This review of the Callaway Solaire all-in-one sets of women’s clubs has been difficult for me to write. It’s not that the clubs are hard to hit - far from it, in fact. They swing easy, have a nice balance, and are some of the most women-friendly clubs I’ve evaluated. It’s clear that Callaway designed them with women golfers in mind.
It’s just that I’ve heard some disturbing things about Callaway Solaire clubs. If you’ve read even a few of our golf club reviews, you’ve probably picked up on my overall positive perception of Callaway golf clubs. As a general rule, I like the way they hit, feel and look. And I can honestly say that’s true for Callaway Solaire clubs, too. But my positive impressions of these clubs are a little tinged by some things that I’ve heard. I’ll share what I’ve heard later, after I tell you about the clubs themselves.
Callaway Solaire clubs are sold as complete sets, in either 9-club or 14-club configurations. They are primarily geared at beginning and high-handicap women golfers and feature higher lofts, lighter grips, lighter club heads and lighter shafts than many other golf clubs. A draw bias is built in to help prevent slicing.
All these characteristics are intended to help women with slower swing speeds swing their clubs faster, launch the ball higher and hit their shots straighter and longer. And that’s all good.
The makeup of the 14-club Callaway Solaire set consists of a 13-degree titanium driver, 3 stainless steel fairway woods (3, 5 and 7), 3 easy-to-hit hybrids (5, 6 and 7), 2 cavity-back irons (8 and 9), 3 cavity-back wedges (PW, SW and AW), a center-shafted mid-mallet putter and a stylish but functional cart bag. Except for the putter, all the clubs have graphite shafts.
The 9-club Callaway Solaire set includes the same driver, putter and bag, but only one wood (5), two hybrids (6 and 7), one iron (8) and two wedges (PW and SW). This particular configuration could make an ideal “starter set” for lady golfers who are just taking up the game.
Because both sets are “all-in-one” sets, all the clubs are designed to work together, with the proper loft and distance gaps. Even the cart bag that’s included in the Callaway Solaire set is thoughtfully designed. It looks fashionable but it’s also practical, with a 10-way divider top, an insulated pocket for food and beverages, a removable accessories pouch, a compartment to store a pair of golf shoes, and plenty of other pockets for balls, valuables, rain gear and so forth.
By now, you’re probably thinking “This all sounds good – so what’s the problem with these clubs?” Well, here’s the rub. It pains me to say this, because (as I said earlier) I’ve always liked Callaway clubs. On an overall basis, I think they’re some of the best-made, best-hitting clubs you can buy. But I’ve seen and heard some disturbing reports about the quality of Callaway Solaire clubs.
Several women who bought these sets report that after hitting them for a few rounds, they’d swing a club and its head would fly off. I didn’t have this problem myself, but I only played the clubs for one round. If these reports are true (and I’m not saying they are, only that I’ve seen them), it indicates a disturbing issue with long-term quality. The heads of clubs shouldn’t fly off – ever – and especially not when you consider how slowly most female golfers swing. So, this potential problem is something I think you should be aware of while you’re shopping. Again, I didn’t experience the problem myself, but I’ve read several reports by women who have. I don’t know how believable those reports are, but I feel obligated to tell you I’ve seen them. I do know it’s not what I’ve come to expect from Callaway Golf.
The Bottom Line: Basically, I’m not sure what to think about the Callaway Solaire sets of women’s clubs. My experiences on the course were all good, and I felt like they were solid clubs that would be great for many women. But I can’t get those reports of flying heads out of my mind. All I can say is Callaway Golf is one of the top brands in the golf club industry, and its clubs are endorsed by no less than Arnie Palmer and Annika Sorenstam. In my experience, Callaway’s clubs have always been high in quality. I just don’t know whether to believe those disturbing reports. What I can say is this: if this set holds up over time, it could be a great choice for mid- to high-handicap lady golfers. It comes with everything you need to play except for your shoes, gloves, balls and tees.