Reviews: FEGVE Fidget Top
I'm always looking for the next interesting fidget toy design. Something novel, or at least a bit different. This led me to FEGVE's Fidget Top. A combination fidget spinner and spinning top from China sold through Spinner Hub. About 6 weeks after placing my order, and waiting for my package to clear customs, it arrived in my hot little hands. After a few weeks getting acquainted with this dual spinner, here are my impressions.
The Fidget Top is actually a really sharp looking fidget toy. That's what initially drew me to it. Sometimes we see an image of a spinner and have a sort of...I don't want to say visceral reaction to it, because I think maybe that's overstating it, but a knee-jerk reaction? I think that conveys the right amount of enthusiasm. I liked it's looks. The Fidget Top is made of a central housing system that holds two bearings at either end each held in place by a retention screw and covered by two stainless steal buttons when in it's fidget spinner form. A tool for the retention screw is included. The body is surrounded by 6 stainless steel plates. Four slender plates cover the middle and 2 thicker slices bookend the spinner giving it a see-through look which is slick. The plates are held in place with 12 brass pins that can be substituted out for tritium vials to give it a wicked glow in the dark effect whie spinning. This is really cool in theory, but I was provided no instructions on how to disassemble the spinner to replace the brass spins and the video on the sales page only shows a breakdown of the spinner at warp speed. I spent about a total of 2 minutes pulling and twisting this thing to no avail, so I'm sure there's a way, just elusive to a simpleton like me. Perhaps provide a little more instruction nonetheless. The almost full circle body has two small indentations on either side to provide some sort of leverage for spins, though I didn't find they helped much. Despite this, the Fidget Top is a very well machined fidget. It looks and feels high-end.
The buttons screws together using a long center screw to span the length of the 1" body and are almost flat on top. They provide very little grip, but I didn't find that to be much of a problem given this isn't a spinner you're generating a lot of torque on your spins with. One button can be replaced by a half metal ball to convert the Fidget Top into a spinning top. To get this to act as a top, you hold the spinner by one button and the metal ball acting as a button on the other end and spin it as you would a fidget spinner. The idea is then to drop it on a surface and it spins like a top. I'll get to how well that works out below.
The Fidget Spinner
Here's where the real problems begin for me. I don't know whether it's the double bearing design, the almost perfect circle body, the 1" thickness of the spinner or...it almost feels like the bearings are lubed. In a bad way. It's just an extremely tight spin. There is almost no feedback when it's spinning. And for me, that really takes all of the pleasure out of the spin. Additionally, it's a bit awkward to hold the 1" thick spinner. It doesn't feel quite as natural as a regular spinner. It's very low on the fidgetability scale. And, with all of the weight completely around that 1" core, you're not going to get this to spin for longer than 1 minute. So, we have a spinner that neither excels at fidgeting or long spins.
The Spinning Top
I will say that I really do like this wrinkle. It's just not executed well. In order to get this to spin like a top, while holding the spinner perpendicular to the table, you have to slide your hand away (sort of like the magician swiping the tablecloth off the table) and let the spinner land ball first on a surface. This is certainly possible, but not that easy to accomplish. It's just a little clunky. Sometimes the ball doesn't hit square and it trips itself up. Even when you get it to land flush, you're not going to get much more than 30 seconds of the Fidget Top actually spinning. Spinning on a half of a metal ball just doesn't work that well. I did find that the smoother the surface, the easier it was to get this thing spinning. No surprise there.
The FEGVE Fidget Top excels neither as a fidget spinner or a spinning top. It is certainly innovative though. I do like the thought of a fidget spinner converting into a spinning top, but it's clumsy and often ineffective to try and slide your hand from underneath to get an even drop and smooth spin. I'm not sure how to remove the pins holding the body together to replace them with tritium vials, nor am I really interested. More instruction should be provided with the product. The 12x speed showcase video on the purchase page is unhelpful at best. As a fidget spinner, the perfectly balanced circular double bearing design gives a smooth and steady spin. But that complete lack of feedback means you barely even know you're holding something that's spinning. And there's no real spin points on the body to fidget with the Fidget Top. So, while I do appreciate the effort and the design, I'm not a fan of the final product.
As a final note, I do think this design is derivative of the stuff Eclipse Sharp does in its basic fidget spinner form. Also, I have no idea what FEGVE stands for.