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Archive for April 10th, 2021

Unterlenningen railway station, (Standard Type IIa)

I’ve been feeling the need for some variety; wagons are very interesting but you can have too much of a good thing, and thoughts have turned to making a building.

I haven’t made any buildings for a while now; the tiny model railway I’m hoping to fit into my apartment doesn’t allow much space for such luxuries as townscapes, but I think I can get away with a smallish station. Fortunately there’s a common prototype from the region the Körschtalbahn is supposed to inhabit, snappily entitled the “Einheitsbahnhof (Württemberg) Typ IIa.” (“Standard railway station (Württemberg) Type IIa”).

Strangely, German railways didn’t really go for standardisation. Apart from anything else the first time the various states, duchies and in some cases, independent cities actually joined together in any meaningful way was at the start of the German Empire in 1871, and all the states had their own ways of running railways even after that. In Württemberg the state government took a break between revolutions in 1887 and decided they couldn’t just assume private companies would build railways to sparsely populated and hilly regions, so they started to plan and build their own.

Unusually for Germany they also decided that it would keep costs down if they used a set of standard station designs. According to Wikipedia there were three, a small single storey building for small stations (Einheitsbahnhof IIa), a slightly larger, two floored version for intermediate stations (IIb) with an apartment for the stationmaster, and a larger three storied version to grace the platforms of more important places, known as the IIc.

Einheitsbahnhof IIc in Owen, (Pronounced “Auen”, don’t ask me I just live here).

The entirely fictional Körschtalbahn is right on the edge of Württemberg and is pretty much the sort of enterprise that the phrase “minor railway” was invented for, so the only way it would exist is if the Württemberg State Railways built it. Having agreed to do so and probably regretting it the next day, the state would have sought to keep all costs down and the grandest of stations would be unlikely to have anything more than a type IIa building. At 8.5m by 7m (ca 27′ by 22′) this would be about 155mm by 127mm which I think I can fit on the baseboard, although I’ll have to assume the goods shed that is normally attached has been demolished or possibly built elsewhere.

Of course I’ll have to go and take more photographs of the real thing, which means another cycle tour to a few rural railway stations.

It’s a tough life, but someone has to do it…

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