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Mad Robin Music and Dance

Spotlight on Studio 49 S5 Mallets
By: Margaret Swain  -  10/30/2017

The orange ball Studio 49 S5 is one of my favorite mallets. It is intended for rosewood soprano xylophones and comes with the Studio 49 SX 2000. The durability and sound response is exceptional, and the diameter of the orange ball makes it easy to use with either wide or narrow bar instruments.

If you have very old Studio 49 instruments in your classroom you may see some mallets that are similar to the S5, but have a ball that is red. These mallets preceded the S5. It's worth trying these with your rosewood SX, because they may work just fine. In other cases that I have seen, the red ball mallets have become hardened with age. While it doesn't happen right away, rubber and plastic head mallets can become brittle after decades of use and need to be replaced.

To test your SX mallets, listen to the tone as you play a solo. You should hear a pleasant resonance throughout the range, with nothing harsh or brittle. Your mallet test will be most accurate if your instruments are in good condition with flexible tubing under the bars and around the nails, and with nails that are aligned correctly. You are welcome to contact me for repair advice and to purchase parts for your older barred instruments. I also offer an Orff instrument repair service. Once your instruments are in good condition, you'll be able to test your existing mallets and select the best one for each instrument.

Click HERE to view the Mallets section of our website, where you can purchase the S5 and dozens of other classroom mallets.

The Studio 49 SX 2000 shown with a pair of S5 mallets.

Margaret Swain Margaret Swain

I enjoy working to connect teachers to quality books and instruments for music and dance education. I hope you find my blog useful and interesting.
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