Drumstick between 5A and 5B

rmac86

Member
Does such a thing exist?

I find I get the most powerful hit from a 5B stick but my wrists get tired quicker than with a 5A.

Though the 5B lacks some sensitivity for lighter styles which forces me to use a 5A. Don’t get me wrong I like the 5A but just feel I should be getting more out of it. To have something in the middle would be just perfect..

Any ideas?


Thanks,

R
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
While one company may not have something in-between, another company might with one of their models. It may even say 5A or 5B, yet be a noticeably different stick due to weight (wood type,) taper, length and even diameter. A well-stocked shop will have the widest variety of sticks to try in person.

Bermuda
 

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
To expand on what Bermuda already said, I've found that there's a noticeable difference in weight and feel from one major company to another. In my experience when comparing hickory sticks of the same model Pro Mark's sticks seem the lightest, Vater's the heaviest, with Vic Firth coming right in between.

Stick length and taper also have a huge impact on how the stick handles when playing. A longer taper makes a stick respond more quickly (and may feel smaller than it actually is) while a shorter taper works the opposite.

I agree that hitting up a well-stocked shop is the easiest (and potentially cheapest) way of figuring out what might be the right stick. There are so many variables to stick sizes and simply comparing specs online doesn't really tell you the whole story.
 

Old Dog new Cans

Senior Member
What about Promark 747s?? When I used them years ago, they seemed bigger than 5b/5a but not quite 2b size. It's been SO many years since I used them, I could be wrong on my size judgement.
 

gish

Senior Member
Sticks that are marketed as between 5A and 5B in size are typically around .580 diameter. A few standard examples-
-Vic Firth 55A
-Vater Fusion, available with ball tip or acorn
-Pro Mark select balance 55A
-Regal Tip’s standard 5A, .580 diameter
I’m sure there are signature sticks as well from the various manufacturers in that diameter.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
Vater Los Angeles 5A
marked as '5A' but they are on the thicker side, but not quite a 5B.
Vater are also some of the longer lasting sticks (wood density is higher I think)
 

Peedy

Senior Member
I'm assuming your primary interest is weight. You could just change the wood type while keeping roughly the same diameter stick. That would probably be the best option in terms of muscle memory and striking power. Try something like a Promark Japanese Oak (a number of makers offer something similar) set of sticks in whatever diameter you're already used to.

Pete
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Any ideas?
Yes:
  1. Pick up a pair of 5A sticks and play your ride cymbal and hi-hats. Play with normal power and speed.
  2. Repeat with 5B sticks.
  3. Hear the difference in how the cymbals sound, and make a decision based on that.
I played Promark 5A Active Grip for years, but switched to 5B because the larger stick diameter fits my hands better. However, the 5B radically changed how my ride cymbals and hats sounded. Bascially, with the heavier stick: more wash, less ping. And with my 20" traditional ride, the ping was virtually gone. (I now have about 10 pair of 5B sticks in storage).

On Modern Drummer Podcast #114 (I think) one of the hosts remarks how he went from a Vic Firth 5A to a 5B to a Vic Firth "Custom AJ" 'cuz it has the diameter of a 5B but a longer taper towards the tip so he gets a lighter stroke/better rebound/more ping.

If you're smashing & bashing, the difference in cymbal sound won't matter. But if you're playing with articulation and want clear definition of all your instruments, then it behooves you to listen carefully to how the heavier sticks change the sound of your gear.
 

Mastiff

Senior Member
As mentioned, Vic 55A is marketed as just that. I think Drumeo has a custom stick too that is in-between.
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
I use the Buddy Rich stick precisely because it is between a 5A and 5B, I've been using it for 22 years and not found anything I prefer.
I've also been using Buddy Rich sticks about 22-24 years! I love them for the balance, and the white paint adds to the life of the sticks.

However, 2 months ago I found a new stick...the Keith Carlock signature sticks. They're thinner, but have the same balanced feel that the BR sticks have. I love 'em. Maybe it's because I'm getting older and don't need as much oomph from my sticks, but these will probably be my go-to sticks for a while. You should check them out!
 

mrfingers

Senior Member
Regal tip 5A I think has the biggest 5A diameter at .580 and longer taper than other 5A. Weight towards the butt changes balance from other standard 5As plus they are coated.
 

markiet1966

Senior Member
I've also been using Buddy Rich sticks about 22-24 years! I love them for the balance, and the white paint adds to the life of the sticks.

However, 2 months ago I found a new stick...the Keith Carlock signature sticks. They're thinner, but have the same balanced feel that the BR sticks have. I love 'em. Maybe it's because I'm getting older and don't need as much oomph from my sticks, but these will probably be my go-to sticks for a while. You should check them out!
Thanks for that, I'll take a look :)
 
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