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post #1 of 10 Old 01-15-2004 Thread Starter
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Survey a Ranger 23?

Hello--
I am interested in getting back into sailing after a 10+ year haitus, and have found a 1977 Ranger 23 that looks to be in good condition. The current owner had had the boat for 4 years, and (he says) that he hasn''t sailed it that hard.

Should I pay the $400 to get it surveyed? I am giving the boat a thorough once over in a few days, and then I will decide if I will pay a professional to look at it.

What are some things to look for on this boat?

thanks,
Chris
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post #2 of 10 Old 01-15-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

I really like these boats. They are one of the boats that recommend most strongly to people who are looking for a first boat. BUT by all means get the boat surveyed. A boat like this can easily have problems that far exceed the value of the boat. Obviously some of these things can be seen with the naked ey, but others take training, equipment and experience that even a very experienced sailor generally would not have.

Areas of concern on these boats are the mast step, chainplates, deck core, hull to deck joint, keel bolts, sump/floor frames (which is not the same as the cabin sole deck frames).

Jeff
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post #3 of 10 Old 01-16-2004 Thread Starter
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Survey a Ranger 23?

Jeff--
Thanks for the advice. Before I bring in the surveyor, can you tell be any indicators about the areas of concern you list that would help me immediately disqualify the boat?

Thanks again,
Chris
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post #4 of 10 Old 01-16-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

I owned hull number 739. They are fantastic boats.

One common problem is that the stress and flexing at the keel eventually tends to open the seam between the keel and hull. There is often substantial leakage, and on my boat we had to eventually drop the keel to do an effective repair.
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post #5 of 10 Old 01-16-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

I owned hull number 739. They are fantastic boats.

One common problem is that the stress and flexing at the keel eventually tends to open the seam between the keel and hull. There is often substantial leakage, and on my boat we had to eventually drop the keel to do an effective repair.
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post #6 of 10 Old 01-16-2004 Thread Starter
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Survey a Ranger 23?

How can I tell if this is a problem? Will I see a crack when hauled, or will there be water around the keel bolts?
--Chris
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post #7 of 10 Old 01-16-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

If the boat is hauled out while you''re present, you may be able to see the keel ''settle'' when picked up and put down on a cradle or jack stands. If in the water, a wet bilge may or not be indicative, since it may come from other sources. There may be a noticable crack around the seam.

A cautionary note, the presence of a keel seam crack does not, of itself, indicate that the boat is leaking at that location. It MAY be. It depends upon the degree of ''wobble'', and the extent of flexing under sail. If shes in the water, I would dry the shallow bilge, and go sailing. Check the bilge often - see if she starts to show water.

Also, take a look at the nuts atop the keel bolts.They may be a bear to deal with if you need to remove the keel.

Unless, your able to do this work yourself, I would pass on the boat.
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post #8 of 10 Old 01-16-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

I have friend who is selling a Ranger 23''. I actually owned this boat for a while and can attest that this is a really sound Ranger 23.
The boat is in Rhode Island and you can probably but it for around $3,000.
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-02-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

I''ve owned hull #705 (1977) since 1982. I race it extensively on San Francisco Bay in typical winds of 20-25kts. Did a race a year ago in steady 50kt winds (dbl handed on reefed main only) so I can attest to how sturdy this boat is! 4 things to look for:

1. deformation of the mast step. this is the beam above the bulkhead between the cabin and the vberth. whenever sailing in > 18kts a temporary post should be placed between the hull and the mast (center of the door between the cabin and vberth. A 1" pipe with a jacking screw and pads on the ends works well. This will prevent donward sag in this beam.

2. Deck to hull seam seepage. you cant avoid this without reseating the whole seam - a nasty chore. I just live with it and mop up after a hard race. If you still have the nice cloth hull liner this seepage will deteriorate it over time and it will start to fall off the wall.

3. The afore mentioned keel attachment crack. Not a big deal. The seam is well bedded and I''ve never had a leak here. Several years ago I ground away a 6" wide swath around this seam and laid in fiberglass cloth with epoxy resin and then refaired and bottom painted. The crack hasn''t been aproblem since.

4. Blisters. I haul once every 3 years (the water in Vallejo Ca is brackish and Petit trinadad (70% Cu) lasts that long!) I''ll get 100-200 small blisters each haulout. I just grind and fill them with epoxy filler. Perhaps a complete epoxy bottom coat would help but the time & effort (or cost of having it done) doesn''t seem worth it. A 4" angle grinder with 40 grit sanding disk makes quick work of the blister "burn out" (you can see the water boil out from the sanding heat) this way no dryout time is needed and you can fill them immediately after cleaning with acetone.

$400 to survey a $4000 boat? He''ll give you the standard list of things that any boat will need replacing like the standing rigging. Check the valves on the 3 thru hull fittings. Other than this there''s not much serious that can go wrong. With no prop in the water, electrolisis is almost nonexsistant on these boats. Of course the tiller/rudder post bracket tends to wear but a little bit of intuitive repair can fix this. Also check for mast pitting. If not repainted occasionally this can be a problem with any boat. Are there still any original booms on these boats? If you have one, it''s probably bent at the vang attachment and will eventually break there in a good wind. Replace it with a heavier section and you won''t have the problem anymore (insurance covered most of mine when it broke. One last thing - If you still have the original Navtec SS turnbuckles they should be replaced with Monel turnbuckles. They were quietly recalled many years ago. My rigging shop handed a whole set of new ones for free when I showed him my broken one. I was lucky I didn''t loose the whole rig. (the SS design was suseptable to crevice corrosion cracking under the swaged on adjusting nut in the center of the connecting rod)

With all this said, Its been a great little boat for the 22 years I''ve owned it and I have no plans to sell it until I retire and have time to enjoy cruising on a bigger boat.
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post #10 of 10 Old 02-11-2004
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Survey a Ranger 23?

In my area surveyors charge $10 to $12 per foot so $400 seems high unless he is going up the mast or is also doing comprehensive mechanical on engine (usually done by separate marine mechanic) or maybe an oil analysis which is separate charge from testing lab. A survey is only as good as the surveyor and no one can be an expert on every boat so you are on right course by gathering as much info as possible on the particular boat you are looking at. It helps you to be able to guide surveyor to areas of concern for that boat he may not be aware of.
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