Benbros Mighty Midgets
No.42 Army Despatch Motorcycle
No.42 Army Despatch Motorcycle was the last military model in the Benbros Mighty Midget series and like No.41 Army Staff Car was a re-issue of an earlier item painted in army colours. In fact there were two former models used, No.3 'AA' Motorcycle and No.29 'RAC' Motorcycle. Both retained the original sidecars complete with logo signs on the front which were merely painted over.
The most common version of No.42 used the 'AA' sidecar and the second type screen from No.3 Motorcycle without logo. The first issue was painted all-over in matt army-green including the rider and the only addition was a dab of pale-tan trim on the rider's face. The sidecar retained the rail bars and the lifting lid although models were often sold with the lid sealed shut by paint. The 'AA' logo was clearly visible on each side of the pointed front and underneath 'Made in England' was included in the casting.
After a while, Benbros switched to a gloss-green colour for several of the military models in the Mighty Midget range and No.42 Army Despatch was one of these. This colour was used for both 'AA' and 'RAC' models, the 'RAC' version having a sidecar with rounded front, 'RAC' logo and without rail bars. These gloss-green variations appear to have sometimes been issued without screens.
The wheels on all the versions were solid unpainted metal with simulated spokes in the casting. The three wheels were the same size and fixed on with flat-head & crimped axles with large heads.
In keeping with the 'AA' version being the most common, the Mighty Midget box shows the same picture as on the No.3 box but without the 'AA' logo on the front of the sidecar.
All variations of No.42 Army Despatch are scarce and the RAC one is rare.
Variation 1 : matt army-green, 'AA' sidecar
Benbros No.42 Army Despatch Motorcycle
All models had Mighty Midget boxes
(1) MATT ARMY-GREEN incl. rider 'AA' sidecar
(2) GLOSS GREEN incl.rider 'AA' or 'RAC' sidecar
Estimated Price Guide
(MINT models in MINT boxes)
(1) : £40-50
(2) : £60-80
Variation 2: gloss-green, 'AA' sidecar
Variation 1: Matt army-green, 'AA' sidecar