While having a tracker can make your hand-ranging more accurate (at times), putting someone on a range is just about one simple question:
What range of hole cards would my opponent take all the actions he's taken in this hand with?
So having stats on how your opponent has acted in the past helps, yes, but this is not necessary for putting someone on a range. Keep in mind that:
- The range you assign a villain will usually not be perfect
- All ranges (except for our own) are inherently uncertain
- The biggest key in getting better at hand-reading in terms of ranges is actually starting to think in terms of ranges
It doesn't really matter if your assumptions about how people play start off wrong, because experience and hand analysis will fix this. The biggest thing by far is to actually TRY to put people on a range of hands. A tight player opens UTG at 6m - what does he have? His range might look something like 77+/ATo+/A2s+/QJs+/KQo+. Again, this won't be perfect unless villain's range happens to be exactly that, but it's a good jumping off point, and informs us later in the hand.
Ranges can never widen throughout the course of the hand, because of conditional probability. This means that if preflop, villain can have hands A-Z, and based on his flop play he can have A-E, and based on his turn play he can have B-D, and on the river we think he could have A, B, E, or F then we see he must have B, because B is the only hand that makes sense because it's the only one he would play that way to the river. So ranges always stay the same size or narrow as a hand progresses.
(But there is always some non-zero chance of spew at any given time for most players. Just because an opponent shows up with some random hand we didn't expect doesn't mean we did anything wrong with our hand-reading.)
In terms of "materials" on hand-reading, you're going to have trouble with that. "How to Read Hands at No-Limit Hold'Em" is a decent read, but it's fairly combinatorics-based, which might not appeal to you. There's a decent article over at The Poker bank called "REM" (range, equity, maximize), that you may find helpful. But really getting better at hand-reading is all about jumping in, doing your best, seeing where you're wrong, tweaking your assumptions, and repeating. Hand analysis (HA) can help a lot, since it hones your skill in a non-stressful, off-table environment. Check out the HA threads here on CC and start reading responses. Feel free to make your own threads, and comment on other people's hands, but don't be discouraged if people disagree with you. If someone says something as if it's a given, feel free to ask them to clarify why they think what they said. A lot of what people write in HA seems obvious to them, so they don't always do the best job of being explicit about their thought process. But most people can be coaxed into an explanation from time to time.