Category Archives: Marklin Special Imprints

FR: SJ BP tank car uniquely paired Marklin MSI

Ever wonder how many Marklin MSI’s have been produced? I have and one extraordinary collector has them all, his audacity in acquiring them is an achievement in itself winning him the Guinness Book of World Records for the feat in 2006, his name is Gilles Monk of Belgium.

One relatively obscure Marklin Special Imprint is a tank car lettered for BP and used on the SJ: type 8612 mini-club tank car lettered for BP Svenska released in 1989 with Koll’s #89717 and Miba/Monk #423 released in an edition of 200.

Here the 1989 MSI tank car (top) is paired with a superb repainting and lettering for BP/SJ by FR with item number 46.396.01 and produced in a total edition of 35 with black paint scheme.

This is a reworked Marklin mini-club tank car that is infrequently offered by FR to round out various types of Scandinavian rolling stock. Reworked and repainted includes newly designed and richly detailed metal add-on parts (more intricate than the original) and complete removal of original paint and lettering. This type of production is labor intensive from research to final car thus making these releases attractive historically, and small batch release makes them ever more collectible.

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!


Z Club 92: MWB trainset

In 1992 a very interesting collectors group was formed in Italy to promote ‘Z’ gauge railroading: Z Club 92, it later expanded to worldwide membership and featured an annual car for members. These annual offerings included some interesting freight cars that are available on the secondary market, produced in limited numbers these cars have become true collectors’ items.

To mark Z Club 92’s 10th anniversary a club train was announced in 2002, and the first annual car was released and lettered for the firm MWB Mittelweserbahn GmbH which was founded in 1998 as a rail transport company (Bruchhausen-Vilsen) and later (2013) merged with Elbe-Weser (EVB). The first car released was a low sided flat car with yellow and blue paint scheme which would be the basis for future releases.

In 2004 the release of a former V60 diesel locomotive included shell only, it was delivered in the standard printed Marklin Z carton.

Nine cars and a loco comprise the complete Z Club 92 club train lettered for MWB with the final release in 2008 of a passenger coach.

An Introduction to Marklin Z American prototypes and rare small batch imprints

Marklin has brought to life American railroading prototypes in small measure if one compares the total entries of European ones: lot’s of F7’s, Mikado’s and GG1’s along with respective rolling stock. The eras portrayed are mid century primarily with a few earlier exceptions. Micro Trains is stronger in the field of American prototypes with their exhaustive survey of various rolling stock each boxed with a well researched and charted description. American prototypes are not a strong category for Marklin Z, but when they release something new like the GG1 it is a superlative example. And the F7 sets or individual ‘A’ units are widely collected in their infinite variety. But one type of a rolling stock example in each category makes life a bit challenging if you collect exclusively Marklin, and you are serious about railroading. Some collectors have opted for trading out couplers so MicroTrains rolling stock and locos can be used with Marklin and vice versa. It is a good trade off, but those of us lucky enough to own the Commodore Vanderbilt are still stuck without a coach set. Other manufacturers are on the scene producing high quality models including but not limited to AZL, and their current collaboration with Marklin  in the production of three variations of the E8 maybe the first of more collaborations, who knows?

If you are a tried and true collector of Marklin Z American models like me you may already know about the small batch special imprint rolling stock. In coming months I will be including examples of these rare offerings that little information has thus far been known. Hopefully with the help of others in this field of collecting I can shed more light on this topic until then stay tuned and happy railroading!

Marklin: Maintenance of Way

Marklin’s ‘maintenance of way’ rolling stock and locos is an ever expanding area of collecting including regular releases and limited ones. The daily respect and observance of track, roadbed and signals is an experience we have in common at least keeping track clean for good electrical contact. Railroads around the world perform various levels of maintenance some more than others. Incorporating some of these interesting locos and rolling stock in a layout further represents what railroading is all about, maintenance is key to everything running smoothly in scale or prototypical operation.  This is a very interesting topic for collectors and a number of manufacturers produce some great items including Railex and FR. Check out their sections on this blog. And definitely take a look at FR’s website which seems to include several examples of MOW vehicles from SJ and SBB including a snowplow loco coming up!


