Having trouble figuring out what kind of stick bag you need? There are so many options out there today it can be overwhelming. When someone asks me what kind of bag they should get, I always ask what them a few questions first. Who is going to be using the bag? Is this just for drumsticks? Do you have mallets? Timpani mallets? How many mallets do you have? Do you want something that can hold your music/computer? Do you play gigs? Do you need to haul around your gear a lot? These are all questions to consider when shopping around for mallet bags.
Some of the manufactures provide estimates about how many sticks/mallets the bag will fit. There are multiple factors such as if you have more yarn mallets, or more drum sticks that will actually determine how many stick/mallets you can fit. I would take all of these with a grain of salt and they are a general guide. Don’t overstuff your mallet bag as this will not only put strain on the bag, but also your sticks and mallets.
Below are some suggestions for stick/mallet bags and how best to use them.
Chapter I: Just The Essentials
If you are looking for something small and compact to just hold a couple pairs of sticks or mallets I would suggest checking out the Mike Balter MBMP mallet pouch or the Vic Firth Essential mallet bag. They only will fit a few pairs of stick or mallets, so if you want something to hold more than that, read to the next chapter.
These bags are perfect for someone that needs to haul around only a few pairs of mallets, or is looking to get their mallets organized. Either of these will fit into a larger bag easily to help separate out timpani mallets or specialty mallets or brushes.
I also suggest this bag to music teachers that have mallets at the keyboard instruments in their classroom. Instead of having the mallets on a music stand or falling of the instrument all the time, you can use these bags and attach them to the instrument. That way it is very clear that these are the xylophone mallets, these are the marimba mallets, etc. It will also help protect your mallets and make it harder to loose!
You can check out these products at the link below.
Chapter II: The Next Step
The next step up from one of the essentials only bags would be a standard or basic stick bag. These are larger bags and can typically hold at least 12 pairs of sticks mallets. Many of these have interior and exterior pockets for pencils, metronomes, and small accessories. These are not large enough for music but are great for drum set players or students just starting out on percussion that will have different types of mallets.
Here are some suggestions:
Chapter III: My Mallet Bag Is Overflowing!
Typically once a percussionist gets to high school or is looking at studying in college they will start to add to their arsenal and will need something a little bigger. From here, you can either get a medium size bag like the ones below or you can go all out and get a huge bag that are highlighted in the next chapter. Pros and Cons? By getting a medium bag, you have something that is large enough to handle multiple kinds of mallets, you can fit your keys, and metronomes in, and you won’t be carrying around every single one of your mallets so it won’t weight 100lbs!
These bags like the standard bags explained previously, offer multiple pockets, handles and straps, and some can hold music or larger accessories. Perfect for the growing musician that is starting to add more sticks and mallets to their collection. The Balter MBMB tube bag is perfect for someone with a bunch of marimba/vibe/xylo mallets. This tube shaped with zippered openings on either end that allow you to put mallets in either direction. Holds a lot of mallets for a great price!
Her are a few examples.
Chapter IV: I’ll Take The Lot!
At this point, you are overwhelmed with the amount of mallets and sticks in your life. All of your bags and backpacks are overfilled. You might have random mallets in your locker, under your bed, and not one matched pair of drum sticks. Well don’t worry, mallet bag manufactures have several different options to get all your gear a home and get your life more organized.
The extremely large mallet bags are a great option for keeping everything together in a central location. These bags typically have many individual pockets of different sizes in multiple tiers. They feature many pockets on the inside and outside. Some are large enough to hold laptops, tablets, or music. Some feature backpack straps to help you haul your gear around. Many have features that enable you to hang off of a keyboard instrument for easy access when playing.
Take a look at some of the options that are available in this category.
I like to think of mallet and sticks bags like luggage. If you buy a set of luggage, you typically get a small hand bag, a medium size that you can carry on to the air plane, and then the huge bag that you have to check. Each have their uses and benefits depending on the situation.
Protect your investment and your mallets can last you a long time!
If you have any questions about any of our mallet bag options, feel free to call, email, or chat online with us!