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  Topic Review (Newest First)
11-23-2013 02:45 PM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

Sal, I understand what you are saying. I have a few things to check into:

First: Keel Bolt Tension (although I think it is OK)
Second: check the Rigging Tension.
Third: Assess how much flexing to too much (this is the tough part).
Forth: Assess the integrity of the existing fiberglass (may require a moisture meter).
Fifth: After I have checked into the above items, determine if I have to reinforce.
Sixth: If I do reinforce, determine flexing needed in the structure (just glass/glass and stringers/appropriate area to grind down and build up)
Seventh: Buy a different boat?

The good news is that I have the winter to figure this out. I do appreciate all of the help that this forum has offered as well as the people who have even offered to take a look! This forum clearly has a great group of people!

11-23-2013 10:01 AM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

exactly sal...
11-22-2013 08:13 AM
Sal Paradise
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

I'm not a naval architect, but I am an architect and I do bit of structural design. If in fact your hull is flexing transverse about the keel and you find nothing obviously loose or broken, and you decide to repair it yourself - you do not want to creat a short ( or narrow) , stiff repair. That could propogate a crack right where the stiff repair ends. You want to spread the bending moment out port to starboard and allow the keel bending moment to be spread until the stress is low enough to be transferred into the original hull evenly. That means the repair is going to be wider.
11-21-2013 11:11 PM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

This is some interesting advice. I must admit that I didn't think about the rigging. I do tend to run the rigging pretty tight, however, it is worth checking into. I will also double check the keel bolts this weekend. Also this boat has a deck stepped mast. The step on the R23 is on a solid fiberglass beam, (not cored with wood)

Harmonic, any pictures of the work that you did? It sounds like what I have been considering. I grew up doing glass work, however, I am thinking of that as a last resort.
11-21-2013 03:14 PM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

Another resource for this question may be found over on the cruising forum of sailing anarchy. I recall a guy who goes by memopad has a ranger with the same problem and posted about his experience. Boomer is on the same forum and had a lot of time on Rangers too.
11-21-2013 12:30 PM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

Aha! Thanks for revealing the the secret to Leon Hillman's much vaunted racing success, the wobbly keel. I'm in the market for a hot boat but doesn't support a "wobbly keel" search.
11-21-2013 10:56 AM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

truer words have never been spoken...(the part about yogi, not me! jajaja)


good stuff lillia28
11-21-2013 10:44 AM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

Sounds like a man who knows what he is talking about.
As Yogi said
In theory, theory and practice are the same thing.
In practice, they aren't.
11-21-2013 10:27 AM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

here is my take on it...definetly DONT have to listen or whatever...

I had this exact same scenario on my Islander excalibur 26

the excalibur 26 was ahead of its day back in the 60s, in fact it was the little sister to the cal 40, another LIGHT displacement boat in its day...

when I redid the rigging on my excalibur I took the boat back to my dock and almost had a heart attack when I got off the boat(unrigged)

this is an important point

the keel on the excalibur 26 is deep, thin and quite big...

when I would walk on the side decks I coul not only feel the keel wobble but the bilges would move and other words the floor boards where either getting moved side to side...or up and down...depending on how extreme the angle was...

so I had a friend move aroound on the boat and I could see the whole bilge and keel move laterally!

I got so freaked out I did nothing for like a month...

sooooo I called one of the best surveyors in town...he took notice of it...then said RIG THE BOAT

step the mast and tension rig CORRECTLY per lapworth specs...

and guess what?

all movement gone

what happens is the thin (light displacement for that time fiberglass work) simply softens up a bit...

my boat had no keel bolts, basically the keel is hanging...the glass just works over 40 years and its not as stiff as it used to be...

I know this can seem as heresy but that does NOT mean your keel will fall off, with keel bolts even less....

just make sure yours bolts and nuts are up to spec and torque and take some test sails with correct rigging tension...

again this is just some advice to take doesnt mean it its exactly what you have going on but...take it with a grain if salt if you will...

if you do want to fix the flexiness there are a number of ways to do so...layup in the bilges and stringers...or even on the outside...etc...

remeber however that some fixes have adverse effects...too stiff here you crack somewhere else, to loose here and something gives...stiff and stronger is not ALWAYS better...there is a happy medium...

good luck
11-21-2013 09:17 AM
Re: Ranger 23 Keel Wobble Advice

Do a google search on Ranger 23 hull. There is a thread on sailboat owners that describes something similar. Also check the R23 group on Yahoo. I have a feeling this is not unique to your boat. There may be proven fixes.
in Spurr's Guide he discusses ways to avoid "oil canning" or "panting" of the hull, which if I understand correctly is the walls of the hull flexing in and out. The would wiggle the keel. The "cure" is to bond in some longitudinal stringers, such as wood battens or stiff PVC hose, to give the sides more strength. It doesn't sound difficult, or expensive, just labor intensive as you have to clear the liner away to get at the hull. If it is in fact a common issue, and the boat has survived all this time, leaving it alone doesn't sound so bad. Can you get in touch with the original owner? He may have some in sights. If the boat is not leaking, and the hull is otherwise in good condition I don't think it is a terminal issue. My first post on here was about an O'Day 28 that had sat on the hard so long, the stands pushed the starboard quarter into a decent sized dent. The yard owner and several on here suggested it was no big deal, and in fact after I passed and another bought it, the hull "popped" on launching, and the boat is sailing fine. The more I research, the better I feel about this. Assuming you don't mind the work. If you dangle a cold Guinness in front of me, I can be talked into almost anything.

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