As usual Marklin has the largest stand at the Fair. This year did not disappoint. The stand feature large displays on the outside. The inside has a large meeting area with tables for the representatives from all the different countries. It also has meeting offices where we meet with the Marklin leadership. Finally there is a restaurant area, where they serve us food (and delicious dessert). In this blog we show some of the displays this year.
Our arrival in Germany in the dark morning hours quickly changed to a beautiful sunny but cold day, great for some driving.
What is always amazing is how many trucks are on the road. A clear sign that Western Europe still produces and transports many items.
Most stretches of the Autobahn now have three lanes in each direction. This is done because trucks are limited to about 50mph.
Trucks are banned from the fast lane, so that the Porsche 911’s and Mercedes AMG S63’s do not have to slow from 150 back down to 50 every minute a truck passes. The center lane seems to become the slow lane for passenger cars.
In reality you do not see many Porsche’s or Mercedes S-classes. You see more of them in two minutes in Southlake Texas, than 2 hours on the Autobahn. in the fast lane you actually see many Audi, BMW and VW diesels!
The high load of trucks became clear when the highway switched from 4 traffic lanes to two. Because trucks are banned from the fast lanes, they backed up for many miles, two lanes thick!
Our hotel is 30 minutes from the Toy Fair, and every year during the fair it is completely sold out. Guests from literally all over the world are staying here to visit the largest Toy fair in the world.
Just in case there are some beer lovers amongst our readers…
And finally a picture of food. Note the salad in the background please, not everything was fried!
What are feedback modules?
The basic idea is this: You have several contact tracks (momentary) switches, and want to connect them to the Central Station. You can then program the Central Station to do something when the contact track is activated (when a train goes over it). These contact tracks get connected to an S-88, and the S-88 gives each contact track a digital number, before sending the signal to the CS. With that number, the CS knows which contact track send the signal.
Feedback modules are among the oldest components in the Marklin digital system. With the the memory 6043 the Feedback module s88 introduced. And the Locomotives were capable of automatically triggering long switch/turnout sequences during operation.
Today the feedback modules can even do more tasks such as the track busy indicator in the Layout of a Central Station 2 or 3.
Which different feedback modules are there of Marklin?
The following versions of feedback modules are there:
I have a Marklin HO scale starter set from 1967 when I was a kid. I would like to expand for my grandchildren.
I understand the track has changed. Can I buy new track and transitional pieces to use the old track also?
Your starter set will have the track with a metal roadbed. We now refer to it as M-track.
The Marklin track types which are being used now are the K-track, and the C-track. Both track styles have transition track pieces, so that they can be used with each other, and also with the older style M-track.
Most people tend to use the C-track. It has a roadbed, similar to the M-track. It is very sturdy, and has double electrical connectors. This helps in getting reliable (digital) electric signals through the track.
The best layout award goes to Fleischmann and Roco this year. Their stand had a very long and shallow layout. Beautifully constructed, with two different scenes on each side and with a large double helix at one end to store trains.
The other side of the layout showed a different scene.
We get a lot of requests to show all the food we eat or see! So that you know we don’t just talk trains:
I love breakfast in Europe. Typically a rich variety of breads and rolls, all of them fresh from the bakery that morning. If we can get European trains and cars, and Starbux can imitate their coffees, why can’t we bake the same bread? Granted, this Euro bread does not stay fresh for 7 weeks like my Mrs. Bairds bread, but still…
They also bring you a small pot of coffee right to your table, so you can pour your own cup.
But it wasn’t all standard German Fare:
Again this year, LGB had a large “garden” layout, and beautiful displays showing off the new releases for this year. Where last years garden layout really looked like a garden, this year it was an arrangement through sometimes brightly colored patio blocks.
The Marklin large displays were loaded with new items. The Marklin/Trix/LGB stand was as usual the largest at the show. I missed the large Marklin layout. This year they used the display area again to show of the new CS3’s, in combination with locomotives on test stands.