Category Archives: German Federal Railroad (DB)

Happiness comes 1:220: Marklin 88010

Photos: Marklin 88010 “2012 Insider Model” class 01 express locomotive of the DB.

Reaching back a few years (very few years 2012) to the Insider Model of 2012 is the 88010 a superlative locomotive not only for German railroad history but also mini-club history. On its release mini-club collectors for the first time received an important German express locomotive modeled in 1:220 with detailed running gear and working side rods of an advanced state of design. “How did they do it? How could they do it?” were at least two of the questions that swirled in the ‘Z’ community. But then something truly remarkable happened Marklin advanced these design skills to each of the steam locomotive class in subsequent years. But wait they simultaneously applied the same design skills and inspiration to the diesel and electric locomotive classes. Long time collectors of Marklin Z could not have anticipated the advancements to this rarified hobby, but here we are on the other side of what many of us thought was impossible. What a great and lovely time to be part of the “mini-club” Club!

As the models come closer to the prototypes those reasons for not going ‘Z’ become evermore present: reality modeled in Marklin Z achieved at the smallest scale without compromising the prototype. Sure it is charming and fun to collect larger scales that are modeled to move freely on a layout with all the functions you would expect, but trains of other scales as we go up in size require sensitivity to length and size in order to work flawlessly with the radius curves, turnouts and special features. Z scalers appreciate those concerns are mere fodder for this scale, as such we enjoy unprecedented freedom to explore large layouts that might include multiple towns modeled with accurately represented trains in the same space a larger scale might only include a few buildings with an oval layout maybe on a 4’x8′ board. Z is limitless and the potential to build and design a large layout is not out of reach of most railroaders even those living in a small apartment in Manhattan: 1 foot of track length equals 220 feet of prototypical track length, at 6 feet we are approaching a 1/4 mile. Add a complete loop and a radius we are close to a mile. But many ‘Z’ers I have met over the years don’t limit their layout dimensions to the traditional 4×8, they have no rules. Taking over a room in a house might be a man cave to some but for others it is peace of mind for many wives and partners, but Marklin mini-club is not limited to men only it is a hobby enjoyed by women as well. What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than reading a book on railroading, designing the ultimate layout, building a beautiful Archistories laser cut building, or cleaning and maintaining your layout and collection. The ultimate railroading experience is ‘Z’, this scale overtakes the senses as it has since 1972 and many of us ‘Z’ers are among the happiest people alive: cheers Marklin!

Siding: join the Insider Club with benefits that include the Marklin Magazin, Insider Magazine, free club car in the gauge of your choice and invitation to own Insider locos which often introduce new tooling!

 

Marklin Z: One of the Last Great Collectibles!

Photo: Insider Model 2012: 88010 – BR 001 for DB (no longer available)

Are we collecting or are we acquiring: that is the question. When Marklin Z comes into a collection a bit of railroad history is preserved and a commitment is made by this generation to future generations that hold that Marklin’s history and the greater history of railroading is worth preserving.

Photo: Special Imprint (SMI) 88820: “Swiss Cheese” class Am 4/4 pictured with type Hbis freight car also featuring “Swiss Cheese” paint scheme. (no longer available)

Marklin Z gauge is one of the last great collectibles, it will persevere well into the future, and what has been released thus far since 1972 are limited and rare. Rarity is well liked by collectors of all types, but collecting Marklin mini-club (Z) is truly unique from all other collectibles due to their leadership and innovation in z gauge. There are other companies some small and some large producing z gauge products but Marklin is linked to z gauge by the very fact they invented it in 1972, they continue that history today with innovations including true catenary operation through roof equipped pantographs on their electric locos, realistic working side rods on the steam engines, and numerous diesel loco types including the Russian Ludmillas.

Photo: Export Model for France 2003: 88063 – Reihe 232 TC (no longer available)

Many collected “toys” (only time this word will be used on this blog because railroading is serious business! I’m kidding its loads of fun too!!!) these days are secondary market items from long defunct and beloved companies such as Buddy L from the 20’s. It is exciting to dig around a find some rare item that has not been made for 80-100 years or more, but with Marklin anyone can jump in and start collecting from a company in business since 1859. Buy a mini-club loco today and within a year or two or even a few months it will be out of production and already a collectible. Keeping the condition of your new train pristine is part and parcel to collecting anything, but with Marklin this extends to keeping the box in good condition. Want to run a train on a layout simply select the railroad you want to model and keep the other fine locos and rolling stock on display, displaying is just as much fun as driving those trains.

