Need advice on "Going Ranger"

What's on your mind? Anything generic goes here.

Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby KKBoatFanatic on Sun Jun 18, 2017 5:54 pm

I'm a new member from Suttons Bay, Michigan, and have been boating on and off for more than 30 years with 10 different vessels ranging from an 11' rigid-bottom inflatable to a 38' Tiara. We recently "discovered" Ranger Tugs and fell in love, so much so that we're putting our current boat (a 3500 Tiara Open that we've had for less than two years, and have just gotten fitted out the way we want it!) up for sale tomorrow. We're hoping for a quick sale so the search can begin for her successor - a Ranger Tug. Motivations are 1) Wanting something smaller that I can operate single-handed; 2) Wanting something more economical to own and operate; and 3) Being smitten with the uniqueness and salty character of the Ranger Tugs. We have only seen one "up close and personal" (a brand new 23 on display at the Grand Rapids boat show), and obviously haven't been able to go for a sea trial...but we've read so extensively about them and watched so many videos that we're confident this is a good boat for me. Budget constraints will likely force me to get one that's at least a couple of years old. The 25, 27 and 29 have piqued our interest specifically - instinct says the 27 is a perfect size for our needs, yet we're concerned about rear visibility from the helm since the starboard location of the head blocks the view. At this point we're wide open to suggestions, and would love to hear from this passionate group of owners about what they love about their Ranger Tugs - and also their least favorite features. BTW, I read that there is a Ranger Rendezvous in Charlevoix at the end of July, and we are definitely going to make the trek north to attend - I'm hoping there may be opportunities to view some of the various models and talk to owners about their pride-and-joy vessels. Any information and comments to help us narrow down the search will be most appreciated! We're looking forward to joining the Ranger Tug family. :D
Kari Karr & Don Clingan and canine crew "Bailey"
R-29S "DAGNY T"
Suttons Bay, Michigan
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby Champ on Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:16 pm

We love our R-23. Perfect boat for my wife and I. 90% day boat use.
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby ixlr8 on Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:29 pm

What about the new 27 with the outboard? Nice size, head is in front of the helm so view out the back is unobstructed.
Jim
2018 RT-27 OB Claret Red "Maggie"- on order
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby rpmerrill on Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:55 pm

Well, I have a 27 and first thing you have to remember that you are inside an enclosed cabin. Visibility all around is not as good as a boat with a flying bridge. The only real blind spot is, as you said, directly behind the helm. The previous owner had mounted a 5"x6" mirror on the railing just outside the helm window. It covers just about everything I need for visibility and I check it constantly, especially when turning to starboard. The one visibility problem that still bugs me is when my wife sits out on the back deck. Most of the time I can see her, but if the sun comes around, she will move over to the starboard side for shade. Every now and then I panic and run back to make sure she is still on board. Haven't lost her yet.
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby S. Todd on Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:19 pm

We joined the Ranger Tug family in 2015 after more than 30 years in various Sea Ray boats that we could trailer from Indianapolis. Our favorite launching ramp is in your back yard (Elk Rapids). Suttons Bay is a great place but we have spent more time in Northport and Beaver Island. We like the level floor plan of the R25SC much more than the arrangement with the head down by the V berth in our prior Sea Rays and over the up and down of the raised pilot house in the Nordic Tugs. The head visibility issue is not a problem in fair weather, I just look out the side window. I find boating up there in your waters and in the North Channel there is just not that much traffic that I have a problem looking out the window. We love the boat and find it very functional for the way we cruse (which is almost always for week long excursions, until retirement three years away). Bow and stern thrusters make docking relatively easy. Not having to deal with the canvas that we used in the express cruisers is a big plus, and in poor weather conditions resulted in much worse visibility issues. Do come visit us in Charlevoix and remind us of this "chat" and we will do what we can to get you acquainted with the boat. Our purchase experience with Reed Yacht Sales in Grand Haven was all positive.
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby Bill & Donna Sibbers on Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:41 pm

Keep in mind the RT29 is 10' wide vs 8'6" for the RT27 and shorter resulting in a relative improvement in stability and comfort.
Sea Natural
R31S
www.seanatural.net
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby KKBoatFanatic on Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:07 pm

S. Todd wrote:We joined the Ranger Tug family in 2015 after more than 30 years in various Sea Ray boats that we could trailer from Indianapolis. Our favorite launching ramp is in your back yard (Elk Rapids). Suttons Bay is a great place but we have spent more time in Northport and Beaver Island. We like the level floor plan of the R25SC much more than the arrangement with the head down by the V berth in our prior Sea Rays and over the up and down of the raised pilot house in the Nordic Tugs. The head visibility issue is not a problem in fair weather, I just look out the side window. I find boating up there in your waters and in the North Channel there is just not that much traffic that I have a problem looking out the window. We love the boat and find it very functional for the way we cruse (which is almost always for week long excursions, until retirement three years away). Bow and stern thrusters make docking relatively easy. Not having to deal with the canvas that we used in the express cruisers is a big plus, and in poor weather conditions resulted in much worse visibility issues. Do come visit us in Charlevoix and remind us of this "chat" and we will do what we can to get you acquainted with the boat. Our purchase experience with Reed Yacht Sales in Grand Haven was all positive.



