Copy of Bens Peak History Thread

Elephark did some searching for me and found where Paul sold the “c-foam” Peak for “pdaigle” on YYN’s BST forum:,9897.msg96117.html#msg96117 I’m not sure if “pdaigle” is Vincent, but you can see a few posts down Chris, having just learned his “c-foam” is hitting the open market posts, “Where did you get the Peak? From Vincent? I miss it…”

“pdaigle” but the “c-foam” Peak on eBay to maximize the profit from the sale of it. Looks like “cluelessyoer” won the auction for $220 or more. Paul had posted pictures of the “c-foam” Peak in that thread, but they are now missing. Luckily Elephark made back up of the pictures and sent them to me (huge thanks). Here is the “c-foam” white with teal logo Peak, with “c-foam” missing as it had been rubbed off from play, and also the chips from Chris testing the finish by bouncing it on the floor:

Around this time the white with winter green logo OG Peak numbered “boyd” was made. Boyd used it in Save Deth Vol. 1, but it got lost/stolen in late 2007 / early 2008. Another huge thanks to Elephark for supplying me with a rare picture of it:

On November 18th, 2006 Chris showed pictures for what would become the Levi painted Plaid Peak, numbered “eh!”. It is the first Levi paint job to not be a flat color or a “production release standard”. This was truly a custom… the first custom. Chris still owns it. Do not let this fool you. There were several other “plaid” Peaks sold, one even under the name of “Oh Canada Eh!", but those were all part of the “eBay” Peaks (more on that later) and were sold in the back half of 2008, making them 2nd run Peaks.

50 Levi Painted Numbered “OG” Peaks!
So “Hoodride”, “Solid Gold Dancer”, 2 black anodized, white with teal logo “gsimian”, the white with teal logo “c-foam”, the white with winter green logo “boyd”, and “eh!” are done… then 50 got numbered and painted by Levi. These were all done in the white base with blue mountain “production release standard”. They were numbered 1 through 50. There were some special exceptions in this run. #50 was the only numbered Peak to have the mountains painted pink instead of blue. This was at the request of “Amerprise” but ended up going to “girlsyo2”. Also one of the numbered Peaks (number unknown) had the inside of its hub airbrushed blue much like Blue proto Peak 0002.

YYN only got 47 to sell. They did not get #1 as Levi held that one back for himself and still owns it. They did not get pink #50 as that was sold directly. One (number unknown) was held back because it had major vibe. Paul kept this and it is believed to have ended up in the National Yo-Yo Musuem in Chico, CA. YYN did receive the one with the blue airbrushed inner hubs. This was “picked out” by and sold to RAN, who has one of the nicest and largest collections of Levi painted Peaks. I assume he got a bit of special treatment from YYN and got hooked up with this special “OG” Peak. Interestingly Chris did not have a numbered held back from this run and ended up buying “OG” Peak #6 off BST at a later time.

There were other “production release standard” Levi painted mountain theme Peaks to come out of that first batch of 1st run peaks that do not have a number but are “OG” nonetheless:

  • Pink mountain theme painted numbered “David” – much like OG #50, made specifically for David W.
  • Pink mountain theme painted numbered “pekka” – much like OG #50, made specifically for pekka.

Therefore in my opinion “OG” Peak should only refer to the 50 numbered painteds, plus “gsimian”, “c-foam”, Boyd’s now lost “boyd”, “David”, and “pekka”, i.e. 1st batch / 1st run Peaks that were painted by Levi to “production release standards”. While being 1st batch / 1st run, Chris’ plaid painted “eh!” is not an “OG”. It is the first custom painted. And “Hoodride”, “Solid Gold Dancer”, and the 2 black anodized are not “OG” as they are not painted. They are pre-“OG” 1st batch / 1st run.

Mint OGs are very rare these days. I actually only know of 2 mint OGs, and both have traded hands in the past 18 months (one in mid-2009, the other in 2010) for in excess of $500 cash or cash and trade. That picture above of all 50 still mint… that’s about $25,000 in yoyos in today’s market. Of course if all 50 were still mint, they’d probably sell for more like $300 a piece, which is what chipped up OGs are bringing these days.

10/12/2006 Chris picks up the first production batch (1st batch / 1st run) Peaks from the machine shop. These go on to become the 50 numbered, painted Peaks, the pre-“OG” Peaks referenced above, and eventually the Pioneer test ano Peaks.,3358.msg45770.html#msg45770

11/19/2006 Chris picks them up from Levi. Time to silicone and pack.,5163.0.html
1:56PM CST YYN announces the first publicly available Peaks, the original numbered/painted (of which YYN had 47), would launch later that day. YYN servers see heavy traffic for the next several hours as people camped out on the store, constantly refreshing. The store and forum were slowed, but the servers did handle the load.
8:32PM CST “weber” apologizes for the Peak having been up accidentally for a second. Unknown if any were sold during that time.
8:54PM CST The Peak officially hit the store.
8:58PM CST There are 26 remaining.
9:03PM CST there are 5 remaining and those sold within the next minute.

And with that the first run of publicly available Peaks sold out in 10 minutes…

Pioneer Ano Test Finishes
With the 20 or so raws that were left over from the 1st batch of the 1st run; Chris sold many of these raw (sold 1 of 4 “leftover” raw 1st runs on eBay on 6/12/2007:,10574.0.html not sure if Chris sold just 1 of the 4 or eventually sold all 4 on eBay, said “Each Peak sold on eBay by me comes with a surprise” making me think there were 4 auctions, one for each of the 4 leftover 1st run, 1st batch Peaks), gave some to Levi to paint, one became the red anodized Peak, and held 8 back that went on to get anodized by Pioneer. These 8 1st batch / 1st run Pioneer anodized Peaks went on to have a historical importance and collectability about them on par with the prototype Peaks.

