Re: E&B Valley


Bob Chaparro
 

Bev-Bel Corp., formerly of Cresskill, New Jersey, was founded in 1956 by Irvin and Beverly Belkin. Bev-Bel produced limited runs of road names and schemes not generally produced by the major model railroad manufacturers, along with special-appeal rolling stock, including the Holdiay [sp?], Americana and Mexicana Models series.

I read that Irv Belkin and Irv Athearn were great friends, even went on cruises together with their wives. Athearn was the source of Bev-Bel’s undecorated HO scale freight cars

Craig Walker, formerly of Athearn’s product development unit and now working for Rapido, told me:

“Irv Athearn's nephew (Irv never had any children of his own) had in interest in trains, and was married to a woman from México. As a result of many trips there, he gathered material to produce his Mexicana Models line in a shop in Garden Grove, CA. The nephew also did some overflow pad printing for Athearn, and also did most, if not all, of Bev-Bel's printing and some painting.

As I recall, Bev-Bel eventually bought Mexicana Models from the nephew, or got an exclusive on them. But at the beginning, we at the Little Depot were able to get them from a distributor in Oceanside, which was our main Athearn supplier.

For Bev-Bel, I had to order them from Bev-Bel in New Jersey, and for years the Little Depot was the only shop in Southern California that carried the Bev-Bel line, and we did very well with them because they produced models that Irv wasn't interesting it doing - particularly on the Railbox car, which Irv only offered in RBOX and skipped all the colorful Per Diem schemes for shortlines, leaving those to be produced by his friend, Irv Belkin, at Bev-Bel.”

Bob Chaparro

Hemet, CA

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