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Old 06-14-2019, 03:12 PM   #21
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Old 06-14-2019, 07:33 PM   #22
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Isn't the hull form the same? My understanding is that the Ranger Tugs are simply a Cutwater with a cute design.
Nope. They are (were) different and the two don't share the same lengths. Now that Ranger/Cutwater are all slowly changing over to outboards and becoming fast cruisers, I'm not sure of the hulls, anymore.


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Old 06-15-2019, 12:57 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Todd2 View Post
Nope. They are (were) different and the two don't share the same lengths. Now that Ranger/Cutwater are all slowly changing over to outboards and becoming fast cruisers, I'm not sure of the hulls, anymore.



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Old 06-17-2019, 01:52 PM   #24
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First I have never owned a Ranger. I do own and cruise in a 30’ Sundowner. Ranger “tugs” are attractive boats that can be trailered. But there in lies the rub. They are narrow light boats that will be rolly in anything other than very flat water unless you are heading into the wind. I would never consider any boat that narrow unless I had to trailer or I was always in sheltered flat water without many speed boats making large wakes. Sleeping in one in many conditions would be challenging unless you wanted to be rocked to sleep in a fairly rough manner. Furthermore any boat wakes that pass you will be very rough. My opinion.
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Old 06-17-2019, 02:24 PM   #25
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I've not been on a Ranger but we were docked behind a cute one, bow to stern on a transient dock. When wakes came through, the Tug rolled a good 30 degrees more in both directions than did our trawler. Decided right then we'd never be interested.
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Old 06-17-2019, 02:35 PM   #26
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When I downsized from a trawler, I went to C Dory's--if you want smaller, lighter, and simple plus easy to tow, that is the answer. I have run most of the Ranger tugs as demo's, and they handle nicely for the size of boats. They are a considerable boat to tow, and although you can use some of the higher capacity 3/4 ton trucks, I would strongly consider a 1 ton.

What was it that decided against the early Ranger Tugs?--difficulty of maintenance. They are complex system boats, in a small size. For example working space on the Diesel engine is cramped, and access not all that easy.

As noted by others--the Cutwater boats were an offshoot of Ranger--not a separate company. The hulls were considerably different. With the diesel powered "tugs" there were a number of engines thru the years. Now the boats are mostly deep "V" hulls with high horsepower outboards.

See how the head and "shower" work space wise for you. Same with the V Berth. The "Coffin Berth" under the dinette is generally useful for storage only. Lots of glitz--well made, boats. My friends who own them have only had minimal issues, such as access to bow and stern thrusters--and at times part of the engine for repair.

I think the main reason to own one is ability to trailer.
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Old 06-17-2019, 02:48 PM   #27
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Ranger Tug

Originally Posted by debbiet View Post
I have Ranger Tug envy.

We have a great 34' trawler. It's a Europa knockoff, solidly-built, well equipped vessel. Single screw, about 13 ton, pretty stable etc. We really love it and have fun with it.

As we get ready to sell our house and downsize, I am starting to think about downsizing the boat too, and getting into a Ranger Tug. They seem more agile, lighter, well-laid out and well-equipped. We'd lose some capacity (fuel, water etc) but we'd also lose the BRIGHTWORK and its maintenance. Plus I think a lighter boat would be easier on the person who ends up horsing the boat around at the dock to get it tied up...because I'll be honest, no-one is going to pay us to dock boats professionally

Has anyone here made such a move and if so can you share your thoughts? We're interested in handling/stability, cabin comfort, etc. Anything that you learned when you transitioned.
Iím considering the same thing. Iím interested in the responses.
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Old 06-17-2019, 03:06 PM   #28
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Old 06-17-2019, 03:44 PM   #29
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Albin 36 to Ranger Tug 31CB

Just went from a 1978 Albin 36 to a 2017 Ranger Tug 31 Command Bridge.

Just took ownership last week and couldn't be happier. Loved the Albin, but man, they go lots of boat into this package.

I spent about 3 years doing my research, most seriously for the last year. Here are a few things that I believe helped make our decision about which Ranger Tug 31CB.

I wanted the biggest boat we can trailer, so we can when we want to. So yes, I bought the trailer, too.

The 31 and the 29 have the engine under the cockpit, NOT under the galley. When you are piloting from the inside, its easy to hear each other.

I didn't want gas, so we went with inboard diesel.

Must have a flybridge, so that narrowed us to the 29 or 31. The 31's flybridge captain chair, as well as entire bridge, is roomier than the 29. Also, as of 2017, the 31CB went to a hard top over the aft cockpit. This gives you seating for 6 on the bridge, and great sun protection for cockpit, and no canvas there to deal with. We love hanging out up top, so this was key for us.

