Sticks-do you break them?

Matched Gripper

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I can’t remember ever breaking a stick. I wear them down before they break.

PS: I have chipped barrel shaped tips several times, and had nylon tips break off. That’s not what I think of as breaking a stick. And, I do play plenty of rimshots on left hand shuffles and accents, but not very often on backbeats.
 
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cruddola

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I started playing in 1982. For the first ten years in broke a fair amount of sticks. Usually at the tip/shank area. Once in a while I would break in the middle or by the grip but usually that was due to defective grain. Most of all when my sticks break now it is from internal fracture like a pool cue. I never break them the normal way anymore. Have you seen anything similar in your time playing drums. I can definitely seen a dropoff with refinement in my technique over the years. I also use much lighter sticks than I did 30 years ago. Nowadays, a 5a is probably the heaviest I use.
I haven't broke a stick since Zildjian came out with the Mangini model. That last me a long, long, l o n g time! I bought about five dozen pairs. I also like the Aquarian 5B. Bought a ton of them. I've always liked heavier sticks. In high school I remember playing a jazz gig with my baseball bat-sized parade drum sticks. That's all that was in my kit!
 

fusseltier

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I've only broken 1 stick 40 years ago, but that was due to the grain.
I've still got promark sticks over 35 years old i still use.
I've only broken 1 head in 45 years.
I don't beat the crap out of my equipment. I play at the level needed and not more.
 

Vicey

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To me this question is tantamount to asking 1) how many rim shots do you play and 2) do you retire your sticks when they begin to wear or use them until they can no longer function as sticks?
 

Rufus T Firefly

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When I was young I was in a power trio and we often didn't have enough channels to mic much more than the kick. So back then to be heard, I broke a lot of sticks and split the top ply of a lot of emperors (if I didn't change them often enough). Since then I've always had adequate amplification when necessary and it's not an issue anymore.

I do play a lot of rim shots so I wear out sticks rather quickly. I always use fairly fresh sticks on gigs (remember those) and never break sticks. At home I will use the sticks till they start to split or get mushy feeling in the middle. If I put my foot on the tip end of a stick and pull up and it starts to break I know it's ready for the broken stick bin.
 

Jawshoeuh

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pretty rare to actually break a stick these days, 99% of the time they usually just wear out at the tip/shoulder, but every now and then I might snap one at a gig.

don't keep close track, but probably get 4-6 weeks out of my sticks at the practice kit, doing around an hour every day...

I use 2Bs a lot and it's always a little sad to have to throw out a big fat stick that's still in good condition all the way up to the shoulder, lol.
 

DanRH

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I use Vaters. I don’t break them but wear through them in the middle. Once the start splintering, they’re gone.
 

phdamage

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i'm all rim shots in loud bands, so i bust my 5Bs all the time. i switched from vic firth to vater in like 2004 when they suddenly seemed much lighter and i could easily bend them.
 

CherryClassic

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No, haven't broke a stick or head since High School, 1964. I play low volume venues and my style of music doesn't require a lot of hard playing.

sherm
 

Twakeshima

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I break sticks once every few months. I play some pretty heavy music so hard hitting is probably the cause of that. More often I wear sticks out ie. worn out tips or chewed up sides.
 

michaelocalypse

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I switchted to Vater probably over a decade ago at this point. I think I've broken two sticks since. I don't break cymbals anymore either. Glad that's all out of the way.
 

Trey Gray

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All the time. Usually after they've gotten thin from the cymbals it splits down the middle along the grain. Oh and my preferred stick is 5b wood tip. I've also found that zildjian stick last far longer than vic firth for me.
Didn't know if you knew this or not but Vic makes Zildjian sticks...just throwing that out there...

cheers and blessing, TG
 

bolweevil

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I play a lot of rim shots so eventually my sticks just get too thin or crack down the middle. Once in a great while if I'm excited and really bashing at a gig a worn down stick might snap.

In my teens and twenties I would break sticks (and cymbals!) way more often than should happen, but like most of us time brings technique and an awareness that maximal force is never necessary.
 

Tornado

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Back when I had to compete with loud amps and no mics for me, I went through sticks. Hard rim shots, and hitting the shoulder of the stick on my ride bell is what did it for me. These days I don't break them.
 

Stretsch

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Broke sticks all the time as a kid. Bad technique for sure but also because my buddies and I would dumpster dive the local drumstick factory and grab all the discards!
Not long ago I broke two sticks in one night. To be fair they were end of life sticks but my bandmates were razing me about my homelife; yes my wife and I were not lovey dovey that night.
 

RIDDIM

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I don't go through sticks on a daily basis, but once is a while something will crack with the grain. Wear is usually the issue. If I'm playing a lot of straight ahead, the tips wear down so the ride cymbal sound becomes too undefined, in which case nylon may be an option, or if I'm doing a lot of pocket music, both sticks tend to get eaten away by rimshots or high hats, and unevenly at that.
 


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