DODGE CITY, Kan. (KSNW) – As a child, Eric Haselhorst spent summers on his grandparent’s farm. Over the years, he became fascinated with the machines he saw traveling through the Midwest every summer.
“It started right here. My granddad drove this truck 1971 GMC. I loved going out and sitting on the combine during harvest,” said Eric Haselhorst
It’s that love of Kansas heritage that led to a very unique way to keep the memories alive, but it’s not that simple. The replicas are exact 1/64 scale versions of the memories for the people that drove, hauled, or spent time around a Kansas wheat harvest.
“I get a couple of photos from them, I tell them what can be done, then I buy a die-cast model, strip it down and the get the paint code from the VIN on the real truck, so I match the paint,” Haselhorst said.
He keeps adding those precise details or changing parts until the memory comes to life to replicate a piece specific Kansas heritage.
“Each piece has a story. It is not like I’m making a toy. You can go buy that at Walmart or wherever you want. It is not just a model on the shelf. It’s a story right there.”
It’s been a love affair to make memories come to life, and it was never meant to become a business. But the more folks that saw his work, the more the orders kept pouring in from all over the country and beyond.
His website gives customers a look at his love for replicating and shows how models are made, detailing the progress step by step.
“But if I teach you how to make one, and 10 other people, then I have helped 10 people get what they want and that is really cool.”
Eric does have a day job, but his passion happens outside his regular job in what’s called the lab. His love affair with harvest and the memories created are what keeps him going.
“A lot of people, they are very attached to the land. Seems like they all have a memory of a specific vehicle they drove or spent some time in or very proud of. Now, they have a permanent piece and look at that and step back in time and they get to relive that experience over and over again. Especially, when it was a really good one.”
The experience he is passionate about sharing, one model at a time.
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