Ozones are a useful piece of darts equipment and are commonly sold in darts kit multipacks, which also include sets of flights and stems. They are quickly and easily applied, which allows a player to secure and stabilise his darts during throws, helping him increase his accuracy and scoring. Ozones can be bought in small packs online, through mail order or in specialist darts or pub recreation stores.
Ozones are small, cylindrical rings, like washers, that are used to shore up unstable, slightly cracked or loose dart stems. Ozones are known by a number of names, including ozone locking rings, O-rings, shaft lock systems and slot lock rings. Ozones are most commonly made of firm rubber, while some are also made of plastic or thin, malleable metal.
Ozones can be used by players at any stage, even when using brand new stems. They work by tightening the prongs at the end of the stem in which the flights are held, thus allowing darts to stay on course and accurate. Using ozones, however, increases the likelihood of bounce outs from the board, so Nicedarts.com advises that you only use them if you find they do not cause many bounce outs. Ozones are most commonly used when there is damage to a stem -- often this occurs when darts bounce out of the board or strike one another in the board. Apply an ozone to your dart if any of the prongs of the stem have become loose or cracked.
All ozones are applied in a simple fashion. First, screw the stem into the barrel tightly so it cannot shake or move around. Then, apply the ozone over the flight end of the stem until it is around the base of the stem's four prongs, holding them together tightly -- make sure the ozone is symmetrical and applied evenly. Finally, carefully slide the flight into the stem, applying the necessary force to open the prongs slightly.
Although ozones are a useful aid and will mean that, in the long-term, you use fewer stems overall, sometimes they may adversely affect your game, such as by causing more bounce outs or forcing you to use old and tired stems that are not reliable. If you find that you are having more bounce outs than normal or that your stems are heavily cracked or broken, you should consider replacing the stems rather than applying ozones.