Question about centre weight and rim weight.

I know basically what play characteristics are caused by heavily rim weighting or lots of center weight.

What I want to know is this: does adding more center weight cancel out the feeling and benefits of rim weight, or does it simply add a different feel, and the benefits from whatever rim weight there is still stand?

I suppose what I’m trying to ask is whether they offset one another or not.

I’ve worded this fairly awkwardly, but I hope you understand what I mean.

I’m still learning the dynamics of a yoyo and its weight distribution, I’m guessing that it could cancel each other out in a sense and may make it feel more “uniform.” Playing a Shu-Ta vs the Shutter, the Shu-Ta features slightly more weight further out from the center and to me feels like it’s got a more powerful spin and more stable/forgiving. The Shutter has a lot of of center weight along with the rim weight which seems to cancel out some of the rim weight qualities, giving the yoyo a more of the “middle of the road” kind of feel.

Not sure how correct I am though, would be good to know these things in the event that I decide to design a yoyo (wishful thinking here).

I’ve been thinking about this type of thing as well. I imagined a bi-metal that was something like Stainless steel hub and center, Titanium walls, and then more stainless steel on the rims. It would look kinda like this i guess-

This is honestly a horrendously rough profile shot, but I’s basically kinda what I picture in my head. I have no idea if this would even work on a yoyo or not, but if it did it would make for some pretty interesting weight distribution, and most likely a truly unique feel on the string.

Edit: What about a chief that had stainless steel rims, and then the double ring was also ss. The rest of the body 7075? That would also achieve the kind of thing I’m talking about.

1 Like

My experience with yo-yo’s (I have no knowledge of the physics or engineering, however) is that yo-yo’s with both middle weight and rim weight just play like they have both rim weight and middle weight. They don’t cancel each other out, they are just both there doing their thang.

Those are my thoughts as well.

My 2Sick Queen has a play feel of the powerful spin and heft of rim weight, but also has good center weight characteristics such as fast movement/directional changes and a great bind and throw feel. The design looks to have concentrations of weight near the Centre as well as the rim.

I just want to hear what others have to say on the matter.

Side effects


Lots of rim weight = longer spin times, more stable, feels more solid

Lots of center weight = shorter spin times, less stable, feels more floaty

Not sure how they interact when you have a lot of both.

Lots of rim weight = longer spin times
Lots of centre weight =more stability

The rim weight helps with longer spin times as Moment of inertia(I)=Mass x (Radius) and with mass at the rims, I increases leading to an increase in Kinetic Energy(K.E.=I/2 x (omega))
The centre weight helps with stability as Torque=I x (alpha) and an increase in I leads to an Increase in Torque leading to more difficulty in tilting the yoyo

Both are independent and dont interfere with each other. It is though a very obvious thing that you cant have lots of rim weight as well as lots of centre weight as that would lead to a heavy yoyo that feels like a dumbbell while throwing.

The above reasoning is completely mine… and may be wrong…in fact i do feel it’s wrong…it will only work if we keep omega and alpha as constant… which i dont think happens…Im still in High school so please dont judge ;D ;D ;D


Where’s dirtybirdy when you need him eh? ;D

Kadabrium has a fair point. You can test this out for yourself to an extent with a Onedrop yoyo by experimenting with different side effect weights. I shall attempt this myself when I get a spare moment and see what happens. From what I recall I didn’t like what ultra-lights did to my Chik, but I can’t remember if it was the performance or just the feel that was negatively affected.

I wonder what would happen if OD made a really light, low rim weight yoyo with crazily heavy side effects…

I was thinking more rim weight would mean more stability because it’s spread out evenly rather than being concentrated in one place. I’m thinking of it in terms of sports cars. Most sports cars are built really low to the ground with most of their weight as close to the bottom as possible so they don’t flip from being too top heavy. This logic probably doesn’t transfer over when you go to a gyroscope, but it sounded solid when I wrote it lol. Wait, maybe this doesn’t make sense. I was tired when I wrote it lol.

