Super-strong Stacer Ocean Ranger 679 with 225hp Honda a high performance package

Super-strong Stacer Ocean Ranger 679 with 225hp Honda a high performance package

Stacer didn’t try to hide the fact that their 679 Ocean Ranger was designed and built to attract the serious fisher, those seventeen standard rod holders being a real give-away.

We noted three holders on each wide side deck, five on the big bait board and six on the hard top. Interestingly, those last six dropped down for easy loading and retrieval, then locked upright. Even the fold-down two person cockpit lounge was in on the act, with a 120cm scale etched into the seat.

Sports Marine had presented this no-nonsense fishing machine with a hull-max. rated 225hp V6, 3471cc Honda fuel injected 4-stroke with VTEC, spinning a Solas 143/4 x 17” s.s. propeller, fed from a 215 underfloor fuel tank.

Walking around the 679 Ocean Ranger we took in the chum bucket mounted on the transom to port and opposite, a broad two-step fold down ladder with two grab rails.

Between the bow rails, a Stressfree winch sat in the anchor well while the foredeck provided a cross bollard and a long grab rail on either side of the cuddy hatch. A windscreen wiper was installed for the skipper.

With the 679 Ocean Ranger alongside a pontoon at North Haven we boarded and found the cockpit to be 1.92m long, 1.90m wide and 0.75m deep, giving over 3.5m2 of treadplate to fish from. The cockpit self drained into a sump, where a dedicated pump could clear water at a rate of around 80 litres per minute.

A 60 litre live bait tank, with toughened glass window, was built into the starboard stern quarter, acting also as a step for the lift-away transom door, thence to the fold-down ladder. Big, deep, full-length cockpit shelves provided ample storage space and had toe-room underneath.

One very distinctive feature of the 679 Ocean Ranger was its fold-down two-person rear lounge. The white seat really stood out against the rest of the interior, more so in that it was etched with the model descriptor along with that very handy measuring scale. Behind this were two batteries and an isolator switch.

Both helm seats included cushioned arm rests and a rear grab rail, sat on big dry-storage boxes. The fuel filler was located on the rear of the box under the skipper’s seat.

Footrests were provided, along with a glove box and grab rail for the passenger. A hatch set into the floor between the seats opened to reveal a big 100 litre kill tank.

A black and chrome Stacer sports wheel sat below the helm station fascia, on which was a Lowrance HDS9 Gen2 touchscreen fishfinder. Next to this were twin V3 digital Honda gauges

To the left of the wheel was the panel controlling the Stessfree winch while opposite, those for the Volvo Penta trim tabs. Set above the ‘screen were a Lowrance Link 5 VHF marine radio beside a Fusion MS-RA200 stereo system.

Featuring a curved, tinted, toughened glass ‘screen, the hardtop also had sliding tinted side windows and its roof used side channels to act also as grab rails and as mentioned earlier, held the rack of six Stacer “Reel Easy” fold-down rod holders.

We measured the cuddy to be 2m long, 1.92m wide and a maximum of 1.14m deep. Semi lined, it provided two bench seats with storage under, a wrap-around shelf and large, practical overhead hatch.

On clearing the basin at North Haven we headed to the south west into a reasonable chop and increased speed gradually.

As ever, the 225hp Honda V-TEC was a joy to use, its “boosted low speed torque (BLAST™) technology pushing the hull onto the plane in no time. That done, it’s “variable valve timing and lift electronic control (VTEC™) delivered a consistent surge of smooth power, right up to full revs.

As per Stacer’s claims, their EVO hull, with its sharp entry and 20° deadrise allowed us to punch into the seas with great assurance and later, run across and with the waves without a hint of being pushed off line. Fast turns produced a gentle heel-in.

In decidedly less than ideal conditions and with the engine “straight out of the box” we conducted our usual performance test, which produced the following data: 10 knots (19 kph) @ 2,500 rpm (13 lph); 21 knots (39 kph) @ 3,500 rpm (23 lph), 27 knots (39 kph) @ 4,500 rpm (42 lph) and at 5750 rpm, we reached 37 knots (69 kph) using 63 lph.

Over calmer seas, with more hours on the engine and if we’d had time to become familiar with the standard Volvo Penta electric vertical trim tabs (previously know as the “QL Boat Trim System”), no doubt the performance of this Stacer 679 Ocean Ranger would have been even more impressive.
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