6 Types Of Dartboards (A clear guide for beginners)

When you want to buy a dartboard, you will notice that it is quite easy to get overwhelmed with the variety of choices. There are different types of dartboards on the market: A Bristle Dartboard or sisal dartboard, Electronic Dartboards, Magnetic Dart Boards, Wooden Dart Boards, Coiled Paper Dart Boards, and Cork Dart Boards

To find the type of dartboard that is best for you, you need to know what they are and why they are called that. This article will take you through the different types of dartboards, the dartboard materials, and what you need to know about them before choosing the best dart board material that fit your needs.

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Key Takeaways

  • Bristle dartboards are best for serious players: Made from sisal, these offer the best playing experience due to their grip and durability.
  • Electronic dartboards are fun but not ideal for pros: They provide features like automatic scoring, but the plastic surface isn’t preferred by professionals.
  • Magnetic dartboards are good for young children: The magnetic tips are safe, but unreliable for serious play.
  • All dartboards have the same scoring areas: Regardless of the type, they all have singles, doubles, triples, and bullseye for scoring points.
  • Learn the colors: Black and white sections are singles, red and green rings are doubles and triples, and the bullseye has an outer green ring (25 points) and a red center dot (50 points).

Before we start…

Are you new to dartboards? Then you should dive into the essentials and lay a solid groundwork with my essential dartboard starters guide. Begin your adventure here and navigate directly to the first chapter of our comprehensive dartboard series.

Anatomy of a Dartboard. What are the parts of a dartboard called?

If you ask dart players what specific parts on a dartboard are named, many will be unable to answer.
Before we go into the many types of dartboards, I believe it is important to first understand what a dartboard is and how the various parts are called. As a quick introduction to dartboard anatomy, I’ll go through some fundamental terms with you so you understand what you’re talking about when you say “dartboard.”

On a dartboard, you’ll find the following components:
Segments: A standard dartboard will have 20 numbered parts on it. These are called segments, or also called beds, and are subsequently subdivided into areas like a single bed, double bed or triple bed.
Spider: The metal used to separate the distinct portions is known as the spider.
Numbers of scoring: These numbers will give a certain value to the segments.

What are the scoring areas on a dartboard?

A dartboard is made up of numbered segments with each of them having different scoring areas that are utilized in different ways depending on the game. Regardless of type of dartboard you choose, the arrangement will be the same.

The Segments of the Dartboard

The board will have 20 segments with score numbers on the outside border, which will be in the following order clockwise, starting at the top:
20 – 1 – 18 – 4 – 13 – 6 – 10 – 15 – 2 – 17 – 3 – 19 – 7 – 16 – 8 – 11 – 14 – 9 – 12 – 5

Scoring Areas of the Dartboard

As explained previously, each segment, or bed, will be separated by the spider into scoring areas. By placing three rings over the complete board, the beds will be split into single, double and triple scoring areas. In the middle you will find the bullseye.

  • Single Ring: The ‘single ring’ zone takes up the majority of the board. It is made up of the most often struck black and white spots on the board during a game. These slots are only worth the value of the number column to which they belong.
  • Double Ring: The outer ring, sometimes known as the ‘double ring,’ will be located just inside the board from the numbers. This is a ring of red and green hit areas for each number that signifies the ‘double’ point value for that number.
  • Triple Ring: The ‘triple ring,’ like the ‘double ring,’ is the board’s center ring, alternating red and green in color. This zone is worth three times the value of the column to which it belongs.
  • Bulls-eye: The circular region in the middle of the board is known as the bulls-eye. This is usually composed of a green outside ring and a red dot in the middle. The green outside ring is worth 25 points, while the red center dot is worth 50.

what are dartboards made of?

