Choose Your Extra: Point Changer
By Joe Reid 18/03/2022
As I've alluded to in many of my past reviews, the frequency of point-changing in both amateur and professional darts has increased exponentially. In recent years, players such as Rob Cross and Jonny Clayton have switched out their points for alternatives, with varying levels of grip and/or length.
As a collector of player-replica darts, I often find the need to replace the supplied silver or black points to stay authentic to what the player in question actually uses. For this, I needed a repointing tool, and so I invested in the cheapest I could find - a Designa Re-Pointer, from Darts Corner.
After a year of struggling, and a few damaged points, I decided to replace it with a newer version. My need for a new Repointing Tool coincided nicely with the Harrows 2021 Launch back in November last year, and so for around £40.00, I decided to invest in the newly released 'Harrows Easy Re-Pointer', to see if it lived up to its name.
Open the Box
The re-pointer arrives in a simple cardboard box, keeping the contents secure and compact. Inside the box is the re-pointer itself, a small drawstring pouch to store it in, and two long allen-keys for tightening and loosening the various components. No assembly is required, meaning right out of the box you can get started replacing the points in your darts.
- Colour: Black
- Length (Fully Screwed-In): 16.5cm
- Length (Fully Extended): 23.5cm
- Width: 4.5cm
- Depth 1cm
- Depth (Including Screws): 1.5cm
- Allen-key Length (Large): 14.5cm
- Allen-key Length (Small): 11.2cm
- Pouch Length: 20cm
- Pouch Width: 8cm
The re-pointer itself is very easy to use, yet as with all repointers, will require some brute force at times. The end of the dart is screwed in place with the point tightened into the point clamp below, locked in using the thinner of the two allen-keys. The larger of the two allen-keys is then used to pull the barrel upwards by turning the large bolt running through the centre. The point is then removed by force from the barrel, held in place by a point clamp at the bottom. The point can then be replaced, reversing the motion of the larger allen-key in order to force the new point into the barrel.
This process, while sometimes difficult, proved to be far easier than using my old re-pointer. The larger allen-key was easier to grasp, with the hexagonal shape kinder to my hands, reducing the strain felt on my palms and fingers. The device itself felt sturdy, with little strain felt on the various parts, besides that of which I was applying substantial force - even then, it did not feel like for one second, the device would buckle.
The point clamp held the points in place well, without causing any damage whatsoever. One issue I had with my previous re-pointer was that the point clamp would occasionally damage the points, occasionally removing chunks of coating, and in one instance, bending a point completely out of shape to the extent that it was unusable.
I did, however, encounter a few issues using the re-pointer. Firstly, the thread for screwing into the barrel was slightly off centre, meaning I couldn't fully screw it in without having the point off-centre, risking the chances of the point bowing under the pressure. By leaving the barrel slightly away from the end of the thread, I was able to set it so the point could be safely removed, and replaced.
Another second issue I discovered was that the point clamp screws to hold the point clamp into place seemed to wear away rather quickly. I'm now nearly six months into using this, and I feel the screws may only have another month or so of life left in them. As of yet, Harrows do not offer a replacement part package - something I feel let down by. I had a similar issue with my old Designa Re-Pointer, and was able to quickly order replacement parts for under £4.00, to increase the longevity of the system.
For around £40.00 (from various retailers - prices may differ), I truly believe the 'Harrows Easy Re-Pointer' is the best for value. While other alternatives, such as the 'Bulls Professional Repointing Machine', or the 'Unicorn Unitool', may present an easier re-pointing experience, for the price, the 'Harrows Easy Re-Pointer' really cannot be beaten.
Is it perfect? Absolutely not. Unfortunately, re-pointing is a messy game - your hands will hurt, there will be grease, there will be times a point may prove too stubborn for just brute force.
However, a re-pointer is a must have for any and all darts players, and the 'Harrows Easy Re-Pointer' is a great start. It is, and will continue to be, a well used component in my day-to-day darting life!