The cockpit on the 31 has kick out seats, making this area extremely roomy.

The 300 hp volvo is a great powerplant. We love moving at trawler speed, but we also jumped up and ran at 15-17 knots, burning 10-12 gph.

Regarding handling, the boat exceeded our expectations. We had some nasty weather on Friday and saturday, 15-20 with gusts to 30. Boat plowed right through it. Of course this boat is a little more tender than the Albin, but not much. Completely comfortable cruising.

The galley is tighter, but I like my wife, so we are just are a little more friendly with each other. We had 6 people for a cruise last Monday and it started raining. Five people sat at the table (1 six footer, 220 lbs) and I piloted her.
Not uncomfortable, but wouldn't want that many people for too long.

So yes, smaller boat, but we have not regrets. We are planning a trip from Baltimore to NYC in 3 weeks and can't wait!

Happy to share more if you are interested.

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Old 06-17-2019, 03:55 PM   #30
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Hi Bob,

Congrats on the new boat!

When you have some experience towing her, I would be interested in hearing how you fare. The 10' beam is an oversize load, but I understand relatively easy to permit. I would like to hear a first hand experience of towing a boat of this width.

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Old 06-17-2019, 04:47 PM   #31
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i have several friends that went thru the ranger tug syndrome, they all wished they had gotten a bigger one, so look before you lleap! i think they are making a bigger one now, they`re made near olympia, wa....clyde
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:24 PM   #32
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I only towed it around the parking lot and launched it twice with my 1500 ecodiesel. I wouldn't dare take it out on the road with such a light truck. I'll probably go to a 2500 or 3500 with cummins.

The go to forum for these boats is Many people, like you and I, have had these larger trawlers that take an enormous amount of work to maintain. Yes, very little teak now and this is a good thing.

Regarding docking. My Albin 36 had no thrusters. I have a situation where I have lots of space to get in and out of my slip, so that wasn't much of a problem. The Ranger has bow and stern thrusters. It feels like cheating, but boy is it great. I docked in 15 to 20 wind and the thruster kept me off the leeward pilings just fine while the first mate grabbed the lines.

Again with performance. I kept my dark thoughts to myself about being too tender or not feeling solid enough and I am glad I did. The boat honestly out performed my expectations with roll beam seas and 2-3 foot chop. She rolled, but we were felt out of control or nervous. You could just feel the boat could take it.

I will keep you posted about towing. We had a hauler company bring it up from Pensacola. Where we bought it. Left eight AM last Sunday and arrive at six am Monday. He said it handled great on the trailer. Yes, you need permits because it is 10', but that's no big deal.

We got her from Edgewater yacht sales/Modern Tugs. Check out their website. Great family owned business, excellent service. Emile Petro runs it.

I'm glad we went with the 31, command bridge and hard top. This really opens up the 31 foot vessel on the outside. The inside is a little smaller then the Albin 36, but well appointed and great layout.

Let me know if you have any more questions.

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Old 06-17-2019, 09:34 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by rsn48 View Post
Here are the specs of a Cutwater 30, mine is an older express cruiser and interestingly especially in side winds the lower profile of a e. cruiser is much less so it doesn't rock and roll as much as many trawlers. And with speed, you cut down the effect even more.

The beam is 10 feet:

LOA molded - 30' 0"
LOA rigged - 34' 4"
Bridge clr. (mast dn) 9' 9"
Beam - 10' 0"
Draft - 29"
Weight, dry - 10,200 lbs
Fuel cap. - 180 gal
Water cap. - 80 gal
Holding cap. - 40 gal
Height on trailer - 13' 2"
Those numbers are reminiscent of my Mainship 30 Pilot II in the avatar. More water and holding capacity, but my boat is 12,000 pounds. The 315 HP Yanmar diesel will run it at 16 MPH at 80% load.
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Old 06-18-2019, 07:56 AM   #34
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trawler to tug

I know what you mean about bright work. We went from a 42 toot CHB trawler to a Ranger 25 tug. We have been looping with the tug for 3 years with returns by trailer to northern Michigan every summer. We had some custom things done to make the tug more livable. We added 2 drawers under the dining table where the cave is. This greatly improved quick access to clothes and eliminated living out of a suitcase. We also changed the manual head to an electric. Then we added Sat TV for those evening weather and newscasts. Also we enclosed the aft section with canvas which adds another living area in all kinds of weather. We have almost finished the loop and are now thinking of changing boats again. We are selling our tug so we can make the change. If you have any interest let me know.
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Old 06-18-2019, 11:08 AM   #35
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There is a European classification system for intended purpose of a yacht. It is explained here:

