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How to choose the right Dart Boards

Many speculate that the game of darts began in the Middle Ages when soldiers played with shortened spears and arrows and threw these at a targets made of tree trunks or barrel bottoms.

Eventually, the spears and the wooden stumps got smaller and finally, someone had the bright idea of bringing the target indoors. Perhaps if it weren’t for the fun atmosphere of the English pub, darts would have probably been altogether lost to its medieval beginnings.

Fortunately, darts still keeps the popularity it has enjoyed throughout the centuries. And with the help of new technology, the game’s enjoyment can be passed on to generations after.

If you’re looking into the game as a hobby, it would do you well to read up on dart equipment, particularly with the darts themselves. But that is not to say that the second most important component of the game should be overlooked – and that is the dartboard.

Present-day dartboards are made up of different materials. The most popular of which are cork, sisal and some synthetic materials.

As far as measurement goes, a regulation size target area for a dartboard is 15.5 inches. Most boards in the market have a diameter of 18 inches.

Bristle Dart boards

Early dartboards were made out of coarse hog hairs called bristles and the term still remains even if alternative materials have long been used to replace it.

The most common material used for bristle boards are cork and sisal. If you’re familiar with cork, you would know that the material crumbles easily especially when it’s subjected to as much poking as the average pub dartboard can attest to.

Fortunately, there is sisal. Sisal is a fibrous material commonly used in making rope. When a dart punctures the material, the fibers give way to the point so it nestles in between fibers. No actual hole and damage is made, which means the board can last a whole lot longer than cork.

New and experienced players alike have their shares of bounce outs. Bounce outs happen when dart hits a section of a dartboard that’s covered with wire or staple.

These wires and staples are called spiders and are usually found on the surface of the board. Spiders form the demarcation lines for scoring areas on the board. Since a dart’s point cannot penetrate the spider, the dart bounces off the board – ergo, the bounce out.

Dart makers have addressed the problem from their end by making retractable tip darts. When the tips of these darts hits a spider, it moves back slightly into the body and allows the momentum of the throw to push the tip right back into the board.

Dartboard makers on the other hand are providing the solution by imbedding thin spiders inside the board. The demarcation lines are still visible, but the problem of bounce outs is greatly reduced.


Electronic dart boards

Don’t you just love it when technology makes a good thing better?

Electronic dart boards provide the convenience of tallying a player’s score during a game eliminating the need for the tedious chalk markings.

These dartboards work by with a set of sensors that detect the area where a dart has landed. These areas have been pre-programmed with a corresponding score. When a dart hits the board, a sensor goes off and sends the information to a simple computer attached to the dartboard. The computer in turn displays the score and tallies it with the other previous hits.

Given their more sensitive nature, most electronic dart boards only work with soft tip darts. Fortunately, some dartboard manufacturers have been able to combine the robustness of a bristle board with the convenience of an electronic one, allowing players to use steel tip darts on this kind of electronic dartboard.

In professional competitions, you can imagine that the issue of accuracy and precision in scoring is of great importance. And this has led electronic dartboard makers to step up the quality of their products. Even if you have no serious intentions of pursuing the game to that level, these competition-grade boards are available to you as well.

Other variations of the standard dartboard are available ranging from those catered towards children to highly elaborate and customized ones complete with a cabinet and backboard set.

Whatever your choice for a dart board, it’s still that coveted bull’s eye that is the common goal of every dart player. A good part of the game’s pleasure may ride on that goal, but a good part of it also rests in the attempt as well.


  More Dart Articles

Dart Equipment
How to select the right equipment for your dart game

Dart Boards
How to choose the right Dart Board

Darts and Flights
The components of Darts

Dart Rules
Learn the dart rules the easy way

Darts History
Interesting facts about the history of the darts game

Darts Technique
Learn the technique on how to throw the darts

How to become a Pro Dart Player
The secrets of becoming a pro dart player

Championship of Darts

Pro Darts Tournaments 


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