Northland VCC - April 2021

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RATTLES & sQUEAKS April 2021

The next generation of bikers getting some hands on experience. National Motorcyle Rally

Secretary’s Scribblings The year is flashing by and it is starting to get colder now, but make sure you keep your old cars drivable for runs in the colder months as well. There is not much new to report from a committee perspective, we are just getting on with the various Initiatives we have mentioned before, including events and the Far North Tour later in the year. It was great to see a good number of you out on the run to Rob Mulder’s collection on our last run. What an amazing collection of engines and machinery, with most of it in running condition. Rob says that next time we come he will have sorted out his upstairs collection of payolas so that we can look at them too. It was great to see so many of you from Dargaville come over as you have an extra 90km to add to the total for the day. Gill and I will be away in the South Island during April so we will miss the swap meet, but hopefully that will be well attended. A good opportunity to dispose of any unwanted parts and maybe find the critical missing bit for your restoration. For those of the two wheeled persuasion the Northland Motorcycle Rally is in May so there is plenty happening at present. I am hoping that you will come to the AGM on 13 June (This replaces the June run).

The club badly needs your support and we would be happy to have nominations for any of the officer roles including secretary. Even if you don’t wish to serve on the committee please attend and have your say. The meeting will be followed by afternoon tea. We look forward to see you there!


DATE: Sunday 18th. April - Depart Clubrooms 10.30am.

Northland combined clubs Swapmeet

Finish at Hukerenui Tavern (Free lollies!).

Sunday 11th April Heritage Park , Maunu Sellers from 6am to setup Gates open to public at 8am. $6 entry. Cash only - no eftpos on site. Recharging an electric car in 1905

Motorcycle Report What a great turn out for our March run with 12 bikes comprising of 2 AJS, 1 BSA, 1 Honda, 1 HRD, 1 Indian, 1 Kawasaki, 1 Norton, 1 Royal Enfield, 2 Triumph, and 1 Yamaha. Ron, Helen, Trevor and Lynora were at the start to see the bikes off, Trevor also took some photos. Leaving around 1pm heading through town onto Maunu Road heading west on SH14 through Maungatapere and turning off at Tangawahine through to Pakotai for a wee rest and then returning back to Whangarei. The weather was fine but very windy and a lot of seal patching repairs on the road, not easy riding but good fun none the less. The only thing that marred the day was an impatient motorist, who not only overtook a line of bikes and cars but was overtaking on corners. Just lucky no one was coming from the other direction. At the end of the run some of the riders attended a meeting at Peter Lovatt preparing for the Northland Motorcycle Rally scheduled for the 15 May 2021, book this date into your dairy it will be a good time for all. As some of you may know due to Covid 19 the National Motor Cycle at Masterton has been cancelled. We have been fortunate that some of there locals are still riding the Saturday rally, and the after tour rallies on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and there is an open invitation for anyone to joint them. I am lead to believe there will be a good turn out from all around the country. Six Northland branch members and 5 bikes will be attending. This Month was the largest turnout to date this year, we did miss some familiar faces hopefully we will see you riding next month. Safe riding through the year with rubber on the road. Cheers, Errol

In depth discussions at the Old Parakao Store.

March run to Rob Mulders Private museum. Some time back I had heard that Rob had a very interesting private collection at his place just out of town near abbey caves. I had met Rob through his work at the Machinery Club and knew that he was a large part of the enthusiasm which makes this very small club so impressive with its world class collection of old industrial engines and other machinery. Rob agreed to have us visit his private collection so we set it up for our March run. I hadn’t been there before so I was impressed with his large shed integral with his house (or was it the other way around?) In any event I am sure we all wished we had a set up like that. I think we had about 15 cars on the run including a number of Dargavillians, who of course think nothing of driving an hour or so just to start an event! Rob’s shed was impressive, and given that he had only moved his collection there less than 10 years ago, makes me wonder why I have achieved so little with my sheds in that time. I will just have to be more focussed… Rob has a few vehicles and other machinery but his main focus is on engines, the more-rare, the better. The collection has everything from small industrial engines of all eras, to marine and aircraft engines, to large plant engines. Rob started several, including a very large GM diesel which fired up and ran sweetly. Rob also has a passion for pianolas which are on a mezzanine level and which we will get to see next time we go. One of the stars of Robs collection is hiding in plain sight outside. The entire superstructure of a ship resides next to Rob’s shed and since its acquisition has served as living quarters on two sites. The moving of this 75 ton monster down Rob’s steep unpaved driveway would give health and safety and insurance professionals nightmares, but hey, it is there now! After a most enjoyable visit we drove over Mt Tiger to the Parua Bay Pub, where we enjoyed an excellent lunch before parting ways and heading off. Three carloads of us went on to Pataua where we had a wander over the bridge and watched hordes (Schools) of Parore? Milling about. Thanks to Rob and everyone who came along. Ray Sanders

