Based on a few things I learned in my “break an aluminum yoyo” experiments…
It’s surprisingly difficult to seriously damage an aluminum yoyo. I had to throw it really hard into concrete, multiple times, to get it to majorly vibe. And even then it was still playable!
As far as affecting play, rim damage doesn’t matter at all (except if it cuts your hands, but you could buff that out), what matters is damage to the axle and bearing seats.
Plus my testing was with a plain old 6061 yoyo, not the stronger 7075 or 7068 aluminum variants… much less titanium, which is far stronger than all aluminum and even stronger than steel! Speaking of steel, the steel axle inside the yo-yo is inherently stronger than aluminum, so you’d expect pressure around the axle to cause the aluminum to deform or distort … but a steel axle isn’t stronger than titanium.
Titanium can be made much thinner than Alu because it is so strong, but that’d only be in the rims and cups. The bearing seats and axle area are where the yoyo material is densest, and that’s where my testing showed the real damage has to be if it’s serious. Thus titanium is also going to have a big advantage in the necessarily dense center area all yo-yos have, to fit the axle, bearing, and response pads.
Given all the above… I am thinking a Ti yo-yo is gonna be super hard to break, even if you tried! So I am now wondering: has anyone ever broken a titanium yoyo? I am guessing if it did break, it had to be an extreme damage scenario?
(No, I am not crazy enough to destroy my own titanium yoyo for science … but surely someone out there has?)