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 38a Karrier bantam refuse truck



Lesney introduced the "Chelsea" bodied Karrier bantam refuse truck into the Matchbox 1-75 series in 1957.
The first version was painted a muddy brown and it seems to turn up quite frequently in Holland. It had grey metal wheels on dome head axles with crimped ends. It had hand applied silver trim to the grille, headlights and front bumper and it was enhanced with orange-yellow or yellow "cleansing department" decals to the sides.
The muddy brown paint was quickly dropped in favour of grey and the reason was probably because the decals did not adhere to the brown paint very well.
Next two ridges were added to the sides to help the employees locate the decals in the correct position. Then there was an odd run that was issued with the older type flat head axles, Although this is unusual other models issued at this point in time are known to have this anomaly.
Soon afterwards the gap between the back of the cab and the refuse container was filled in.
Next the wheels were changed from grey metal to the smaller 8 x 18 grey plastic and soon afterwards the axle crimping was changed to axles with rounded ends.

Next the model was given a change of livery when the grey paint was changed for a much brighter silver and as the silver versions no longer needed silver trim so it was omitted from these last few issues.
The first very short run of silver bodied bantams was issued with 9 x 20 silver plastic wheels and this version is by far the rarest and is very rarely seen.
The next issue had grey plastic wheels and the final run had another casting modification when two ridges were added to the sides of the body which were presumbly there to stop the back door casting from coming adrift, Strangely it is usually the silver painted bantams that turn up without the doors so maybe it was the shiny silver paint had less grip on the door casting.
The grey issues are common, the silver ones are less common, the brown issue is quite rare but the silver body with silver wheels is the rarest.
One odd variation was seen to have the last body type in silver but with grey metal wheels on crimped axles, This variation does not fit in with the timeline so it must be assumed to be a pre production or something so has not been added to the variation table.
The bantam was packaged in 'B' and 'C' type boxes, it was replaced by the 38b Vauxhall victor in mid 1963.

above: three colour variations plus an error piece with the decals in the wrong position.

above: another error piece without decals.

code number general silver trim wheel type axle type body type
code 1 grey brown body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped body 1
code 2 grey brown body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 1
code 3 bright grey brown body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 1
code 4 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 1
code 5 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal flat head crimped body 2
code 6 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 2
code 7 bright grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 2
code 8 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8.5 x 18 grey metal dome head crimped body 3
code 9 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped body 3
code 10 grey body, decals mask sprayed, grille, headlights & bumper 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped body 3
code 11 grey body, decals hand applied, grille, headlights & bumper 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded body 3
code 12 grey body, decals mask sprayed, grille, headlights & bumper 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded body 3
code 13 silver body, decals none 9 x 20 silver plastic dome head rounded body 3
code 14 silver body, decals none 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded body 3
code 15 silver body, decals none 8 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded body 4

box types notes
B2 none
B3 none
B4 lower case letters
B4 upper case letters
B5 none
C none

values

brown body, grey metal wheels 150+

grey body, grey metal wheels 35

grey body, grey plastic wheels 35

silver body, grey plastic wheels 60

silver body, silver plastic wheels 500+

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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above: a later mid sixties Karrier with a one piece windscreen