rarely hit on an actual course - these features completely faded from view.
During the several hours of testing, in which I was trying to eradicate the chronic hook that bedevils my game, I began to hit too strong of a fade with the Cleveland irons. The Caimans, with their anti-slice design features, produced shots with a straight to soft-fade ball-flight without changing my swing at all.
Importantly, the height and distance of shots didn't change a bit when switching back and forth between iron sets. And if anything, the Caimans were a tad more forgiving on off-center contact.
New irons might be a tough sell in this economy, but the Caimans are worth a serious look as alternatives to higher-priced, higher-profile sets. The clubs can be ordered directly from Hireko's website already assembled with Apollo shaft and Golf Pride grip for $30 each - that's 3-PW for under $250.
For more information, visit www.hirekogolf.com.
June 22, 2009
Kiel Christianson has lived, worked, traveled and golfed extensively on three continents. As senior writer and equipment editor for WorldGolf.com, he has reviewed courses, resorts, and golf academies from California to Ireland, including his home course, Lake of the Woods G.C. in Mahomet, Ill. Read his golf blog here and follow him on Twitter @GolfWriterKiel.
Although the new Air Force One AFX Pro Series Irons are not forged, the soft-cast steel provides adequate feel, along with workability appropriate for the "pro" designation. The lofts run a bit lower than standard, which produces a penetrating but lower-than-average ball flight.
... full article »