The Ranieri Cayman 26 Sport Touring is the middle element of the Ranieri International RIB line that currently includes other three models: the Cayman 23, the 28 and the 31. The Sport Touring version includes all the models whose center console is spacious enough to accommodate a dressing/toilet room. So, boats that, compared with their sisters of the Sport line – the Ranieri Sport 18, 19, 21, 23 and 26 with compact console – or the Sport Diving range – the 23 and 26 reserved for a professional use – are designed for a more comfortable use, also suitable for less-experienced crews: having a toilet instead of bathing when natural needs come is, for example, an option that many yachtsmen might like.
The model we tested during the Mercury Days at Marina di Verbella in Sesto Calende, Italy, stood out for a particular Black-Kit guise, characterized by differently-coloured elements: white fiberglass with glossy metallic-black details, red upholstery, white floats with dark terminal and finishes. This is a very important choice for the Italian boatyard that, after many decades spent in manufacturing fiberglass open models, has successfully entered the world of RIBs for about 5 years. Faithful to the idea that in-house manufacturing is synonym with hihly reliable products, the boatyard carries out all its production steps, from the concept itself to the moulding phase, from woodwork to upholstery, within the same production site, with the exception of tube assembly, which is the only one outsourced process.
Ranieri Cayman 26 Sport Touring – Description
Livery plays a key role in the exterior design of this boat. It is no secret that black and red finishes contribute to give a sporty, highly performing look. Then, another immediately visibile element is the compact width of this model: just 2.80 metres for a boat with an overall length of 7.80 metres. Moreover, thanks to the size of floats – the diameter measure 60 cm – inner space is even sharper, far from any sense of tightness or narrowness on board.
The layout is the typical one of a center consolle, with two asymmetric passages leading to the fore sun pad. The whole flooring is made of fiberglass even if natural or synthetic teak versions are equally available.
As already mentioned, the steering console hosts an inner compartment, which can be equipped with a marine wc and a blackwater tank, whose presence is externally announced by two side opening portholes. This space is accessible from a beautiful, well-refined metallic-black hatch on which stand out a red tilting settee and a comfortable red backseat with a black logo reproducing the name of the model. Its shape recalls the cross-sectional element of a hull while its aggressive lines would look nice on the grille of an American sports car.
Basically, all the exterior lines of the Cayman 26 Sport Touring move on this duality: the perfectly round tubes and the straight lines of fiberglass elements. Sporty and voluminous in the Black-Kit version, bow fitting can accommodate an electric windlass. There is a lot of stowage space anywhere: a large counter-moulded locker is located underneath the fore pillows, another one is available in the stern and reserved for mooring accessories while two additional stowage compartments are accommodated inside the steering console.
The latter features very essential lines; however, it is fully-equipped and well-protected by a windshield incorporated into a stainless steel tubular frame which also functions as a double handrail. Of special note is, in the middle of the upper part of the windshield, a hatch whose shape is very similar to the cross-cutting section of the hull. In the model we tested, the absence of a multifunction display makes the environment a little bare but, on the contrary, equipment is complete and includes electric panel controls, four analog indicators on the upper part ( log, rev counter, engine temperature and fuel level). The innovative Mercury Active Trim provides instant, speed-based, effortless automatic trim adjustment for a better overall driving experience. There are even two cup holders, two cell phone holders and a pilot’s footrest.
The stand-up is the other vertical element of the cockpit. It serves the pilot with an upholstered backrest which contrasts the rest of upholstery – here, black prevails over red – while offering an additional support thanks to two rigid-rubber handles on each side.
The rear surface is the most convivial one: on the upper part, a metallic-black hatch, decorated with linear deep veins – which recall the above-mentioned logo printed on the fore backrest along with the opening in the windshield – hides a tap-equipped sink and an additional space which can function aa s counter or a surface where to install a grill.
