Review of the Schreiber model "Hamburger Michel"
(St. Michaelis church in Hamburg, Germany)
by Oliver Michael

michelkl.jpg - 12063 Bytes

Designed by Przemyslaw Tabernack
Scale: 1:300
Size (L x W x H) 28 x 19 x 44 cm
15 sheets
Schreiber difficulty class 2 (in a range from 0 to 3).

To begin with this: The Hamburger Michel is without any doubt a fantastic model. It is very detailed but not overloaded. The colours are very natural, especially the brick and the verdigris are splendid. Even the churchyards design (the models platform) is absolutely authentic. The cardboard can be handled very well. There are some tricky ideas of how to model things. But let me deepen these impressions.

The detail richness is not too overwhelming, but when you look at the model, you won't find a square inch of flat wall. The shadow effects of the wall's structure is very impressive and reflects the models natureness, even and above all when you look from a near point of view. Some of these structural details are not too easy to fold and glue. You have to work very exact, especially in terms of folding.

Some tricky details are to be handled. This starts with some kind of very small columns with a diameter of about 2 mm. Further I haven't understood how to place the upper part of the roof around the tower without bending the roof almost too much. A column of about 10 cm length with a diameter of 5 mm throughout the upper part of the tower reaching the helmet is even for experienced card modelers an unexpected challenge. A very good idea of the design is shown by the dome. A sphere this size usually raises most of the problems in cardmodeling. The slices of the dome are strengthened by small card slices, that are hidden from outside. So it was no problem to stick the domes slices together.

The model has on big disadvantage: The building instructions are not at all appropriate to this kind of model. The textual instructions consists only the sentence: "The parts of the model are to be constructed in numerical order". But this in five languages. In addition to that you have about eight sketches, where the parts are entirely showed. Well, not entirely .. One small indomitable part (in 4 issues) is not mentioned at all. And as it is exactly rectangular shaped, however very long and very small, you cannot see for what it is designed. In some cases the modeller wants to have some hints, in which succession he has to work and concerning smaller parts on what direction they have to be glued to the rest. So you have to guess, how to place the decorations on the front portal.

One further lack has to be mentioned. The designer was very busy with designing the model. Just in one case he was somewhat lazy. The roof's lower edge surrounds the whole roof at the transition to the outer walls. This edge is decorated with a long vertical bar. This has to follow all the plenty corners and edges that make this model so nice (see above). Unfortunately you don't have any hint where to fold this bar. There are no lines drawn. Too late I realized, that almost the same shape was designed at a decoration bar at the bottom of the wall. So I took a paper sheet and tried to find out where to fold the decoration bar. Why didn't the designer do this ?

But nevertheless, when you finished with building the Hamburger Michel, you will not be embarassed by it. It will really be a highlight in a collection of architectural card models.

PS: After finishing the Hamburger Michel I started to build L'Instant Durable's Chartres Cathedral. It seems to me somewhat boring to cut out such big parts and to have so much flat wall. I suppose this to be a much more simple model.

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This page was created by:
Saul H. Jacobs M.Ed.
Microcomputer Technology
Pima Community College
Tucson Arizona