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Marklin layout from the early 1980s

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@Darius43 - Thanks for uploading those pictures. Would say that there weren't too many guys your age [at that time] in Britain who had as good of a model railway layout. Was in my 20s when I discovered there was something out there other than Hornby, Lima and the likes. Do you recall how the Marklin models compared to their British counterparts?

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The Markin locos and stock were very detailed, well made and robust - much better than contemporary Hornby and Lima models.  Being a 16V AC centre stud contact system, two rail DC UK locos were incompatible and obtaining Marklin stock in the UK in the late 1970s and early 1980s was almost impossible.  Added to that was the price of the locos - well over double that of a typical Hornby loco at the time.

Things improved a bit when a shop called Mega Models opened in London (Rathbone Place off Oxford Street) that stocked Markin and I was slowly able to obtain more track and a couple of locos.  I was also able to adapt Lima wagons as their “UK” range contained several continental prototypes with spurious UK liveries.  Visits to Leisure World in North Queen Street, Belfast helped in this respect - they also had a limited stock of Pola and Faller building kits.  Other buildings I scratch built from card and thin plywood based on pictures in a Vollmer catalogue that I found at a model railway exhibition.

Cheers

Darius

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47 minutes ago, Darius43 said:

obtaining Marklin stock in the UK in the late 1970s and early 1980s was almost impossible.  Added to that was the price of the locos - well over double that of a typical Hornby loco at the time.

In my circles, although model railways were generally much less prevalent than in the general population, due to the annual migrations of RAF life, the likelihood of being in Germany for a while led to continental stuff having a much higher profile - although, Marklin products were generally associated with officers' kids.

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@Darius43 - Thanks very much for responding to my query. I used to hear that continental European model railways were more expensive than Hornby et al but, that was with good reason. Never understood why Marklin stuck with the AC system - does it have an advantage over DC? Had a Marklin Hamo E19 locomotive at one time, sort of regret getting rid of it but, always try not to accumulate items if I'm not going to run them.

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I my opinion the Marklin 16V AC system is somewhat limiting in what you can run and what sort of track you can run it on.  Reverse loops are not an issue electronically though.  On the whole I prefer 2 rail DC/DCC.  

This is compared to the 1980s Marklin system.  I think they now have a sort of DCC system with decoders and sound.

Cheers

Darius

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