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Luftverk Executive by DocPop - titanium (mini)
Exhibit #4378
ShapeConcave )-(
ColorPolished titanium
ResponseCBC Slim Pad
Number Produced50
OwnerRick Brough

Doctor Popular × Luftwerk Titanium Yo-Yo Works collaboration of the Executive

From www.kickstarter.com/projects/docpop/:
"The Titanium Executive is Coming

October 19, 2021

We are proud to introduce the Titanium Executive, an even classier version of the Executive that we are releasing in collaboration with Luftwerk! This yo-yo has the same profile as the original Executive, but will feature laser engravings, slim 19mm pads and some nice changes to the weight distribution.

Luftwerk presents the Titanium Executive

Luftwerk presents the Titanium Executive! This yo-yo will be available on Tuesday, October 26, 2021, at 20:00 MST on Luftwerk.com and will be limited to 50 pieces retailing at $285 each.

It's been a pleasure working with Jeffrey Pang on this titanium version of the Executive, and we can't wait for you to try the finished product."

From luftverk.com/blogs/:
"The Titanium Executive - A Collab with Ernest and Doc
by Jeffrey Pang
October 18, 2021

When I started yoyoing as a kid there wasn't much media. YouTube wasn't really a thing so you only had a few options to learn tricks from. Kens World On a String was a classic go to with jpegs of how to do tricks, and if you wanted to watch videos it would be a painful download of Quicktime or Adobe Flash videos. But I remember vividly watching a video of a man doing the most creative tricks in an elevator shaft - you would know him as Doctor Popular. I must have learned a dozen of his tricks (and likely you unknowingly have too).

Visiting San Francisco has always been able to leave fond memories. The first time I went solo (7 years ago), I actually didn't get a chance to meet Doc. It was where I met Ernest for the first time - another accomplished player I knew from my childhood internet days. I have memories of us getting It's–It (the name of a San Francisco ice cream sandwich that Anti-Yo's Eetsit yo-yo is named after), and going to a local Kendama meet. It's amazing when a stranger welcomes you to their city with open arms, and finding out the people you looked up to are actually just really cool, down to earth people is a great feeling.

When Ernest and Doc reached out [to me] regarding to this project I was more than stoked. The Executive yo-yo project they did on Kickstarter in 2016 was a huge success and involved so many good people. One of them was One Drop of Eugene, Oregon. They manufactured and designed the original Executive - bringing Ernest and Doc's conceptual drawings to life. This meant I had a really good base to start with as far as converting an aluminum yo-yo design to titanium.

The one thing that they nailed in the original Executive was the profile. Something about the original undersized shape just felt right in the hand for a pocket yo-yo. It was an aspect of the yo-yo I wanted to leave completely unchanged because it was such an recognizable and iconic design. The main challenge was converting an existing design to titanium because the material is so much more dense than aluminum. The weight in the hub was extracted quite a bit to remove dead weight. The change from the thicker One Drop [brand] pads to the [more common] 19mm slim pads helped shave more material off the hub. This change also meant that a captive hub nub was needed for the axle - both adding function and, from a style perspective, a classic nod to the Luftverk design language.

We agreed that the look of the yo-yo felt right—it looked very similar to a titanium version of the Playmaxx/ProYo Ace, a yo-yo I have referenced before in the past as an inspiration to my designs. The engravings are also a design layout inspired by older generation nostalgic topography. I like the term "reimagined" because with this collaboration I felt this was a yo-yo that I converted into titanium more than designed from scratch, attempting to preserve what made the original Executive so special.

The original Executive branding was a fun playful representation of a classy business man's pocket yo-yo. It involved original art ideas from Ernest and Doc, which was then brought to life by another San Fransisco friend of mine, the late Paul Escolar. When I found out he did most of the original artwork I felt a need to include his work as a thank you to his contribution to the yo-yo world. Me and Paul were actually in the process of making an Escolar edition Luftverk yo-yo when he passed away, and including his artwork in this project was a nod to the positive influence he had in my life. The pin you see here and the t-shirt motif on the certificate were both artworks created by Paul, for the original aluminum Executive release.

Seeing the iconic signatures of both Ernest and Doc on the certificates are something very meaningful to me – something that the childhood me would have questioned how I got to where I was now. I printed these and sent them out to them signed - in the ideal world I would have loved to fly out to San Fransisco and hang out for the week. It just wasn't in the books this time, due to [covid] restrictions and extra precautions in travel so we opted for many video calls. I still learned quite a lot of history from both. It was fascinating to hear their perspectives on how the yo-yo world has changed.

Regarding the actual play characteristics, the original aluminum version is a bit lighter at 55.6 grams. We initially did a prototype weighing 58.4g, but when I sent that version to Doc and Ernest, they offered some well-needed changes. One thing we noticed was the lack of stability in the first titanium prototype, and the overall heft of the yo-yo landing at the bottom of the string. For the production version, I knew that I needed to cut down center weight, and add slightly more to the rim. This proved to be a bit difficult considering how small this yo-yo was; there just isn't that much room to work with. The production version features a shorter hub nub, and a decrease in overall weight by one gram, to 57.4 grams. This might seem insignificant but the combination of the weight distribution change made it play much more nimble.

With such a small shape, I was shocked by how well titanium worked with this profile and design. The overall package is impressive, and the weight of it feels perfect for the small 45mm diameter. Personally, I found the aluminum version to be a bit lighter than I'd like, so the weight for me was a welcome change offering a bit more performance. It will be interesting to hear what owners of the original think of this new version.

It has been a pleasure working with both Ernest and Doc, and with no surprise. Both have been such iconic players in the yo-yo world, and their insight into this project has taught me a lot. It makes me realize the value of having a second or third pair of eyes during the design process."

Diameter: 45mm
Width: 30mm
Weight: 57.4gm
Bearing: Size C
Response: 19mm slim pads
Material: Titanium
Production: 50 in polished titanium

Original retail price: $285 US.

Compare to the following:
Executive, debut, anodized in blue/yellow swirl
Executive, nickel-plated
Executive, gold-plated
Executive, polished titanium

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