For shaft obsessed golf gearheads like me, it seems almost impossible that its been 5-years since Aldila launched the original Rogue (the Rogue Silver 125) on tour. 31 wins including 3 Majors later, it’s being replaced, or more accurately, upgraded. It’s been a hell of a run.
Given how reticent tour players can be to change anything in their bag, it’s fair to describe Rogue’s rise as meteoric. As the popularity of the 125 increased on tour, the Rogue Silver 110 and Rogue Black 95 quickly became fixtures in several OEM stock lineups. At Rogue’s peak, between the silvers, blacks, blues, and greens, if you didn’t have a Rogue in your bag, you almost certainly played with someone who did. As with most any shaft that succeeds both on tour and in retail lineups, as the popularity grew, it became more difficult for consumers to differentiate between aftermarket and OEM models.
With Aldila now fully integrated under the Mitsubishi Chemical umbrella, and fully able to leverage the material capabilities of its parent company, the new Rogue offers Aldila the opportunity to relaunch one of the most popular shaft labels in recent memory while redrawing and clarifying the lines between its OEM and aftermarket businesses.
The New Rogue Siver
To that end, Rogue Silver 130 M.S.I. isn’t a middle of the bell curve offering. It’s designed for better, or at least stronger, perhaps aggressive swingers. The performance advancements begin with a new 130 M.S.I. (95-ton material) and NexGen Micro Laminate Technology, which Aldila says produces a shaft void of “dead zones.” To varying degrees, shaft companies want you to be drawn to the hot new material, but with most anything else in golf, it really boils down to improving the strength to weight ratio, with the ultimate goal of adding stability without making the shaft heavier.
As to how the new materials translate to improved performance; Aldila describes the Rogue 130 as a tighter Rogue 125, or a Rogue 125 on steroids. As a guy who, at one time, had some flavor of Rogue in every metalwood in his bag and a utility iron to boot, that’s plenty to pique my curiosity. In more concrete terms, the performance tweaks include a more stable handle section, lower balance point (though it’s still counterbalanced), and lower torque. All of that should translate as lower launch, lower spin, a flatter trajectory, and tighter dispersion.
Cosmetically, the white and silver paint of the original Rogue has been replaced by a silver ion-plated finish. I liked the white just fine, but the silver ion positively shines. It’s next level premium.
Aldila Rogue 130 M.S.I: Cool Clubs S3 Comparison
“S3 Technologies utilizes the most advanced shaft testing technology in the industry. The Shaft Simulation System (S3), which was developed in 2013, is a fully-automated, all-in-one shaft profiling machine. In a matter of minutes, the S3 determines the following shaft specs: (Straightness, Consistency Profile, EI Profile, CPM Analysis and Torque. While some of the aforementioned specs can be obtained from shaft manufacturers, a lack of industry standards prevents that data from being used for accurate apples-to-apples comparisons. S3 Technologies, solves this challenge by testing all of our production in-house using the S3. This gives S3 Technologies a unique and in-depth understanding of the quality and performance of the industry’s shafts.”
Not only does S3 give us standardized quantitative information about the shaft(s) being reviewed, the data we share will provide you with a much better sense of how the shaft being reviewed compares with similarly specced offerings on the market today.
For our CoolClubs S3-powered comparisons we pulled profile data from the Rogue 125 and new Rogue 130 M.S.I. models. We’ve also included comparisons to the S3 database average of shafts with similar frequency measurements. Please note that while our comparisons are usually based on stiff flex models in the 60-gram range, the charts reflect measurements of 60g X-Stiff versions of both Rogue 130 and Rogue 125.
Rogue 130 M.S.I Launch Characteristics
The chart below compares the S3 launch characteristics of the Rogue 130 M.S.I to the previous 125 M.S.I. version along with the database average launch characteristics for similar shafts and Neutral, which S3 uses to describe a true mid launch characteristic.
The updates to the Rogue 130 have primarily affected the butt section and balance point of the shaft, the launch characteristics of the shaft remain similar. Cool Clubs S3 classifies the 65g X-Stiff Rogue 130 as a mid-low launch shaft. As you can see, the new model is only ever-so-slightly lower launching.
Rogue 130 M.S.I. Zone EI
The following chart compares the stiffness of the Rogue 130 to the Rogue 125 in the butt, mid, and tip sections. Again, measurements are based on the x-stiff versions of the 60-gram model.
Here we can see that the butt section of the Rogue 130, as Aldila says, has been stiffened. While the Rogue 125 was a bit softer in the butt section than similar shafts in the S3 database, the Rogue 130 is slightly above average. The midsection is slightly firmer, while the tip region measures just a bit softer. Overall, the Rogue 130 M.S.I. can be considered slightly stiff relative to flex.
Rogue 130 M.S.I. Balance Point
The S3 data confirms that the balance point of the Rogue 130 M.S.I. is lower than it was in the 125. While it can still be considered a counterbalanced shaft, it’s not as counterbalanced as its predecessor.
As you may recall from our Golf Geeks Story on Shaft Performance, a higher balance point allows for more head weight without drastically impacting the swingweight. For golfers seeking more distance (admittedly often at the expense of accuracy), this allows drivers to be built to longer playing lengths.
Rogue 130 M.S.I Swing Speed Recommendations
The chart below provides swing speed recommendations for the various weights and flexes within the Rogue 130 M.S.I. lineup.
From the Cool Clubs Fitting Team
Modeled after Aldila’s Rogue Silver 125 M.S.I. the new Rogue Silver 130 M.S.I. is beefier and designed for the player who swings fast and hard and wants stability. A lower launching and lower spinning shaft, it is available in three weight classes – 60, 70, and 80. Across all weights and flexes, it’s a shaft that requires commitment and speed to optimize its performance.
The 60 is available in a TR, TS, and TX option. The ‘T’ stands for Tour, which lets you know there’s nothing watered down about the Rogue 130’s profile. The TR is good for swing speeds up to 100 mph, the TS for 100 to 115 mph, and the TX is designed for club speeds over 120 MPH. The Rogue Silver 130 M.S.I. 70 is available in the TS and TX where the TS is best in the 100 to 115 mph range, while the TX is suited to a swing speed of 125 MPH or more. The biggest beast of all – the 80 – is only available in the TX flex. The club needs to be moving at 125+ to maximize its performance.
Comparing the two shafts the Rogue Silver 130 M.S.I. 60 has a lower balance point albeit slightly higher than other similar shafts in the S3 Database. The butt section is stiffer, mid-section is slightly stiffer, and the tip is slightly softer than the Rogue Silver 125 M.S.I. 60.
Faster, quick tempos players looking for better clubhead control through impact should look to try the Aldila Rogue 130 M.S.I..
Similar shafts, based on EI profile, torque, and other Cool Clubs S3 data, include the Project X HZRDUS Smoke Black, and not surprisingly, the original Rogue 125. Golfers looking for a bit higher launch should consider the Mitsubishi Diamana D+ LE. Lower launch alternatives include the Fujikura ATMOS TS Black and Project X EvenFlow T11000 White.
MSRP for the Aldila Rogue 130 M.S.I. is $450. For more information or to find a fitter/dealer near you, visit the Aldila Golf website.