More love for Rich Sticks

(Kb)

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Hey all - just thought I'd (over)share my findings with my first order of Rick Sticks...

I've searched for a while for a model I don't have to think about, and got close with Vic Firth models from Stanton Moore (hate the tip) and Jack Dejohnette (Ugh slippery white paint), so I ordered a few Rich models in comparable sizes with different tips to see what's what.

First impression: The flex is real. Even on a pad right out of the box, the give in these sticks was palpable and thoroughly enjoyable. I even did several "blind grabs" out of a pile of sticks, to avoid confirmation bias. The easiest way to experience the difference is a few press rolls. It's amazing how stiff the Vics feel by comparison (on cymbals, pad, everywhere) and interesting to pick out the few Vic pairs that felt almost as good, versus the ones that were really stiff.

Tip & Taper size: The acorn tip is a little larger than I'd hoped, kind of a cross between a standard Vic acorn and the larger, more oval Pro Mark-style tip. Really like the bebop tip more than I expected! The barrels sounded great, but both pair I received are more front-weighted than I like. Not sure if it's a symptom of the tip being more concentrated at the end of the stick, or just a small, unlucky sample size. The taper seems a touch more gradual on the Rich models, and it doesn't get quite as skinny where it meets the tip.

Tip Sound: I did blind tests on two very different, jazzy ride cymbals, and in both cases the Rich 8A barrel and bebop tips beat out several others: Rich 5A barrel, Rich 5A acorn, Vic Stanton, Vic Dejohnette, Vic 5A, Zildjian Antonio Sanchez. The larger Rich models sounded nice, but weren't as articulate. Looking forward to trying the bebop tip on a slightly larger stick.

Weights (in grams):
VF Stanton: 53/53 - 56/55 - 50/49 - 52/52 - 53/52 (.550 - 16.25")
VF Dejohnette: 59/60 - 50/51 (.565 - 16.3125")
VF 5A: 48/48 (.565 - 16")
Rich 8A Bop: 48/49 (.550 - 16.25")
Rich 8A Barrel: 48/49 (.550 - 16.25")
Rich 5A Acorn: 52/54 (.565 - 16.375")
Rich 5A Barrel: 54/55 (.565 - 16.375")

Attaching two photos:
First: Tip and taper on (L to R) Vic Stanton, DeJohnette, 5A, and Rich 5A Acorn
Second: Added in Rich barrel and bebop between VF models and 5A Acorn.

Overall
Really love the way the sticks sound and feel. Can't get the 5A Acorns out of my hands even with the larger tip... hoping the same size in bebop will be the answer. So cool that length can be customized. A little bummed about the balance of the barrel tip models I received, but whether that's typical or anomaly, they'll find a home somewhere.
 

jaymandude

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Thanks for this. I almost ordered last week. I'm in the habit of customizing my sticks by making them shorter, so you info does help.

Interesting comment about the front weighted barrels. maybe a longer taper would help ? Like on the bebop stick ?
 

Rich Sticks LLC

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Wow! This was a very informative review like no other that I've ever read. This is why I love this forum. Everyone on here is very honest and informative and it helps when reviewing a small, newer brand like Rich Sticks.

Due to the added moisture content, our sticks do have some forgiveness / flex to them that isn't found in other brands that dry their wood to half of our moisture content. You can really feel this flex in the thinner models that you have tried and this flex also helps to reduce grain breaks and increase rebound so that you don't have to work as hard.

Interesting that you mention the balance difference in your 8A Barrel. Know that the tapers are the same length and the neck diameters are the same from ball, barrel, acorn, nylon and oval. The only exception is with bebop. The bebop tip is so unique that in order for them to balance the way we want them to, the neck diameters are different than the other tips. As far as your barrel tips go, there is a little more material on the tip but this shouldn't be enough to really notice a difference. Often at times, the barrel tip doesn't come off the heads or cymbal like the other tips do and that makes the barrel tipped sticks a little slower. Often because the barrel tipped sticks don't come back as fast, most interpret that slow movement as a difference in balance even though the specs are the same as the other tips. Or maybe you got a wonky pair of sticks...LOL. It happens.
 

(Kb)

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Yeah, things got a little empirical :) As much as possible with just four pairs of sticks... A little ironic, given that it's all about feel!

I'm inclined to think the two barrel models just happened to be balanced similarly to the front. Neither is a bad pair of sticks by any means, just too forward for me, given I'm being this particular.

Thanks for the reply Joshua! Really looking forward to my second order.
 

agogobil

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I've been using the 3A's for a while now ... enough to notice that the tips haven't chipped yet, where all others would have had this problem by now.

And yes, the feel, or "give" is perfect, IMO. Me likey mucho mucho.

Whenever these things wear out, I'll be back.
 

NYFrank

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I haven't been here in a while. I saw this thread and immediately had to jump in.

I have been using Rich Sticks for some time now, and I truly believe they are the best sticks I ever played. Long lasting, and being able to dial size and weight to what *I* want has been an incredible experience. Worth every penny and then some.
 

"poppies"

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It's really hard to use other sticks after getting used to Rich Sticks, feels like playing with steel rods!
 

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