Photo: Marklin Magazin Edition 88953: BR 74 with lettering and Prussian Blue paint scheme for Marklin Magazin (still in production). Note: 1st locomotive release for the “Marklin Magazin” editions.

For collectors Marklin Z new releases are limited and rare falling into several categories: MHI Releases, Special Imprinted Editions, Export Models, Insider Models, Museum Editions, Marklin Magazine Editions, and general releases. Marklin Handlers Initiative includes releases only available to dealers that subscribe to the MHI program, this subscription includes ordering everything Marklin releases, MHI’s are One Time Series. Export Models are limited to distribution in the given country the release represents thus Swiss Export Models are distributed to Swiss dealers in a One Time Series. Insider Models are available only to Insider Members who maintain year long membership in the insider Club for about $100/ year with many benefits. Museum Editions are car sets inspired by companies with ties to Goppingen, Germany the home of Marklin’s headquarters. Usually housed in a specially printed tin box museum editions include a freight car and sometimes a cast metal truck or van. Marklin Magazin Editions are distributed in the United States by Walthers, these One Time Series freight cars usually depict a new car type, they are always painted Prussian Blue with Marklin Magazin insignia, and sometimes the car designs are inspired by the magazine’s printing production including one car that included a load of reams of printing paper. General Releases are those cars and locos that are announced by Marklin and commonly distributed throughout the world, but aside from the perception of wide distribution these items are still very limited and rare with popular releases selling out fast. Of the categories so described Special Imprints and Export Models are the most difficult to collect with secondary market dealers being the only source for these with the exception of direct purchase from German dealers including those with listings on Ebay.

Photo: Marklin MHI release (2016) 88216: BR 212 (diesel) for DB AG (out of production: still available)

Photo: Marklin regular release (2013) 88998: BR 38 Era III (former Prussian P8) passenger loco with tub style tender (no longer available). Note: BR 38’s have been in the Marklin mini-club program for years including trainsets, but the 88998 was the first generation of this loco type with highly detailed side rods and running equipment. This is one of favorite mini-club locos, it is a real pleasure to watch pulling Prussian coaches its action on the rails is melodic.

Part of the fun of collecting Marklin Z is rarity, this singular aspect of this hobby is underscored by small productions of one time series in multiple categories: Marklin Z the readymade collectible!

 

Trains are Trains – Marklin Models of Trains are something different and greatly so!

Marklin 88855: BR 03 Express Locomotive of the DB

A subtle thought occurred to me the other day, I was thinking about my last post on Scandinavian snowplow locos of the SJ in Sweden while having a brief moment of reflection during work as a photographer of architecture and interior design. My Wife and I work together so moments of repose sometimes happen during brief interludes moving equipment from the shot just taken to the next.

Marklin 88063: Serie 232 TC of the SNCF

I am very impressed with the offerings of Marklin and their z gauge line in the last five years, the following is a brief post and interlude in the normal technical and historical postings thus far presented at ZTrainsWeekly. This post is dedicated to the type of collector I have met on many occasions hanging out in train stores across the country, train meets and clubs, those that have taken on collecting expensive tiny trains because holding them in their hands and marveling at their striking detail and charm make them happy.

Marklin 88833: Serie 150 Y of the SNCF

So what does a Z gauge railroad loco or rolling stock have in common with the prototype railroad equipment of a particular railroad. First they are in a scale of 1:220 so every 1 inch translates to 220 inches in prototypical scale thus accurately reduced by Marklin in length, height and width dimensions. Graphics and lettering are correctly rendered by Marklin fitting accurately in historic timeframe. Detailing of trucks and equipment appear to show few differences with the prototype. Working headlamps and running lights are sometimes designed into the model and for some vary little with the prototype. But if we start with the prototype and compare it to the Z railroad model of Marklin few similarities can exist including actual equipment operation those being sanders, air brakes, working engines and the like. I hope I haven’t lost the interest of my readers, I am close to making this posting worth while if you have been queried by those that have yet to be bitten by the railroading hobby.