  1. 87741- German Federal Railways (DB) type ‘fast measurement’ coach lettered “Messwagen Versuchsanstalt Minden”. Limited European release.


2. 8657.H.F.WIEBE- ‘MSI’ (Marklin Special Imprint) type Krupp-Ardelt crane car and low sided flat car with boom rest lettered for H.F.WIEBE. Car set originally sold with train set 81782 in a limited number of 500. Produced for Conrad Electronic.                                                                      3. 8657.3- German Federal Railroad (DB) Era IV type Krupp-Ardelt crane car and low sided car in yellow with boom rest (Version #3) produced 1991-2008. *two versions proceeded this version with color variations                                                                                                                         4.86571- German Federal Railroad (DB) Era III type Krupp-Ardelt crane car and low sided car with boom rest.

*Note: a single type Krupp-Ardelt crane car with boom rest was released as 8621 in three blue color versions, it was produced 1986 – 1987. All crane cars have working crane, pivoting boom, and swivel cabin.



MSI’s: Marklin 8622 car type

In the MSI category very few 8622 car types were produced, one from 1985 is the BP Stromeyer, this one was matched with an 8626 type tank car in an 8163 starter set.


  1. 8622 car type MSI lettered for BP stromeyer, Koll’s #85710, edition size: 500. *Originally sold with the 8626 tank car MSI (same Koll’s number) lettered for BP stromeyer as a starter set that also included a BR 89 locomotive.
  2.  86225- 2 car hopper set lettered for H.F. WIEBE, released 2005


MSI’s: Marklin 8661 car type


from top:

  1. Schwanen-Brau, Koll’s #91001, edition size: 140
  2. Stuttgarter Hofbrau, Koll’s #91002, edition size: 250
  3. Neckar-Echo, *pictured right, Koll’s #91701, edition size: 100
  4. Sarotti, Koll’s #91702, edition size: 250
  5. Herbsthauser Biere, Koll’s #92001, edition size: 200
  6. Markgrafen-Brau, Koll’s #92003, edition size: 300


7. Rizzibrau, Koll’s #92004, edition size: 300                                                                                           8. Kapuzinerbrau, Koll’s #92005, edition size: 300                                                                                9. Monchshof, Koll’s #92006, edition size: 300                                                                                          10. Forchtenberger Flatterberg, wgf., *left in photo on right, Koll’s #92007, edition size: 200      11. ICI – Lacke Farben, *right in photo on right, Koll’s #92701, edition size: 100                           12. EUROPA ’92, Koll’s #92702, edition size: 200                                                                                      13. Sauglings-Fursorge der Stadt Berlin, 1993 Insider Club Car, Koll’s #93001,                           edition size: 1000                                                                                                                                            14. Wasseralfinger Schlegelbrau-Bier, Koll’s #94001, edition size: 100


15. Koepf Bier, Koll’s #94002, edition size: 100                                                                                      16. EXPORT-BIER – DINKELACKER STUTTGART, Koll’s #94004, edition size: 100                             17. LAGER-BIER – DINKELACKER STUTTGART, Koll’s #94005, edition size: 100                                18. Wimpfener Puppenmuseum, Koll’s #94701, edition size: 100                                                     19. WEIPERT, Koll’s #94702, edition size: 100                                                                                            20. SCUPIN, Koll’s #94703, edition size: 100


21. Heineken, Koll’s #95002, edition size: 100                                                                                         22. BRAUEREI ZUM ENGL. HAUS, Koll’s #95003, edition size: 100                                                       23. ENGLISCH HOF-BRAU, Koll’s #95004, edition size: 100                                                                     24. Wagenseil’schen Brauerei, Koll’s #95006, edition size: 100                                                         25. Ochsen-Signet der ULMER BRAUEREI GESELLSCH LAGER BIER,                                                       Koll’s #96001, edition size: 100                                                                                                                 26. Ochsen-Signet der ULMER BRAUEREI GESELLSCH PILSENER BIER,                                            Koll’s #96002, edition size: 100


