Yoyo modifications which are known as modes are diverse changes made to a yoyo by Modders who want to make them function better or make them look better. Many times the innovations in modding are reflected into later models. Such example of mod would be the recess for the response system.



  • Recessing– making a recess for holding the response system to reduce the friction between the response and the string
  • Shaved O-ring -as the name says, it implies the removal of excess material from the rubber rings
  • Silicon– putting flowable silicone into the empty recess of the yoyo for the improved response system
  • Sanding– a method for reducing friction for finger grinds
  • Shims-somewhat is similar in shape to the response pads but smaller than them. They are mostly used in old YoyoJam yoyos
  • Changing the bearing-transition from flat bearing to center trac or concave bearing
  • High Wall-remove material from the face of the yoyo for improved 5a play



Most of the older yoyos have the responsive system come out of the side of the yoyo increasing friction between the yoyo wall and the string, thus slowing down the yoyo.

The manufacturers started to make yoyos with some sort of circular cavity for the circular response system to fit in the later introduced response pads.

The response pads have a sticky side that is put onto the recessed circle.This new system allows for less responsiveness and improved playability.

For existing yoyos, the solution is to ask one yoyo modder to use CNC machine /lathe to create that special recess for the friction stickers. You can check out the list of modders at the end of the article.

Shaved O-Rings

Some old yoyos used to have O-rings as response system.O-rings were circular response pads with a look similar to a lifebuoy(mm scale). The O-ring comes out of the walls of the yoyos rubbing the string, thus slowing down the yoyo.

By shaving the O-rings you practically take of the excess rubber and turn the O-ring into a response pad which is flush with the inner walls of the yoyo.


Flowable silicone for yoyo response

Flowable silicone has been used more and more to create a response system. In this case, flowable silicone is put into the recess and left to dry out and become more durable.

The excess is removed by using a sharp knife. This is mostly used for unresponsive play by advanced and professional yoyo players who don’t like the regular response of the friction stickers.


Sanding is most often used to make a yoyo better for finger grind tricks. A grind is whenever a yoyo makes contact with the hand as it spins. This kind of tricks are mostly done with unresponsive yoyos, as the responsive yoyos can snag and come back unexpectedly.

Sanding the yoyo (do it just on a crappy plastic one you don’t regret damaging) will reduce the friction between the hand and the yoyo. As a result, you get longer finger grinds.

Some people use medium grit sandpaper for optimum performance. Screw the two yoyo halves tightly without the bearing before sanding.

Hold the sandpaper against the sides of the yoyo and move your hand upon the surface around the yoyo to make concentrical circles.

After that, the modders unscrew the yoyo and clean the yoyo’s surface for avoiding plastic waste into the bearings.

Using shims

These are small rings made of cardboard, metal,rubber of plastic for increasing the width of the yoyo. The process is reversible. A yoyo with a larger gap width tends to be less responsive, as the response system is away from the yoyo string.

The shims are introduce between the bearing and the yoyo side. It is more recommended to use cardboard shims than metal shims, as the aluminium ones can get stuck into the yoyo side and you’ll have trouble.

High Wall

Duncan Freehand Zero front view profile

A high wall is a design element related to a yoyo which has a butterfly shape. The yoyo also presents the flat section fo the profile that extends past the response area before the section that is slanted. Traditional yoyo has an indefinitely high wall, but nowadays the yoyos are significantly different.

High walling was a technique used by modders who wanted to modify the shape and playability of the toy. As this became a common practice among modders, manufacturers began to consider the wall height in their yoyo design. Such example is the limited run of  Hight wall YoyoFactory 888s.

if a yoyo has a high-walled profile, the toy has a thinner profile with more surface touching the yoyo when it tilts. The narrow shape was once considered a good trait for a freehand yoyo while now it is not the case anymore.

It was also thought that higher walls lead to cleaner string rejections something true only in the high wall craze.

A high wall is easy to do on a Duncan yoyo, but difficult on any other yoyo as it has a bearing seat. When you create a high wall you need to lower the bearing seat. If you ever think of modding the yoyo like this just be aware that you have to completely re-machine the bearing seat.


They are the guys who modify yoyos.Most of them improve the yoyo so much so that they take it to the next level of playability. Most of the modifications are made for enhancement but others are made to somehow repair a broken or a yoyo that is not configured well

Prominent Modders

  • Mo Chavez
  • Takeshi Kamisato
  • James Keenan
  • Shinobu Konmoto
  • Brian Roberts(Doctor Popular/Doc Pop)
  • Perry Prine

You can find the modders below on YoyoExpert forums by the usernames presented and contact them for any of the services that interest you. I don’t guarantee that everybody will be available.

  • England1414 7 -custom anodizing work
  • Rodrigues 8- pad recesses, silicone recesses, shcmoove bearings, get rid of starburst,
  • Kyo 6 -he does hub replacements, custom weight rings, custom parts and bodies. He also has experience with CNC production runs.
  • Landon Balk -he has experiences with CNC production runs. He also makes bearing mods weight rings recesses and stripped axle repair.
  • mrcnja 3- he does high walls, pad recessing, schmoove bearings, SPR mods etc
  • yoyospirit 4 he does polishes, bearing sizes and stripped axle repair


Those were the mods you can do to a yoyo and the modders can help you achieve the perfect customizations for your yoyo. if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments sections! I will answer as quickly as aI can!




He is passioned about yoyoing and technology .Enjoys dreaming about the multiple possibilities the internet offers to share the knowledge gathered in 2 years of experience within the skill toys world.Wordpress comes in handy for achieving this dream and for materializing his vision.


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