Note: This feature is in the May TT&C 2018 issue.
Jamie Larn is a national champion model truck kit builder from Lower Hutt, New Zealand.
In 2009, he returned to building model truck kits after he had given up the hobby at the age of 16, because, he says, “I discovered girls.” He made two cabs to see if he still enjoyed the hobby, and if he had retained the skill. The cabs will probably not become part of any finished models, but what he achieved with them set him on his way to being among the best modelers in New Zealand.
Jamie has only completed three truck models since he began building kit sets again, and is currently working on number four. Each model takes him approximately 14-18 months to make, as he works on them in his spare time at nights or during the weekends.
“I don’t persist if I am not in the mood for it,” he says, “because I know I won’t be happy with it.”
His sons, Toby, age 8, and Fraser, age 5, like watching their dad at work on his models. Jamie hopes that his sons will one day enjoy the hobby of model truck building as much as he does.
Knowledge from working on trucks as a diesel mechanic has helped Jamie with adding details to his models.
His favorite kit set brand is Italeri from Italy. In his workroom, he has shelves of Italeri kit sets in 1/24 scale awaiting his attention. There is also a 1/25 scale plastic Volvo tipper from the Finnish toymaker Emek that might provide parts for one of his future models, and other toy trucks earmarked for the same use.
“I have enough to keep me occupied until I’m 120,” he says.
Jamie’s particular interest is in trucks from the 1970-1980 era that were driven from Europe into Middle Eastern countries. He has yet to make any models of trucks familiar on New Zealand or Australian roads. To further help him with getting models to look accurate, he has thousands of truck photos he has taken since he was 10 years old. Even before that age, the interest was there. “I’ve had an interest in trucks since I was a very small boy,” he says.