Pro-Mark Sticks

SpinaDude

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I think I've tried a bunch of the major brands of drums sticks over the years. Vic Firth and Zildjian (I think they're one and the same), Regal Tip, Vater...oak and hickory. It doesn't matter. They all split in half on me relatively quickly. I'm lucky to get 2 hours of playing out of any of them. All except Pro-Mark. It takes a hell of a long time for them to break. They splinter and chip away, parts of them will peel off, but they just refuse to give up the ghost.

Does anyone know why Pro-Mark sticks are the only ones that last for me? Is there a special way they're manufactured? They always feel a little different to me than other sticks. They feel heartier...more dense. But I don;t know if that's just in my head.
 

lrod1707

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They definitely are harder. They are the only sticks I've seen that last forever. Like you said, they splinter and chip but don't break in half. They are hard as heck! And they've been that way as long as I can remember (late 80's). I've used them since then! They must use a different type of hickory or must have some process that hardens them more. For some reason Pro mark doesn't give any information on their manufacturing process. They do for the Firegrain model though which is even harder than the regular hickory ones. Unfortunately, I'm moving to other sticks because my hands are hurting. I tried their 5B's but they are way to heavy & feel like I'm holding bats. I also tried the forwards & rebound models with no luck. Went to Los Cabos 5B (Red hickory, also hard as heck) in the last few months and they felt good at the beginning but soon discovered that their 5B's are not thick enough. The hand pain continued. Pro Mark doesn't make anything anymore that will work for me!
 

SpinaDude

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I had he same issue (not tremendously, but enough to be careful) with the firegrain sticks. Too bad, because they feel really good otherwise.

I started using the Simon Phillips sticks recently. i really like them. I broke one today that I'd been playing for a while. It was like sawdust inside when it finally gave way. That was after 2 hours of die-cast rimshots And I'd played with them several times before.
 

DannyPattersonMusic

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I agree with Grooovepig, if you're breaking sticks that much you either need to work on your technique, drum/hi-hat/cymbal(s) positioning or use a different stick.

I've been playing for about 35 years and in my first years of playing would break sticks all the time, but in the last 20-25 years I've probably broke maybe 5 sticks (not pairs) total.
 

SpinaDude

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If you're only getting 2 hours of playing time with most brands of drumsticks, I suggest you get with a good teacher and work on your technique. Something is not right there.
I would HIGHLY recommend Joe Bergamini in Randolph, NJ.
Very interesting. Been that way since I was a kid. Than, you for the advice. Not something I would have ever considered.
 

Trey Gray

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If you're only getting 2 hours of playing time with most brands of drumsticks, I suggest you get with a good teacher and work on your technique. Something is not right there.
I would HIGHLY recommend Joe Bergamini in Randolph, NJ.
c'mon, that's just a silly statement. It really depends on the type of music you're playing etc etc....I've had a pair of wood sticks last me 3 arena shows playing very incorrectly and with bad technique and I've had a wood stick break when I'm playing softly on a snare drum to warm up...it's different for everyone, and so is wood....but one thing has always been consistent, my horrible technique...hopefully I can keep working on that though...just my 2 cents!

cheers and blessing Trey
 

Grooovepig

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c'mon, that's just a silly statement. It really depends on the type of music you're playing etc etc....I've had a pair of wood sticks last me 3 arena shows playing very incorrectly and with bad technique and I've had a wood stick break when I'm playing softly on a snare drum to warm up...it's different for everyone, and so is wood....but one thing has always been consistent, my horrible technique...hopefully I can keep working on that though...just my 2 cents!

cheers and blessing Trey
I don't think it's a silly statement at all. Nor was it a cheap shot at the OP who may very well be a fine player. Even Jojo Mayer in his DVD, Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer, said he used to break sticks all the time before he got his technique down. Now he rarely, if ever, breaks sticks.

The rigors of arena drumming vs practicing in the bedroom/ playing at a local club is hardly a fair comparison. I know Todd Suchermann breaks a fair amount of sticks, but like you said, he plays mostly arenas, and uses maple drum sticks, which will break sooner than they chip.
 

