How To Strip and Polish a Metal YoYo


Alright, so I am very bored and thought I would post this guide, for anyone hoping to strip the annodize of of there yoyos, or just fix beat up ones.

What you need:
Electric Drill(Try to get the fastest spinning one you can)
80-100 Grit Sandpaper
120-150 Grit sandpaper Wet sandpaper will help, it is not normal SP, so check your package
200-250 grit sandpaper
0000 Super Fine Steel Wool
3M Scratch Remover
Mothers Mag & Aluminum Polish
Some Old rags, or paper towel if you have none.
A screw to fit your yoyos axle hole(This isn’t necessary, just helpful)

                                               [b]      Setup[/b]

Start by getting an electric drill, and try to get one above 1000 rpm’s, which shouldn’t be hard. Take the screw you have found and tighten it into the yoyo, then tighten the chuck onto the other end as tight as possible. If you could not find a fitting axle replacement screw, wrap some duct tape aroound the axle, and don’t tighten the chuck too much (This is to prevent stripping the axle). Now that the yoyo is attached to the drill, spin the drill and check if there is a lot of wobble, and make sure it is spinning counter-clockwise so the yoyo will not unscrew and fall off if you push too hard while sanding.

                                              [b]      Rims[/b]

  Everything is ready to begin now. Take the lowest grit SP you have, and turn the drill on. Fold the SP, and push it against the rims of the yoyo. You will notice the outer edge will rub off much faster than the actual flat part of the rim. Just be patient, and keep rubbing the SP in an up and down motion as the yoyo is still spinning. This should take no more than 5 Minutes, just keep pushing, but don't push as hard as you can. With a yoyo such as an Avalanche, you will have that little ring where you cant really sand with the flat SP. So now, take the folded sandpaper, and push the crease into the crack that has not been successfully stripped

                                               [b]     Catch Zone[/b]

Now to the center of the body. I have found this is easiest if you take a Piece, about 4 in. by 4in. and fold it in half. Take the flat side(Not the crease) and put your index finger near the top of it. Once you put this on the yoyo, your index finger should be just above the response. This helps sand that area too from the pressure, but not ruin your response. Make sure you are pushing with your index right near the response, but also using the bottom of your fingers to apply pressure everywhere else that the anodize is still visible. Once again, do an up and down motion, but there is no need to go into the rims that should already have been stripped.

                                                      [b]Cup Area  [/b]

  If you are wanting to strip the cup, you need to be brave. This is not really necessary unless you are doing this for looks, and not to remove scratches and dings. Start this by getting a big pice of SP and folding it. After folding, it should still be big enough to almost cover the cup area. Push it into the cup, and try to pinch the rims a bit. Once the ano is off the inner rims, move to the flat part. For this just use the same piece but push down onto the flat part of the inner cup. When you have done this for a few minutes, while still moving your hand up and down like earlier, you will still have a few lines most likely. For these, you will take a small piece, and fold it up. Push the crease onto those lines, just like earlier. This can be very time consuming, but it will look much better. It will go much faster getting those lines if you use wet sandpaper. If your yoyo is the type that has a little area under the rim, you will need to get that too. To do that, fold a small piece of SP(It can be the same you just used if you didn't use it too much) and push it into that area. Hold it steady, and turn on the drill. Remember, you can't see well into that area, so it doe snot need to be completely gone, although a red or orange anodize might be obvious.

                                                     [b]Home Stretch [/b]

Now check the yoyo, making sure there are no areas or lines of color showing through. If there are, go back push a crease on that area just as you have been doing to lines, if there aren’t, proceed. Go over the body with the next grit up you have (100-150). Keep in mind this shouldn’t take long because it is already stripped, so you just need to take the scratches from the first time you sanded and make them smaller. Cover the body, then go into the cup and do everything as you did the first time. After this, do it AGAIN, but with the 150-200 grit SP. This should make it look pretty good, but we still have to polish, and go over with steel wool. If you feel so inclined, you could get higher Grits and keep going. Take a pad of the 0000 grade steel wool, and rub it up and down the yoyo for a few seconds while the drill is spinning. Be sure to do it in the cup as well.

                                                    [b]Removing small scratches[/b]

    Put a dime sized amount of 3M Scratch Remover onto the rag/cloth you have. Turn on the drill starting very slow (If you start fast it will splatter everywhere), and put your finger under the rag where the 3M is. Now push towards the center of the yoyo, and just mover to the rim. If it is covered, just start going up and down like with SP, but with the cloth. Once it turns black on the yoyo, wait for about 3 minutes. Now take a clean cloth and rub it in an up and down motion, this should remove the 3M, and you should see the scratches blend together, making it look much better. For the cup, do the same thing with the same amount, but start in the middle and work it out to the rim. Once black, wait and rub it off. Repeat this on the cup and the catch zone 2-3 times.

                                             [b]        Polishing/Finsihing![/b]

  Now is when your work pays off, the final step. Just like with the 3M, put the cloth(Clean part) around your finger tight. Rub your finger into the can of Mothers Polish, and just get a little bit. Now do the exact same thing you did with the 3M, but you don't need to wait after it turns black. There is no point in repeating this more than twice. Since you are finishing now, make sure the yoyo is rubbed up very good, inside and out. There should be no residue of anything, anywhere. Loosen the chuck of the drill, and remove the yoyo with the axle/screw. Now, you have your finished project! Take the screw off the yoyo, but if you used the axle it is supposed to have, remove the duct tape. This might leave little things in the axle from the string in the tape, just get that out with a safety pin.

Remember, you have to do this to both halves.

If I was unclear about anything, please reply and I will edit it, and/or send you a pm to answer your question. Also thanks to yoyospirit for giving me a lot of advice while I was trying to make my polish jobs look better.

Useful modification & maintenance guides -- clean, repair, tune, fix yoyos
(2Sick Joey) #2

This would be really good if there were pics for every step :slight_smile: besides that its pretty good


There is already topics on how to polish aluminium ;).

There are also only 1 or 2 topics asking how to do it. They also do know how to do it they just want to know how to get the paper in the cracks.

Pictures would also be a bonus.


I am at my dads right now, but I plan on taking pics when I get home later tonight.


This should go in the Useful modification guides ;).


What I did was find a nut that fits the axle, like on the side of a fhz or one. Then put that on the axle, and then put it in the drill so the drill can grip it better.


Can I substitute the 3m for some scratch doctor?


Yup! I just looked it up. Any scratch remover will do. I dont even use 3M unless I am at my dads, my local store didnt have it.


Pics dingo, STICKY!!