TaylorMade SLDR Fairway Woods
Category: Better-Player Fairway Woods
WE TESTED: 3 (adjusts 13.5° to 16.5°) with Fujikura Speeder 77 graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: TaylorMade’s “Loft-Sleeve” offers ±1.5° change. The low-forward CG location combines with an improved “Speed Pocket” for more ball speed and less backspin.
PLAYABILITY: Exceptionally useful from the tee box; boring trajectory is amazing in windy conditions; can pretty much deliver any shot you want if you strike it well.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: Sidespin isn’t a problem— well-struck shots fly straight, and most misses stay in play; a dependable fairway finder when you don’t need to hit all-out on a driver.
DISTANCE: This is the club’s strongest attribute; very long—clearly one of the biggest hitters in the test; long from the fairway, but it really shines off a tee.
FEEL: The SLDR delivers a hard, powerful sensation at impact; center hits are fulfilling; testers feel a stable sensation on almost all shots.
LOOK: Testers applaud TaylorMade’s return to a more traditional shape, color and overall appearance than recent models; compact clubhead and simple alignment aid make aiming easy.
Not as much help on off-center hits as some testers look for; sensations on mis-hits feel a little harsh to a few guys; trajectory can be on the low side, so it’s important to use the adjustability feature to add loft.
BOTTOM LINE: TaylorMade’s best-looking model in recent memory is about as long as anything around.
NEXT REVIEW: Titleist 913F.d Fairway Woods