I will definitely look you up in Charlevoix. Thanks!
Kari Karr & Don Clingan and canine crew "Bailey"
R-29S "DAGNY T"
Suttons Bay, Michigan
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby Red Raven on Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:25 pm

The R27 is the best of course! ;)

Seriously, whatever RT boat you choose will depend on your situation. Whatever minor limitation a particular boat has can usually be solved acceptably with a little customization (e.g. A backup camera or mirror on the R25 or R27).

Focus on the things that are important to you but can't easily resolved with personal customization. (e.g. An R 27 Classic will never go 40 knots no meter what you do to it!) It is likely no boat will meet all your needs and desires.

Curt
Curt and Tracy Johansen
Red Raven
2014 R27
Volvo D3 200HP
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby Dale777 on Sun Jun 18, 2017 11:42 pm

KKBoatFanatic,

To address the limited visibility rearward on the R27, see my post from a few years ago about mirrors for the R27:

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=2508&p=18242&hilit=mirror+truck#p18242
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby trailertrawlerkismet on Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:52 am

KKBoatFanatic:

This is Jim just down the road from you in Traverse City. We had a R27 for 5 1/2 years and loved the boat, so much so that we're moving to an R29S.You mentioned the view blockage from the helm looking to the cockpit and we initially felt this would be a problem, however by using a co pilot's eyes to see to the stern from port side seating and or by sticking my head out of the starboard window we adjusted. Several RT's have gone to adding a rearview mirror to the starboard side bow rail for clear rear viewing from the captain seat.

Lisa and I are organizing the Rendezvous in Charlevoix and it would be a great place to see Ranger Tugs and Cutwaters and talk to owners, we'd love for you to join in the fun. If you would send me an email or PM I will forward you information and answer questions about this separately from this post. info@trailertrawlerlife.com

Jim Favors
Jim & Lisa FavorsR29S Kismet
info@trailertrawlerlife.com
http://www.trailertrawlerlife.com
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby kf91 on Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:43 am

I use a Garmin Virb wireless camera on my boat. I used one of the mounts that came with the camera to mount it on the rear window and setup was easy. I made a few combos on the main display that includes the camera, so it's easy to see what's going on behind me. I had contacted the factory for suggestions on getting power back to the rear port window, but Andrew suggested using a portable battery charger. I have a 10000 mAh charger I got off Amazon for $25 and the camera will run all day with capacity to spare.

When I don't have the camera setup, I just stand in the isle and back the boat out of my slip. If you follow the "slow is pro" philosophy, you should be in neutral most of the time anyway. Keep in mind that if you add a dinghy on the swim step you will lose much of your rear visibility anyway.
Brian & Nicole Brown
R-27 OB
Kingston, WA
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby jld on Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:16 pm

Even the R29/31 are relatively smaller boats than your current Tiara. This, of course, has pros and cons.

While the R29 is on my shortlist, so is the Tiara 3500 open, even though they are two somewhat different boats with the Tiara have a 13'+ beam, 40'+ LOA, and twin diesels.

Do you have gassers or diesels in the Tiara? My understanding is that the diesels will cruise at 10 knots on about 4 - 5 gph.

With planning on selling our house, its going to be some time until we are ready the buy another boat. In the interim, since we always wanted to see the Puget Sound, we are thinking about chartering a r29 for a week.

Jim
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby baz on Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:18 pm

You wrote 1) Wanting something smaller that I can operate single-handed
Not a problem with models R-21EC, R-23, R-25SC, R-27, new 2018 R-27, R-29S

You wrote 2) Wanting something more economical to own and operate
Not a problem with models R-21EC, R-23, R-25SC, R-27, new 2018 R-27, R-29S

You wrote 3) Being smitten with the uniqueness and salty character of the Ranger Tugs
Understood completely :D

If you have no issue with Yamaha outboards and like the style of the newest RT models such as the R-23 and new 2018 R-27 these will sure suit your needs. There's absolutely no issue with rearward view on either of these two models. T'is also true for the diesel powered R-29S.

Finding a used R-23 might be a bit difficult as this model only started being available in early 2016.

