There are plenty of dartboards to choose from, but which are the best bristle dartboards? With so many options, it can be hard to narrow down the ones that are going to last long, work well, and ensure hours of exciting darts play in your own house.
That’s why we’ve put together this guide of some of the best horsehair dartboards and sisal dartboards on the market so that you can make an informed decision. Read on to get details on 4 popular bristle dart boards people are using to play darts.
1. TG Champion Tournament Bristle Dartboard
Right out of the gate, we have the TG Champion Bristle Dartboard, a model that is, in many ways, the archetypical board.
It comes with a staple-free bullseye spider so that you don’t have to worry as much about bounce outs in the center ring and the wiring is reasonably thin so it doesn’t block as much of the board. It staples the rest of the way around, but that’s pretty standard with most middle-of-the-road options.
The biggest problem with this particular board is that it’s an example of a company trying to save money by not packing it as tight. The sisal fibers that make up a dartboard are supposed to be dyed and packed very tightly. In this case, the fibers are a bit looser, resulting in more frequent gashes and damage, and the bristles have been painted, which reduces their ability to close.
For the price, this is not a bad dartboard. Just don’t expect it to last you for several years. Play with it for a year or so, then replace it with something better.
2. Winmau Blade 5 Bristle Dartboard
One of the absolute standards for professional play, the Blade 5 is the kind of dartboard that you find at tournaments around the world. Rather than a full spider, this one has an adjustable scoring ring around the outside and thin, triangular razor wire embedded between the sisal to clearly mark the scoring segments while also providing a shape that guides darts into the board rather than deflecting them into the air. The reduction in wire width ends up increasing the potential play area by 14%, adding up to 6 square millimeters per treble.
The bristles are tightly packed and heal incredibly well. This is also an improvement on the previous model, which used to be the tournament standard, that makes the angle of the razor wire steeper, reduces the size, and brightens the colors of the fibers to make them easier to see.
If there’s an issue with this board, it’s that the mounting hardware isn’t great. It’s not bad, either, and once you get it mounted you should have no trouble taking it off the wall and putting it back up if you need to, but that initial time is a bit long.
Beyond that, if you’re looking for a reasonably priced, high quality dartboard, you absolutely won’t go wrong with a Blade 5. These are the top of the industry and well worth every penny.
3. Wuudi Dart Board Double-Sided Flocking Dartboard
This dartboard is a solid choice. Let’s get that out of the way before delving any further into it.
It’s not a bad dartboard, particularly for the price. In fact, that it is not only two sided, but one side is regulation color and segmentation and the other is alternating black and white to aid in practice is actually a good idea.
There are a few problems, however. It’s disappointing that the number ring is painted on the board rather than being adjustable since that means you won’t be able to shift the board and more evenly distribute damage.
I don’t think I would mind that the bullseye is stapled so much (many dartboards in this price range have that), but the attempt in the Amazon description to pretend that this was an intentional attempt to up the challenge rather than a way of saving money (“…bullseye is harder than other parts in order to increase challenges for this game, instead of quality problems”) is transparent and a bit too obvious. This might also be referring to the fact that the bullseye is physically harder than the rest of the board which, again, sounds more like a post hoc excuse than a calculated attempt to make it more challenging.
Ignoring that, however, the board is pretty good. The felt covering is a nice touch and there was a real attempt to make the spider with as thin of wires as possible to minimize bounce outs. If it were expensive, it would be overpriced, but the current price seems about right for what you’re getting in terms of value.
4. Viper League Pro Sisal/Bristle Steel Tip Dartboard
Viper is the king of mid-range dartboards, providing what is often the highest quality possible in that price point. While the Shot King is not their greatest board, the League Pro is actually near the high end of their products.
Regulation size and with a reasonably thin, galvanized wire spider, this sisal dartboard features a staple free bullseye as well to increase the playable area. They painted their fibers instead of using dyed ones, so it doesn’t close up as well as it should, but it does heal damage passably.
The darts that come with it will work a few times, but you should look into replacing them pretty quickly. They’re just there to give you something to play with until you buy something of a slightly higher quality.
While this does come with a chalk cricket board, it’s not very good. It’s textured, so the eraser that comes with it doesn’t actually work well at all. I would use this as a template to make a better board, either with chalkboard paint on wood or using a dry erase board.
The movable number ring will help you get more life out of this board and it can last probably a year or two without much trouble if you play semi-regularly. At that point, you should be ready to upgrade to a better board. For beginners, though, this is a good start.
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