1970 / 1971 Catalog

The 1970-71 Minitrix catalog would be the last catalog printed under the ownership of Ernst Voelk KG. The following year, the new owner of Trix (and the Minitrix product line) would be Mangold.

The 1970-71 catalog is interesting because it shows all of the assets of the Minitrix product line, a picture taken at the moment of sale to Mangold. Of course, the actual ownership of the various tooling used to manufacture the trains would not be shown, helping to preserve some of the mystique of the Minitrix line. Also visible was the handiwork of Willy Ade, who had left Trix in 1968.

Train Sets

Two starter sets with transformer were illustrated, both using the classic T3 tender locomotive.  These sets were also available without the power supply.

There were an additional six deluxe sets for the German, Swiss, Dutch and American markets:

Track Sets

As with many European model train manufacturers (especially the Germans), packages of track were sold that allowed for an orderly expansion of the model railroad layout. These sets would be combined with the track included in the starter set for form a larger layout.  Also promoted on this catalog page, the new 9001 track planning book (lower left):

Also new in the 1970-71 Minitrix catalog were three complete model railroad layouts.  These types of layout briefly enjoyed currency in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s in both N-Scale and Z-Scale.  Presumably, they were meant to address the notion that building a layout in small scales such as N and Z was a challenge to many people.  The fact that they were only offered for a brief period of time also indicates that there was little demand for such items.  Also, in the European market, firms such as Kibri and Noch offered layout forms that also could be used.

Locomotives

Steam Locomotives

The 1970-71 Minitrix catalog showed the four familiar steam engines:

In addition to the 0-6-0T T3 tank locomotive were the very popular Class 01 Pacific type of the DB and the very popular Pennsylvania Railroad B-6sb 0-6-0 and 4-6-2 Pennsy K4 Class Pacific-type.  In the North American market, the two Pennsylvania locomotives enjoyed a great following and were subsequently issued in a number of other railroad names.  Both of these locomotives are sufficiently unique to the Pennsy, but nobody seemed to be all that bothered by the inaccurate names since both were reliable runners.

Electric Locomotives

The 1970-71 catalog included eight electric-type locomotives for the German DB, Swiss SBB, the Dutch NS and the French SNCF railroads:

Diesel Locomotives

The 1970-71 Minitrix catalog featured six diesel locomotives in a variety of livery.  New to the product line were switching diesels (a DB V60 and Belgian Railway Class 73), an industrial diesel and a NOHAB double end diesel (in Belgian, Luxembourg and Danish livery). Also illustrated were both DB Class V160 and Class V200’s, along with a British Rail Class 27

The North American diesels got a page of their own, along with a “teaser” shot of a Union Pacific “Big Blow” gas turbine. The Minitrix catalog shows the venerable F-units in four different liveries (Santa Fe, Pennsylvania, Baltimore & Ohio and Union Pacific). New to the Minitrix line was a General Electric C+C diesel in Santa Fe livery:

The new Santa Fe diesel is the source of some consternation on a variety of counts.  First, the Santa Fe did not have U30C’s, but they did have a different version, the streamlined U30CG.  On the other hand, the Santa Fe did have U28CG’s that looked like the locomotive illustrated to the left.  The road number 576 was not used until the 1980’s. In previous years, there had been a Minitrix U28C in several different liveries.  So in the 1970-71 Minitrix catalog,  the matter of the six-axle American diesel was in a state of flux, since Minitrix would later issue a proper U30CG.

Missing as well from the catalog was the well established Fairbanks-Morse H12-44 switcher, part of earlier Minitrix product lines.

Diesel Rail Cars

Also in the 1970-71 Minitrix catalog, the venerable VT98 self-propelled rail car, in two liveries, DB and Austrian Railway:

Passenger Cars

The 1970-71 Minitrix catalog showed the full array of passenger cars which the company had offered for several years. Only the 3009, a 1st Class express coach was new, albeit a new paint scheme, not new manufacturing tooling:

The American passenger cars got their own page, with three different cars, a coach, a Vista-Dome and an observation.  Most were available in Santa Fe, Union Pacific, Pennsylvania or Baltimore & Ohio liveries.  Curiously, the Vista-Dome car was not available in Santa Fe livery; odd since the Santa Fe Vista-Dome was the likely prototype of the model:

Freight Cars

The 1970-71 Minitrix catalog included three pages of European freight cars.  On those three pages were eight new two-axle cars, each of a unique design that meant new tooling for each car, not just a new paint job on an existing car. Likewise, the 3160 crane with a boom tender car was new tooling also:

North American prototype freight cars filled up the next five pages of the 1970-71 Minitrix catalog.  There were 19 different cars (only one the result of new tooling) in a variety of liveries for a total of 57 different cars:

The balance of the Minitrix 1970-71 catalog was devoted to their track pieces, electrical items (power supplies, relays, distribution strips and controls) and two pages describing the Trix metal construction sets:

The metal construction sets had been the initial product line of Trix. So, it seems appropriate that the line should be included in the Minitrix catalog even if it wasn’t directly related.

The Ernst Voelk ownership spanned from the troubled times of 1938 to the equally unsettled times of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s.  There were some peculiar aspects about the transfer of ownership from the Bings to Ernst Voelk, but Herr Völk led the Trix company into an interesting leadership role in the model railroad industry, in the early days of what would become N-Scale. Völk died in 1969 and the Trix company seemed ready for a leadership change, which would come in the form of Mangold’s purchase in 1971. They had come a long way from stamped metal construction sets.

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