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  1. #1
    Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    Running 520C at Toledo Bend

    Guys trying to summarize or I would be typing for two hours:

    My Nephew bought a 520C 2014 model and first time at Toledo with it in rough water it when he gets off the water with it he is wiping it down and on the passenger side notices his gel-coat is cracked really bad, he calls ranger and they agree to fix it. He takes it to them and they repair it and looks great you cannot tell the next time to Toledo it does it again and once again takes it to Ranger they do a more extensive repair with some sort of beefing up in the area of concern. He gets the boat back after two trips of 9+ hours of driving one way the next trip to Toledo you got it cracked again, this time Ranger tells him that they are going to replace the hull, which of course he is excited about but 3 trips to Flippin, 8 months of paying for a boat later he gets the new boat and it looks awesome and pretty much thinks his problems are over but wait, he goes back to Toledo for a federation qualifier 3 weeks ago makes a 10 mile run in 3 footers taking it easy (told me he was running less than 20mph) trying to take care of the new boat and low and behold more cracks this time in the transom area, by the passenger console like the other did and also at the drink cooler area too, worse than the original time.
    Was hoping to help him get some info on rough water issues with running big lakes like Toledo Bend with stress cracks in the gel coat on the transom end on 520's if he is just snake bit or if there is an issue. I would like to point out that he only fishes big lakes a couple times a year and this boat is garage kept and maintained.
    He is really bummed, these boats are soo freaking expensive and now he potentially has another lemon. Myself being a Ranger fanboy I hate hearing this and when I talk to people about this they tell me that Rangers are not made like they used to and I realize this was 14 pre-Morris and I am not a big fan of Morris owning Ranger to think that he would take a successful boat company and tear it apart by lowering the quality just makes zero sense.
    Any feedback is appreciated, thanks.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
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  2. Member Capw's Avatar
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    #2
    Simple fix....stop going to Toledo. Sorry, had to. I think he may not know how to drive in 3 footers. Maybe he believes he does but sounds like he’s pounding the boat.
    2017 Ranger Z520c "Blackout Edition"
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    -Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour-

  3. Banned
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    #3
    Wow I had a 2012 521 and after 6 years of Great Lakes not a mark....ditto with many other people I know.....seems really weird....is he jumping waves?

    As an aside I own a new 520 L it is my 7th Ranger since about 1998 and by far the best built one...

  4. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #4
    He has fished federation for years, he used to live in Texas and fished many big lakes and he has owned several boats so I think he understands how to run a boat and I explained in my post the last time he was doing less than 20mph when this last issue came up, in fact he said a Phoenix come flying by him. Look trying to see if anyone can help us make sense of what to me is not the Ranger norm and see if by some chance he has gotten two lemons in a row or if someone else is experiencing the same thing so that when he goes back to Ranger this time he would have a sense of this is just happening to me or others have an issue. It seems strange to me even if he were jumping waves that everyone that fishes tournaments on these big lakes you have to travel and that is the reason you buy a Ranger or equivalent.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
    Love my Ranger Boats

  5. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #5
    I think if Ranger thought he was abusing the boat which he is not they would have never fixed it twice (second hand boat) then actually replaced it with a new one when he was not the original buyer.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
    Love my Ranger Boats

  6. Ranger Boats Moderator jc2bg's Avatar
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    #6
    If your goal [OP] is to see whether Rangers hold up in big waves, they do. And no, the build quality of their hulls isn’t deteriorating. The 5 Rangers I’ve owned in the last 10 years, including a 2014 Z520c, all have been extensively used on Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair. These lakes get extremely rough, both from weather and very large boat wakes, and I’ve had not a single stress crack in any of my Ranger hulls. All of this is not to negate your friend’s experience. But his experience, however it may have happened and whatever may have caused it, is not the norm. The Z520 is a super solid ride, easily capable of going shore to shore on Erie [at 20 mph or less] for years without being any worse for wear. If you go over 20 in the really big stuff, however, it’s going to be a rough ride, and damage could result. Thankfully, on Erie there’s hardly any floating or submerged wood to deal with. But 3-foot waves are fairly average up here.

