Auldey Firefox Review (2010 yoyo)
I just love a good crappy yoyo. I like sitting at my computer browsing potentially dodgy Chinese online wholesale price stores looking for strange cheap yoyos that take my fancy. It's a challenge to find one that looks like it has a lot of potential despite its low price tag, but when you find one, it can be a real keeper.
One such yoyo I have purchased in recent months was the Auldey Firefox, and it really ticks all the fantastically crappy yoyo boxes. In my reviews, I never have to comment on the state of a yoyo upon receiving it because when you buy from reputable stores such as Yoyoexpert, the products, shipping and customer service is excellent; not so with dubious stores.
First of all, the yoyo at least got to my house. I have bought other yoyos from such stores and had an entirely different product shipped to me. Once, I got a green headband with metal spikes sent to me instead of my yoyo. Bummer. The condition of the yoyo when I received it was woeful. There were light scratches and pinpricks on it as well as some strange unidentified gunk... Ick. It looked like the guy who packed it was working on letting a loogie loose just before he got to assembling mine. Another very notable thing about the state of the yoyo is that they put the bearing in crooked and just screwed it up until both halves just jammed up against it. It looked like a crooked burger. After unscrewing both halves and attempting to put it back together properly, it was very difficult to screw it together. Doing so caused the anodisation on both bearing posts to completely rub off, leaving shiny and slightly damaged posts. It's not sounding so go this far, is it?
Gap width: 4.5mm
The yoyo is a pure organic design with fairly deep schmoove rings around the response area removing unwanted friction with string/wall contact. The profile bears projection grooves like those Onedrop use, presumably to reduce friction during grinds (or as an attempt to look more legitimate). It has a fair bit of centre weight due to the large flat area at the base of the cup and the nub. The rims are thickened underneath in the cup. The yoyo is from 2010, which makes sense when you consider it's overall design.
Opening up the yoyo reveals all kinds of cheap hardware. The bearing is an almost-patent-breaking concave(ish) steel bearing. I say almost patent breaking because the way that Auldey seemed to have gotten around this is to make a fraction of a millimetre at the very edge of the bearing flat instead of pure concave. Its an OK bearing, but nothing you will miss when it dies after it's likely short life. It's noisy, gritty, but nonetheless unresponsive for the most part. Occasionally, it will make a slight screaming sound as some of the shaved off aluminium from the bearing post gets in there. Whenever you remove the bearing, you will need to clean it immediately after putting back on because of this, causing you to have to remove it and clean it again, causing more aluminium to get in the bearing..... Yeah.... I got around this by lubing the bearing to high heavens and lubing up the bearing post itself which is really not ideal. You generally want to avoid getting lube around the guts of the yoyo because it can cause response pads to come out. The response pads are something of a hybrid between your typical 19mm pad and O rings. They are actually not too bad at all considering how weird they are. I've left them in and they've been reliable. The axle is very long and made of aluminium. It has no hex key hole at the end, revealing it's nastiness. This can prove a problem if the axle gets jammed into one of the halves and you want to remove it.
Once the yoyo was together and operable, it was a very fun yoyo as well as extremely comfortable to use. Its small size makes technical and chopsticks tricks easy and it's light weight makes it very maneuverable and easy on the shoulder. I find that organics are very fun to use because of comfort and smoothness in play. They tend to move in a more controlled manner when compared to blisteringly fast V shaped yoyos. My main motivation for buying this yoyo was because I wanted an undersized and light organic yoyo, which is very difficult to find these days. I was surprised to find that the spin times of this yoyo are fairly good when considering its size and shape. I put this down to its generous schmooving (the cut out rings around the guts of the yoyo) and also its rim weight. It grinds fairly well but you need to be careful to control it, and it also has an effective IRG for those who fancy such things.
One style this yoyo really under performs in is horizontal play. It just doesn't have a low enough edge for it to perform even basic combos. Organic curves need to arc right down to meet the edge of the response pads for them to be as effective as they can be (ie OneDrop Benchmark 2014 O), but this one has a large curve down into a flat area. Schmoove rings don't help with this style of play at all because its more about the shape of the area.
I'll admit that this review does not sound very favourable, but I really do like the yoyo with all of its faults and I find it quite satisfying to use. It can be refreshing to use a yoyo that is a good step back from modern design. I bought it for $19 USD. Is it worth the price after all?.... Well perhaps not when considering its poor construction quality, however, I like it and I give it a good throw now and again. If you're interested, Google it and you might find one.