27. AKT. BRAUEREI WULLE, Koll’s #96003, edition size: 100                                                                  28. BINDING Lager, Koll’s #96004, edition size: 300                                                                              29. Richard Snaga Hannover, Z Club International club wagen,                                                      Koll’s #96702, edition size: 800                                                                                                                   30. Wilhelm Bader – Wilbader, Koll’s #96704, edition size: 100                                                          31. VEREINIGTE MARGARINE-WERKE…NURNBERG, Koll’s 96705,                                                     edition size: 100                                                                                                                                             32. Giengener Bier, 8661.012, Miba/Monk #1008, released 1996


33. HEINRICH HARLE Brauerei Aulendorf, 8661.023, Miba/Monk #1046,                                      released 1996                                                                                                                                                 34. ANKER-BROT, 8661. 039, Miba/Monk#1186, released 1998                                                          35. Gauder Bock Zillertal, 8661.042, Miba/Monk #1211, released 1999                                        36. BRASSEREI du CARDINAL FRIBOURG SUISSE, 8661.901,                                                Miba/Monk #1343, edition size: 300, released 2000                                                                            37. SALMEN – BIER, 8661. 904, Miba/Monk #1433, edition size: 300,                                                   released 2001                                                                                                                                                 38. LOWENBRAU ZURICH, 8661.905, Miba/Monk #1434, edition size: 300,                                     released 2001


39. ANKER BIER, 8661.907, Miba/Monk #1481, edition size: 300,                                                       released 2002                                                                                                                                                 40. A.STIHL TRAGBARE BAUMFALL KETTENSAGEN, 8661.021,                                              Miba/Monk #1045, edition size: 100, released 1996

MSI’s: Marklin 8612 car type

Marklin 8612 car type designates a two axle tank car. The MSI 8612 is/was mostly designed and lettered for petroleum companies from around the world. This MSI has proven to be a particular favorite for many collectors featuring a global representation with lively colors and graphics. Marklin has produced this MSI in recent years, but earlier ones are hard to come by; Ebay lists a half dozen different ones at any given time, sometimes more if a collection is being sold. One good source for this and other MSI’s is operated by Rob Kluz of Z Track Magazine: check often, excellent prices and rarity sends things out the door quickly.


from top:

  1. Stromeyer, originally sold as part of a starter set, Koll’s #79701, edition size: 500
  2. Asbach Uralt, Koll’s #86001, edition size: 300
  3. KERAMCHEMIE KCH, Koll’s #86701, edition size: 100
  4. FINA, Koll’s #86703, edition size: 100
  5. RAAB KARCHER (rot), Koll’s #86704, edition size: 200
  6. Wintershall Mineralot, Koll’s #86705, edition size: 200


7. Herberts, Koll’s #86706, edition size: 200                                                                                               8. TOTAL, Koll’s #86707, edition size: 100                                                                                                   9. BASF, Koll’s #86708, edition size: 200                                                                                                     10. elf, Koll’s #86709, edition size: 200                                                                                                      11. Herbsthauser Bier, Koll’s #87002, edition size 200                                                                      12. ELLER MONTAN, Koll’s #87701, edition size: 100


13. MIGROL Heizol, Koll’s #87702, edition size: 300                                                                                14. huls, Koll’s #87703, edition size: 100                                                                                                   15. Chevron, Koll’s #87704, edition size: 300                                                                                          16. SCHERING AG, Koll’s #87708, edition size: 100                                                                                   17. FANAL, Koll’s #87709, edition size: 100                                                                                              18. HANIEL Heizol, Koll’s #87710, edition size: 100


19. ol muller, 8612.261, Koll’s #87711, edition size: 100                                                                       20. DEUTSCHE ASPHALT, Koll’s 87713, edition size: 100                                                                      21. woellner, 8612.244, Koll’s #87714, edition size: 300                                                                          22. VVV, 8612.268, Koll’s #87715, edition size: 500                                                                                    23. SACHTLEBEN, Koll’s #87718, edition size: 100                                                                                  24. WESTFALEN-GAS, Koll’s #87719, edition size: 100


25. UNION KRAFTSTOFF, Koll’s #87721, editon size: 100                                                                        26. Hoechst (large letters), Koll’s #87723, edition size: 200                                                                     27. KLOCKNER PENTAPLAST, 8612.204, Koll’s #87724, Miba/Monk #204, edition size: 100            28. SIGLOCH WEINKELLEREI, 8612.341, Koll’s #88001, edition size: 200                                              29. CARBO, Koll’s #88703, edition size: 200                                                                                                30. Q8 (white), Koll’s #88708, edition size: 300


