How long do your drumsticks last?

It's time to discuss drum accessories.

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insaneshayne
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:22 am

Wow, I wish I could make a pair of sticks last months! It's rare a pair of sticks makes it through a gig. Generally during rehearsals a pair will make it two practice sessions if I'm lucky, but gigs claim one-two sticks minimum. It depends on the stick though. I've broken brand-new sticks on the click-off before so not all sticks are created equal....

Yes, I hit hard. Oh well. I buy 'em a couple bricks at a time so that saves a couple bucks.

They're Vic Firth American Metal (or the old "Rock Crusher" size) so they're pretty large sticks as well.

But hey, if you live in the states you're lucky! In Amsterdam a pair of 2B Vic Firth (or Promark) sticks costs 15 Euros (that's like $18+/-!!!!!! So the $6 per pair I'm paying doesn't seem so bad! But if you're going to tour Europe, bring a good supply with you!

Hey, but someone up above posted something about when you break just one stick and then the sticks are "mis-matched" after that: This is common if you just grab a handful of "the same" sticks off the shelf and don't go through each one. Generally a pair is weight matched at the factory, but there is apparently a large range of acceptable weights that they let pass. One easy way around this that I've done is by special ordering the sticks from Guitar Center by the dozen, I'll specify that the entire brick is "heavy" and Vic Firth will actually make a brick that all the sticks are VERY close to the same weight. For the past 5-6 years this has worked for me. Before that it was a crapshoot with me at GC just going through sticks picking ones that felt right....
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clatterdrums
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:35 am

I switched to ahead sticks about 4 years ago because I was going through so many wood sticks, and I wanted to use something more sustainable. Of course, the refining of metals and petroleum products to make ahead sticks may be more of a step sideways than forward on the path to sustainability. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
BlastBeaterX
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:42 am

I use A-head drumsticks for gigs, and regular wood sticks for practice so the A-heads typically last me 6-8 months
BlastBeaterX
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:49 am

clatterdrums wrote:I switched to ahead sticks about 4 years ago because I was going through so many wood sticks, and I wanted to use something more sustainable. Of course, the refining of metals and petroleum products to make ahead sticks may be more of a step sideways than forward on the path to sustainability. Anyone have any thoughts on this?


I honestly think the Aheads are awesome, your cymbals will last way longer with these sticks..I havn't cracked or broken a cymbal in over 4 years with these babies, plus once they get worn out you can replace the parts that are tearing apart. :)
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clatterdrums
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 11:58 am

BlastBeaterX wrote:
clatterdrums wrote:I switched to ahead sticks about 4 years ago because I was going through so many wood sticks, and I wanted to use something more sustainable. Of course, the refining of metals and petroleum products to make ahead sticks may be more of a step sideways than forward on the path to sustainability. Anyone have any thoughts on this?


I honestly think the Aheads are awesome, your cymbals will last way longer with these sticks..I havn't cracked or broken a cymbal in over 4 years with these babies, plus once they get worn out you can replace the parts that are tearing apart. :)


I hit pretty hard, and typically break one cymbal a year. The sticks last me right at two years before they snap. I'm able to get quite a bit of milage out of the wrap, and I've never broken a tip. I just have to replace the sleeves about once a month or so.
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 12:04 pm

in 4 years i've only broke one stick, but i use wood tips and those last me a few months, depends and how much set time i'm getting in
After I funked my drumset at 11 o'clock, i rocked it all night long, and then we swung til the early morning, where I jazzed all over it. The next day my drumset and i did a little reggae, then shuffled, made a little salsa, and then waltzed.
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SmellsLikeIan
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 12:36 pm

