caulking a strip planked boat

I have a 1973 40 foot wooden trawler.  She is wood strip mahogeny planks for Hull- about 1 1/2 inches wide. I want to fill in some seems as it takes at least 5 days to swell   Some people say tar, others say let it be and let it swell, others use wax.  Any ideas on the tar?


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  • Using tar sounds like something they have seen in “Pirates of the Caribbean”, very messy.

    Providing the gaps are not excessive it's batter to use a more temporary method of stopping.

    Those who suggest wax are probably thinking of something like Slick Seam compound.

    A cheaper alternative might be to just fill the cracks with bar soap rubbed into the crevices this will eventually just wash away.

    Or even tape over the cracks with masking tape, this will slow water intake sufficiently while the planks take up.

    Taking up, how a Wooden Boat Becomes Watertight.
    How to ensure that the Taking Up process doesn’t stress you out when you Launch your Wooden Boat when as the wood and caulking swell to make your b…
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