Mikers, I’ve also made the point that it’s strange Ed should have to do anything to his signature throw, so we are on the same page there. Be that as it may, it took less than 2 minutes to get my EH to play responsively. I can loop fine on it without that “lag” at the end of the string.
I do think that Colin would keep more fans if he would just make these things more responsive out of the box. However, if you ever watch his personal videos, it’s clear that he likes to push the limits of responsiveness… doing Black Hops on a fixed-axle throw isn’t going to work very easily with the kind of responsiveness you and I prefer. I don’t think he should saddle that preference on people, but…
Then again, we’re not saddled with it. Easier to shave a hair off an axle than add a spacer, yes?
Regarding wood choice, maple, oak, and mahogany are all hardwoods. It’s not like he’s making these things out of pine. I would like to see some more purpleheart, but its sawdust is toxic. Not saying you can’t work it, but maybe if he’s churning out yoyos he’s avoiding certain wood types. I’d have to ask. More likely, it’s the ready availability of the woods he normally uses.
Other woods like rosewood are controlled species now. I honestly have no complaints about his wood choices.
I don’t think they’re perfect, though. I believe there’s still an extra stage of fine sanding or finishing that could take place, but which would raise the price. I chose to pore-fill my Baldwin because it had an end-grain rough patch (not uncommon for circular cuts) that I thought was just a bit TOO rough and interfered with UFOs. Filled the pores with CA, sanded smooth. Almost did the same with my EH, but decided to play through it and eventually the string smoothed it out. The LoveJoy hasn’t needed any special attention.