Choose Your Weapons: Soots you, sir

By Joe Reid 02/11/2021

Back in August, I was kindly sent a selection of Mission's latest products to work with, in preparation for their product launch. A stand out for me was the new Alan Soutar darts, which were released alongside the Brett Claydon and Martin Lukeman darts, adding to Mission's ever-expanding range of player-branded products.

The darts have already been covered in depth by many of my fellow product analysts but I had decided that, for my review, I'd contact Alan himself, to gain an in-depth understanding, not only on the darts themselves, but the thought process behind them, and how the design came to reality.

 

Breakdown and Specifications

Steel Tip - 22g*  
  • Length: 45.80mm
  • Width: 6.6mm
  • Tungsten Percentage: 90%
  • Points: Mission Glide Black 32mm
  • Stems: Mission Grip Lock Short
  • Flights: Mission Alan Soutar No. 2
  • Price: £39.95

* Used in this review.

 

 

Open The Box:

The darts arrive in a simple cardboard package, housing a matte black insert, which secures the darts and set up during delivery. With the stems already assembled and the flights just behind, you can take the darts from the box to the oche in seconds! The darts come supplied with Alan's own flights, but in the No. 2 shape, as opposed to the pear-shaped flights he uses in competitive action. 

Soots' View: 

When quizzed on the setup he uses, Alan said "the reason for the short stems with pear flights is the size. I want the combination as small as possible to eliminate deflections and I feel with that setup I can push past blocker darts". While Alan shortened the rear of his setup as much as possible, he made the decision to extend the dart at the point, opting for a set of 38mm MK2 CD points, as opposed to the 32mm black coated points supplied by Mission. "CD points just give me a slight grip on my pinky finger", Alan informed me, "to help release the dart at the correct moment". In addition to this, as the barrels are centrally weighted, the setup allows Alan to balance out the dart as he wishes, ensuring the darts lie in the board at an angle that allows him to maximise his scoring potential. 

 

 

The barrel itself draws inspiration from Alan's old darts - a set of old Steve Beaton's! The darts feature five vibrant painted ringed grip sections, with three micro grip sections placed in between the four-ringed grip sections nearest the point. While offering a relatively low level of grip due to the thinner cuts, Alan found the grip more than sufficient, informing me that "The micro grip once worn in, is very minimal but enough there for some purchase to help me propel the darts correctly". The micro grip sections are specifically placed along the barrel, with Alan stating that "it was based on hours of throwing and analysis down at Mission HQ with Steve Reed based on where my fingers are on the dart". The rear of the dart, excluding the rear painted rings, has been kept smooth per Alan's request.

"I'm a front/middle gripper so the smooth tapered rear of the dart is kept relatively clear and less busy".
 

One area of potential concern I found with the darts was the lack of taper at the nose of the dart. At 6.60mm, the nose of the dart is the barrel's thickest point, and yet the taper has been kept to a minimum. While Alan himself rectified this issue by using longer points in his own setup, I was interested to know the thought process behind this. "The tapered nose was added to the design by the experts at Mission [who had] explained this was the best option for me". Alan went on to further explain that:

 "I throw my darts with some force and once they are thrown, they stay thrown so I don't have a problem with unwanted deflections really".

https://www.dartscorner.co.uk/search/alan-soutar

 

I was interested to know if Alan had since had any thoughts on a potential future dart, based on his own experience so far using his own Mission signature barrels. "I'm always open to change and experimenting", he said, "I love the dart at the moment, but as technology advances and new things become available who knows. I would like to see a set of my darts done in black onyx coating with the vibrant Blue and White ring cuts.

[I] think they would throw the same but look a million dollars. Maybe a special edition once I've earned a reason to launch them" - watch this space, you heard it here first!
 

A huge thank you to Mission Darts and to Alan Soutar for agreeing to the interview! If you'd like to purchase Alan's darts, or anything else from the ever-expanding Mission range, head over to Darts Corner!

-----ENDS-----
@JoeReid180
https://joereiddartsreviews.weebly.com 

Purchase and more details:

https://www.dartscorner.co.uk/search/alan-soutar 

Additional editions and specifications:

Steel Tip - 24g 

  • Length: 45.8mm
  • Width: 6.75mm
  • Tungsten Percentage: 90%
  • Points: Mission Glide Black 32mm
  • Stems: Mission Grip Lock Short
  • Flights: Mission Alan Soutar No. 2
  • Price: £39.95
 

Steel Tip - 26g

  • Length: 45.80mm
  • Width: 7.15mm
  • Tungsten Percentage: 90%
  • Points: Mission Glide Black 32mm
  • Stems: Mission Grip Lock Short
  • Flights: Mission Alan Soutar No. 2
  • Price: £39.95
  •  

Steel Tip - 28g

  • Length: 45.80mm
  • Width: 7.45mm
  • Tungsten Percentage: 90%
  • Points: Mission Glide Black 32mm
  • Stems: Mission Grip Lock Short
  • Flights: Mission Alan Soutar No. 2
  • Price: £39.95
 

Soft Tip - 22g 

  • Length: 45.80mm
  • Width: 6.60mm
  • Tungsten Percentage: 90%
  • Points: Mission Titan Pro Black
  • Stems: Mission Grip Lock Short
  • Flights: Mission Alan Soutar No. 2
  • Price: £39.95
-----ENDS-----

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