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Matchbox

MDC-R    Matchbox collectibles / Matchbox Superfast Mini

This famous, originally English, manufacturer of die-cast models has always released models that collectors often refer to as 'box-scale', i.e. the models had to fit into the boxes they were sold in and the actual scale of the model was of secondary importance. There were, however, several models that are actually very close to 1/87.

Thanks to Austrian Matchbox collector Christian Falkensteiner who sent us a long e-mail with additional information and attached a complete list of near 87th scale models we were able to update this page, here is Christian's story:

MATCHBOX MINIATURES IN APPROXIMATE H0 SCALE

It has to be noted that Matchbox scales are approximate at best. Very often it was felt by the producers that a model did not look quite 'right' when rendered in an accurate scale, so the width of the model ended up in a different (usually larger) scale than its length. The scales given in my list have been derived from scale specifications found in Matchbox pocket catalogs up to 1976 and on the baseplates of the models themselves from 1980 onward. Not all of those scales are necessarily accurate unfortunately.

My list is subdivided in two parts, one covering the Lesney era, the other covering the Matchbox International / Mattel era up to the present day. The feature determining to which era a particular model belongs is the presence or absence of the Lesney name on its baseplate. After Lesney's bankruptcy in 1982, the first models without the Lesney name appeared in 1983, while the last models with the Lesney name were phased out during 1986.

The Lesney era list is organized according to the 'UK Matchbox' numbering system, based on the actual issue numbers of the models on the European market. Up to 1980 the issue numbers of the models were the same worldwide; after that the US range was split off from the rest of the world, and later on the same models were often issued under different numbers in different markets. From 1998 onward each model was allocated a different number each year, and this practice still continues.

Therefore the Matchbox Int'l / Mattel era list is organized differently, following the so-called MAN numbers (i.e. factory identification numbers) which were introduced in 1982 to uniquely identify each casting. Some models which had originated in the Lesney era continued to be produced later on, so they appear in both lists. This applies to all MAN numbers up to 114 plus most of those above 700 (allocated to models phased out earlier which were reissued during the 1980s).

Lesney era:

Ref#

Model
(Actual bottomplate lettering in CAPITALS)

