World-Class Woodworker Makes Models Big on Detail

By Forrest Saunders, KCRG-TV9

AMANA, Iowa — He’s built set models for major motion pictures and tiny models big on detail.

He’s Barclay Lawder, a world-class wood worker that lives in Amana.

In his retirement, Lawder has been making models of trains and tractors out of a wide variety of wood for years. More than 430 models to date.

What makes them unique? Lawder’s commitment to detail. Before making a model, he studies the blueprints of the trains and tractors. Lawder then draws each piece out on paper and cuts them from memory.

Models can take up to half a year to create.

“It’s my life. It’s what keeps me functioning. I’m not in very good health. Mentally, as long as I’m stable, which I am, I love this. It helps me keep going,” Lawder said.

Lawder sells a lot of the models he makes but displays others. You can check out some of his work at Woodfest in Amana, the weekend of the 22nd.

l Comments: (319) 368-8610; forrest.saunders@kcrg.com

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