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Rust on a Wedge: Does it actually add Spin?

Rusty Golf Wedge

If you’re like most golfers you’ll do just about anything to play better. 

My obsession with golf was born when I was 14 years of age, as a freshman in highschool. My parents would take me to the course immediately after school and I’d stay until dark. Rain, wind, cold weather, it didn’t matter… I was at the course. 

Weekends were even better. They’d drop me off at sunrise and pick me up when it got dark. 

My golf goals didn’t stop when the sun went down though. I spent my nights watching the Golf Channel, reading golf books, and cleaning my clubs, all while trying to improve my game. 

I used to leave my clubs in a bucket with soapy water overnight. My goal was to get the clubs to rust to increase their spin on the green. As I said, I would do anything to improve my game. 

In this article, we’ll break down if rust is actually helpful for creating spin, finished wedges vs. raw wedges, and other ways to generate more backspin. 

Is Rust a Spinner for a Wedge?

Have you ever bought new wedges only to find rust on your face after a few months or sooner? If so, I’m sure you’ve gone into panic mode as rust is like a type of cancer with some purchases. 

But what about golf? I’m sure you’ve asked yourself, does rust increase spin? 

Unfortunately, my 14 year old self was wrong. According to MyGolfSpy’s tweets, “Raw wedges are popular on tour – often for their low glare characteristics, and many average golfers choose raw wedges because of the perception that rust adds spin. It doesn’t.” 

They even reached out eight golf club manufacturers (including Callaway Golf Clubs, Vokey and PXG). So why is it that so many golfers think rust will increase spin? 


Rust builds up on the club’s face and many believe that this extra texture should increase friction. But this friction doesn’t actually add more spin on the rusty face. 

But there’s more to the story… 

Plated Wedges and Raw Wedges  

To further confuse golfers, more and more golf companies are now making wedges with “raw” finishes. These clubfaces are intentionally rusty, but not for the reasons that you might think. These wedges include the TaylorMade Milled Grind 3 wedge in black or the Titleist Vokey SM9. 

So why do these companies intentionally rust their wedges? 

Here’s what TaylorMade said on their website, “There’s a reason RAW wedges are preferred by the game’s best players. The unplated material will rust over the years to maintain consistent spin and provide better performance in wet conditions. With RAW Face Technology, only the face will rust while the rest of the head maintains a premium finish.”

This is very interesting – the finish “preserves” consistent spin over time. It may not add spin, but it can help your wedges produce more juice over a longer time. 

Tour pros also love a raw wedge finish because it reduces glare. Some finishes, like chrome, look as good as a brand-new car but aren’t great for your eyes. 

A shiny finish on a plated wedge can create a lot of glare when you look at the clubhead. Because more loft causes more glare, many wedge manufacturers offer other finishes (like jetblack) as an alternative. 

How to Prevent Rusting Golf Clubs 

While some rust on your wedges isn’t the end of the world, you don’t want it on other clubs like your putter. Here are some ways to prevent and remove rust on your golf clubs. 

After each round, wipe your clubs clean

Wiping your clubs after each round is one of the best ways to prevent rusty wedges. As a kid, I noticed my wedges start to rust because it was cold. I would play a round, not clean my clubs down, and then wake up to a rusty wedge.

This is why it’s important to wipe them down and dry them after every round. If you don’t play for a long period of time make sure to store in a warm environment and avoid humidity if possible. 

Use Rust Remover

You can use rust remover to get rid of rust from your clubs. It’s safe to use on golf clubs and should help you keep them looking like new. Steel wool can be used for a better look. 

Coca-Cola will remove rust

Your favorite soft drink may actually help to keep the rust off your golf clubs. You will need a 2-liter Coca-Cola bottle, a pitcher, a scratch-free scrubber and a microfiber towel. 

According to“The interaction between the phosphoric acid in the soda and the iron oxide in the clubs helps dissolve rust. There is also an environmental benefit to the process: using Coca-Cola, instead of commercial rust removers, is an eco-friendlier option.”

Follow the steps below.

  • Fill the container with half the soft drink. 
  • For 24 hours, submerge the clubhead. 
  • Take the clubs out and dry them using the microfiber cloth. While most of the rust will disappear, there may still be some remnants.
  • Use a scrubber that is non-scratch to remove any traces.

This simple trick will make your clubs look better than ever. This is a great way to get rid of clubs you don’t want anymore.

Click here to find out more about selling your golf clubs online

Does Rust add Spin to a Wedge

FAQs about Wedges and More Spin

Are you looking for more information about rust and how to make your wedge shots spin better? Keep reading to learn how you can protect and optimize your golf clubs. 

Is rust good enough for wedges

Rust isn’t bad for wedges and some manufacturers intentionally make finishes that will rust over time. While they won’t add extra spin like most of us think, they can preserve the spin which should help your performance over time. 