First released

Scale

01B

Aveling Barford Road Roller

1956

1:90

01C

Aveling Barford Road Roller

1959

1:86

01D

AVELING BARFORD ROAD ROLLER

1962

1:86

01E

MERCEDES TRUCK

1967

1:87

02A

Muir Hill Site Dumper

1953

1:93

02C

MUIR HILL DUMPER

1962

1:86

02D

MERCEDES TRAILER

1967

1:87

03B

BEDFORD 7 TON TIPPER

1961

1:85

04D

Dodge STAKE TRUCK

1966

1:86

07C

Ford REFUSE TRUCK

1967

1:85

09C

MERRYWEATHER MARQUIS SERIES III FIRE ENGINE

1959

1:93

10D

Leyland PIPE TRUCK

1966

1:93

11C

TAYLOR JUMBO CRANE

1964

1:85

11D

MERCEDES SCAFFOLDING TRUCK

1969

1:91

12A

Land Rover

1955

1:93

13D

DODGE WRECK TRUCK

1965

1:85

13F

(GMC) SNORKEL FIRE ENGINE

1978

1:83

13G

SNORKEL Fire Engine

1981

1:86

14B

DAIMLER AMBULANCE

1958

1:86

14C

Bedford LOMAS AMBULANCE

1962

1:86

16D

CASE TRACTOR Bulldozer

1969

1:82

17E

(AEC) HORSE BOX

1969

1:92

19G

PETERBILT Cement Truck

1982

1:80

21D

FODEN CONCRETE TRUCK

1968

1:89

22E

BLAZE BUSTER Fire Engine

1975

1:90

23A

Berkeley Cavalier Caravan

1956

1:80

23B

BERKELEY CAVALIER Caravan

1957

1:80

23C

BLUEBIRD DAUPHINE Caravan

1961

1:80

23F

ATLAS Dump Truck

1975

1:88

23G

PETERBILT Quarry Truck

1982

1:80

24A

Weatherill Hydraulic Excavator

1956

1:88

25C

Bedford PETROL TANKER

1964

1:85

26C

G.M.C. TIPPER TRUCK

1968

1:86

26F

VOLVO Cable Truck

1982

1:90

27C

CADILLAC SIXTY SPECIAL

1960

1:80

29E

Muir Hill TRACTOR SHOVEL

1976

1:82

32C

LEYLAND PETROL TANKER

1968

1:92

35C

MERRYWEATHER FIRE ENGINE

1969

1:86

35E

VOLVO Zoo Truck

1982

1:90

36F

REFUSE TRUCK

1980

1:86

37A

KARRIER BANTAM 2 TON Coca-Cola Truck

1957

1:89

37B

KARRIER BANTAM 2 TON Coca-Cola Truck

1959

1:89

37C

Dodge CATTLE TRUCK

1966

1:86

37E

SKIP TRUCK

1976

1:88

38A

KARRIER REFUSE COLLECTOR

1957

1:87

39B

PONTIAC CONVERTIBLE

1962

1:86

40A

BEDFORD 7 TON TIPPER

1957

1:93

40E

Bedford HORSE-BOX

1977

1:92

41E

Chevrolet AMBULANCE

1978

1:84

42B

STUDEBAKER LARK WAGONAIRE

1965

1:80

42C

IRON FAIRY CRANE

1969

1:80

44A

ROLLS-ROYCE SILVER CLOUD

1968

1:80

44C

G.M.C. REFRIGERATOR TRUCK

1967

1:94

45E

KENWORTH Cabover Aerodyne

1982

1:90

47B

COMMER ICE CREAM CANTEEN

1963

1:85

47C

DAF TIPPER CONTAINER TRUCK

1968

1:94

48C

Dodge DUMPER TRUCK

1966

1:85

50D

ARTICULATED TRUCK

1973

1:90

50T

ARTICULATED TRUCK Trailer

1980

1:90

51C

(AEC) 8 WHEEL TIPPER

1969

1:92

54A

Alvis SARACEN PERSONNEL CARRIER

1958

1:86

54B

S & S CADILLAC AMBULANCE

1965

1:87

55B

FORD FAIRLANE POLICE CAR

1963

1:80

56F

PETERBILT Tanker

1982

1:80

57B

CHEVROLET IMPALA

1961

1:80

58C

DAF GIRDER TRUCK

1968

1:94

59B

FORD FAIRLANE FIRE CHIEF'S CAR

1963

1:80

60B

Leyland SITE HUT TRUCK

1966

1:82

61A

Leyland FERRET SCOUT CAR

1959

1:87

61E

PETERBILT Wreck Truck

1982

1:80

62B

Commer TV SERVICE VAN

1963

1:86

63B

Alvis FOAMITE CRASH TENDER

1963

1:93

63C

DODGE CRANE TRUCK

1968

1:86

63D

FREEWAY GAS TANKER

1973

1:90

63T

FREEWAY GAS TANKER Trailer

1978

1:90

64E

CATERPILLAR D 9 TRACTOR

1979

1:81

66F

KENWORTH Super Boss

1982

1:85

67A

Alvis SALADIN ARMOURED CAR 6 X 6

1959

1:86

68A

AUSTIN MK 2 RADIO TRUCK

1959

1:87

68B

MERCEDES (O 321 H) COACH

1965

1:90

69A

COMMER 30 CWT VAN

1959

1:91

69E

ARMORED TRUCK

1978

1:89

70B

Ford GRIT-SPREADING TRUCK

1966

1:85

71A

AUSTIN 200 GALLON WATER TRUCK

1959

1:87

71E

Dodge CATTLE TRUCK

1976

1:86

71T

Cattle TRAILER

1980

1:86

74A

MOBILE CANTEEN

1959

1:80

75A

FORD THUNDERBIRD

1959

1:80

TP22

Peterbilt LONG HAUL Cab

1980

1:80

Matchbox Int'l / Mattel era:

Ref#

Model
(Actual bottomplate lettering in CAPITALS)