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    #7
    I fish/live on Toledo Bend my current boat is 2016 Z521c and its rock solid no cracks.

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    #8
    I know several guys here in Ontario running larger rangers and we have some big water with very little issues. Odd he is having these issues. I wish I had more for you, but I had a buddy that beat the piss out of his 519vs years back. He ended up blowing the stringers and ranger replaced the hull but I have to say I never noticed any cracks or gel issues. This was the reason I ended up with ranger. If it held up to the abuse my buddy put her through my ranger would last for ever. Hope he gets her sorted out.

  9. Member dean c's Avatar
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    #9
    If that thing is cracking everytime the dude goes out, something isn't right..and its either the driving or the rig..If hes driving it hard enough to crack it everytime he goes out...Im surprised he can still walk...Sounds to me like hes got some issue with that hull...Thousands of Rangers (including mine) running Toledo/Rayburn/great lakes...they ain't cracked or at least not to the level of the OP's nephew. I'd be continuing to let Ranger know of the issues. 20 mph in rough water shouldn't be cracking any quality bass boat.
    Ranger Z521c
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  10. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #10
    Thanks for the reply's. Let me say guys that my nephew and his dad and I between us have owned many Rangers for the last 30 years from the old 362, 481, 195vs, 520, R series can't remember which one and I have a 119C now that I love other than that black plastic on the sides that turns white and we are fans and have been but this has been unbelievable again originally since he had purchased it used thought maybe just got a Lemon so when he got the new one he was excited to say the least thinking this may be the last boat I ever own.
    His driving is not the issue, your body cannot take what a normal Ranger could take and we are talking most of the time the boat is not in rough water only a few times a year for tournaments.
    Thanks again and this is not the Ranger has gone to shit post this is a long time fan wondering what the heck is happening.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
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    Love my Ranger Boats

  11. Member
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    #11
    My last boat was a 2000 520 dual console and I've had that boat all over the State of Michigan. A lot of the time was spent on Saginaw Bay, which is usually rough all the time. Just in 1 tournament on Saginaw Bay my partner and I had to make a long run to our fish and the wind was blowing. We could only do about 13mph and it took us 3 hours to get to our spot. The boat took a beating on that day, as it did many other days on St. Clair, Saginaw Bay, Thunder Bay, all over the State for 16 years.

    I sold the boat in 2016 after all those years of tournament fishing. The boat only had a small crack on the top cap on the starboard side between the shifter and windshield. The crack was not structural by any means, just in the clear coat like a spider crack, but this was 1 line about 3" long over the top cap. That was it!!!! And that boat got beat all over the State. The boat is still on the water as of today...

    From what you are telling us, it would appear to me that there is something just not right with your nephew's hull, even though it's a new hull. Very strange indeed. I would keep in touch with Ranger. Perhaps after they fix the hull a third time, they could send someone from the factory to take a ride in it with your nephew to see if it fails again. It's just very strange to see 1 hull, let alone 2 hulls, have this much damage in such a short time.

    Good luck!!!

    M

  12. Member Ranger519VS's Avatar
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    #12
    There is one big difference between the great lakes and Toledo Bend and that is trees, lots of them. And yes, I know that several years back there was a big program to clear standing trees and deadheads out of the boating lanes on Toledo but the fact is that it is still full of trees. You can run as slow as you want in 3 footers but if the boat is coming down on top of deadheads and stumps in the trough of those 3 footers its not going to be good.
    Butch Derickson
    2011 Z521 w/250 hp SHO
    Traverse City, Michigan

  13. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MMyles View Post
    My last boat was a 2000 520 dual console and I've had that boat all over the State of Michigan. A lot of the time was spent on Saginaw Bay, which is usually rough all the time. Just in 1 tournament on Saginaw Bay my partner and I had to make a long run to our fish and the wind was blowing. We could only do about 13mph and it took us 3 hours to get to our spot. The boat took a beating on that day, as it did many other days on St. Clair, Saginaw Bay, Thunder Bay, all over the State for 16 years.

