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JCBamford 1

JCB founder Joseph Cyril Bamford and early workshop and trailer (JCB Anniversary Publicity Photo)

J.C.B was originally known as J.C.Bamford Ltd and was founded in a garage in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, England in 1945 with a £1 welding set by Joseph Cyril Bamford (born 1916 June 21).

History Time LineEdit

JCB 3D at SED

A restored JCB 3D at the SED show

Joseph Cyril Bamford set up business in a rented garage with a 2nd hand welding set, and the first product built was a farm trailer made of scrap, or as would now be called recycled metal and surplus parts, mainly a old Jeep axle, as it was just after the war rationing was still in place. He sold the first one at Uttoxeter Market, with the customer giving him his old trailer in part-exchange, which he then took to his workshop and set about repairing and improving the trailer. He then took that to market and sold the trailer to another farmer. He then started selling them via the local dealers. The next development was the introduction of a screw tipping jack and then hydraulic tipping in 1948.

The Early Years Edit

The next development was to build mechanical loaders to help with filling them. So he built a loader arm to fit on the Fordson Major marketed as the Major Loader.

This was followed by the Master Loader in 1951 a smaller version designed for loading farm trailers.

By 1953 the Si-draulic loader was being built this would go on to sell more than 6000 at £75 each. It was also made under licence in France were 20,000 were built.


The First Backhoe Loaders 1950's Edit

Fordson JCB MK1 Excavator at Cromford 08 - P8030349 edited

JCB Backhoe on a Fordson Major

JCB Hydra-Digga at Pickering 09 - IMG 3050

A restored JCB Hydra-Digger seen at Pickering Steam Rally in 2009

  • 1953 : The well-known JCB logo appeared. It was on a backhoe loader. He was a leading pioneer of the backhoe loading concept.

Then during a trip to Norway Joe saw a hydraulic backhoe, and bought one, as he could see the potential. He then proceeded to build his own version built on the Fordson Major, with a front counter weight or a front mounted compressor. But soon this was replaced with the Loader arm to make the Mark 1 JCB Backhoe Loader. 200 were built up to 1956.

  • 1955: New version of the Loader called the Loadall was introduced, still based on a Fordson Major tractor as the power unit.
  • 1958: He bought ten scooters with the number plates JCB1 to JCB10.

Next was a stronger and more powerful version called the Hydra-Digger. This machine started to attract the attention of earthmoving companies, as well as farmers.

The Two were combined to form the Hydra-Digger Loadall in 1956, and went on to sell 2000 + before production ceased in 1960. This was the first mass produced backhoe loader in the UK.

This was followed by the JCB 4 series which was popular with civil engineering contractors as JCB claimed the JCB 4C was a machine THAT COULD DIG THROUGH ROCK!!, and the 4C literly could with it's massive tearout forces, and soon afterwards the smaller JCB 3 series. This became very popular with the smaller house builders, as the need for lots of labours to dig foundations was removed. This was built in various versions up till 1980 when the New JCB 3CX range was introduced after several years of development. The designs main feature was the move to utilise separate Engine, Gearbox and transmission units, a move to reduce the reliance on external supplies of skid units.

Expansion and Takeovers 1960's Edit

JCB 7 excavator

Rare Restored JCB 7 Excavator

JCB 1 fitted with Petter engine

Restored JCB 1 (Grave Digger) Belonging to the J.C. Balls & Sons Collection

  • 1960: JCB started fitting their typewriters with a special key to accurately render the JCB logo.
  • 1960s: JCB hydraulic excavators entered the North American market, proving a long lasting success. It became, and still is, the brand leader in the world.
  • 1960s: The JCB Dancing Diggers team was started to demo-straight the companies faith in its hydraulic systems.
  • 1964: By now JCB had sold over 3000 3C backhoe loaders, particularly to customers in North America.
  • 1965 The company moved into 360 deg Excavator production with the building of the JCB 7 based on an American design by Hopto.
  • 1968 The JCB 7 Mk II was introduced.
  • 1969: JC Bamford was awarded the [[wikipedia:CBE|CBE for Services to Export.
  • 1969: saw the introduction of the JCB 5C with the revised 7C which was followed by the JCB 6, and 6C.
  • 1969 The Chaseside Engineering Companies range of Wheeled Loaders was added to the line up, and gave them 15% of the UK market.

1970's Edit

The Chaseside range was replaced by the New JCB designed 400 series loaders in 1971. The 400, 413 and 418 models. Then in 1973 the new 800 series 360 deg excavator range was introduced, with the 806 and 807 followed by the 808 2 years latter. with the older JCB 5C and JCB 7C discontinued.

