Titanic Replica on Display

By Dave Leval

June 22, 2013 Updated Jun 22, 2013 at 7:00 PM EDT

ST. CLAIR, Mich. (www.incnow.tv) – She has captured our imagination, even though she sank 101 years ago. She currently sits more than two miles below the surface of the North Atlantic Ocean, but now you can see the Titanic like you've never seen it before.

"It's about the celebration of what a phenomenal ship this way for it's time, one of the largest floating structures ever built by man, said Gary Kohs, builder.

That's what prompted Gary Kohs of St. Clair, Mich., to build his most impressive model. Kohs and a co-worker spent more than two year's putting together this 18 ft. replica of the Titanic.

It's unlike any other. That's because Titanic's builders, Harland and Wolff, contacted Kohs seven years ago to handle the project.

"Eighteen trips to Belfast, we were given access to every plan, every design, the designers' notebooks to make the appropriate changes,” he said.

The end result is a perfectly scaled down version of what Titanic looked like when she set sail from England on her doomed maiden voyage in 1912. Kohs and his is the only company certified by Titanic's builders for a project like this.

Kohs has duplicated everything, right down to the planks used on the different decks, to the nearly 3.5 million rivets used on Titanic.

It's so finely detailed, the model includes teak deck chairs, a telegraph machine, and eight miles of fiber optic lighting. Plus, the lifeboats are made of the same type of Swiss wood used on the original ones.

"It took us two months to make one life boat,” said Kohs.

The model is the centerpiece of "Titanic: The Building of an Icon" that is now on display at Fred Moore's Boathouse in St. Clair. Kohs helped organize it to recognize what a technological achievement Titanic represented at the time.

"It had the only indoor swimming pool on a ship at the time, two elevators onboard. It goes on and on and on,” he said.

However, the Titanic did not go on and on as she sank days into the voyage. But, Kohs tells us, don't blame the ship.

"Stupidity, greed, arrogance, and help from an iceberg sunk the ship,” he said.

However, Titanic sails again and this time, you see her in a new light. You can see Titanic on weekends through July 27. Tickets benefit a local foundation that manages more than $30 million in grant, scholarship and endowment funds. The Titanic model will travel all over the world after it leaves St. Clair.

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