I left readers at the end of my last posting with a cliffhanger: what did Shimojo san say in response to my question about building sabani with just glued seams? I was actually surprised when he responded that he thought modern glues were amazing, and that it might actually work. After sixty years of building boats he is not willing to try, mind you, but I thought his answer was very progressive.
A few moments later he said to me, "Before glues, do you know what we did when we could see daylight through a seam? We would put shark liver oil in the seam." He said that this oil was thin, but that spread on a seam it would stop small leaks. Fishermen also coated their boats inside and out with this oil three or four times a year if they wanted to preserve them. The boats turned black and Shimojo san told his own joke, calling the old sabani the well-known name "kurobune" or "black ships" (this is the common name for the ships of Commodore Perry's fleet that forced Japan in the 1860's to open its borders).
Cross cultural note: I read in an excellent true travel adventure story, Motoring with Mohammed, that in Yemen fishermen coated their boats with a mixture of shark liver oil and pureed dates. Shimojo san doesn't think it is possible to get shark liver oil today.
The last steps in finishing the soko included putting in the bamboo nails to supplement the huundu fastenings, and rounding the chine. And our order here is reversed from the old days: before glue Shimojo san would have put in the bamboo nails to hold things together so he could pound on the boat, chiseling for the huundu, and not have things move.