The humble dartboard might seem like a simple piece of equipment, but the material it’s made from can significantly impact your throwing experience. Here’s a closer look at the most common dartboard materials, their advantages and disadvantages, and the types of players they’re best suited for:

  • Natural Dartboard Materials:
    • Sisal Fiber: This is the undisputed king of dartboard materials. Derived from the agave plant (a relative of the one used to make tequila!), sisal offers a perfect balance of durability and self-healing properties.
    • Cork: A more budget-friendly option is natural cork.
  • Traditional Dartboard Materials:
    • Wood: While not as common today, traditional dartboards were often crafted from wood.
  • Modern Dartboard Materials:
    • Paper: The cheapest option on the market
    • Plastic: Plastic dartboards are a popular choice for electronic dartboards and outdoor use.
  • Specialty Dartboard Materials:
    • Magnetic Metal: Magnetic dartboards are a safe alternative for homes with children or pets.
MaterialProsConsUse
Sisal FiberDurable, self-healing, good gripMore expensive, requires maintenanceProfessional play, serious dart enthusiasts
CorkLess expensive, good for beginnersNot as durable, doesn’t hold darts wellBudget dartboards, practice boards
WoodBeautiful, unique (traditional)Less forgiving on darts, can splinterNot recommended for regular play
PaperVery inexpensiveLeast durableCasual play, novelty items
PlasticDurable, weatherproof, easy to cleanDifferent feel, can damage dartsElectronic dartboards, outdoor use
Magnetic MetalSafe for homes with children/petsDifferent throwing experience, not for serious playSafe alternative
Table: Dartboard Materials Comparison

This is just a brief description of the different dartboard materials used for dartboard making, for more in-depth information about what dartboards are made of, you can visit my article by clicking the link.

What are the colors on a dartboard?

Dartboards come in a variety of colors and colorways, however the colors of professional competition dartboards used in tournaments are standardized by the World Darts Federation (WDF).
For these professional dartboards, a typical color scheme of black, red, green, and the natural sisal color or white is used.

To establish a clear difference between the parts, the segments are alternately black and white.
The double and triple beds alternate between green and red. To easily distinguish between the beds, an alternate color is employed here as well.
Last but not least, the bullseye. The bullseye’s outside ring is green, while the inner ring, sometimes known as the double bullseye, is red.

What are the different types of dartboards?

A Bristle Dartboard or sisal dartboard

A picture of a Bristle Dartboard or sisal dartboard

As a beginner, I had to put in some effort to understand the difference between bristle and sisal dartboards.
Actually, they’re the same, but they’re not.
Does this seem confusing to you? Then keep reading because it’s a lot easier than you would imagine.

Simply, this type of dartboard is referred to as a bristle dartboard because the material used resembles brushes and catches the tip of the dart. Bristle dartboards may be made out of anything from animal hair to vegetable hair.

A sisal dartboard, on the other hand, is a sort of bristle dartboard that gets its name from the material it’s made of, which is sisal or vegetal hairs. For many, this is the best dart board material. Later on, I’ll go through this in further detail.

In conclusion, a bristle dartboard can be a sisal dartboard, but a sisal dartboard is not always a bristle dartboard.

You’ll need a material with consistent and firm fibers to build a bristle dartboard. People used animal or horsehair while making bristle dartboards in the beginning.
This sort of hair, contrary to popular opinion, is very smooth and has little grip. As a result, a dartboard composed of animal hair will have a lot more trouble gripping the darts.

As a result, a search for a better material with superior qualities to retain the dart was launched, and sisal was discovered.
Sisal is without a doubt the best material for constructing “bristle dartboards”, as evidenced by the fact that the best boards used by professionals are all constructed of sisal fibers.

Sisal is a stiff, long-lasting fiber derived from the Agave Sisalana plant, which is also used to manufacture tequila. Sisal fiber is a highly flexible commodity that is utilized in a variety of businesses throughout the world to create rope, paper, cloth, and, of course, dart boards.

The way sisal fiber is extracted is through a decortication process. The epidermis of the leaves is removed, leaving only the strong fibers present underneath intact. The next step in the process is that the sisal fibers are dried and brushed.

Due to this complete process, the sisal has a grainy texture that offers a lot of grip and is therefore popular in making dartboards.

