Moomba is owned and built by Skier’s Choice, a privately held company from Maryville Tennessee which also owns and manufactures the Supra performance wakeboard and waterski towboats. Moomba boats are truly in the value boat segment for surfing.
Moomba is considered to offer great value in the budget boat space. The innovation from the higher-end Supra line trickles down the Moomba line over time, with frequent upgrades. Moomba owners generally feel they’re getting a very good bang for their buck.
While not as good for skiing as direct drives which produce a small flat wake, Moomba boats are fantastic surfing, wakeboarding, and tubing boats.
The Moomba Max, and others like the Supreme 238, Malibu 23ft, or ATX 24, all produce great waves with minor weight adjustments.
That said, Moomba boats can be exceptional surf boats when fitted with enough extra weight, and setting them up with a suck gate such as the Nauticurl – which can make a big difference.
If your goal is to surf a lot, Moomba owners generally recommend choosing the largest fat sac option (e.g. “pro ballast option”) when buying your boat.
Moomba boats have a reputation for reliability. Moomba owners often report their boat never having a single issue after 5-6 years of ownership. These boats also maintain very good resale value.
Which Moomba boat to choose?
Some of the main models in the Moomba line include:
- The Helix and Max: no frills, value-oriented models that work well for surfing
- The Craz and Mojo: classic, timeless boats with more customization options
- The Kaiyen and Makai: the newest premium models that are just one step before a Supra.
Many boaters like the looks of the Craz, Mondo, or Mojo, much better than the Max or Helix.
In terms of size, choosing the right Moomba boat depends on how many people you plan to have. The 21.5 and 22 ft Craz and Kaiyen are typically well-suited for a handful of passengers, while the 22.5 / 23 / 24.5′ Max, Mojo, and Makai are good options for groups of 10 or more.
Moomba vs Axis
Fit & finish
The Moombas are generally considered to have much better fit and finish compared to Axis, often considered to lack attention to detail despite higher prices. For example, Axis boats have more plastic materials in the interior than Moomba.
Many boaters agree it’s hard to beat the price of a Moomba given the quality you get.
A Moomba may feel disappointing if demoed without the extra ballast, which generally isn’t included by default.
Conversely, an Axis with the plug n play ballast option will generally surf right out of the gate, or with minimal added ballast. It will have a taller and bigger wave out of the box than a Moomba.
However, the Axis wave will not be adjustable unless you have the Power Wedge (from 2019) but not with a floating wedge. A weighted Moomba, on the other hand, will produce a good wave that can be shaped easily.
Axis boats typically offer a rougher rider than Moomba due to the lack of trim / centerplate, and to the hull shape.
The higher freeboard of a Moomba (e.g. Max) or Supra boat also makes them less likely than an Axis to take a wave over the bow.
Axis boats tend to have an inferior tower compared to the Moomba’s Roswell tower. Axis towers can easily get damaged when folding the side plates. Two people may be needed to set up and fold the tower if there are multiple speakers on it.
An Axis boat set up for surfing with a wedge and surf gate – which create a lot of drag – will generally be less fuel efficient than a Moomba – which is a surf tab boat.
Moomba vs Mastercraft
Mastercraft build quality is generally considered noticeably superior to Moomba.
On the other hand, many boaters agree a stock Moomba Makai will outperform a stock NXT24 for the surf wave, although the comparison can obviously be altered with weight.
While the craftsmanship of a Moomba may not be up to par with a Mastercraft, most everyone agrees you get a lot of value for your money, including more electronic features compared to a similar level Mastercraft.
The Raptor motor is also not as clean as the Illmor GDI found in the NXT24.
Moomba vs other brands
Moomba has lower draft compared to Supreme and Centurion boats – the latter are 32″ or more, which can be problematic for shallow areas with many people aboard and added weight.
Supra boats weight more than Moomba boats without added ballast. For example, a 23′ Moomba Max weighs 4500 lbs vs 5800 lbs for a stock Supra SA.
Moomba and Supra boats keep their bow rise in check while surfing, generally in the 7.5 – 9º range. In comparison, Axis and Malibus have bow rise of 12-13º when using power wedge. Mastercraft boats are even higher.
Things to consider when choosing a Moomba boat
- Make sure you know your priorities about things that matter the most, e.g. craftsmanship, warranty, dealer support, wave/wake, design, gadgets, stereo, etc.
- Asses how many people will be riding with you most of the time – if you have a lot friends and/or family you may want to opt for 23′ or bigger.
- Keep in mind your Moomba wave may not be great out of the box, get ready to add weight and tweak it before you can achieve that tall long wave with nice push.
- Carefully consider the boat’s interior fit and finish, space, features, price, ability to add weight
The Moomba Mojo handles most water condition very well. Versions of the boat like the Surf Edition produce a really nice and big wave particularly in deep water.
Compared to the Axis T23, the Mojo has a better wave lip for airs and a longer wave – although the Axis tends to have a wider pocket for bottom turns.
Some Mojo owners achieve a nice wave with 800 lb sacs in the back, 400 lbs in the center, and 200 lbs of lead in the bow, riding at 22mph.
Others push the weight up to 3000 lbs total – 900 on each side, 400 center, 850 in the bow across the seat, resulting in a pretty good wake providing people are positioned evenly on both sides.
The Mojo also offers a decent waterski wave, better than many other inboards.
The Mojo allows for better customization than other models in the Moomba lineup.
The Craz feels premium with great fit and finish, better than other pricier boat options. The technology is also very nice with both a touch screen and physical toggles so you can choose between the two for every action.
The Craz offers good surf out of the box, even without touching any settings. It also produces a clean wake from 21 mph if weighted – or from 18 mph with no added weight.
The Moomba Craz’s ballast fill up very quickly thanks to the 6 pumps. The engine is also very quiet.
On the down side, the Craz is quite heavy and isn’t the fastest boat (around 40 mph). Driving slow can also be a bit challenging.
Moomba Makai / Mondo
The Makai is loaded with features in its standard version, including a center walk through, sub floor ballast, a 7″ touch screen, hinges on the seats, Gatorstep flooring, fiberglass swim step, 4000 lbs of ballast, 6 ballast pumps, Autowake, and more.
It has a good transmission ratio and comes with the flow plates. The Makai handles great in rough water.
At 20.5 feet, the Moomba Mondo is 1 foot shorter than the Makai. Among the Moomba and Supra lineups. It’s probably the boat that surfs the best out of the box – it comes with 3700 lbs stock ballast.
Pushing the weight up to around 4000 lbs is enough to produce a killer wave on the Mondo.
Moomba Max / Helix
Many boaters agree the Moomba Max has one of the best surf waves on the market, namely because of the pickle fork and modified V hull which creates significant water displacement. The added features on the Max also contribute to a rampier wave.
The Max throws an incredible wave, especially for its price point. Adding 500 lbs midship bags and 500 lbs of lead spread evenly will make the wave even better.
The only caveat is that the high standard ballast may not always be adequate in shallower water.
The Max also cuts through chop really well, you barely notice it.
The Helix is a fantastic smaller length alternative to the Max. With upgraded ballast, the Helix is also a surf machine. The Helix’s affordable price allows you to add many options without breaking the bank.
Cover and product photos courtesy of Moomba Boats