The Best 3 Iron — (Our Golf Instructor's Advice)
As the head of the Golf Instructor team at Tell Me More Golf, I’m making sure you make the most informed buying decision; getting you the Best 3 Iron that we can!
These expert review guidelines are used by Tell Me More Golf’s review team:
To find the best 3 iron for this year and beyond, our review team mainly looked at the club’s distance, forgiveness, feel, and workability.
The TaylorMade Stealth UDI 3 Iron is our top pick for multiple reasons. Just like the rest of the stealth line-up, this club delivers outstanding distances, even on off-center hits, meaning that you’ll have an easier time hitting the green on those long second shots on par 4s and 5s.
For a 3 iron that also offers plenty of workability, we found the Stealth UDI to be very forgiving across the entire face. To top it off, the feel and sound are truly best-in-class delivering a satisfying “click” sound and a soft feel on many different strikes.
The only problem we found with this club was the somewhat limited improvements from the SIM predecessor regarding distance and other numbers. However, we really enjoyed the new aesthetic and more confidence-inspiring looks.
- Outstanding distances
- Very forgiving for a normal 3 iron
- Fantastic feel and sound
- Limited gains numbers-wise from the SIM predecessor
Buying individual golf clubs like a 3 iron can be quite pricey, which is why we dedicated one of our top picks to a very high-performing club that is available at a fair price.
The Srixon ZX 3 Iron delivers a great combination of performance, looks, and affordability. This 3 iron is very long-hitting – making it suitable for tee shots on par 4s and transport shots on par 5s. We also found it to be very forgiving, despite the quite thin and blade-like design. Lastly, the feel and sound are great, with a powerful sensation after a well-struck shot.
While the design is undoubtedly stylish, the thin looks may not be the most confidence-inspiring out there.
- Great feel and sound
- Very affordable
- Blade-like design is not for everyone
Forgiveness is essential in all types of golf clubs, but since 3 irons are especially challenging to hit, it becomes extra crucial. When searching for the 3 irons with the most forgiveness, we mainly looked for a tight dispersion on many types of strikes.
The Ping G425 Crossover Hybrid 3 Iron combines a hybrid and iron design – enabling maximum forgiveness while retaining feel and workability. This crossover 3 iron also delivers impressive distances, which combined with the immense forgiveness, makes it very enjoyable to use out on the golf course, as you’ll hit both long and straight shots.
With that said, crossover irons like this, despite the updated and thinner than before design, are not for everyone.
- Crossover design is highly forgiving
- Great feel and workability, especially for a crossover club
- Impressive distances
- Crossover design doesn’t suit everyone’s eye
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One of the main reasons for using a 3 iron is distance since it’s one of the longest hitting clubs in the bag. To find the longest 3 irons our review team hit multiple shots and averaged out the results.
The Wilson Staff Model 3 Iron uses a pleasing and traditional iron design that through extra weighting makes it easy to launch the ball high. This, combined with the explosive ball speeds, makes the club very long-hitting. The ball flight is penetrating and workable – making the club great for tighter golf holes and windy conditions. It’s also forgiving and has a satisfying feel from both the turf and a tee.
As mentioned, the Wilson Staff Model uses a traditional design that is relatively thin. This looks great, but isn’t ideal for golfers who aren’t confident with their longer irons.
- High launch and ball speed
- Penetrating ball flight with plenty of workability
- Satisfying feel
- Thin design can cause lack of confidence
Feel is another vital component in a great 3 iron, since it lets you know when you’ve hit a good shot and makes you more comfortable out on the golf course. For 3 irons, we mainly looked for a confidence-inspiring soft feel.
The Titleist U505 Utility 3 Iron is also a crossover between a hybrid and long iron. It uses a large head that is very confidence-inspiring, and has an offset that makes it forgiving for golfers that tend to miss to the right.
The wide sole makes it easy for the club to slide over the turf – making it great out on the golf course. Other than that, the distances are top-of-the-line, and the feel and sound are just as great as you would expect from any Titleist club.
The Titleist U505 3 iron is truly an oversized golf club, and almost looks more like a hybrid than an iron. This is great for forgiveness, but the looks aren’t for everyone.
- Oversized crossover design is extremely forgiving
- Wide sole makes it easy to hit off grass
- Great distances and feel
- Hybrid-like design isn’t for everyone
What Makes the Best 3 Iron? – Our Buyer’s Guide
The Crucial Traits of a Great 3 Iron
Golf irons are typically used on tee shots on par 3s, or hitting into greens on longer holes. The 3 iron is one of the longest-hitting clubs in the bag, which is why maximizing your distance with it is crucial. Because it’s an iron, the 3 iron can put enough spin on the golf ball to stop it on the green – making birdie and eagle putts more common.
All levels of golfers struggle with poorly struck shots, since the sweet spot is relatively small and the golf swing is challenging to replicate perfectly. Because the 3 iron has a low loft, forgiveness is extra necessary. The most forgiving 3 irons use a hybrid crossover design which resembles many fairway woods.
Great feel is essential for two reasons: it makes golf more enjoyable and enables you to work on your game. A well-struck shot should feel rewarding, while a poorer one should let you know where the shot was struck in order for you to keep that from happening again.
Which 3 Iron Suits You the Best?
- Swing Speed
One of the most significant factors for choosing any golf club is your swing speed, and more specifically your clubhead speed. This is especially the case for lower lofted clubs like the 3 iron, and slower swingers should consider a graphite shaft, while faster swingers should most likely stick with steel.
Almost all golfers struggle with a miss either to the right or the left, which is why your golf equipment should combat it. The correct lie angle can help fix this, but more drastic measures like using an offset or toe weighting can also be very beneficial.
Why a 3 Iron Will Change Your Game
The 3 iron offers a combination of accuracy, distance, and workability. It’s the perfect club for many situations, including tight tee shots or long shots into greens. The right 3 iron will enable you to hit more greens in regulations and keep the ball in play on challenging holes – both playing a significant factor in dropping your score.
Tell Me More Golf – Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best 3 iron?
When reviewing the best driving irons, we found that the TaylorMade Stealth UDI 3 Iron had the best all-around performance, both when it comes to distance and forgiveness.
What is the best 3 iron for high handicappers?
High handicap golfers should usually buy forgiving clubs, which is especially the case for the challenging 3 iron. The Ping G425 Crossover utility iron is very versatile and offers maximum forgiveness on all types of shots.
Should I buy a 3 iron?
Investing in a quality 3 iron can be an excellent decision, as it’s one of the best clubs for tight par 4s and par 5s. Having a club for longer shots into greens will also enable you to play your best golf, since you’ll hit more greens in regulations and have more birdie, or even eagle, opportunities.
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The 3 iron is a great golf club with plenty of versatility, and in this article, we’ve shown our top 5 picks for the best 3 irons out there. All clubs featured on this list are fantastic, but they’re targeted at different players. Hopefully, you now know which suits you the best. Thank you for reading!