Ranger 26: Breaking down the problems and needful things..

Some interior musings.

When looking at the Ranger 26 a few things cry out for attention.  Most notably the galley, or should we say the lack of a galley, situation. Everybody needs to eat and anyone living on a frugal cruising budget is going to be cooking most all of their meals aboard so it is a very important system on any VolksCruiser. We’re going to have to shoehorn a reasonable galley workplace where you can actually cook as opposed to just heating stuff up. Throw in the fact that you’ll need easily accessible stowage for galley utensils and a means of easily washing up after cooking/dining which entails water storage and and plumbing. This area might actually be the most difficult project on the list.

Next on the list is the head. I’ve lived with a portapotti and you can get by with one but as a DIY composting toilet takes about the same amount of room, is actually cheaper than a portapotti or MSD, and works better so the composting toilet gets on the project list. Having a proper bathroom on a 26 foot boat is really just too problematic so we’ll work along the lines that showers will be in the cockpit and work on that issue when we’re working on the cockpit.

A comfortable dedicated place to sleep is important. The Ranger 26 has a dinette which can be converted into a double bed, a V berth forward and a settee which opens to a wider single if you remove the back board. My guess is the V berth makes the best choice for most folk but it is something you may want to give some serious thought to.

A place to lounge. Everybody needs a comfortable place to sit and read, watch videos, or just relax. Comfort is important and it is vital to keep this in mind while you’re making decisions. For most people the settee will fill this need. Personally, I’d vote for the settee because you’ll also need a workable sea berth and it can do double duty.

Stowage, of course, the boat needs more stowage, fact is all boats need more stowage. You need a place for food, water, fuel, clothes, tools, books, toys and the list tends to be endless.There are a lot of clever (dare I say cunning?) ways to maximize stowage but the real trick is to realize that a 26-foot boat is a finite space and you’re going to have to do some serious need/want exercise to get that endless list down to a manageable one that will fit into a 26-foot long envelope. Your ongoing mantra will have to become…

“Less stuff more stowage!”

Which leaves us with the project list for the interior so far as:

  1. A new galley
  2. A composting head
  3. Adding more stowage

Next up we’ll look at what we need to think about on the deck, cockpit, and add a wild card to the mix.

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1 thought on “Ranger 26: Breaking down the problems and needful things..”

  1. Great analyisis! This thinking could apply to a whole slew of small VCs… their hull and superstructures aren't so different in this size range.

    A couple of first glance thoughts…

    The head area as designed runs all the way across the hull. The solid swinging door looks awkward for enter exit (have to edge around it to close, coming or going… maybe an accordion or fabric door?).

    So it looks to me that the s'brd third of the head isn't crucial to head or bunk. If the settee were slid forward (bulkhead surgery?), that would free up galley counter/stowage space with relatively easy mods?.

    Looking at the dinette, we find that, even in our larger boat, we NEVER sit more than two at the dinette. It gets crowded, and guests are uneasy. So we spread out to the settee and give guests the table.

    That has us considering a two person table integrated with longitudinal storage lockers to table height running along the hull. It would help contain and organize at hand a lot of what ends up on and cluttering the table.

    Downside is we'd loose the break-down double bunk to a single. But then, we hardly ever use that feature, either.

    I wrote this post re some galley head ideas. Readers contributed some great 2-bucket system refinement ideas in the comment section.


    Dave Z

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