Beyond The Pale
Join Date: Nov 2014
Thanked 29 Times in 23 Posts
Rep Power: 3
Re: water in the wood
Diatomite is _very_interesting stuff. I use several pounds of it in my Hot Tub Filter, followed by an Activated Carbon canister, and a UV Sterilizing Tube. The Tube is old, but there has been good progress in LED Replacements.
I'm one of the very few that doesn't worry if somebody accidentally pees in the Hot Tub.
Woodies should pipe up here, but as I understand it, wood needs _some_ moisture, somewhere around 7%. Too much- mold and mildew. Too little, embrittlement at the cellular level; the wood cells no longer want to stick together. It's due to the binding properties of the Polar Nature of Water Molecules...
As long as one understands that wood in boats gets wet, sometimes unintentionally, a few thousand years of experience shouldn't be ignored.
The water content of the wood when the Boat was constructed, should be maintained for longest life. This is almost always an unknown quantity, and an impossible goal to preserve. So... Caulk.
At one time, Caulking was a Full-Time Job. As the Wood heated and cooled, as it soaked and dried out, as the Wood worked against itself and gasped unexpectedly during storms, the need for Caulking became important.
There were, and are, all sorts of Caulking. The Classic kind is some kind of twine or rope, jammed with wax or tar or pitch, and driven in to seams with tools developed for the purpose.
"Between the Devil and the deep blue sea, and with no pitch to pay.", isn't a Religious sentiment. It was a sound observation on being ill-prepared.
Ships were once careened for repairs or maintenance. That is to say, they were driven on to a beach, so that work could be done at Low Tide, with the the boat to one side, and impatient water to the other, and the Payer and the Devil in between.
"Devil"= The Bilge. (Ciardi once had a lot to say on this derivation, but I can't find it just now.) More specifically, the seams between the lowest planking, and the Keelson.
"To Pay"= To work in; to continue a process. Still commonly used as in "To pay it forward." Nothing to do with salaries, and the original sense may be still seen as in "To pay a line".
This isn't much of a problem with smaller wood boats; they have better intrinsic rigidity. Yet caulking can still be important.
"I also discovered a concrete mix called quickcrete and there's a water sealant kind. I'm going to test it out and see how it goes."
No! All of these mixes are caustic. Bad Chemistry!
Although I can't in good faith recommend it, because I've never actually used it, the "West System" is highly regarded among some Woodies. It's a light density Epoxy that soaks into wood, and is compatible with Fiberglass mats and rovings if added stiffening is needed. There are competitors.
"Haha Erindipity, I am glad I am entertaining!!!"
You write well, with a naturally engaging manner. I wish that I wrote as well, once...
My Best to you;