A painted model of the Vasa in scale 1:10 gives the visitor an idea of how the ship might have looked as she sailed out.

The model was built by four model builders in the Maritime Museum. The work took 12,000 hours and the model was in place in the ship's hall when the museum opened almost 20 years ago. The model is adorned with over 500 sculptures.

To begin with, the only parts painted were the canon-gun openings with their lion masks and the Vasa coat of arms. But after considerable research we now know the principle of the original colour scheme, which has allowed a more precise interpretation of how the Vasa may have looked as she left port.

On the basis of this intensive research, visitors to the Vasa Museum, in the spring of 2008, were able to view the gradual clothing in colour of the model, as it was painted in accordance with the original plan.

The Vasa model, in full colourful glory, is on display in the museum's entrance hall. Detail images

The results of the research can be found in the slideshow to the right. More details of the painted model are also available in high-resolution images.