It is advisable for a drummer to try out different drum sticks just to help him get different effects in sound. He will need sticks that are strong, durable and can withstand hard and aggressive strikes especially if he is a marching percussionist. Generally drum sticks are made from wood but there are some that are made from other materials like plastic. The material used to construct your drum sticks will definitely determine their quality.
The wooden sticks are also made from different kinds of wood with different quality. For example, drum sticks made from hickory and oak are stronger and heavier than those made from maple. The drum stick is a uniquely constructed piece with all its various parts contributing to the sound delivered when a drum is struck.
The tip of a drum stick has a major impact on sound and it is mostly made of either wood or nylon. The taper is the part from the body of the drum stick to the tip of the stick. The sound delivered by a drum stick with a narrow taper won’t be as loud as that delivered by a drumstick with a thicker taper.
These drum sticks usually have certain numbers and letters inscribed on them. The number markings indicate the circumference of the sticks, while the letters represent what the stick should be used for. A bigger number signifies a smaller circumference while a smaller number signifies a larger circumference.
Below is a compilation of the top 5 best marching snare sticks available out there.
#5. Vic Firth American Custom SD1 General, 1 pair
The Vic Firth American Custom SD1 has excellent pitch and is a perfect pair of sticks for any drummer. It is well designed and suited for your traditional snare drumming, concert band, orchestra applications and more. They have a length of 16 3/8” and a diameter of 0.635”. They are a good quality pair with very nice and comfortable feel/handling.
These marching snare sticks have a rounded tip, quite bulky and yet very light, making them very easy and convenient to use. These models are thicker than the 5A model. They are neither Sr. sized nor Jr. sized. These are normal sized sticks. They are constructed with maple, have a smooth movement and when they hit a drum a full rich sound is delivered. With these sticks, you are in total control of your play. They also have an excellent rebound.
#4. Vic Firth Corps master Signature Snare — Ralph Hardimon
These sticks are designed to suit your wrists. They have the perfect grip and also have a sharp and fast rebound. The taper of these drumsticks give you more control. These sticks are widely used by drummers all over because they basically help deliver good sound. The nice texture of these sticks, with their excellent impact velocity and the fact that they are well balanced makes them the perfect fit for your drum. They have a barrel tip and have dimensions of 17” length and 0.710”.
They are thick, very strong and durable and will withstand aggressive applications; be rest assured that you can do your rim shots comfortably without having to worry about breakage. The size of these sticks guarantees better motor skills.
#3. Promark Hickory TXDC50W Wood Tip Marching Drumsticks
These are responsive drumsticks that are strong and durable. They have that splendid feel and they are well constructed to help achieve that amazing and natural sound when used on your marching drum. They are designed with a big round head and guarantee amazing control. With a reversed butt head taper as well as a rounded tip, these sticks give a comfortable handling and feel. You can enjoy your rim shots with these ones for a long time.
As marching sticks they are quite heavy (but not too heavy) and are designed as marching snare sticks and so may not be well suited for any other purpose other than what it was designed for. You can easily replace the rubber tip of your sticks if they crack. They have diameters of 750” and their length measures 16 7/8”.
The Promark Hickory TXDC50W are well priced considering the quality of sound one can achieve with them. You will enjoy more sound with these sticks. They are appropriate marching snare sticks for corps marching. They are also ideal for style marching. When they are used on tenor drums, the volume remains unchanged but there is a duller initial attack and the pitch is a tad lower.
#2. Promark American Hickory TXDC17W Scott Johnson Marching Drumsticks
The promark TXDC17W are standard sticks that have very good resilience and are also very responsive. They are designed with a medium taper which gives them a great rebound and deliver full and classic sound. These sticks are designed from hickory which is the most common wood used in the construction of drumsticks.
They have an excellent shape and finish that makes them easy and comfortable to use. The initial attack is also dull, but the volume relatively stays the same. They were designed as marching stick and so will work perfectly for this purpose. They are not designed for use on drum sets. Your chops will definitely get better when you use these sticks. They have a decent weight and can withstand those hard rim shots.
They have a diameter of 700” and length of 17”. The promark TXDC17W are pitch matched, they give you full control and generally deliver more precise and quality sounds.
#1. Vic Firth MS5 Corps master Snare Sticks
The Vic Firth MS5 Corps master Snare Sticks are very popular and widely used by major high school bands all over. They are designed with a rounded tip and a medium taper, helping artistes achieve the needed requirements for music especially when it comes to the delivery of sound and overall balance.
This model has dimensions of 0.705” diameter and length of 17”. They are quite strong and will last a long time even after playing those rim shots for a long time, but it is advisable to use some stick tapes. The tapes on your stick will increase their durability, thus making them last much longer. They help you achieve amazing sounds when used on your marching drum.
These marching snare sticks are not so heavy; not as heavy as the Vic Firth Ralph Hardimon signature marching sticks. The Vic Firth MS5 are highly recommended for beginners because they are a little light. You may experience a little difficulty as you practice with these sticks because of their weight and texture but in a short period your hands will adjust and you will get the most amazing experience with your sticks.