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The Museum of Yo-Yo History is a labor of love, and we would not be able to stay up-to-date with exhibits without the support of our sponsors and curators. Big thanks go to One Drop Design and Duncan for supplying us with their latest models, YoYoExpert for their help and support, and to Cody Orr, TotalArtist and YoYoBrothers™ for allowing us to use their collections!

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Round Spinning Objects Starship 2022 (mini)
Exhibit #4448
ShapeConcave )-(
ColorTitanium, raw
ResponseCBC Slim Pad
Gap Width4.3mm
Number Produced45
OwnerRick Brough

From the roundspinningobjects.com:

"Two new minis
The RSO family will welcome a new mini member in March 2022 - a boy! This pregnancy has been slightly more complex than the first, with more frequent visits to the obstetrician. In addition, my wife has temporarily left her job as an intensive care nurse to recharge before the big day. Thankfully, I am now more accustomed to my roles as a father (caring for my 3-year-old son, Isaac) and an attending physician (I am almost 1 year into my new job). RSO will transition to doing less frequent releases from today due to my increasing family responsibilities.

The second mini addition to the RSO family is STARSHIP, an undersized version of SPACESHIP. Coincidentally, my wife was pregnant with our first child while I was working on the SPACESHIP. Because this release is close to the End Titanium release, I am making it one of the lowest-priced RSO titanium yo-yos to date for the benefit of the hardcore RSO collectors.

STARSHIP is the only yo-yo remaining in the RSO inventory, as future projects have been put on hold in anticipation of my second son’s arrival in the coming month. I am aiming to fulfill all STARSHIP orders by mid-February 2022.

This STARSHIP run will be the last SPACESHIP iteration. No other versions in any other form or color will be made.

Not much has been said about the design process behind the STARSHIP / SPACESHIP in my previous write up, so I will chronicle my prototyping journey here.

There is a long story behind how I finally arrived at STARSHIP, which is based on one of the prototype CADs of the SPACESHIP.

Like most of the other RSO yo-yos, the prototyping process of SPACESHIP was rather arduous. Being new to CAD drawings and struggling with the sluggish Fusion 360 made things worse. It was during the design process of SPACESHIP that I eventually caved in and subscribed to AutoCAD, which made designing yo-yos more efficient, enjoyable and rewarding.

SPACESHIP was only put into production after 3 rounds of prototypes. The whole process took a surprisingly short 4-5 months.

The first prototype was a 50mm, C bearing, titanium yo-yo. The run was unusually sizable for an RSO prototype, consisting of 8 yo-yos (I typically only do 3 yo-yos for each prototype). The prototypes were machined by Magic YoYo and sold in a private Facebook Messenger group consisting of individuals from a yo-yo forum in October 2018. The prototype had an engraving by Jason Week, which was similar to the one on the production SPACESHIP. They loved the prototype. I was ready to put the yo-yo into production but changed my mind at the last minute.

Note that STARSHIP is machined from a revised CAD of this first prototype, with some ugly machine lines removed.

Despite the positive response from the owners of the first prototype, a second, larger prototype with a 54mm diameter was made. My thinking at that time was that a mid-sized yo-yo would be more well-received than an undersized one. An Instagram poll showed people wanted the 54mm version more than the 50mm one.

The second prototype was unique in its own right. It had a more “solid” playfeel because it had more rim weight, as well as a D bearing instead of a C bearing. But, to be completely honest, I didn’t like how it played. It was machined by YoYoEmpire, which was (at that time) the only machinist who had readily available D bearing pads that could be installed in OEM yo-yos. Today, you can recognize D bearing yo-yos made by YoYoEmpire from the white pads with a smaller outer diameter of 18mm.

The D bearing yo-yo landscape has changed in recent years, with the usage of the ubiquitous wider 19mm outer diameter D bearing pad specification popularised by Freshly Dirty. D bearing RSO yo-yos like the aluminium Bowl Mini, stainless steel Bowl Mini and TiRAMiSU come with Landing Pads of this pad specification.

I went back to Magic YoYo for the third and final prototype - a C bearing 54mm version. I changed the weight distribution slightly and shifted some weight from the rim to the yo-yo center (notice the chunkier rims on the D bearing 54mm prototype in the picture below). The changes resulted in a yo-yo with a more desirable floaty playfeel. Apart from being about 2g heavier, the final prototype was essentially identical to the production SPACESHIP. The process from prototype to production was lightning quick because Magic YoYo had designated a CNC machine specifically for SPACESHIP. The final prototype was machined, polished, assembled, shipped to me, CAD amended (with 2gm less), and production completed within a week.

