Darts Buddy

Player introduction

     I am a new player from West Virginia, United States.

Recently some of my friends have been getting into darts and I've been invited to play and
really enjoyed the experience.  Steel tipped darts on bristle board.

I would really like to get some advice here for a new thrower if possible, specifically with dart selection.

Seems that most anyone will tell you that each dart thrower is different and what works for one
will not work for another, and that you need to try different things etc; that I need to keep an open
mind and explore the options.  However I seem to get some resistance asking people about
things that aren't standard. 

I like to look at things logically and scientifically, and I do not like to just assume that the prevailing
wisdom is best when I try something new.

Specifically, I cannot help but thinking of the flights that are used on literally every throwing dart
that I have ever seen.  I have seen several sources which claim that the purpose of the flights
on the dart is to keep the point of the dart toward the board to improve penetration.  These same
sources also admit that the flights create drag and are another variable in accurate throwing.

Throwing with my friends this weekend, everyone remarked about the power of my throws.
Seriously the entire night I am getting comments about how I better not release late or people
will die, and lots of comments about the meaty "THWACK" sound made when my darts hit the board.
Not that I am trying to kill the throw, but apparently my natural throw is just quite powerful.
This morning I have some nasty soreness in my arm, so I know where the power came from Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.

My question is, if I use a front weighted dart with powerful throws, what is the need for flights on the dart?
In this situation, wouldn't the flights just be more a variable than a help?

Looking online, I cannot find darts designed to be thrown without flights anywhere.  I called a couple of stores
and they treated me like I was a moron chewing on a piece of hay and smelling of turds.

Am I the first person to consider the idea that it might be better for some people to throw darts without

I would love to get some more perspective on this.

Also looking to get a decent bristle board - so far the Viper Shot King sisal/bristle steel tip dartboard
with staple-free bullseye seems the most cost effective choice at $30.  Perhaps someone could make
a better suggestion?  Is it worth another $20 to get an entirely staple free board?

I much appreciate anyone who takes the time to provide input.

Welcome! I am nit sure if you have ever tried to throw without a flight but I'm pretty sure that is not going to end well.
I have seen some people throw nails and recently a video of Kyle Anderson throwing with straws as flights. With the nails it works because they are really light, the little head is enough to keep it point first but they still land in every angle possible.

For example: Rockets need to be very precise and they all have fins to keep them stable, in archery they use flights/feathers too.

Slims or dxm/Taylor flights might work for you if you feel you need a smaller flight. A player who's darts fly and land really nice in my eyes is Mark Mcgeeney, he uses very small flights:
Hello Bill, welcome aboard the Nutz forum. :hithere:
Hi welcome to the Nutz - and the forum.  You will fit right in.

Try signing up for Flight School -there's a link here on the forum . Any Nutz who tried it has benefitted.

By varying flight shape, it allows you to adjust the way the dart flys through the air and lands in the board (tail up, tail down or straight).  Experimenting with various shapes until you find one that fits both your style of throwing and the darts you happen to be tossing at the time is part of the fine tuning process.  

Another factor is stems- they come in various lengths as well.  Working out that in conjunction with flights - well - it can be fun or you might wind up reaching for a beer or similar anesthetic.

Then there's weight.  What weight are you throwing?

Then there's dart shape.  You need to be able to hold the dart at the same point, throw it the same way for consistency.  I started, like most darters with a bullet shape with essentially smooth rings evenly spaced, then progressed from there to a scalloped dart where I would always have consistency in my finger placement.  That worked for me.  Go find some Designa or McKicks or tommys or Nodors in s couple shapes and weights and experiment.  Weight might be a factor - I like the 22 to 24 gram range myself.  Where you hold the dart (front middle, back) will help narrow the field a bit.

As to dartboards Blade 4 or 5, dual core is my favorite.  Staples cause bounce outs.  The newer spiders are better- spend the money for a better dartboard, but look at the info here to pick the one you would like best.  And mount it regulation height and shoot from regulation distance for practise.  Consistency is key.

