Craftsmanship can best be described as a marriage between the hands and there is no better example of this than the aircraft models created by Young C. Park that can be viewed at the Internet Craftsmanship Museum or at the actual Craftsmanship Museum in Vista California (near San Diego). Park is a retired Dentist from Hawaii who has always had an interest in model aircraft. However and as a retiree, Park had plenty (and we mean plenty!) of time on his hands as his first detailed model of a F-4U-D Corsair took about 6000 hours and over 5 years to build! Park used the lessons he learned from creating the first model to create a second Corsair plus a P-51 Mustang.
Besides the amount of time, effort and craftsmanship that went into creating these models, what is also amazing about them is that Park used some of his old dentistry tools to cut the metal for them – somewhat of a tricky process as the they “cut like butter until it digs in and binds or grabs the metal.” However, the results of his work earned him the 2002 Metalworking Craftsman of the Year award from the Joe Martin Foundation:
Here is a close-up side view of the Corsair model’s cockpit control area:
Just look at the amount of detail and craftsmanship that went into creating the Corsair model’s engine:
Created on a 1/16th scale, the Mustang model reproduces every detail both inside and outside of the aircraft. Moreover, all the cockpit controls are connected to the appropriate functions on the engine and control surfaces – all of which actually work:
Here is a close-up shot of the ammunition belt threading into the open receiver of one of the Mustang model’s .50 caliber machine guns:
If you can’t make it to the actual museum in Vista California to see the aircraft and the other models on display, just visit the Internet Craftsmanship Museum. Also, feel free to make a donation or if you have an item that you handcrafted yourself or something that is just gathering dust on a shelf at home or sitting in a box up in the attic, I am sure the museum would love to hear about it.