Dartboard Selection and Care
Dartboards are made up of compressed sisal fibers glued to a backing board held together by an outer metal band. The main advantage of this type of construction is that when you remove a dart from the board, the hole will heal behind it. This means bristle dart boards tend to last a lot longer than any other type of dartboard.
To ensure long life, look for a dart board that meets competition standards. Cheaper dart boards tend not to pack the bristles as tightly as quality boards and will wear a lot more quickly. Also, sisal is widely regarded as the best fiber for bristle dartboards, so avoid any made of other materials. Damage will eventually occur to your bristle dartboard, so look for a removable number ring that will allow you to rotate the board.
Dartboards need to have the wear evenly spaced across the entire surface of the board or the board will become prematurely worn out through over-compaction of the sisal. All quality darts boards are fitted with a moveable number ring, which should be rotated on a regular basis. A board that is regularly used should be rotated bi-weekly by moving the '20' through to the next blank segment i.e., '20' would become '12'. The only area of the board, which cannot be preserved by turning, is the bullseye area. It is essential that when you are practicing you do not continually shoot at the bullseye, as this area of the board will wear out. Remember to spread your wear.
Bristle boards, being manufactured from sisal, a natural fibre, are susceptible to moisture damage. Therefore under no circumstances should any moisture be placed onto the board. There is an “old wives tale” that you can revive a dartboard by spraying the board with water. This is false, it will cause the sisal fibres to swell and destroy the board.
A key element in maintaining your dartboard is maintaining the points of your darts. Ensure points are kept sharp and not blunt or hooked. A dart with a hook will damage a bristle board quickly as it will pull the fibre out and blunt (worn) dart points cause over-compaction - check your dart points and sharpen or replace as required or they will prematurely wear out your board.