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Anomalous Trim Colour

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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby Idris » Mon Nov 21, 2016 2:55 pm

To show just how the camera can lie, here’s an Ebay photograph of an orange 15a with, apparently, gold trim or, at the very least, mixed gold/silver trim. However, I contacted the seller about this model and he assured me that the trim is 100% silver with no hint of gold whatsoever.
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby GHOSTHUNTER » Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:34 pm

Both pictures here are from ebay with no enhancement.

The first model was brought on the strength of the Fire Extinguisher appearing to be finished in 'Copper'. All production issues of this model have a 'Gold-Brass' component matching the cover on the running board box and the windscreen frame, never 'Copper', so this would have been an unusual version to have!

A not so normal image..JPG
A not so normal image..JPG (58.95 KiB) Viewed 256 times


This picture shows what it should look like.

A normal image..JPG
A normal image..JPG (49.02 KiB) Viewed 256 times


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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby Idris » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:30 pm

A mid-production 38a with gold trim has recently been found.
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby matchboxuk » Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:03 pm

Am I correct in thinking that the models being discussed received their gold or silver trim from an outworker as this was before the arrival of trimming machines? If so, it was inevitable that mistakes were made. If a lady was painting grilles in the evening after a day with the children, it is plausible that she made a mistake. I think the models were delivered and collected in large tins and so a mistake with the colour of the trim could easily be hidden. It also occurs to me that the lady would have silver and gold paint to hand and perhaps just the one paint brush and so some vehicles might have been a mixture of gold and silver paint.

However, given the rarity of such errors, the quality control must have been of a very high standard.
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby Idris » Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:22 pm

matchboxuk wrote:Am I correct in thinking that the models being discussed received their gold or silver trim from an outworker as this was before the arrival of trimming machines? If so, it was inevitable that mistakes were made. If a lady was painting grilles in the evening after a day with the children, it is plausible that she made a mistake. I think the models were delivered and collected in large tins and so a mistake with the colour of the trim could easily be hidden. It also occurs to me that the lady would have silver and gold paint to hand and perhaps just the one paint brush and so some vehicles might have been a mixture of gold and silver paint.

However, given the rarity of such errors, the quality control must have been of a very high standard.


I believe you are correct in saying that these gold-trimmed models are all outworker-trimmed examples. (Not sure about the 9c, but that one's questionable anyway.)
In the past, we have discussed the gold/silver mixed trim which is sometime observed, and came to the conclusion that this was most likely the result of a reusable pot being refilled with the wrong paint. (It is clear that the gold and silver paints did not mix very well.) The paintbrush idea obviously also works, but I would have thought that the amount of e.g. silver paint retained on a paintbrush after it had been wiped 'clean' on a newspaper would be insignificant compared to the quantity of fresh paint taken from the pot, and not enough to cause the marbling we sometimes see. Furthermore, leaving models with common trim-colour variations - such as 14b and 20a - to one side, I would say that we see more mixed-trim models than we do models with gold instead of silver trim. Would the dirty paintbrush scenario have been that common? Could it be that these gold-trimmed models are simply the result of an outworker running out of silver paint and wanting to finish her quota using the next best thing?
As regards Lesney's quality control, that may be a red herring. My impression is that, as far as they were concerned, provided the model was painted and had four wheels (ideally, but not necessarily, all the same size), it was fit for purpose and could be sold, and I would suggest that the significant numbers of untrimmed examples and models with detailing errors (such as unpainted side tanks on lorries) that we see for sale are proof of this.
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby Tinman » Sun Jan 08, 2017 7:06 pm

From past discussions which included various learned individuals and sources, painting of the models was outsource for not only the trim but for the bodies as well. This ended sometime during 1958. Outsourcing trim painting ended as well during that time.

The logistics of sending out all the body parts to be painted and then sending out all the bodies for trim paint became extensive. It cost time and money. Lesney could save both time and money by doing all the painting (parts and final trim) in house. This went hand in hand with the decision to buy out Moko, it was all part of cost saving measures and allowed the models to be made for less and to increase speed and profits buy cutting out the middle men. Lesney was now giving Bronner a cut and when you factor in Moko's cut of profit, another cut for the paint shop and yet another cut for the detail painters, the savings of doing this in house was an obvious decision.

The very reason that rear bumpers and lights were deleted from hand applied trim was to further reduce costs and speed things up. The next big cost saving measure was to switch to mask sprayed trim. Even mask sprayed trim saw cost cutting measures. Some rear end detailing of models was the first thing to be deleted from mask spray treatments. Towards the end of the regular wheels, even mask spray trim had become uncommon.

Anyone having more knowledge to add or revise the above comments are encouraged to respond.

However, once hand applied trim came to the factory floor, it didn't end in favor of mask spray trim. Several models continued to have hand applied trim for many years to come. Some models even received a mix of hand and machine applied trim. It should be noted that hand applied trim was mostly exclusive the YY range and the 1-75 range (Major & Kings) would be dominated by mask spray trim.

When the models switched from hand detailing outside the factory to being done in the factory, who knows if this had any effects on mixing up colors or mixing of the two paint colors. Since the move was made to cut costs and not improve quality or oversight, who knows.
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby DrJeep » Sun Jul 30, 2017 4:50 pm

In the middle is my 58a with what looks to be gold trim. It's code 1 - first decal, 7.5 mm grey plastic wheels on crimped axles, full ridge on rear of flat black baseplate. It's pictured with a code 19 on the left (black plastic wheels) and code 12 (grey plastic wheels) on the right. It's also a paler shade of blue than the other two.
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IMG_3828.png
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IMG_3827.png
58a trim colours
IMG_3827.png (365.44 KiB) Viewed 142 times
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby Idris » Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:52 am

Idris wrote:15a: I saw what appeared to be a gold-trimmed example on Ebay, but the photographs were rather poor and I wasn’t convinced. (It might have been mixed silver and gold paint, or even simply dirt.) It was also rather expensive and in Australia with high postal charges. For the record, this was either a variation code 3 or 4 (with ejector ring, MW, c/a).


Variation confirmed (otherwise as Nick Jones variation code 3):
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15a-1(s).jpg
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15a-2(s).jpg
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15a-3(s).jpg
15a-3(s).jpg (24.71 KiB) Viewed 102 times
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Re: Anomalous Trim Colour

Postby GHOSTHUNTER » Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:41 am

Looks very 'Gold' to me on my VAIO screen.

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