PLEASE NOTE: I will no longer be altering the variation codes. All new discoveries will be inserted in to their correct place in the timeline and given a suffix.
So a new variation that would be nearest to variation 4 would become the new 4a, etc.

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Moko Lesney Matchbox 33a Ford zodiac



The Lesney model of the 33a Ford Zodiac joined the Matchbox 1-75 series in 1957. It was initially painted dark green with hand applied silver trim to the grille, headlights and front & rear bumpers, Red trim was applied to the tail lights. The wheels were 8.5 x 18 grey metal on flat head axles with crimped ends and it had a flat black baseplate
The model was recoloured several times, There was one issue in flat dark green then there was dark blue, dark bluish green (or teal), blue (from 34a), sea green and finally silver with orange side panels, The silver is actually a metallic mauve but has been listed as silver in the listing.
It was later fitted with dome head axles, then grey plastic wheels with crimped and later rounded axle ends and finally with silver plastic wheels. Only the later issues of the silver & orange version was fitted with windows which were green tinted plastic.
The silver trim was changed to mask sprayed while the blue issue was in production and during the run of silver & orange the trim from the rear bumper was omitted.
The baseplate was changed to gloss black during the sea green issue and continued through the silver & orange versions.

There were many casting variations, The baseplate originally had the number 33 in small text but this was later enlarged. The roof had a smooth interior for the first issue only then an ejector ring was added followed by two pips, then the ejector ring was replaced by two ejector rings and finally both ejector rings and pips were removed and replaced by a window unit fixing rivet.
The rear rivet post had two thin triangular webs which were later enlarged to a much thicker web which encircled the top of the post. There was a short ejector ring under the bonnet which was just behind the grille, this was lengthened twice and the interior of the bonnet which was smooth on the first issue had a small almost flush ejector ring added which was followed shortly by two pips and finally by a larger ejector ring making four versions of the bonnet interior and five of the roof.
The flat dark green, dark blue green, dark blue and blue versions are all rare and don't come up for sale very often, The dark green is common and the silver & orange is a ittle harder to find. The model was packaged in 'B', 'C' and 'D' type boxes, The 'C' box is hard to find and the 'D' box is quite rare and both will fetch a premium.
The Zodiac was replaced by the 33b Zephyr in 1963.
It should be noted that it is almost impossible to photograph the common dark green zodiac as the photos will show it much bluer than it really is, This also applies to this model when viewing it under sodium lights as it also looks bluer. and as for auction pictures - I have a drawer full of dark green zodiacs that were bought in error.

above: blue, dark green, silver & orange, the dark green model is
unusual because it has one flat head axle and one dome head axle.

above: left, dark blue-green (or teal blue). right, dark green

above: left, blue with grey plastic wheels. right, blue
with grey metal wheels. both versions are very rare.

above: sea green with grey plastic wheels

above: L to R, dark blue, dark blue green, dark green, sea green and blue.
photograph courtesy George T

above: the small and larger number '33' with a ridge below the tow hook.


There are two versions of the two tone model without windows. 9x20 gpw and 8x18 gpw.

code number silver & red trim
code 1 hand applied silver trim to grille, headlights & both bumpers, red trim to tail lights
code 2 mask sprayed silver trim to grille, headlights & both bumpers, red trim to tail lights
code 3 mask sprayed silver trim to grille, headlights & front bumper, red trim to tail lights

code number general wheel type axle type baseplate rivet post (R) bonnet roof ejector post (F) trim windows
code 1 dark green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 1 type 1 short type 1 none
code 2 dark green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 2 type 2 short type 1 none
code 3 flat dark green 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 4 dark green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 5 dark green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 6 dark blue green 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 7 dark blue body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 8 blue body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 9 blue body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 2 none
code 10 blue body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 2 none
code 11 sea green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 1 none
code 12 sea green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 3 short type 2 none
code 13 sea green body 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 14 sea green body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 3 type 4 short type 2 none
code 15 sea green body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped small 33 gloss black thin webs type 3 type 4 short type 2 none
code 16 sea green body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped small 33 flat black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 17 sea green body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped small 33 gloss black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 18 sea green body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 19 silver & orange body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 20 silver & orange body 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thin webs type 4 type 4 short type 2 none
code 21 silver & orange body 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thin webs type 4 type 5 medium type 2 green
code 22 silver & orange body 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 medium type 2 green
code 23 silver & orange body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 long type 2 green
code 24 silver & orange body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded small 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 long type 3 green
code 25 silver & orange body 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded large 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 medium type 3 green
code 26 silver & orange body 9 x 20 silver plastic dome head rounded large 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 medium type 3 green
code 27 silver & orange body 9 x 20 silver plastic dome head rounded large 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 long type 3 green
code 28 silver & orange body 9 x 24 silver plastic dome head rounded large 33 gloss black thick webs type 4 type 5 long type 3 green

box types notes
B2 small model number
B2 large model number
B3 none
B4 Ford "Zodiac"
B4 Ford Zodiac
B5 Ford "Zodiac"
B5 Ford Zodiac
C Ford Zodiac
D1 one black side one blue

values

dark green body, grey metal wheels 45

flat dark green body, grey metal wheels 200

dark blue green (teal blue) body, grey metal wheels 300+

dark blue body, grey metal wheels 500+ (estimated)

blue body, grey metal or grey plastic wheels 500+ (estimated)

sea green body, grey metal or grey plastic wheels 90

silver & orange body, grey wheels, no windows 150

silver & orange body, grey wheels, green windows 120

silver & orange body, silver wheels, green windows 80

for models in a 'C' box add 20

for models in a 'D' box add 100

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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