Were they all the same?
The idea for this post came from Laurie's FFAF, about the Filofax range of old.... was it all luxury items? We only hear about those ones we still love to this day. The Winchester is I think one of the most popular older models, but what about the others... yes there were some non-leather models, these had model numbers such as 2VR 7/8. We don't see so many of those models these days, most probably in the back of office drawers long forgotten.
Go up the model range a little bit to the 2CLF 7/8 and this has a leather exterior, but part of the interior is plastic... the leather has a deeper gain pattern too. Then the Winchester or 4CLF 7/8 (the 7/8 indicates the ring size in inches) this is all leather.
So here are some pictures to compare the two.
Open them up and you will see a difference. The 2CLF just has simple pockets in the front and back covers, The pocket with 'Ali' on it is in leather, but the material covering the rear of the outer cover is PVC or a thin plastic.
The interior of the pockets on the Winchester (4CLF) is in a textile material, no different to a modern day Finsbury. But the flaps on the pockets which also act as protection for the rings is leather.
Neither model has credit card slots, credit cards as we know them became very common in the 1970s although they have been around a lot longer than that of course. So why the Filofax designers left them out I don't know.
Both of them use the same ring mechanism, so no reduction in quality there.
Looking at the back you can see that the clasp attachment to the main body is the same. The lower picture is the 2CLF also characterised by the deeper grain pattern.
Both organisers where bought in the mid 1980's may be 9-10 months apart, the 2CLF is the 'newer' one of the two!
So in answer to Laurie's question, yes they did make 'cheaper' models back in the early days, and in a way the differentiation between the price ranges and their construction isn't that different to the model ranges we see today.
If anyone of influence at Filofax is reading this then I'm sure there are plenty of 'enthusiasts' who would love to be able to buy a new Winchester.... or similar... 'Hint hint' !!!!