Duncan Freehand Pro Review

I usually don’t do yoyo reviews. At least online so to speak. However due to this yoyo only being available from a certain site, I have a feeling that this yoyo may not be in the hands of most people, so I wanted to share of glimpse of my thoughts to the market before it becomes available for purchase from yoyoexpert. Because trust me when this yoyo becomes available, SPOILER! you’re going to want it.

So now the specs
Weight63.9 grams (With Stock Caps)

And here is a photo!

First Impression (Before Purchase)
When I first saw this yoyo on Duncan Toy’s instagram, I was extremely overjoyed that this yoyo uses FHZ caps. To me a freehand is not a true freehand unless its sporting those classic FHZ caps. (I’m looking at YOU Metal Zero!) Which brings up another pre-purchase thought. The FHZ was the second trick oriented yoyo I have ever bought. (The first being a FAST 201). And therefore I hold alot of respect and nostalgia for the FHZ. Due to the following addition to the Freehand line being… lackluster, I was happy to see that the Freehand Pro gave the series a rejuvenated and promising continuation.
You may disagree that the series was great, but I was not fond of the metal zero nor metal drifter, the MG was never in my price range and neither was the AL, for simply a metal FHZ.
Next Pre-production thought was the color. Simply because white is my all time favorite color and I am doomed to never have a metal yoyo in my favorite colour. Curse you, science. So I always buy up plastics in white and was stoked to see this one in white. So, its to say that I was a little disappointing when the 1st run production color was red :(Oh well.
Last pre-purchase thought was the shape. The Freehand line up (excluding the FH1) is all marked by its iconic organic rounded butterfly shape. And whenever any sort of close to heart series makes changes, its bound to cause some controversy. Just look at Star Wars Episode VII and you’ll see my point. The Freehand Pro and Freehand line is no exception. The Freehand Pro, which I will now abbreviate as FHP from now on, takes its shape from the Barracuda, signature of 5a legend and one of my favorite players; Raphael Matsunaga. Now, prior to purchase of the FHP I did own a Barracuda. Convenient, yes? And I LOVED the Barracuda. So when seeing the FHP take inspiration from the Barracuda, I was this

First Impression (Upon Purchase)
On first opening the yoyo I was very pleased to see that Duncan stocks this yoyo with a KonKave Bearing. I am a firm believer that Plastics play 100x times better with a concave bearing versus a flat and I am happy to see that Duncan went with quality and performance rather than cheaping out. It may be purely psychological that I think that plastics don’t perform well with flats, but its my belief.

First Throw 1A
Although I bought this yoyo for the purpose of 5a, I wanted to see how it performed with 1A before slapping a counterweight on it. My first thought when I threw the FHP was PROTOSTAR This thig plays very similar to that of a Protostar; and in all honesty, I am not surprised. Just take a look at the profile comparisons
http://i.imgur.com/Yshsv5j.png http://i.imgur.com/X1bT5Qw.jpg
…sorry they are a bit different in size… But you get my point.
Now, how did I react to to it playing like a protostar? I was ecstatic! Up until the FHP, the Protostar was my alltime favorite plastic yoyo. And I have played and owned alot of plastic yoyos. I have owned a protostar, northstar, onestar, replay pro, regen, diffusion 2, first base, SEVERE you name it, and the protostar wins my heart. Now they aren’t identical. I’ll point that out now. The protostar is slightly faster, but the FHP beats the Protostar on spin time. Pick your poison.

First Throw 5A
Now is crunch time. How does this yoyo play with a CW. To sum it up in one word; breathtaking. The first thing that came to mine when I did a beesting on it was; BARRACUDA. This yoyo flourishes with %A play. It just so perfectly balances itself and the counterweight it makes everything so easy and smooth and YES! Its hard to put it into words so I’ll go through my 5A experience and hopefully that’ll shed some light. So in my experience I have used a protostar, torque, barracuda, and now FHP for 5A play. Since I was originally talking about the Protostar, I’ll start with that. For some reason the Protostar just didnt click with me for 5A. It was great for 1a but ehhh for 5a. The torque was the opposite, it was great for 5A and I learned and progressed alot with the torque. But the torque was so flat and stoic with 1A that I hated using it if it wasnt for 5A. The Barracuda was the best performing 5a yoyo I had used. But as a beginner 5a player at the time, I was unnerved to use a $100 yoyo for 5a. Especially because I was so prone to dropping it when learning meltdown and 1 handed pinwheel. So even though I loved the barracuda for 5a, my insecurities about my skill prevented me from enjoying it. The FHP is literally the answer I have been looking for. It has that great plastic fun feel to it, it plays like the barracuda when doing 5a, and its also a great 1A yoyo. I couldn’t be happier!

First throw with weight rings
Now as you can see from my photos, I put the Duncan Performance Rings in my FHP. And If I wasn’t awh struck before, I am now. The FHP plays even more amazing with the rings. For 1A, it slows down the speed of the yoyo a little bit, not its not very noticeable. Speed combos are still just as easy and fluent. But you do get a major increase in spin time. For 5a, the rings definitely help balance the yoyo and the counterweight. Tricks like rock and roll that really require the yoyo and the CW to be in harmony are made easier by including the rings. I have yet to take them out.

So wrapping up, this yoyo is amazing! Kudos to Duncan to making such an amazing plastic yoyo and really sparking life back into the Freehand line. When this yoyo comes to YYE you’re gonna want to buy it up. Trust me. This yoyo plays great and is a joy to use.
PS. I wrote this while playing Runescape, so forgive any grammar errors. And if you play Old School RS, Add me, my Username is Socrates399.

Good review. But what are FHZ caps?

Fhz caps are the side caps that go on freehand zero’s. Fhz is an abbreviation for freehand zero.

I didn’t see it on yoyoexpert.
Do they still sell it?

you right, I want one

Not yet. But they should soon.