Traditional numbering drumsticks models such as 3S, 2B, 5B, 5A, 7A, and was the first conventional drumsticks numbering, where figures and letters meanе sticks size and its purpose. Precise specification of each model differed slightly from one manufacturer to another, especially in areas of tapper and tip.
Numerical position figuratively denotes the diameter (or rather thickness) of a drumstick. Basically, a smaller number means a larger diameter, and a big number means a smaller diameter. For example, the sticks 7A are smaller in diameter than 5A, which in turn are thinner than 2B. Exception is only 3S, which is larger in diameter than 2B, despite the numerical figure.
Letter designations «S», «B», «A» and «N» earlier indicated scope of using of particular model, but today almost completely lost its meaning.
«S» meant «Street». Initially, this sticks model was intended for to play in marching band or drum orchestras, where it is assumed more power strokes and volume performance; respectively the drumsticks of this group have the largest size.
«B» meant «Band». Originally, these drumsticks intended for use in brass band and symphonic orchestras. They have larger tip and shoulder (for louder playing) than the model "A". Typically used in heavy noise music. They are easier controlled and recommended for beginners. Model 2B is especially recommended for teachers as ideal start up sticks.
«A»comes from the word «Оrchestra». On grounds of legendary drummer and percussion instruments creator William Ludwig the letter "A” was used, instead of the letter "O" which when printed, in his opinion, “A” looked better than "O". Models «A» was originally developed for big bands; band playing dance music.
Usually these sticks thinner than models «B», they have thinner neck and small tips, which gives the ability to produce a quiet and soft sound. Usually, this sticks model used in volatile music, such as jazz, blues, pops, etc. Model "A" is the most popular among drummers.
«N» means «Nylon» is a relatively new designation. It is appended to the end labeling (e.g., «5A N») and indicates the presence of nylon tip.
Company Agner Swissdrumsticks classify also the drumsticks according to music styles in the series Name (Rock, Jazz, etc.).