Re: BREAKING STICKS
A good few years back, I was trying to make my sticks last longer and decided to adjust my hihats so that the natural movement of the cymbals would not expose the stick to the open edge of the bottom cymbal to axe away at it. I got 2 results; my sticks lasted longer and I cracked the top cymbal of my 13" K/Z hihats. I don't worry about stick wear now, I'd always rtaher break a stick than a cymbal.
Incidentally, I use vic firth nova rock size with nylon tips. I previously used premium vic firth sticks of the same size and type and found that they were inferior in terms of lasting and lost tips much more regularly than the novas. I've never had any quality issues with the novas either.