Re: Is there a thinner hickory stick than a 7A?
I like a thicker stick too for my hand size, and I can play super quiet with 5B's if I have to, but I really have to tap a little too lightly for my comfort. So why not use a lighter stick. Perhaps I will try maple too, they are lighter. I don't like maple for a heavy stick because they break faster than any stick I played. Maple's grain is not stringy like hickory. Maple probably would work better here because I'm tapping most of the night.
I find that I prefer the tradeoff of a thinner stick in my hand because I don't have to use as much volume control because the drum just does not project with the same oomph as with a larger stick. It's a less tense way for me to play when I can hit at a certain stick height. And we're only talking about a 3 inch stick height even with the 7A. With a 5A I have to lower it even more. That extra bit of height makes all the difference.
Thanks for all the recommendations. I will give them all a try to see which fits best.