How to Choose a Yo-yo - Looking at Axles (wood/metal/bearing)

About: Video clips are produced by yo-yo performer Luke Renner. Compilations represent over 18 years of performance experience from the streets of Berlin to the coasts of California. Currently in production is a se...

Primary yo-yos used in the demonstration by Luke Renner were created by:  Russell, Playmaxx, Tom Kuhn, Monarch and includes a generic red and yellow plastic yo-yo. Footage filmed by Andrew Gomez in Northwest New Mexico 12/30/09. Yo-yo topic covered in this instructional video is the different types of axles found in yo-yos. The three covered are wood, metal and ball bearing axles.  This is the first of a two part series.  Part two will be released later in 2010. Music is a public domain jazz loop by Florian.



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    2 Discussions


    9 years ago on Introduction

    In the UK, the ball-bearing axles get called trans-axles.  The other two you mention get called fixed.

    What about yo-yos with clutches?

    1 reply


      Thanks for the post.  The same goes in the US regarding the fixed axle yo-yo these are typically wood or metal.  The trans-axles refer to a group of yo-yos that consist of a plastic tube that wrapped around the axle and have a little better sleeping time than a fixed axle yo-yo. 

    Duncan and a few other companies had trans-axles in production for awhile the Duncan trans-axle was sold as the Duncan Trans-Action.     I'm not sure if these are still on the market.  I have them in my collection but don't use them on too many occasions.

    Bearings are a group by themselves.  These came out with the SB2 Silver Bullet 2 created by Dr. Tom Kuhn.  There may be a few earlier patents for bearings but the SB2 is the design that hit the market first.  The  SB1 was a metal yo-yo with a wooden fixed axle.

    Clutches.... This is the first video of two and I debated on adding clutches in this video.  Yomega came out with the "Yo-yo with a Brain" (c) in 1984.  These use a centrifugal clutch that causes the yo-yo to pop back as the speed diminishes.  The clutch has been since copied along with the bearing concept by quite a few companies.  The clutch may have some clever applications for performers using the auto-return action and incoporating stands into the routine.  Scott Musgrave discusses this trick application in "It's Yo-Yo Time! Professor Yo-Yo's Book of Yo-Yo Tricks, Tips and Stories New and Old".  The book is a compilation of over 350 tricks from the Yo-Yo Times Newsletter by editor Stuart F. Crump Jr.

      Thanks again for the feedback.  I'll look at incorporating this information into future videos.  I'm still experimenting with the look and feel for the online videos. 


      - Luke Renner