Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft Review – Specs, Flex, Weight

Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft

From our experience testing Oban shafts, it would seem that the company tries to make shafts that have wide appeal.

Many of their shafts can be described as “middle of the road.” And that may sound like a knock against the company but it’s really a testament to the accessible, easy-to-swing nature of most of their shafts.

Today, we are not highlighting a shaft that anyone would describe as “middle of the road.” The Oban Kiyoshi Black is a shaft that was obviously built for a specific kind of player.

There are no two ways about it. Read on to find out who the Oban Kiyoshi Black could benefit the most.

Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft Overview

For my money, the Oban Kiyoshi Black is the best-looking shaft in the Kiyoshi line.

And what I really mean by that is that the colors and graphics are toned down. The base coat is black with gold bands near the grip that contain the Oban lettering and some Japanese characters.

Closer to the grip are the kabuki mask faces that adorn all the Kiyoshi shafts. Despite the kabuki faces, I like the understated look of this shaft.

The highest torque rating for the Oban Kiyoshi Black shaft is 3.9° – and that’s for the lightest version of this shaft so you can imagine how firm it gets in the heaviest version.

Yes, the Oban Kiyoshi Black is a stout shaft, no ifs ands or buts about it. And it was really hard for our testing party to determine any kick point unless we were swinging out of our shoes.

But it is there, it is subtle and it dwells in the high midsection area. The butt feels incredibly stout with just a little more give in the tip section.

One thing that really surprised us about the feel of this shaft is that even though it’s very stout, we never got shocks up our arms on mis-hits.

This is something we only noticed after conferring with one another after the test session. There is very little give in this shaft but it somehow manages to smooth out vibrations on errant strikes.

Why is the Oban Kiyoshi Black So Popular?

Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft1

The Oban Kiyoshi Black is a popular choice among heavy hitters because it is incredibly stable.

This shaft can ably keep up with your 100+ MPH swing and offer you the stable flight you need.

How Does the Oban Kiyoshi Black Perform?

In short: very well if you are a strong swinger.

The Oban Kiyoshi Black is advertised as a low/mid launch and low/mid spin shaft. And as is the case with  many Oban shafts, I find this description to be misleading.

From our test session results, I would label this shaft as a low spin shaft; but the mid/low launch description seems accurate.

For the most part, our spin numbers stayed in the 2100-2200 RPM region. These were great numbers for our testing party which was made up entirely of 95+ MPH swingers.

It made for very good carry and excellent overall distance. Basically, this is the shaft you want in your driver as a powerful swinger when you’re facing down a long par 5.

Our launch angles were hovering in the 13-16 degree range so again, we would classify this as mid/low launch.

It was low enough to stay out of the wind but high enough for us to affect some really nice fades and draws.

Divergence wasn’t as tight as we were expecting but that could have more to do with our unfamiliarity with this shaft than anything else.

And after all, the divergence was still objectively tight: no more than 16 yards for our session.

Shaft Specs

Specs Oban Kiyoshi Black
Available flexes Amateur, Regular, Stiff, Extra stiff
Weight 56g-87g
Butt .600”
Tip .335
Length 46”

What Flexes Are Available? What Swing Speeds Do They Suit?

Even at amateur flex, you still need a 90+ MPH swing.

Regular may suit 95-100 MPH swingers. Stiff is for 101-105 MPH swingers and extra stiff may suit 105-115 MPH swingers.

What Weights Are Available? What Swing Speeds Do They Suit?

We would recommend the Oban Kiyoshi Black 55 for 90-95 MPH swingers.

The Oban Kiyoshi Black 65 is for players in the 96-100 MPH range.

The Oban Kiyoshi Black 75 would work for players on the 101-105 MPH spectrum and the Oban Kiyoshi Black 85 is likely only for 106+ MPH swingers.

Why is it So Good?

Again, the Oban Kiyoshi Black is a good shaft for the right kind of player.

The best thing about it for fast swing speed players is that it’s incredibly stable. It resists ovalling and there is no “whip” even on tremendous loads.

Oban Kiyoshi Black First Impressions

Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft2

The first thing I noticed about this shaft was how stout it feels.

For my swing speed (96 MPH on average) it feels a bit lifeless but it is incredibly accurate.

Key Features & Performance

The Kiyoshi Black uses Oban’s Emersion Wrapped Frequency technology that helps stiffen the butt section to achieve low spin rates but still, middling ball flight.

Oban Kiyoshi Black Driver Review

Our testers were able to average a carry distance of 261.1 yards after three swings with this shaft.

For fast swingers, this is one of the longest Oban shafts available.

Oban Kiyoshi Black Fairway Wood Review

There wasn’t enough workability with fairway woods for our liking.

It’s more or less a point-and-shoot shaft which is fine from the box; but can be limiting off the deck.

Oban Kiyoshi Black Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • Extremely stable
  • Great for fast swing speeds
  • No harsh vibrations
  • Low spin
  • Mid launch

Cons:

  • Limited workability

Oban Kiyoshi Black Shaft

Overall Score: 96/100

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Who Should Buy it?

We wouldn’t recommend this shaft to anyone swinging their woods less than 90 MPH.

The Oban Kiyoshi Black is clearly for heavy hitters that want the club head to stay where they want it on the most powerful swings.

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