Re: Back stay boom supporter broke - now what?
Well, without going up the mast... you could consider a boom-kicker, or a rigid vang.
Without a kicker or a top lift (or that pigtail), for when you are docked, and need the boom lifted, you can use the halyard, attached sufficiently far back on the boom.. obviously this would be AFTER you've flaked the main. But as long as your goose pivots far enough it's really not a deal breaker.
I've got a topping lift, and others are right, they are handy for reefing, and for when you drop sail... but pretty much the entire rest of the time it's a PITA. It's constantly interfering with the leech, and, messes with my ability to check flow off the main. I know the kickers dont' fully support the boom and all, but I think I'd prefer it since it's pretty much set it and forget it.
Boatless - suffering through liars and used car [pronounced boat] salespeople who are incapable to seeing the truth.