The fate of my first yoyo

Greetings all. I’ve never posted to this topic before, but thought " Hey, this would be a cool story to do it with". Sooo…here it is:

Its the tale…or fate of my first yoyo.

Up until now I had thought my first yoyo was a “fun” item my sister in law had given me for my birthday about 3 years ago. It was one of those cheapy ones from a disney movie. Then the year after that she did it again and gave me another. That one, it turns out is an official…Dollar Tree yoyo. (Which btw…is not that bad for a $2.00 yoyo). But I knew nothing of the ways of the Yo…so they sat in a drawer…unused, until recently when I watched…like many a peeps…( Wait for it )…Netflix - We are the Champions - Yoyo episode. So I thought " Maybe I’ll learn how to do something with these things."…just for fun. And there it began.

I mentioned all this to my mom and she said…“Nope , I dont think those are your first yoyo’s. I think you had one from high school times. Your old boxes are in the garage. You might want to check through them.” So I did. Inside one of those boxes was my " Treasure box". You know the one…its the old shoe box or what not where your treasured items from when you were little, were put for safe keeping, at the time you decided you were done playing with “Toys” and wanted to turn your attention to more important things…like your buddies…and girls.

Inside this treasure box…there it was…my first yoyo…an emerald green Duncan Imperial.

Truth is…I remember nada about this thing. Dont know how it came into my hands or why. Still I musta been happy about getting it thought because I even …gasp…engraved my name on the back side with a wood burning iron. But what is clear is that I most certainly did Not ever learn how to use it.

I say this because upon inspection of it now…things have happened to it that wouldnt have happened to it, if I did. And it is quite easy to piece together from there story of its fate, just by looking at it.

That story begins with …the string. When I dug it out, it only had a tattered, small remnant of the original string, still tied around the axle. So I would say that I did try to use it. But I didnt get the hang of it and there was no one around to help me out. Eventually, the string probably ended up with a bunch of knots in it. So…I tried to take the old one off but I didnt know how. So, I tried really, really hard to unscrew it. That apparently didnt work. Sooo…I got the bright idea to try and pry it apart…umm…with a flat head screw driver. That didnt work either. I was either to young or not strong enough to pry it apart.

This abuse is clear because if I were successful…that bit of old string…wouldnt still be there. Also, a few days ago…after carefully…and using proper tools…I was able to take it apart. Each sides axle holes are pretty stripped out…from trying to unscrew it. Also one sides inner plate is cracked and both have marking that could have only come from wedging a screwdriver around in there.

So then…unable to get it apart and put a new string on it…it looks like it was used for other things beside a yoyo. From wear and tear and scuff marks, that could have been a number of things…but Im betting that would include a hockey puck on a bedroom wooden floor…ummm…maybe a boulder to knock over attacking armies of those green plastic soldiers, a rock to knock down soda cans, a bowling ball to strike down those plastic bowling pins, and so on.

Eventually I tired of those things and my attention turned else where and it was put away in my treasure box and quickly forgotten and there it sat, a long time…

…Until now.

Now…me being older and wiser…I got the idea that "Hey, maybe it would be cool to be able to use this thing the right way. But in its current condition…it wasnt working very well. The inner plates were slightly bent and loose, one was cracked, the axle slots were badly stripped out. The inner plates axle holes were slightly raised from trying to pull the axle through them. And it didnt spin well. Hey…I didnt know that these things werent supposed to be taken apart. But couple days ago, I got the idea to try and fix it.

After much pondering and a few practice repair runs and a couple of after the fact gap adjustments, I was actually able to get it working…just like new…mostly.

And just a few minutes ago, this old yoyo…actually did it first trick…ever.

Thus is the story of my first yoyo. Hope you found it interesting. There were probably some humorous cringe moments that happened from those of you who knew better.

Feel free to share the story of your first yoyo.

