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 59a Ford 300E van 'Singer'



1958 saw the introduction to the Matchbox 1-75 series of the Lesney model of the Ford 300E which was the van version of the 30a Ford Prefect, Initially it was painted a pale green but later issues were a darker 'kelly' green, Silver trim was applied to the headlights, grille and the front and rear bumpers but later the trim was omitted from the rear bumper.
The baseplate was painted flat or gloss black on the first issues and gloss black on the later and it was attached to the body by a tongue and slot at the rear and by a single round rivet at the front.
The wheels were either grey or silver plastic and the axles were originally dome head with crimped ends which were later superceded by dome head with rounded ends.
It was enhanced by the addition of decals, the side panels had 'Singer' in orange or red which was outlined with yellow and the doors had 'singer sewing machines' in white on an orange or red S which was also outlined with yellow,

Casting variations can be found on the front doors where the decal is located, on early models the decals were aligned to the door by eye, soon decal guides were cast in to the door making the location of the decal more accurate and a little easier, it also made the decal less likely to chip or wear off during play.
Two more casting variations can be found on the underneath of the bonnet(hood). Firstly a large round ejector ring was cast centrally and later an additional but smaller ejector ring was cast next to it on the inside of the right side wheel well.
I recently came across a mint grey plastic wheeled model without door decal guides or door decals and purchased it with the intention of fitting a set of repro decals and two days later I saw another one on ebay without door decals so now I wonder if this could be an unlisted version as I have since seen two more, incidentially the illustration on the box also shows the van without decals to the doors.
The Ford was sold in the 'B' type box and was replaced by the 59b Ford Fairlane fire chief car in 1963, It is hard to find with silver wheels or with the dark green paint, the first version without door decal guides is not too common either.

pale green & kelly green, also orange & red decals

early issues had a smooth bonnet inner, then the large ejector
ring was cast, later the smaller ejector ring was cast

 photo johnnijhuis59a_zpsb7d7c9b1.jpg

A late issue showing the two ejector rings, Note that all 59a's
have the grille braces that are shown here circled in yellow
photo courtesy John Nijhuis

code number general wheel type axle type door decal guides baseplate colour silver trim bonnet inner
code 1 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped no guides flat black to front & rear smooth
code 2 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped no guides gloss black to front & rear smooth
code 3 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides flat black to front & rear smooth
code 4 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides gloss black to front & rear smooth
code 5 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides flat black to front & rear large ejector ring
code 6 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides gloss black to front & rear large ejector ring
code 7 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides flat black to front & rear large & small ejector rings
code 8 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head crimped with guides gloss black to front & rear large & small ejector rings
code 9 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded with guides gloss black to front only large & small ejector rings
code 10 pale green body, decals 9 x 20 silver plastic dome head rounded with guides gloss black to front only large & small ejector rings
code 11 kelly green body, decals 9 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded with guides gloss black to front only large & small ejector rings
code 12 kelly green body, decals 9.5 x 20 grey plastic dome head rounded with guides gloss black to front only large & small ejector rings
code 13 kelly green body, decals 9 x 20 silver plastic dome head rounded with guides gloss black to front only large & small ejector rings

box types notes
B3 none
B4 none
B5 small picture, no door decals
B5 large picture, no door decals
B5 with door decals

values

light green, grey plastic wheels, no door decal guides 60

light green, grey plastic wheels 40

light green, silver plastic wheels 160

dark green, grey plastic wheels 160

dark green, silver plastic wheels 150

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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