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Modern European Outline 0 Gauge Trains: In the Style of Märklin

By Bryant Booth

The soon to be released Märklin styled BR 96 by HGM

0 gauge Märklin trains define the term tinplate. Toy trains of all metal, stamped sheet construction, with additional metal castings for detail, wire for piping and handrails, and even lithography for added small details,they well represented the brutish, industrial look of their German steam and electric prototypes. Märklin ceased production of 0 gauge trains over half a century ago in 1954, and today these rugged trains are eagerly collected and can reach some astronomical prices in auctions.

Given the resurgent interest in 0 gauge 3-rail trains here in the United States and the United Kingdom, I have often wondered why Märklin has not rejuvenated it’s 0 gauge line. Unfortunately this has not happened, but there is a small number of small companies that produce both beautiful replicas of Märklin’s 0 gauge trains and also exciting trains in the style of Märklin that were never produced by Märklin but have the look and feel of a Märklin 0 item.

My purpose in this article, the third on modern European 3-rail 0 gauge trains, is to review those companies producing Märklin replicas, and in particular, five companies, Hehr, Hobby Haas, Ritter Restorations, Selzer, and HGM, that are best known today for their replica trains and trains in the style of Märklin. I don’t attempt to catalog all the replicas that have been produced in the last three decades, rather I want to illustrate a good sample of their replica Märklin products. And I want to illustrate for the reader some of the great trains that are being made today in the style of Märklin, trains like the impressive BR 96 locomotive by HGM pictured above.

Click on the links below to view the individual sections of my article focusing on each of the manufacturers of Märklin-style replicas:


Hobby Haas

Ritter Restorations



Darstaed, Deák, Zanka, and B. Hess

Summary, Acknowledgements, and References

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