Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Discuss model railway topics and news that do not fit into other sections.
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SRman
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby SRman » Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:57 am

While I agree it is a tourist attraction, I wouldn't go so far as to say it's a toy, or that it is aimed solely at 'Mr Average tourist'. It works on more levels than that.

The Knuffingen airport section of Miniatur Wunderland is worth a chunk of time watching it on its own. The operations are clearly based on real airports, within the usual constraints of models, with space being compressed somewhat. Sure, the arrivals and departures of a giant bee or the Millenium Falcon are not based on real events, but are examples of the great sense of humour that also features in many parts of the layouts.

There are also many amusing cameo scenes in there, and some very real modelling has taken place if you examine some of the buildings and scenes. Take a good look at the Vatican buildings: they really did go out and look at those, photographing them and measuring (roughly), before converting the data into something more modellable.

There are features definitely aimed at children, but there are also a few naughty bits definitely not aimed at the kids.

It is worth at least one visit, in my opinion. I enjoyed it and will definitely go again if I get the opportunity.

b308
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby b308 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 4:01 pm

TheDuke71000 wrote:"Miniature Wonderland" is a computer controlled automated toy train set on a large scale. Virtually all products are "out of the packet".


You need to do your homework better I'm afraid. It's not a toy train, it's a Model Diorama that happens to have railways, together with ships, airplanes, road vehicles and much else. It goes way beyond a "toy train", to call it that is an insult to those who make and maintain it.

Yes it uses a computer (several in fact) to control the moving parts of the model but if you look at the modelling of the buildings and scenery you will find them absolutely stunning and, last time I looked, you couldn't get HO scale model of St Marks Square in Venice, to name but one of the hundreds (thousands?) of scratchbuilt models, so perhaps not "out of the packet", eh?! The trains are there to take you on a journey through Europe and beyond, they are a means to an end, the fact they use commercial models is one of expediency, modern Continental HO scale trains are reliable and very accurate so there's no need to hand build or kit build like Pendon used to have to do.

As SRman points out it works on far more levels than purely as a tourist attraction. The level of modelling is easily on a par with the best I've seen at exhibitions in the UK and from professional builders. I spent a good 15 minutes just looking at St Marks Square, just at the modelling (note there are no trains there!), they do a book which gives you the background to it all and how stuff is made, they have had to solve many problems to make it as realistic (yes, realistic, it's a model, not a toy) as possible and whilst they haven't got everything right (water still looks wrong when used in models, though at the moment that's all they can use if they want to run the boats) they've managed to do many things most of us modellers haven't!

I have to question whether you have actually seen it in person as your comments don't match with the reality which is one of a superb piece of modelling that stands easily on a par with Pendon and is far better than any other "commercial" model I have seen.

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

b308
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby b308 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:15 pm

What you have said contradicts what I know... However I am not prepared to argue with you, you go on believing what you believe and I'll do the same...


In the meantime, as a railway modeller, I'll continue to enjoy it for what it is, a superb example of modelling.

Which is all that matters really... :)

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SRman
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby SRman » Sun Jun 16, 2019 2:15 am

Yes, the trains are automated. The road vehicles on the Faller system are also computer controlled, and far more sophisticated than the off-the-shelf items. Likewise the planes and road vehicles at the airport. They have developed their own control circuits and interfaces. At least one of the ships is radio controlled so does not come under the "computer-controlled" banner, it has to be manually driven by a staff member.

I am going to continue disagreeing with you here, TheDuke71000. You are welcome to your opinion, but I would suggest that most railway modellers will still enjoy a visit to Miniatur Wunderland. It is entertainment, but there is a lot of serious modelling that has gone into it, as well as some gimmicky things. Many of our home layouts have the odd gimmick too, just for fun. Would you also suggest people not watch Top Gear because it isn't really a serious motoring show? That also was done for entertainment (and yes, there are a lot of people who don't like Top Gear, especially the newer ones, but that's not the point here). Do you object to Lego or Meccano items because they aren't "serious modelling"? The same principle applies: do we not enjoy something simply because it is classed as entertainment rather than a serious representation of the real thing? Do we not enjoy it because someone else says it isn't serious modelling? :)

Broaden your horizons. Let a little fun into your life. I do. Many others in this forum do too.

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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby brit-in-bama » Sun Jun 16, 2019 5:03 pm

I agree with most of the posters above who support the notion that this is more than just a train-set, but if I really wanted to get pedantic with the duke, I would simply point out that if you use absolutely "any" "out of the box parts" that includes any shafts, nut and bolts, or plastic or brass sheets on your models, then you are not a "railway modeler" in the true sense of the term, true scratch building would start with iron ore and oil to build your parts, so lets stop this pointless argument, railway modeling is different for each of us, many of us do use out of the box parts (as you call them) simply because we lack the time and skills to make them ourselves, time is another constraint, and yes Miniature Wunderland is a wonderful creation, and gives us goals that we can try and achieve in a smaller way, it is a tourist attraction, but there are many fine models and modelers who not only create stuff but maintain it also, so lets put this to rest now, you have your "opinion" and others have theirs, live and let live, and in my opinion anything that resembles a train moving on steel rails is a model railway, it may just be the beginning of something that may one day challenge one of your own creations,

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PanzerJohn
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby PanzerJohn » Sun Jun 16, 2019 11:44 pm

As soon as I hear "runs to a timetable" I have visions of nothing moving for ages and moving on to the next layout.

b308
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby b308 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:51 am

I assume he'll speed up the clock, that's the usual way if you follow a real timetable. Each to their own, I suppose, I don't like such constrictions when I'm playing with my toy trains and it also stops me talking to the people who visit exhibitions I am at and want to talk about my layout! They pay the money to allow me to show my layout so the least I can do is chat to them...



