ERF LV Gardner 100

I have recently been watching some utube video of an ERF LV Gardner 100 (54G). A lovely lorry, if they made these today they would still get the job done, slowly yes, but reliably and economically. The lw gardner was essentially unchanged from 1933 to 1973, because it was a good product with a focus on quality and whole life costs. 10.5 ton payload within 16ton gross at 14-15mpg. A new product may be cheaper or have more bling initially but is it really better? I used to see these 4 wheelers come into Barrow in the late 70s, they had a very light chassis that swept up to minimum depth just behind the fuel tank - very impressive I thought. Driving down the A49 recently I saw dozens of six axle sleeper artics parked up in laybys with no driver facilities. Progress? Possibly not. Any views on progress or experiences driving these classic lorries?

Hiya …eeerrrrrmmmmmm not so slow, at harrisons of bucknell where i worked in the 70,s we had a h reg
54g. it had a two speed back axle and trundeled along at 65mph no trouble. the 54g did sound slowish but was
not as bad as some drivers think. i would think if the vosa men did,nt stop every old truck they see i would think
you could make a fair living nowadays with one its just the image of a customer putting his product on a old
looking truck that did,nt look like it would make the trip. back in the 60’s and 70’s Gordon Plant of macclesfield
run many 54g’s.about 70. not many if any did’nt make its journey, not one of his ERF’s had a oil leak. his work was ICI
and the job got done well.

We had seven of them and the standard spec 54Gs top speed was about 54mph even with 2-speed axle so the one you are on about must have had a none std. diff to manage 65 I new a lot of drivers from other companies that ran them and never heard of a Gardner engine one doing more than 50 odd. I remember one of D M Smith’s of Strathaven being asked if they ever gave much trouble the answer was NO SON NEVER THEY DONT GO BLOODY HARD ENOUGH TO GIE ONY TROUBLE. Eddie.

hiya…i think you’ll find any HD eaton diff will exchange from caseing to caseing. harrisons only run ERF’s for years.
gordon harrison knew which diff to have and had a truck breaker to always tell him if he’d got trucks coming in.
gordon had a erf (wcv126j) ex richards and osbourne fradden that was a 54mph lorry. when it was turned out
with a paint job and diff it was ripping in at just over 70mph.i was in the lorry one day, a driver come up to me
and asked what had been done to the truck, when i asked why, he said it was his for 6 years and it was only a 54mph lorry.
he told me i’d overtaken him in his newish erf 240 64 mph lorry. i just smiled and said new diff.
oh can i also say i served my 5 year apprentice ship at sun works.

Sadly I was one of the team that moved the last bits of plant out of the Sun Works. We used Erf artics for the job and I recall there wasn’t the usual cheery banter flying around. It was one of those occasions when I wished I had taken my camera with me.

When I started at Len greens in 67 they were using 5pot erf arctics,running helical bar from parkgate to sutton in ashfield,three loads a day but they got the job donethis is an earlier model,the ones I remember had kv cabs

Aye they maybe could crack on when they were on the flat but when you came to Shap or Galabank at Bowes your fast machines would be struggling and the bottom cogs in the box would be required. Also fuel economy would be seriously compromised. We also ran TS3 COMMER Maxiloads which could hit the sixties but the speed bit went for nothing as like any other firm we had our regular digs so the fact you had a faster motor went for nothing as we all went the same distance. Eddie.


ERF MARQUE SUNRAYS RADIATOR GRILLE BADGE,on a KV double oval radiator grille,plus a Gardner 6LX 150 badge:-

ERF is a top quality motor vehicle marque,so it’s not suprising that many gave long service lives to their owners,including many travelling showmen,and a considerable number of Gardner 5LW20 100 and Gardner 6LW20 120 diesel-engined ERF LV 5.4G,LV 6.4G and (from 1972) LV LAG160 4x2 Lorries,made from 1968 to 1975,and the earlier LV Gardner 5LWK and 6LWK diesel-engined models ended up as fairground vehicles.And here are two examples :smiley: :-

ERF LV 5.4G,GARDNER 5LW20 100 DIESEL-ENGINED,LUTON VAN-BODIED,4x2 FAIRGROUND LORRY,CHASSIS No.22401,FTN 896K,Thursday,9th September,1971.Bradford,West Yorkshire:-

ERF LV LAG160.O11,GARDNER 5LW20 100 OR 6LW20 120 DIESEL-ENGINED,BOXVAN-BODIED,4x2 FAIRGROUND LORRY,CHASSIS No.24314,KMA 634L,Wednesday,4th October,1972.New to G.Plant.Hull Fun Fair:-


Thanks for all the comments, and the pictures. any more out there? I think there were quite a few option ratios for the eaton 18802 two speed axle, it would seem that the 54mph version was the standard spec. There is an excellent Gordon Plant picture of about seven LV cab ERFs on the Cheshire hauliers thread, beautifully liveried and roped & sheeted, it would be good to see more pictures like it. I also remember that Showerings (babycham) had a lot of these motors.

Does anyone have a side on picture of the taper chassis? (Hopefully an easier ask than Dennis’s 8 pot Guy big J!)

The ultimate 16ton 4 wheeler has to be the ERF 4 wheeler,taper chassis,with the Perkins 6:354 engine and Eaton 2 speed axle.There was an operator in Milnthorpe called Larry Ion who had sold his main haulage business to Davy & Co (Grange) Ltd in 1964/5 but kept one 4 wheeler on a lucrative job.He then bought a new ERF with the spec I’ve described,a “C” reg motor which had an extremely light wood/ali flat and it could carry a payload of 11ton 5cwt at 16ton GVW which was quite an achievment in those days.However,the Gordon Plant fleet of 4 wheeler ERF’s was the pinnacle,what a fine set of motors they were,a true haulier if ever there was one ! :slight_smile: Cheers Bewick.

Hiya …dose John smile of Govan come into a big user of ERF 54 G lorries. IICR he run quite a few 4 wheeler’s as well as artics.

Aye they had a tidy fleet John Smillie was a Rangers fan and if there was a Wedensday night home game on as many motors as possible were scheduled to be home. The story was the A74 was like a race track as the fleet tried to get home in time for the game. Eddie.

Sorry I haven’t got a better photo but that is JTU 513G, J Haydon’s 5 pot in 1986 which had unfortunately come second in a head on. Think it went off to the knacker’s yard :cry:

Inside the cab, the driver’s side was stained dark yellow as driver George smoked about 60 Woodbines in there, a day!

Does anyone have a side on picture of the taper chassis? (Hopefully an easier ask than Dennis’s 8 pot Guy big J!)

Any good?