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Charbens Miniatures Series or "Old Crocks" 1-4

The number 1 was the 1904 Darracq which was based on Genevieve the star of the film Genevieve.

The body can be blue, red or orange and the mudguards can be chrome plated or painted black.

The car was fitted with two seperately cast headlights and the wheels were yellow die cast on the early issues and yellow plastic on the later ones and a spare wheel was mounted on the back.

The steering wheel was cast in as part of the body and gold trim was applied to the headlights, grille and steering wheel.

Value approximately 10-15


Number 2 was the 1905 Spyker which was also a star of the film Genevieve.

This one was painted yellow or orangy yellow with chrome plated or black painted mudguards.

It had seperately cast headlights and steering wheel and red die cast or red plastic wheels.

It had the usual gold trim to the steering wheel, headlights and grille

There were probably two dies for this model as there are two different heights to the scuttle (dashboard) which means there are two different length windscreen pillars and the grille can be either round or a slightly larger oval shape.

Value approximately 10-15

Left: the low and high scuttle with long or short windscreen pillars and the small and large grille castings.

Charbens number 3 Bus (type 1)

The 1914 "Old Bill" London bus was cast in two seperate halves which were press fitted together and then painted in either orange or more commonly red.

The wheels were also die cast and were painted black and the Grille and the "General" lettering to the sides were trimmed in gold.

There were two dies for this model which can most easily be seen in the lettering for "Made in England" on the side of the bus, One casting has "Made in" above "England" written horizontally along the side and the other has diagonal wording,

If you examine the castings closely you can see there are many more minor variations between the two, ie-the handrail around the upper decks and the additional "joining peg" between the upper deck seats.

Value approximately 12-18


Charbens number 3 Bus (type 2)

The much nicer second version of the 1914 "Old Bill" London bus body was cast in one piece but the upper deck seats were cast seperately, The body can be found painted in either red, orange or maroon and the upper deck seats were painted in light brown.

The wheels were spoked black painted metal and only the Grille had gold trim applied.

The body can also be found in a chrome plated finish with a threaded tube cast on the underneath to allow it to be attached to giftware such as ashtrays etc.

Value approximately 15-20

There were two versions of the 1907 Ford, The earliest one was cast in two halves and it had seperately cast headlights fitted, It was painted dark blue with gold trim to the headlights, grille, rear number plate and to the petrol tank which was on top of the boot (trunk). It had tinplate mudguards which can be chrome plated or painted black and the wheels were yellow painted spoked metal.

The second version was a one piece casting which now included the mudguards although the headlights were still cast seperately. This one was also painted dark blue with gold trim to the headlights, grille, fuel tank and rear number plate, It can be found with yellow metal or yellow plastic wheels. This was a very cute model which I always thought should be in a "Mr Magoo" cartoon.

Value approximately 10-15

Note that the silver trim on the pictured model may not be original

1-4 . 5-8 . 9-12 . 13-16 . 17-20 . 21-24 . 25-28 . 29-35