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Whether you’re on the market for a new gap wedge or an entire set to start you off the right way (in case you’re only just getting interested in golf), you might want to check out this Cobra King PŪR wedge review where we will take a closer look at the club. Now, the PŪR is a sort of a new kid on the block, so there’s no really hard evidence on how it does in the long run. However, if the somewhat earlier Cobra King (released in April 2016) or the even older Trusty Rusty are anything to go by, it should do just fine.
In a hurry?
Why the Cobra King PŪR Wedge?
As the astute readers may have already guessed, the Cobra King PŪR wedge pretty much just builds upon the success of its predecessor, the Cobra King, which was, in turn, mainly designed as a replacement to everyone’s favourite, the good ole Trusty Rusty.
With this in mind, the fact that all three wedges share certain features shouldn’t come as a surprise. For a start, both wedges are made of steel, which puts them a bit on the heavy side. On the one hand, this gives you better feedback, as it were (which should interest low handicappers), but on the other, it does reduce the swing speed a bit.
Another similarity is their grind selection – both King and King PUR come with three soles grinds – Versatile, Classic, and Widelow. On a similar note, it’s worth mentioning that both wedges have fairly large and roundish head profiles, which makes for a pleasing site when you put the club down at address. This final point should appeal to all sorts of players, but mostly to high and mid handicappers – those who could most profit from that little confidence boost.
That said, we’ll be mostly focusing on the differences between these two, discussing how it may affect your game (or not). So, without any further ado, let’s get stuck in!
Cobra King vs. Cobra King PŪR: What’s The Difference?
The more things change, the more they stay the same – an old adage that somehow still avoids sounding like a cliché, and it definitely applies to the newest member of the Cobra King family. True enough, the differences are more striking than the similarities, but looking at the big picture, it’s what’s left the same that really will be selling these puppies.
For a start, yes, the finish is different – with the older model, we had Chrome and Nickel, while the new PUR wedges come raw. Secondly, the grooves are milled differently – while the original King sported CNC-milled ones, the new King (no pun intended) employs the new VFR-milling technology. Also, as an aside, while the old model had 6 lofts (50 through 60 in 2-degree increments), and the new one seems to match it loft-for-loft.
However, the really good news is that Cobra has kept the sole range we’ve come to know and love – the Versatile (self-explanatory), the Classic (just as versatile), and the Widelow (for diggers).
First thing’s first – the name. The King PUR (pronounced just like “pure” rather than “purr”, in case anyone’s wondering) is named so after its pure 304 stainless steel construction. This particular alloy isn’t really an exotic thing – in fact, it’s pretty mundane, being used in all sorts of things, from food processing equipment, through containers for chemical and heaters, all the way springs and, of course, golf clubs.
For our purpose, it’s enough to acknowledge its resistance to rust and corrosion (yes, there is a difference), even if you use it only intermittently, so it should survive for a good long while even if you store it in less than ideal conditions.
That said, the finish on the Cobra King PUR is un-plated, i.e. raw, but will not rust (for those of you not in the know, a raw finish usually means the club was purposefully made that way so it would rust). For anyone not paying attention, that’s because these are made of stainless steel.
As noted earlier, this is one of the, if not the major way in which the King PUR differs from both the original King and the Trusty Rusty. Still, Cobra promises the raw finish will give you that extra grabbing power on the ball you’ve been looking for, and with it enough spin to give you a more versatile wedge and better precision around the greens.
The thing about plating is that it rounds off the edges on the grooves, making them a little bit less rough, so you don’t get the maximum bite. So, in a way, it’s a trade-off between the optimal friction and having your wedge protected from rust (and therefore, being less durable).
However, with the Cobra King PUR, you get a stainless steel head, and a nice thing about that is that it will maintain those edges on your grooves, so you get all the surface roughness you need (and the rules allow).
Another thing that’s worth noting about the raw finish on the King PUR is that it reduces glare, so you have an easier time addressing the ball, not to mention the fact that it looks great because it is a pure look.
King’s New Groove
Each new generation of wedges comes with “new and improved” grooves, and usually it’s just a marketing ploy, but Cobra did come out with something innovative. It’s still early to tell how successful these grooves will be in comparison to what we had on the old King, but so far, so good.
In a nutshell, the old model had CNC-milled grooves with a circular pattern to rough up the face. Obviously, they were wider and shallower in the higher lofts, but steeper and narrower in the lower ones. Conversely, the new King features grooves that were combined with a new milling tech called VFR (Variable Face Roughness). Long story short, it’s meant to maximize two specs related to grooves – peak-to-peak depth and average roughness (RY and RA, respectively).
The same deal about the wider and shallow in the high lofts (56, 58, and 60) and deep and narrow in the low ones (52 and 54) applies here. Couple that with the raw stainless steel finish and you get that better spin you’ve always wanted, as well as better control on the ball trajectory for a nice up and down.
Grind It Out
The entire King family has three different sole grinds, and the same thing applies to its latest addition, the King PUR. As we mentioned ad nauseam, these would be the low-bounce Widelow, its bounce opposite the Classic Grind and the Versatile Grind with its medium bounce.
The Versatile Grind is pretty much what it says on the tin – it comes with a soft leading edge, as well as a toe and heel relief that enables you to play it on a variety of medium to firm surfaces. It’s got a medium bounce, and comes in all lofts (50.08, 52.08, 54.10, 56.10, 58.08, and 60.08).
The Classic Grind is the Switzerland of grinds – it’s neutral, so it should appeal to an overwhelming majority of players, regardless of handicap or how deep a divot you dig. It plays equally well from heavy rough and soft to average turf, as well as soft sand. On a similar note, if you ever need to open up the clubface to hit a flop shot out of a greenside bunker, this puppy can do. You’ll see it in two heads – 56.12 and 60.11.
The Widelow Grind should really come into its own if played by diggers and/or low handicap players. It comes with the lowest bounce and the widest sole (hence the name), so it should play nicely out of medium to soft conditions, and it easily slips under the ball for a nice and clean follow-through. You’ll find it only in the highest-lofted heads – 56.07 and 60.04.
The Final Verdict
All things considered, the Cobra King PUR wedge may be a new kid on the block, but it shapes up to be a nice neighbourhood with this wedge in it (there are bound to be some puns here, but we’ll leave it alone for once). Granted, they did skimp out on the lofts, so there’s no pitching wedge per se (though you can have a short iron fulfil the role, and take the 50 for your gap wedge).
On the flipside, though, you do get a great bounce selection and three very playable grinds, so there’s the versatility. Another major selling point is the 304-stainless steel alloy that lets you have all the advantages of a raw finish without fearing the rust. Of course, the grooves are also slightly improved, which doesn’t really mean much to a majority of players, but in the right hands, it just might make a difference. Now, go outside and have yourself a par-tee!