In 1975 Joe announced he was retiring and handing over to his son Anthony.

By 1977 a new line was introduced in the shape of the JCB 520 Loadall Telescopic Handler.This was in response to Liner Concrete Machinery`s  introduction of the Liner Giraffe Telescopic Handler in November 1974.The JCB 520 was a good machine except for one vital mistake, its was launched with only two wheel drive. This proved to be disastrous in terms of rough terrain performance. One machine was seen to actually struggle to drive up the ramps of a low loader!, and in another case a salesman cancelled a site demo knowing it would not cope (witnessed by Laurie Hatchard of Liner) Jcb eventually realised their mistake and later launched the 525-4 model which had four wheel drive and proved to be a worthy match for the Liner Giraffe although it took some time to regain customers confidence.


By the end of he 1970's 72000 Backhoes had been built.

They tried to take over the Bamfords Agricultural implement manufacturer also from Uttoxeter, but failed and it was sold to the Burgess machinery group instead. The reason JOE BAMFORD'S bid for his UNCLE'S business failed was that JOE had beeen SACKED by his UNCLE when he worked as an apprentice engineer for Bamfords then went and started up on his own and made his company a bigger sucess than his UNCLE'S!!! That didn't go down well with his family members and JOE was given the cold shoulder when he tried to save his family's long standing business.

1980's The 3cx REVOLUTION Edit

The completely new designed 3CX was introduced, and sold 10,000 units in 3 years and a total of 100,000 machines since the start of the firm 40y earlier in a garage.

The JCB 3CX was followed by the larger JCB 4CX for Civil Engineering contractors with Equal sized wheels and the small JCB 2CX for Utility contractors working in city streets.

During the 80's they picked up a string of design and Export Awards.

The joint venture with Summitomo Construction Machinery to form JCB-SCM range of Modern 360 degree excavators. From these machines the current JS range has evolved.(Date Required)

JCB entered the ADT market in 1988 with the JCB 712 a 13 tonne capacity machine. They then added the JCB 716 in 1990 with a 17 ton capacity 139 hp 4-wd machine. By the mid 1990 they stopped production but returned in 2000 with the JCB 714 a 14 tonne machine with modern cab and a 125 hp engine. This was followed by the JCB 718 in 2001 and the JCB 722 22-tonne 6-wd machine in 2004.

The Fastrac Revolution 1990s Edit

The late 1980s lead to the Design of the 'Fast Tractor' this was the result of a major R&D project to build a new Modern Tractor. The tractor was launched at the 1990 Smithfield Show. The tractor was named as the JCB Fastrac and went into full production at the JCB Landpower Factory at Cheadle, Staffordshire in May 1991. The prototype having being tested in October 1987 after a year of design work. The Fastrac range cover the 120 hp to 160 hp size.

The New Millennium Edit

  • 2000: A JCB factory was completed in Pooler near Savannah, Georgia in USA.
  • 2001: JCB opened a factory in Brazil.
  • 2001: Joseph Cyril Bamford died aged 84. In his later life he was a tax exile.
  • 2004: Production started of the JCB 444 diesel engine. The first engine designed and manufactured by JCB.
  • 2005: JCB bought Vibromax (a German compaction equipment company). That was the first time since 1968 that JCB bought a company.
  • 2005: JCB opened a new factory in China at Pudong close to Shanghai.
  • 2006: JCB has 4000 employees, which is twice the level of 1975.
  • 2008: JCB opens new Heavy products factory on a site outside Uttoxeter, adjacent to the JCB World Parts Centre.
  • 2008: JCB shuts the old Bamfords factory in Utoxeter, following move to the new Heavy Products production unit.
  • 2009: JCB lays off temp staff and cuts hours due to downturn in markets.

Recent Take OversEdit

Over the years JCB has only Taken over 2 firms, preferring to design their own product range generally and expand through organic growth. But they did take over Chaseside in the 1970s to gain a foothold in the loaders market in the UK. And recently took over the German vibrating Compactor (Roller) Manufacturer Vibromax. They have never tried to be a "Full Line" manufacture offering every thing but have tried to be very good at what they do offer, not always the first but offering a better version, or a new variation on a theme.

Diesel Speed Record Achieved Edit

JCB Dieselmax - IMG 9853 edited

The record breaking JCB Dieselmax car

JCB have set in 2006 A New world land speed record for a diesel powered vehicle of over 350 mph using their own JCB engines in a custom build machine the JCB Dieselmax created specially for the attempt on the record. This uses two modified JCB 444 engines. JCB Dieselmax web page

Military Support Range Edit

JCB Military backhoe - IMG 9852

The JCB HMVEE backhoe version based on the JCB Fastrac

A range of vehicles custom designed to suit the military's requirements of being air transportable and robust with interchangeable parts.

