Intrigued by Polynesian folklore, biologist Thor Heyerdahl suspected that the South Sea islands had been settled by an ancient race from South America. According to legend, this migration was led by the mythical hero, Kon-Tiki. Heyerdahl’s theory was met by a storm of protest, since it was widely believed the islands had been populated from the Indonesia. One of the arguments was the lack of evidence that the Pre-Colombian Indians of South America had sea-going vessels capable of crossing the enormous expanse of ocean between their continent and Polynesia. Heyerdahl decided to prove his theory by duplicating the legendary voyage. He built a replica of an Indian balsa wood raft and set sail from Peru on April 28, 1947 with five other adventurers. After three months on the open sea, encountering raging storms, whales and sharks, they sighted land – the Polynesian island of Puka Puka.
Build your own Kon-Tiki just like the original raft!
Mantua’s kit is built using balsa logs tied with rope to form a water-tight platform. The top of the platform, which serves as the deck, is finished with woven balsa strips. A deck-house, built of basswood strips and covered with laser-cut wooden pieces to simulate a thatched roof, protects the crew from the elements. Kit also includes canvas window flaps and sail material, plus a pattern for the painted sail decoration. Clear plans and detailed photographic instructions assure a fascinating historically accurate model.
Length 23-1/4″ / Scale 1:18