Contact: (805) 548-1894 |

Many, Many Thanks To:

Photos by Jamie Foster, more photos here.

Guinness Record Z-Scale Collection

Saturday, September 17, 2016
Guinness World Records Official Attempt
Largest Collection of Model Trains

5/9/17 Update: SLO Tribune article announces official Guinness record. The official final count was 2,956 unique Z-scale items.

Today's final count: 3160. That should be plenty to beat the standing record of about 1000.

On Saturday September 17th, an official attempt at the Guinness Book of World Records for Z Gauge Model Trains was held in San Luis Obispo at Beda's Biergarten, followed by a celebration at the San Luis Obispo Railroad Museum. The counting began at 10:00 am at Beda's Biergarten, 3230 Broad St. and at 2:00 pm the celebration continued to the San Luis Obispo Railroad Museum at 1940 Santa Barbara St.

San Luis Obispo resident and Museum Docent, Dr. Bernd Schumacher, who has been a collector for over twenty years, attempted to break the prior record of the world's largest model train collection. Bernd's engines and rolling stock are in Z gauge, ratio of 1-to-220, the world's smallest serially produced model railroad system. Marklin of Goeppingen, Germany, invented Z gauge (Marklin Mini-Club) in 1972, when it was introduced at the world-famous Nuremberg Toy Fair. Beda and Bernd provided some unique model railroad fun, where whole layouts fit into a regular briefcase. Beda served Guinness beer on tap as well as his entire regular food and drink menu starting at 10 am. A representative of Maerklin USA was on hand to answer questions about their amazing assortment of model railroads which they have been manufacturing in Germany since 1859.

The San Luis Obispo Railroad Museum showed movies all day of Maerklin trains along with a display of Maerklin Z Gauge Trains. Movies included a video of the Miniature Wunderland, the world's largest model railroad. Guinness and German food was also served at the Museum throughout the day.