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The premier German toy maker. Marklin pretty much invented the toy train. Marklin survives today, thriving on it's HO and Z scale trains. Pricey but detailed. I have a modest Z layout under construction, to sit on top of my computer desk, a nice little two level Alpine village.

Founded in 1859 by Theodor Marklin. Built live steam engines until, I think, the late 1950's or early 60's.

The Convertible can be a steam tractor, a vertical steam engine, or can be either a vertical or horizontal engine as part of a Meccano/Erector set.

From Tom in Colorado comes this beautiful 401, his father got it new in the 1930's. Came with the original box and all accessories. It is just a jewel, you really have to see this 401 in person to appreciate it. A terrific running engine, no knocks, rattles, and very little vibration. Tom said that it hadn't been fired for at least 25 years, yet all it needed was just a touch of oil, and it came to life. One of my greatest delights is seeing a long dormant engine return to life, and this one did not disappoint.

And just packed with Marklin detail. Note the little pin on the chain, attached to the burner. This locks into a hole on the base, to hold the burner in place when the model is assembled in either orientation.

It is unusual to fnd a Convertible that has all of the pieces, normally the odd bits get lost. This one even has the cap that covers the unused hole in the smokestack.
The gearing reduces the engine's speed to a manageable level when operating as a tractor. Chugs around very nicely in tractor mode.

4158 Compound
This venerable giant came from Chris in California, who had owned it since the 1930's. It has weathered the years quite well, with only a smattering of paint loss around the burner.

The 4158 came in three sizes, this one is the largest. It has some interesting details not seen on other Marklin engines. Note the condensate tray. It fits neatly into the three drain pipes, which include the boiler blowdown, cylinder exhaust, and a tray under the cylinders to catch anything dripping. The condensate tray also includes a resivoir for the feed pump.

Very detailed governer, though it is non functional. That sure looks like a Wilesco pressure gauge to me. Anyone have an original?

Interesting detail on the burner, two sizes of flame spreader.

When fired up, it speeds along with hardly a knock. Easily powers the dynamo. The switchbox is interesting. All the way to the left is off. First position illuminates the green lamp. Second position illuminates the red lamp. Third and fourth illuminate the lamp post. Just a terrific running engine, I fired it every day for the first four days I had it.

Note: if you're wondering about the dust on the models - my house dates back to 1778. I've had a running battle with dust in this house ever since I was a little boy. And the dust seems to be winning.

And how does it compare to the 16501? I thought you'd never ask... these are two large models.
That gray and black object in the background? It's a 1/32 scale remote control Type VIIC U-Boat, a kit from the late great 32nd Parallel company. About seven feet long. Steam isn't the only form of modeling I engage in. That model submerges, and occasionally comes back up. It's fun to take it to a nearby lake and get a rise out of the early morning fishermen, battle surfacing about ten feet away from them. Hey, these fish are taking extraordinary defensive measures.

(4158 reproduction)
Put into production briefly in the fall of 2004, the 16051 is a faithful reproduction of the old 4158 Compound engine.

With this brief reissue, Marklin has answered a few questions that have probably occurred to any model steam enthusiast - what if one of the old Nuremburg masterpieces were put back into production? How would it compare with the original? What would it cost?
It compares quite nicely. Doesn't have the spun metal parts of the original, but that is a costly and very labor intensive task.

What would it cost? 999 euros, or in the bruised dollar days, around $USD1,250.00. Not too bad considering that a mint condition original would probably sell in the 3 to 5 thousand dollar range, and badly damaged examples routinely bring $1,000.00 .

Firing notes: The dual vaporising burner lights off nicely, although it doesn't produce the huge fingers of flame that a Doll or Falk burner will. Give it about five minutes to heat up. Pressure gauge actually works. It clacks and clunks a bit when running, but really cranks on the speed. The whistle is LOUD, and really lets out a plume of steam, so much so that the handle is a bit too close to the escaping steam. Your fingers will get a bit toasty working the whistle. Feed pump works as advertised - set to the center position, and it empties the feed tray fairly quickly. At first I thought the burner ran dry far too quickly, but then checked the time and realized that fifteen minutes had passed far too quickly.

