In the category of “some people have the damnedest hobbies,” John Asmussen of Germany and William Terra of Maine have certainly each found one that suits them.
Mr. Asmussen created a fascinating and comprehensive website, Bizmark & Tirpitz, the purpose of which is “to give the visitors a detailed and informative place on the Internet related to the history of the battleships of the Bismarck Class.” His “criteria of success:”
I want to make a website that I would like to find myself if I want information about Bismarck and Tirpitz. I hope to have many visitors who’ll find this website useful and informative. Whether you like a website like this or not, (the level of details, design etc) is more or less a matter of taste.
Four years in the making and a few more needed to “complete” the project, Mr. Terra built a 1:20 scale, 30′, navigating model of the World War II German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee. (Wikipedia entry) Per Bizmark & Tirpitz:
- The model is scratch built like a canoe using 2,54 – 10,16 cm (1 – 4 in) bass wood strips and then covered with fiberglass.
- Estimated weight 318 kg (700 lbs).
- The beam is 1,32 meter (52 in).
- The length is about 9,1 meter (30 foot).
- It can carry 2 persons.
- The model is powered by a 15 hp (11,2 kw) outboard engine under rear gun turret.
- It can sail 24 kilometer per hour (15 mph).
- Furthermore the model has a music system build in.
- While William Terra cruise the lakes of Maine he enjoys listening to Wagner.
- The Commander-in-Chief in the photographs is William Terra.
- William Terra would like to see more models build in this scale.
Pretty amazing projects by 2 very dedicated individuals. (understatement)