If you would play winning darts, you must first know the dimensions of play. The center of the dartboard is mounted 68 inches above the floor. The toe line (hereafter I will simply refer to it as the line) is seven feet nine and one-quarter inches from the face of the dartboard. The line should not be measured from the wall without adding the thickness of the dartboard and the backboard to your measurement.
If you think it's not critical, try throwing three inches in front of the line or three inches in back of it after playing at regulation distance for awhile. You will notice how critical those few inches are.
Burn the dimensions of play into your brain, and never hesitate to question them. If you think the dartboard or the line is off, it likely is. Better to be wrong that uncertain, because uncertainty may nag you into throwing darts on the wrong side of the wire. Shooting at the wrong distance will really screw up your game. So be sure your practice board is correctly hung with the center of the bill at 68 inches, and the line seven feet nine and one-quarter inches from the face of the board. It doesn't sound like such a far distance to throw a dart until you try to hit a specific target, such as a double or triple.
Now let's take a look at steel tipped darts. They come in a variety of shapes and weights and are made of different metals. Brass is the metal of choice for low priced, house darts. High percentage tungsten alloy darts are at the top end of the price and quality spectrum, with the most sophisticated dart sets costing more than $150. The difference between the most and least expensive darts has to do with metal used to make barrels, and the quality, the length and the sophistication of the points.
Tungsten is a dense metal that is heavier and harder than lead. This translates into a thinner barrel, which allows tighter groups than are possible with fat brass darts. Serious players consider the weight and balance of tungsten darts to be superior. However, there are some very good bar players out there who will give you a sound spanking with brass darts that look like they came out of the belly of a B52. A great thing about this game is that you can't beat an opponent by outspending him on equipment.
Until Next Time!