Accessories to help your darts game
There are many, many accessories currently on the market today to help with your darts game. In this post we will identify just a few that are readily available in the market today that are there to help you improve your average and in turn your darts game.
Rosin / Wax
There are many different rosin’s, powders and wax varieties on the market today which are designed to help you grip your dart barrel better. Thus, avoid slipping or releasing the dart early which will result on the dart landing higher on the board than anticipated.
These can come in small bar form for waxes or bags of chalk or rosin. The idea that these products will help your grip is a personal one and down to the dart player’s choice. I’ve known some player’s putting their darts into a glass of water and in one case a glass of ice in between shots in the effort to get better grip on their darts.
These are very common and are typically made from aluminium and are approximately 5mm long. They fit or clip on top of the flight where the wings intersect and are used, as the name suggests to “protect” and extend the life of your flights. A sharpened dart point can easily split a flight. Once split, it’s typically time for a change of flights.
N.B. Remember, if you do use flight protectors, they may increase the weight in the back end of the entire dart setup and affect, in some cases the trajectory and landing of the dart.
Springs and Rings
Springs are typically made from metal or aluminium and are designed to fit on the end of your nylon stem (prior to putting on the flight), to create a better grip of the stem to the flight. There have been creations such as a castle shaped spring in some cases, but the normal, more common “spring” is purely ring shaped. These can also be placed into the hole of the flight that has been (hole) punched to provide an even better hold between the stem and flight.
Rings, or more accurately O-Rings are made from rubber and fit over the thread of aluminium stems to lock the stem in place with the barrel to prevent the stem from coming loose. (A bit like a washer)
Dart cones are also used and are typically plastic and fit on the point and pushed up to where the point meets the barrel. The idea of using a dart cone is to “reduce bounce outs by up to 50%” according to one manufacturer plus they extend the life of your flights.
Sharpen your points
The reason you need to sharpen your points is not so much to reduce bounce outs, given most top quality dartboards have ultra-thin spider wire nowadays. But more to ensure that your dart grips into the board and reduces falling out of the board. There is a multitude of tools for sharpening your points, I won’t bore you with them all. But, do not sharpen them up and down the length of your points. Make sure you use a sharpening stone or tool that make grooves or scratches around the dart point so it will hold into the sisal of your dartboard way better. Ideally a round sharpening stone will do the trick and they’re very cheap!
Change your points
Alternatively, change your points entirely with a “repointing tool”, they’re not a cheap tool though. The benefit is that you can put different points onto your favourite set of dart barrels that are either coloured, already grooved for either finger placement or better dart grip to the board. Points come in a range of lengths too, typically from 22mm right up to 60mm long. (The average point length is 35mm). The different length of your points will affect how your dart lands into the dartboard, but not really by that much. They say for an extra 10mm length in your points it will add 0.3 grams of weight.
Ever seen a basketball player with long leggings under their shorts? It’s a similar thing here with the darts sleeve. These sleeves help provide comfort to the dart player adding support to the area that is mainly used when throwing darts, your arm. Darts sleeves are also used by those with a slight injury or ache in the throwing arm. It is said that after playing is finished, the darts sleeve will also help with your recovery. This is done by improving circulation as oxygenated blood is delivered to the arm muscles that are in need of it most.
I’ve added this “accessory” as it is something that can help your game by protecting your equipment but is not exactly needed to be able to play darts. Spinning stems can come in Nylon or aluminum with the spinning (top 10mm) of the stem made from some type of strong alloy or aluminum. As the flight is fitted into the spinning part of the stem, when the dart lands in the board the flight will spin if landing near and hitting another dart and its flight, thus limiting breakages and prolonging the life of the flights….in theory. Some are not fans of the spinning stem especially if the flight sometimes touches the dart throwers cheek prior to throwing and can spin right in the corner of the eye. Again, it’s just a personal preference, use them or don’t!
The key for a decent set of dartboard lights is to ensure there are no shadows from the dart onto the board. At nearly eight feet away, it is difficult for some in the best of lights to see “is that in the double”? Hence why the most popular lighting setup is the 360° lights that surround the entire dartboard. The downside of these is that they can be expensive. Some are even put off by them, especially when aiming for the double for beginner players. There are also 270° lights that cover the top right down to the 16 on the left and 15 on the right side of the board. Cheaper still are 100° lights that cover the top quarter or so of the board. Cheaper? Yes. Effective? Not as much. Shot Darts recently released the Stadium Dartboard Lighting System that provides four different “floodlights” placed in each corner of a board, a little like a rugby field. Another cost-effective idea at a fraction of the cost.
There are many other “accessories” to help improve your darts game. Hopefully some here may just help you.
Straight Arrows everyone!
Owner – Bullseye Darts