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View Full Version : Nylon tips VS. Wood Tips


SilverPearl
07-22-2006, 11:29 PM
Which do you prefer nylon tips or wood tips on drumsticks and why? What are the pro's and cons of each? Express your opinion here.

larrylover
07-23-2006, 12:54 AM
nylon. pro: longer lasting. consistent sound. con: tonal quality isn't as good.

BTW, best stick you'll ever use is a 5A Nylon.

Bttl
07-23-2006, 01:04 AM
Personally I use Nylon tips simply due to the fact that ride and hi-hat work stand out more than when using wood tips.

Maytridy
07-23-2006, 01:47 AM
I prefer wooden tips for their great tone. Nylon tips sound like what they are...plastic. Wooden tips don't have the longevity that nylon tips do because the wood chips off after time, but I find that nylon tipped sticks are prone to breaking right at the neck because the nylon/wood intersection creates a weak point. Solid wooden sticks (in my opinion) are not only better sounding but stronger.

konaboy
07-23-2006, 03:25 AM
BTW, best stick you'll ever use is a 5A Nylon.

That may be true for you but not necessarily everybody else. My preference is the 747 (played those for the past 10 years) and 717's (been using those for little over a year and use those depending on what I'm playing.) both wood tip.

I prefer the tone of the wood tip myself. Here again sound is a very subjective animal. I played nylon tips for a while and they did give a brighter tone out of the ride. Provided the nylon tip itself doesn't snap off the tips themselves will last a little longer than wood. But I prefer the tonal quality of a wood tip.

PreppieNerd
07-23-2006, 03:35 AM
Lots of opinions (including mine) on this topic here: http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13197

osamasgoat5467
07-23-2006, 10:17 AM
I like the sound of nylon tips a lot more than wood. It has a brighter sound on cymbals.

NaturalRaZ
07-23-2006, 01:19 PM
Nylons

PRO: High Hats & Ride respond well to the tips. You receive a more crisp sound.

CON: When they break off... your screwed. *Happens ALOT*

ucsd_drummer
07-25-2006, 09:57 AM
personally, i've never had a problem with nylon tips breaking off. it may just be conditioning, but they seems to me to have better response when working with the cymbals, and give the cymbals a more crisp clean ping. It is just my opinion, but wood tip sticks that i've used get a more dull sound out of the ride especially, and the nylon tip is a little brighter. I buy VF american classics, 7an for jazz and 5an for rock, and i love everything about them.

jollymosher
07-25-2006, 10:01 AM
i use nylon when im using vaters but when im using sticks orderd from Customdrumsticks.com i use wood. the reason being, nylon is the only thing that can take my hard hitting for longer than a song. but in the case of custom drum sticks they are 20$ a dozen... so who cares.

larrylover
07-27-2006, 10:59 AM
what the heck u guys. The only time i had a nylon tip come off was when I was using the crap sticks that came with my beginer's snare kit thing lol!

the problem with wood sticks isn't the chipping, but the speed at which they chip. I'm scared to ever play a set with them. Middle of the song, and there goes half my tip! Crap! now what? I have to constantle roll it in my hand to get the good side so my ride cymbal beat doesn't sound like im playing on plastic. lol... some one has to know what im talking about.


Not to mention, Vic Firth makes excellent sticks. wood or Nylon. (even though I like nylon) takes 2-3 monthes of daily play for me to break 1 pair of 5A nylons. and the tip never breaks, I just kill the stick with rimshots.

Stu_Strib
07-27-2006, 05:29 PM
If you can stand the sound of nylon tips (I sure can't) the benefit is they don't wear out like wood tips.

I usually wear the tip out of my sticks before any other part of the stick. I hate when the lacquer/wood wears out on the tip and then the ride sound starts going flat. I hate burning a flat spot into the tip too. I find myself rotating the stick to a part that isn't worn out a lot. I'm thinking about trying those regal tip sticks that have the nylon tips that have spaces in them. Seems like they might be the best of both worlds.