  • JCB Military Loading Shovel
  • JCB Materials Handler
  • JCB 4CX Military Backhoe (Picture shows ). Not a JCB 4CX MBL as stated.
  • JCB HMVEE backhoe loader based on JCB Fastrac
  • JCB also designed and built prototypes for a new medium truck, based partially on the Fastrac chassis.                                                                                         
  • JCB supplies military versions of all their complete range of machines from the Petrol powered JCB Beaver Hydraulic Power Packs, Diesel generators, Fastracs, to Loading shovels, Telescopic handlers, Backhoe loaders, & the complete Tracked & Wheeled (360 deg) Excavator range, and have done so for the last 30 Years! to the Brittish Armed forces and other countries in Nato and America.

JCB Factories Edit

JCB Micro excavator

Micro Excavator

JCB Zero swing mower

Zero Mower

JCB 535 Telescopic handler

Telescopic Loader

JCB 8020 mini excavator

8080 Mini Excavator

JCB has built a series of new factories as demand grew. The new UK factories were state of the art when first built, using Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGV) to move parts about automatically. Some of the most modern facilities in UK manufacturing with advanced automation and CNC machine cells being deployed to produce in house major sub assemblies like axles.

  • Cheadle, Staffordshire. (JCB Compact Products Ltd., JCB Earthmovers Ltd., JCB Landpower Ltd. and JCB Groundcare Ltd.).
  • Foston, Derbyshire. (JCB Power Systems Ltd.).
  • Rocester: this is now the company's World wide HQ and production site for Backhoe Loaders and Telescopic 'Loadall' handlers.
  • Rugeley, Staffordshire. Hydropower (JCB Cab Systems Ltd. and JCB Attachments Ltd.).
  • Uttoxeter, Staffordshire. (JCB Heavy Products Ltd. and JCB Service Ltd [World Parts Centre]) (Formerly Special products, & JCB-SCM).
  • Wrexham, Clwyd. (JCB Transmissions Ltd.)
  • International Service Centers in
    • USA
    • France
    • Germany
    • India
    • Netherlands

Model RangeEdit

Main article: List of JCB models

Early MachinesEdit

  • Tipping Trailer (Screw) 1947
  • Tipping Trailer (Hydraulic) 1948
  • JCB Si-Draulic Loader 1951
  • JCB Major Loader 1948
  • JCB Master Loader 1951
  • JCB Hydraulic Excavator MK1 (First built 1953)
  • JCB Loadover 1953
  • JCB Hydra-Digga 1956
  • JCB 4 1960
  • JCB Dumpers - 15, 22.5 & 30 cwt. 1964
  • JCB 1 Digger 1963
  • JCB 2 Digger range 1964 (3 cylinder Nuffield engine)
    • JCB 2B - 1964 Detachable backhoe version
    • JCB 2BII - 1968-76 JCB 2CS LODER C/W 3 POINT LINKAGE & DETACHABLE BACKHOE 1968-1976
    • JCB 2D - WITH DETACHEBLE BACKHOE 1970-80 (Leyland 4/98 70 hp engine) JCB 2DS LOADER C/W OPTIONAL COMPRESSOR OR 3 POINT LINKAGE. Brockhouse Torque/Convertor option from start of production.
  • JCB 3 series - 1961 (Ford skid unit)
    • JCB 3 1961 (3 cylinder Nuffield engine) after 1962
    • JCB 3C - 1963 (4 cylinder Nuffield)
    • JCB 3CII - 1967 A Brockhouse Torque/Convertor transmission became an option from 1968.
    • JCB 3CIII - 1977 Manual G/box or from 1978 Turner Torque/Convertor Powertrain Transmission C/W JCB built MAX-TRAC Axles became available. Leyland 498 replaced Leyland 38TD from 1970. A Leyland Turbo 498 could be fitted if customer's asked for it in the Powertrain models.
    • JCB 3D - 1967 Brockhouse Torque/Convertor also available from 1968
  • JCB 4 series - 1960
  • JCB 5C- 1969-73 11 ton with a 77 hp Perkins 4.248 engine[1]
  • JCB 6 - 1966-66
  • JCB 7 - 1964-66 based on the American "Hopto" design & Ford engine
  • JCB 8C - 1971-74
  • JCB 8D - 1971-73
  • JCB 900 Loading Shovel Range (Chaseside derived models)
    • JCB 900 - 1963-1990
    • JCB 902 - 1971-73
    • JCB 1250 - 1970-73 Replacement for JCB 1000 Loading shovel
    • JCB 1500 - 1962-68
    • JCB 1750 - 1967-73
    • JCB 2000 - 1962-69
    • JCB 3000 - 1964-74
  • JCB Tracked Shovel range
  •  JCB 400 series loading Shovels (JCB designed range)
  •   JCB 413, 418, 423, 428 - 1973
  • JCB 428 Compactor - 1981
  • JCB 410, 420, 430 -  1981
  • JCB 412, 412 Farmaster, 415 - 1985
  • JCB 425, 435 - 1988
  • JCB 410M ( Military version equipped as a materials handler C/W forks & Turbo engine) - 1982                    