Most important of all - practise is key.
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Welcome to Nutz, Bill :hithere:

Try throwing your darts at the board without flights . . . see what happens & what the consistency is like. Draw your own conclusions Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.

If funds allow, an entirely stable free board with the 'blade' type spider is the way to go. You'll get way too many bounce outs from the thick, round wires and staples.
But if a staple board is all that is possible, then yeah, go for it & enjoy. Lots of people still use staple boards . . . but a blade spider is so much better.

Enjoy your new darting hobby, & good luck Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.

Match Darts : MvG 23g Masterdarts  /  Dartboard : Bulls Advantage 3
Hello and welcome, Bill!  I can only echo what had been said in the previous posts.  I believe that it is truly different from player to player when its comes to what set up is best.  If you are throwing as powerfully as you say, you might try a lighter dart.  That, along with time at the oche may alleviate some of the soreness in your arm.  As far as flights go, throwing a dart without one is like throwing a shingle in a whirlwind......who knows where it's going to go?  More than anything, a flight provides stability for the dart, just like an arrow or a rocket as mentioned before.  The style of dart you use will depend on where you grip your dart.  Some guys like a short fat barrel, while some...like me, prefer a longer slimmer one.  It's truly up to you.  Now for a board, the thinner the wire, the better.  The Winmau Blade 4 is a great buy.  The Blade 5 just came out not long ago and the price of the 4 has come down somewhat.  If you can, spend the extra cash and buy a thin wire board.  As your game improves, you will notice and appreciate the difference.  Main thing is, enjoy the game.  You don't have to spend a load of cash to get a decent set up in place.  Plus, like most of us here, once the dart bug has bitten, the fever sets in fast and you'll be Nutz in no time!  Welcome aboard and enjoy the forum!
Appreciate the quick responses everyone, more than I expected by far.

It seems there is a healthy contempt for my suggestion that flightless darts may work.

Might I ask if anyone here has ever seen or thrown a dart that was designed to throw without the use of flights?
A couple have suggested trying to throw standard darts without flights and see how it works.  I can speculate that
trying to use any dart in a way it wasn't designed for isn't likely to get you good results, and I wouldn't expect to
do anywhere near decently if I took the flights off a dart that is designed to be used with flights.

I feel like the concept of a flightless dart is dismissed out of hand by every dart player I have talked to, but no one has
admitted trying a dart designed to be thrown without flights.  Maybe I am just a newbie, but I am imagining a machined
front heavy dart made entirely of one piece of metal.

My thought is that if you use a heavier dart with a lot of weight toward the front, it will not go all over the place as it flies
and would allow you to throw straight into the board with a hard throw. 

I'm a bit confused about why darts come in multiple parts anyway.  I understand that the flights break as you
throw tight groupings, but why not have a point, barrel, and shaft machined from one piece instead of multiple pieces?

I realize that I'll have to do a lot of experimenting to figure out what works for me, but I have yet to see a scientific study
which shows that darts without flights can't work.  I'll try not to get stuck on the idea but the way darts are designed makes
very little sense to me.

I'm really trying to figure out the reasoning behind dart design and such so that I can direct my search for the proper dart a little better.

I've tried 18g, 22g, and 26g darts.  I haven't thrown a lot with any of them, but best results by far were with the heaviest darts.
I have read that a strong thrower should use lighter darts, but I don't seem to find any justification for this other than they need
to be thrown hard to stick to the board.  My thoughts are that a heavier dart would be less susceptible to variations in throwing
and therefore more consistent.

I hold the dart near the front, and I feel that maybe a short dart would be best for me to avoid wobble.
At the moment I don't think I'm a fan of knurling, and I think a dart that is wider toward the front would work better,
to prevent my fingers from slipping forward on the dart.

Is there any need for a dual core board if you have no worries about getting your darts to penetrate?

