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  Vintage Saturn IB model: custom or contractor?

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Author Topic:   Vintage Saturn IB model: custom or contractor?
robokeith1
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posted 08-03-2011 10:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robokeith1   Click Here to Email robokeith1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was wondering if anyone might help me find out some more information about what I have here.

It is an all metal model of the Apollo-Saturn IB. It stands about 17 inches tall. The base has an engraved plaque on it that reads "Saturn 1B by L.T. Kaminski".

I purchased this about 12 years ago from a woman who (claimed) that her father worked at/for Chrysler building the first stage for the IB and that he had told her he made it from scraps left over from the machining of the IB first stages.

I was wondering if anyone could help me corroborate this, if there was any way to discover if there was an engineer of this name involved at Chrysler or NASA at the time by that name, etc?

As you can see it is quite detailed and really lovely and I'm wondering if this is more than just lovely - is it historic? Should I be doing more with it than just sitting on my shelf/should it go to a better home?

robokeith1
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posted 08-03-2011 11:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robokeith1   Click Here to Email robokeith1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote




Jerry Brouillette
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posted 08-09-2011 10:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jerry Brouillette   Click Here to Email Jerry Brouillette     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Cool model! Looks like a vintage shop built display piece all right. Any luck on researching the builders name?

robokeith1
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posted 08-09-2011 10:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robokeith1   Click Here to Email robokeith1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for your reply - I was able to discover that Leonard T. Kaminski was a launch operations group supervisor for Chrysler (at the time of Apollo 1, that is — he’s mentioned in the Apollo 1 review board report) but beyond that I can find no mention of him.

It does jibe with the info I received when I bought the model though.

Gilbert
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posted 08-10-2011 05:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gilbert   Click Here to Email Gilbert     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is a very cool model.

Go4Launch
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From: Bethesda, MD
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posted 08-10-2011 08:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I visited with Len Kaminski about 10-15 years ago at his home on the Space Coast. A VERY nice guy! He was very good with metal fabricating and did indeed make such models. I'm pretty sure he's passed away, but another cS'er, JL of Retro Space Images, bought a Redstone and an Atlas from him that he'd made. All-metal and heavy!

I'm sure he's seen this post already or will soon -- he may have a bit more information for you -- but you do own a unique piece of Cape history.

dtemple
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posted 08-10-2011 11:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dtemple   Click Here to Email dtemple     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
So you are the guy who outbid me for that model. I'll never forget it!!

Jerry Brouillette
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posted 08-11-2011 08:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jerry Brouillette   Click Here to Email Jerry Brouillette     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like you got a keeper! Gotta love those turned aluminum engines.
Thanks for sharing the pictures too!

robokeith1
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posted 08-11-2011 10:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for robokeith1   Click Here to Email robokeith1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you all so much for the answers and comments and helpful information, both public and private. I really appreciate it!

It is a wonderful model, I need to take better pictures of it with my macro lens because although the paint is chipped slightly in spots (I got it that way), the photos really don't do it justice. Handling it is a great experience as well - the weight and the way the pieces fit together provide a very un-model like experience. It's more like fitting together pieces of an antique firearm or something.

It is so interesting that some of you visited with Mr. Kaminski. How did you get to know him/about him at the time?

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