Possibly dating from c. 1800, timpani stick heads made of multiple layers of flannel disks are today still traditionally used in Austria and other European countries were Germanic influence in timpani playing is found. Increasingly, however, they are also finding favor with timpanists in many other areas of the world. The “flannel stick” is crafted by mounting multiple discs of compressed thin flannel and/or other fabrics on a handle. There is neither a separate core nor any sewn seam. I offer three models from medium to hard. Each pair uses a different number and/or diameter of fabric discs, typically mounted on 1/2″ wide by 15” long straight wood handles. All sticks of this type typically have a good deal of head contact sound when new, but I voice each pair before sending them out. The sound continues to improve from being played. For an interesting change of feel and sound both on natural skin and plastic heads, you might want to add one or more of these pairs to your collection; however, I recommend them as additional, not first choices, especially for student players who may be on limited budgets. The standard handle for the flannel sticks is 1/2″ x 15” long straight white ash, but these sticks also work very well on bamboo handles. I do not recommend the lighter weight carbon fiber handles for the flannel sticks. The flannel line sticks also can be supplied with 6” long molded rubber grips at additional cost. Please see the Prices link for costs and options.
F-1. Green. Medium. The F-1 head is about 1 1/8″ wide and 3/4″ high.
F-2. Yellow. Medium-hard. The F-2 head is about 1 1/8″ wide and 5/8″ high.
F-3. Light blue. Hard. The F-3 head is approximately 1″ in diameter and 5/8″ high.