Berliner Dom

General view of model

This is a paper model kit published by Schreiber. It comes as a shrink-wrapped pack of sheets, 220mm by 320mm:

a cover sheet with a large colour photograph of the finished model and a smaller one of the original building on one side. The other side contains the major part of the building instructions in German.
one double-size sheet, centre folded. One half contains the remainder of the German building instructions, English building instructions, and several annotated constuction photographs, on two sides. The other half (numbered 1b) contains model parts, one of which has more construction photographs on it.
eight further double-size sheets numbered 2 - 9 containing model parts and some additional photographs. A few parts on sheets 8 and 9 have printing on both sides.
five sheets of 1mm cardboard for laminating sheets 1b, 3 and 4.

The model is in scale 1:300. The parts are organised into groups 1 to 43, with letter suffixes within each group. There are multiple instances of many of the parts; I made it 287 parts in all but I could well be a few out.

For my model, I scanned the pages and reduced them by 50%, making it approximately 150mm wide by 140 mm deep by 170mm high. This meant that I couldn't use the supplied strengthening cardboard, so had to provide my own 0.5mm thick.

The first impression was of superb printing quality, with excellent colour registration and as far as I could tell perfect registration on the double-sided pieces. The model is quite busy, with columns and pediments in 3D around most of the openings, though the main walls are a little flat. I was a little disppointed when I came to the roof and above, as I felt that the design quality fell off a little.

The first problem was that the main roof has several skylights simply printed on, but clearly meant to be raised in a hipped-roof style. I made instead a plausible (though speculative) raised version by fiddling with the shapes from the printed roof.


I was next rather unhappy about the square "pavilions" at the corners of the roof. These have arched openings, but the kit only has a single thickness for the outer wall (albeit printed on the inside as well), so the openings have no thickness. In addition, the only picture I could find on the web showing the interior of the larger (west) ones suggests that there is a coppered floor just below the foot of the openings, while the kit has them open down to the plinth on which the pavilion stands. I drew some new internal walls, arch linings and floor, and painted them from other parts of the kit.

Small Pavilion Large Pavilion

Finally, the very prominent lantern on the main dome didn't look right. In photographs of the real building, there appears to be an octagonal lantern, surrounded by a walkway, surrounded in turn by eight pillars supporting the tapering roof. In the model, the lower part is a simple cylinder with everything printed on the outside. I cut away the windows from this cylinder, laminated extra copies of the pillars inside and out for both strength and appearance, and placed a new octagonal lantern inside.

Original Lantern Replacement Lantern

Finished Model

Southwest view Southeast view
Northeast view Northwest view
View from the south east View from the south west
Dome and Lantern Central west arch