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The Sky Busters are die-cast model aircraft produced under the Matchbox brand, initially by Lesney Products and later by Mattel.

History[]

Lesney began the Skybusters in 1973, producing them with their other Matchbox toys in London, England. During the 1970s, Skybusters competed against Dyna-Flytes, produced by San Diego based Zee Toys.

Skybusters combined military and commercial aircraft models at their earlier stage. The United States Air Force, Air France, Federal Express, Lufthansa, and QX Express were among the first brands to advertise with Skybusters. Some of the first Skybusters released represented Learjet, Airbus A300, Boeing 747 and Corsair A7D airplanes.

The line appeared intermittently until the 2000s, when Mattel decided to release the models each year. The line tends to offer a mix of licensed paint schemes representing real-world companies, and fictional airline names, such as Matchbox Airlines. The list of companies advertising through licensed Skybusters models continues to vary.

Sky Busters have been made in different countries. so here is the list of countries and circa years made: ENGLAND,1973-1982/ MACAU,1984-1989/ THAILAND,1990-1993/2009-PRESENT/ CHINA,1994-2008

Sky Busters (SB)[]

SB-157

Matchbox Sky Busters Can Be identified By A Mark usually On The Bottom Of The Wing. For Example SB-157. Meaning Sky Busters 157. The 157th Matchbox Sky Buster Is A Lockheed P-38 Lightning

MODEL NAME: / circa YEAR(S) PRODUCED:

