Geotech is Japan's leading components maker and has long provided high quality component designs at reasonable prices. They've worked hard to provide a mix of tweaked and original designs for players of all budgets looking for great feel and performance. Their Prototype RF700 lineup has been very successful with its drivers, woods and utility providing top notch performance at a fraction of the cost of big mainstream brands. This season they decided to release an all new Prototype RF700 Forged iron, an original design made for wide range of golfers.
Geotech notes that the Prototype RF700 Forged is a CNC machined muscle back iron, forged from S25C steel. Even though its a muscle back, Geotech has put its target audience as players ranging from a 0 to 25 handicap which is pretty wide range of skill levels. After examining the iron's design and giving it a try I can see why. The RF700 sets up very much like a blade but the back face is almost cavity like, much like the Romaro Ray H I recently tested. Because of this I've decided to call the RF700 a neo muscle cavity, a hybrid of sorts that has the feel and playability of a blade but the forgiving characteristics of a cavity back.
The unique design of the RF700 features a forged head which is then CNC machined into the finished head you see here. This intricate machine process creates what Geotech calls VFTD: Vetical Flow Thickness Design. From top to bottom the thickness of the iron varies from 4.7mm at its thinnest to 12.9mm at its thickest. What this does is create a balanced head that provides feel, launch and distance. The thinnest area of the iron crosses right through the center to create maximum rebound off the face and more distance, while the thickest area is the lower cavity portion which increases MOI by lowering the CG for easy launch and a wider sweet area.
Even though the thickest part of the iron is towards the sole, the actual sole itself is long and narrow. The front edge is slightly killed for some leading edge relief and the sole itself is rounded to provide some stability and control though different lies including firmer turf. While many irons today - especially JDM models are showing more bounce, the RF700 keeps bounce at a minimum with the 9i feauring 2.5* and the PW 3.5* of bounce.
The face profile of the RF700 Forged features a bit of everything as it has a reasonably straight top line paired with a boxy and higher toe as preferred by better players. But at the same time, its longer from heel to toe stretching the sweet spot side to side. The leading edge is also ever so slightly rounded, again for added ease of use and to promote more pure impact in various lies.
At address, better players will appreciate the thin top line and the lack of offset. It certainly does look like a muscle back at address as there is no sign of a cavity. When I first got the iron, I did notice how it set up at address like a blade (is it a blade or not?) but the longer face really stood out for me. For the average golfer there are many features of this neo muscle cavity like its lower CG and thinner center as well as its rounded sole and leading edge. The longer face allows for players to miss towards the toe or heel to minimize lost distance. As an average golfer, this was a playable iron for me even though its supposed to be a muscle back like design. Feel is very good and the ball launches well and jumps off the face at impact very much like many cavity backs today that do feature thinner faces. It may not be as pure as other blades that feature thick muscle areas right behind the sweet spot but the RF700 undoubtedly feels forged. I handed the iron to a scratch golfer practicing on the course and he right away said "oh blade" and he stuck a few and said "very nice".
The Prototype RF700 Forged is a cavity back in disguise as a CNC muscle back design iron. It has balanced performance, with good feel, easy launch, and good distance and forgiveness. Many people will like its clean but interesting looks, and even more will like its price tag and the fact it can be bought as heads only or built by Geotech with any shaft or grip to the customer's specs. It offers something for every one in a good quality package and good price. The RF700 Forged is already in the pro shop and there are even matching wedges!