Finally after many years I managed to go to Herpa's Open Doors, the usual party that Herpa organizes every year for its customers and fans.
It's a party for young and old, so we all get together, full family. We arrive soon in the morning and we find parking very close to the event. However, three shuttle services were provided by as many exchanger parking nearby Herpa Headquarters. Once in front of the farm we see the parade of decorated trucks: all really astonishing, but we'll talk about it later.
After having passed the welcome point with the Herpa staff who welcome us along with some explanatory leaflets of the event we queue to visit the factory because I'm really curious to see how it works ... with the German precision at 9 am the staff open the gates !!! A red and white ribbon show us the path to follow and as soon as we enter, we find beautiful technical drawings of some vehicles and immediately under, the beautiful metal molds with their own plastic prints, the company staff next to each machine is available to explain and answer the questions of the curious people (only in German!).
The journey inside the company continues in the zone of wheel assembly, a machine that automatically combines tires, rims and axles, and then the manual one: a set of dimes that allow to assemble the wheels of an X5 manually, It was open to those who wanted to try it and my son also took advantage of it, in the end Herpa employee gave him the work done as a gift!
We continue to visit and arrive at injection machines, before as i told you we saw the molds and how they are made, really amazing! The machines are running and they spit bits of a tank container ...
Then we go to the painting area where an employee shows us that all the pieces are mounted on a cylinder then painted when they are rotating to avoid color drops, curious even the masks made with two pieces of copper that come into contact with the object and create the silhouette that should not be painted.
Between one station and the other, we walk through the shelves where the raw materials necessary for all the various workings are stored.
We are back in the molding area but this time we are at the end of the conveyor belt, here comes the rough parts and under the careful eyes of two Herpa employee are cleaned by the traces of the creating process and carefully checked, then placed in the boxes that will go to the assembly department.
The next step is in the dry printing department, the work is divided into two processes:
The first concerns everything that has to be chromed, the department is very cute full of green, the climbing plants in some places also envelop the machines! There is a Herpa employee that help customer to test the tampography machine: silver ribbon will finish the Herpa gray plastic logo, the chrome-plated piece realized by the visitor is given as a memory and of course my children do not miss the opportunity.
In the second department we find the actual tampography with 6-button tampography machines, even here one of the machines is in operation, visitors can admire the whole process. Herpa employee is printing a memorial trailer for the 25th anniversary, it is fascinating to see the printing process of the different colors above the trailer and slowly the drawing takes shape ... We will find out later why they are printing that trailer ...
A fast walk between the shelves where the plastics are stored, the room where the materials are recycled and then we enter the room where the airbrush is placed. Another nice Herpa employee shows us the use of the "Herpa airbrush" delivering to those who wanted a model of the MiniKit Herpa series decorated with the masks chosen by the visitor, could we miss this stage?
We go to the exit full of amazement for everything we have seen and a new emotion awaits us ... we are delivered the trailer we just saw before in the tampography room, then right on the door to leave the factory two kind Herpa assemblers put the Trailer on the chassis and deliver it to us perfectly packaged along with a coupon to buy the tractor in the shop at a special price ....
Still excited by the factory tour, we walk outside admiring all the decorated trucks parked along the road, one more spectacular than the other!
One looks like an aquarium with wheels, another tells the story of one's own family, another the story of a singer, or polar bears and so on, there is something for every taste, of course there are even all Herpa trucks numbered.
Below some tents and gazebo there are other major brands for scale 1/87 showing novelty and dioramas.
A tour at the shop to buy the latest news or what's missing and then why not miss a ride on the vehicles made available by MAN.
There is the Bayern Munich truck, the commemorative one, the one for exceptional transport, and the MAN truck equipped for firefighters, who play sirens and give smile at every child.
The day is over, the feet are in bad conditions but the smile and the happiness is on the face of all of us, the big and the little ones ... see you next year bye bye Herpa.
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