An unofficial guide to identifying the new Duncan Butterflies

Hi all, there has been excitement surrounding the new Duncan Butterflies that are made with the updated mould. I feel this excitement is warranted because the new butterflies are great. They aren’t just great for the price, they are actually really great fixed-axle yoyos. I personally was not a fan of the previous Butterfly version, but I really like this new one.
These seem to have been rolling out gradually for the past little while, so you may find some in a store near you. I found mine in a small family owned toystore near me in Canada.

@bheinz63 and I have put together some observations and we are pretty confident that these are clear signs for spotting these new yoyos out in the wild. NOTE: These differences have not been confirmed by Duncan, these are just collective observations from the community. Also note that I’ve been told that any BFs found in the bargain bins at Target are likely to be the new ones.

First thing, the packaging should be copyrighted “2022”. THOUGH, mine came in a “2020” package and I have seen posts of several others (mainly the purple ones) packaged as “2020”. Also noted, @Sleeper80 documented an old-mould red BF that came in a “2022” package.

Here are some comparison photos of my new-mould blue butterfly compared to an old-mould green one that I purchased in 2018. The easiest tells for spotting in package are the subtle differences in the stamp, the clean and very glossy plastic, and the slightly-relieved edge of the cap. Once looking at the back, the rounded vs. sharp edged centre hub is also distinctive.





We hope that this helps with the hunt. I certainly had fun going out to look for one. PLEASE let us know if you find inconsistencies to our observations - our sample size is still pretty small.

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Cool. I think about grabbing an old one from time to time.

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Wow those old molds sure had a lot of flash left on them. Looks like they did a great job updating their tooling :blush:

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I completely agree, the old one felt pretty cheap to me, though the price was on par with this. The excess flash on this one always bothered me. This new one feels a lot more premium and solid. I dare say, it almost feels under-priced now?.. :face_with_hand_over_mouth:

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I’ve envisioned a Butterfly Collector’s thread and there was one in the past. As a resource I’ll put this thread link here for most of the historic models, more details can usually be found within the Fixed Axle Friday Throws thread on individual models. I’ve been trying to update the list as it grows, might need to become its own wiki.

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I caught a new mold butterfly with the old stamp. Had me confused for a bit!

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still looks like old mold my friend, around the edge of the body next to the cap is slightly raised ridge and not seeing the gap relief that would be on the edge near the mold divot under the text ‘world’s’…

The psychadelics show the little cap edge gap more easily where pink meets white under the awfhy code…

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Yes, are you sure it’s a new mound one? I can’t really tell based on the photo. What about the centre hub?

Its 100% a new one



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Thanks for clarifying, I agree! I appreciate you sharing this. As I tell my research students frequently, a rule is almost always accompanied by exceptions.

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Not sure if the photos prove my case, but going by the feel and sound of the plastic the difference is very apparent. Could be new plastic in the old mould?

Yeah the plastic is really nice, i have one of those orange ones myself in 2022 packaging. but you can see little differences in the plastic shape, those are good pics showing the little ridge around the inside edge of the body near the cap edge. That is missing on the new mold, its flatter.
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Also the axel end is not as flat… see the edge gap near the divot too


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Man, those differences are subtle! I do see them now though.
I totally assumed harder plastic meant new mould, maybe I just forgot what a fresh butterfly feels like :upside_down_face:

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Fact is the old mold still plays reliably, and always worth a throw anyway, i have a bunch of them too. Plenty moddable. Im looking for older ones now…

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Really? Is it heavier?

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Yes, the new ones are in the mid 50 gram range.

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The photos of the purple Butterfly on Amazon show the old mold. How would a buyer know which version they would get if they ordered a Butterfly from Amazon right now? I guess there would be no way of knowing, which is a bit annoying (though who but us hardcore yoyo nerds would even care?).

I saw the old mold pictures on Amazon too. I took the risk and the yo-you that arrived were the new mold. Seems Amazon just has old/wrong photos.