Batera945
08-15-2006, 09:17 PM
nylon tips dont sound that great in my opnion either they are bright and all that but sometims one a slow song it may make the ride too loud or just not right for the song wood tips are perfect they are warmer and more real i would say... bad thing is they break but i they are tottaly worth it

gusty
08-18-2006, 11:12 AM
i used to always use nylons, and i really dont like the sound of them on the ride especially. i have some wooden 5b's now, but i had a cheap set of nylons, the tips came clean off, and them on the ride has a really dry tone, really great for a jazz. interesting sound if u can get a pair of cheapies.

Spacehog
08-18-2006, 01:47 PM
I vastly prefer nylon tips for most things, and I've never had a single tip come off (or a stick break, for that matter), despite being a fairly hard hitter. I use ProMark 420's. But there are certain occasions when I'll turn to wood tips (which will either be Vater 5A's or ProMark Carter Beauford signature sticks). That's primarily when I'm playing more of a percussive part, with lots of cowbells and blocks, and very little cymbal work. Also, nylon tips sound awful on bongos and congas. Something I've got recently that I like is the Vater Karl's Drumbale stick, which has no tip at all, but is still tapered to balance and feel like a drum stick. Great for all percussion playing, not so good on the ride cymbal.

OZjazzer
08-18-2006, 02:27 PM
If you can stand the sound of nylon tips (I sure can't) the benefit is they don't wear out like wood tips.

I usually wear the tip out of my sticks before any other part of the stick. I hate when the lacquer/wood wears out on the tip and then the ride sound starts going flat. I hate burning a flat spot into the tip too. I find myself rotating the stick to a part that isn't worn out a lot. I'm thinking about trying those regal tip sticks that have the nylon tips that have spaces in them. Seems like they might be the best of both worlds.

I've been on and off with RegalTip E series for about a year and am still not sure. They sound in between wood and nylon which is good but the little ribs do wear down but then they often sound even better. I'll be interested to hear what you think. The idea is good and their Jazz model with the long taper is nice.

Zildjian 242
08-18-2006, 04:05 PM
I use nylon tips...I use the bell and use my tips when im on my hi hat so wood tips chip on me fast. I love the sound wood tips make though, But i use nylon because i dont have the cash to offered one pair of sticks week after week

Drummer Karl
08-18-2006, 04:16 PM
Wood tips 4ever!

I use wood, sounds more natural...okay, it is also faster damaged but the sound the most importent, or? ;-)

Karl

Gene Smasher
02-22-2007, 03:07 AM
Just want to clarify... since I'm trying to decide if I should stick with wood-tips or migrate to nylon-tips. I like the sound to be brighter, but the volume tends to make me wary.

So which is louder? Nylon, or wood tips?

Fat Elvis
02-22-2007, 06:13 AM
Just want to clarify... since I'm trying to decide if I should stick with wood-tips or migrate to nylon-tips. I like the sound to be brighter, but the volume tends to make me wary.

So which is louder? Nylon, or wood tips?

nylon.

twenty characters.

frank0072
02-22-2007, 10:26 AM
I only play the drums since september 2006, but I already used a few sets of Vic Firth 5A's. Now I have 5AN for a few months, and they work better for me. The tips don't wear out, and I find them more responsive on the ride and hihat. The sound on my ride is really crappy, but that says more about my ride then about the sticks I think...
I think I will use 5AN for a while and see if I continue to like them.

AveyTare
02-22-2007, 10:47 AM
I prefer wood tips. they just sound more natural to me and feel as they should. nylon sounds plastic to me.

as for nylon tips lasting longer... I'm playing vic fitgh 5a for more than half a year and they still work great, they look almost like new. I'm not a heavy hitter, maybe that's why...

X22
02-22-2007, 04:14 PM
Sticks are cheap. Buy a pair of nylon tips and see how you like it. Nylon is brighter, not louder. I can be loud with either tip. Nylon holds up better. I use both depending on the situation.

