New Owner of Ranger 33
I just bought hull number 408 and have lots of questions, but I'll start with these:
Has anyone changed the fiberglass fuel tank?
The PO uses the toe rail to attach the blocks for the jib. Is this OK or has anyone put in rails? Also the PO took out the cabin window frames and just bolted all around the 3 (port and starboard) windows. Does anyone know where I can find replacement frames and windows?
I would like to add roller furling for the jib. Any recommendations?
Steve R33 Barbara J
Gunny- you might try a search on this site for roller furling. There have been a couple threads addressing various furlers lately.
I run my headsail off of blocks on the toe rail. The main purpose of a track is so you can change your sheeting angle for different wind conditions.
Can't tell you where to find replacement portlights, but it's not uncommon for them to be changed as your's were. You might have better luck buying after market ports rather than trying to replace the originals.
Congratulations on your new boat...you've only just begun <G>.
My buddy had a Ranger 33 as his first boat and enjoyed it. I have a Viking 33...they are quite similar in the specs and the general '70s racer-cruiser design mindset. Bolt through plexi or Lexan portlights are quite common and when installed well (bedded securely and the boltholes through the...likely...balsa core have been given epoxy "donuts") are probably better than the original butyl-tape gasketted aluminum frames.
The Ranger 33 used to be on the big side of middle and is now on the big side of small <G>, but if it's fair, it's still a good windward performer and a very nice size for a couple. Just watch for old dangerous crap like frozen gate valves over the thru-hulls and rotted mast steps or dodgy original standing rigging.
They can be added after the fact, but keep in mind that the deck might not be reinforced adequately in the area you want to put them, and so they may require some heavy backing plates. The coring in the Rangers was plywood in some areas, so if you can determine that and its condition that will be helpful in deciding what measures to take. Sealing the new track mounting holes is crucial, you don't want to compromise the core in the deck. Drilling oversized holes, filling with epoxy and then redrilling to size is the best way to do this. There will be some gains in performance if the tracks are properly placed. It would be good to find some other 33s and get some dimensions there.
Another issue that often arises when tracks are added is that now the headsail needs to come inboard of the lifelines - another chore for each tack unless you steer slowly through the turn and sheet in quickly enough to keep the sail inboard (practice, practice!) Sometimes the lifeline configuration can be changed if necessary.
Portlights: the original Ranger ports were pretty notorious for leaking when old, so that's probably why it's been changed - if not leaking now I'd leave it. If it's the look you don't like, then there are some aftermarket suppliers (pricey) that do a great job.
Most recognized headsail furlers will do a good job for you, with Harken a pretty safe bet all round for whatever gear you need, though there are others that are less costly for less demanding needs. I know many people happy with Furlex, for example, and I hear the installation of them is pretty simple.
Welcome to our world, and good luck!
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