Lynx

Model: Black Cat Tour-MC/DC
Material/Mfg: Billet Forged 1035 Carbon Steel with CNC Milled Cavity Design
Introduction: 2006


Lynx had not had a forged iron since Payne Stewart was on staff in 1999. Just like Payne’s irons the Black Cat Tour MC and DC’s started off as a forged blade. Unlike his the backs these were 100% CNC milled to geometric dimension before being nickel/chrome plated. The heads were forged at Charles Su’s VirageTech facility in Szechuan province of China. The MC stood for muscle cavity while the slightly larger DC meant deep cavity design. The two models could be mixed and matched for a desired custom set configuration. Golfsmith had me design these for their Elite Clubmaker’s Program but also sold pre-assembled sets at their retail stores.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat
Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: Black Cat 800MC
Material/Mfg: Investment Cast 6-4 Titanium with Carbon Fiber Crown
Introduction: 2005


Golfsmith was on the leading edge of carbon crown technology with both this model and the Snake Eyes 600T-C and PowerLink. Of the three models this was the overall best performer. While the PowerLink catered to the high trajectory/high spin hitter and the 600T-C suited the low launch golfer, the 800MX was the club for the masses. It featured a recessed support bar across the crown which helped give the driver more of a 100% titanium sound. Many of the carbon crown drivers did not possess the sharp tight impact sound that most golfers were seeking. The 800MX did. It was accompanied by matching carbon crown fairway woods. However it wasn’t long before the industry shied away from the carbon crown as being a main design feature. It ultimately became a means to an end in achieving a desired performance; not the focus of the construction as it had been early on.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: H3 Progressive Transitional Iron Set
Material/Mfg: Investment Cast 17-4 Hybrids, Investment Cast 431 Stainless Irons
Introduction: 2004


The H3’s marked the first transitional set of Lynx irons – hybrid clubs replacing the long irons and traditional cavity back irons throughout the rest of the set. The reason these clubs are of note is not because of any ground breaking design or new material. It is because it was a regurgitation of another I had already done under the Golfsmith brand called FireSteel. It goes to show how impactful a brand name can be. We couldn’t give the FireSteel irons away but the Lynx H3 sold like hot cakes. And deservingly so as they were very easy to play with . . . just like the FireSteel irons were.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: HXI Transitional Iron Set
Material/Mfg: Investment Cast 431 Stainless Steel
Introduction: 2007, 2010


The HXI irons were the second and third generation transition sets under the Lynx brand. Greater streamlining went into the hybrid and irons design with greater turf relief designed into the soles. I particularly like the styling of the 2010 model. Many of the Lynx projects resulted in ‘design change by committee’ and the models seldom retained the same heart and soul my staff and I put into the concepts. Fortunately the 2010 HXI’s reflect about 90% of our initial design intent. I only wish Golfsmith had allowed us to spend more money on the urethane dampening inserts and cavity medallions.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: LX3 Driver and Woods
Material/Mfg: 6-4 Titanium, 15-3-3-3 Beta Titanium Face (driver), 17-4 Stainless Steel (fairways & hybrids) – with Fixed Weights
Introduction: 2007


The challenge behind the design of the Lynx LX3 woods was to provide a high moment of inertia (MOI) in a relatively small head size. Due to the LX3’s triangular shape the driver’s head volume was barely 420cc. I was able to get the MOI up with the rest of the company’s 460cc drivers through strategic fixed weight locations. A large 15-gram weight was positioned in line with the intended impact plane. Two smaller weights were positioned in heel and toe. There is greater efficiency stabilizing off-center impacts with a larger rearward weight than dividing the mass up into heel and toe weights. However the three together make an excellent system of clubhead stability. Unlike previous fixed weight models in the Lynx line these weights were placed in the sole instead of the skirt which contributed towards improving the vertical gear effect. This was especially a help with fairway and hybrid wood launch conditions.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: LX5
Material/Mfg: Investment Cast 6-4 Titanium Body, Magnesium Crown, Internal Steel Weights
Introduction: 2008


The LX5 incorporated a number of new technology applications for my design team. The first being the magnesium crown technology which was brazed to the investment cast titanium body. The magnesium, weighing 1.8 grams/cc is significantly lighter than the titanium at 4.7 grams/cc. With the weight savings in the crown two stainless steel weights were installed in the ‘exhaust port’ locations on the sole. The brazing process of joining steel, titanium and magnesium together was a first for us. Likewise was the development of our DOC (Dynamically Optimized CT) face geometry that lead to much higher CT readings on off-center face measurements. We had originally sampled this design using a black mirror PVD coat with no color accents – Lynx marketing felt a major color splash was the appropriate direction for production clubs.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: Tour MC
Material/Mfg: Billet Forged 1035 Carbon Steel, 100% CNC Milled Cavity – Nickel/Chrome Plating
Introduction: 2009


David Cersley tackled this design with superb execution. Starting with a thick billet forged blade design he cut away at the muscle to create an elegant 100% CNC milled cavity design. This is a rendition of the model he has been playing with for the past couple of years. A matching slightly larger Tour DC was also developed but never went to market. Originally designed as an Elite Clubmakers Program model the Tour MC ended up being sold as a complete club through Golfsmith’s retail stores.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: LX Ti
Material/Mfg: 431 Stainless Steel Body with Titanium Face, Urethane Cavity Dampener
Introduction: 2008


On occasion the R&D group is presented a project in which manufacturing costs are not restricted and we can do whatever we want from a technology standpoint. The Lynx LX Ti irons were the result of such a program. The 431 stainless steel body is the frame for a 6-4 titanium face enabling more perimeter weighting for greater head stability. While titanium has always lead to a soft feel when used in irons we took additional measures by incorporating a urethane dampener directly behind the impact zone. Ultra-light shafts were used in the LX Ti's. True Temper's 75-gram GS75's were the steel offering while a proprietary composite weighing 56 grams was the graphite offering.

Jeff Sheets Golf,Club Design,Club Development,Lynx,Golfsmith,Black Cat

Model: Black Cat Woods
Material/Mfg: 6-4 Titanium (drivers), 17-4 Stainless (fairways/hybrids) with Adjustable Weights
Introduction: 2003 – 2007


I had developed a variety of Black Cat woods over the years for the Lynx line. Each was innovative in design in addition to other technologies such as beta titanium crowns, nano-tube composite inserts, chemical etching wall thicknesses in addition to many different weighting options. Often the technology elements of the drivers were carried over to the fairway woods and hybrids.