    I sold the boat in 2016 after all those years of tournament fishing. The boat only had a small crack on the top cap on the starboard side between the shifter and windshield. The crack was not structural by any means, just in the clear coat like a spider crack, but this was 1 line about 3" long over the top cap. That was it!!!! And that boat got beat all over the State. The boat is still on the water as of today...

    From what you are telling us, it would appear to me that there is something just not right with your nephew's hull, even though it's a new hull. Very strange indeed. I would keep in touch with Ranger. Perhaps after they fix the hull a third time, they could send someone from the factory to take a ride in it with your nephew to see if it fails again. It's just very strange to see 1 hull, let alone 2 hulls, have this much damage in such a short time.

    Good luck!!!

    M
    I know it is, thank you sir!
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
    Love my Ranger Boats

  14. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger519VS View Post
    There is one big difference between the great lakes and Toledo Bend and that is trees, lots of them. And yes, I know that several years back there was a big program to clear standing trees and deadheads out of the boating lanes on Toledo but the fact is that it is still full of trees. You can run as slow as you want in 3 footers but if the boat is coming down on top of deadheads and stumps in the trough of those 3 footers its not going to be good.
    Come on man, the problem is with the cap not the hull, the hull is fine and he would know if he hit a tree. He has run the Bend many times and although it could happen to anyone he runs the boat lanes and really takes care of his boat this is a boat building issue that is out of the norm for Ranger in the past but this is not someone trying to get something for nothing, this is a man that just wants a quality boat to fish tournaments out of and right now he does not have one.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
    Love my Ranger Boats

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    #15
    Something wrong, let Ranger or your dealer take care of it. Not the norm.

  16. Member
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    #16
    I was on Hartwell the last day of the Classic in 17. Roughest water I’ve ever been on anywhere. 40mph sustained winds right up the gut. I broke my trolling motor, not completely off of the boat, but broke it nonetheless. I’m not claiming to be the best driver, but we hit some waves HARD. Even going slow didn’t help. That lake is like a wave pool with all the stem walls everywhere. Giant waves from any direction all at the same time. Anyway, despite that hellish ride, after which I was surprised I wasn’t pissing blood, my Ranger showed no signs of damage.

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    #17
    I have seen this happen very few times on Ky Lake and it gets as rough as an ocean when pulling 300,000 and going against a 35 mph wind. If you run them on top of these rollers you are asking for cracks.

  18. AR Bass Club/AR Fishing Moderator GhostComanche's Avatar
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    #18
    Quote Originally Posted by RangerRodney View Post
    I have seen this happen very few times on Ky Lake and it gets as rough as an ocean when pulling 300,000 and going against a 35 mph wind. If you run them on top of these rollers you are asking for cracks.
    Yes Indeed.....................RR


    "Never argue with an idiot; He will beat you to death with stupidity"

  19. Member 2015Ranger's Avatar
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    #19
    *Update* His boat just now at Ranger, he tried to get them to let him trade into a newer model threw a dealer or a different model like the 521, they said No they are going to fix the cracking in the gel coat one last time and they are done with it no more fixing it from Ranger. Mike Chrisenberry told him that fiberglass boats crack, all of them do. I call BS on this if all of the 80K boats cracked like this model they would be out of business. As a long time Ranger fan riding in my first one in 1987 this is disappointing we are talking about a rig that spent more time at Ranger than being used with him personally making 4 trips to Arkansas on his dime. I guess Vexus will be next.
    1990 481V
    2005 195VS Intracoastal (Redfish Edition)
    2015 119C
    Love my Ranger Boats

  20. Member
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    #20
    Sorry to hear about your issues but me and my buddy have been running Rangers for the last 30+ years all over the place. We have fished KY and St Clair in some
    really nasty weather with waves up to 5-6 feet and we have not experienced any gelcoat cracking. Rangers are still as good as they ever were as I have a '17 520c
    and he has a Icon 521 and they have never been back to the shop with any kind of issue. Good luck.

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