Serious and recreational golfers alike know the Callaway brand name, as it has become one of the leading manufacturers of golf clubs in the world. But it may surprise those same golfers to learn that the Callaway brand didn’t even exist in the early 1980s.
Much of Callaway’s reputation grew because of its innovation in driver designs. But the company has made impressive irons for a few decades as well. Calloway irons may feature cavity or muscle backs, and they vary in their loft and their materials, both of which impact the feel of the club and its shot consistency. While Calloway irons can be purchased in sets, they are also sold individually, allowing golfers to choose the right clubs for their bag.
Calloway makes irons for all skill and experience levels, but the number of models they offer can be intimidating. To learn more about their offerings and to find the right iron for your bag, continue reading our buying guide.
You can use irons on tee shots, from lies on the fairway, from the rough, from the fringe, or from a sand trap. This makes them the most versatile clubs you’ll carry in your bag.
An iron is a type of golf club made to deliver precise shots with less distance than woods. This type of club is distinguished by a flat large face with an angle that creates a high loft on the ball.
The iron was traditionally made of a solid piece of iron, hence the name. And even though Callaway irons now consist of a variety of metals, including stainless steel, zinc, and titanium, the name “iron” has persisted.
Callaway irons are available in two design shapes: cavity and muscle.
The cavity back has a hollowed-out area on the back side of the clubhead. This allows the manufacturer to place a higher percentage of the weight of the clubhead around the perimeter. With this design, inexperienced golfers can better keep the clubhead on the proper swing path.
A cavity-shaped iron also has a large sweet spot in the clubface. This means that balls struck off-center on the clubface will remain on target better than those hit with a muscle back iron.
The muscle back iron from Callaway has a solid design in the back. It’s also called a blade-style iron. This design evenly distributes weight through the clubhead, giving the experienced golfer the ability to control spin and to shape shots more precisely.
Muscle irons are made for advanced golfers who need more precision and less forgiveness for off-center strikes on the clubface.
Here are a few of the key design features of Callaway irons that you can pick to match the shots you need to make.
Irons have different angles in the clubface. This angle delivers a particular loft on the ball, as well as a certain distance. Irons with a sharper angle will strike the ball higher with a shorter distance.
Having more of a loft angle in the iron is perfect for hitting balls toward the green on an approach shot. The high lofted shot will not bounce and roll much after it hits the green, which is the desired play around the green.
A shaft on an iron with a sharp loft angle is shorter than the shaft on an iron with less of a loft angle in the clubface. The longer shaft allows the golfer to generate more clubhead speed at impact, but it also makes the ball tougher to control.
Shafts may consist of a few different materials.
- Steel: A steel shaft is common for the average player. It doesn’t have much flex to it, which makes the iron easy to control.
- Graphite: A graphite shaft is lightweight, so the golfer can generate extra clubhead speed. It also will flex more than the steel shaft. Advanced golfers can control the graphite shaft, but inexperienced golfers may struggle with graphite shafts.
- Combination: Some shafts mix graphite and steel, usually using graphite in the tip of the shaft. This design delivers moderate control while maintaining the stiffness that average golfers like.
All Callaway irons have grooves in the clubface. The grooves serve to pull water and dirt away, allowing the clubface to make cleaner contact with the ball, which will give the golfer more control over the shot.
Keep these grooves clean in your Callaway iron, and you’ll have more consistent shots.
Callaway iron prices
Inexpensive: The least expensive Callaway irons cost $30 to $80 individually. These irons may be older models that are now offered at a discount. Beginner irons are also available in this range.
Mid-range: Mid-range Callaway irons cost from $80 to $150 apiece. Intermediate and advanced golfers should be able to generate consistent distances and loft angles with these irons.
Expensive: For advanced golfers who need precision control, you may need to pay $150 to $250 per Callaway iron. These irons have a nice feel at the point of contact so you can steer the ball or put the precise amount of spin on it. Some irons in this price range will have a unique color or finish as well.
Purchasing Callaway irons in sets will save you significantly on the price of each club A typical set of Callaway irons consists of 3- through 9-irons and a pitching wedge. A Callaway irons set costs from $500 to $1,000.
When shopping for a particular Callaway iron, you need to understand the numbering system used for these golf clubs. Use these tips to find the right iron for your game.
- Long irons: Among Callaway irons, these clubs include 2-, 3-, and 4-irons. An average golfer can hit 170 to 210 yards with a long iron, but they are difficult to control compared to other irons. Long irons have a lower trajectory than short and mid-range irons, so you’ll get a bounce forward after the ball hits the ground, adding distance.
- Mid-range irons: Mid-range irons, the 5-, 6-, and 7-irons among Callaway models, provide the best mix of control and distance. An average golfer can hit shots of 135 to 180 yards with these irons.
- Short irons: Calloway 8- and 9-irons are short irons. As an average golfer, you can expect to hit 110 to 145 yards with a short iron. These irons have a high loft angle in the clubface and are easier to hit accurately than a long iron.
- Wedges: Wedges also fit in the family of Callaway irons as they have the same basic shape as other irons. Wedges have the greatest loft angle on the clubface of any iron. An average golfer can hit wedges between 80 and 125 yards.
When playing on an executive course (also called a par-3 course), you may only need to use irons and a putter because each hole is short in distance.
Q. Is there a secondary market for used Callaway irons?
A. Quite a few golfers will purchase used Callaway irons, so the secondary market is strong. You may pay a little bit more upfront for the Callaway iron brand name when buying them new, but you can sell them when you purchase a new set of irons, recouping some of your initial investment.
Q. How long should my Callaway irons last?
A. An average golfer should get 5 to 7 years of great performance from their irons. If you care for the clubs properly — keeping them clean, storing them indoors away from temperature variations, and not throwing them after a bad shot — you may get up to 10 years of performance depending on how regularly you play.
Q. Do Callaway irons have a bounce measurement?
A. Bounce is primarily a feature found in wedges rather than standard irons and refers to the design of the sole of the club. Clubs with more bounce do not dig into the turf as much as clubs with less bounce. If you want less bounce in your Callaway irons, pick a design with a wider sole.
Q. Do I need headcovers for my Callaway irons?
A. This is a personal preference. Irons are durabie, so if their clubheads bang into each other a few times in your golf bag, it’s not a huge deal. However, if you want your irons to remain in the best possible condition, sliding headcovers over each iron after a shot is a good idea. These headcovers often consist of a stiff material and they fit tightly over the clubhead.