Marklin 88134: BR 132 of the DR

The model can only be a version of the prototype, but an impression of the prototype is far better than real diesel model locos running on diesel fuel throughout your house killing your houseplants and annoying your wife or steam and arcing electric ones. The comparison between the prototype and the model resides in the idea that the prototype surfaces on the rails in front of us and embodies history, design and awe whereas the model railroad elicits its connection to the prototype but also triggers our imagination thus connecting us to the models in serious and creative ways. All model railroad collectors are connected in this way, we can study the history of the prototype and marvel at its representation as a model as something else thus collecting the miniature is our railroading connection not limited but expansive.

Marklin 88106: BR 05 of the DRG and Marklin 88075: Class J-2 of NYC

Models of trains and their prototypes were built side by side since railroads began in the 19th century, Marklin was the first to successfully manufacturer commercially available miniature trains. Cheers to Marklin and another 158 years of outstanding trains!

Marklin 88687 BR 101 Electric Loco: Simple Repair

A quick note concerning Marklin’s line of BR 101’s. I just received the older 88687 which is a member of the Bayer series of class 101’s, it arrived with one buffer off.  Sooner or later you might come across this and maybe the first inclination is to glue it back on, but please don’t! The original and brilliant design included a clip system without any glue entering the mix. The black part that holds the buffers works also as a clip to hold the LED’s in place, two prongs on the black buffer part engage with tiny holes in shell and wow its back together again. It is of course part of the natural occurrence with Z to have something come loose, but rarely if ever is this due to broken or defective parts so stay away from the glue unless the loco dropped to the concrete floor and cracked, in this case 5 minute epoxy is the way to go.

DB BR 44 Steam Locomotive: 044 665-8

After WW II the DB acquired 1242 class 44 steam locomotives of a total 1989 locomotives produced from 1926-1949. The attached photographs document the original DRG Class 44’s, a variant was produced for this class during the war, the class 44UK construction was limited and simplified and included but was not limited to the eliminating the smoke deflectors and cab side windows of the original class 44 as a matter of cutting costs. Latter in the 1950’s OBB gave the DB 9 locomotives and the DB gave SNCF 291 for war reparations. According to my calculations a total of 316 were scrapped or destroyed at war’s end. Originally designed for goods trains of 1200 long tons for the hilly Mittelgebirge region. In the late 50’s the DB converted 32 44’s to oil firing, these variants were reclassified as BR 043 for the DB. The class 44 3 cylinder steam locomotive proved its worth and continued in service with the DB until 1977. On October 26, 1977 the last steam locomotive for the DB made its last run: BR 043 903-4.

The operating number proceeded by ‘0’ indicates this photograph was made “on or after” Germany’s reclassification of locomotives in 1968. According to the documentation that came with these photographs this BR 044 665-8 was working on this day in Crailsheim, Baden-Wurttemberg.

Marklin 88973 with operating number 44 1374 (released 2012 – 2014):

Note: buffers painted with warning stripes!

Siding: Marklin has thus far released three Era III BR 44’s: 88971 (operating number 44 494), 88972 (MHI Release with operating number 44 100), and 88973 (operating number 44 1374).

Siding: many excellent Era III freight loads are available for this locomotive including the GI 11 boxcars depicted in these photographs. Marklin’s recent release of weathered GI 11’s can be found in the 10 car set (available individually from Walthers): 82559_1-10. These cars feature beautiful weathering!

Marklin 82559

 

DR Class 01 Steam Locomotive

The Class 01 Express Steam Locomotive awaits passengers one morning in the summer of 1968. The older design baggage car and “Thunderbox” coaches were still used at this time by the DR at reduced speeds, the 01 was capable of 80mph, this photograph carries an inscription that the locomotive operated at 60 km/hr (37mph) in the Hornbach region. This Ostdeutschland BR 01 is operating accordingly in East Germany, the photograph’s inscription records the location as Hornbach. Operating number plaque indicates this locomotive to be 01 527, it varies in appearance to the DB class 01’s with the appearance of a continuous cover for the dome which gives evidence that this was one of 35 locomotives rebuilt in 1962 by the Reichsbahn Repair shop in Meiningen, the rebuild included Witte smoke deflectors, new cab and boiler positioned higher on the frame of the locomotive. My research does not verify the disposition of this locomotive so presumably it was scrapped, but the class 01’s operated for the DR until 1982, their service displaced with the advent of the diesel ‘Ludmilla’ introduced in the 1970’s. Marklin has not produced the DR version of the class 01 in Z, but maybe it will be a further development of those so far offered for DB: 88010 (Insider) and 88011, we will wait to see if it is included in the ambitious plans at Marklin.