Appreciate the recommendations from everyone, I'm feeling a bit lost to start here with all of the options.
Hi Bill. Welcome. The only flightless darts I have are throwing nails. Some (not me) have been known to be quite good with them.
I must admit that I have thrown a dart without a flight before. A single dart.....once. I ended up searching this forum for ways to remove a shaft, broken off at the threads, even with the barrel. A small, thin screwdriver heated in the flame of a Zippo for about 45 seconds works perfectly, I have to say. I felt rather silly and haven't spoken of it until now.
- Red

Current Favorite:
Unicorn James Wade Phase 1 (20g)---Short Nylon/Poly Shafts---Marathon/No.6 Shape Flights  

Winmau Blade 5
I kind of feel like a jerk for going back to this again, but I really do not feel anyone here is interested in truly considering the merits of a flightless dart.

I've gotten some fairly sarcastic remarks about seeing what happens if I take the flights off of darts and try to throw them, but this adds nothing to the discussion. I make no contention that standard darts would work well without the flights; they are designed to be used with flights and I would not expect them to work well without them.

My understanding is that a flight on a dart's main purpose is to stabilize the dart such that the point keeps a proper angle to penetrate the board. If a dart were designed such that, when properly thrown, the point remains in proper orientation to penetrate the board without flights, I do not see the need for flights and no one has been able to explain why flights would be needed in such a case, or why such a dart design isn't possible.

I see a lot of talk in consistency in darts, and the flights scream to me as a point of inconsistency. It is another variable to worry about, and if you can eliminate a variable in this game of precision, it is beneficial to do so.

I've seen some commentary on how other precise projectiles, such as rockets and arrows, use flights or something like them, but this is not evidence that throwing darts absolutely require them. There are also projectiles thrown with great accuracy at distance, such as spears and javelins, that do not require any sort of wings to maintain a proper trajectory.

It staggers my belief that with our current level of technology, that it would be impossible to design a throwing dart that sticks in the board without the need of small wings behind it to create lift.

If you had a short dart that was front heavy, gripped it toward the front and threw it hard and directly into the board without much of an arc, I do not see the need for flights. The dart will stay oriented to penetrate the board, and you will have removed a variable from your throw.
Seems like a win, but no one seems able to explain why this isn't possible.

Perhaps one way of getting around the needs for flights would be to add a gyroscopic component to darts, which may be less variable than relying on lift from the air in the room.

I get that everyone throws darts with flights, and that there are reasons for that. What I don't get is the unwillingness to question the tradition and explore alternatives. I know it seems off the wall, but how many of you have actually seriously questioned the use of flights and possible ways to get around needing them?

So please, if anyone has constructive input on this topic I would appreciate it. Another person telling me that standard darts suck when you take off the flights and try to throw them is no help at all.
Welcome ,,, Enjoy,,,Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.
Guests cannot see images in the messages. Please register at the forum by clicking here to see images.
Welcome to the forum Bill.
If an object is designed to be thrown without flights then I see no reason why it wouldn't work. However, I think it would need to be designed still with some stabilising feature toward the rear just like the fins on a rocket. There have been darts in the past moulded from a single piece of tungsten, i.e. the point and barrel was all one piece (Target Pure range), but these still required a shaft and flight. The main problem with these was that people founf with use that the point would wear down fairly quickly and as it couldn't be replaced then the darts as whole wore out so you may have to look into some other metal from which to craft your darts.
This may be something that the Uniboffin on the Unicorn website (https://www.unicorn-darts.com/news/profi...offin.aspx) would be interested in discussing with you and then you could let us know the results of the chat as the technicalities are beyond my knowledge for a full in depth conversation
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Darts Setup: 23g DPC Extreme Performance, Black Target Pro Grip Stems, Target Vision 100 Standard Flights, 35mm Gold CD Mk3 Points
Previous Darts Setup: 23g DPC Gun Metal Elite, Medium Black Target Pro Grip Stems, Standard Black V180 Flights, 30mm Black Grooved Storm Points

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