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Is a carbon boom worth it?
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steve74



Joined: 22 May 2010
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 11:43 am    Post subject: Is a carbon boom worth it? Reply with quote

I need a new boom and looking at the Chinook carbon and alloy models. Carbon is 4.75 lbs, alloy is 6 lbs, price difference is significant. Largest sail I'll use with this boom is a 5.8.

I have a hard time seeing 1.25 lbs and increase stiffness worth the cost. If this was for a larger sail, I can see the benefits but for a smaller sail range, not so much.

Is it really worth it?
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boardsurfr



Joined: 23 Aug 2001
Posts: 602

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes.
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KevinDo



Joined: 02 Jul 2012
Posts: 423
Location: Cabrillo Inside

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Is a carbon boom worth it? Reply with quote

steve74 wrote:
I need a new boom and looking at the Chinook carbon and alloy models. Carbon is 4.75 lbs, alloy is 6 lbs, price difference is significant. Largest sail I'll use with this boom is a 5.8.

I have a hard time seeing 1.25 lbs and increase stiffness worth the cost. If this was for a larger sail, I can see the benefits but for a smaller sail range, not so much.

Is it really worth it?


I had a Chinook alloy Pro1 that I used with my 5.4 sail. Didn't think carbon would make a big difference but decided to try it and never went back to alloy for small sails since!
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Scharlack



Joined: 26 Oct 1991
Posts: 32

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Definitely worth it, and cheaper in the long run, as carbon reliably lasts much longer than aluminum.
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benspikey



Joined: 02 Aug 2008
Posts: 130

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depends.. What size sails do you use most often? For smaller sails people often use pro-alloy with very little extension and still maintain rigidity. For larger sails 6.0+ a carbon boom will give you less flex and better response. Need to weigh the cost of breaking a boom vs. rescue vs. expense vs. performance. If you can afford carbon by all means buy carbon booms. If you are on a budget pro-alloy work just fine. If your learning wave-sailing then breaking a pro-alloy is a lot cheaper than breaking a carbon.. If you do long distance sailing than the added strength of carbon might be something to consider.
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Sailboarder



Joined: 10 Apr 2011
Posts: 479

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An expert sailor I know broke something in his shoulder while landing on his carbon boom. He now sticks to flatwater with his carbon booms. I wonder if he's the only one doing that?
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whitevan01



Joined: 29 Jun 2007
Posts: 510

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, absolutely.
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rigitrite



Joined: 19 Sep 2007
Posts: 324
Location: Kansas City

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"....is it really worth it."

NO

_________________
Kansas City
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 6031

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 2:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You need to ask yourself the question whether you have a record of breaking aluminum booms. I broke every aluminum boom I've ever owned in a relatively short period of time. In the last year I used aluminum booms (1991), I broke 6 of them. I switched to Gulftech carbon booms, but unfortunately, I found that they used front ends that had aluminum tubing inside. As a result, I broke nearly every one of them too, but I got more time out of them.

Overall, in my view, aluminum shouldn't be used for booms or any of their components. That said, some folks get years of use out of aluminum booms. How they do it is a mystery to me. Maybe it's because they sail predominantly fresh water sites. Saltwater definitely corrodes aluminum over time, so that should be kept in mind. Also, folks that are heavyweights should definitely avoid aluminum, but sometimes they can have trouble with carbon too. Just for the record, I'm not a heavyweight. I just have this uncanny ability to break booms.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14624

PostPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some other factors:
If you're BAFing on flat water, the board is holding the rig up so weight is not a big deal. OTOH, if you maneuver a lot, the lower inertia of a lighter boom is quite noticeable.

If you're not a serious drag racer, the slight top speed advantage in big gusts afforded by a stiffer boom is not a big deal.

If you have to pump a lot, stiffer mast and boom help. Rigging bigger, though, is cheaper.

If the extra $500 deprives your family of something important, it's not worth it. If it just means buying cheaper sneakers, it's a good lesson for them.

If you sail in salt water, you should disassemble, rinse, and dry a metal boom so it doesn't corrode from the inside. Carbon doesn't care.

I can afford carbons (no kids), but refused to pay full price for the short ones where the advantage is minimal. I kept my eyes open for great deals, found them, and went carbon all the way only when the price differences dropped to a large bag of peanuts. I don't mind buying used booms for sails I seldom need.
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