Just picked up someone mentioned the lack of a UK section. Well from my visit last year it seems they are in the process of building it. Not sure what scale, though people have been mixing OO and HO scale models for as long as they've been around (60+ years) with only rivet counters objecting...

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SRman
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby SRman » Mon Jun 17, 2019 10:04 am

b308 wrote: snipped ...


Just picked up someone mentioned the lack of a UK section. Well from my visit last year it seems they are in the process of building it. Not sure what scale, though people have been mixing OO and HO scale models for as long as they've been around (60+ years) with only rivet counters objecting...



I believe they are working on the UK section, and there are other longer term plans. Eventually there may even be an Australian section. The Italian section is currently the newest, I think. Incidentally, while I was there, I spotted Hogwarts Castle and set of BR mark 1s running around. :D

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luckymucklebackit
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby luckymucklebackit » Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:12 pm

TheDuke71000 wrote:
I think you have totally missed the point I'm making, which was in response to previous postings that made the assumption that Miniature Wonderland was a model railway. Which it did start out claiming to be, or possibly you are unaware of its History ! Don't forget I've been living in Germany until recently and via the two Model Raiwlay Clubs I was a member of, got quite a bit of the "low down". So I will re-iterate that it is a computer automated toy train set aimed at "Mr Average Tourist", and as you have noted is now moving into various other dioramas much of which is "bought in". For the sole purpose of increasing tourist numbers. In other words it has absolutely no appeal to me as I'm interested in Model Railways, and not this sort of commercial tourist attraction !

The Duke 71000
.



Dear, dear, dear - this is the type of RMwebesque railway model snobbery that gets the hobby a bad name. OK I get it that "The Duke 71000" does not care for Miniature Wonderland, his preference, but to describe it as a toy train set is a terribly unfair categorisation, it is a model, it has railways so it is a model railway layout. This attitude is especially misplaced in a forum where there is a wide range of skills and capabilities from the absolute beginner to the experienced and highly skilled modeller. He holds his current layout "Basingstoke 1958-67", as a a Model Railway not an automated toy train set, news just in - Miniature Wonderland at least uses the correct scale track (for a continental layout), not the incorrect narrow gauge track used on Basingstoke.

Jim
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Bufferstop
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Jun 18, 2019 5:08 pm

TheDuke71000 wrote:
To put it in context the opposite end of the spectrum is Pendon (near Didcot). This too in my opinion is no longer a Model Railway just a wonderful Diorama. Why? Because the trains are now secondary to the scene and are also now automated, mainly because Guy Williams has passed on.

It was Guy Williams' stated intention to capture the early 20th century scene in the Vale of the White Horse, through the medium of a model railway. It was always intended to be a model of the scenery with a railway running through it. I met and talked with the late Derek Naylor (Aire Valley Railway) there when he was operating Madder Valley, and he was quite sure that they were still following Guy's grand plan. Automation of some sort was always intended so that the modellers could tell to the visitors the story of the scene and it's realisation. Derek without an ID badge, told the visitors, that his own layout was called the Aire Valley Railway, and I said then you must be Derek Naylor, I was the first visitor who knew of him prior to visiting Pendon. He was quite pleased to be recognised and talked to me for some time between his operating turns.
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Bufferstop
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Jun 18, 2019 5:21 pm

@ luckymucklebackit
OK Jim - you've made your point about the Forum's ethos, now can I say don't let this get to personalities, which I believe is also a feature of "RMwebesque".
Knock it on th'ead mate.
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b308
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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby b308 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:42 pm

TheDuke71000 wrote:[But in regard to the commercial situation in respect of Hamburg. My personal reasoning is that while this is a great attraction for tourists it does NOT help those who wish to model a real railway, or to make the effort to learn new construction skills. It therefore, effectively only panders to the commercial manufacturers.


I really don't follow your reasoning there. Firstly the majority of model buildings on the layout are scratchbuilt scale models of REAL PLACES, as I pointed out earlier, so it does not in any way "pander to commercial manufacturers" or "does not help those who wish to model a "real" railway", in fact it shows what can be done and encourages people to try themselves by showing you can make models of "real places". In addition they have the people who build many of the models and those who do the servicing of the layout on show (albeit behind glass windows!) so you can stand and watch them work if you wish. personally I'd find that rather un-nerving but they seem to cope. Also the books they sell also show how much is actually hand built and videos online show their methods so the rest of us can follow suite if we wish, or just admire how they solved some strange problems.

All in all, between the layout, the books and the videos they actively encourage people to get out there and model and I am sure that many people will have taken up the hobby after visiting the layout.

Of course it's a tourist attraction, without the general, non modelling, public visiting them could not have done what they have. But to knock it simply for that reason completely misses what it is, how it's made, and the power it has to make people wonder and then have a go themselves. With respect, 71000, I would lay odds that if we did a survey of people who saw your layout and those who saw MW the latter would have encouraged many more to take up railway modelling than yours.

I think you need to take off that chip you seem to have on your shoulder and view MW for what it is... A superb piece of modelling.

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Re: Miniature Wunderland - Hamburg

Postby Bufferstop » Sat Jun 22, 2019 11:59 pm

OK Duke you've made your response, you've stated your position, the same can be said for b308 and Luckymucklebackit, the thread doesn't seam to be leading going any where so lets finish it here.

John W
aka Bufferstop.
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