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This forum is more of a question .. in relation to the qwest i am on currently to find a set of mallets that fit my hands ... ive noticed that the majority of the vibe players out there that have there own signature mallets have larger hands that i do. so here is question .. i like the sound that the joe locke series has and also the dave samuels/ fried man medhard mallets produce, but then here lies the problem .. but then i have a set of old good vibe david friedman mallets from 1985 that have the size of rattans, but do not produce the sound i am looking for ..

hmmm any ideas ... im thinking of just ordering a bunch of different sets for different companies and use that 90 trial and set wat doesnt fit back ...

any other advice or input would be awesome


Vince H Thu, 07/12/2012 - 15:21

Invest in a caliper and measure that rattan. Then you can order the same from bamboo and rattan works in Hoboken. Then you can replace the shafts on the mallets you like.

I began making my own mallets 3 decades ago. At this point, I can "hear" the sound I want and pretty much figure out how to match cores and wrap to get close (never the same, but close). I began by taking apart old mallets and wrapping them myself, then gradually started finding my own materials. I think you should at least begin rewrapping the mallets you like. You also need to get specific--very specific--about what you like about the mallets you like. "Liking" them isn't nearly enough. As a matter of fact, rather than liking them, you should be "diagnosing" them: noting the combination of contact sound, sounds produced at different strike velocities, balance, rattan/birch/fiberglass diameter, ease of damping, capacity to produce similar tone qualities across the range of graduated bar widths, durability, etc--as many qualities as you can diagnose and categorize.

Suzbamboo Thu, 03/27/2014 - 10:16

In reply to by Vince H

Good day. I am sorry to say that Bamboo &Rattan Works has closed it's doors in July 2013. You can still get our quality rattan from The P.L. Butte company in Long Beach, NY. Same overseas supplier. Same quality. They have a website, but do not sell online. You can call them at 516-889-1190.

Randy_Sutin Fri, 03/28/2014 - 16:49

In reply to by Suzbamboo

If there is any model of Mike Balter's mallets that you like the sound, but are not happy with the rattan, give him a call. In the past, he has made me sets to order with the size rattan I was looking for (both length and diameter) on the heads of my choice from those he makes.

In particular, I liked his wide bar series, but didn't care for the shorter handles. He made me a set of all three hardnesses (4 each) with rattan handles exactly the thickness I prefer.

Certainly, it is worth calling Mike. If nothing else, you couldn't find a better person to ask your question and get a really knowledgable answer.