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Queen of the Midway, the 20th Anniversary Version Wilde Maus from the folks at Faller® Gmbh in Germany is a beautiful, marvelously detailed, illuminated, motorized, challenging and complex HO (1/87) Scale model kit. Not for the faint of heart, even experienced model builders will need patience, a steady hand and between thirty and forty hours to complete this worthy project. This being said, the result is something any modeler will be proud to display whether on a shelf, as a focal point in a model amusement park or as an accent to a model train layout. Fit and finish is exceptional and the instructions are, with a few notable exceptions, quite good and must be read carefully and followed in the correct sequence. The notable exceptions or omissions we found are as follows:

 

  1. The parts required to mount the decorative flourishes assembled in Steps “Q” through “U” on page 13 of the manual are omitted from the instructions. You will need to use Part# 8/37 to attach these flourishes and standards point to point to the main structure. Slip mount, DO NOT glue, Part# 8/37.
  2. In Step “V” on Page 13 of the manual three catwalks and two ladders magically appear. Assembly of these parts is not previously indicated. You will need to attach (2) Part# 10/11 Catwalks lengthwise underneath and to the inside of the (2) Part# 4/30s which were added in Step F on Page 3 and Step I on Page 5. Next, attach (1) Part# 10/10 Catwalk connecting the two horizontal pins at the top of each Part# 4/30. This Catwalk runs behind the Wilde Maus illuminated sign which will be mounted in Step H on Page 14. Finally, cut (2) ladder sections at 67mm and attach between Catwalks 10/11 and Catwalk 10/10.

Here are a few other helpful hints which might enhance your building experience:

  1. Carefully check all the part racks for broken parts prior to assembly. There are many very small and delicate parts in this kit and you may discover some breakage. Any breaks you may find are much easier to repair prior to removing the parts from the racks.
  2. We recommend using Faller® quick drying Super Expert Cement. Even if you ALWAYS replace the cap and clean the applicator stem after each use you will still find that the very thin metal applicator will occasionally clog. When this occurs, and it will occur, use a match or butane lighter to, briefly, apply heat to the applicator tip to unclog the stem. Faller Glue is available through our site.
  3. Faller® Acid and Resin Free Oil, for oiling bearing points is available on our site.
  4. When building the several stair assemblies attach the first and last step pieces first. Attach the remaining step pieces using tweezers.
  5. The chain drive system, assembled in Steps F through I on Page 11 is prone to jamming if the chain has too much slack. You may need to remove several links to get the chain as tight as possible.
  6. The three cascading plastic illuminated signs will not like to adhere to the Faller, or any other standard modeling, glue. Use a Gel Super Glue, instead. It works quite well. Make sure your wire cable runs are correct and in place, then mount the signs, using Super Glue and the Spring Loaded Binder Clips to hold the signs in place as the glue sets, as the final step of assembly.
  7. Also use Super Glue for assembling the train cars.
  8. If you intend to incorporate the beautiful Preiser or Faller scale model figures with this model, especially train car passengers with raised arms, be sure and check to make sure that their arms clear the various obstacles around the track circuit prior to gluing the figures into the cars. A huge variety of Roller Coaster Figures are available on our site.
  9. For power, this European model requires either a conventional model train transformer or a difficult to locate 16VAC power supply neither of which is included by Faller®. 16VAC Power Supply Part# 163053 is available on our site. Good luck finding it anywhere else.

You should consider these tools and materials to aid you in your project:

  1. A small file, such as our Blue Cushion Emery Board, for filing off any excess plastic remaining after you have removed parts from the rack. You can also use this for removing any excess brass from the handrailings.        
  2. A set of Mini Side Cutters, a sharp pair of scissors and a small Modelers Knife, for removing parts from the part racks. Scissors are also effective for removing excess plastic burrs, burrs from the brass railings and for cutting the screen material used for the perimeter fencing.
  3. (2) to mount singly or (6) to mount in one step ¾” Spring Loaded Binder Clips. Available from any office supply outlet, these are very helpful for holding the three plastic lighting strips, featured with this model, in place while their glue sets.
  4. Scotch Tape for holding some parts in place.
  5. Super Glue for the illuminated signs and train car assembly.
  6. Tweezers for handling small parts.
  7. You may want to have a Soldering Iron, small diameter Shrink Tubing, and Small Gauge Wire on hand for assembling a lighting wiring harness. Instructions for illuminating this model are provided.

Conclusion

The incredibly detailed Wilde Maus provides a facinating model building exercise for the experienced modeler. Once completed, the immense satisfaction you will feel as you watch the four cars scooting around the circuit and trundling up the chain lift will definately justify the patience and dedication you have invested in this worthy modeling project. We are aware of no more intricate, detailed, challenging or ultimately rewarding motorized scale model roller coaster product on the market today.

Though an age suitability rating is not suggested by the manufacturer, due to some very small parts and overall complexity we have rated this product for ages 12 and above.


We are interested in hearing about building experiences with this model and would like to share your impressions with other visitors to our site.

*Categories are rated on a scale of from one to ten where applicable and reflect only the opinions and experiences of our staff. We provide these ratings only as a guideline to aid you in your product choices. Your experience may vary.

 

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