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Balance Point?
Question 
I have a question for you dart fanatics.

I was just reading Titan's review of the Monster Solider Darts (great review by the way) and majeek had asked him about the center of gravity (balance point) of the dart and it got me to thinking. Also last night I was reading a thread where a member was asking for help on getting a consistent grip and release point and another member gave an explanation on feeling the balance point of the dart to find the "correct grip".

My question is does the balance point of a dart be taken into consideration when you purchase new darts? Does your grip change when you use darts with a different balance point?

I'm asking because it is something I have NEVER thought about. It doesn't matter what type, shape or weight of dart I pick up and throw I always grip in the same position, always at the tip of the dart.

I understand how a dart travels through the air and how your stems and flights affect it but I'm asking because I'm wondering if I'm missing something.
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I have used many different types from front loaded, back loaded, straight barrel, thin, thick, razor, smooth etc. etc. (GT3, Stratos, M3, Hankey, Pipe, Razor etc. etc. etc.) all with different balance points and I like you throw from basically the same place on the dart (just past mid) and the only thing I have found is the way the dart flies and more so how it lands in board. An example is GT3 (heavily front loaded), when I threw these from the mid/rear they would wobble and land almost horizontal or slightly downward, when I gripped them from near the front they landed flight up and on a nice parabolic curve. The only way I could throw them 'nice' being straight, no wobble etc was gripping them near the front. Not saying that I wasn't throwing them good from my usual mid/rear grip but the dart didn't react like it should so had to modify to a front placement, so I guess I have found that it does make a difference, but only on drastically moved balance points. Wow, hope that makes sense. BTW you darts should have arrived or will within the next day or two.
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Medicine Hat Darts League---------------------------------                 Darts Used: 22g One80 R2 Renegade's
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In addition to Leaky's insights.

The setup you use or choose influences your balance point. The same manner your barrel's BP determines the appropriate set up for you.
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Thank you something I took for granted that I thought everyone should know and left out. That is one of the reasons I like front loaded darts I can get away with using smaller flights like Slim or Super Kites (Fit Flight user) where on most straight barrel darts I can't unless I drill them out making them front loaded.
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Medicine Hat Darts League---------------------------------                 Darts Used: 22g One80 R2 Renegade's
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The front weight can and does affect the grip for me at least. I add on a conversion tip to my soft tip darts I can feel the difference between the .2g and the 1g up front. Makes the darts fly different and land in the board different if I use the same grip and setup.
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I'd like to share this interesting article by John Brann that defines dart gripping methods relative to the location of your balance point, and throwing.
===============================================
Push Or Pull?

Well which is it? Are you a pusher or puller? There are many different ways to hold a dart but there are really only two methods for throwing a dart. You either push it towards the target or your pull it towards the target. Neither method is better than the other but after years of observation I've come to the conclusion that there are only two ways to throw a dart, push or pull. As if you need one more thing to think about while you're trying to hit a double. “Should I pull or push my dart to the double?”. Well it doesn't really matter, you should continue to throw the way you have always thrown your dart and never try to mix techniques. With all the darts being shown on television its given everyone an opportunity to observe many different types of grips and throws from the people who actually play darts for a living. The best players in the world.

The difference between pushing and pulling your dart is very simple. It is also very difficult to detect which technique some players are using. Let's start with the description of a player who pushers their dart. The pushers are in the vast majority of players, probably 80%. The characteristics of a push throw are very simple. The dart is gripped anywhere from just behind the middle of the dart, right back to the very end. Some may even grip the dart on the shaft. Notable players who push their dart are Phil Taylor, John Part, Roland Scholten, Terry Jenkins, Eric Bristow and many many others. They propel their dart at the board in a similar fashion to throwing a paper airplane. They launch it from the middle to back of the center of gravity of the dart. The dart flies the same way as s missile, all the thrust is from the rear. Its important that the player using this technique has a steady hand and releases the dart smoothly. Because the thrust is coming from the back of the dart the slightest wobble in the release will be accentuated and result in a very inaccurate throw.

A person who pulls their dart grips it in front of the centre of gravity and releases it in a very controlled chucking motion. Similar to throwing a knife but without the end over end action. A couple of professionals who throw in this manner are John Manley and Raymond Van Barneveld. Next time you see them on television pay close attention to how they throw and release their dart, especially Manley. They really only grip the dart with their thumb and index finger. The other fingers are just for balance and don't play any role in propelling the dart through the air. Unlike the missile type throw of a push thrower where the thrust comes from the rear. A puller imparts thrust from the front of the dart like a single engine Cessna pulls itself through the air.

Knowing how you throw your dart really doesn't matter. Its all about results. But knowing there are different ways to throw a dart can be interesting. So next time you're planted in front of the television and darts is on, pay attention to how the players throw their darts. They're all great and they all have different ways of gripping the dart. But they either push or pull. There's no other way.
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(09-10-2015, 05:34 PM)Shanesaw Wrote: I have a question for you dart fanatics.

I was just reading Titan's review of the Monster Solider Darts (great review by the way) and majeek had asked him about the center of gravity (balance point) of the dart and it got me to thinking. Also last night I was reading a thread where a member was asking for help on getting a consistent grip and release point and another member gave an explanation on feeling the balance point of the dart to find the "correct grip".