  • Cheers

It’s not as much of a story, and it isn’t the first. My first was probably a Red Imperial that’s lost to time, but I do have a first yoyo. It came from the gift shop at the Blue Bell Creamery in Brenham Texas.

Gravity pull was all I could try to do at that point, so I remember tying the string to the axle to “fix” the yoyo’s tendency to sleep.

And then, at some point, the axle snapped. It went in a drawer somewhere and never got thrown away, so it’s still in remarkably good shape.

I keep planning to eventually do something with the old halves.


Nice !

Yah…you should go for it. Give the ol wooden yoyo a second chance at life.

Im not entirely sure what kind of an axle this yoyo would have, but you did say it snapped so Im thinking wooden so I googled around. Similar yoyos ( Ironically…Tillamook Creamery…who also makes ice cream also has a souvenir yoyo just like it ) appears to also have a wooden axles. I came across terms like Fixed Axle and wood types like Maple and Beech woods.

I did find this one listing that might help. It does have a center metal axle thought, but at least you can see what the wooden part looks like.

Also…there are several companies that engrave wooden yoyo for company events, etc. Maybe you can write them and see if they would sell you a couple replacement axles.

There are also several companies that have yoyo making kits.

If your axle was just regular wooden dowel…maybe Home Depot sells Maple or Beech wood dowels and you could just use one of those and make your replacement.

First thing I would guess is that you would need to know the size of that axle hole.

But bottom line is…yes those halfs do look in good shape…so by all means…why dont cha put them back together and make a yoyo once again out of it.

Thanks for sharing and the photos.

_ Cheers


Got this butterfly xt like 6 or 7 months ago or something and I’ve been playing with yo-yos everyday since. Pretty new but I’ve been really enjoying yoyoing!

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One day a classmate brought a green Henrys Lizard to class, and I got to try it out. Got hooked and asked my parents to buy me one. I learned all basic tricks on it; now it just sits in my case until I use it for responsive play sometimes

(“Painted” the logo on the yoyo black back then because it looks cool)

Not as intersting a story but anyways


My original plan was to convert it into something like a Roller Woody, using some combination of TK Turbo Pads and parts from a Duncan ball bearing kit, but I am coming around to the idea to it being best as a one-piece fixed axle. I have spare wooden sleeves for No Jives, Silver Buillets, and Spintastics Technics. I could fill one in with epoxy to reinforce it. I want to make sure it’s put together just right, so what I’d like to do is use a drill press to get the holes the right size for the replacement axle and also make sure that the new axle will be well-centered and straight. Then I’d like to cut a sheet of acrylic as a gap template so the new gap will be uniform and the right width.

That was a lot to sit through, so here’s my other “first” yoyo, a reproduction 1955 Duncan Tournament that I bought the evening after my wedding in November 2012, which got me back into yoyo as an adult.


So I’ve posted this a few times no need to keep posting about it but I’ll share the thread again.

My first yoyo was a raider it’s still a raider but it’s had some work done as noted I. The previous post. It loops pretty well now to be honest.


@ GTDropknot

Cool. Thats a nice one. Sounds like Duncan is still being peoples first yoyo. And it sounds like you are as new as me. Yup it is fun, but when it gets frustrating…my moto has been - keep at it…keep at it…keep at it…and practice, practice, practice. " Eventually "…stuff does start clicking in.


@ SML. Re: Your Blue bell yoyo. Wow…sound like you really know what youre doing…and a cool project. Good luck with that.
Re: Tournament…there it is…Duncan got someone going again. Cool.


Yerp impulse buy from a big box store! You should jump in on trick a week! It’s helped me get exposed to lots of Yoyo stuff. When I get frustrated, I just work on something else or switch styles and that’s been working pretty well so far!

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@ Mistale

" Henry Lizard" I never knew a yoyo could be called that. When I first read that line I thought someone had brought their pet to class. Hahaha. Nice story. Thanks for sharing.


@ Captroger.

Yah, that definitely has…ummm…evolved hahaha
Thanks for sharing.

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