31. FUELS, Koll’s #88709, edition size: 100                                                                                                  32. MESSER GRIESHEIM, Koll’s #88710, edition size: 100                                                                         33. PRIMAGAS, Koll’s #88711, edition size: 100                                                                                         34. Mobil 1, Koll’s #88713, edition size: 100                                                                                               35. SCHINDLER CHEMIE, Koll’s #88714, edition size: 100                                                                        36. LM – LIQUI MOLY, Koll’s #88715, edition size: 100


37. LM-TOURING MOTOROIL, Koll’s #88716, ediiton size: 100                                                              38. LM-TOURING, Koll’s #88717, edition size: 100                                                                                    39. KRUPP HEIZOL, Koll’s #88718, edition size: 100                                                                                  40. CIBA-GEIGY AEROLITE, Koll’s #88719, edition size: 300                                                                     41. Weingartnergenossenschaft Niederhall, Koll’s #89001, edition size: 200                                  42. Wasserwagen, Koll’s #89002, edition size: 500


43. Eka Nobel, Koll’s #89706, edition size: 100                                                                                          44. calpam, Koll’s #89708, edition size: 300                                                                                               45. VALVOLINE Motor Oil, Koll’s #89709, edition size: 100                                                                     46. Q8 (dark blue), Koll’s #89711, edition size: 200                                                                                    47. STATOIL, Koll’s #89716, edition size: 200                                                                                              48. BP, Koll’s #89717, edition size: 200


49. mann, Koll’s #90002, edition size: 200                                                                                                  50. Sulzbach/Saar, Koll’s #91701, edition size: 500                                                                                   51. 100 Jahre transsibirische Eisenbahn, Koll’s #92705, edition size: 500                                     52. TOTAL (Simotra- SNCF) Marklin #82823.1, Koll’s #96701, Miba/Monk #989, edition size: 300 53. SHELL (Simotra- SNCF) Marklin #82823.2, Koll’s #96701, Miba/Monk #987, edition size: 300  54. ESSO (Simotra- SNCF) Marklin #82823.3, Koll’s #96701, Miba/Monk #988, edition size: 300


55. MOTOREX, Marklin #8612.901, Koll’s #96702, edition size: 300                                                       56. VALVOLINE, Marklin #8612.904, Koll’s #96703, edition size: 300                                                    57. OK Coop, Marklin #8612.905, Koll’s #96704, edition size: 300                                                          58. elf, Marklin #8612.902, Koll’s #96705, edition size: 300                                                                     59. GATOIL, Marklin #8612.900, Koll’s #96706, edition size: 300                                                            60. ASEOL, Marklin 8612.907, Miba/Monk #1069


61. LONZA, Marklin #8612.908, Miba/Monk #1071, released 1997                                                       62. FELDSCHOLSSEN BIER, Marklin #8612.909, Miba/Monk #1239, released 1999                            63. CICA, Marklin #8612.910, Miba/Monk #1240, released 1999                                                            64. TAMOIL, Marklin #8612.913, Miba/Monk #1294, released 1999                                                      65. Transportation Corps U.S. Army, Marklin #8612.024, Miba/Monk #1322, released 1999        66. Mobil, Marklin #8612.918, Miba/Monk #1366, released 2000


67. Pan Gas, Marklin #8612.919, Miba/Monk #1364, released 2000                                                     68. SBB Instruktions-Wagen, Marklin 8612.923, Miba/Monk #1420, released 2001                         69. B CARGO, Marklin #8612.804, Miba/Monk #1467, released 2002                                                    70. MAGMA, Marklin #8612.040, Miba/Monk #1614, released 2004