Then the sisal fibers will be braided into long bundles and then formed into tubes. These tubes have already the shape of a dartboard. After this, they cut these tubes into thin wafers and pressed them flat. To finish the dartboards, the coarse fibers of the sisal sheet must be sanded.
And that is how they make modern bristle dartboards.

Is a Bristle Dartboard what you are looking for? In that case, I recommend following the link, which will guide you to the best place on this website to learn more about this type of dartboard.

Electronic Dartboards

An Electronic Dartboard

Plastic dartboards have become increasingly popular in recent years due to technical developments.

Although this type of dartboard was originally designed for children, it has now evolved into a full-fledged alternative to bristle dartboards and is now also used in competitive tournaments.

Electronic dartboards are made of plastic and, in addition to the pre-programmed scoring variants, have a few advantages over traditional bristle dartboards.

Hundreds of small pores on the surface of an electronic dartboard gather the darts. When the dart becomes trapped on it, an automated scoring system is activated. Furthermore, this type of dartboard will categorize the outcomes into several categories, such as average score, high score, and much more.

The drawback of tiny holes is that they increase the probability of bouncing. Plastic electronics boards are often expensive, and they only allow users to use soft tip darts, which is why they’re also called soft tip dart boards.

These boards take up substantially more room than a standard dartboard, and on top of that, they also need a power source. Keep in mind that this type of dartboard requires regular care and, if damaged or broken, will necessitate expensive repairs.

If the modern flair and technological sophistication of an electronic dartboard have caught your eye, you’ve landed at the right spot. I invite you to click the link below, leading you to the ultimate section on our site dedicated to electronic dartboards. Embark on this enlightening journey to uncover the full spectrum of electronic dartboard wonders today.

Magnetic Dart Boards

A Magnetic Dart Board with magnetic darts

A magnetic dartboard is A great alternative if you want to play safely. Magnetic darts with flat magnetic tips on the end are used on these boards.

When tossed, they are meant to stick on the board. However, in practice, they sometimes stick and sometimes don’t. These dartboards may be appropriate for younger children beginning to play darts for the first time, but serious players, or anybody aspiring to be a serious player, should avoid them at all costs. I Also recommend them to women who want to play darts when pregnant.

A big disadvantage to this type of boards is that when the dart hits the metal board, it makes a tremendous amount of noise.

If you want to learn more, you can read my in-depth article about magnetic dartboards and discover all the important information you need to know. Just give it a chance, maybe this is the best solution for your situation.

Wooden Dart Boards

A Wooden Dart Board

These dartboards are the earliest ones with which the dart game began. The majority of these dartboards are built of elm, but other types of wood were employed to a lesser extent.

This type of dartboard is becoming less common as bristles and electronic dartboards gain favor.
As a result, compared to other boards, maintenance is far more complex.

When the darts contact the board, they will create little holes due to the wood. After playing a game, you may partially heal these holes by soaking the hardwood board in the water. The wood will swell as a result of the water, and the holes will be squashed. Wooden dartboards, on the other hand, will likely stink as a result of this procedure, which is a major disadvantage.

Learn more about wooden dartboards in my detailed guide. Although wooden dartboards are hardly used anymore, it can be important to understand them as they are the ancestors of today’s dartboards.

Coiled Paper Dart Boards

Coiled Paper Dart Board

Coiled paper is another material that is used to make dartboards all over the world. Wrapping sheets of paper together to form the striking surface of the board produces this sort of material. Coiled paper dartboards are also quite affordable.

On contact, the thrown arrow is supposed to fall between layers of paper, but even a slight burr on the tip of an arrow can grab and shred the paper substance, inflicting irreversible damage.

It will leave a hole on the board and that hole will be permanent. Coiled paper dartboards are not advised for serious play since they are not durable.

Discover all the facts and benefits that coiled paper dartboards have to offer you in this article where I go into more detail about this type of dartboards.

Cork Dart Boards

an expample of a Cork Dart Board

The cork dartboard is the last type of dartboard on our list. Dartboards made out of cork are no longer as popular as they once were. This is most likely owing to the fact that, in comparison to other types of dartboards, they wear out rather rapidly.

