When I was very young my mother made this exact train for our family to enjoy. She set it on the mantle with explicit instructions not to touch.
She stopped making it after a couple of years, but I still remembered it and got the directions from her.
For the past 5 years we have been making it with our kids.....and yes, they are allowed to touch:) On New Years, they take the end of a butter knife and smash it to bits for yummy enjoyment.
Have a great day.