It can say without a doubt, at least in my opinion (and a very strong one on this issue), that the Maui Sails carbon booms are a true benchmark in the market. However, I have to admit that I was a commited Gulftech boom person for many years (starting in 1992, and I'm still using one today), but the current Maximum Formula boom is something I'm not familiar with. Needless to say, I'm hearing over the years that many have upgraded Gulftech front ends to the Streamline front end design.
If you really check the details of the Maui Sails carbon booms, the facts speak for themselves. OK, the grip has recently been criticized as being a bit too soft, but from what I understand, the grip material had been modified more recently. Can't say whether the grip material on my boom is the older or newer material, we're really talking about an extremely minor detail. Grip can be easily retrofited.
Other than being a complete monoque boom design (an arm component matched with an extension/rear end component), the front end is unquestionably the best out there. We're not talking any aluminum stuff here that's hard to adjust between the use of different masts, but a design that offers a superior bearing surface area and also easily adjusts to any mast virtually immediately. Really, a better engineering design. No slippage, and the tension needed to guarantee that result is very minimal overall. With all the worry about formula mast integrity, a low tension connection is a notable feature.
Even for those out there that have other booms (HPL, Gulftech or NP), the simple retrofit of the Maui Sails front end produces an incredible outcome. I updated my 2004 HPL, and the result was simply outstanding. I always hated the HPL front end because of its terrible lack of firm contact, and particularly the flexibility it introduced, and it was so simple to upgrade to something infinitely better.
Do yourself a favor and consider the Maui Sails carbon booms. I'm not sponsered by Maui Sails, but just an enthusiastic customer that wants the best in booms. For me, booms have always been the weak link in my experience. I don't know what it is, but I can just destroy booms. I'm not a big guy by any means, but no component in windsurfing has been more susceptable to failure.
I'm confident that I'm on the prime path. Did you know that boogie was the principle designer of the Maui Sail carbon booms?
Last edited by steveC; 21st February 2008 at 11:11 AM.