When talking wedges the words Titleist and Vokey are synonymous with each other. The Vokey brand carries a considerable level of equity thanks to years of painstaking research and development into what is often considered a 'boring' category for designers. Bob Vokey certainly doesn't see it that way, owning the category with Roger Cleveland since the late 1990s.
Two of the leading technologies in Titleist Vokey wedges are grind and progressive centre of gravity. The latter refers to how the CG moves down the face as loft increases. In the lower lofts, where golfers will tend to be hitting fuller shots, the CG is higher in the face to control trajectory and distance. In the higher lofts, it is lower in the head to help get the ball in the air quickly for touch and feel shots around the green.
In their infancy, the Vokey mission was a simple one. Listen to players describe their wedge shots, and craft a wedge grind that performed exactly how the player wanted. Grind in wedges is all to do with the sole and how it sits on the ground. Grind is a highly complicated area, and if you want to know more, then you can read and watch our 'Weducation' video here. We look specifically at the Vokey SM7 wedge and go through each grind.
The finish of a Titleist wedge is mostly down to personal preference. Raw finished will spin a little more thanks to the additional abrasion on the face which will build up over time. Tour Chrome or Satin is the preferred choice of most professionals and amateurs alike. The darker finishes will help reduce glare on super sunny days.
Vokey Design wedges have been the overwhelming favourite among Tour players since 2004, with close to 50 per cent of all sand, lob, and approach wedges in play each week. This level of use by the best players in the world gives the engineers at Titleist what Bob has described as the "best R&D facility in the world" - the practice greens, and bunkers of the PGA Tour. His philosophy has resonated in the amateur golf marketplace where Vokey Design wedges are best-sellers with golfers of all skill levels.
Outside the Vokey family, second-hand Titleist wedges are available as extensions of irons sets. Simpler to understand these wedge will suit beginners as they'll perform as your irons do. The gapping between each club will also be consistent. In recent years Titleist has introduced the W2 wedge into their iron line up. More commonly known as an 'A' or 'G' wedge and has come about as stronger lofts in irons are leaving gaps too significant to fill with a traditional wedge set up. The loft on all iron set wedges will vary between models so double-check the loft you're buying.