I have long been fascinated with dioramas and little "scenes" that tell a story. The Hamburger Hafen Diorama from HMV I find particularly interesting as it captures perfectly a snapshot of a time long gone by. True, today shipping still continues on a vast scale via container and to a lesser degree bulk raw materials. However to me, there is a certain "romance" in this era that is absent today.
In those years, a ship might spend a week or more in transit to and from exotic ports of call returning with fruits, rubber, teak and all manner of goods that today are simply picked up on a quick trip to Rewe or Globus. Another point that interests me about this era is the huge differences in the workforce. Today's automation and computerization have reduced the number of jobs by the hundreds and thousands. For example, I work as a Flight Engineer on 747 freighters. A crew of 5 to operate the aircraft and a crew of perhaps 10 porters on the ground to uplift and offload the freight...and we can make a South America to Europe trip in 9 hours transporting nearly the same tonnage as the Schwann.
I have read with great interest the construction reports of members Wolfgang Lemm, Volkmar Adler, Lars W., and others. I wish to take a moment here and thank them and the other members for their help and assistance. In all my years of communicating on the internet (going all the way back to the BBS days!) the folks at Kartonbau.de are by far the friendliest and most helpful. I will not bore you with details they have covered in loving and exacting detail. But I will show features that I am going to add or complete in a manner that differs from the original kit instructions.
In any case, thank you for reading this far, and now on to the construction: From the research I've done, Mr. Peter Brandt ( Piet), did an amazing job of capturing the smallest details in this kit. I will attach some historical pictures I've found (which apologies, to the German members, I'm sure you are all aware of them) as we go along to illustrate how faithfully the scene is depicted and to show further details I wish to add.
Below, please see the original pristine, beautiful kit and some historical advertising images. The Hamburg3 image is from the collection of Mr. Thomas Nosske which has a wealth of documents, images and information on the Die Deutsche Reichsbahn-Gesellschaft and this era. His website is an important reference for the Hafenbahn and the Güterwagen. The ShellHamburg image is from the collection of David Levine another source of the beautiful and stylish art of this era. Lastly, Hamburg1 thru 5, are scans of original antique postcards I have collected from various shops in my travels throughout the beautiful towns of Germany. I find the postcards particularly fascinating as I feel like I can actually touch a small part of the Hamburger Hafen.