A little lower is a backrest-equipped settee that, at least in our opinion, might need a couple of handles for a better use in rough sea. However, there are a lot of handrails and similar supports anywhere, which guarantees higher safety in navigation. This settee marks the beginning of the aft area, completed by a sofa on the starboard side and a double bathing platform with built-in boarding ladder. Dodgers protect this area and also host the upholstered arm- and head-rest of the sofa along with the roll bar base and the awning, all consisting of stainless steel tubes.
Both can be easily retracted to reduce height and therefore, with tubes deflated, allow for transportation even on a road trailer in full compliance with legislation. Between settees, a dinner table, a panel or a pillow can be installed in order to tranform this area into an additional sun pad for two adults.
In the stern of the Ranieri Cayman 26 Sport Touring stands out a Mercury Verado 250hp outboard – the most powerful option available for this model (the boatyard doesn’t recommend engines under 175 horsepower).
A fresh sunny autumn day frames our sea trial on Lake Maggiore. Paradoxically, these conditions are not good to understand the genuine seaworthiness of the hull (after all, testing something marine on a lake sounds like an oxymoron but, you know, meanings often transcend the etymology of the terms we use). Anyway, we exploit the perfectly smooth water surface and the total absence of wind to check both boat and engine’s performance.
While we’re going out the Ticino with the engine idling, as required by law, we familiarize ourselves with the steering console that proves to be comfortable enough, user-friendly and well-equipped. Everything is at our fingertips. Perhaps a few extra degrees could improve the verticality of analog indicators and therefore their reading but these details generally depend on driver’s biometrics: in other words, his height that, in our case, is within the national average ” 1.65 metre” range. We’re three passengers in total and the tank contains just 30 liters of fuel (overall capacity is 250 l). We have neither water nor heavy accessories on board. We choose to use the efficient Active Trim system to select the best trim adjustment for the Cayman 26.
Despite of a tight hull, the boat is very stable in navigation, also thanks to floats that constantly provide with considerable buoyancy. Even in the event of tight turns experienced at high speed, boat control is total. Equipped with lateral support strakes, the hull always works well. Sudden changes in direction or engine speed never compromise stability.
Although the outboard moves the barycenter towards the rear, even under sudden accelerations and with all passengers sitting abaft the steering console, the boat always maintains its horizontal position on the water.
The automatic trim adjustment control system is very helpful in this sense and minimizes nose-up. The use of trim remains essential, especially when speed increases and when the electronic throttle is totally pushed down: the use of Active Trim, in fact, results into a difference of 8 knots if compared with a normal navigation with no automatic trim adjustment. In other words, we can sail fast by consuming much less. For no long-experienced captains, electronic tools can certainly give a hand.
In terms of speed and fuel efficiency, the boat is absolutely surprising. You can see all details in the table below. Meanwhile, we can inform you that 11 knots were sufficient for us to get the boat to plane and reach a maximum speed of over 44 knots. Cruising speed, of course, ranges according to the engine speed. So, at 3,000 rpm, the boat achieves its best distance-fuel consumption ratio; at 4,500 rpm, the boat touches 35 knot with a consumption of 60 l/h.
The Ranieri International Cayman 26 Sport Touring is a boat with a strong character and very attractive design. Everyone can use her, from novices to long-experiencing RIB enthusiasts. Well-built and well-refined, she is the ideal companion to spend a day at sea without giving up comfort on a thin boat that is, however, primarily devoted to outdoor life.
Sea Trial- Performance
|rpm||Speed (kn)||Fuel consumption (l/h)||Fuel consumption (l/nm)|
|Economical cruising speed||3,000||21.70||24.00||1.11|
Ranieri Cayman 26 Sport Touring – Technical Specifications
|Overall length||7.80 m|
|Inner Length||7.50 m|
|Overall Width||2.80 m|
|Inner Width||1.59 m|
|Tube Diameter||0.60 m|
|Maximum Outboard Power||250 hp|
|Fresh Water Tank Capacity||60 l|
|Fuel Tank Capacity||210 l|
|Tube Material||Neoprene – Hypalon|
|Hull Material||triple-moulded fiberglass|