Irons make up the majority of our golf bags. When you have great iron shafts in place, chances are you will be more consistent and lower your golf scores. When looking for the best iron shafts on the market, you must decide between steel and graphite and the specific launch characteristics you are looking for.
With the best iron shafts we tested, we kept the budget in mind. In addition, we looked at ball flight and the direction of the golf shots.
Check out our guide on the best driver shafts as well.
Best Iron Shafts: Our Top Picks
Best Overall Steel: True Temper Dynamic Gold Steel
Best Distance Steel: Project X LZ Steel
Best For Higher Ball Flight: True Temper Elevate Tour VSS Pro Steel
Best Overall Graphite: AeroTech SteelFiber i80cw Graphite
Best Premium Graphite: Tour Shop Fresno AD Graphite
Best For Golfers Switching from Steel: Fujikura New PRO Series 75i Graphite
Best Value Steel: Project X LS Steel
Best Overall Steel: True Temper Dynamic Gold Steel Iron Shafts
The True Temper Dynamic Golf golf shafts are the most well-known on the market and are played by millions of golfers looking for consistency and great control.
- Easy to control the ball flight
- One of the most popular shafts of all times
- Flexible for a steel shaft
- It will be a bit heavier in weight than some of the high-performance, lightweight steel shafts
For many years, golfers did not have nearly as many golf shaft options as they do today. This led to people playing the same few golf shafts. For some lucky people, the True Temper Dynamic Gold was the shaft of choice.
Everything about the True Temper Dynamic Gold is high-performing and highly rated. Whether you are looking for distance, consistency, or an impressive feel from your set of irons, the True Temper Dynamic Gold can get it done.
The Dynamic Gold shafts come in various flexes, but the regular steel tends to be the best choice for the average golfer looking for a lower ball flight and more control. This is a great option for those switching from Graphite to steel shafts.
Best Distance Steel: Project X LZ Steel Iron Shafts
The Project X LZ Golf shafts make it easier for players to transfer the energy from their swing to the golf ball with minimal effort.
- Softer mid section for a better feel
- Loading Zone Technology to help increase energy transfer
- Higher ball flight, even on the miss hits
- Not a perfect choice for the faster swing speeds
The Project X LZ Golf Shafts are a premium choice for those that want only the best in their irons. The thing that sets the Project X LZ Shafts apart from others on the market is the feel.
The feel of these golf clubs will allow golfers to work the ball quite a bit more. If you want to hit a draw or a fade on demand, the Project X LZ can help.
Another great thing about this golf shaft option is that it comes in a progressive weight profile. This means that the stiffer the shaft gets, the heavier it gets as well. This tends to be a good match for most players because faster swing speed players need the weight and stiffer flex in their shafts.
Related: Stiff or Regular Flex: What Shaft to Play?
Best For Higher Ball Flight: True Temper Elevate Tour VSS Pro Steel Iron Shafts
The True Temper Elevate Tour VSS Pro helps golfers who struggle with all the new low spin and low launch shafts; this option will get the ball back up in the air.
- Very lightweight golf shaft
- Higher ball flight
- The ball will hold on the greens
- With higher spin rates, some golfers have trouble controlling overall flight and launch
The True Temper Elevate 95 Golf Shafts are built for golfers looking for more spin in their golf shafts. Although low spin is becoming valuable on driver shots, higher spin is necessary for great ball flight and getting the ball to stop on the green.
There is a new technology built into the True Temper Elevate called VSS Technology. The idea behind this is to help reduce vibrations and get a much softer feel. In addition, players will get a higher spin and a golf ball that stops and holds on a green.
Best Overall Graphite: AeroTech SteelFiber i80cw Graphite Iron Shafts
The AeroTech SteelFiber i80cw takes everything that is great about Graphite and steel and combines it into one impressive choice for players of all levels.
- Comes in taper and parallel tip
- Iron shafts come pre-cut
- Helps golfers to get distance back
- Expensive technology in these golf shafts
The problem with graphite iron shafts is that they tend to make it difficult to control the ball. You may have difficulty keeping the ball in play if you add some swing speed to your golf shots.
The SteelFiber i80 allows for a great combination of graphite and steel feel, giving you much more consistency in your shots.
Anytime you look at a graphite shaft compared to a steel shaft, get ready for a higher price tag. Golf iron shafts in Graphite can be costly, but this is a must for players with slower swing speeds.
Best Premium Graphite Iron Shafts: Tour Shop Fresno AD Graphite Iron Shafts
The Graphite Design Tour AD golf shafts come in weights from 50 to 115 grams, so there is an option here for all players and all swing speeds. In addition, when you purchase the Tour AD shafts, you will also have the option to pick the grip that you want.
With Graphite Design Tour AD iron shafts being manufactured in Japan, there are very tight manufacturing tolerances. These are lightweight steel shafts with incredible distance and control that stands out.
Premium performance in this shaft will result in a mid launch and mid spin profile, something that works for almost any player that appreciates feeling and consistency in their shots.
Best For Golfers Switching from Steel: Fujikura New PRO Series 75i Graphite Iron Shafts
The Fujikura Pro Series 75i is the perfect option for a golfer looking to make the switch from steel to graphite; with steel lengths and weights, this shaft is a unique option on the market.
