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Chrisper54 08-15-2012 02:37 AM

caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
I have the pleasure of working aboard a 77 foot wooden schooner. It appears that the sealing for the calking put in last spring is coming off. Does anyone have experience with this and a recommendation for a substance to top the oakem in a traditional wooden ship?

Please respond with experise that works


sea_hunter 08-15-2012 04:12 AM

Slick Seam

kd3pc 08-15-2012 07:50 AM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
the caulking needs to be done while the boat is dry....hauled out....

hammer in the oakem, and as the wood swells with water, things tighten up nicely...
putting other things in or on the oakem, except for red lead is asking for trouble as most will prevent anything from sticking to the planking.

If the planking is oily, you may need to "prime" the joint with and oil based paint,

best of luck.

peterchech 08-15-2012 12:43 PM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
Try they are pretty good with this kind of stuff

WanderingStar 08-15-2012 01:07 PM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
+1 for Woodenboat, though you'll get conflicting advice there. Slickseam is great, but for use below water. Above water use seam compound, try interlux.

captflood 08-15-2012 02:54 PM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
GREETINGS EARTHLINGS; -The old way was with White Lead and cotton string so any of the modern sealents that will addhear to the understrate and the wood is good beeing from Blighty I do not know what is available on your side of the pond . Lay six inches of the cauking then over-lab by three extend six then over lap again _-_-_-_-_-_ (I must spend more time finding out how to use this computer thingy ma bob) AS ALWAYS GO SAFE !

oysterman23 08-15-2012 03:45 PM

In the sixties here on the east coast three strand oakum or...cotton sealed more often than not with boatlife in tube seam compound was messy low paid work that actually required skill and one or two good teachers a long the way...Had to "feel" how much to twist the cotton and set it just enough with the caulking iron.....forgive me but red lead was old school then far outclassed by Boatlife Early Sikaflex or several other varieties...
If your cotton or oakum is all stringing out very likely it was not applied well or sealed properly to get someone experienced there to evaluate and guide the work.
Good luck

klem 08-15-2012 06:32 PM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
What boat are you working aboard?

The preferred method for all of the schooners that I used to work with was to use cotton first, then oakum. On the hull, putty was dyed and then put into the seams after that. On deck, we poured hot pitch into the seams and then scraped the excess when it had cooled.

If things are coming out, you either used something inappropriate, the boat is working, or the caulking was not driven down deep enough in the first place.

Chrisper54 08-16-2012 08:57 AM

Re: caulking hull planks on a Wooden Boat
Thank you all for your great suggestions - I will pass them on to the captain/owner.

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