Note: This feature is in the June TT&C 2017 issue.
Peyton and Ryan Hinkley’s diorama started as a 3-by-3 display for a 4-H project.
Other stories in the June TT&C 2017 are:
• Need for MODEL BARGE spurs a business
• Oro Werke Toy Company, Popular with kids and collectors
• Dan Nethercott, Getting his hands and models 'Dirty'
• More 2017 Custom-Built & Scratch Built projects
When Ryan Hinkley spends time in the basement of his Romney, Ind., home, he relives his working life—in miniature.
The Peterbilt trucks with cattle pots, grain trailers, flatbeds and livestock trailers, and other trucks in a 128-square-foot diorama replicate rigs he has driven since 1995 when he was a teenager. With a grain setup, sale barn and farm fields, it’s apparent that agriculture and trucking are interconnected and equally important to Ryan.
Livestock hauler at heart
Ryan was 20 years old when he moved to the Lafayette, Ind., area to begin taking classes at Purdue University in 1995 and also started working with a farmer who raised corn and hogs.
“They threw me in a truck with a feed trailer and said, ‘Learn,’ and I did,” Ryan recalls. “Then I started hauling his market hogs to a packer in Indiana, three loads a week. When I was 24, I got my CDL (commercial driver’s license).”
That started Ryan’s livestock trucking career, a job he really enjoyed.
“It’s a challenge, and I enjoyed the challenge,” he explains, as he was responsible for loading and transporting animals safely. “I miss hauling livestock, but I don’t miss being gone from home a lot.”
Ryan gave up livestock hauling about eight years ago so he could be home every day. He started working for a farmer and hauls grain, maintains equipment and helps with planting and harvest, but he still lives vicariously on the road through his collection of about 100 trucks and the diorama that started as a 4-H project.
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