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Merten HO Scale Model Railroads & Trains

Located in Stuttgart, Germany, Merten was the predecessor of Preiser model figures. This company manufactures scale figures for model railroad layouts and produced hard plastic figures in the '50s. They began model train production in larger scales, then expanded to smaller scales.

Preiser continues to manufacture figures in the Merten style for all scales of modeling. The people they produce are popular with model railroad enthusiasts who like detailed layouts with buildings, landscaping, scenery, and vehicles. These layouts would not be complete without the scale people produced by Preiser.

Constructing a layout for model trains is called rail transport modeling. Aided by Merten figures, this hobby involves constructing entire railroad transport systems at a specific reduced scale. All the details of the system, including trains, track, roads, buildings, vehicles, signs, landscape, people, bridges, and natural features, are included in the layout.

Quick Facts

  • Model railroad layouts have their roots in the accessories offered by model train companies. The buildings, cars, animals, and signs offered by companies such as Lionel could all be purchased and set up along the model railroad track as part of a layout
  • Besides the usual railroad figures depicting railroad personnel, passengers, and other standard people, Merten products included specialty figures such as bums, seafarers, pirates, and stork nests
  • The world's largest model train layout is located in Flemington, New Jersey. Called Northlandz, the layout includes over 100 trains and 3,000 miniature buildings. The layout is housed in a 52,000 square foot building. It took its creator, Bruce Williams Zaccagnino, 16 years to build

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