More rim weight makes the yo-yo stabler. Look at any yo-yo notorious for its stability and you will see this.

That may be true…but doesn’t the Cascade have thin rims…and is known for it’s stability?..hey but what do i know…i just got into yoyoing 6 months ago :slight_smile:

Only the very edge of the cascade’s rims are thin…look just a little past the edge of them and you will see they get very thick!

A yoyo cross section is a continuum and so it’s not quite as simple as saying its rim weighted or center weighted. The weight distribution occurs across the entire continuum which is why every yoyo has it’s own unique character.

The basic physics of a yoyo are solved. What isn’t solved is correlating the physics to particular play characteristics. One reason for this is that the play characteristics are subjective. One person’s “floaty” is another person’s “zippy”.

Have you ever played a yoyo and didn’t like it and then you try it again 6 months later and you you love it? This is an example of the subjective nature of evaluating the qualities of a yoyo in play. So many subjective factors come in to play including current emotional state, expectation and muscle memory of what yoyo you have been recently throwing.

Interesting stuff …


I’ve had that happen 30 mins apart with my punchline repeater, we have a hate/love relationship…

Inner wall width means a lot. A yoyo could be fully rim weighted but if the wall is high it will still be tilty, a yoyo that have “even” weight with very low wall will be stable.

I have a theory about weight distribution for a while now, but I have no resource to prove or disprove this, though out of the yoyos I tried I’m sure that it’s more or less correct.

Basically, there are two kinds of stable, “tilty” stable, and “vibey throw” stable. Tilty stable is what most people think when it comes to stable yoyos, they don’t tilt easily. Vibey throw stable is when a yoyo is less likely to have “throw vibe” because the weight distribution makes it less likely to vibe. The thing is, the more you add weight to the rim, the more likely it has throw vibe. I’ll explain this in a sec.

My theory is, to get the most stable yoyo possible, you will have to put most of its weight closer width-wise, but further diameter-wise.
BUT, if you put the weight that way, the yoyo will have to have a very high wall cancelling out the stability. It’s a compromise.
I don’t know if they think the same way as me but Yoyojam did, by having heavier metal ring on the catch zone, it’s the best of both worlds. You get better throw stability (less likely to vibe), and have low wall for tilt stability.

All of this started when I was working with DTI back then. The owner said the previous yoyo was tilty, so I altered the design by making the wall narrower and moving the weight to the rim. The result was a vibey mess. Turns out that adding weight outward (width-wise) increase the likelyhood of it having throw vibe, or worse it will amplify a little vibe from a little machining imperfection that won’t affect the yoyo if it has better weight distribution.
Think of a yoyo made of pencil, instead of wanting to spin along its axis, it will want to spin sideways instead because there are less weight that can balance the spin out, and more tendency to spin sideways. To make it work you’ll have to reduce the width and add diameter.

However, I could be wrong, if anyone can test this out that would be amazing.

Certain things are subjective such as “feel” which is just a relation of all the yo-yos defined characteristics (fixed) in relation to a persons personal preference (which changes constantly).

Other things are not, such as precession rate (how “tilty” or “stable” it is)… that can be calculated very easily and precisely.

As to the original question… rim weight increases spin times at the cost of feeling a bit slower paced (amplified on heavier yoyos and can be countered by lighter weights ie Draupnir).

Center weight really isn’t so much center weight as it is ‘not rim weight’… the center is just a good place to put weight that you don’t want in the rims… this helps keep you balanced. Center weight keeps the RPMs from dropping extremely low and the yoyo becoming less stable in wider bodies (ie most yoyos, since moving too much of the total mass further out will decrease stability)

you should do this with another new benchmark series. same shape and specs, different distribution

This looks like a super interesting concept. I am especially interested by having a primarily titanium yoyo with stainless steel on the rims. You would be able to make the walls thin to reduce overall weight and then the stainless would keep spin times high. Also, having the stainless in the center would help stability.