Wednesday, August 12, 2009

MATCHBOX: WEATHERILL HYDRAULIC EXCAVATOR




Construction vehicles always featured strongly in the ‘1-75’ range and the Weatherill Hydraulic Excavator (24a), in its two forms, remained for eleven years. It appear either with an orange-yellow or a plain yellow body, with a ‘Weatherill Hydraulic’ rear decal. The bucket could be raised or lowered. This model was the first to include model numbers cast on to the metal wheels and also the first model to have its number cast on the base. This numbering technique occurred because it was part of a ‘family mould’. In the manufacturing process a body, base and wheels would all be derived from one small mould. When plastic wheels were introduced in 1958-59, these could all be of a common type, and it was no longer necessary to number the wheels. Although most models were fitted with the appropriate wheels, there were inevitably some mistakes. Perhaps the most odd detail was that a model numbered as 24 was fitted with wheels which had ‘23’ cast upon them.

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