Through the past few years of operating LA BackBeat, I have experienced many ups and downs and extreme learning curves. From the onset, I figured I could make a stick that would be comparable to the leading manufacturers products. I never imagined that my quality control and my knowledge of wood could yield a far more durable product. Although I am still working out some of the finer details of LABB drumsticks, I am continuously surprised at the life span.
When I first started this endeavor, I knew it was going to require a lot of processes to yield a quality product. One such process was a nice smooth drumstick and to get to that end result would require a sander. After scouring the internet and researching options, I came to the conclusion that most sanders were enormous machines that would occupy a tremendous amount of floor space in my already small shop. I set out to create a sander and, after researching and brainstorming with a fellow woodworker, then set out to build it. YES! Build a sander from scratch. Well, I am now on revision 3 and it is performing quite nicely, with a 4th revision around the corner. Those of you that have been with LABB from the onset have probably noticed a change in the smoothness of LABB drumsticks.
Another process of finishing was getting a finish on the stick that I was happy with and drummers were also accustomed too. I wanted to pursue a lacquer finish and also a finish that would be "eco" friendly not only for the environment but also myself. Nearly all petro based lacquers have obnoxious chemicals in them that will do bodily harm showing damage only after prolonged use. Since my shop is small and I do not have the space for an isolated booth, I set out to use a water base, low VOC, lacquer that would not require the use of a respirator and also keep me within the confines of regulations. Through much trial and error, I have developed a tumbled, then hand rubbed, lacquer finish that is on nearly every drumstick LA BackBeat sells since the beginning of 2017. This is a very time consuming and noisy process and I have had to increase the retail price for this extra time, as well as a couple other processes. Since I have started the process I have been formulating an idea for a new shorter, less noisy, process of applying lacquer to the stick. It is currently under development and will hopefully be put into effect on or before the turn of 2018.
These are but a few of my ramblings in the new LABB Report.
Thanks for everyone's support.
All the best!!