It formalizes what people here are saying. Make sure your boat is safe for it's intended purpose rather than trying to compare two boats that have little in common.
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Old 06-18-2019, 06:24 PM   #36
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We owned a Ranger tug 25 for 6 years. We lived in central S.C. and trailered her over the mountains to the Tennessee River as well as many times to the coast of South Carolina and Florida. We now own a Kadey Krogen 39 and live aboard. We loved the Ranger tug and as we lived on a lake had her tied up behind the house. We used her weekly and learned her positives and negatives. We owned a Bubba truck to tow her (GMC 2500 diesel) and the trailer. For us towing a large boat was not the most pleasant task. The Ranger tug did have many options that we loved. As others have said, they put a lot of systems on a small boat. Servicing some of these systems was tough because of space. In my opinion if you wanted to trailer a boat to see places that were not possible without moving the boat, then I would recommend the tugs. If docking was an issue, then I would spend the money and time to add a thruster or have do have docking practice with a training captain. Just my opinion
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Old 06-18-2019, 08:28 PM   #37
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I have an R-27 Ranger Tug Classic (diesel inboard). One of my prime requirements was the ability to tow. Another requirement was the ability to stay-a-board for extended trips (without having to convert the bow berth to seating, or the dinette table into a berth, twice daily). I think this boat works well for a couple, as I intended. It'll never be a live-a-board. If two couples are on an extended trip - they better be really good friends.

If you are interested in towing a Ranger tug, read on, if not, then skip the rest of this post:

The R-21 variants all have a 6'8" beam. I consider this an overnighter (weekend, week long) vacation boat. Towable anywhere trailers are allowed.

The R-23, R-25, R-27/C-24, C-26, C-28 all have an 8'6" wide beams. They are legal to tow in all states on federal interstate freeways without a permit. Most (but not all) states allow towing on all roads. A few states still restrict towing to 5 miles off the freeway only to get to gas, food, lodging, etc. (old school). Some local restrictions may apply, like no two-lane roads less then 12' wide, or low bridge roads, or congested toll ways, etc. - essentially anywhere a Class A motorhome is allowed.

R-29, R-31/C-30 models all have a 10' wide beam. A wide load permit is required to tow in (virtually) every state. Restrictions vary by state: Wide load banners, flags, lights, no traveling at night or no holiday weekend towing, road restrictions, etc., etc. (In contrast, buy an annual permit in Florida for ~$15.00 and they almost don't care less what you do.) There are companies that specialize in getting all the permits for you to tow to your cross-country destination - for a fee. If you tow infrequently, to and from your favorite boating location each year (for example, down the east coast to Florida and back) - not that big of a deal. If you plan on towing all over the country, check the laws in every state you might tow through to help you decide if its worth the hassle to you.

The R-41 model has a 14' beam (included for the sake of discussion only). I don't consider this a "towable" boat, but a boat that could be delivered to the owner's destination. It would require a commercial hauler, permits, flags, flashing lights, and private or law enforcement escort vehicles, road closures, etc., etc. By the time you get to this size, I think Ranger loses it's niche advantage and your choices of manufacturer are wide open.

OK that's the Ranger/Cutwater line up (that I can remember). Happy hunting.

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Old 06-30-2019, 11:02 PM   #38
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Rangers are cool looking... they have that awesome work boat feel... BUT I know three people that own them and are trying to get rid of them because they simply are NOT seaworthy on puget sound. The moment the sea changes or any kind of wind picks up the rangers simply get tossed around and they cant handle it. The bow and stern thrusters are under powered (in my opinion). If you are looking at something look at a Beneteau Swift trawler as it does have a keel... or stay put, but I would advise against the move, pretty sure you will regret it.
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Old 07-01-2019, 06:12 PM   #39
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Well, Iím pretty impressed, after yet another week of ownership of a 31CB. Iíve had an Albin 36 for about 15 years, so I know about the handling of s small trawler. The Albin had no thrusters, so we are quite impressed with the Ranger set up. It does seem like more thruster power would be nice, but this is a great leap over nothing at all.

Tomorrow Iím going to pull here out to give the hull a good waxing. Try that with a larger trawler...
Still happy,
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Old 07-01-2019, 07:08 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Boat View Post
There is a European classification system for intended purpose of a yacht. It is explained here:

It formalizes what people here are saying. Make sure your boat is safe for it's intended purpose rather than trying to compare two boats that have little in common.
The last sentence is one of the most sensible ever posted on TF.

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