Kitset model 36 years in the making

SHARE

 

Good things take time, just ask Alexandra man Steve Hills.
Mr Hills, who is Central Otago Model Society secretary, has spent lockdown adding the finishing touches to his replica of RMS Lusitania.

Lusitania was a British ocean liner that was sunk on May 7, 1915, by a German U-boat, about 18km off the southern coast of Ireland, killing 1198 passengers and crew.
The model project was one Mr Hills had been meaning to get on to over the past three decades, after his wife Esmae gave the kitset to him 36 years ago.
But, due to the quality of the kit and other projects taking precedence, RMS Lusitania sat unfinished, collecting dust, until Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern declared a nationwide lockdown on March 26 in response to Covid-19.


To scale . . . A 234 tank is another one of Steve Hills’ finished projects.
PHOTO: SUPPLIED/STEVE HILLS

Mr Hills said the kit was difficult to work with, but the lockdown was the perfect opportunity to give it his undivided attention.
It initially featured cotton for the rigging, but because it attracted dust he ripped all that out and used fine fishing line instead.
‘‘Even now, we don’t use fishing line.
Now there’s better products out there,’’ he said.

Mr Hills was among the Central Otago Model Society members who were looking forward to hosting the South Island Model Championships, which had been scheduled to take place on March 28 and 29. However, the lockdown put a stop to that, along with the Hawea Hobby Show over Easter weekend. ‘‘We might get it done later in the year,’’ he said, of the South Island Championships. Instead, working on unfinished projects at home has been a great back up plan, and many unfinished creations are now finally taking shape.
It’s been a good time to get a few projects finished.
‘‘There’s a few other things I’ve been in the process of doing,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve got 10 other kits of other various stages of construction so I’m plodding along quietly.’’

– When lockdown is over the Central Otago Model Society will resume its regular meetings on the second Sunday of each month at Community House and the third Sunday of each month at the Scout Hall.