Mr. Pasquini
02-22-2007, 04:34 PM
I hate nylon tips. I feel detached when I play with them. The rebound feels strange and I don't like the sound the give on cymbals.

Muckster
02-22-2007, 04:43 PM
I can't stand nylon tips.

Fat Elvis
02-22-2007, 06:34 PM
I hate nylon tips. The rebound feels strange and I don't like the sound the give on cymbals.

I play nylon tips because i like the cut and i like how long they last, however i will agree with you -- i hate they way they rebound on my ride.

Mr. Pasquini
02-22-2007, 06:42 PM
It is all just an opinion thing. I really do like the way it can help you cut, but it changes the sound I think, rather than just intensifying it, you get a click, almost... Just how I feel.

P.S. I'll preach some Vater. They last really long compared to other wood tips IMO. I use 7A's and I hit REALLY hard. They are chipping, but not about to break or become unusable by any means.

Fat Elvis
02-22-2007, 06:48 PM
It is all just an opinion thing. I really do like the way it can help you cut, but it changes the sound I think, rather than just intensifying it, you get a click, almost... Just how I feel.

P.S. I'll preach some Vater. They last really long compared to other wood tips IMO. I use 7A's and I hit REALLY hard. They are chipping, but not about to break or become unusable by any means.

well i may have to give vater wood tips a try -- i play fusions. The reason i went to nylon tips is i also play steve gadd signatures and the wood tips broke within a few hours of play. Ridiculous.

rendezvous_drummer
02-22-2007, 06:48 PM
I totally prefer Wood tip. They are more prone to breakage, but i love the sound they make on the cymbal. More natural feel, it's great.

da cheese walks
02-22-2007, 07:17 PM
It depends what im playing!

I usually use wood tips....brilliant for dynamics, and they feel so much nicer...

I use Nylon tips if im doing heavy stuff, that usually destroys tips....because the only thing that happens to my sticks is the tips crack off etc....i always have left over stick shafts with no tips when using wood.....ahhhh....

Deathmetalconga
02-22-2007, 08:47 PM
INylon tips sound like what they are...plastic.

And what are drumheads made out of? It ain't calfskin!

Because the dominant style nowdays is wood tip, it's hard to find plastic tips. I really like the Zildjian line of sticks, especialy the Trilok Gurtu signatures, but NONE of them are plastic tipped.

masonni
02-22-2007, 09:33 PM
Growing up my Uncle and Mom both used Regal Tip 5B Nylons. So I tried those first, but my drum teacher was a die hard wood tip guy, so most of the time that's what I used. I was playing Zildjian sticks for a long time and they would chip and wear out real fast.

Only thing was, I like a real pingy clear ride, and the ride I had only gave me that sound when I was playing nylon. So I changed up to nylon, but the tips on the Zildjian sticks smashed into little bits!!!!
So I figured if you want nylon, go to the people who invented it. Regal Tip. Started played with the 5B's at first, then the 5BX, when those came out. And I have NEVER had a problem with the tips coming off or breaking.

Problem is, now I use the Metal-X and they only make it in wood tip :(

Blondie
02-27-2007, 01:24 PM
Every time I have ventured into wood tip sticks I've had to retire them early because part of the tips have sheered of. Now I may have inadvertanly hit a rim causing this to happen but at least this doesn't happen with nylon tips and I do like the sound of the nylon tips on cymbals and bells. So its nylon for me. Vater 5BN or 5AN for lighter playing.

Raymond Bloom
02-27-2007, 01:48 PM
If you can stand the sound of nylon tips (I sure can't) the benefit is they don't wear out like wood tips.

