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Tom Kuhn

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Nojive Diamond

A rare maple version of the Tom Kuhn Diamond Special.

Dr. Tom Kuhn is a San Francisco dentist who has been making yo-yos since the 1970's. Once a neighborhood Duncan yo-yo champion in 1955, he hadn't played in years when he was given a wooden yo-yo as a gift. When it broke, he set out to create an improved yo-yo, starting a second career which carries on to this day. He is the creator of the No Jive 3-in-1, the first modular yo-yo, the Silver Bullet, the first full-metal yo-yo, and its successor, the Silver Bullet 2 (SB-2), the first metal ball bearing yo-yo. Originally, Tom produced yo-yos in his own San Francisco workshop, but over the years more of his yo-yos have been produced in collaboration with other companies, first Hummingbird, and most prominently What's Next Mfg. where his yo-yos were made starting in 1995.

In 1979, Tom Kuhn created the Big Yo, a working 256-pound scaled-up version of the No Jive 3-in-1. This earned him a spot in the Guiness Book of World Records for the largest yo-yo.

In 1984, Tom taught astronaut David Griggs how to yo-yo for NASA's "Toys in Space" experiment (though Griggs had to use a Duncan Imperial since Kuhn's wood yo-yos of the time didn't meet NASA's requirements for fire safety) and in 1992, another astronaut, Jeffrey Hoffman, played with an aluminum SB-2 aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis (video) .

In 1999, Tom introduced his patented Turbo Discs (a linen response pad system), and began including it with all of his ball bearing yo-yos (with the exception of the SB-4).

However, in recent years, with the yo-yo industry moving away from fixed axle yo-yos to unresponsive ball bearing models, Dr. Kuhn's product line is experiencing a downturn.

Yo-yos Produced

Fixed Axle

*=Not to be confused for the YoYoJam Big Yo

Ball Bearing Axle

Achievements

1998

External Links

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