SB-1 LEARJET / 1973-1996

SB-2 CORSAIR A7D / 1973-1989

SB-3A AIRBUS A300 / 1973-1981

SB-3B NASA SPACE SHUTTLE / 1979-1996

SB-4 MIRAGE F1 / 1973-2001

SB-5 STARFIGHTER F-104 / 1973-1984

SB-6 MIG-21 / 1973-2002

SB-7 JUNKERS 87B / 1973-1986

SB-8 SPITFIRE / 1973-1986

SB-9 CESSNA 402 / 1973-1997

SB-10 BOEING 747/ 1973-1997

SB-11 ALPHA JET / 1973-1990

SB-12A SKYHAWK A-4F / 1973-1979

SB-12B PITTS SPECIAL / 1979-1996

SB-13 DC-10 / 1973-2008

SB-14 CESSNA 210G / 1973-1981

SB-15 PHANTOM F4E / 1973-2002

SB-16 CORSAIR F4U-4 / 1973-1991

SB-17 RAM ROD / 1975-1981

SB-18 WILD WIND / 1975-1991

SB-19 PIPER COMMANCHE / 1977-1995

SB-20 HELICOPTER / 1977-1987

SB-21 LIGHTNING / 1977-1991

SB-22 TORNADO / 1977-2006

SB-23 SUPERSONIC AIRLINER / 1978-1997

SB-24 F-16 / 1979-2007

SB-25 HELICOPTER RESCUE / 1979-2004

SB-26 CESSNA 210 FLOATPLANE / 1982-1997

SB-27 HARRIER JET / 1982-2001

SB-28 AIRBUS A-300 / 1982-2004

SB-29 SR-71 BLACKBIRD / 1989-2003

SB-30 F-14 TOMCAT / 1989-2003, 2018-PRESENT

SB-31 BOEING 747-400 / 1989-2000

SB-32 FAIRCHILD A-10 THUNDERBOLT / 1989-2017

SB-33 BELL JET RANGER / 1989-2002

SB-34 LOCKHEED C-130 HERCULES / 1989-1994

SB-35 MIL MI-24 HIND / 1989-2000

SB-36 LOCKHEED F-117A / 1989-2002, 2019-PRESENT

SB-37 BAE HAWK / 1992 ONLY

SB-38 BAE 146 / 1992-1996

SB-39 STEARMAN / 1992-1993

SB-40 BOEING 737-300 / 1992-1994

SB-41 BOEING 777-200 / 1997-2005

SB-42 MCDONNELL DOUGLAS MD-90 / 2000-2007

SB-43 CESSNA CITATION / 2000-2004

SB-44 RESCUE HELICOPTER / 2002-2007

SB-45 STEALTH FIGHTER / 2002-2005

SB-46 ATTACK JET / 2002-2005

SB-47 N/A

SB-48 N/A

SB-49 N/A

SB-50 BUSINESS JET / 2003-2006

SB-51 MILITARY HELICOPTER / 2003-2005

SB-52 TRANSPORT PLANE / 2003-2005

SB-53 N/A

SB-54 FIGHTER JET / 2004-2005

SB-55 RESCUE HELICOPTER / 2008-PRESENT

SB-56 RESCUE PLANE / 2002-2006

SB-57 SEARCH PLANE / 2002-2006

SB-58 TRANSPORT HELICOPTER / 2002-2012

SB-59 N/A

SB-60 N/A

SB-61 TRANSPORT PLANE? / 2006 ONLY

SB-62 AIRLINER / 2004-PRESENT

SB-63 N/A

SB-64 MISSION CHOPPER / 2004-PRESENT

SB-65 CESSNA CARAVAN / 2005-2015

SB-66 BOEING B-1B LANCER / 2005-2008

SB-67 BOEING 777-200 / 2006-2008

SB-68 BOEING 747-400 / 2007-PRESENT

SB-69 HYDRO PROP / 2007-2011

SB-70 HYPERSONIC JET / 2007-2015

SB-71 BOEING 737-800 / 2008-2010

SB-72 SKY CARGO / 2008-C.2016

SB-73 STUNT PLANE / 2008-PRESENT

SB-74 TILT ROTOR / 2008-2010

SB-75 CESSNA CITATION X / 2008-PRESENT

SB-76 BOEING F/A-18E SUPER HORNET / 2008-PRESENT

SB-77 BOEING 787-8 DREAMLINER / 2008-2011

SB-78 NORTHRUP GRUMMAN B-2 / 2008-PRESENT

SB-79 ROBINSON R44 RAVEN II / 2008-PRESENT

SB-80 NEW STUNT PLANE / 2009-2013

SB-81 SIKORSKY S-92 HELICOPER 2009-PRESENT

SB-82 PUSHER PROP

SB-83 TWIN BOOM

SB-84 SEA PLANE

SB-85 BIPLANE-A

SB-86 AIRBLADE

SB-87 TWIN ENGINE BLAZE BUSTER

SB-88 DIVE BOMBER

SB-89 SPACE SHUTTLE ORBITER / 2011-PRESENT

SB-90 LOCKHEED MARTIN F-35B

SB-91 CIRRUS VISION JET

SB-92 STEALTH LAUNCH

SB-93 SNOW EXPLORER

SB-94 DRONE

SB-95 LOCKHEED F-117 NIGHTHAWK

SB-96 EURO FIGHTER TYPHOON

SB-97 BATTLE RAPTOR

SB-98 SEA ARROW

SB-99 BOEING AH-64 APACHE

SB-100 BLADE FORCE

SB-101 TILT ROTOR II

SB-102 AERO BLAST

SB-103 TWIN BLAST

SB-104 FLIGHT STRIKE

SB-105 SUBSONIC INTERCEPTOR

SB-106 TURBO TORNADO

SB-107 SKY SCORCHER

SB-108 SKY SAFARI

SB-109 THE BAT

SB-110 RESCUE BLADE

SB-111 AIR BLITZ

SB-112 FLYING CAR

SB-113 FANG FIGHTER

SB-114 STRATO SAUCER

SB-115 DUEL TAIL

SB-116 STRATOS STORMER

SB-117 AIR GRABBER

SB-118 GEE BEE

SB-119 BOEING F-15 EAGLE

SB-120 SKY SENTRY

SB-121 SKY SHREDDER

SB-122 BACK DRAFT

SB-123 HYPER JET

SB-124 ROTO WARRIOR

SB-125 BATTLE BOMBER

SB-126 TILTIN' TURBO

SB-127 N/A

SB-128 BAT WING

SB-129 SKYCLONE

SB-130 METAL EAGLE / 2016-2017

SB-131 HONDA JET / 2016-PRESENT

SB-132 SEA SOARER / 2016-PRESENT

SB-133 STUNT PLANE / 2015-2019

SB-134 MBX HYPERSONIC JET / 2021-PRESENT

SB-135 CESSNA CARAVAN / 2018-PRESENT

SB-136 ROCKET FYR-1 / 2017-2019

SB-137 BOEING 747-8 / 2017-PRESENT

SB-138 CLASSIC ATTACK / 2017-PRESENT

SB-139 AIRBUS A400M / 2017-2019

SB-140 STRIKE HAWK / 2018 ONLY

SB-141 AERO JUNIOR II / 2019-PRESENT

SB-142 FLYING DAGGER / 2019-PRESENT

SB-143 DREAM CHASER / 2019-PRESENT

SB-144 RUTAN BOOMERANG / 2019-PRESENT

SB-145 AIRBUS HELICOPTER H130 / 2019-PRESENT

SB-146 N/A

SB-147 CH-47 CHINOOK/ 2019-PRESENT

SB-148 MBX PRIVATE JET / 2019-PRESENT

SB-149 N/A

SB-150 N/A

SB-151 DARKSTAR / 2020-PRESENT

SB-152 ENEMY STRIKE JET / 2020-PRESENT

SB-153 NORTH AMERICAN P-51 MUSTANG / 2020-PRESENT

SB-154 MBX CROP DUSTER / 2021-PRESENT

SB-155 N/A

SB-156 BUBBLE COPTER / 2021-PRESENT

SB-157 LOCKHEED P-38 LIGHTNING / 2021-PRESENT


Skybusters production line by date of casting initial release[]

1973[]

