Is it a bad idea to use grip tape?

MntnMan62

Junior Member
I wouldn't use grip tape. You are just starting out. You haven't established your technique or your hand strength. I would not modify the sticks you play and would instead work on your technique. Over time any issues you feel with slippage will disappear. "Feel" is an essential part of playing the drums. Putting anything between you and the stick is taking some of that "feel" away. Just concentrate on learning. Sticks come in all shapes and sizes. Try a few until you find one that feels good in your hands and while playing. Then stick with it. Over time you may gravitate to another size and shape, but you will do so because your advancing technique will have demanded it, not your lack of technique. I realize my approach is sort of old school but so am I. Old.....
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Years ago I used grip tape to increase the diameter of the stick. It worked, the sticks felt good (I can’t remember the make/model), but because I was using light sticks they decayed faster. Add the cost of the wrap to the price of new sticks and, to me, it wasn’t worth it.

I migrated to Zildjian’s dipped stick but they shattered way to easily. Next was Vic Firth and 5A Vic Grip sticks.

Next up, and what I currently use, are Promark 5A rebound Active Grip. I wish the bead came in a ball shape/model, butI love the grip their product provides. I’m able to keep a relaxed, loose grip when I’m a sweaty blob.

There’s so many choices of drumstick available, why not try a few before you add cost to your sticks?
 

someguy01

Well-known member
I had the same issue, so I asked professor Auspicious for a solution. :)

He gave me a pair of 7A Zildjian Dip, they do exactly what you want, stability. Note that the 7A are extremely light weight I don't want to start a dispute or anything, they make heavier models too.

I am just saying a solution exists.


The promark active grip works really well for me. Gets sticky as your hands get warmer.
 

Auspicious

Well-known member
5B is a very common size so you are not deviating much from “average.” Using these other sticks to get your hands working may be OK to start but in a month or so, you may want to switch back to regular sticks to see if you still need the dipped sticks. If you need them, that is your personal preference. So be it. But as you become more coordinated with drumsticks, you may find you don’t need the special sticks. It’s often best to keep an open mind in both directions.
Oki but I thought the dip was really a luxury accessory, not really to correct a problem. But they help quite a bit against slipping.. I checked the stickes at the store the other day and there was none with a round tip like the 7A, perhaps I prefer that feature over the dip itself.

They ordered 2 pairs and I was literally in admiration with myself because I helped them introduce literally the best sticks in the racks lol. 😌

But this isn't over, I'll keep an open mind like you suggested and try something else. Next time I go to the store, I will test more sticks.

I thought Zildjian Dips were regular sticks, not really that special.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Yep sticks often have a shiny polished surface snd I too had issue of sticks sliding. Tried Zildjian black dip sticks but they disintegrate and the lil rubber pieces nest around snare batter head and muffle it. Beware wanting to death grip the stick -all your fingers should touch the stick with a loose grip. I’ve gone from death grip and transitioning to much looser . Amazingly looser I have less issue with sliding. It’s like when you ask “how can I play faster”. The advice will be to play slower- I was like WTH that makes no sense. But you crawl before you walk and walk before you run. I’ve seen some people lightly sand with fine grit to rid shiny coating .
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Sticks moving is normal, you sort of want that and they will sometimes slide far out and become completely unbalanced before you notice, but you will learn to adjust that instinctively over time.

Plenty of accomplished playes use sticks with some sort of dip or apply a bit of wax etc.. There's nothing wrong with it per se.

I personally don't like it at all and don't really advice it either, but there is a place for it for some people.

If beginning and undecided why not get a pair of both, go back forth and just see how you feel over time.
 

Yamaha Rider

Well-known member
I switched to AHEAD a few years ago, having been mostly a Promark buyer since the '80s. I was skeptical about AHEAD, owing to its synthetic consistency, and when I ordered and unboxed a pair, my initial reaction wasn't one of optimism. Their balance felt different, and, well, they just weren't wood. I resolved to give them a chance though and after a few weeks determined that I wanted to play with nothing else. They rebound beautifully, they're easy on the hands (they reduce shock by up to fifty percent), and they last a VERY long time. Also, they're unbelievably consistent. The 5B Light Rock model I use weighs exactly 58 grams every single time. Amazing! I don't even own a pair of wood sticks now.
Are they fibreglass?
 

