Guide to Drum Sticks

Drum Stick : What is it?

Drum Sticks

Drum sticks are the beaters used in percussion instruments like drums. They consist of a long handle made of wood, aluminum, or plastic, and a rounded head made of wood, nylon, acrylic, or metal. They are used to hit the drums to produce strong, pounding beats. They come in snare, mallet, and brush types.

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Types of Drum Sticks

Drum SticksDrum Sticks

Kinds of Drum Sticks include the following:

Snare drum sticks

  • Snare drum sticks can be made of genuine wood such as hard maple, oak, and hickory, or synthetic materials such as carbon fiber, aluminum, and fiberglass.
  • Standard snare drum sticks are approximately 41 centimeters long with a diameter of 1.5 centimeters.
  • They are commonly used in stage, orchestral, and street performances.

Drum mallets

  • Drum mallets are specialized drum sticks composed of a thin shaft and a head.
  • They are used to change the instrument's timbre.
  • Thicker and softer drum mallets are used to produce low registers, while the thinner and harder ones are used to create high registers.
  • Wrapped drum mallets made with acrylic, kelon, or nylon heads are used for vibraphones and marimbas.
  • Unwrapped drum mallets made of wood, brass, or acrylic are used for xylophones and glockenspiels.
  • They are used in pairs or in fours.

Drum brushes

  • Drum brushes are used for creating sound and texture effects that cannot be done by drum sticks or mallets.
  • They consist of thin bristles attached to a handle made of aluminum or wood.
  • The handles are rubber-coated for maximum grip.
  • The bristles are made of plastic or metal. They move freely in the form of a rounded fan.
  • They are available in telescoping types where the bristles retract to the hollow in the handle.

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Choosing Drum Sticks (Buying tips)

Sleeves: Choose aluminum snare drum sticks coated in durable PVC sleeves for protection from scratches, dents, and serious damage caused by continuous hitting.

Stick “feel”: Consult your drum stick manufacturer for the best drum stick type that can produce the sound you want. Sound quality can be affected by the drum sticks' material, shape, weight, density, grain, and size.

Use: Choose thin and lightweight drum sticks for maximum control and speed. Look for a pair with a small diameter for use in orchestral performances. If you intend to use them for a marching band or a drum corps, choose heavy and thick drum sticks.

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