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Thread: Choosing drumsticks?

  1. #1

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    Default Choosing drumsticks?

    Can anyone explain to me their preferences in drumsticks. Looking around as a novice and not being near any music stores, what's the difference between wood tipped & nylon tipped sticks - is it just a personal preference or is there another reason why you'd use one or the other at different times?

    Great site by the way - another reason for my wife to hassle me for spending too much time on the computer...

    Jamie.

  2. #2

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    Jaime, there is a wide variety of stick out there and the best thing to do is to buy a pair, here and there, and just play with different ones until you begin to understand what you want. I've been playing for about 2 1/2 years now (obviously not nearly the "expert" that others are), but I have begun to sort out what I like and what I don't like. The sticks are rated by a number and lettering system, and the most common sticks are the 2B (a fat, heavy stick), the 5B (a good medium multi-purpose stick), the 5A (essentially the same as the 5B, but a little thinner), and the 7A (a lighter stick that is most commonly used for Jazz). As for the nylon vs. wood tips, the opinions will vary, but when you think about cymbal play, the nylon tip will give a brighter, clear sound, while the wood tip gives a warmer sound when playing the cymbal. The choice of stick really depends on what feels right in your hands, and what type of music you are playing.
    Also, if your hands tend to sweat when you play, a stick with less finish on it can be easier to hold on to, or you can use a stick wrap to give you a better grip.

    Hope that helps.
    Quoting gonefishin: Just have some bacon with ya when you go pick her up..........youre an instant chick magnet.


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  3. #3

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    nylon tips produces crisp tones, they're great for cymbals, and the tips are more durable then wood.

    ive used a few different types of stick.
    i started using Promark 747n. its a 16.5 inch ish long stick, it has a diameter of about .580, and a nylon tip.
    then i started using Vic Firth X5A. very similar in length, and a little thinner. the X5A are a little heavier than the original 5A stick.
    im currently using Vater Power 5A. Power 5As' are also a little heavier than the 5As'.
    they are also around 16.5 inches long, and .580 diameter.
    for some reason i prefer a stick in the 5A class. it seems to fit me.

    i play "rock" and will soon be doing some session work with my uncle and his friends, but when i do im gonna take sticks with different tips so i can find out what stick sound will fit the type of music they play.

    i noticed you said you dont have a music store near you, neither do i. so whenever i got to the nearest music store(45 min away) i spend some time there sampling other stick. there are multiple factors you have to look at with drumsticks;
    diameter, length, straightness, wood type, tip type, density, and the most important...how the stick feels to YOU!

    sorry i kinda went on a rant. but anywho i hope this helps.

  4. #4

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    Don't worry about the rant - it's all good! Thanks pb & mcramer, I live about 4 hours drive from Sydney, but am there usually every couple of weeks, so I'll hook into a few pairs while I'm there later this week...

    Jamie.

  5. #5

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    simple and short:
    start with 5A, to big for ya? go 7A
    if 5A was too small for ya go 5B

    dont worry about nylon/wood tips or signature sticks till you start feeling comfortable tapping on everything.

  6. #6

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    Excellent advice El-kevo!
    Quoting gonefishin: Just have some bacon with ya when you go pick her up..........youre an instant chick magnet.


    Drum Bum: Gifts for Drummers

    Cool Drummer T-shirts and Drum Accessories!

  7. #7

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    Thank you all once again - I'll take that advice. I'll be dropping in on The Drum Shop in Newcastle sometime next week to get some bits & pieces, including stix.

    Jamie.

  8. #8

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    Get the Danny Carey sticks, I love em.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by JOX View Post
    Get the Danny Carey sticks, I love em.
    My drum teacher uses those too, and he asked me to try them because my grip will usually slip down to the end of the stick. I tried them and they are great.

  10. #10

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    man you guys and all your hi tech named sticks and stuff. here in the pacific northwest we just wonder out into the forest find two branches about the same size then gnaw on them until they match. so right now Im using lodgpole pine with dog chew enhanced grips..

    truethfully im a pretty brand newbie drummer I have a set of 5a's and a set of zildjian purple diped 5a, 5b and super 5b.. the supers are huge I just use the 5a's but Its nice to have a few to get the feel. and I am really starting to like the dip.. now if they just did it in green.

  11. #11

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    TT, I remember passing thru Klamath Falls in the middle of the night on an Amtrak train some years ago... I should have picked up some sticks off the forest floor when I had the chance!

    Thanks for all the tips though, much appreciated.

    Jamie.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Toad View Post
    man you guys and all your hi tech named sticks and stuff. here in the pacific northwest we just wonder out into the forest find two branches about the same size then gnaw on them until they match. so right now Im using lodgpole pine with dog chew enhanced grips..

    truethfully im a pretty brand newbie drummer I have a set of 5a's and a set of zildjian purple diped 5a, 5b and super 5b.. the supers are huge I just use the 5a's but Its nice to have a few to get the feel. and I am really starting to like the dip.. now if they just did it in green.
    Tin Toad;
    You're a true rebel, my man, I like that!
    Over the years I've learned a lot of make shift also to get the job done. DuctTape is my friend!

    But drumsticks? I showed a kid one time plastic tubes work well also.
    Well now I'm playing out again the 2 sticks I have 1 short and the other you can play around the corner with.
    I must get new ones soon!
    Most Important!
    I will look close at the wood grain itself!
    Thats why the sticks I have left are about 10 years old...
    Play to win my friend, and make sure you see you won in the eyes of others not that of your own, then truly you've won...

  13. #13

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    Default Re: Choosing drumsticks?

    When you're experimenting with size, remember not to just grab the lightest ones because you fly with them, think about power, control, and duribility as well. As far as tips, your preference might change. Last week I thought I loved wood tips but I've really been digging the nylon tips I'm using at the moment. Drumsticks are important, but don't worry too much about them.

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