I use wood tip vic firth 5a and they last about 3-4 weeks (give or take a week, depending on my schedule and the stick itself). I usually don't break them as I am not a big guy or a hard hitter, but I replace them after the tips chip too much. I did purchase 2 pairs of Zildjian 5a dip, and broke 1 stick out of both pair in one gig! I almost never break sticks, and while I am a fan of Zildjian cymbals, I will not be buying any more of their sticks.
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 12:47 pm

usually my sticks last untill i get mad at them, but other than that about 3 weeks- 5 months
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 1:40 pm

please teach me the way to make a pair of stick last months...i use pro-mark 747 rock with a natural finish and a stick would probably last 3 hearty jam sessions, when i play live 2 or 3 are guarenteed to break. the head fall apart if they last a week and nylon tips fly everywhere so i dont mess with them. if a stick is to last a month, it would be widdled away thin as a tooth pick.

Once i went and saw dan carey play in tool live...oh god, broken sticks flying everywhere.
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 2:48 pm

I use Neil Peart's signature japan oak sticks, and I play drums like its going out of style, and they usually last about 2-2 1/2 months.
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 2:52 pm

I used to use these almighty unbreakable sticks, then they broke, not sure what they were made out of, felt kind of like graphite or something, but anyways i got a 2 year warranty on them when i bought them then after they were sold out, the company went out of business. It only took me about 3 months to break them both at the same exact time, i hit 2 different cymbals and about an inch off the top of each stick broke off, it was a sad day.
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Post Tue Jan 02, 2007 6:38 pm

gipson wrote:please teach me the way to make a pair of stick last months...i use pro-mark 747 rock with a natural finish and a stick would probably last 3 hearty jam sessions, when i play live 2 or 3 are guarenteed to break. the head fall apart if they last a week and nylon tips fly everywhere so i dont mess with them. if a stick is to last a month, it would be widdled away thin as a tooth pick.

Once i went and saw dan carey play in tool live...oh god, broken sticks flying everywhere.



Use vic firths, or ahead. thats all I use. while vic firths are a slight bit heavier than others like zildjian there're very strong.I had a pair of jack de johnette's last a year once. I love aheads but you cant play with them cold other wise they will snap. garuntee after a while. warm them up in your hands or somthing untill there're warm enough.
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David Stanoch
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Post Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:51 am

I prefer wood tip sticks (my tonal preference) and am happy to be at a point in my playing where I can say they usually "die of old age" (the tips go soft) before I snap them. This is because I've learnt a great deal over the years about how the sticks are an extension of our bodies and how a looser fulcrum and good stick, finger, wrist, forearm, elbow-to-shoulder and rebound control makes it easier to play more resonantly, loosely, powerfully and clearly whether I'm loud or soft, wide or tight, clean or sloppy.

Also, I took the advice of Omar Hakim from years ago & use the "right sticks" for the "right job." I have small, medium and large sticks in my bag for any type of room w/any type of band. They can last for years quite honestly! When recording however, I prefer a fresh pair of sticks for clarity on tape (unless I need a "mushy/dirty smeared sound" and then the softer tips are cool... )

I go through brushes faster than I go through sticks! (LOL!!)

Play On!!!
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Post Wed Jan 03, 2007 2:15 pm

devilspain wrote:depends im either lucky or not. ive got some drums sticks have had for at least a year now. but then im not a heavy hitter. also have been unlucky bought a pair of sticks and broke them in less than a week. so prob just bad wood in one pair.


one thing i do hate is breaking one stick. aand then having about 4 5 sticks that are odd. :( lol. anyone else get that?


yeah i get that too, i used to keep them and use the broken stick with a pair on my electric kit (would damage skins on acoustic) but iv gotten rid of that kit now, i guess they make good firewood...

iv had some really unlucky pairs, one that broke first time played, hate it when that happens, though since iv moved from zildjian to vic firth, that hasnt happened, maybe just zildjian not as ruthless at stick quality as vic firth, i dunno
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Post Thu Jan 04, 2007 2:45 am

Wood sticks last me about 2 practices, I do a lot of accidental rimshots. I use AHEADS, and they last about 3 months each.
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