- Acts more like steel than Graphite
- All irons shafts come to the same length, so it's easy to hard step or soft step the set
- Dense inner core for better feel and consistency
- May be a bit heavy for some golfers who use graphite shafts
With the Fujikura New Pro Series 75i, golfers will find an impressive mix of performance, feel, and functionality. The shaft features a HDCC which stands for high density composite core. Technology in this core allowed Fujikura to make the shaft a little heavier and more consistent at the same time.
In addition, the lengths of these shafts can be made to match steel lengths, something other graphite shafts don’t do. Players who want the same consistency and control they can get in their steel without using steel will enjoy the Fujikura Pro Series.
Another great feature here is that there is very little vibration at impact when using the Fujikura Pro Series 75i; this is, without a doubt, a premium golf shaft with the better player in mind.
Best Value Steel Iron Shaft: Project X LS Steel Iron Shafts
The Project X LS will allow strong golfers to get their full distance potential while still remaining in control of their shots; this shaft does it all for a very fair price.
- A stable design with little vibration
- Fair price for the technology offered
- Great fit for faster swinging players
- Lower spin shafts can make it hard to launch the ball
Many great players will tell you that the golf shaft they use in their clubs is just as important, if not more important, than the club head. With the Project X LS, you can get a high quality golf irons shaft for a fair price.
The Project X LS is a low spin golf shaft built for those that want a little more distance and better ball flight. In addition, golfers that often struggle to keep the ball down and balloon it a bit times will like what Project X LS has to offer.
With a lower launching and low spin golf shaft, you can still get a ball to stop on the green, but it will be with the spin you want to create, not the spin you accidentally create. In other words, golfers can control what they do with the ball as opposed to hitting it everywhere.
What To Look For When Choosing A Golf Iron Shaft
Of course, the first thing that most golfers think about when choosing an iron shaft is whether or not to get graphite or steel. This is important, but there are other features that are just as important for players to consider.
Steel or Graphite
Steel golf shafts are known for control and consistency. They are slightly heavier, and most golfers find that they can hit more accurate shots if they use a steel golf shaft. Many higher swing speed players can only find weights that work for them in a steel shaft.
The graphite shafts are designed to give players more distance. The lightweight materials make it so much easier to swing the club fast. Golfers can get incredible ball flight with a graphite shaft as well.
The steel or graphite decision is often thought of as steel for lower handicap players and Graphite for higher handicapper players, but that is not the case.
The things you need to think about are the overall performance and feel and the types of shots that you need to hit on the course.
Related: Graphite vs. Steel Shafts: Which is right for your golf game?
Graphite and steel shafts are different lengths. On average, the graphite shafts are about a ½ inch longer than the steel shafts.
Many golf shafts you purchase will come already cut to length; others will need to be cut to meet the needs of your game. If you are trying to hard step or soft step your iron set, make sure you are getting shafts that are not already pre cut to the length for each club.
Many golfers use a professional club fitter to replace the iron shafts, as there is some attention to detail here that is important to follow.
Launch and Spin
The best iron shafts on the market have a launch and spin profile that is a specific match to your game. With more and more golfers getting higher swing speeds, the lower spinning shafts have been a great addition to the lineup.
However, if you don’t generate a lot of spins naturally, you must be sure to use a higher spinning golf shaft. The higher spin will help you stop the ball on the greens and encourage that distance that you are likely struggling with.
Don’t be sold on the idea that these lower spinning golf shafts are better; they are simply there to help improve overall performance for the faster-swinging players.
Some golf irons shafts come with a grip already in place. This is a nice feature and a great way to save money on your iron shaft purchase. Keep that in mind as you shop for the best iron shafts.
If you have to put a grip in after the fact, expect that it will cost a considerably higher amount.
The weight of your golf iron shaft is determined based on your strength and speed. If you have a ton of speed and strength and can hit the ball a long way, the weight that you look for in your clubs should be considerably heavier.
For slower swing speed players, these 40 and 50g shafts are a much better option to consider. The lower weights will help encourage more speed and increase overall consistency on the course.
Frequently Asked Questions
With irons making up the majority of our golf bag, when you make a shaft change, it’s a big decision. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the best iron shafts for golfers.
When choosing between steel and Graphite for iron shafts, try to consider both the swing speed and launch characteristics of the iron shaft. If you want to keep the ball a little lower, the steel shaft is probably the better option; Graphite works well for higher launch and slightly more distance.
Some of the most popular golf shafts on the market are the True Temper and the Project X. These are brands sold to both amateurs and professionals.
Tour players use premium steel shafts, many of them use the True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue. Some others will use the Nippon golf shafts because of their premium feel.
If your swing speed is more than 100mph, expect to get better distance and control using a stiff golf shaft.
Typically it is best to play with the same flex in all of your irons. However, if you have a good amount of speed, you may want to consider a stiff shaft in the driver and a regular in the irons.
Although golf shafts seem like they continue to get more expensive, there is a good reason behind them. Expensive golf shafts use impressive technology and materials to help make the game of golf easier and more entertaining for players. If you are a serious golfer looking for a specific type of performance on the course, the expensive golf shafts are well worth the price.
Hopefully, you have some new ideas for which golf iron shafts could work for your game. Remember to keep in mind these clubs’ launch and spin characteristics to ensure you get a good fit for your game. The True Temper Dynamic Gold still stands out as the best overall golf iron shaft on the market. It’s been around for a long time, and it’s proven its spot at the top of this list for great distance, forgiveness, stability, and low vibration at impact.
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