I usually wear the tip out of my sticks before any other part of the stick. I hate when the lacquer/wood wears out on the tip and then the ride sound starts going flat. I hate burning a flat spot into the tip too. I find myself rotating the stick to a part that isn't worn out a lot. I'm thinking about trying those regal tip sticks that have the nylon tips that have spaces in them. Seems like they might be the best of both worlds.
The same problem with me, that's why I use my favourite sticks - Vic Firth Jojo Mayer Signatures for gigs and recordings and when I practice on my drumset then I use 5A (shortened by 1cm, to match JM Sig stick dimensions) with nylon tips

vicfirthtenorline
02-27-2007, 06:41 PM
I only use all wood sticks. especially with my cymbals, everything sounds so much brighter than with the wood tips, and you lose some of the "woody" qualities of jazz cymbals using nylon.

jAZZpLANTS
02-28-2007, 06:27 AM
If you play any sort of aggressive music, esp. those at faster tempos, nylon tips offer little advantage. The extra durability everyone is speaking of applies mainly to softer music i.e. jazz. I you hit the drums (not cymbals) hard, your tips will fly off in a few days. And you probably will be using a pingy ride to start with, so you dont need any extra cutting power. And imo, Vic firth makes some of the best wood tip sticks available, but there nylons are the worst for losing tips, in fact i would go so far as to say zildjian has them beat in that respect.

burnthehero
02-28-2007, 07:01 AM
In the 10 years or so that I've been drumming, I've found the difference in sound between wood and nylon tips to be so minute that it doesn't even matter. I always go for the wood tips first, but I have absolutely no reservations whatsoever to buying nylon tips if they are available. Then again, I play loud rock & roll, so I don't use the tips very often anyways.

Skitch
02-28-2007, 08:18 AM
I prefer the wood tip but use a nylon tip in the studio as most engineers tell me that it gets a more cutting and brighter sound.

Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com


http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=drummermikemccraw

Javlib
04-09-2007, 06:22 AM
Nylon tips will give a tone that cuts through the mix (wanking guitars). If you play at church, please don't use the nylon tips, (the soundman has enough of a challenge trying to please 200 helpful critics), and you probably don't need to cut through anything.

Nylon tips might also (just maybe) make a cheap cymbal sound a little better. But a crap cymbal is still crap, and there's little use in polishing a turd. I used to think that the nylon was absolutely awful on the drums and so-so on the brass, but for the last two decades, I just don't like them for either. Now that's the best I can do as far as listing the PROS of nylon.

Wood offers an organic tone, and that's why 98% of the posts before mine prefer wood.

I play the Zildjian 7A Hickory wood tip, they have the little round tip, and allow me to get many different tones. I like the weight, balance, density. The small round bead will chip away quicker than other shapes, but I love this stick. I play Gospel, R&B, Funk, in a eight piece band, and each pair of sticks last me about 12-15 hours. It is always the flat spots on the tips (from striking the bell of the ride I suspect) that causes me to retire them, but I think the mileage is reasonable.

This is alot like tube amplifiers versus solid state amplifiers, it's all about the tone, but the musicians are the only ones that really hear that perfect tone, most folks can't tell the difference and don't give a hoot.

JCM
04-11-2007, 01:49 PM
This is why it is a good idea to buy more than 1 pair of sticks at a time. The other drummer at my church told me that he has broken ALL 15 pairs of sticks that he had! And now he wants to move on to mine lol

On the nylon vs wood. One of my nylon sticks got broken and so at the moment I'm playing with one nylon stick and one wood stick. But before it was broken I would use the nylon sticks for playing praise music because they cut through the music more and I would use the wood sticks for playing worship because they were not as loud.At the end of the day, you are the one playing so it is up to you to experiment and find out what suits you best.

bonzolead
04-11-2007, 06:43 PM
I like the sound of nylon tips a lot more than wood. It has a brighter sound on cymbals.
I totally agree wood tip sound dead on cymbals with plastic tips through sometimes f you hit the ride bell with plastic tips there crack or shatter.I like the overall sound of plastic tip through.