Note: The only CUSTOM Levi painted 1st run Peak I’ve seen is Chris’ plaid “eh!” Peak. Yes, all “OG” “production release standard” painted Peaks are 1st run Peaks, but they are not CUSTOM painteds. The Levi painted “eBay” custom painted Peaks started on 6/3/2008:,28418.0.html meaning that all these Peaks were 2nd run Peaks (more on that later). Even RAN’s collection of custom commissioned Peaks were not announced by him until 10/17/2008:,36543.msg406856.html#msg406856 making them 2nd run Peaks as well. If you own a Levi custom commissioned painted Peak that you believe is from pre-2008, check here to see if it is a 1st run:,73907.0.html If so make a post about it so I can update this history as you have something special that just got more special.

So 8 raws were selected to have Pioneer put sample anodized finishes put on them. 4 colourways were selected and Chris had them done up in pairs.

This picture has 5 of the 8:

Missing from the picture is the second all electric green splash, the second green/blue acid wash, and the second black/blue acid wash.

I am proud to own 3 of the 8 Pioneer test anos, the lightly splashed Team Edition, the black/blue acid wash pictured above, and what has become known as the “Boyd” Peak.

My Pioneer Test Ano Peaks:

History of the 8 known Pioneer Test Ano Peaks:

  • Team Edition brown with electric blue splash, lightly splashed – owned by me
  • Team Edition brown with electric blue splash, heavily splashed – owned by Chris
  • Brown with electric green splash – owned by Sebby
  • Black/blue acid wash with proto Slip Matte finish – owned by me
  • Green/blue acid wash – owned by Elephark
  • Green/blue acid wash – given by Chris to his (old) boss, who supported Chris in starting CLYW, resides in Houston
  • “Boyd” Peak, half black/blue wash with proto Slip Matte finish, half brown with electric green splash – owned by me
  • “Alex” Peak, half black/blue wash with proto Slip Matte finish, half brown with electric green splash – owned by CLYW Team member “alexx”

1st Run / 2nd Batch!!! (1st Shop)
It was nearly a year before Chris tapped this 1st machine shop for a 2nd batch of Peaks. Chris was not happy with the quality of the 1st run 1st batch Peaks. The “Peak vibe” was now a community standard term. Chris had already found a new machine shop (which will be later referred to as 2nd Shop) which he and Boyd were keeping busy with the Bear Vs. Man formally announced on 2/27/2007:,7400.0.html

The early Bear Vs Mans were anodized by Pioneer after the successful experimentations on the Peaks. Look at early CLYWs here: My trained eye can visually tell apart a Pioneer ano finish from a Gruntbull ano finish (Gruntbull is the company CLYW would move to after they outgrew Pioneer and they are still with today). Pioneer used a cheaper dye which allowed colors to bleed into one another. This is why the Pioneer 28 Stories colourway used on the 1st run Peaks and the BvM has never been properly reproduced by Gruntbull on the 2nd run 28S Peaks or any other of the various CLYW yoyos to have had a 28S release. Look at the early BvMs and see how the splash is thicker in some places and so thin you can see the base color through it in others. This is especially noticeable on the 2nd Run BvM and the Wolverine BvM. Whereas I very much like this “look” from an artistic standpoint, from a quality standpoint this is cheap and undesirable, thus the move from Pioneer to Gruntbull at a later time.

Chris simply could not get this new (2nd Shop) that was producing the BvM in large quantities to make a Peak to his standards. Thus winter 2006 through fall 2007 became Peak drought #1. Everyone wanted Peak and counting EVERYTHING there were literally about 70 – 90 Peaks in existence, only 47 of which had seen a public release and could be said to be “in circulation” and “in circulation” in this case meant, “over my dead body or $300+”.

Chris finally broke down and in the fall of 2007 he ordered up another batch of Peaks from the 1st shop, which are the 1st run, 2nd batch Peaks. Chris recalls this being an order of 50, “maybe 60… I’d have to dig through a lot of emails which I think are all gone.” These all went to Pioneer to be anodized in the now famous 28 Stories colourway. (PS. “color” is American, “colour” is Canadian. As this is the history of a Canadian company and yoyo, this author chooses to use the spelling “colourway”).

Chris says, “Most sold at the Royal Bison, about 20, and the rest went to private sales and contests.” Unfortunately this 1st run, 2nd batch was known to have even more of a “Peak vibe” than the 1st run, 1st batch, so if “Peak vibe” had not become a mainstream term after the “OG” Peaks, it sure was after the 28S Peaks. This 1st run, 2nd batch had major quality control issues, such that almost every other half produced had an undesired flat nipple/spike. Chris tried his best to hand match 28 Stories Peaks such that each Peak contained a pointy nipple half and a flat nipple half. I happen to own a rare “double pointy nipple” 28S Peak which was hand matched by Chris for maximum smoothness.

And with that 2nd batch, the era of the 1st run Peak and the 1st Shop was over. It was still over another year before the 2nd shop was able to produce Peaks. Thus fall 2007 through early 2009 became Peak drought #2. “OG” occurred in 2006. 28S was 2007. 2008 only saw Levi painted “eBay” Peaks.

This photo contains most all the Peaks Chris ended up keeping:

On top is a 28 Stories.
Middle row contains the heavy splash Team Edition Peaks and the first Levi custom painted Plaid “eh!” Peak.
Bottom row contain red anodized and Levi painted proto Peak 0001, Blue proto Peak 0002, and Hoodride.