Have you been underperforming in darts as of late? You might be bearing with bad streaks where your darts keep reflecting off the board. You’ll need to sharpen your darts if you’re struggling, as a dull dart won’t stick into the board as well as a sharp one.
Whereas a sharp dart will cut in between the sisal fibers on the board and push them away, a dull dart will push those fibers into the board. The dart could reflect off the board, keeping it from counting on your score. The dart could also potentially hurt someone who gets in the way if it reflects off the board.
Sharpening your darts is essential to keeping you on top of your game while also protecting your dartboard from wear. But what type of dart sharpener should you use, and how do you use such a device? And how often should you be sharpening your darts?
A Quick Note
These details on how to sharpen your darts are applicable to all types of steel tip darts, including ones with refined tungsten or alloy materials. All steel darts will require sharpening at some point.
Common Types of Dart Sharpeners
The first thing to see about how to sharpen your darts involves the types of sharpeners you can use today. Here’s a closer look at some of the best options you can use.
You can start by using an electric sharpener. This tool is a powered model where you’ll place the old dart tip into the sharpening area. The device will help you position your tip at the proper angle to keep it sharp. You can use this choice if you’re not familiar with how a traditional sharpener can work.
A standard manual sharpener gives you more control over the sharpening process, as you will insert the tip into the sharpener and rotate it around the inside. A typical manual sharpener features a cylindrical stone body you can hold in your hand. You’ll control the dart during the process so you can target the proper angle. This option is ideal for more experienced players.
You could also use sandpaper for a basic approach to sharpening darts. You can wrap a sheet of sandpaper around the sides of the dart and rotate the dart.
How to Use a Dart Sharpener
The goal for how to sharpen your darts is to keep the tips slightly rounded. The end half-inch of the sides should also be sharp enough to penetrate the board fibers.
Here are some steps for how to use your dart sharpener. These steps work for electric and manual models alike:
- Insert the first part of the dart tip inside the sharpener hole.
- Rotate the tip in circular motions against the stone inside the sharpener.
- Stop every 30 seconds to see how well the tip looks. You can stop when the tip has a conical appearance.
- Check the sides of the tip to see what angle you should use when sharpening the rest of the tip. Insert the dart further at the proper angle based on what side you want to sharpen the most.
- Repeat the sharpening process for the sides, stopping every 30 seconds to review how even the sides appear. The sides should be even and shouldn’t feature any burrs.
How to Use Sandpaper When Sharpening Your Darts
You can also use sandpaper when sharpening your darts. Here are some steps on how you can use sandpaper:
- Check the quality of the sandpaper first. Fine or medium-grade sandpaper works best for metal.
- Put the sandpaper down on a flat surface.
- Keep the dart perpendicular to the paper and move it in a side-by-side motion to sharpen the top part.
- You can then wrap the sandpaper around the dart sides and rotate the dart to smooth out the rest of the body.
How Sharp Should Your Darts Be?
Be careful when sharpening your darts, as you don’t want them to become too sharp. An overly sharp dart could pierce the sisal fibers on the board and contact the board backing, making it easier for the dart to bounce out while also damaging the backing.
Check your sharpened dart to see how pointy it feels when you run your finger over its tip. You can blunt the dart a bit if it feels too sharp, like a sewing needle.
How Often Should You Sharpen Your Darts?
The timeframe for when you need to sharpen your darts will vary based on how often you use them, but you should sharpen them every couple of months. You can tell your darts require sharpening if you notice they keep bouncing out of the board even when they aren’t hitting any other darts.
What Dart Sharpeners Can You Use Today?
Silver Bullet Dart Sharpener
You can use the Silver Bullet Dart Sharpener as an electric option that uses one CR123A battery. The sharpener is compact and includes a small cap to protect the hole you will insert the dart into. The electric motor will automatically stop when it notices excess force on the inside while you are sharpening your dart.
PSCCO Dart Sharpeners
PSCCO Dart Sharpeners have compact bodies that are 1.6 by 2.5 centimeters in size. You can position the dart tip at any angle you prefer when using one of these sharpeners. The design helps remove burrs while rounding your tips with ease.
Cosmos Round Dart Sharpeners
Cosmos also makes some convenient round sharpeners that are 1 inch high and 0.6 inches wide. The opening on this manual sharpener is wide enough to help you control the angle you’ll use when sharpening your dart without risking further harm to your dart.
A Final Word
A dart sharpener will help you enjoy your darts by ensuring your darts remain sharp and easy to use. Be sure you know how to use your sharpener and that you sharpen your darts when you notice they aren’t connecting to your board as well as usual. Make sure you watch how sharp your darts are to ensure they won’t be too intense.