These boards are not advised for regular use but are OK for the occasional player.

Cork dartboards are frequently confused with bristles due to their similar look. This is a typical beginner’s error, so read the description carefully before purchasing a dartboard.

Keep in mind that the American dartboard’s bullseye is known as the cork, which is why many people believe this prevalent fallacy.

A cork dartboard might be something for you. Dig deeper into the knowledge about this type of dartboards and get to know them inside and out.

Which types of dartboard have the least chance of bouncing?

To determine which sort of dartboard has the lowest chance of bouncing, search for the dartboard material that provides the most grip.

The bristle or sisal dartboard is the sort of dartboard with the least probability of bouncing. This is owing to the sisal strands’ gritty texture, which provides excellent grip.
This is also why professional dart competitions utilize this particular dartboard.

So, if you need to choose between these different types of dartboards, A bristle dartboard is considered the best dartboard to get started with darts. If you have no idea where to start for searching the best dartboard for you, check out my dartboard buying guides here.

Conclusion

In conclusion, choosing the right dartboard is crucial for beginners who want to enjoy the game of darts to the fullest. Understanding the different types of dartboards and dartboard materials available can help simplify the selection process.

The article highlighted the main types of dartboards, including bristle or sisal dartboards, electronic dartboards, magnetic dartboards, and cork dartboards.

Bristle or sisal dartboards are the most popular choice among professionals due to their durability and excellent dart retention. These boards are made from sisal fibers, providing a grainy texture that offers optimal grip for accurate throwing.

Electronic dartboards, on the other hand, have gained popularity with their advanced features, automated scoring systems, and various game modes. They are made of plastic and are suitable for both recreational play and competitive tournaments. However, they require regular care and maintenance to ensure theirlongevity.

Magnetic dartboards, although primarily designed for children, are not recommended for serious players. The use of flat magnetic-tipped darts on these boards can be unreliable and inconsistent, making them unsuitable for competitive play.

Cork dartboards, while resembling bristle boards in appearance, have limited durability and wear out quickly. They are more suitable for occasional players rather than regular use.

Understanding the scoring areas and colors on a dartboard is also essential. The single ring represents the majority of the board, with each slot corresponding to the value of the number it belongs to.

The triple ring, located in the center, carries three times the value of the column it belongs to, while the bulls-eye consists of a green outer ring worth 25 points and a red center dot worth 50 points.

Ultimately, the choice of a dartboard depends on personal preferences, skill level, and intended use. Whether you opt for a traditional bristle dartboard, an advanced electronic dartboard, or any other type, the key is to find the one that suits your playing style and offers an enjoyable darts experience. Happy throwing!

Besides dartboards, you also need other essential dart equipment to play your favorite game, such as darts, a dart mat, or lighting. If you want to get a better overview of all these things, you can follow the link that takes you to the main page of this category. The ideal starting point, therefore, as an introduction to all the necessities for playing darts.

Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT IS A QUADRO DARTBOARD?

A Quadro dartboard is a type of dartboard with four separate target areas, each with its own scoring zones.

HOW DO I CHOOSE A DARTBOARD?

Choose a dartboard based on the material, size, and wiring system that suits your playing style and skill level.

WHAT IS A YORKSHIRE DARTBOARD?

The Yorkshire Dartboard is an earlier version of the standard London or “Clock” dartboard. Unlike the latter, it doesn’t have a treble bed or an outer bullseye.

WHAT IS A LINCOLN DARTBOARD?

The Lincoln-style dartboard has a unique layout. It lacks the 25-point surround around the bullseye and does not feature trebles as in the standard layout you’re familiar with.

WHAT DO THE COLORS MEAN ON A DARTBOARD?

The colors on a dartboard indicate different scoring zones, such as the red and green areas representing double and triple scores.

WHAT ARE THE PARTS OF A DARTBOARD CALLED

The parts of a dartboard are: Segments, Beds, spider, and the numbers of scoring.