This year Harrison celebrates our 21th anniversary in the golf business. Many of our clients have asked me how I started the business. It was started with nothing other than a passion to run my own business. My father started his own business as a young man. Since I was a kid, I had dreamt about one day running my own business. During college, I picked up the game of golf and has been fascinated by it ever since. I dated my future wife on the course. You can tell that I was not totally focused on the game. We have had some of our most joyful time on the course, mostly making fun of each other’s bad shots.
Thanks to the support of our clients. Over the last two decades, we have carved out a niche as one of the principle players in the component shaft market. At one time, we served more than 2000 active clients over the U.S. and Canada. As the prominence of shaft rises in golfer’s psyche, consumers increasingly demand to use only shafts of reputable origin in place of generic shafts that were in the clubs of yesterday. Many of our clients have done brisk business replacing generic shafts in name brand clubs with our shafts.
Generic OEM shaft makers were desperately seeking ways to position themselves as the preferred shafts in the golf industry. This desire gave rise to the co-branding practice that is widely observed today. Nearly every name brand driver today come pre-installed with a co-branded OEM shafts. As the name brands promote co-branded shafts on Tour, it gives OEM shaft companies the perfect opportunity to ride on their coat tail.
As an independent component shaft company, we can only rely upon ourselves. There is no coat tail to hitch a ride on. That being said we have accumulated 57 wins and over 500 top tens on Tour all by ourselves. Amongst all component companies we likely have more Tour win than any other company. Not to mention the 7 world long drive championship wins that we have under our belt.
For the 2008 season, we are introducing our latest creation, the Harrison Saga. Taken into consideration the Mugen line that we have at the higher end, we thought we need to compliment it with something that costs a bit less in light of the weak economy. The new Saga shaft line has a dynamic profile. As the overall shaft stiffness increases, the tip section stiffens up and its resistance to torque drops. In this scenario a Tour player, using an X flex, and a regular golfer, using an R flex, can be using the same shaft brand.
Like most of the leading shafts in the market place today, Saga is a high tip-butt contrast shaft. A high tip-butt contract shaft generally produces a slightly higher launch angle so that the golfer can use it in conjunction with a low spin ball that is so popular today. We further tweaked the flex profile of the shaft so that the softer flexes have higher launch angle to appeal to a larger audience.
To see exactly where Saga stands amongst its competition, we acquired three 60 gram S flex shafts from the market place: Fujikura Rombax, Aldila DVS and Matrix Ozik. We run all of them through a thorough E-I curve study, and pleasantly we found that their E-I curves, flex profile, are actually quite similar. Rombax and DVS have the same overall torque as Saga, while Ozik has 0.8 degree higher torque. DVS is stiffer than Saga, while Ozik is softer. Saga’s tip is a touch softer than the others, but Saga has much lower tip torque than the other three. It is fair to assume that Saga should compare favorably in accuracy and workability.
Now that we know the full E-I profiles of all four shafts, it makes us wonder why the other three cost three to four times more than Saga. Is it possible that you are chipping in the million-dollar player contracts that they have? What we are going to do next is to install all four shafts in one Alpha interchangeable driver head and send them to Golf Lab in Carlsbad for independent robot test. Golf Lab is the outfit that does independent test for the name brands. After the test, we would be happy to share the results with you. We are quite curious as to whether they performance is three to four times better than that of Saga.
Note: Callaway, Aldila, Matrix, Fujikura, Rombax, DVS, Ozik are trade marks and registered trade marks of their respective companies.
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