My question is does the balance point of a dart be taken into consideration when you purchase new darts? Does your grip change when you use darts with a different balance point?

I'm asking because it is something I have NEVER thought about. It doesn't matter what type, shape or weight of dart I pick up and throw I always grip in the same position, always at the tip of the dart.

I understand how a dart travels through the air and how your stems and flights affect it but I'm asking because I'm wondering if I'm missing something.

I think getagrip is probably best suited to answer your question on this, but I think shape of dart and areas of textrue are going to have a much bigger difference on your grip than balance point.

If you look at several of grip's reviews you can see how the balance point is going to change based on the setup you supply - so if you prefer a particular balance point you only need to change the setup to achieve the desired result.
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Good question Shanesaw and also good answers.

To jump on your topic and along the same lines - over the years, I've tried probably a hundred barrels or more. I notice that a lot of barrels have a ring in a certain spot. I am wondering if this represents the balance point? Also, if that is so, is it based on a specific shaft length?
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Thanks for the replies guys. They are all great answers but I think you have missed my question lol Like I had stated in my OP I very much understand balance and how a dart travels. I very much understand how your given setup can change how your dart will travel through the air.

My question again is do you choose darts to buy because of a given/perceived balance point thinking that they "should" work for you? Also do you change your grip depending on where the balance point may be trying to get the dart to "work" for you?

I ask this because I have never thought about it at all with any dart that I have used. If the dart isn't landing in the board how I like it then I change my stem length, usually just a couple of mm.
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No I don't buy a dart on given/perceived balance point, I buy on design and my preference, willing to try anything, as my bank account shows. I do have to modify/change my grip as kinda stated earlier to get the dart to respond for me. I do also tune all my darts when I get them. Try different flights, shafts and sizes regarding both. But I have found with front loaded darts I need to change my placement to front or they do not fly true no matter what flights/stems I use. A great question and topic.
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Medicine Hat Darts League---------------------------------                 Darts Used: 22g One80 R2 Renegade's
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I will move my grip front to back depending on the balance point if changing flights\stems doesn't help move it where I want it.

I just really hate when I throw my soft tips and I have a good grip and setup working then add the conversion points (unless I use the carbon Lstyle tips) and the darts start to fly bad and I have to move my grip or adjust my setup to match the new balance point of the dart. Makes it hard to practice on a steel board sometimes.
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Answer: YES.

I like front loaded darts so naturally my selection of darts will be focused to those types (being assured of where the perceived balance point is) if I am planning to buy one.

In my earlier response I just emphasized my openness to other barrel types as the CoG can be "altered or influenced" by the a-type of setup which you will be using; and b- by the positioning of your grip. Sorry if it sounded as a "off topic".
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Thanks for the replies guys.

Majeek I liked and appreciated your other post, it was a good article and gives people some insight on how they throw (push/pull). Wasn't off topic, I was just looking for a specific answer in which you just gave me. Thanks Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.
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I will choose rear weighted darts over mid or front loaded. My first "coach"/mentor told me find the balance point.... the thumb goes there.....

Here is my thinking (and it seems to work):

I am a rear gripper. If the balance point is near the front of the dart, on release, the dart may begin to twist downwards. Or I may not be pushing with the CM directly between my fingers and the board..... either will introduce a wobble ( vertical or horizontal, maybe both ). Either makes it more difficult to control the dart, and grouping the darts is hard. I have *never* been able to overcome this with stems. On some darts, the shape is such that I can move the grip closer to the CM. The darts work, but I don't like it much.

I'd rather have the CM closer to the thumb.

The current darts I am using are the Keegan Brown, 22g. They have a rear balance point, which happens to be quite close to where I put my thumb. It is still not exact, so a push with a misaligned dart can still create a minor wobble.

I used to have a set of Harrows Wolfram (23g). Those had a rearwards balance point as well. They were excellent, in that there was virtually no wobble at all.

I attribute this to the CoG being so close to the thumb, I could not misalign it to create any significant wobble -- with medium length shaft and standard flights, the dart would stabilize its flight path quickly and fly towards the target without the point hunting up/down/sideways..... Those darts had a micro-grip that did not last very long... also being 97%, they were a bit on the skinny side. But the COG was in a great spot on the dart.

The Keegan Brown is very similar in that regard. A bit thicker, and it has a proper grip. Just add tridents and you are good to go.

If you think about the Taylor Gen 2 and his grip, the scalloping guarantees that his thumb will be exactly the same distance from the CoG every time. I am sure that the width of the dart is related to his grip and is optimized so that *in his hands* that CoG will align perfectly between the pinch point and the dartboard.

It appears that his push is so accurate ( the dart is so perfectly balanced in his grip ) that he can use those tiny flights. Which is a HUGE advantage... they are so small, they reduce deflections CONSIDERABLY.

So yeah, the location of the CoG matters a lot.
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I say it matters absolutely zero when picking a dart. You can tweak the balance point easily with a stem and/or flight change.
-Milky

Keeping dart retailers in business since 2012.
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