Series No. Model Name Brand Notes / Features Photo
SB-1 LearJet Gates Learjet (SB-1 England).jpeg
SB-2 Corsair A7D Ling-Temco-Vought Corsair A7D Green 1973 .jpg
SB-3 A 300B Airbus Airbus a300 sb3.jpg
SB-4 Mirage F1 Dassault Matchbox Mirage F1 (red).jpg
SB-5 Starfighter F-104 Lockheed Starfighter F-104 (SB5).jpg
SB-6 MIG 21 Mikoyan-Gurevich MIG 21 (1975).jpg
SB-7 Junkers 87B Junkers Matchbox Sky Busters Junkers 87B (green).jpg
SB-8 Spitfire Supermarine Matchbox Sky Busters Spitfire (green & gold).jpg
SB-9 Cessna 402 Cessna Cessna 402 no tail number.jpg
SB-10 Boeing 747 Boeing Boeing 747 british airways v1 1973.jpg
SB-11 Alpha Jet Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jet (SB-11, Red & white).JPG
SB-12 Skyhawk A4F Douglas Skyhawk double roundels 1973.jpg
SB-13 DC10 McDonnell Douglas Dc 10 swissair red base 1973.jpg
SB-14 Cessna 210 Cessna Cessna 210 orange 1974.jpg
SB-15 Phantom F4E McDonnell Douglas F4 phantom white proto 1973.jpg
SB-16 Corsair F4U-4 Vought SB-16 Corsair MatchBox 1973.jpg

1975[]

Series No. [1] Model Name [1] Brand Notes / Features [1] Photo
SB-17 Ram Rod Matchbox Ramrod.jpg
SB-18 Wild Wind Matchbox Wild wind.jpg

1977[]

Series No. Model Name Brand Notes / Features Photo
SB-19 Piper Commanche Piper Piper Comanche (SB-19).jpg
SB-20 Army Police Helicopter Generic Helicopter (SB-20, green).jpg
SB-21 Lightning English-Electric Lighting green 1978.jpg
SB-22 Tornado Panavia Tornado.jpg

1978[]

  • Panavia Tornado
    • Various generic types, colors
    • Flight System
    • German Air Force
    • Rescue Helicopter
    • Royal Air Force

1979[]

  • Helicopter Rescue
  • Supersonic Airliner Supersonic Airliner (1979).jpg
    • Air France
    • British Airways
    • Supersonic Airlines (fictional)
    • Heinz 57 (promotional issue for ketchup company, Heinz)
  • F-16
    • Various generic types, colors
    • Israeli Defense Force
    • United States Air Force

1980[]

1981[]

  • Cessna Float Plane
    • Various generic types, colors
    • James Bond
    • National Park Service
  • Harrier jet
    • Various generic types, colors
    • Royal Air Force
    • Royal Navy

1983[]

  • Airbus A300
    • Air Malta
    • Alitalia
    • Federal Express
    • Iberia
    • Korean Air
    • Lufthansa
    • Swissair

1988[]

  • Piper Comanche
  • Lear Jet
  • NASA Space Shuttle
  • 747 KLM
  • Air France Supersonic
  • Korean Air - Air Bus
  • DC10 Aero Mexico
  • Cessna DHL
  • 747 Pan Am
  • DC10 Thai
  • 747 Lufthansa
  • Pitts Special Virgin Atlantic

All names written as they are printed on the product card (including spelling errors). Made in Macao.

1990[]

  • Bell Jet Ranger helicopter
    • Generic, white
  • Boeing 747
    • British Airways
    • Cathay Pacific
  • Fairchild A-10 Thunderbolt
    • Various generic types, colors
    • United States Air Force
  • Grumman F-14 Tomcat
    • Various generic types, colors
    • United States Air Force
    • United States Navy
  • Lockheed C-130 Hercules
    • United States Coast Guard
  • Lockheed F-117A Nighthawk
    • Generic, black
    • United States Air Force
  • MIL M-24 Hind-D helicopter
    • Various generic types, colors
    • Russian Air Force
  • SR-71
    • Generic, black and red
    • NASA
    • United States Air Force

1992[]

1994[]

  • USAF F16A
  • British Airway SST
  • National Parks Service Ski Plane
  • British Airway 747
  • Desert Storm A-10
  • Marine Harrier
  • USAF Stealth Fighter
  • Bell Jet Ranger Helicopter
  • Virgin Airways Biplane
  • Continental 110
  • Russian Hind Helicopter
  • NASA Space Shuttle

All names written as they are printed on the product card (including spelling errors). Made in China by Tyco.

1997[]

2000[]

  • Cessna Citation
  • MD-90
    • Matchbox Worldwide (fictional)
    • D.A.R.E (Promotion for the anti-drug program D.A.R.E)

2002[]

2003[]

2004[]

2006[]

[1]Matchbox Boeing 787-8 in Boeing House Colors.*2007

2008[]

2009[]

  • Pusher Prop

2010[]

2012[]

  • P3030001.JPG
    Cessna Citation X



References[]

This page incorporated text and coding from the Wikipedia article on this subject.

This page incorporated text and coding from SKYBUSTERS (SB)

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1975 Matchbox Collectors Catalogue
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