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lurkingknight

this place is blowing my mind.

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lurkingknight

full size functioning airport, multiple layouts of different eras and regions... You almost need binoculars to see into the far corners of these things.

 

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Martijn Meerts

Meh, no Japanese ;)

 

Actually, I've been there (quite a few years ago), and it's quite a thing to see. What's not directly apparent though is that especially the first bits they built, the detail is really rather lacking, and a lot of things seems to be slapped together in order to make opening day. The newer sections, like the 2-floor swiss alps bit is just incredible though. I didn't see the airport in action since they were still building it when I was there, but I did get to see all the mechanisms since I did a behind the scenes tour.

 

Also, boats moving on real water doesn't work in H0 :D

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katoftw

i'm sure they have a japanese section.  or that might be coming.  the fire trucks are awesome.

 

the actual wunderland website has better vids.

Edited by katoftw

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Martijn Meerts

There's no Japanese section, and while it has been mentioned as a possibility in the future, there are no actual plans for it so far. They're also running out of space in the building, so they'd need to solve that first.

 

They recently started building the Italy section, and after that they'll do France. Japan is still listed as a possible future addition, but then again, so is the African jungle (narrow gauge railway), a local German line, a huge industrial yard, etc. Heck, they've even talked about a scifi/space theme section ;)

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lurkingknight

business must be good to get that kind of forward planning.

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katoftw

the airport section cost 1.5M euro alone from memory.

 

https://www.miniatur-wunderland.com/

 

i also like the swiss section, it has a open air concert.  and by chance i recognised the artist, the fantasy buddha concert stage.  cool that they used a real life artist.

 

although it look like the stage has changed from vampires or fantasy or visa versa.  maybe it will be a circus stage soon?

Edited by katoftw

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kvp

I've actually been there last year. They are building Italy right now (for example Venice, hopefully with working ships) and the old parts have been moved and updated. My favourite area was Switzerland and Austria. Most of the layout is Germany with the working ships in the north european area. When you are building scale H0 cruiseliners, then putting an RC propulsion in is not a problem, you have around a meter length to fit it in. Actually i found one of the ships from their layout at the docks outside. They are using marklin H0 for Germany and a 2 rail system for the (small and badly done) US area. Everything is DCC-ed including car control. The planes are driven with the faller system on the ground and lifted to the air by thin sticks until they disappear through the wall. Landing is done the same way after a trip on a conveyor belt behind the wall. Everything is lighted and they have a few nice animated scenes, like people loading railcars (with hidden magnets moving them). When i was there, they had a few non working things, like some of the rail lines had no operating trains, some animated scenes were broken and one of the lifting bridges were not moving but i've seen at least 5 people trying to fix things on the layout and more people in the repair shops at the back. It's a huge work to keep everything running and they are still building, so even more full time staff will be needed. Control is automated with full digital control and cctv. They can reprogram the car routing or the train schedule from a computer or even the blinking patterns for most lights. Pretty impressive.

 

Another great layout in the same city is the old gauge 1 club club layout in the attic of the local museum. This layout was in use by the club since before ww2 and survived the war, and only became visitable after the war (since many members never came back for their trains). The first trains were hand built by the founding members and since then they keep the layout running and update it time to time. The control center is a full control tower mounted above the layout and while it has lots of computers, it's not fully automated. They are doing show runs a few times a day a few days a week, so you must check the schedule if you want to see it. The layout is Hamburg before world war 2, so most of the stations and buildings are not there anymore, while the rolling stock is mixed from the oldest trains to the newest. (most of them is owned by the club members) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHdwuiqwdro http://www.mehev.de

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westfalen

I'm hoping to visit there later this year. We are planning a full day there and keeping the next day free incase we want to go back.

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Zeether

Saw some clips of this in episode 6 of James May's Toy Stories, magnificent layout.

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tridentalx

I'm hoping to visit there later this year. We are planning a full day there and keeping the next day free incase we want to go back.

