It's a simple, down-home recipe.
Take one million matchsticks, 35 gallons of glue, and a patient artist named Pat Acton, who had 3,000 hours on his hands.
Mix it all together and, voila, you have the latest attraction at Ripley's Times Square -- a 22-foot-long, 9-foot-high, 750-pound choo-choo made almost entirely out of something you'd keep in your pocket to light a candle.
Indeed, this train, dubbed "Plane Loco," is bound for glory. But no smoking please, for obvious reasons. It's highly flammable.
"This train is an incredible work on its own, but the fact that Pat built it one single matchstick at a time is what visitors will find truly mind-boggling," said Edward Meyer, Ripley's VP of Exhibits and Archives.
This behemoth takes its place alongside a 15-foot gorilla made entirely of car tires, a stunning portrait of Frank Sinatra rendered in butterfly wings, the world's largest collection of authentic shrunken heads and other bizarre Ripley's goodies.
In true steampunk style, this train has wings, and can theoretically fly, though it came to Manhattan from Acton's Iowa studio by truck in 70 separate pieces.
When kids visit, they can climb aboard into the engineer's cabin, pull the throttle, and work the breaks.
The train covers a good portion of Ripley's main floor, nearly dwarfing the life-sized statue of Robert Wadlow, who, at 8-foot-11, was the world's tallest man.
Don't let the big train overshadow the rest of the "Odditorium," as it is called. After wandering around, HuffPost Vine artist Chaz Smith managed to have some fun in "The Black Hole."