This Friday we’re going to take a deeper look at one of the most versatile mounts in modern responsive play, the 1.5 stall. The 1.5 is one of the foundational string trick mounts, so as you can imagine there’s a metric ton of fun stuff to do with it. Here’s a small sampling of that fun stuff transposed with the bearing taken out:
Before we get goin’ on the fancy stuff, let’s take a quick refresher course on what the 1.5 mount is: named because it’s a logical midpoint between a trapeze (“1”) and a double-or-nothing (“2”), the 1.5 is a sidestyle undermount on the throw hand. Another way to look at it is as a sidestyle split-bottom mount – but now we’re getting carried away. As FF devotees should know by now, the main difference when converting a mount to a stall is considering the spin direction, and doing a traditional 1.5 mount in a stall format can be difficult because of the way that undermounts tend to twist up. I dodge this in the first trick by keeping my hands vertically oriented and getting out as soon as possible, but there are more elegant solutions as well.
My favorite 1.5 stall variation is probably the mount shown at the end of the next combo, where you cross your throw hand over top of your free hand and intersect the string with those fingers instead. As a general rule, stalling trapeze-style is always going to be easier than catching an undermount stall, and this little tough love combo is a good way to practice the hand crossing motion. Once you’re comfortable with the cross, it becomes second nature to enter 1.5 this way right out of a breakaway.
The next entrance that I use is debatably the hardest in the video, but also one of my favorite mounts of all time, so whatever you’re getting it! You’re welcome! Basically, after you learn the cross-armed 1.5, you take that and you do a double-or-nothing first, resulting in what looks like an insanely technical mount… that actually just uncrosses to a normal 1.5. This brilliant mount was initially discovered by Chris Neff (presumably back in ’98), but expanded into a repeater by Justin Weber. You can find an excellent breakdown of the repeater (and Zach’s reverse variation) in this Cabin Tutorial from CLYW. Catching it in a stall takes practice, mostly due to having to budget for extra string on the windup, but when you get it it feels awesome. Trust me. You can exit any way that you want, but one of my recent favorites (shown in the video) is to uncross, push out, and then cross over inside your arm for a quick shoot the moon regen out.
Now that we showed a tutorial Charles did of somebody else’s trick I’d like to teach a trick I made based on one of Charles’ moves. Say wha? Anyways… 27 seconds in, we got a move I’m calling “Chuckwagon”. You get that cross-armed 1.5 I’ve been talking about, then you perform a dump truck type motion, flipping the yo-yo back towards you and dismounting between your arms. From there, you continue into Charles’ “Smooth Double or Nothing Move” and catch it in a 2or0 stall. I like to dismount this by dropping the throwhand string, crossing my arms, and pushing the yo-yo down forcefully, which is something Steve Brown used to do with bearing yo-yos all the time around ’05 or so but gets extra points in fixed axle for giving you some hefty spin on the regeneration.
The next trick is a simple one – just a mount, really – but very useful for segueing between sidestyle and frontstyle. It’s like the cross-armed 1.5 mount we’ve been doing, but you point your throwhand towards your body, making it effectively a reverse split bottom mount. Seth Peterson, Yuuki Spencer, and Nate Sutter have all used this movement to great effect in gorilla style tricks, check them out for inspiration.
I figured we’d round out the cross-armed 1.5 section with some behind the back silliness. Catching a stall behind your back requires you to move fast and be a little flexible, but other than that isn’t too different from the normal one. In this trick, I like to follow the dismount by turning my body and catching the yo-yo in my freehand tough love style. If you leave yourself enough room in the string, you can move it over your shoulder and now the trick is no longer behind your back! Magic, or maybe just a goofy looking rotation, but either way a fun move that can’t be performed in a traditional spinning trick. As always, bonus points for ending in a thumb mount.
BRIEF KENDAMA INTERMISSION: Have you ever tried catching a lighthouse on an imperial yo-yo? My favorite modder Takeshi Kamisato chopped up this gorgeous Duncan Tournament and the shape really inspired me.
Okay, back to the yo-yos. The first lesson I’d like to teach you is that you should play off every mistake with a spin move. Trust me! It’ll confuse your enemies and make you feel better. Moving on to the actual trick, though, we have a cousin to the cross-armed 1.5 we were doing earlier, that’s… actually, it’s also a cross-armed 1.5. Huh. The critical difference is that this time you cross your throw hand underneath the free hand, which lets you do this Kwijibo-esque pop to double-or-nothing. I tend to find the other entrance a little easier, but there are distinct uses for each and I encourage playing around with both.
I ended the video with another weird kendama/yo-yo fusion trick. It’s definitely more yo-yo inspired, but it is fun getting to play around with the spike and clicky-clack the yo-yo a bit at the end. Never fear, yo-yo purists! The first step where you hold the yo-yo and rotate your hand around it before the proper throw does not require you to touch our dreaded rival skilltoy… also, kendamas are pretty fun? So, y’know, whatever.
Thanks to Takeshi for the super cool Tournament & ’80s Butterfly, and to CLYW & Yoyonews for the hat. Also, if you like the music, you can download it on my soundcloud. Tell us what tricks you’re working on this Friday in the comments below!