Finding a used diesel powered R-25, R-25SC, R-27 and R29 should not be a problem. A 5 yr old of any of these models are likely to be in the range of $100K to $200K depending on options and engine hours. Trailers will add cost as well. If you want a 2 yr old one of these models then expect to pay more.

In general, diesel engines are noisier than for the Yamaha outboards; cockpit and inside cabin. The diesel engine will get noisier more so than the outboard as RPM increases.

In general, diesel engines are a tad more economical than for the outboard within the range of 0 to 20 mph. The outboard will provide far more speed when required. The diesel RT models are semi-displacement hulls whereas the outboard models are planing hulls with a deep bow V.

The R29 and R29S provide a very nice Bow island berth.

The R-25, R-25SC, R-27 diesel models provide V-berths whereas the new R-23 and 2018 R-27 models provide a unique V-berth saloon with adjustable height center table, and both have the head enclosure adjacent to the V-berth. The new 2018 R-27's head enclosure is completely private.

To complete you research and reviews of the RT models I suggest you take some time and try and get to actually see the above mentioned RT models. Seeing the actual boats is important and far beyond what you can get from reading here and elsewhere. Goto the the Ranger Rendezvous as Jim has invited you to and see as many of the models that will be there.

Take you time deciding. Continue to read all the relevant stuff in this forum.

Good luck, and I hope you find what you're looking for. :)
Barry, Gill & (Jake Wire Hair Fox Terrier)
SOLD - 2010 R-25 LAXEY
Traded 2016 Ranger Gray R-21EC LAXEY to Ranger Tugs.
R-27/OB, LAXEY, Hull Midnight Blue
Edmonds, WA
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby Navigator's Son on Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:57 pm

When you are looking at the different Ranger models and the different interior layouts, one critical consideration you should keep in mind is how important is it to you to have an easy to deploy dinghy versus a roof/rack mount kayak or other solution.

I loved the layout of the R23, but then I started to consider my unique situation - how would I, single handily, get on/off the boat with 2 dogs if I were anchored or on a buoy. Having the dinghy mounted on the swim step was the decisive factor for me - I can launch and retrieve the dinghy single handed and have a secure foundation for walking in and out of while I go back and forth loading the pups. I wouldn't ever consider trying to do this with a kayak strapped along side with an outboard in the middle.
Robert Kondakjian
NAVIGATOR'S SON
2017 R-25SC
Snohomish, WA
Port of Everett
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Re: Need advice on "Going Ranger"

Postby baz on Mon Jun 19, 2017 3:31 pm

Robert:

I think a boxed up inflatable dinghy that can easily be inflated and assembled using a 12v pump in about 5-10 mins should do the trick.

A dinghy with an assembled hard floor should be fine for dog paws IMO.

IMO... An inflatable dinghy sure beats hanging a dinghy which is attached vertically to the swim platform. This swim platform dinghy arrangement not only adds weight to the stern and increases fuel burn, blocks rear view visibility, acts as a drag inducing parashute, really spoils the stylish look of the Tug and likely will cost more than an inflatable.

A decent size load bearing inflatable can be contained into a box size of approx 44"x24"x11" which could be stowed into the R-23 or new 2018 R-27's center cockpit hold with room to spare, or in the cave under the dinette area.

Getting two dogs into a dinghy single handed be it one that hangs off the swim step platform or into an inflatable dinghy surely is a very similar task, especially if they are small and not 100 lb each. :)

IMO... I think the issues people raise about inflatables being boxed and having to be inflated is an inflated/overblown argument. ;) :o

Granted that the R-23 and the new 2018 R-27 have limited space on the stern platform to bring a dinghy alongside and is not same as or as convenient as a dinghy attached to a clear stern platform via davits and assume placing one dog at a time into the dinghy is not an issue using either type of dinghy. For me, I have a small Wire Hair Fox Terrier weighing no more that 18 lbs and holding him while getting into an inflatable alongside the stern will not be an issue for me.... and of course, if there's no dog to be cared for it's even easier. :)

No matter, we all have different thoughts and requirements and what works for one person is likely not to be optimum for another. Having a dinghy with the boat is important for some and not for others. Some like a sturdy hard surfaced dinghy that can be quickly deployed while others find it's OK if this takes time and isn't necessarily the most convenient.
Last edited by baz on Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:59 pm, edited 4 times in total.
Barry, Gill & (Jake Wire Hair Fox Terrier)
SOLD - 2010 R-25 LAXEY
Traded 2016 Ranger Gray R-21EC LAXEY to Ranger Tugs.
R-27/OB, LAXEY, Hull Midnight Blue
Edmonds, WA
baz
 
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