Often we get requests on what is the best kind of equipment to have in your establishment. While a lot of bar owners/managers do want to save money and not get the most expensive board on the market, often they will choose the most cost-efficient board or the smallest chalk or dry erase scoreboard. We can tell you from experience this is not always the way to go, as these boards are primarily poorly made and not meant for the wear and tear of normal bar activities and league play, and will only last a fraction of the time a good quality board will. What we recommend is to have two sets of boards. One set that regular patrons can throw on and another set of higher quality boards that you use only for league play. Now, this might be slightly pricey in the beginning, but a quality board used just for league play will last 4-6 sessions (3years). Below we have listed our top choices for league play boards and scoreboards. Also if you have any questions about your bars set up, we would be glad to help you out. You can request our Playing Conditions rep to visit your bar, and he can give you additional recommendations. Just contact us at:
Winmau Blade 5:
The Winmau Blade 5 is the standard in high-quality dartboards. This is the most common board you can find in most major tournaments and is a staple free board that will last a long time. It ranges from sales on Amazon from $58 -$64 on most dart accessory websites. Also, Don't forget our friends at F&C Dart Supply. All purchases made with bar checks will get a percentage off of the total bill.
Bandit from Puma/Shot Darts:
Bandit from Puma/Shot Darts:
The Bandit dartboard is a high-quality dartboard that sells online at A-Z darts for $64. This board is a staple free and is very durable and offers a great shelf life for league play.
The Unicorn Eclipse HD2:
This board is the top of the line board if money is not an object. This is the board used by the PDC and many professional players around the world. Very high-quality board with a long shelf life if used only for league play. The HD board is excellent if your bars lighting quality is not that great and the segments do pop out at you. This board is also a staple free board and ranges from $80 - $85 on A-Z Darts and Amazon.com.
The Unicorn Eclipse Pro:
This may be THE best option out there for bars in need of a good quality board and looking to save some money. This board sells on Amazon for $40. It is a high-quality board that in the past was the leader and used by the PDC for all major televised events.
The Chalk scoreboard by Viper sells on Amazon for $17.
While the purists of the game love chalk there is a trade-off on chalk Vs. Dry erase. Chalkboards if not maintained correctly or if certain chalks are used can become scratched and worn out to the point they will not hold the chalk to the board. It is imperative that if you go with this solution to not use hard chalk or the "cheapest" chalk you can find. Also to take into consideration is the powder buildup around your boards if the area is not cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. Also, the chalk holder on these are not very big so having a bigger tray mounted underneath the chalkboard would be better, but not mandatory. Even if you go with this solution, please remember to get the Large chalkboard as they do come in small and medium as well. While you can order this online F&C Dart supply does carry this kind of board, and we recommend that you go through them to get it.
Dry erase is quickly becoming the go-to for a lot of bars in our league and others. Compared to chalkboards dry erase boards require very little maintenance and less cleanup. Anything written down is typically very visible from the oche. There is no specific dry erase marker to use, so this is one of those occasions that you can be frugal. The downside of this is if you are not stocked with dry erase markers, and often most bar patrons who are not league players will leave the caps off, which will dry the marker out. Buying markers in bulk, preferably darker colors (black/red/green/blue), and keeping your dry erase erasers clean is key to utilizing this kind of board. Much like the chalkboard the marker holder is tiny so having another receptacle to store your marker would be better, but again not mandatory. Also if you go with this solution, please remember to get the large chalkboard as they do come in small and medium as well. While you can order this online, F&C Dart supply does carry this kind of board, so we recommend that you go through them to get it.