This episode is all about Caulking (or Corking, depending on your location). I (Leo) start by visiting Port Townsend, which has an unusual number of very skilled and proficient Corkers.
We briefly discuss the history of Caulking and we meet Brad from the Port Townsend Shipwright’s Co-op, who is putting together a crew to help us Caulk Tally Ho! Brad and Paul (Shipwrights Co-op) Jordan Bard (Bard Boatworks) join us for a Saturday and demonstrate the amazing skill and rhythm of a highly practiced Corking crew, getting over a third of the boat Caulked up in one day.
Huge thanks to these guys for getting involved and spending their free time helping us out! After that it is down to Pete (another very highly skilled Corker) and me (Leo) (a highly UNskilled Caulker) to finish the hull. Along the way we discuss the different traditional tools, methods and materials that are used for this fascinating and hypnotic process.
"Corking" seems to be common parlance in the US at least, but it would appear to me to be a mispronunciation. The work comes from Latin via old (14c) French, the original meaning being to fill or stop cracks with lime (calx <=> caulk). It's certainly possible, though, that boats built in Iberia may have used strips of cork-oak bark (cork as used for wine bottles), so the US form may have originated independently. - Gordon.
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