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 61a Ferret scout car



In 1959 the Lesney model of the Ferret scout car became the first of several Army vehicles to to be introduced into the Matchbox 1-75 series that year, Lesney chose to model the version of the Ferret that was without the small turret which was found on the Ferrets normally used by the British army. Like the other military vehicles it was painted a dark olive green with a flat black baseplate affixed by two round rivets.
The first issues were fitted with 12.5 x 30 black plastic wheels on dome head axles with crimped ends, these were later changed to rounded ends and later still the wheels were changed to 12.5 x 40 black plastic,
The baseplate was originally flat black but was soon changed to gloss black, The model was enhanced by a tan painted Commander sitting in the open cockpit. Silver trim was never applied to this model partly because it was a military vehicle and also because it was not fitted with headlights.

There were very many casting variations and I have listed what I can but I am sure there are many more.
The first was the casting closed of the toolbox by the right rear wheel, next was the addition of a short ejector post inside the car towards the rear, soon after ejector post was lengthened as was the existing post that was also inside the car but towards the front.
Next came a modification to the baseplate where the early baseplates had 3 lines of text they now had 4 lines when "Matchbox series" was added to the inscription. also a raised ejector ring can be found beside the Commander on the 4 line base.

Next came the casting closed of the toolbox by the front right wheel and soon after the letter 'A' was cast on the inside of the baseplate beside the Commander. Next the toolbox by the left side rear wheel was cast closed which was shortly followed by the toolbox by the right side front wheel being cast closed.
The Ferret was a fairly popular toy so is not hard to find today and there were many variations but none of them are particularly rare, it was sold in 'B', 'C' and 'D' type boxes and after a seven year run was replaced by the 61b Alvis Stalwart in 1966.

Updated: 01-04-10,
Various forum members have confirmed the Scout car exists with both sides of the baseplate painted black. This seems to be found on the 30 tread and the later 40 tread wheel models, It has not been included in the listing table as yet until more details come to light.

above left & right: open toolboxes

above left & right: one toolbox open & one closed

above left & right: closed toolboxes

above left: 3 line base. right: 4 line base

above: ejector ring & A

above: With black painted baseplate inner, Photo courtesy Sonnys_toys1930

above: An unusual and unrecorded baseplate with the model
number on a raised panel, It is on a code 1 model so is a very
early piece, These usually have the number directly on the base
so it was probably replaced or modified before the model went
into production, There has been much speculation as to what
the original number beneath the raised panel was originally.
photo courtesy Antonin (Shenk)

code
number
general wheel type axle type baseplate toolboxes front ejector post rear ejector post
code 1 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head crimped 3 lines, flat black 4 open short none
code 2 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head crimped 3 lines, gloss black 4 open short none
code 3 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head crimped 3 lines, flat black 3 open, 1 closed short none
code 4 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head crimped 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed short none
code 5 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 4 open short none
code 6 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed short none
code 7 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed short short
code 8 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed short longer
code 9 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed longer longer
code 10 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 30 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed longer longer
code 11 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 3 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed longer longer
code 12 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black 3 open, 1 closed longer longer
code 13 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black 2 open, 2 closed longer longer
code 14 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black
with 'A'
2 open, 2 closed longer longer
code 15 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black
with 'A'
1 open, 3 closed longer longer
code 16 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black
with 'A'
4 closed longer longer
code 17 olive green, tan commander 12.5 x 40 black plastic dome head rounded 4 lines, gloss black
no letter
4 closed longer longer

box types notes
B3 none
B4 none
B5 facing right, medium number shown
B5 facing right, large number shown
B5 facing left
C facing right
C facing left
D1 one black side one blue
D2 one black side one blue
D2 two blue sides
D2 light blue sides,

values

all models 35

values are for mint models in mint boxes

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