Know Your Waffle Tips- Physical PropertiesWith so many pointless and confusing brand names for these darts I felt it was time to break it down simply and obviously into the three basic tip designs, regardless of seller or Youtuber names for them.
Waffle darts are currently very cheap and offer the mass distribution if solid tips like FVJ with more forgiving tip compounds.
There is no voodoo about what makes a good superstock dart, it's all in the distribution of the mass. Air your centre of mass (CM) is ahead of your centre of pressure (CP,) your dart flies where you aimed it, imagining zero wind, if your CM is BEHIND the CP then it starts to gimbal or whirlybird.
In simple terms, the harder you shoot your dart, the more you want the nass in the tip and the heavier that tip should be. Too heavy however and your trajectory gets very curved and you get drop. Thus a balance is required.
Let's start with the tip shapes. There are three basic types, Offset, Stacked and X-tip (Honeycomb.)
Here is "Offset"-
Common darts with this tip are Knex. The tip has some compressability as the vertical ribs are offset, allowing it to crumple and absorb some energy.
Seen on the scales Offset tips are around 0.86g
Sample dart weight- 1.08g from sample of 10.
Here clearly showing the rib lining through the layers top to bottom. This adds tip mass and moves the CP forward, at the expense of compressibility in the tip on impact.
On the scales they come in at 0.98g. This gives an all in mass of 1.22g from a sample of 20.
Here you can see the clear X tip shape, with voids between the ribs and an almost completely hollow point, with a long stem. This means overall mass distribution may be slightly further back than stacked, but with the dense, flat top, the stem length may be balanced out. This allows for good compression on impact.
On the scales at 1.0g the heaviest tip overall. All up mass is 1.3g from a sample of 20.
That gives you an idea of the physical properties, Koosh are a 1g dart with a tip weight of around 0.75g which was previously considered a good weight distribution for superstock. With 120-130fps now being the norm and given the issues caused by Koosh's wide tip and bristled finish for some users, new superstock darts were well overdue.
Thunderkrunk, in his excellent dart analysis, concluded that for most regular Nerf a tip/foam mass concentration of 76% or higher gave best results. All of these darts are well over that, as foam is typically about 0.3g in full length.
Which one is best? That will be down to how hard you are shooting and what you are shooting it from. Heavier darts DO hurt velocity, so won't get to the target as fast, they will also have more drop in the trajectory. They will go straighter. Northwind is going to do some "precision" testing so I will leave a practical demonstration to him, as I believe that repeatable "accuracy" testing is outside the realms of practicality for most players.
Personally I am fully sold on X-Tips, despite their higher KE. The difference at 100fps indoors between them and yellow Koosh was significant, to the point where anyone not using them was being tagged straight out in any engagement beyond 20ft.