Recently I just got myself a YYJ Speedmaker as a part of my Hiroyuki’s signature series collection before I got my YYF Protostar neon. Well, frankly speaking, I prefer YYF Protostar since it is really the “plastic beast” ! It plays just like a metal yoyo !
After some days hanging out with Protostar, I turned back to Speedmaker and found something totally different…
Here’s the basic characteristics of YYJ Speedmaker :
Material : Celcon Plastic
Diameter : 55.23 mm
Width : 36.47 mm
Weight : 61.5g
Bearing : YYJ C size
Style : 1A(as always)
Judging from the basics of Speedmaker, in 2012 its probably a beginner category yo-yo since there are too much metal rimmed yoyos out there to compete with.
However, if you take a closer look. Speedmaker shares the same characteristics of Speeder/Speeder 2. Its shape, size etc. So, basically it can PLAY just like the Speeder but with lower performance of course.
It comes with a YYJ C size bearing and a hybrid response. WOW ! Hybrid, that’s gonna be something fishy in there. Moreover, it has adjustable gap which means one could switch it from responsive to unresponsive play. But that’s not the real highlight of the yoyo and may be disadvantageous at certain circumstances.
The real show is when your strong throw skill got better and you PLAY with Speedmaker.
After some strong throw training with my heavy Protostar, I found that when using the same throw on my lighter Speedmaker, WOW ! The result was jaw-dropping. Clean, smooth and floaty. That’s what made the Speedmaker one of Mickey’s signature yoyos. Immediately I try it out on my newly learned Rewind and McBride Roller Coaster (I’m at advance part 1 level, to be honest, in 3 weeks of time). This YOYO just CUT through the air like NOTHING ! Smooth landing on the string and I can add more speed to my play. Really impressive for a yoyo which had released many years ago. With a strong throw, Speedmaker could easily spin well to complete combos too. Fun to play with, but not that competitive in modern days in my opinion though Mickey did used it to win several championships during those days.
That’s about the throw and feel of the yoyo. I can’t go deeper to skills since I’m not that pro enough.
Now about the cons. Hybrid response is good, but not that good enough. Speedmaker easily tilts due to lack of stability and weight. That’s why the better you go, you won’t feel the tilting too much. The response has O-RING on one side and a starburst on the other. Basically the O-RING helps you to bind the yoyo back/plays responsively and the starbursts just act as a sidekick in my opinion because 2 O-RINGS will made it too responsive while 2 starbursts will made it hard to bind. You could see it from the diagram view on the gap. When the yoyo tilts, that’s where this yoyo got so frustrating. If the string touches the starbursts side, you are safe, just bind it back. On the O-RING side, you could feel extreme tension on the string and the yoyo DECELERATES very fast. For those who want to use Speedmaker to learn tricks, that’s gotta be the bad news since it tilts easily.
The gap adjusting, well, in my opinion, Kitty String Slim will handle the job. but with a normal polyster and a cotton string, that’s not gonna shine much. There’s one way though , to make it dead unresponsive, it to replace the O-RING with slim response pads. You don’t wanna silicone down the starbursts as it will affect your binds later one. We are not yoyo makers after all. In addition, if you adjust the gap too much, your strings would get stuck into the axel and you need to open the caps often to remove the string and put it back again. Replace the stock bearing with a Center Trac Bearing will get the job done a little.
In a nutshell :
Pros : Light, smooth, cheap price, good for speed play and more advanced players as well as beginners, not advisable for intermediate to fresh advance player (in my opinion), good for those who wants to learn mods too
Cons: Tilts easily, not stable, may get too floaty, quite a narrow gap, need some mods to make it fully durable for high-end performances (in my opinion)
Well, if you feel like having fun with plastics, get the YYJ Speedmaker though it is a little old
Hiroyuki’s signature yoyos are definitely something to try out (p/s: he is World Champion and Guinness World Record holder LOL)