 

I went there in October and it was fantastic. You could look at the same section 3 times and find new stuff each time. We spent about 3 hours there, had lunch then another hour or so. You may be more patient in just watching trains go by but I wouldn't have thought you need more than a day at most. Enjoy your visit.

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ozman2009

It has been suggested that you get there as early as possible, to get ahead of the tourist coaches.

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westfalen

I went there in October and it was fantastic. You could look at the same section 3 times and find new stuff each time. We spent about 3 hours there, had lunch then another hour or so. You may be more patient in just watching trains go by but I wouldn't have thought you need more than a day at most. Enjoy your visit.

3 hours!  You're an amateur, I arrived when they opened at 9am and was the last one out when they closed at 7pm. :)

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Lawrence

Spent 2 days there a couple of years ago, planning a return this year hopefully, believe they are building Japanese, African and British sections

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westfalen

If so it will be interesting to see if the Japanese section has realism of the German sections or if it is just a caricature (albiet well done) like the American section.

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kvp

Last time i saw it they were building Italy, especially Venice, including all the underwater parts. Hopefully it will have moving water buses (called vaporetto-s) and imho they should build the railway station too that is connected to the land through a bridge.

 

Maintenance is a huge task and more and more people are needed just to keep everything moving. Since almost everything is custom made, there is a high chance that something will be broken every day and they can't replace them immediately with a spare part, so they have to be repaired during the nights. For trains and anything mass produced, they actually do have identical spare sets.

 

Japan would be a hard thing to do, since they are using H0 scale and the lack of reliable, cheap, mass produced trains in japanese H0 with good spare parts support could be a problem. They started using maerklin technology in the european parts, because maerklin so far managed to offer spare parts for 40+ years old trains, so they can repair the rolling stock. There is a huge transparent display bin near the enterance, filled with used motors just from a year of operation.

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westfalen

Last November they had the track and platforms for the station in Rome and the nearby colluseum in place and much of the bench work for the Italian section done so you could start to see how it is taking shape.

 

Our backstage guide said they have 350 employees and average 200-250 derailments and other mishaps per day, it was good to see a train stall and someone come out to give it a shove just like the rest of us do.  I think he ushered us out of the American section after we started picking out mistakes in the consist of just about every train like cars from the wrong era or the Southern Pacific RDC running through the Florida Keys.

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katoftw

You mean I cannot run a Shonan consist through the Kirishima Mountains? Surely no one will notice?

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Martijn Meerts

They have had plans for a Japanese section for a while already, but no indication it'll ever be done. As it is now, they've got very limited space left to do anything at all. They've talked about renting the building across the canal from where they are now, and build a huge bridge connecting the 2 buildings too :)

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Sean

I`ve seen that video before and its one place I definitely want to see (though Hamburg wouldn`t otherwise figure in any German tour).

 

Though by no means on the same scale, the most impressive Japanese layout I`ve seen (also in HO) is at the Maglev railway museum in Nagoya.  They have Tokyo-Nagoya-Kyoto-Osaka all in one layout, its quite nice (and the museum is really good too)

 

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kvp

Interesting layout. I recognise most of the scenes and it looks like half of them are in N scale, with some parts even smaller, like T. Seeing they compressed the 8 tracks in Tokyo to 4 and compressed 4 areas withing a 2 mile radius into a single one, doing it in N scale with all 8 tracks for a club layout, seem like a rather large attempt.

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Rail Announcement

It's amazing!

 

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velotrain

Also, boats moving on real water doesn't work in H0 :D

 

Martijn - it has been done!

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cteno4

I thin martjin was referring that the water motion just does not scale well. Also coloring the water to look realistic is tough.

 

Jeff

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Martijn Meerts

Martijn - it has been done!

 

Well, okay.. It 'works', but it looks ridiculous ;)

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cteno4

Sorry I was being polite!

 

Jeff

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