Overall, the quality of the model is more than up to Marklin's usual standards. Tight, and nary a scratch or flaw anywhere.

Some of the nicer touches... the same black paint with gold pinstripes as found on the 1930's models. An exact reproduction of the old Marklin pressure valve. Gray porcealin with white specks on the boiler base.

After firing a few times, it isn't getting any quieter, but I also found it powers a pair of Jensen 1.5v generators quite nicely. A fairly powerful engine for it's size.

And for once, I have the original box for this model.

The smaller, dynamo and lamp equipped horizontal. Base is near perfect. When I got this engine, it had no dust or grime anywhere. Except for a muddled paint spot near the burner (spilled alcohol?), it looked like it was fresh out of the box. Probably late manufacture
  Cylinder detail Lamppost

ID courtesy of Robin. This engine was originally attached to a base, with a dynamo and switch panel. Also had a manometer on top, where this engine now has only a rusty plug.
Not in the greatest of condition, but most of the important parts are there. Feed pump under the cylinder. Badge missing from the boiler, but present on burner door. No burner.

From the Livingston, OK auction. A nice, intermediate sized vertical. Note the whistle sticking out of the side of the boiler. That was put in place to fill the hole made by the missing drain valve, by the previous owner. I have a spare big thread valve, if I can find it...

Relatively intact, but relatively in need of work. Slide valve is frozen right now, smokestack and burner missing. Speckles of white paint that are coming off, with some persuasion. Sight glass intact, and all other attachments present and intact. Might run some day, boiler looks steam tight.
Update: A very kind ebay seller sent me an extra part they found that had been with a large Doll overtype I had purchased from them. It turned out to be the correct burner for this engine. Small world...

Not sure about that ID - came from a Marklin reprint catalog, with a drawing of the engine. Missing top of the smokestack and burner, otherwise complete. Boiler is in particularly good condition. That black stuff is slowly coming off the base - have to be careful not to remove any paint in the process.

Paint is remarkably good on this one. Came with a burner, slightly different from the ones that the 4095 and 4097 had. Missing sight glass, and two valve bodies, for the whistle and the drain under the sight glass. These take a large valve. Had one fabricated ,but would love to get original valve bodies. Interesting paint detail on the flywheel mount.
Another example, in black and gray livery. Steam line needs replacement, but otherwise complete

Overtype, 4156?
Somewhat neglected, but for the most part, complete. Missing the whistle and smokestack. Vague remnants of the original paint on the base: black with yellow speckles. The cylinder is a bit different from the typical Marklin fare: it is a single action slide valve. Like the 4136, it has a true flue through the boiler, venting out the smokestack.

Horizontal, unidentified
A smaller model. Single action slide valve, like the overtype shown above. No logo on the boiler. Appears to be the correct burner. Smokestack and sight glass missing. Base is dark green with black border.

Waterfall Toy.

Something is clogging up the pump, but otherwise quite clean.

In terrific condition, complete with proper counterweight, and burner.
Front, with wood base someone attached the model to. Cylinder detail.

4097. A newer arrival, in rather unclean condition. But, it's all there, including burner. This one came with the rare Marklin lamppost. It's freestanding, not attached to the base. Whistle is loose, so this one is due for a little boiler repair.

Unidentified, this one came out of the UK. I bought it largely to get the dynamo for my 4130. Somewhat larger. Interesting detail on the cylinder. Missing the steam line, and part of the pressure valve. Has the Marklin logo embossed on the side of the boiler, like the 4130.
  Boiler front detail. I have the drain valve, it's just not mounted here.

4097. Most of it is there. Cylinder assembly donated from the hopeless Electric. Might actually run someday. Dynamo does produce voltage. Dunno what to do with that base, though. It's a real mess. Update - will probably be putting this one up for sale soon, minus dynamo which I need for another Marklin restoration. Anyone have any interesting trades?

Current condition - on it's way to being clean. In as - delivered condition. Yuck!

Electric. Pretty much hopeless and a source for parts. Boiler is badly dented, and threads stripped out when someone jammed a large screw in the holes. Cylinder now resides on my 4097.

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