Siding: The Soviet built ‘Ludmilla’ diesel locomotive was introduced to the DR in the 1970’s thus eventually ending the long career of the class 01 locomotives. Marklin’s last version of the Ludmilla in Z was 88134 based on the class 132 prototype from 1982.

Marklin 88134

Insider Locomotive 2012: 88010 – BR 001 DB

Marklin’s Insider Model for 2012 was one of the first of the new generation of steam locomotives featuring completely new tooling with impressive detailing of side rods and LED’s.

Based on the prototype, BR 001 161-9 is an Era IV locomotive following the German Reclassification of 1968 which added an ‘0’ to the operating number.

Built in the mid 1930’s this locomotive class was the first to be “standardized” thus parts were universally available throughout Germany. More than 200 class 01’s were manufactured from 1926-1938 with some continuing in service for the DR until 1982 and the DB until 1973.

Marklin’s 88010 represents the prototype from 1968, the appropriate coach set for this locomotive is Marklin 87401 comprising 5 cars in ‘pop’ colors with destination boards “Braunschweig – Aachen.” Pairing 88010 and 87401 will create a prototypical trainset with associated destination boards for Braunschweig – Aachen from Era IV.

German BR 01 Express Locomotive: DB’s BR 01 154

The inscription on the verso side of this photograph gives the place and date as “In Nuremberg 1966.” Seven years later this class of locomotive would be retired from service for the DB, this one in 1968. As a side note: Class 01’s continued service until 1982 for the DR. Built starting in 1926 the BR 01 express steam locomotive was in service for many years, this one being BR 01 154 built during the time-frame 1930-31. In 1950-51 this locomotive along with 4 others were rebuilt with Witte smoke deflectors as can be seen in the photograph along with several improvements including Heinl mixer preheater, turbo pump and combustion chambers in the boilers. The rather clear representation of the tender was one of three types T 30, T 32 or T 34 varying by length to fit a particular turntable being used. The class 01 steam locomotive was the first to be considered “standardized” meaning parts with exact specifications could be used to repair this locomotive throughout Germany.

Inside the cab:

Specs for this rebuilt locomotive:

Service Weight: 109.3 long tons/ 122.5 short tons

Adhesive Weight: 59.1 long tons/ 66.1 short tons

Axle Load: 19.7 long tons/ 22 short tons

Power: 2417 hp

Grate Area: 46.4 square feet

Superheater Area: 1022.6 square feet

Resource: DRG Class 01 Wikipedia Page

The uniformed train driver poses next to his locomotive as his fireman peers through a cab window, his briefcase presumably contains his log and maintenance checklist. Standing along the rails of a gantry crane the train driver waits to board the locomotive which is in line to receive coal and water. A few chunks of coal outside the coal bunker suggests it was just loaded along with water as evidenced in the run off near the fill hatch. The train driver was more than the operator of the locomotive, he was responsible for the well being of the passengers and locomotive, following safety and maintenance protocols he was operating a locomotive of such power it could reach speeds upwards of 80 miles an hour. Interpreting signals on the right of way was assured by this well trained individual who could operate a steam train and deliver its passengers in accordance with printed schedules: safe and timely. Physical demands of the job cannot be overstated, this was not an easy way to make a living. When this photograph was made the locomotive and train driver were of similar age, two years later the locomotive would be retired, and the trainman with his specialized skills may have continued operating steam locos in this class for the DB until 1973.

Marklin has produced two BR 01’s in ‘Z’ since 2012: 88010 and 88011. Released in 2012, Marklin 88010 was the Insider Model for that year as BR 001 of the DB with operating number 001 161-9 based on the Era IV prototype. Two years later the 88011 was released based on an Era III prototype with operating number 01 147. Both locomotives represent the new generation of steam locos by Marklin with superb detailing of the operating equipment and side rods.

88010

88011

Both locomotives look virtually alike, the distinguishing feature is the operating numbers.

Siding: a short ton is 2000 pounds and commonly called a ‘ton’ in the United States whereas a long ton is 12% larger, it is referred to also as ‘Imperial Ton.”

Siding: In 1968 Germany reclassified their locomotives, steam locomotives at this time were given an extra ‘0’ thus the Marklin 88010 is a BR 001.

