Tom Scott's
"The New Trailer Sailor's
Guide to the Precision 18"

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Tom Scott's book. "The New Trailer Sailor's Guide to the Precision 18" is now available for download. Originally offered by Tom as a self published work, he has made it available for all for free.

Tom explains:

"The Book" came about simply because many sailors on the Trailersailor Forum pushed me into writing it. I am an active participant on the forum, and the scattering of information that I offered was typically in response to very specific questions. The challenge for me was that the questions asked often led to other questions, which led to further explanations and related questions - many of which went unasked or unexplained. The format of the forum was such that while I could often offer complete answers, the explanations often weren't set in sufficient context to fully help the newer sailors. (...I've learned that the "language" of sailing is often a barrier to communicating with new sailors.)

Additionally, I began to grow weary of answering the same questions over and over again. This certainly wasn't the fault of the person asking their question for the first time, but I sometimes grew tired of posting the same info repeatedly. So, I had the building external pressure to put my thoughts in book form, and added to that was my final motivator: I had this idea that a book written to target new owners of the Precision 18 might answer the majority of the questions people kept asking. Because the larger Precisions are all designed and built with a common philosophy and consistent construction techniques, an unexpected consequence was that owners with other Precision models also found "The Book" quite helpful.

In its original form, the book was self-published and produced with the help of Jack Mayer and his son Jason. I met Jack on the Precision forum, and he sails a P-165. Jack and I have managed to cruise together for the past few years in November, and become good friends. Together, "Team Mayer" turned "The Book" into something that could be held, read, taken aboard the boat, and finally available to those who wanted it. I pre-sold copies, and set the price at $ 29.85 so as to ensure that I would at least break-even based on the numbers of sailors who were interested. (...I promised my wife I would not loose money!)

As "The Book" hit the streets, demand went up beyond what I'd ever imagined - and soon I was turning people away. The CD idea came up, and again the sailors on the forum made it happen. Mark Cramer produced "The Book" in CD form, and the price was able to be dropped to a more reasonable $9.85. (...After a while, my wife asked me to round off the price to an even $10.00 to make her trips to the bank easier.)

As it turned out, I still answer the same questions regularly on the forum, and "The Book" has simply helped many new sailors ask even more questions. But that's all good! With few exceptions, overall feedback on "The Book" has been positive - and its acceptance by the relatively small Precision sailing community has been strong. "The Book" was not produced to fill my bank account with extra dollars - it was written to meet a perceived demand and perhaps save me some repetitive posting on the forum. It definitely succeeded in filling a niche - and I've pretty much resigned myself to answering the same questions. ;-)

Anyway, I have no burning desire to remain in the "book distribution business", and I'm happy to offer you "The Book" in electronic form for posting on the website. It is my desire that "The Book" be made available to those Precision owners who would appreciate it for free. My costs of production have been fully recouped, and any cost associated with obtaining it will probably keep somebody from reading it. So, "FREE" seem to be an appropriate price.

A little bit about Tom:

...I am a retired Air Force Officer who lives in Punta Gorda, Florida with my wife Wendy, and daughter Cindy. I have owned my 1986 Precision 18, "Alert", for 20 years - and I've sailed in a variety of locations around the country as my Air Force career caused us to move frequently. Much of the early part of my career was spent living in a SAC alert facility, ready to run out to my KC-135 and get airborne - before Soviet missiles could wipe us out - and rendezvous with and refuel B-52's that were prepared to make the Soviets really sorry they had ever decided to mess with us.

For the first ten years of my career, one week out of every three was spent living at the "Alert facility". So, when I bought my P-18, I named it "Alert". The hope was that when "the boss" called (.. usually looking for somebody to go on alert), my wife could tell him I was already out on "Alert" (sailing) he would call somebody else. ;-) Today, "Alert" stays on a boat lift behind my house, ready to go sailing at a moments notice. The name still fits, and the boat still meets all my needs!

Download Tom Scott's book in .PDF format. (5MB)
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