(Updated 10/31/2021) The GoFoil mast you choose can dramatically affect how you ride and your ability to progress. Currently, the GoFoil platform has eight different options for you to select when putting together your perfect foil rig. We are going to introduce them in order of height. GoFoil has two different mast categories; plate and tuttle. The plate mast comes in 26.5", 29.5" 32.5", 36.5" and 40". The tuttle mast options are 29.5", 36.5 and 40"
General Things To Remember When Looking At Different Masts
Length: Shorter masts are more comfortable to learn on. More extended options aid experienced riders with increased time to make corrections, help in pumping, and improve the ride in choppy conditions.
Board Mount Options: There are two systems for mounting foil boards, a tuttle box or a track mount system. The tuttle box is a box that installs through the foil board. The tuttle head mast is designed to slide inside and then be secured by two bolts through the top side of the board.
The track mount system is made up of two long boxes mounted 90mm apart, 45mm to the left and right of the center of the board. The boxes vary in length from 10" to as long as 15". Track mount systems are designed to be used with plate foils, and the plate system installs on the tracks with four specialized track nuts. The track nuts allow the plate system to slide forward and backward, to adjust the foil mount position on the board.
You want to make sure you know which system your board has so that you can get the correct mast for it.
Tuttle To Plate adapters: We outline different plate adapters in another post but wanted to add one quick note regarding mast selection. The best way to ensure you can use your foil on any board is to purchase a tuttle head mast with the optional tuttle to plate adapter. With this combo, your setup will work on almost any traditional foil board made today, whether it's a tuttle box or a track mount.
When using a plate adapter, remember that the mast length will be longer with the adapter installed. The GoFoil Plate adapter, for instance, increases your mast height by an additional 2.75". You can use this to make your 29.5", 36.5 & 40" tuttle mast taller if the added length is your goal.
Strength: The GoFoil Mast/Fuselage is all one piece and is one of the most robust systems out there. GoFoil is adamant about eliminating the possibility of a mast fuselage connection failure. The advantages of one-piece construction are increased stiffness, superior strength, no weak points of connections, and extreme reduction of reliance on metal parts and built with 100% pre-preg carbon fiber. Pre-preg is when carbon fiber is directly impregnated with epoxy resin, resulting in a perfect ratio for the highest quality process. GoFoil designs with simplicity in mind, Plug, and Play. The front and back foils attach to the fuselage with one screw, simple.
Available Mast Options:
26.5"Mast (Plate Only): This option is 26.5" from the board's base to the fuselage and is the shortest option GoFoil has. The 26.5" mast is the length that many beginner foilers will choose as they start their foiling journey. It's also a great option if you're riding in shallower areas or where low tides can be an issue.
29.5" Mast: The 29.5" mast comes with a plate mount or tuttle head. The length from the top of the mast plate to the fuselage is, as you would imagine, 29.5". This mast is 3" longer than the 26.5", and the height difference will cause it to perform a little differently on the water in a few ways. For beginners, starting with a more extended option will make your board ride higher off the water and ultimately less stable. As your board gets higher above the surface of the water and farther from the base of the fuselage, your side-to-side stability becomes more challenged. Like the side-to-side stability, the front-to-back foot pressure balance that you use to control the height of your rig is more difficult to manage as well. Falls will be more dynamic; the higher you ride as well. For experienced riders who have developed their stabilizer muscles, the extra length of the mast can come with added advantages. When your board is riding higher off the water, you've got more time and distance to correct any mistakes you may make before you touch down. Having that extra height between the 26.5" and the 29.5" also aids in flatwater pumping. It gives you a little more room to work the foil up and down. Lastly, being higher in the air lets you lean into your turns and ride a bit more aggressively when carving. These effects increase as you move up through the rest of the size options. The 26.5" and 29.5" and the two beginner-friendly sizes in the range. The 29.5" is a very popular size for prone or SUP surfing.
32.5" Mast (Plate Only): This is our favorite size for wake foiling. When riding the boat wake, the mast is long enough to give you good height for pumping and carving, but not too long, so it still reacts quickly on the small waves (compared to the ocean). The 32.5 is also A good length for riders who have some foiling experience who want to learn to wingfoil or kitefoil.
36.5" Mast: This size is the go-to option for experienced wingfoil and kitefoil riders. The extra length helps in choppy conditions, getting the rider up over the wind chop. It's not great for underpowered, light-wind riding because of the slower reaction time and added drag from the additional length.
40" Mast: This is the longest mast in the GoFoil line. It's recommended only for experienced riders, and the added length slows down the reaction time even more than the 36.5". The 40" length is a good option for racing/speed, where you want to limit the possibility of breaching. It's also suitable for riding in very choppy conditions because it gives you extra length to glide above extreme chop.
The goal of this guide is to outline the common questions we get regarding the GoFoil mast system. You've got some great options when it comes to building your perfect foil system on the GoFoil platform. Check out our other articles that address an array of different topics about GoFoils hydrofoil products in our Gear Guides.