Marklin Railbuses

Marklin Z Railbuses were introduced in 1988 with model 8122 and MSI model “McDonalds” followed in 1989 with 8816. Model 8122 was a railbus and trailer set decorated and lettered for the regional line “Cheimgau-Bahn” and 8816 was a standard class 798 railbus (*trailer was sold separately). In 1991 another MSI model was released, this one was made by Railex and lettered for RAG Germany’s largest coal mining corporation, special edition RAG railbus and trailer set was sold unpowered which included the shell only for the powered end unit. Next came the 8802 in 1991 (released in two versions) and later (1999) replaced by the 5 pole motor version 88021. 8802 and 88021 were very interesting MOW railbuses, but in Z they are used for cleaning track with the unique and very interesting design using a buffing wheel that successfully dislodges large dirt, grease, oil and oxidation needs to be removed with a pass of denatured alcohol on a clean cloth. Not pictured in this collection is the MSI 88161 with imprinting for        5. mini-club Treffen Speyer 28./29. September 96: One Time Series 1996. The Austrain railbus 88162 was a One TIme Series in 1998, it is much sought after today. From 1994-2008 the 8831 lettered for “Jagermeister” enjoyed the longest run in railbuses from Marklin with early ones employing the original 3 pole motor and late ones with the 5 pole motor installed. Two MSI’s followed in 2001 and 2002: 88164 + 88165. In 2008 a One Time Series for the MHI program was released in a special edition, the railbus and trailer were lettered for Doorncaat and included two Doorncaat glasses. Finally the limited release of the railbus and box car set 88313 in 2010.


from top:

  1. 88701 – Special imprint class 798 railbus lettered “McDonald’s voll in Fahrt,” Koll’s #88701, edition size: 1000. Originally sold as a starter set with track and 9 volt battery throttle.
  2. 8112- Chiemgau-Bahn class 798 railbus and class 998 railbus trailer. Build date: 1988-1994.
  3. 91702 – Special imprint class 798 railbus and class 998 railbus trailer lettered for                RAG (Ruhrkohle AG). Collaboration between Railex and Z-Club International. Class 798 railbus included shell only and boxed in a standard Marklin plastic case with trailer.


4. 8802.2- SCHIENENREINIGUNGSWAGEN class 724 rail maintenance railbus for the DB. Build date: 1991-1995.                                                                                                                                            5. 88021- Indusi – Messwagen class 724 rail maintenance railbus for DB AG. Build date: 1999-2010.                                                                                                                                                      6. 8816.5 + 8817- German Federal Railroad (DB) class 798 railbus and class 998 railbus trailer. Five versions of 8816 were produced with subtle design changes in lettering.                                 7. Austrian Federal Railways (OBB) class 5081 railbus and class 6581 railbus trailer. One Time Series 1998. Originally sold with 3 pole motor.


8. 8831- German Federal Railroad (DB) class 798 railbus with advertising for “Jagermeister.” Build date: 1994-2008.                                                                                                                                    9. 88164- Prignitzer Eisenbaum GmbH class 798 railbus and class 998 railbus trailer, privately owned and lettered for Prignitzer Eisenbaum regional rail Berlin. One Time Series 2001. Originally sold to dealer members of Eurotrain/idee-spiel cooperative.                                               10. 88165- Elbe-Weser GmbH (EVB) class 798 railbus and class 998 railbus trailer, privately owned and lettered for Elbe-Weser (EVB), Lower Saxony German regional line. One Time Series 2002. Originally sold to dealer members of Eurotrain/idee-spiel cooperative.


11. 88311- Elmshom-Barmstedt-Oldesloer Railway (EBOE) class VT 98 rail car and class VS 98 control car. Painted with advertising for spirits of the sixties, lettered for “Doornkaat.” Includes two Doornkaat schnapps glasses. One Time Series 2008.                                                                      12. 88313- Deutsche Bundesbahn (DB) class 798 railbus, type Gos-uv 253 box car, and type Gbrs-v 245 box car. Limited production. Released 2010.

Siding: Marklin Z railbuses are easy to repair and upgrade. Check out Marklin Z Repair Notes category.

Marklin MSI’s: Locomotives

Cheese adorns the SBB class Am 4/4 diesel locomotive produced by Marklin as a special imprint in 1994 along with an Hbis car the same year.


Marklin 88820 – Schweizerische Bundesbahnen (SBB) class Am 4/4 diesel locomotive with special imprinting: “Kaselocher”, Koll’s #94701, edition size: 1000 + matching freight car: 88656.5 – SBB class Hbis with special imprinting: “Kaselocher”, Koll’s #94702. Edition size: 300

Siding: Edition size for car and loco vary as reported by Koll’s more research is required to confirm the veracity of Koll’s recording.