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Author Topic: Can't catch the top.  (Read 7466 times)

Jim

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Can't catch the top.
« on: July 14, 2012, 08:37:24 PM »

My son and I are new at tossing Tops. We have done a few ground tricks and they rock.
We have not been able to really catch them.
We have cut the strings to our lengths to our shoulders. And tried tossing them laterally -ish and horizontally -ish.

But they either give us black eyes or go off in funny directions.
Can anyone give us some tips?
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the Earl of Whirl

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2012, 09:27:22 PM »

Yea!  Welcome to the black eye club.  You are officially one of us, now.

We have people here who like different lengths of string.  Sometimes that "to the shoulder thing" works.  Sometimes it is not so good.  Your height is not the best factor to determine string length.  Is the top turning over and getting close to landing on the tip on the ground?
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Happiness runs in a circular motion!!!

kevinm

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2012, 09:48:21 PM »

hey jim,
welcome to the forum.
if you are able to throw the top to the ground and it is landing upright, all you have to do is work on is how much to pull back on the string before the top releases. it is almost the same motion as throwing the top down to the ground, just work on pulling straight back, in the opposite direction, and do it gently until you see how much effort it takes to get the top back to about where you hand is.
you don't have to pull back until the top is near the end of the string, it sounds like maybe you are pulling back too soon or too hard. what are you throwing? the heavier the top, the more effort it takes. on the lighter plastic tops, it's really a pretty gentle motion to get it to your hand.
good luck! keep practicing, it'll come to you.
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Watts' Tops

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2012, 10:02:53 PM »

Just a word of encouragement.  I spent 4 hours straight trying before having the top land in my hand.  I had a big headache by that time but kept at it. It was really rewarding when it happened.  That was about 51 years ago. 
It is the gentle snap back when the top reaches the end of the string and soft catch like catching a baseball.  Give with the top and sometimes use your thumb as a bang board.  Check out some of the videos on this web site.  They should help a lot. :D
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Watts' Tops
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Jim

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2012, 10:27:08 PM »

We are spinning One spintastic(bearing top).
And we have 2 plastic duncan's.


Jim
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Larry D.

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2012, 10:41:03 PM »

Welcome to the Forum Jim!

Here is a slow motion video which might help?

spintop boomelang?????

Stick with it.  :)
« Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 09:17:51 AM by Larry D. »
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ta0

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2012, 01:53:22 AM »

My guess is the same as Kevin's: you are probably pulling too early.
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jim in paris

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2012, 04:28:45 AM »

hello Jim

my tips
1 check the string length : for a blizzard it should be around 65 inches
2 cover your top with sticky tape , it will be protected from major crashes while learning
3 like my fellow forum members, i'd advise you to pull back as late as possible

happy spinning  8)

jim
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"oeuvre de coeur prend tout un homme"

Kirk

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2012, 02:33:59 PM »

I caught my first boomerang last week!  What a thrill.  I found that a really smooth wind is important. Any imperfections (especially at the tip) will make the top go nuts.
The slow motion video is great.  More of them would be a great help to new guys like me.
Now, if I can only learn to keep the top upright in my hand....

Kirk
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kevinm

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2012, 04:49:39 PM »

Now, if I can only learn to keep the top upright in my hand....

Kirk

that is the fun part!
after playing with yoyos for years, getting the hang of catching and balancing a top is so wildly different, it is really chaotic compared to the way you yoyo (hopefully).
tops seem really alive. keep at it and you will get it quickly. Neff has some good tips on that if you search around on the site.
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Watts' Tops

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2012, 10:18:26 PM »

Another tip from Watts' Tops.
When I was learning to balance the top in my hand--I watched the top on the floor.  It would go around in circles getting smaller and smaller and finally stand up in one spot.  It did not need me to help it.  From this I made my hand like the floor. I provided a platform for the top to go around in circles by moving my had in the same direction as the top was going.  Being left handed that was clockwise.  By going faster than the floor, the top would stand up faster.  Slower, it would lay down.  Sounds sort of silly but it worked.  Now of course, it is so automatic that I do not think about it.
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ta0

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2012, 10:00:31 AM »

Kirk: congratulations on you first boomerang and welcome to the forum! 
One question: are you throwing by any chance a Duncan Ripcord or Bearing King with the original string?  I am asking because a string that is too short will explain:
Quote
found that a really smooth wind is important. Any imperfections (especially at the tip) will make the top go nuts.
With the correct string length you can throw hard and the top is forgiving.

Walt: that is a great visualization of how it works! And if fact, the reason why a top stands up while spinning of the floor is that the rolling of the tip speeds up the precession, the same you are doing by moving your hand.
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Kirk

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2012, 01:21:03 PM »

My main top is a spintastics sidewinder the string is about 5 feet.  It turns over well.  I have just gotten to where I can correct for a while.  After about 4 sec the top goes wild, wobbling at a rate too fast to correct for.  I think I may be over correcting and inducing the wobble.

Speaking of short strings,  I got 6 Imperials for a church family fun night. Each had a different length string. One was only 3 feet long!  Only 1 of the 6 was long enough to turn the top. :-( IMO  Duncan's Chinese vendor is saving a few cents and Duncan is frustrating new top throwers into giving up tops.  Sad.

Kirk
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Gustin Joss

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2012, 03:52:08 PM »

My main top is a spintastics sidewinder the string is about 5 feet.  It turns over well.  I have just gotten to where I can correct for a while.  After about 4 sec the top goes wild, wobbling at a rate too fast to correct for.  I think I may be over correcting and inducing the wobble.

Speaking of short strings,  I got 6 Imperials for a church family fun night. Each had a different length string. One was only 3 feet long!  Only 1 of the 6 was long enough to turn the top. :-( IMO  Duncan's Chinese vendor is saving a few cents and Duncan is frustrating new top throwers into giving up tops.  Sad.

Kirk

Ha! An unbiased observation supporting my argument.
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Jim

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Re: Can't catch the top.
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2012, 11:08:05 PM »

I should be able to catch it soon. I have got it in my hands a few times this weekend. I will try angling it down a bit see if I get more success.

Jim
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