First released

Scale

019

PETERBILT Cement Truck

1983

1:80

023

ATLAS Dump Truck

1991

1:88

029

Muir Hill TRACTOR SHOVEL

1983

1:82

035

VOLVO Zoo Truck

1985

1:90

036

REFUSE TRUCK

1983

1:86

040

Bedford HORSE-BOX

1985

1:92

041

Chevrolet AMBULANCE

1983

1:84

045

KENWORTH Cabover Aerodyne

1983

1:90

061

PETERBILT Wreck Truck

1983

1:80

064

CATERPILLAR D 9 TRACTOR / BULLDOZER

1983

1:81

066

KENWORTH Super Boss

1983

1:85

069

ARMORED TRUCK

1987

1:89

071

DODGE CATTLE TRUCK

1985

1:86

084

KENWORTH Bandag Bandit

1983

1:85

096

PETERBILT Quarry Truck

1983

1:80

100

PETERBILT Tanker

1983

1:80

106

PETERBILT Conventional Sleeper Cab

1983

1:80

111

SNORKEL Fire Engine

1983

1:86

134

Oshkosh FIRE ENGINE

1984

1:92

139

VOLVO Tilt Truck

1984

1:90

140

Faun MOBILE CRANE

1984

1:90

147

SCANIA T 142 Cab

1985

1:90

148

VOLVO Container Truck

1985

1:90

153

MISSION HELICOPTER

1985

1:80

183

DAF 3300 SPACE CAB

1987

1:86

211

Ford UTILITY TRUCK

1989

1:83

222

Chevrolet HIGHWAY MAINTENANCE TRUCK

1990

1:83

229

MACK AUXILIARY POWER TRUCK

1991

1:84

237

Muir Hill TRACTOR SHOVEL

1993

1:82

299

Ford AMBULANCE

1997

1:80

307

PETERBILT Conventional Sleeper Cab

1997

1:80

309

KENWORTH Cabover Aerodyne

1997

1:90

312

Muir Hill TRACTOR SHOVEL

1997

1:82

313

Oshkosh FIRE ENGINE

1997

1:92

314

Faun MOBILE CRANE

1997

1:90

315

VOLVO Truck with Stakes

1997

1:90

330

MISSION HELICOPTER with Armaments

1997

1:80

338

1938 DODGE AIRFLOW Van

1998

1:80

340

DAF 3300 SPACE CAB

1998

1:86

341

SCANIA T 142 Cab

1998

1:90

351

Caterpillar Challenger TRACTOR

1998

1:85

353

Caterpillar BACKHOE/LOADER

1998

1:80

371

FORD BOX TRUCK

1999

1:80

372

CHEVY TRANSPORT BUS

1999

1:80

384

MISSILE LAUNCHER

1999

1:92

388

PETERBILT DUMP W/BLADE

1999

1:80

389

VOLVO Truck with Tank

1998

1:90

397

M 4 SHERMAN TANK

1999

1:92

408

SEAPLANE

1999

1:90

416

RESCUE CHOPPER

1999

1:80

427

MERCEDES-BENZ ML 430

1999

1:82

443B

Isuzu FLATBED TRUCK

2000

1:90

444

FORD PANEL VAN

2000

1:80

445

Isuzu DELIVERY TRUCK

2000

1:90

446

INTERNATIONAL ARMORED CAR

2000

1:81

468

BATTERING RAM

2000

1:92

470

GMC BUCKET TRUCK

2000

1:83

474

FORD PANEL VAN with Triang Roof Light

2001

1:80

479

FORD PANEL VAN without Roof Equipment

2002

1:80

702

MERCEDES TRAILER

1985

1:87

724

Peterbilt Tractor

1984

1:80

792

Cattle TRAILER

1986

1:86

This is where Christian's contribution to this page ends, have a look at his homepage to see a lot of the models mentioned above pictured.


Several of the 'Major Pack' models were also close to 1/87.

Ref# Model Released in Scale
9 Hendrickson Tractor with double 40ft. trailer 

?

1:90 ?


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