Dart Flights

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Feathered Dart Flights

Wooden DartsThe dart flight has changed greatly over the past hundred years. Until the end of the nineteenth century the majority darts thrown in the UK were imported from France. These wooden darts had three or four turkey feathers that formed the dart flight. The wood dart was weighted with lead to give the dart some balance and a needle was used as point.

Later versions of the feather flight saw the introduction of the wooden spigot which was forced into a brass dart barrel. This arrangement was unsatisfactory as the spigot was subject to shrink and swell in different atmospheric conditions.

Unicorn Feather Flights with Plastic AdaptorIn 1949 Unicorn Dart Company invented an adaptor for the wooden spigot. The screw threaded plastic adaptor was not affected by changes atmospheric conditions and was always a perfect fit for the dart barrel. The wooden spigot was force-fitted into the back of the adaptor and this carried the feather wings.
A set of Unicorn Feathered Flights can be seen here on the right.

Plastic Flight & Stem

Plastic Flight & Stem DartsLater again we would see the emergence of the full plastic flight and stem. This construction is still used and produced today although most players prefer to use separate flights and stems.



The Paper Dart Flight

Although the first dart flights were made from feathers it wasn’t until 1898 when an American inventor Nathern P. McKenney patented the world's fist paper flight. Although darts was not a popular American pub game until the mid-twenties, McKenney is reported to have stated he had patented the flight as an improvement to a toy dart target game.

Based on McKenney's Original Paper Dart Flight Design


Nathern P. McKennry Paper Darts Flights

Why don't you have a go making your own Paper Dart Flights?

If you would like to make some retro flights the best material I found to use is a square Post-It-Note. Post-It-Notes are available in a large range of colours and they are the idea size to make a dart flight. The only change I would make to the above is to trim the side so that the flight looks like a conventional dart flight. If you have an old dart flight, use this as a template.


  • First step is to make all the folds in the paper

  • Second fold the paper into the flight shape as above.

  • Thirdly use an old dart flight as a template, and draw around it so the paper flight takes on a modern day look.

  • Fourthly cut around the marking to form the flight after you have folded the paper into the flight shape.

  • Lastly, lightly glue the flight together.

Here are a set that I made using Post-It-Notes, it is very quick and easy to do, and they also work very well!


Paper Darts Flights, click for a larger image

Paper Darts Flights, click for a larger image

Paper dart flights made from modern day Post-It-Note paper.
Click on the images to see a larger illustration.

Paper flights became commercially available in the 1930’s, these flights came pre-gummed similar to an envelope adhesive. You still had to fold them the same way as McKenney’s patent but the flight design was different in shape.

1930's Paper Dart Flight

1930's Paper Flight

Further details regarding the originality of the paper flight can be found on Patrick Chaplin’s (Darts Historian) web site.

Wooden darts with feather flights are still available today although distributors are few and far between. A good selection of these can be found at DiscountDarts.com

And Now to the modern day...

David King personal flights made by Harrow'sTo the left are my personal flights made for me by Harrows.

Flights can be very personal and I have designed my own set. The flights are unusual as they are based on the oldest ‘King’s’ coat of arm’s I could find. The Lion with the red tongue on a black background. The three pointed white argent and the Cross of St George for England. I don't want go into any more about heraldry as this is a darts site but there are details below about personalised flights.

Shapes & Styles

Today there are many different shapes and styles of flights on the market. There are 1,000’s of different designs, styles to choose from. The materials used to construct have also changed, Plastic polymers, nylon, foil & rip-stop nylon to name just a few. Here are a few examples of the many shapes and styles.


Selection of dart flights available from Harrow's

Selection of dart flights available from Harrows

Like shafts, flights are a personal preference. The material used to make the flights, its shape and size will all make the dart perform differently. The traditional shapes are the Kite and Pear but recently the slim as become popular. Slim flights will help with tight grouping but they are not to everyone’s preference.

Dart flights made by Harrow's

You may find different shaped flights perform better with different weight darts. But generally large flights can make the dart stall and if you are a lobber of the dart then a large flight may be best suited to your throw. Slim flights require a much harder straight throw as they give less support in flight than larger flights. When first finding a suitable flight, buy several different types and see which style suits your style of throw best.

Many manufactures and suppliers now offer personalisation of flights. If you are a regular player or member of a team or just want to advertise your pub, club, team then contact the major suppliers for a price you will find several suppliers listed on the links page of this site that can do this for you. Below are a few flight designs Harrows have produced for company advertising

.Sample of of items Harrows have produced. They are not for sale contact Harrow's via this website

The products shown above are examples of items Harrows have produced for promotions. They are not for general sale and are for illustration purposes only. If you would like to buy promotional darts, dartboards or flights contact Harrows Darts Technology direct or follow the link here www.harrows-darts.com

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