Vater Acoustick Sticks combine 7 wood dowels and 6 strips of impact-resistant polymer. With Acousticks you can dig in without breakage. Their O-ring permits a wide range of adjustment for sound and feel.
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Comments about Vater Acoustick Sticks:
I've gotten to the point wherein I seldom use sticks any more. All my playing is in the studio, where I can capture the kinds of nuances and textures that Vater Acousticks provide. These are NOT for power and volume, obviously; rather, they're for subtlety, feel, and groove. They give you the same kind of thick, fat, juicy sound you get with a compressor, except that you have feel of having tactile control of the sound. Their flexibility (by which I mean the way they move and yield) sets up a kind of hysteresis that makes it easier to feel your way into a groove. If you've never experienced it, you really have to try it to get the sensation.The plastic strips make a HUGE difference in the durability of the stick. They do a terrific job of protecting the hardwood dowels within.The only downside is that the Acousticks do tend to wear after extended use. The rubber O-rings are the first to go. They never really worked all that well in the first place, but that's no surprise. They take an awful lot of pounding. I replaced them with heavy rubber bands that I wrapped around the stick multiple times. Eventually they break too, but rubber bands are cheap.Over time, the rods and plastic strips began to loosen up. At that point I put a couple of nylon ties around the shaft and that tightened up again. On one stick, the rods started sliding up and down within the bundle (this is after YEARS of use, so no complaints here) and the end cap came off. No problem; I applied SuperGlue to the ends and stuck the end cap back on. Good as new!These are my all-time favorite rods!