21st Century yo-yo

The bandalore, the incroyable, and even the joujou de Normandie. The yo-yo has had many names since the Greeks first made them from terracotta discs in 500 BC, but much as changed since then.

Big brands such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi dominated the yo-yo scene of the ’70s and ’80s, but true aficionados of the sport knew that any yo-yo bearing the Duncan name was the one to get. Now he’s back, and looking every bit the pro-grade yo-yo he always was.. and all with the aid of some trick engineering.

The Duncan Metal Zero features machined aircraft-grade aluminium for perfect balance, a high-speed ball bearing spin system for maximum spin time and interchangeable gears to alter spin speed and friction. The simple yo-yo has never been so advanced.

Duncan Metal Zero

Here at GadgetGuy HQ, we found the Metal Zero a joy to spin. And although it has been some time since we’ve practised any grind, slack or mount manoeuvres, two or three minutes into it we were ‘walking the dog’ and ‘rocking the baby’ with all our old flair. Which is to say that our new Duncan seriously needs to some rim protectors (for newbies, that’s rubber rings to protect the yo’yo’s edges.

In keeping with Duncan’s professional credentials, the Metal Zero costs a smidge more than models seen in the two dollar shops. The $50 buys more than just a yo-yo, though it buys confidence. Enough, perhaps, to even tackle the YoYoWiki tricks below:

Grind – A trick where the yo-yo touches other objects (floor, thumb, palm, etc.) while rotating. The first known grind is probably Walk the Dog.
Inner ring grind – A type of grind where a finger, usually the thumb, is inserted into the side of the yo-yo half, allowing the yo-yo to grind on your nail.
Flytrap – Cross genre type of trick where the purpose is to catch the open slipknot loop back to the fingers.
Suicide – A slack trick, where a loop of string is dropped and later recaught.
Mount – A configuration of string and yo-yo between the player’s hands. Simple mounts are Trapeze or Wrist Mount.
Freethrowing – A style of yoyoing where you throw the yoyo around different obstacles.
Laceration – A type of slack trick, where a whip is slung around a finger or a string segment.
Whip – Slack trick, where a loop of string is whipped into the gap to hold the yo-yo.
Offstring – A style of yo-yoing where the yo-yo is not tied to the string.