Re: Going to look at a boat
Honestly if the discussion on loose footed sails is going way over your head then I'd suggest slowing down, spending more time learning about sailing (through classes, local clubs, hanging out at the docks) and assessing what you want or need.
The problem with moving too fast is that you can easily end up with a boat that has negative value and be stuck with either a massive "Fix it" project or figuring out how to dump it. Neither option is going to be any fun.
The Ranger 26 is a good boat design. Figuring out if this Ranger 26 is a good one takes some skills that it sounds like you don't have. Any mechanically inclined person who can be objective can get those skills by reading a few books and looking at a lot of boats.
boats that I sail on regularly: Pearson 28-2, Rondar 505, Yankee 30, Blanchard Junior