This controlled retrospective study aimed to identify the contribution of skeletal and dental changes in the correction of Class II division 1 malocclusions using Fränkel's functional regulator II (FRII), with reference to a concurrently recruited control group. One hundred and thirty-eight patients with Class II division 1 malocclusions were identified, those accepting treatment forming the study group and those declining treatment the control group. The study group (n = 70) were treated with a Fränkel appliance. Pre- and post-treatment observation cephalometric radiographs were analysed and compared. Mean values for both skeletal and dental variables in the control group were remarkably consistent throughout the study period; however, this masked individual variations in this group. The skeletal variables in the study group that showed statistically significant differences from the control group were SNB, ANB, BaNA and ANS-Me, but none of these was sufficiently large to be regarded as clinically significant. Dental variables showed clinically and statistically significant differences, including a 10 degree reduction in UI-Max and 3.1 degree increase in LI-Mand. The Fränkel appliance was thus found to be effective in producing desirable occlusal and dental changes in the majority of patients treated.