 

BR 94, BR 194, BR 1020: Marklin 5 Pole Motor Upgrade

Marklin’s 5 pole motor upgrade for 8812, 8822, 88221, and 8824 uses Marklin Part #E211906. The original motor for these listed locos was 3 pole with part number 268200, the original 3 pole was a good motor for this loco design which featured cast metal frame and end units thus making for a well balanced and heavy locomotive. Improvements with the upgrade include finer slow running performance and quieter operation.

This upgrade will be performed on 8824 which is the BR 194 lettered for the DB with turquoise and cream paint scheme. 8824 was produced for 5 years starting in 1989. If your loco was stored for many years without running it may need a full restoration in addition to the motor upgrade. If nothing moves, the motor does not run, and just the lights work it could have “hardened oil syndrome.” Restoration of locos with hardened oil require complete breakdown and cleaning.

*******DO NOT INSTALL NEW 5 POLE MOTOR IN LOCO THAT DOES HAVE FREELY MOVING GEARS, MOTOR COULD BE DAMAGED BEYOND REPAIR IF POWER IS APPLIED AND THE MOTOR MEETS RESISTANCE FROM NON MOVING GEARS.*****************

Motor upgrade for this loco will require a little patience and time, but generally speaking it is a fairly easy repair. To start: 1. pull off middle cast plastic shell with very thin plastic guitar picks.

2. Note: circuit board does not have a retaining screw as other mini-club locos have, it is held in place with 4 clips. Carefully release the circuit board from clips with gentle pressure using a small screwdriver.

3. Wires soldered to either end of circuit board should be carefully pulled from center between pick-ups to outside of pick-ups. Solder points maybe brittle due to age, there is the possibility at this point that one may break necessitating soldering.

4. With circuit board gently pulled to one side unscrew clips holding motor to chassis.

5. Note: original motor and new 5 pole motor are basically the same with differences including heavier gauge wire for capacitor and different coating on capacitor. I have made this upgrade a few times already, and I have noticed manufacturing differences with this motor including a larger coating on the capacitor plus varying length of wire for the capacitor. The nature of the capacitor with this motor can create a few challenges for the repairman. It is required that the capacitor is bent low enough to not impede placement of the circuit board, and the new motor with heavier gauge wire is more difficult to bend than its forebear. Plus manufacturing differences with capacitor coating may add another layer of difficulty. In this example the capacitor is of normal size, but one I recently installed in the 8812 was large which made for a challenging placement of it just above the worm gear while still being low enough under circuit board.

Note: black housing in the new motor.

Note: original motor’s capacitor wires are bent with a slight curl near motor with capacitor nearly touching worm gear.

6. Next: add one drop of oil on each worm drive before installing clips. Circuit board and wires should return to their original position with great care to avoid bending pick-ups. Circuit board clips back into place and then shell goes back on with catenary screw peaking out of hole in shell.

Siding: a brief break-in period for the motor is recommended before installation at low, medium and high throttle for a couple minutes both directions.

Marklin BR 10 Steam Locomotive: 5 Pole Motor Upgrade

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Marklin’s BR 10 steam locomotives 8888 + 8889 were released with 3 pole motors, today the 5 pole motor upgrade is possible and relatively easy. Side by side comparison of the 3 pole (262700-clear casing) and 5 pole (E211911-black casing) motors:

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This loco design features a fairly heavy cast metal shell that performs well putting weight on the wheels and giving excellent tractive effort. Does this loco benefit from the motor upgrade? This is one of those locos that runs great with 3 pole, but the 5 pole will be a little bit better slow throttle and a bit more quiet. The repair is quick for those with a little experience and patience.

The shell is removed by first gently prying off cap that conceals screw followed by removing screw.

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The motor capacitor wires are always soldered to the chassis pick-ups, with soldering iron apply heat and remove original solder points.

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Remove top and bottom screws that hold motor in place. Slide off old motor. If floating gear on pin  is pulled out carefully turn until gearing engages with wheel gears. Slide opposite end of pin into brass bushing of new motor and carefully engage gears with the motor gear.

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Secure top and bottom screws and resolder capacitor wires and chassis electrical pick-ups. Notice side rods are held in place after securing shell, it maybe a little tricky at first to place side rods correctly before attaching shell. Note: one side rod on each side is always stationary and held in place by sliding onto post in frame (red plastic), the other side rod on each side is held in a channel below the other side rod.

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Carefully holding both pairs of side rods in place while attaching shell is the only method for achieving success, you may need to try this several times to achieve the awkward coordination needed. Note: front of shell always goes on first.