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  #1  
Old 12-29-2006
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Practical sailor mag.

I am looking for a first boat, and noticed the magazine "Practical sailor"
Has any one subscribed?
Decent rag?
I am looking for the ideal trailerable boat that can be pulled behind a chevy tahoe, and launched at most any inland lake.
Ability to sleep 4, and have room below in case the weather turns bad.
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Old 12-29-2006
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Practical Sailor is ok. I subscribed for a while. I really like Good Old Boat and I noticed there is a link on this site for a free sample issue. When I was learning to sail, I used the book, "Sailing for Dummies." It was great and I learned all I need to know to get the job done. I have never had a lesson.

I have a Starwind 223 but that sounds smaller than you might want. A Catalina 25 is trailerable and there are zillions out there. It's a great boat with a lot of support from other sailors--the newer the better.

What lake are you planning on sailing?
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Old 12-29-2006
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Practical Sailor ... takes longer to walk to the mailbox than to read ...
Good Old Boat ... read every word, best one out there ...
Lattitudes and Attitudes ... just look at the pictures then toss ...
Ocean Navigator ... thin, expensive, but a lot of substance ...
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Old 12-29-2006
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"Ocean Navigator ... thin, expensive, but a lot of substance ..."


Sounds like my second wife except..."a lot of substance"
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Old 12-29-2006
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Good Old Boat ---- I read it cover to cover
Practical Sailor --- has good articles about products
Latitude 38 ------ Good free mag, you can read the adventures of others
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Old 12-29-2006
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where to sail

I'm hoping we'll be sailing on Lake Kabetogema, Rainy lake, Lake Vermillion.
spending weekends on the water.
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Old 12-29-2006
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hellosailor has a spectacular aura about hellosailor has a spectacular aura about
"Ability to sleep 4, and have room below in case the weather turns bad."
Reminds me of the old joke about "How big is your sleeping bag?"

"Big enough for four skinny hippies or one big Irish cop."

When a boat ad or review says "Sleeps four" that means there are four more or less flat spaces, each big enough for a woman or teen. And how well anything trailerable will shelter you from bad weather, kinda depends on whether your need for shelter includes a real head compartment, or a bucket behind a curtain. And whether you can duck down and not stand up for two days straight.

What's the towing capacity on your Tahoe, as equipped? You start with that, then look for a boat and trailer combination that weigh at least 500 pounds less, because there will be "stuff" in the boat adding more weight.

Easy launching and towing mean less boat. More comfort or better performance means more boat (more keel, especially). One way to look at this is that no matter what first boat you buy, it will be the wrong one and in a year or two you'll want to buy something else. So, buying that first boat with an eye towards resale value (something popular, easy to resell, in good shape but not a silver-plater) and accepting up front that you probably will be reselling it, is also something worth considering.
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Old 12-29-2006
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Read everything you can and take everyone's opinions as somewhat biased attempts at clever analogies. Practical Sailor is somewhat unique in that they don't base their opinions based on how much their advertizers pay - they don't have advertizers so arguably they can be more objective but they do still have their biases too.
More importantly, take a safe boating class and make sure you understand how to manage a boat properly. Doing so will also help in any number of ways in deciding what kind of boat to buy.
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Old 12-29-2006
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In addition to the paper magazines...you might want to look at the on line:
http://www.trailersailor.com/

....seems like it might have a lot of whatr you are looking for!
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Old 12-29-2006
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Practical Sailor is aimed more at testing and recommending gear, bottom paints, anchors, etc. While it does have boat reviews, that is not the reason most people subscribe to it. I have subscribed for years and wouldn't be without it. Some issues have very little that interest me at that particular time and other issues I read cover to cover the day I get it. The good part is that by keeping back issues, if I suddenly have a need for something (autopilot, anchor, radio, binoculars, you name it) I can pull out that issue and read up on things. The guys do a very good job with it IMHO.

As for a trailer-sailor, I think there's even a magazine aimed directly at that market. Plus, do some internet searches and you should find a ton of info out there. All the big glossies cover that kind of boat every so often, too.
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