JDA

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Yea but you know what we can't adjust someone's playing over the internet- unless he wants to or is asking for it..
 

pwc1141

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Coming back to Pro-Mark, I have used the Micheal Carvin model for some years now and while they do wear down on the small ball tips after a while, never had one break on me.
 

JDA

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They feel heartier...more dense.
they're probably less dense- they give- flex- which helps.
Promark (to me) has an 'earthy' grain to them all the way thru diagonally like the wood fibers are raw.
They just don't make many/jazz/classical/ shapes/ that I can find easily/
733 Carvin/ Elvin Jazz/ 5A is about all I ever came across that I still have set out / active/ on the 'table of sticks'..

I guess they make a SD4 (or HD4) but I never saw it..
(grew up on 808 Billy Cobhams but I ain't 17 anymore) (still have a few of those 808 Billy Cobhams) (dark wood with gold lettering)
 
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Grooovepig

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Yea but you know what we can't adjust someone's playing over the internet- unless he wants to or is asking for it..
Yes, but the OP just said that his technique being the root cause of stick breakage hadn't occurred to him. There are many great resources available for one seeking this information. One would be the aforementioned private lessons route, Joe Bergamini, Tommy Igoe, Dave Elitch come to mind. Jojo Mayer, Jim Chapin, or Todd Suchermann's DVDs are also great resources.
 
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Trey Gray

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I don't think it's a silly statement at all. Nor was it a cheap shot at the OP who may very well be a fine player. Even Jojo Mayer in his DVD, Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer, said he used to break sticks all the time before he got his technique down. Now he rarely, if ever, breaks sticks.

The rigors of arena drumming vs practicing in the bedroom/ playing at a local club is hardly a fair comparison. I know Todd Suchermann breaks a fair amount of sticks, but like you said, he plays mostly arenas, and uses maple drum sticks, which will break sooner than they chip.
I was using this based on my own experience playing arenas...and I said I've NOT broken a stick playing with bad technique over 3 shows but have broken a stick warming up for a show...Maybe I wrote my statement wrong...sorry, it's the coffee talking..

now, with pro mark, has anyone else notice the change in some of the tips since becoming a part of D'Addario?

I still dig the oak sticks they make. the los cabos red hickory reming me of those as well and are kinda a cross between a wood tip and nylon, the best of both worlds in my opinion...but I have to wrap them for shock purposes
 

lrod1707

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Spinadude, have you tried the Ahead drumsticks? I hear they take a bit of getting used to but they might work to avoid the breakage.
 

lrod1707

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now, with pro mark, has anyone else notice the change in some of the tips since becoming a part of D'Addario?

I still dig the oak sticks they make. the los cabos red hickory reming me of those as well and are kinda a cross between a wood tip and nylon, the best of both worlds in my opinion...but I have to wrap them for shock purposes
I've used ProMark pre-D'Addario and never noticed a change. Maybe I just never really looked. I actually think they got better under D'Addario overall. And Los Cabos are fantastic but for me they have no sizes that currently work. The 5B feels like a 5A and the 2B is overkill. Nothing in between! Thumbs are starting to hurt again so thinner sized sticks aren't helping. I'd wrap the Los Cabos 5B but I hate how a wrapped stick feels.
 

Trey Gray

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I've used ProMark pre-D'Addario and never noticed a change. Maybe I just never really looked. I actually think they got better under D'Addario overall. And Los Cabos are fantastic but for me they have no sizes that currently work. The 5B feels like a 5A and the 2B is overkill. Nothing in between! Thumbs are starting to hurt again so thinner sized sticks aren't helping. I'd wrap the Los Cabos 5B but I hate how a wrapped stick feels.
yeah, the wrap takes some getting used too, and it's not all the same. the promark wrap to me is the best, almost "spongy" feeling...even when I use my ahead sticks I wrap them with the promark wrap...the other wraps seem to be thinner in my hands, which I'm sure is better for some people as well.
 

mpungercar

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This might come as a news flash to some folks, but metal is harder than wood. If you hit rim shots, all the time and you hit the edges of cymbals, you will eventually break a stick. It might take you a few years even, but all wooden sticks will break eventually. I don't care what technique you use.
 

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