Model Makers

Estelle Sidler

The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship Presents     The 1/16 scale all aluminum Corsair shown above is a very ambitious model. The builder, Young C. Park of Hawaii is a recently retired dentist who put his skills in working with his hands and in forming metal to a […]

The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional
Craftsmanship Presents


1/16 scale all aluminum Corsair shown
above is a very ambitious model.
builder, Young C. Park of Hawaii is a
recently retired dentist who put
skills in working with his hands and in
forming metal to a new use.


This section
includes automobile, ship, locomotive,

aircraft, and other models of mechanical
devices other than engines


Model Makers

Model making has been
employed over the years for the purposes
of both business and pleasure. Models
are often built to demonstrate the
practicality of a concept before
building the full-size version,
particularly before computer modeling
was available. For example, before drawn
plans were commonly used, naval
architects would build a model of a
wooden ship for the shipyard to use so
the craftsmen to copy in full size.
Traveling salesmen who could not carry a
line of stoves, guns or harnesses with
them would often carry a case of small
sales models to show the customer.
Patent models were often submitted to
prove a concept for the purposes of
patents. The models most of us are
familiar with, however, are the ones
made for fun. There is a real appeal to
seeing a scaled-down version of
something big. Toy trains, cars and
airplanes have been popular for as long
as the real objects have existed. Some
model makers take their skills past the
crude representations of mere toys to
create a true miniature version of the
real object. The smaller and more
detailed the model, the more we marvel.
We often feel like giants viewing these
tiny models. Included in this section is
the work of some of the best model
makers around.

“Model Makers”
in this museum are differentiated from
“Model Engineers” in that the
models shown here are made primarily to
represent very accurately what something
looks like. The motors in these models
don’t actually function. Model
Engineers, on the other hand are usually
concerned with modeling the function of
a device like a steam or gas engine.
More often than not, these models are
also very close to representing the real
thing, but the overriding goal at the
beginning of the project is to represent
a function. Model engineers and model
makers share many of the same skills and
often build models that fall in to both
categories, but we have separated them
into two different rooms in this museum
to highlight the two disciplines.

There is an organization
for model makers called the Association of Professional Model Makers (APMM).
Their web site can be found at
been around since 1993 and currently have nearly 800 members around the world
(2009). It is a non-profit organization that holds conferences biennially across
the country.

for larger image)

(Click name to visit page on
this craftsman)

(Click for larger

Dioramas that capture a
moment in time and a book on how to create them

Miniature show cars built by anonymous craftsmen from the auto
industry’s past

High quality paper airplanes

Builder of vintage European
and American horse-drawn carriages

Museum quality pedal cars that are too good for kids

Highly detailed wooden ship models based on thorough research

Gold plated trophy cars for the world’s best drivers

Super detailed 1/87 scale truck models

Finely detailed brass and
wood aircraft and automotive models

Super-detailed giant scale
Spitfire and Mustang models

Industrial Archeologist and model maker who is “re-engineering the

Scale radio controlled ship models with the detail of museum

Dollhouses and miniature

Highly detailed traditional plank-on-frame wooden ship models

A legend in
prize-winning 1/25 car models

A superb
wooden ship model leads to a hobby of wood carving

Museum quality ship models

Miniature race cars from the past

A shop full of vintage machine tools in miniature

2002 Metalworking Craftsman of the Year

Scale cut-away aircraft models hand crafted from aluminum

Highly detailed 1/10 scale automobile models from Spain

A 1/20 scale cannon collection built over a span of 50 years in
Costa Rica

Miniature tools and tool
chests for collectors of dollhouse miniatures plus furniture and more

2013 Metalworking Craftsman of the Year

Custom aluminum aircraft
models built with an incredible level of detail

A lifetime of building model
firefighting apparatus that includes over 400 models and the imaginary
city of Luna Beach

A working 1/32 Manitowoc Crane model by a former employee of the company

Bringing an imaginary past
to life in 1/24 scale.

Miniature machine tools, boats and airplane models

Museum quality model
motorcycles from Spain

A history of the US Navy in
over 300 ship models in 1:600 scale

An entire fleet of 450 ships made from
match sticks and match boxes

2005 Metalworking Craftsman of the Year

Museum quality model cars and books on how to build them

1960’s American cars
expertly modeled in Switzerland

Award winning super-detailed 1/72 scale aircraft models from Poland


R/C Flyers:
To learn how
Dave Mathews built a very impressive 1/10 scale flying jet C-17 model see
. This project
required skills in many areas from engineering and computer drafting to
aerodynamics to airframe construction, all of which were done essentially by one
man in a relatively short time.


Submissions Welcomed

If you have additional
information on a project or builder
shown on this site that your would like
to contribute, please e-mail [email protected]
We also welcome new contributions.
Please see our page at
for a submission form and guidelines for
submitting descriptive copy and photos
for a new project.


This page is not currently sponsored.
learn how your company or organization
can sponsor a section in the
Craftsmanship Museum, please contact
[email protected]


Copyright 2019, The Joe
Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship. All rights reserved.
 No part of this web site, including the text, photos or illustrations, may be
reproduced or
transmitted in any other form or by any means (electronic,
photocopying, recording or otherwise)
for commercial use without the prior
written permission of The Joe Martin Foundation.
Reproduction or reuse for
educational and non-commercial purposes is permitted.

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