                

  •   JCB 800 Excavator Range - 1973-92 Various boom and track widths options (replaced by JS range)
  • JCB 805 Excavator 1976 BECAME 805B C/W POWERSLIDE BOOM FROM 1978-1983 THEN 805B TURBO 1983-85
  • JCB 806 Excavator 1973 BECAME IMPROVED 806B FROM 1975-1982 THEN RE-DESIGNED 806C FROM 1982-1985
  • JCB 807 Excavator 1973 BECAME 807B IN 1975 TILL NEW DESIGN 807C APPEARED FROM 1982-1985
  • JCB 808 Excavator 1975-1982 THIS 24 TON MACHINE WAS NEVER REPLACED UNTIL 1992 WHEN JS 240 APPEARED
  • JCB 811 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 REPLACED 805BT  JCB 811 CEASED IN 1989
  • JCB 812 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 BECAME 812 SUPER IN 1989
  • JCB 814 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 REPLACED 806C. BECAME 814 SUPER 1N 1989
  • JCB 817 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 REPLACED 807C THEN WAS REPLACED WITH 816 SUPER IN 1989
  • JCB 818 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 BECAME 818 SUPER IN 1989
  • JCB 820 Excavator P/SLIDE BOOM 1985 BECAME 820 SUPER IN 1989
  • JCB 802 Mini Excavator (Collaboration with Kubota) came in 1982 Ceased in 1986 then JCB 801 (100%) JCB design came in 1989.
  • JCB 500 series Loadall Range (Telescopic Handler) launched as the JCB 520 in 1977. The line up had grown to a 12 model range in 1995, with some models specially specified for Agricultural applications.
  • JCB 520M - 1981
  • JCB 520 HL - 1982
  • JCB 525 - 1980
  • JCB 525BHL - 1982
  • JCB 530 - 1980
  • JCB 530B - 1981
  • JCB 530BHL (11 METRE LIFT HEIGHT) - 1984
  • JCB 520HL FARM SPECIAL - 1984
  • JCB 540B - 1984
  • JCB 525-58 (Also farm special) - 1988
  • JCB 525-67 (Also farm special) - 1988
  • JCB 530-110 (11 M LIFT) - 1990
  • JCB 530-120 (12M LIFT) - 1990
  • JCB SL3000 Loading shovel (was a Chaseside a model)
  • JCB 712 1988 Dumper
  • JCB 716 1990 Dumper

Modern Machinery Line Up (post 1990) Edit

JCB JS 160 at work DSC00990

A JCB JS 160W in typical application on street works

JCB 530 120.

A JCB 530-120 at work on a building site

  • JCB 1CX Mini Backhoe Loader - 1994
  • JCB 2CX Range - Launched in 1990
  • JCB 3CX Range -The JCB 3C continued with a new design alongside the new 3CX, launched in 1980 along with new design 3D & the new 4C TURBO (Leyland 498 Turbo), all available with 4WD, the 3CX Sitemaster came in October 1981. From Nov 1982 leyland engines were replaced with Perkins 4236 engines after the Leyland factory strike. From Feb 1984 the 3CX & 3D came with the option of Turbo-Charged Perkins 4236 engines. From 1987 JCB introduced In-House built transmission's instead of Turner built Torque Converter/Gearbox's. From June 1987 the Perkins 1000 Series (Phaser) Engines were fitted bringing an increase in power and with the Turbo-Charged versions, a distinctive beautiful, (Hypnotic) whistle & howl from the Turbo through the stainless steel exhaust. The 3CX also came as the Hammermaster model specially strengthend for Hydraulic Breaker work. The JCB 3C continues today but only in foreign markets where they require a basic machine at a lower purchase price.
  • JCB 4CX Range - launched 1992
  • JCB Mini Excavator Range - Launched in 1989
    • JCB 801.4
    • JCB 801.5
    • JCB 801.6
    • JCB 803 - 1990
    • JCB 803 PLUS - 1994
    • JCB 802 - 1994
    • JCB 804 - 1995
    • JCB 8052 - 1999
    • JCB 8060 - 1999
    • JCB 8008 MICRO - 2004
    • JCB Dumpster - tracked mini dumper - 2006
    • JCB JS Excavator Range - 1992- current 360 excavators
JCB JS145 in ROI - IMG 2097

