Sticks of all shapes

Drums sticks have many variations.

One of the most necessary and most basic needs of every drummer is, of course, drum sticks.

There are many kinds of drum sticks, and some of them even have deeper classifications. There are drum sticks, brushes and mallets.

Drum Sticks

Drum sticks are the most commonly used kind of sticks. They are usually made of wood, oftern hickory, oak, and hard maple. Other materials used include aluminum, carbon fiber, and some plastics like fiberglass and nylon.

Drum sticks

An ordinary pair of drum sticks.

Drum sticks vary in width, length, density, and weight. Each drummer may have his own requirements on sticks, and he has a lot of sticks to choose from. Each pair of sticks may give a different kind of feel to drummers.

Many people, especially beginner drummers might wonder what the number-letter combinations on every drum stick are for. Here is how to decipher them. The numbers correspond to the stick's length. The smaller the number is, the longer the stick is. Therefore, sticks numbered with 7 are shorter than sticks numbered with 5. And the letters represent the stick's diameter (width). The further the letter is in the alphabet, the thicker the stick is. Therefore, sticks with the letter A are thinner than sticks with the letter B. So, when the numbers and letters are combined, you may know a stick's length and thickness.


Agner Brushes

Three pairs of Agner brushes

Brushes are sticks with bristles. The bristles can be made of plastic or metal. They produce a 'tsk' sound, similar to that of a shaker's.

There are many kinds and designs of brushes, some of them may even have specific specs for certain genres.

Like drum sticks, brushes may be made from different materials. The bristles can be matallic or plastic, while the handles are usually wooden or aluminum.


Encore 2134R Rubber Mallet

An Encore 2134R Rubber Mallet.

Mallets (or mallet sticks, beaters, or rutes) are drum sticks with big heads or tips. They are used on percussion instruments other than the drums like glockenspiels and xylophones.

IP Steel Bass Drum Mallet SA-6

An Innovative Percussion SA-6 Steel Bass Drum Mallet

Mallets have a simple anatomy to understand. They have heads, which are big and can be made of rubber, nylon, yarn, or even acrylic. And the have shafts, which are often made from strong wood like rattan or birch.



A pair of Multi-rod sticks.

Multi-rods are a mixture of drumsticks and brushes. They are made up of several thin sticks compiled, or sardined to form one stick. This type of sticks allows a drummer to play at full strength and still not over-play the others in the band. the number of thin sticks held together may also vary.


Here are some of the leading brands when it comes to drumsticks.

Vic Firth

Vic Firth