Those who owned both the first SPACESHIP prototype and the production SPACESHIP preferred the former. Since then, there have been calls for RSO to do a run of the first SPACESHIP prototype. Years later, the STARSHIP is born.

A well known butterfly shape
SPACESHIP / STARSHIP is a reinterpretation of the classic butterfly shape made by other prominent companies in the past.

The pioneer of this shape was YoYoFactory with the FAST 401k, an aluminum 56mm small bearing yo-yo in 2005. It had adjustable knobs on both hubs. By twisting the knobs, the player could adjust how much the starburst grooves would jut out from the response area, altering the yo-yo’s responsiveness. The FAST 401k was a novel design and remains highly coveted by collectors today.

Fast forward to 2017, A-RT made an oversized 63mm large bearing version of the 401k aptly named the 420. Essentially a “FAST 401k Max / Plus”, it had almost identical catch zones, but was devoid of the adjustable knobs.

RecRev made a yo-yo called the Bad Rep in the interim period, an undersized hubstacks enabled yo-yo with a larger bearing. It had a steeper catch zone than the FAST 401k / 420, with a smoother transition from the pad groove to the rim. The Bad Rep is the only yo-yo out of the few I have mentioned in this write-up that I have never owned or thrown.

SPACESHIP’s catch zone mirrors that of Bad Rep's, with a smooth arc from the pad groove to the rim. Being undersized like Bad Rep, SPACESHIP has a bigger width-to-diameter ratio and visually different proportions than the FAST 410k / 420. The rims of SPACESHIP are also sharper than the others. SPACESHIP is the only titanium yo-yo of the lot.

Comparison with Spaceship
STARSHIP is only 0.5gm lighter than SPACESHIP - this weight difference is insignificant. However, if you were to blindfold yourself and do tricks with both yo-yos, STARSHIP feels paradoxically “heavier” as the weight is concentrated in a smaller package. An example of what you would feel would be throwing a CLYW Peak, then throwing a Wooly Marmot 1 (essentially a condensed version of the Peak) after. Weight distribution wise, both yo-yos are similar, but this is irrelevant as both yo-yos are of different diameters. STARSHIP and SPACESHIP are completely different yo-yos, and it would be worthwhile to own both of them.

For those who own the first SPACESHIP prototype, STARSHIP is identical except that some machine lines have been perfected and smoothened out. If you already own the first prototype, the only reason that would justify getting STARSHIP is its brand new engraving and package, which is, like SPACESHIP, by Jason Week. More on this later.

A new CNC machined canister
The first SPACESHIP prototype was the first RSO yo-yo that came with a CNC machined canister, which costs almost as much to make as an aluminium yo-yo. The black canisters were engraved with the words “SPACESHIP PROTOTYPE” in the alien language I created together with Jason Week, and had the number of the yo-yo carved on the site of the canister. Since then, I have included a delrin canister for the production SPACESHIP (in black and white), Doombot (in red), SPACESHIP ES (in blue) and most recently Droid (in black).

For STARSHIP, the canister is machined out of polycarbonate, the same material that is used to make many yo-yos on the market today and the one used to machine the custom caps and rings for Gravity. In addition, the canister is translucent, which showcases the silhouette of the yo-yo within.

The number of each yo-yo is engraved on the base of each canister.

Art by Jason Week
The STARSHIP art, like SPACESHIP, is by Jason Week.

The story behind the SPACESHIP was an impending invasion of Earth by an alien species called the Nactaria, with SPACESHIPS sent to Earth by another alien species called the Eljasek to protect the human race. Since then, the human race has successfully fended off the Nactarians and have brought the battle to the Nactarians. The STARSHIP artwork shows human STARSHIPS travelling towards the Nactarian planet.

Will the human race emerge victorious?

What is in the package
• CNC machined polycarbonate canister with engraved serial number (22) engraving and full-color label (separate from canister)
• Starship mission embroidered patch
• Space pattern protective cloth
• Set (2) of 19mm sky blue, type 50 Landing Pads
• Sky blue strings"

Diameter: 50mm
Width: 42mm
String gap: 4.3mm
Weight: 62.5gm
Bearing: Size C, concave
Axle: M4 Ă— 8mm
Response: 19mm, type 50 Landing Pads
Material: Titanium
Pieces: 45

Released February 5, 2022; sold out Sunday, February 6, 2022

Original retail price: $320 US

Of interest...
To see all mini yo-yos in this museum, in the left panel, select Exhibits.
In the right pane, in the Name/Model field, type mini, then select Browse.
Other Views
Profile and internals
Side A, angled, large
Sides A and B, face, large
Complete contents & engraved serial number on canister

2005-2023 Software © David W. Hall & Grahame BaptieWright
Content by David W. Hall & Rick Brough