Oak Sticks

hsosdrum

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I tried oak sticks back when they were first available in the '60s or '70s but hated the forward balance and especially hated how stiff they felt and how they transmitted the shock back to my hands.
 

bodinski

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I keep coming back to oak 707s, round nylon tips. The weight just feels right. PM has changed the tips a bit in recent years though & I find they tend to break before the stick wears out, sometimes rather quickly. I dig the wood-tip Shaughnessys too, but on most rides the nylon sounds best to me.
 

KevinD

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Didn't one of the drumstick manufacturers (Pro Mark maybe?) introduce oak sticks with hard rubber or plastic "shock absorbers" in the butt end of the sticks? (this was prob in the 90s).
I think I had a pair and one of the shock absorbers cracked..so much for that.
 

itsjjp

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The only oak sticks I have played are NP Signature Pro-Mark and I'm not a fan. I don't like the weight, the feel or sound on my cymbals.
 

Mcjnic

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Pretty much all I play is Oak.
Jazz wood and nylon, 7A wood and nylon, 5A wood and nylon, and a few other.
Years ago, I got fed up with three to five stick shows. I broke sticks every few songs.
I switched to Oak and actually made it through a show. I went full Oak after that.
Oddly enough, I never thought to return to Hickory now that I don't regularly play shows.
I may have to grab some Hickory sticks and revisit them.

Added a shot of my kid doing his job. He used to pick up the broken sticks after a show.
He grabbed five or six this night. Those are the old Weckl sticks. Great feel. Didn't last long, though.
They would crack along the shank pretty quickly.

broken sticks.jpg


8723F32E-7B8F-47B2-8982-DFD0E267ACFC.jpeg
 
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Kevinpursuit

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Don’t like oak sticks for the mere reason they leave saw dust behind when stricking rim shots and rim accents etc..
Hickory works for me.
 

CC Cirillo

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I was using Vic Firth and breaking about one stick a show so I switch to Promark with about the same loss rate.

I could live with that, but what was really bothering me was that the wood tips would splinter pretty quickly.

This is when I discovered Pro Mark Shira Kashi and I’ve been using both the 5A and the Jazz series. The tips last a long time and I like their sound on the cymbals.
I too notice more vibrations to my hands, but I’ve been trying to modify my playing to loser style to adapt to the stick rather than expecting to stick to adapt my hands.

Funny thing is, now that I’ve spent some time using oak sticks and having the benefit of longer life and mechanical feedback on my playing style, I’m toying with going back to hickory.
 

JDA

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really three volume applications
in ascending order

maple
hickory
oak

with the proviso
you can be soft or loud
with any
just a general guide

'the volume' being how each stick material
excites what you're striking
(sounds kinky eh..

Birch (sticks) somewhere between maple and hickory
not familiar with Ash (sticks)
 

JDA

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tell it to Ed Shaughnessy

which would probably work being he's 6ft (under)
he did it for volume
I guarantee it
(his situations) (bigband)

I like overdriving Maple
when I can
(get away with it)
which is 99.999% of the time

I just like how maple "treats"
the drums, cymbals, everything
it strikes/touches
a very pleasurable experience
(total kink)
 
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stinkingbadges

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I used the ProMark Oak 5A back in the day. They would shatter pretty easily playing rimshots. I played a lot harder back then as my drums were not miked.
Beauty sticks though.
 

Corbin L Douthitt

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?breaking sticks? 4/5 a show? I still have sticks from the 1960’s- warped with age. I have about 8 sticks on the floor at church.(24 years) Tips broken. But we have a young drummer that fills in. I wear out sticks. Sand the neck down when it gets rough. Eventually the tip breaks after a few years. Oak Jazz. Quit using nylon tips. I don’t feel the shock sponen of. Maybe I don’t slam the drums and rimshot every stroke?
 

JohnnyVibesAZ

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I tried my first oak sticks, the Promark Peewee, when I was a kid. I loved the feel of oak, and thought they bounced better than the other woods. My all-time favorite was the 3D. It was 13.5" long and had an acorn tip. Later, they made a 3A. Now, the closest of that stick they make to the 3D is the new 5A Rebound; also a heavier 5A Forward. They are both 16" long. Wish I could cleanly cut off a half-inch, to make them shorter.
 

kevmill70

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Good morning!

I was in my local shop the other day and they had a couple pair of Pro-Mark Oak 808's...these were the first drumsticks I bought, the Cobham Golden Oak version, in 1978 at my local mall mom and pop piano shop.

If you look back at some 70's catalogs, Oak sticks were pretty common. I know you can still get them through Tama at least and of course Pro-Mark still makes a variety. Firth did a 5A/B for a while as well.

Why do you think they're not as common as they used to be? These are definitely stinging my hands, glad I have some wrap...ha!

Cheers and blessings, Trey
I had oak sticks in the 80s. They last forever and then, without warning, snap in half, usually at sharp angles, leaving stick shards flying towards your head. Also, I broke cymbals and they were very hard on the hands. In the 35+ years since I switched to hickory, I've only cracked one cymbal and that was because of a low monitor mix that tricked me into me playing harder.
 

Cauldronics

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I'm reminded by the mention of birch sticks, that I want to try the Zildjian birch. Seems like they'd be a little more flexible than hickory (and way more than oak) but have similar durability. This might yield a slightly more whip to the feel.

There are also beech sticks, which I didn't know existed. I'd try them because, -beech-.

zildjian birch .png
Innovative Percussion beech sticks.png
 

FlowTom

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Hopefully any beech sticks are made of European beech, as domestic beech can be pretty miserable material.
I always wanted to rive some straight grain oak stick blanks, air dry them, and send them in to get turned. Or turn them myself. Same with ash.
I don't know how the stick companies buy their oak. But oak can sometimes be mishandled in the commercial sawing and drying process.
I tried Japanese white oak sticks. The wood was well chosen and they felt OK but I didn't care for how they sounded.
 

halldorl

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Don’t like oak sticks for the mere reason they leave saw dust behind when stricking rim shots and rim accents etc..
Hickory works for me.
My experience is the opposite. Hickory gets chewed up very fast but the Oak sticks I use last a lot longer.
 

pedro navahas

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I remember back in the late 70’s a girlfriend gave me a pair of sticks for Christmas, they were Promark. All I remember is that they were Japanese white oak.
At the time I was playing a thick Regal Tip and didn’t think I would like the promark but they were great sticks, loved the feel.
 


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