Wedges with rust will reduce the glare at the address position. This is a great benefit if you play in a lot of sunny weather and don’t want to battle the sun during most rounds of golf. 

How can you make your wedges spin better?

Every amateur golfer wants more spin with their wedges. While most professional golfers are trying to eliminate spin with full shots as it’s unpredictable.

We have a wealth of information about backspin. Full article available here to give you the best tips.

While these tips will definitely help your short game, don’t forget that buying new wedges more frequently is also needed. Even the best form in the world can’t always create a lot of spin with wedges. 

According to Vokey, one of our top wedge companies “Golfers encounter a variety of conditions with their wedges that lead to the groove edge wearing down over time. Every golfer should evaluate their wedges and grooves at ~75 rounds of play to get the best spin performance.” 

The main reason wedges start to wear down is:

  • Frequent play. The grooves become more worn over time with practice and rounds (especially for firm range balls).
  • Bunker shots Hitting from the sand exposes the clubs to tons of rocks, pebbles, and wear down the face.
  • Abnormal conditions This could include hitting from rocks or other doubtable lies that could impact the face of the club.

To get the most spin, Tiger Woods changed his wedges every week while on the PGA Tour. While that isn’t feasible for the everyday golfer, make sure to look at them after 75 rounds to see if you need a new set. You will notice a big difference in the quality of your grooves!

How does rust affect golf clubs

One of the biggest myths about the golf world is the belief that more spin means more rust. I fell into this trap early on in my golf career but it’s been tested and it’s not true. 

Rust doesn’t hurt golf clubs necessarily but it doesn’t look good either. You might not get the same resale value if you plan to sell them, like irons or a putter. This is why it’s a great idea to use the tips above to clean the rust off your clubs. 

Why does TaylorMade wedges rust 

Yes, some TaylorMade wedges can rust. The Milled Grind 3 wedge in black is a great example. It will intentionally rust in order to preserve spin and keep them performing for a longer duration. 

Do Vokey jet black wedges rust? 

Vokey’s jet black wedges do rust just like the Raw wedges.

I know this from personal experience as I’ve been playing this new finish since about 2018. The moment I saw the rust, I had a flashback to my childhood memories of my old Vokey wedges and my oil can finish.

While the rust won’t add any “Tour sauce” to your shots, the grooves will do the work for you. I’ve played the new Vokey wedges each year and somehow, they just keep getting better and better. They seem to produce more spin with less effort. 

According to Titleist “SM9’s new grooves are cut to the edge to maximize spin. Each Vokey wedge is 100% inspected for utmost quality and performance, and a localized heat treatment is applied to the impact area to double the durability of the groove.”

If you’ve played them before, try the raw steel wedge on your next set as they look great.

Click here to see our complete review of the Titleist Vkey SM9 wedges.

Why do pros have rusty swivels?

Rusty golf clubs are the result of a finished club. A rusty wedge is caused by playing with a raw face instead of a finish such as satin chrome.

If you don’t want rusty wedges in your golf bag, opt for plated wedges instead.

Is rust a factor in distance?

No, grab a launch monitor and you’ll see that total distance doesn’t change from rusty wedges to a new raw wedge.

What wedges should i play? 

Matching your wedges to your irons is one the most important things you could do. While you don’t need to play the exact same club for all wedges and irons, you should match the type of iron.

You should use a similar wedge if you are playing graphite shaft, cavity-back irons, or both. You should not sacrifice lightweight irons to play heavy, difficult to hit wedges. This makes it difficult for you to hit your clubs consistently and transition clubs well.

For better players, you should choose less forgiving wedges such as the Titleist Vokey or Callaway Jaws. Higher handicappers should consider more forgiving options, such as the Cleveland RTX wedges. 

Click here to view the best wedges designed for high handicappers

Final Thoughts About Wedge Rust

As much as it pains me to type this, rust doesn’t improve spin. My 14-year-old self couldn’t outsmart the Golf Gods after all. It can spin for longer periods of time and keep your wedges sharper over time. 

While it won’t add any extra juice to your wedge shots, more and more companies are making wedges that intentionally rust. While it’s only the face surface, not the rest of the clubhead, it’s not to add more spin. New clubs spin lots of music because the grooves are so sharp.

The anti-glare features of some new wedges are better suited to the raw finish. There’s nothing worse than looking down at a wedge and barely able to focus on the golf ball because of a nasty glare. The raw finish is a great option if you live in a warm location and don’t want to battle the sun every round.

Don’t forget, the key to creating more spin with wedges is with proper contact and mechanics. Speed equals speed with full swing shots. Fresh grooves also help. For more friction, softer feel and extra spin, replace your wedges more often.