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Lebanon county man's hobby has national impact - abc27 WHTM

Lebanon county man's hobby has national impact

Updated: Nov 29, 2012 7:03 PM EST
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Dave Heisey calls it "the dungeon." The basement of his Myerstown home, filled with hundreds of custom made model cars. And there are more on the way.

"I like to be creative, said Heisey. "I like to put the car together and put it on display and let people enjoy it."

And for the 61-year-old model car builder, the instructions that come with the car kits are only suggestions.

Dave Heisey, Custom Model Car Builder..."I have my wheels turning. And I'm looking at it and trying to figure out, you know, how I want to make the car, even though the instructions will tell you one particular way to build the car."

It's a hobby he began as a youngster when, with his brother, he assembled a snap-together model station wagon. That same model still sits proudly among his wall- to- wall collection of sports cars and hot rods.

"I could never afford the real car, said Heisey. "But what I could do was build a replica of that car. And then I have a piece of that car. A piece of that history." He calls it a poor man's fantasy.

Heisey's expertise is well known in the world of custom model cars. His designs draw celebrity endorsements and national distribution by model car manufacturers.

"You see this car in this particular form, you realize how much work goes into this car, " he said.

Demand for his cars has turned his hobby into a second job for the full-time maintenance technician at nearby Bayer Corporation, but you won't hear him complaining.

"I'm really blessed that I am able to do this. It's really a fun thing for me," he said. " And it's very relaxing."

And when not cutting, gluing or painting his latest creation, Heisey is busy organizing shows and clinics where custom model car talk is a universal language.

Heisey laughed as he said, "I guess I'm the kid that never grew up."

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