Keep Swatting,
Bonzolead

cjl71178
04-11-2007, 07:15 PM
i started using wood tips because the drum shop i order my Z4A's from were out of nylon tip.....that was a few years ago and i've been using wood tips ever since. i actually like the sound of wood tip better, plus no more flying nylon tips out into the crowd and to fellow bandmates! LOL.

Fiery
04-11-2007, 08:02 PM
If you play any sort of aggressive music, esp. those at faster tempos, nylon tips offer little advantage. The extra durability everyone is speaking of applies mainly to softer music i.e. jazz. I you hit the drums (not cymbals) hard, your tips will fly off in a few days. And you probably will be using a pingy ride to start with, so you dont need any extra cutting power. And imo, Vic firth makes some of the best wood tip sticks available, but there nylons are the worst for losing tips, in fact i would go so far as to say zildjian has them beat in that respect.

I've been using nylon tips almost exclusively for the whole three and some years of my playing, and I've still to lose a tip. I do play loud/fast music, and I've used Regal Tip, Vic Firth, Stunner (a low quality cheap brand of sticks) and L.A. Special (Pro-Mark sub standard sticks). It takes me on average three or more months to break a stick, and three or four weeks to render a wood tip useless; I only play on an actual drumset once or twice a week during band rehearsals. I like both the sound of wood and nylon, and I just don't want throw money away because a perfectly good stick shaft has no playable tip after a few practice rehearsals.

Tama Player
04-11-2007, 09:55 PM
Im more of a metal player than jazz so I like to use nylon. I usually don't break the tips off, but will occasionally. They seem to work well for me. Even so, wood works well with me too, but I'm not all for that "wash" sound. Some drummers like them very "washy" I guess you could say, especially jazz drummers. I have even heard of some drummers that soke their tips in water and get then almost soggy and then play....not for me.

Peace
AGR

bonzolead
04-11-2007, 10:25 PM
i started using wood tips because the drum shop i order my Z4A's from were out of nylon tip.....that was a few years ago and i've been using wood tips ever since. i actually like the sound of wood tip better, plus no more flying nylon tips out into the crowd and to fellow bandmates! LOL.
that's pretty funny I use nylon tip sticks and I use the side of the stick instead of the tip when hitting the bell on a ride too many shattered tips.hey what works,works.just as long as they are wood sticks not plastic,metal,etc. I just don't. like synthetic sticks but that another thread altogether.

Keep Swatting,
Bonzolead

d.c.drummer
04-11-2007, 10:54 PM
Wood. Far superior sound. Nylon makes circa 1930 Zildjian Constantinoples sound like Sabian B8's. If i was looking for durability, i would be playing piano, not drums.

drummerchick435
04-11-2007, 11:02 PM
I've played both but I play nylon mainly now. I play nylon because...
A) I play an ekit at church and nylon doesn't mark as much
B) the tips are more durable
and,
C) IMO, they sound better on cymbals

But I do play wood on occasion.

BellsOfRhymney
04-13-2007, 12:49 AM
I can't think of one good player that uses plastic.

Skitch
04-13-2007, 07:53 AM
I go back and forth - I like wood tips but I tend to use nylon tips on gigs and in the studio as they produce a brighter sound!


Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com

http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw

harryconway
04-13-2007, 08:03 AM
I can't think of one good player that uses plastic.

Start here: http://www.bigbangdist.com/artists.htm

Skitch
04-15-2007, 10:02 AM
Here is a great reason to have a pair of nylon tip sticks in your bag. On the gig I played tonight (outdoors!), the 20" Medium ride cymbal wasn't cutting it with wood tips and I found myself wishing that I had brought the 21" Rock Ride. So I ditched the wood tips for the nylon tips and this helped quite a bit!


Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com

http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw

teejcombos
04-15-2007, 10:40 AM
depends on the sticks. i love the sound of my promark 7a's (absolutely LOVE it) as well as my AMS jazz sticks, but i hate the sound of my legend 5a maple sticks. i love the sound of my omar hakim nylon tip signature sticks, but i don't really like the sound of my zildjian 7a nylons, or my ancient, undestructible pair of drum city rock sized nylon tip sticks. also, it depends on the cymbal i'm playing. my omar hakim sticks sound great on my hi-hats and crash, not so great on the ride. the promark 7a's sound superb on the ride and hi-hats, not so much on the crash.

BellsOfRhymney
04-15-2007, 11:27 AM
Start here: http://www.bigbangdist.com/artists.htm

That page creeped me out. HEE!

bojangleman
04-29-2007, 05:32 AM
personally, i would go with nylon. but thats me. i play my ride pretty hard and sometimes the wood tip cracks and makes a hazard of denting my heads... so i stick with nylon. but everyone is different..especially in drums..ha

Kirsh
06-27-2007, 03:36 AM
i go wood all the way. nylon sounds too artificial and the rebound is very unconfourtable, donīt care if they last long i want to bring the best sound i can. its like using emperor x in all batters cause they last longer, unless you prefer the nylon tip sound there is no point in choosing them for durability. its not like buying new cymbals , i mean sticks are sold by dozens.

georgeman
06-27-2007, 04:00 AM
Nylons

PRO: High Hats & Ride respond well to the tips. You receive a more crisp sound.

CON: When they break off... your screwed. *Happens ALOT*

if u get tired of the nylon sound

just hit them agenst the rims and break off the heads

then u get a wood sound

-george

LayinDown
07-02-2007, 12:53 AM
Played wood tips for the first couple years of my drumming, but got sick of the tips breaking, so I'm all nylon these days. Although I prefer the wood tip sound a *little* more over nylon, having a stick last is where it's at for me.

Vic Firth 5AN & 5BN

CASP3Rdrummer
07-02-2007, 01:28 AM
i really prefer wood over nylon because of the sound...and sound is what we all look for. reacently though ive been changing my sticks like a maniac (and i dont have so much cash for throwing) because of the chipping which becomes very annoying so im gonna buy 1 pair 5A nylon and 1 same with wood tip...gonna be playing with both same time and see what suits me best. i think ill go with nylons from now on

gish
07-02-2007, 06:58 AM
I use both. When you play a lot of live gigs, you notice that different venues sound, well, different. I used to only use wood tip sticks, and in certain rooms my ride and hats would sound kind of dead. I use the Vic Firth Extreme 5B and Extreme 5A, depending on the size of the room, and I have both wood and nylon tip versions of each of those sizes. If the room is very live, I use the wood tips, so my cymbals don't sound too tinny. If the room is more dead, here come the nylons to brighten my cymbals up.

drum.lad
07-04-2007, 07:15 PM
wood tip for me all the time i dodnt know it just feels better vater chad smith funk blasters are the perfect stick

Skitch
07-17-2007, 08:31 PM
Nylon tips are going to provide a more defined sound from your cymbals. Wood tips have a livelier feel.


Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com

http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw

Joel Woody
07-17-2007, 09:10 PM
i am a wooden tip kinda guy, although the Vic sticks with the stick actually having the nylon molded around it....oooooooooo......it doesnt break as quickly as the other nylons......

bonzolead
07-17-2007, 10:14 PM
I can't think of one good player that uses plastic.
Mike Portnoy that's just off the top of my head without thinking.

Bonzolead

spartacus1989
07-17-2007, 10:35 PM
I like Nylon tips for jazz and using mainly the ride/hi-hat.

I like Wood tips for electronic drums and Rock Druming, it has a great sound for crashing and on the toms.

Skitch
07-18-2007, 07:07 PM
I like Nylon tips for jazz and using mainly the ride/hi-hat.

I like Wood tips for electronic drums and Rock Druming, it has a great sound for crashing and on the toms.


I used to do the same thing in Big Band in college. The wood tips weren't defined enough and the rest of the band wasn't listening too well. Maybe I should have used an anvil.

Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com

http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw