Vincent Van Gogh – Flemish trains

Flemish trains HO  in the 40s and 60s

I treni Fiamminghi

To know about the artist

To know about the artist

Peter Bruegel Il Vecchio - Giochi di fanciulli
                                                                        Peter Bruegel the Older

(Written by P.G.)

micio van gogh

The Flemish countries were not as prolific in producing miniature trains than they were in the art, especially in painting.

Rubens Mercurio e Argo

The first Flemish train in scale HO / OO was produced in Brussels by ELEC in September 1946.
It is sold at first only in complete packaging

Jan Bruegel de Velours
                                                                                      Jan Bruegel de Velours

fig 01 Set Elec -then at singles pieces.
The tracks have a base in milled wood, the rails are made of brass, the locomotive

fig 02 loc Elec

has a mechanism similar to the two axes of the series 800 of Maerklin, but the inversion system is like to the first Conti and the locomotive changes direction of travel depending on the side rail with which it is powered.

 Van Dyck - Prince Thomas
                                                                                 Van Dyck – Prince Thomas

The vehicles with two axles, inspired by the material of the SNCB of  the time, are in metal veneer, enamelled in two tones of green and annealed

fig 01a
ELEC already disappeared before 1950, you have to wait for the ‘beginning of the’ 60s to find again Flemish trains.

Fig 02a HemaKat
In 1961 a Dutch sale’s chain offers with its own brand Hema

Fig 02bHema Trein

a catalog of trains Flemish

fig 02f

 In fact they are produced by Lima in Vicenza


though, until 1969, the Italian brand and the words “Made in Italy” never appear on boxes and packaging, and often, even under the frame of the vehicles are covered by pasted  labels HEMA .

fig 02c
Since 1969 it says “Made in Italy”, but not “Lima”

fig 02d
This situation lasted until 1980,

fig 02e

when he released his latest catalog HEMA rail

Fig 02g K1980Hema

Of course also other brands, such as Fleischmann or Maerklin, produced in those years rail vehicles for this market, but we do not consider them as imported with their brand of origin and not produced in Belgium or Holland.

Rembrandt - Ronda di notte

Starting from 1962 the company Distlertoy, newly established Belgian company, saves, from the closing of the historic German Distler, equipment and materials to produce trains in lithographed sheet.

fig 03 Dist B
Trains are cheap, to be sold in chain stores and supermarkets newborn .

fig 04Dist1
Cheap and equipment is already amortized, using binary ranching Trix or Fleischmann and operate from battery (4.5 volts),

fig 05a

but have little success and their ephemeral production ceased around 1965.

fig 06
However, these are fascinating Flemish, although largely inspired Teutonic, with a range that extends from the steam engine, as the BR 80 and BR 01 to modern TEE of  the time.

fig 05

Before disappearing, at the end of  60s, Distlertoy offered trains in plastic.


Noblesse Van Dyik

It is part of the production of this period this package of so-called Tramways actually more like “Schienenbus” Germans equipped with pantographs to real tram.

fig 07

 This ephemeral package is now a genuine rarety.

fig 08
Always of the same period is the train mining or “Sandbahn”

fig 09

with its tilting wagons derived Trix.

We must then wait more than 10 years to find new Flemish trains , but only handcrafted brass high level.

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(@ April 11, 2015)