Re: When Drumsticks Break
I use Vater 5b's and they are super durable. I don't think I've ever broken a stick, but I do wear them down considerably in the shoulder neck area where they become fragile, so I end up tossing it out before it breaks..should I continue playing it the stick would def. break, but at that point there really is no life in the stick anyway..
When I'm gigging regulary, and by regular I mean at least 3 times out of the month, I'll go through a pair of sticks in one gig. I play in a Top 40 Classic Rock band, so I'm hitting pretty hard most of the night, my bandmates love a loud solid back beat, so I'm rim-shotting (totally just made up that word!) all night!! So, here's how it goes down - one week will be a brand new set of 5b's, by the third set (we do 3 1.5 hr. sets) the sticks are worn in the shoulder/taper area..by the next gig the following week, (by the middle of the 1st set or after 2 or 3 songs) the sticks from the previous weeks gig are literally toothpicks and out they go..So that's my rotation if you will.
Things to consider are the frequency you're hitting rim shots and if you have a tilt in your hi-hat bottom, which means the top hi-hat and bottom hat are over lapping, which will shave your sticks considerably...all par for the course!
However, and this is a crazy realization, while I was unemployed and practicing for 3-4 hours, 4 days a week, my sticks didn't get worn too much and I could use the same pair for months, if they were Vater that is, I used to play Vic Firth but man, the tips would chip or fly off altogether after just 20--30 minutes of practicing (I digress). But at a gig, playing the songs I was learning, they'd would just get chewed up! I reckon when playing live you have to factor in adrenalin, excitement, if you're not mic'ed you'll be hitting harder, I never really lay into the snare as hard as I do live when practicing, yadda yadda yadda...
So I guess for me the life of a stick depends on practice vs. playing live...