A Day in Nördlingen / Ein Tag in Nördlingen, by David Broda
Past Layouts | Ältere Anlagen
First Train | Der erste Zug:
Here a video I found on YouTube of the Märklin 2953 set I received as a child.
The Early Years | Kindheitsanlagen:
The following images are from some of my earliest layouts. In the beginning scenery was still rudimentary, but we had fun with it. That's my brother at the controls. Note trees made of pine cones, and mountains made of sheets. Bridges were building blocks. We always had real live catenary though.
Diese Bilder sind von meinen ersten Anlagen. Landschaftsgestaltung war sehr einfach mit Tannenzapfen als Bäume und Bettlaken für Berge. Brücken waren aus holz Bausteinen. Oberleitung hatten wir von Anfang an.
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Adolescence | Jugend:
Later layouts were a bit more involved, but still the same basic format, 4' x 8' with some with a 4' x 4' or something elsebolted on. Layouts were set up in the Fall so we could play in the Winter.
Anlagen wurden etwas komplizierter, aber immer noch das selbe Format, ca 2.5m x 1.5m, manchmal mit noch einem drangenagelten Brett. Anlage wurde im Herbst aufgebaut damit wir im Winter spielen konnten. Berge aus gefärbten Kleisterpapier, wie ich es später auch gemacht habe.
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2000 - 2001: Trackplan | Anlagenplan
It had been about 22 years since I last had a train layout (I hesitate to call it a "model" railroad), and it's something I've missed over the years. It was always something my father set up with us (mostly my brother and I) around Thanksgiving, and kept up through the Winter. The way it worked was that we kids just wanted to play and he did the electrical work, something he claims to have enjoyed a great deal. I know he took pride in his wiring under the table and the "stellpult."
Since the birth of Sofia in 1997, Hope and I have gone to the Central New York Train Fair and it's rekindled that fascination. Even though the fair is almost exclusively American in its scope, and I grew up with Märklin it was still exciting to view the modules and get some ideas. This Spring when we were in Germany introducing Sofia to the relatives I stocked up on new "c-track" to replace the track it wouldn't have made sense to divide with my brother (Yup, he got ALL the m-track, catenary..., though I got the bridges. Hah!). I also got some freight cars (those where his), as well as treating myself to some other things like a new V200. Also sent my old BR 103 off for repair after mangling the body beyond repair. Ebay also helped with adding to the rolling stock, as did the Märklin Mailing List with general technical help... and resources.
After a few months of laying something out on the attic carpet for a few days..., I finally cleared out a corner of the basement, and with Hope's blessing framed a 4' x 8' table with a 3' x 4' appendage sticking out. This was my limit. No going around the water heater, through a partition, moving the chest freezer... That was it, which was just as well. No sense in chewing off more than I could on the first try. Sofia was a tremendous help setting up the table and later making the scenery.
As interested as I am in new technology, running my trains in digital mode, despite all the bells and whistles was not something I was really interested in, so I stuck with analog. It's what I know, and by setting up "blocks," using the catenary and having three transformers I can run 2 trains on the loop (1 catenary, 1 studs), and have fun in the switching yard.
Scenery was kept deliberately simple, falling back on the fingerpainting we did as kids on flattened out paper bags, but taking it to the next level as "pastepapers," a historical bookbinding way of decorating paper. That allowed me to get some nice effects at a very low cost, and involve the family. Hope made all the papers with Sofia, and the results are great. All structures including the European river barge are from Schreiber-Bogen, an old German firm specializing in paper models. That's what we had as kids, I remembered them, and working with paper in a detailed way I figured why not. They're also quite inexpensive and having relatives come and go provided free shipping. A week in Maine allowed me to construct about 30 of them. On a later trip to Germany I discovered the MZZ backgrounds and combined those with the Faller backgrounds.
2002 - 2003: Trackplan | Anlagenplan
After two years of living with the last layout, I discovered that I had run out of space for all my rolling stock, and that the layout, while enjoyable had real limitations. So, in one evening (3.5 hours) Hope and I cleared everything off, removed all the track and wiring, and scraped all the scenery off the tables so that we could begin anew.
Due to some reorganizations I was able to claim more space resulting in a layout which ran along the wall for about 20 feet (2 feet deep) incorporating the main station and turntable on a 3 x 4 appendage as well as a small freight yard all of which connected to a 4 x 8 foot table which had the main freight yard and a mainline loop with passing track. There was a 6 track terminal staging yard under the main station which provided lots of storage space.
I really enjoyed the terminal station as it gave me something to do, other than watch trains go in endless circles, however the distributed control panels and transformers (designed for use with more than one operator in mind) proved to be very tedious, almost as much as the flat circle around the 4 x 8 table. As a result, the harbor was never finished...
Scenery and structures were similar to the previous layout, except I had added the Faller Bonn station, a fire station, a mine head, a silo, and made a greater effort to try to make the landscaping look nice. It was still the same "pastepaper" ground cover, though I discovered through a MIBA article that teddybear fur makes a nice wheat field. Sofia enjoyed the layout as it allowed her to have me transport her livestock from one field to another. I also had a streetcar line running the length of the 20 foot table.
The move to a new house gave a perfect excuse for starting over.
Duisburg Hauptbahnhof Station:
We also threw countless 1DM coins into the coin-operated layout at the train station in Duisburg. Rolling stock and design have changed over the years, but not as much as one would think. It's Trix Express, but we always thought it was Märklin. Usually we played with it, with our grandfather, on the way to the track where the Rheingold and Rheinpfeil TEE's met on opposite sides of the same platform. This was in the 70's.
Die Anlage in der Bahnhofspassage in Duisburg hat etlich 1 DM Stücke verschlungen. Hat sich in den vielen Jahren kaum geändert. Sie ist Trix Express, aber für uns war sie immer Märklin. Oft haben wir damit gespielt als wir mit unserem Opa auf den Bahnsteig gingen um zu sehen wie sich die Rheingold und Rheinpfeil TEEs trafen. Das war in den 70ern.
Below a video of the layout above taken in November of 2002 when we made a family trip to Germany with lots of railfanning, including the Messe in Cologne.
Unten ein video der Analge oben aufgenommen im Novenber 2002 als wir eine Familienreise nach Deutschland machten. Auch dabei viel Eisenbahn und auch die Messe in Köln.
Me in the windows of a moving IC at Koblenz Hbf on my recent trip.
Ich im Fenster eines herausfahrenden IC am Koblenzer Hbf während einer meinen letzen Reisen.
Peter's & Hope' s Märklin Trains © 1998 -
Peter D. Verheyen
Last Modified: Saturday, 26-Dec-2015 12:30:00 EST
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