A JCB JS 145 on river works in Ireland

JCB JS145 at Droste (Flickr)-825

A Continental JS 145W

JCB 526-Agri and 531-Agri Teleporters - IMG 4570

A pair of JCB Agri versions of the 526-55 and 531-70 telescopic handlers

JCB 541-10 Agri Loadall at Strumpshaw 09 - IMG 0412

A new JCB 541-10 Agri spec c/w JCB engine

JCB 930 RTFL - IMG 4553

A JCB Rough terrain Forklift

JCB Teletruck loader IMG 4556

A JCB Teletruck compact loader

JCB Robot cw Sweeper collector brush - IMG 4554

A JCB Robot equipped with the JCB Sweeper Collector brush unit

  • JCB Fastrac Range- (for main article)
    • JCB Fastrac 1000 series
    • JCB Fastrac 2000 series
    • JCB Fastrac 3000 series
    • JCB Fastrac 7000 series just announced, available July 2008
    • JCB Fastrac 8000 series (High hp Range)
JCB Groundhog 6x4 - IMG 4551

A JCB Groundhog utility vehicle

JCB Engine unit OEM - IMG 4534

A JCB Engine unit for an OEM application as a static fire pump power unit, fitted with control unit

A Range of products are marketed by JCB with the Logo on Such as weotk wera and accesories commonly given out as corporate gifts.

The name is also used by other companies under license on various products, such as models , kids toys, power tools etc. as is done by Caterpillar Inc..

Engine / Skid unit usedEdit

JCB axles introduced for some models from 1978 built at the Wrexham transmission plant.

  • Rockwell axles in some earlier machines.
  • Schindler axles were fitted to the first JCB 3CX 4-wd versions from 1981[2]
  • ZF axles and gearboxes used in other models.
  • SPICER, NEWAGE, TURNER axles Etc have all been used by JCB over the years.
  • Today JCB try and use their own in-house built ENGINES, AXLES, TRANSMISSION'S, HYDRAULIC CYLINDER'S (Made in-house from 1964) as much as they can, but each division of JCB puts out a tender when they design a new machine to ITL (JCB TRANSMISSSION'S LTD) as well as outside manufacturer's, and whoever is the most cost-effective will get the contract, ( normally for a set number of machines, then it will be reviewed.

Cabs were built by outside contractors for many years but some are now built in house. At one time you would see lorries loaded with them on the motorway.

UK preserved machinesEdit

JCB 1D dumper of A. McLeod at cromford 2010 - IMG 0393

A rare JCB 1D Dumper seen at Cromford Steam Rally 2010

A few excellent restorations can be seen at UK tractor and steam shows during the summer.

  • A JCB 7 in the colours of Eric Warburton Plant was at Great Dorset Steam Fair in 2006. This is a 1966 machine SN 70258, exhibited by S. Warburton.
  • A JCB 4 Loadall belonging to Steffan was at Lincolnshire Steam Fair 2008
  • The JCB 3D shown at the top of the page was at SED 2008
  • A JCB 1 Digger (Grave Digger) was at Astwood Bank Show 2008.
  • Several JCB 3 series restorations have been featured in Classic Plant & Machinery Magazine over the years.
  • Restored JCB 3CII on show at Neath Steam & Vintage Show 2012 along with a project for sale in the Auction.
  • JCB also made a small dumper in the late sixties/ early seventies.{photo above) - It was rumoured to be in retaliation to Basil Thwaites building a digger/dumper ! Very few JCB Dumpers survive. They were around 15cwt and very similar to the Thwaites machine of the time. The engine, although saying JCB on it, was, I think, a Petter or very similar engine.[3]
  • A JCB 1 Digger and a JCB 1D Dumper were on the JCB Club stand at Tractor World show 2012
  • the JCB 1D Dumper was built from 1960 for TWO years but was stopped after poor sales. The JCB 1D was built long before Thwaites even existed. The engine in the 1D was built by JCB, being designed by JOESPH CYRIL BAMFORD himself. The JCB DIESELMAX was designed by JOE BAMFORD back in the early 80's but never came in to production as the costs were to high, until 2004 when JCB were making enough machines to make it worthwhile.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. CP&M, V7 No.5, p33
  2. CP&M V7 No.5, P8
  3. source Laurie Hatchard

External linksEdit

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