Yamaha Rider

Well-known member
Sticks moving is normal, you sort of want that and they will sometimes slide far out and become completely unbalanced before you notice, but you will learn to adjust that instinctively over time.

Plenty of accomplished playes use sticks with some sort of dip or apply a bit of wax etc.. There's nothing wrong with it per se.

I personally don't like it at all and don't really advice it either, but there is a place for it for some people.

If beginning and undecided why not get a pair of both, go back forth and just see how you feel over time.
Do you find that some days the skin on your fingers seems mysteriously polished and frictionless? Not sweaty - just shiny with no grip?
Weather maybe?
 

pier25

Member
Thanks all for the tips. I've been in forums for many years and this is one of the most welcoming communities I've ever seen!

Here are some more thoughts.

I noticed that the sticks sliding happens more if I was wash my hands before practicing. I wondered if it was maybe a problem of soft skin or something... I put a bit of baby powder once and it worked great.

Then I noticed that when my hands are cold the sticks slide way more, but after an hour or so of playing they stick better to my fingers. Not sure if it's something with my skin or the coating of the sticks (I use the regular Vic Firth 5B).

It occurred to me that maybe I needed a reference in the sticks. I added some little marks by pressing a metal ruler against the sticks and this worked great. Now I can notice when the sticks are starting to slide and intuitively move them back into place before doing a full stroke which is when the sticks slide more. This has helped me immensely.


sticks.jpg

I also received the Zildjan Dip sticks and love them! This totally solves the issue, it almost feels like cheating :)

Although I will try to switch sticks often to train my brain/hands to adapt.
 
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Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Do you find that some days the skin on your fingers seems mysteriously polished and frictionless? Not sweaty - just shiny with no grip?
Weather maybe?

As long as my hands are clean I have no issues.

When outside in the cold if you sweat and then things get sticky is not so great, but it's a bigger issue when playing guitar than when playing drums.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
The key for me was loose hands.
I was one of those "gorilla guys" who developed bad grip techniques early on & it didn't help me at all.
One of the online teachers I work with had a great lesson for this & it was a game changer.
It might help you too.

Are they fibreglass?
They have aluminum hollow cores, making them more flexible and more shock absorbent than wood. Their exterior sleeves are composed of very durable polyurethane.
 

Yamaha Rider

Well-known member
Yep sticks often have a shiny polished surface snd I too had issue of sticks sliding. Tried Zildjian black dip sticks but they disintegrate and the lil rubber pieces nest around snare batter head and muffle it. Beware wanting to death grip the stick -all your fingers should touch the stick with a loose grip. I’ve gone from death grip and transitioning to much looser . Amazingly looser I have less issue with sliding. It’s like when you ask “how can I play faster”. The advice will be to play slower- I was like WTH that makes no sense. But you crawl before you walk and walk before you run. I’ve seen some people lightly sand with fine grit to rid shiny coating .
I also sandpaper my sticks.
It made no difference though. ☺
 

K Chez

Member
I was recently having this issue due to it getting colder/dryer in my practice space. Dry skin+laquered sticks=not so good. Tried sanding the grip area, which did nothing. Then got an idea, went to home depot and got some Rustoleum Leak Seal, which is a rubberized coating. Had to do a couple application tests to get it to be durable, but it was pretty simple to do and I could use the sticks I already have. Sanded off the laquer, taped it off and sprayed. A light coating/not enough sanding led to it coming off in minutes. Went to a harsh 60 grit to really rough up the wood and that was the right move. So far, what worked best was doing a light coat first, let dry then little heaver 2nd coat, dry and then a light 3rd coat. Letting them dry for a day or two seemed to help the durability. Been working good so far.

20201205_170836-md.jpg
 

felonious69

Well-known member
I switched to AHEAD a few years ago, having been mostly a Promark buyer since the '80s. I was skeptical about AHEAD, owing to its synthetic consistency, and when I ordered and unboxed a pair, my initial reaction wasn't one of optimism. Their balance felt different, and, well, they just weren't wood. I resolved to give them a chance though and after a few weeks determined that I wanted to play with nothing else. They rebound beautifully, they're easy on the hands (they reduce shock by up to fifty percent), and they last a VERY long time. Also, they're unbelievably consistent. The 5B Light Rock model I use weighs exactly 58 grams every single time. Amazing! I don't even own a pair of wood sticks now.
I have heard talk of AHEAD sticks here and thought it was just another brand preference. I didn't know they are not wood.
 
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