Product Review – 3yo3 Omnicron


There is something about a yo-yo that is turned on a hand-guided lathe machine that amazes me. No programs guiding the machine as it cuts into a blank. No mathematical formulas that predetermine weight distribution and outcome. The process is only guided hand of a master imagination. This is why I love Landon Balk’s yo-yos. He starts with a blank slate and effectively carves out a masterpiece that not only looks precise, but plays like a machined yo-yo. By all expectations a hand turned yoyo, such a precision and balance dependent item, should wobble like a dump truck on a back county road. Not the case with Landon’s 3yo3 creations. I am fortunate enough to have a new 3yo3 yoyo to review this week, the Omnicron, by 3yo3.


Manufacturer

3yo3

Shape

H-Shape

Weight (g)

70.00

Width (mm)

40.64

Diameter (mm)

52.07

Gap Width (mm)

4.00

Bearing Size (Inside x Outside x Width)

“A” size 5x10x4

Gap Type

Fixed

Stock Response System

Flowable Silicone


First Impression:

3yo3 is just a small side business for Landon. He just recently set up a website and is starting to expand his retail connections, but this is still mostly run out of his house. Knowing that, I did not expect much in the way of packaging. It did not really phase me to see a simple newspaper wrap up of the Omnicron, but I think that Landon has grown 3yo3 to the point where he should consider packaging. A simple plastic case and sticker with the specifications of the yo-yo can go along way to making the anticipation just a few valuable seconds longer when a customer opens a box he hopes is the yo-yo he ordered. Once I unwrapped the Omnicron, I immediately thought it looked big. It has a very “full” personality to it, but when compared to popular undersized yo-yos like the Project and 888, and looking at the specs, the Omnicron is not really that big. At 52mm diameter, the Omnicron is a fairly normal “slightly undersized” throw. This probably has to do with the sharp lines the Omnicron has. It looks big and intimidating, but is not as big as you initially think it is. This version of the Omnicron is the “Cloudy: variation due to the bead blasting. This gives it a pretty cool effect, but I appreciate 3yo3 leaving how and if they want the yo-yo finished up to the customer. You can order several variations of the acrylic Omnicron on the 3yo3 website. I love the idea of clear yo-yos, and had I not already reviewed the clear Cosmo, I would have requested a clear Omnicron from Landon.

Comfort and Tech:

Interesting thing about acrylic-it is heavier than it looks. I understand that the Omnicron is a very solid design, with thick walls and a full body shape, but man, is it heavy. 70 grams heavy. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but when you look at a yoyo that has some transparency, you don’t expect it to outweigh your metals. Learning a bit from his previous releases, Landon has threaded axle inserts and locked them in place. The bearing configuration I was sent was an “A” size bearing, but true to his “Made as Ordered” approach, Landon will turn and assemble the Omnicron to the yo-yo bearing size of you’re your choice. Like C or D sized bearings? 3yo3 has got you covered.
The response area is a nice, deep groove that can take flowable silicone with ease. The gap may vary on bearing configuration, but the “A” size setup I have is right around 4mm, which will make handing multiple wraps no problem.
Due to the design, there is not really much of an “Inner Ring Grind” area. Instead, Landon carved out the center on each side, a bit larger than the diameter of a quarter, to reduce the amount of weight on the center of the yo-yo. By chance, the “5a attached accessory” Landon makes might fit perfectly in the cutout.  I have yet to try this, but will report in when I do. The bead blasting is very soft, and feels like it will grind much better than the polished clear Cosmo.
In your hand, the Omnicron is quite beefy. The H-Shape cuts in the catch zone occur just shy of where the rims rest on the hand. This results in a comfortable hold in big hands like mine, but on smaller hands the way the middle finger sits in the gap may not be the most comfortable hold. Luckily, yoyos are about throwing, not holding!

On a Throw:

I know that this is just me, but there is a reason I avoid heavy yo-yos. Three decades of computer work (yup, as a kid I had a QWERTY baby bottle) and a case of what the doctors suspect is early onset arthritis, my hands and wrists are a bit more sensitive. The weeks long storm system slamming California was not helping. On throwing the Omnicron, I found myself taking more breaks than I usually have to in a yo-yo review session, and had to treat my hands to an ice cold soak or beg my wife for a wrist massage. The 70 grams were too much for my old man wrists, and I could hear my knuckles pop and grind on every throw. In the past I have gone on record saying that 66-68 grams was my sweet spot. It is not so much HOW the yoyo plays, but for HOW LONG I can play with the yo-yo. That being said, at 70 grams, the Omnicron has a great spin time with loads of stability. It plays moderately quick, and does not have the “clunk” that some heavier yo-yos suffer from.
There was a slight vibe in the Omnicron I had, but not enough to affect play. The shape seems to make string rejections very easy to manage, projecting up the h-shape. All in all, the spin time and stability are great and the catch zone is big enough to handle transfers and hops for even the most intimidating string configurations. The silicone response groove produced tight, consistent binds while staying free from unwanted snags. Not once did the Omnicron bind unexpectedly on me.
Grinding was a bit of a challenge, but it is possible. The acrylic still has a tendency to stick a bit to the skin, but it makes for a fast climb on an arm grind. One thing that the Omnicron is, however, is quiet. The acrylic does a great job absorbing the bearing noise that parents and spouses complain about.

Final thoughts:

While I still prefer the Cosmo, Landon’s first all acrylic yo-yo, the Omnicron not forgettable in any sense of the word. It is a beefy, full weighted throw that has a unique look, and can be ordered to any number of bearing flavors and colors. I adore choices in product configurations, and 3yo3 essentially gives you every option possible on the Omnicron. I still think that 3yo3 could use some packaging, but that just speaks to the quality of the products. Landon, your yo-yos are pieces of art. I would stand up and applaud if your packaging included, or could be converted into a display stand. The fact that it performs so well, looks so good, knowing that it is hand turned, is just amazing. The Omnicron is a yo-yo to look for, and 3yo3 is a manufacturer to watch.

The 3yo3 Omnicron is ONLY available at the 3yo3 website at this time.  Price ranges from $70 for the clear acrylic, $90 for the colored acrylic.

Written by Chris “Dr. Yo-Yo” Allen who is hoping for  future with Star Wars like prosthetic hands.

Edited by Dustin “Splugen” Gunter, who challenges Chris to thumb wrestling just to see the sad look on his face.


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'Product Review – 3yo3 Omnicron' have 5 comments

  1. September 12, 2010 @ 11:38 am Batryn

    Hey, does the Omnicron play a little floaty? Or is it solid like a genesis..

    Reply

  2. February 25, 2010 @ 7:43 pm Adegle Drops at YoYoNation (and more) | YoYoSkills

    […] Asia markets, but these are the first ones to hit the states. YoYoNation is also adding the 3yo3 Omnicron to the virtual shelves and restocking the RecRev […]

    Reply

  3. February 2, 2010 @ 9:20 am Ernie K.

    Nicely said Chris,
    I think highly of Landons abilities as a manual machinist, and the imagination to create.
    He is also a super cool guy.

    Reply

  4. February 1, 2010 @ 6:19 am Jared

    Great review, I’m reviewing one now as well. The counterweights he make are not actually sized to the cut in the Omni’s. They actually have a much smaller diameter.

    Reply

  5. January 31, 2010 @ 10:59 pm LilNath

    “Learning a but from his previous releases” should possibly be learning a bit? Good review as per usual though Chris!

    Reply


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