Trix Twin : History of Advertisements
© Copyright 2011 – 2014 Garry Lefevre all rights reserved
This is PART 1 From 1935 to 1954 below
Looking at the changing style and content of advertisements for the Trix Twin Railway is both informative and interesting in showing how the early models evolved over 30 years from 1935 to 1965. It is my intention to continuously add to the advertisements shown here as new examples are discovered. If you have any copies of magazine or similar advertisements please send these to me so they can be added here. ( I am particularly short of ads for the 1940’s )
My thanks to Franz Nowack who responded to my above request so I can now show
the first ever advertisement for Trix model railways below :-
February 1935 !
The above appeared in a toy trade magazine, “Wegweiser” published in Pössneck in February 1935 promoting the March Trade Fair in Leipzig. The advertisement reads :
We will show at the Spring Fair in our enlarged exhibition
stand for the first time the new, electric table railway
A TRIX quality toy train and accessories, a
train designed for a range of customers, which
because of its exceptional novelty promises
to be a Xmas hit of first class proportion.”
In August 1935 Trix followed this up with a similar advertisement just before the autumn Trade Fair :
Note the method of connecting the current to the track is not the same as put into production.
There appears one square plug for 2 wires perhaps ?
The reference to PETERSHOF is the location of the TRIX trade stand at the exhibition.
The Vereinigte SpielwarenFabriken is the name of the company that owned and produced Trix.
AND in ENGLAND :-
Above is the first English advertisement I have which appeared in the December 1935 edition of Model Railway News.
As the importer Bassett-Lowke called these trains “Twin Train Table Railway” The name Trix was not used until 1936 in Britain.
Bassett-Lowke has been involved in developing the Bing Table Railway in the 1920’s. He was mainly an importer of model railways, commissioning manufacturers in Germany to make models for the English market, although his company made some models in the UK. Clearly he saw the Trix Express development as a continuation of the “00” Bing trains. As a marketing expert he latched onto using its main characteristic in its name i.e. “Twin” the unique dual running we are now all familiar with and the ability to mount it on a “Table Top”, not possible with his competitor; Hornby 0 Gauge. Probably to him the name “Trix Express” did nothing to promote the concept of these smaller model trains.
The price of the passenger set above was 35/- or £1-75 in modern money, the goods set 30/- or £1-50
In February 1936, Model Railways News showed the above advertisement.
Prices show wagons for just 8d that is about 3 1/2 pence today, coaches for 2s or 10 pence today !
The advertisement promises new stocks arriving soon.
In July 1936 new supplies were in the shops and the above advertisement appeared in the Model Railway News.
In November 1936 the two advertisements below appeared in the same edition of Model Railway News, but in different parts of the magazine
This is the first advertisement I have using the name “Trix Twin Railway”, even the catalogue for 1936 showing the new English outline trains used Bassett-Lowke’s preferred name “Twin Train Table Railway”
The new English outline stock was first shown to the public at the British Industries Fair in the Spring of 1936. A photo of this trade layout can be seen in my Exhibition layout section.
By the autumn stocks were available in sufficient quantities for the expected Xmas rush. Still Bassett-Lowke used the name Twins rather than Trix
Note the prices : goods wagons had now risen 50% in price from 8d to 1/-
Coinciding with the BIF Spring fair Trix launched the Portsmouth set. The advertisement above by Bassett-Lowke continued to emphasise the name Twin Trains. Now where in the ad is the word “Trix” used. Indeed the box label only shows “Trix Ltd” as the manufacturers with the emphasis on Twin Train and Bassett-Lowke.
In the autumn of 1937 Trix launched there own advertisement for the new Princess where the name used was only Trix Twin Railway
In December 1937 the full page advertsiment below appeared in The Model Railway News.
Above advertisement was shown for several months from January 1938 in Model Railway News
In the early part of 1938 Bassett-Lowke launched their own catalogue, showing mainly 0 gauge items but including one page for Trix models still called by them “Twin Trains”
A sale at Bassett Lowke in March 1938 is revealed in the advertisement below in The Model Railway News.
Below I am showing the detailed prices at this sale.
Wagons lits coaches for just 6 pence in modern money and a loco at just 50 pence !!
This really shows what inflation we have had in the past 73 years !
Note the number on the loco, ( under the cab window), appears to be 20 053 not 20 051 of the disc wheel loco.
In December 1938 the advertisement on the left appeared in several publications. The one on the right was in Practical Mechanics. For the first time Bassett-Lowke had given in and named these as TTR models but note underneath Twin Train Railway is still used.
After the outbreak of war, production ceased and the above advertisement appeared in the autumn of 1939. The loco was to be based on the successful Trix Express 2-4-2 with automatic coupling at both ends. At least one pre- production model was made.
In December 1939 the advertisement below appeared in The Model Railway News, quoting Neville Chamberlain
“ Keep the Wheels of Trade Revolving”
and what better way to do it than with Trix !
The Model Railway News of February 1940 carried the advertisement on the left.
Note the number of the compound is 1149.
This number was never used in production instead the number 1168 was used for both the black and reddish coloured models.
Thanks to Don Gibson of Australia for this advertisement
The Model Railway News of March 1942 carried the advertisement on the left.
5 goods wagons were being offered for 12/6 that’s about £20 today.
On left (middle), Bassett-Lowke were also offering to buy second hand model railways for cash.
A way of keeping the business alive during the war.
Thanks to Don Gibson of Australia for this advertisement
I do not have any photos of advertisements in this period. If you have any from magazines please send me a copy to add here
I do have the advertisement below from the USA :
In November 1953 Trix were promoting their new signal using optical plastic to project the changing light from the base out of the top of the mast.
1954 was the year of the conveyor and associated die cast wagons
January 1954 above
The above 2 page add appeared in the catalogue for a 1954 Model Railway exhibition in London
This small poster was used for shop display
At the end of 1954 the advertisement below appeared in November