First Pair of Brushes


Senior Member
I see metal, I see nylon, I see some variances in brushes and I'm not sure what would suite me best.

I am just looking to add a little variety to my practices, especially because I'm working with Jazz composure as of late.

I am thinking nylon? For a softer sound. And if anyone has specific recommendations, I'm looking for a pair that I can raise the band and tighten them up towards the top.

Also, being cheap is a great attribute :)



Gold Member
Concur. Wire and the heavier the better. You can play quietly with heavy brushes but you can't play loudly with light ones. Regal makes some good ones. Don't remember the model.


Platinum Member
I also use heaver wire brushes 90% of the time.
I use the Zildjian brushes with the raked ends.

I use softer brushes too sometimes. I am doing an un-mic'd gig in a small room with a female singer.
I don't want to step on her vocals to hard. There will be just me and a bass behind her for the tunes.
A trumpet will also solo in between the heads.
I am going to use a sizzler cymbal also.


If you have a big music store near you, try every brush. I mean it, ALL of them. I'll sneak a snare drum over to the brush section, open every package and try all the brushes when I want new ones. It might take me an hour, but I'm always really happy with my purchase.

Edit: My usual preference have wood handles with medium gauge metal bristles. I like the wood handles because they feel like sticks in my hands and I can flip them around and use them as sticks in a pinch.


Gold Member
Agree with the heavier wires. It is very hard to project with lighter ones.
I strongly recommend the Vic Firth Legacy brushes. They are a medium brush thickness. What makes them different is that they have a wood handle and is adjustable. As far as I know it's the only brush that has these 2 things. I don't like the plastic handles, I find them unnatural.

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I've used the Regal Tip black rubber covered handle metal brushes for years. I think Vic Firth and Zildjian make a similar model - great brushes. The reason I like the rubber handled ones, if hat when I get loud and start laying the brush into the head, the rubber hits, and not the metal that's exposed, on say, their wood-handled ones that are non-adjustable, which dents the head. Is $22 too much to spend?


Silver Member
The two models I'd suggest are either the Regal Tip basic rubber handle brushes (583R) or the Vic Firth Heritage model also rubber handle.

These are classic models with telescoping wires.

I've used the plastic brushes before but never warmed up to them for traditional jazz brush playing. Also at one point, the plastic around where the brushes come out shattered a bit. They were still useable but not great. The plastic never felt like it should to me. Having said that I've seen one or two old timer jazz players using them - but they were in the minority.



Junior Member
I'm a big fan of the Regal Tip Ed Thigpin model brushes. I picked these up when I was doing a lot of driving brush work on the snare and the brushes that I used to love for jazz just wouldn't hold up to the heavier hitting. The Thigpins are as good today as they were 5 years ago and they're also perfect for light work.