written by Lance Kent
Note: Still looking for a picture of one, when I get one it will be posted..
The concept behind the design of the SpringShaft is to allow the shaft to bend upon impact from another incoming dart, allowing tighter groupings. The shaft is comprised of 3 parts: an aluminum base, a spring, and an aluminum top. The base screws into the barrel as with any other shaft. The top of the shaft will accommodate any conventional flight. The spring is wrapped around the base and is soldered inside of the top part.
When I first threw with these shafts, my major concern was the feel of the shaft. I thought that when I threw, the spring would not remain straight. The force of the throw would bend the spring causing the dart not to fly true. To my surprise, this was not the case. I did not feel any bending of the shaft or looseness.
Another possible benefit of these shafts is when the dart bounces out of the board. The shaft will give and bend, but will become straight, unlike aluminum or nylon shafts that have a tendency to become misshapen.
However, after 5 minutes (approximately 60 to 70 darts) of throwing, I completely destroyed 2 shafts by them landing on a wooden floor after the dart bounced out from the board. The first shaft the top came completely off the spring. Upon inspection, it looks like the top of the shaft was soldered to the spring. The top would not remain attached to the spring after that. The second shaft became 'de-sprung'. It was real obvious that the spring was damaged beyond repair. Once the spring is damaged, it is almost impossible and impractical to try and straighten out the spring.
I currently throw with a set of 24 gram Meteorite darts that have been converted to use hammer head points. I did notice a huge increase in the number of bounce outs. It seems that the springiness of the shaft counteracted and neutralized the actions of the hammer head points. I tried these shafts with fixed point darts and did not notice an increase in bounce outs.
Recommendation: If you throw a fixed point dart and are capable of throwing somewhat consistent groupings, and have the cash to constantly replace these shafts, then these may be for you. In my case, however, I will not be using these shafts again.
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