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 AEC Coach 'BEA'



The Lesney model of the BEA coach joined the Matchbox 1-75 series in 1958, It was based on an AEC coach chassis with a one and a half deck body that had an enlarged luggage area below the upper deck, The real coach was used exclusively by BEA (British European Airways) on the route between the west London air terminal and Heathrow airport.
The Lesney model was painted dark blue with silver trim to the BEA badge at the front and some also had trim to the headlights and to the spotlight at the front but this can vary and there does not seem to be a regular sequence to the trimming of this model.
The first issue had a flat black baseplate and grey plastic wheels on dome head axles with crimped ends and the model was enhanced by plain white "British European Airways" decals applied to the sides which were later replaced by white, black and red "British European Airways" decals which had "BEA" in a red box,
The decals were usually positioned so the red BEA box was towards the front of the coach but it can be found fitted towards the back and sometimes coaches can have two decals of the same type fitted so that one decal has the BEA box towards the front and the decal on the other side can have the BEA box towards the rear.
Gloss black was also used on the baseplate and later axles with rounded ends were fitted, The last few runs were fitted with silver or black plastic wheels and both versions are hard to find with the silver wheeled version being the rarest.
There was only one minor casting variation to the baseplate where the ridge that runs the full width across the rear is reduced to two very short ridges either side of the rear rivet. The BEA coach was packaged in 'B', 'C' and 'D' type boxes, The 'B' and 'C' boxes are common but the 'D' type box is the gem to look for because it is extremely rare and even an empty 'D' has been known to sell for over 700.
The coach was replaced by the Drott excavator late in 1962.

above: hard to find silver wheeled coach in a rare 'D' box..

above: early and later decals.

decal code decal type
decal 1 plain white decal
decal 2 white red & black with red 'BEA' box towards the front of the coach
decal 3 white red & black with red 'BEA' box towards the rear of the coach

code number general wheel type axle type decal type baseplate colour & type
code 1 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 1 flat black, full ridge
code 2 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 1 gloss black, full ridge
code 3 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 1 flat black, short ridges
code 4 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 1 gloss black, short ridges
code 5 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 2 flat black, full ridge
code 6 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 2 gloss black, full ridge
code 7 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 2 flat black, short ridges
code 8 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 2 gloss black, short ridges
code 9 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 3 flat black, full ridge
code 10 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 3 gloss black, full ridge
code 11 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 3 flat black, short ridges
code 12 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head crimped decal 3 gloss black, short ridges
code 13 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded decal 2 gloss black, full ridge
code 14 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded decal 2 gloss black, short ridges
code 15 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded decal 3 gloss black, full ridge
code 16 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 grey plastic dome head rounded decal 3 gloss black, short ridges
code 17 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 silver plastic dome head rounded decal 2 gloss black, short ridges
code 18 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 silver plastic dome head rounded decal 3 gloss black, short ridges
code 19 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 black plastic dome head rounded decal 2 gloss black, short ridges
code 20 blue body, silver trim 7.5 x 18 black plastic dome head rounded decal 3 gloss black, short ridges

box types notes
B3 front view
B3 side view
B5 no decal, no lines beneath wheels
B5 no decal, lines beneath wheels
B5 white decal shown
C none
D1 one black side one blue

values

blue body, white decals grey plastic wheels 40

blue body, white red & black decals grey plastic wheels 70

blue body, white red & black decals black plastic wheels 120

blue body, white red & black decals silver plastic wheels 200

empty 'D' type box 400+

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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