Stationary Engines galore. There’s nothing like a thingamewhatsit to attract a crowd.

The “not the” 27th National Motorcycle Rally 2021 The news came through from the Wairarapa Branch that they had cancelled the National Motorcycle Rally due to the lockdown in Auckland, so we all cancelled our accommodation etc. The next day emails started going backward and forwards about turning up in Masterton anyway as the Bull family were still riding the medium rally and had invited anyone who was coming to the rally to join them. We all had to rebook accommodation again. 60 bikes in total turned up, six from Northland. We all met up at the Masterton Club on Friday night for a welcome and briefing. Saturday medium run to Martinborough following the road through Te Whiti and Longbush stopping in the Square at Martinborough for lunch. Returning back via Greytown and finishing at the Wairarapa Branch Clubrooms .We were all invited to a barbecue at Willie James place, he had told his wife Sharyn that there were a few people coming for a barbecue and think about 55 people turn up and Sharyn did a fabulous job feeding us all. Sunday 14th March was a free day to have a look around the local towns like Masterton, Carterton and Greytown and Featherston. Monday 15th March was the first day of the hub after tour runs starting at the VCC Clubrooms at Clareville, Carterton. We headed out toward Te Whiti and turned off towards Te Wharau Road to where the start of the “Cliff Hanger” hill climb is held. As we reached the bottom of the hill Robert and Lorraine Young’s BSA combination got a flat tyre on the rear tyre of the bike. They got picked up by one of the tailend Charlie’s and returned to Masterton where they quickly got on their back up bike a 1952 AJS and rode straight to the lunch stop at Whakataki Hotel. The rest of the bikes had a ride through the countryside passing Wainuioru Hall ,Langdale church and Tinui cafe then onto lunch at the Whakataki Hotel. After lunch we had a short ride to the Castlepoint lighthouse. We walk up to the lighthouse, then back to Masterton on the bikes. This was a 130 mile ride to the lighthouse. Tuesday 16th March we started our ride from the Masterton Club, we headed north from the clubrooms towards Whangaehu before regrouping at Alfredton Country School. Lofty had a fuel blockage on the way, but had no trouble fixing it on the side of the road. Robert gave the new entrants children a ride in the sidecar around the play field, two other combinations also gave rides too. Leaving the school we travelled north on the eastern outskirts of Pahiatua through Kohiuni to reach Woodville and visit a collection of bikes at Mangarawa and then to lunch at TUI brewery at Mangatainoka. This was a 144 mile ride and at this stage the heavy rain started just before we got to lunch. After lunch Lofty, Errol And Robert made tracks straight back to Masterton, about Mount Bruce the rain stopped falling and it was fine from there on. Lorraine stayed in Masterton and did some retail therapy with some of the other ladies. Wednesday 17th March we left the VCC clubrooms again and headed south on the western side of Carterton, joining SH2 and passing through Greytown and Morison Bush. We continued on down passed the eastern side of Lake Wairarapa and on to Lake Ferry Hotel for lunch. After lunch we headed eastwards through Ngawi Village and on to Cape Palliser lighthouse at the end of the road . What a climb to the lighthouse!!! What a good view and a beautiful clear day and a 100 mile ride down to the lighthouse. Guess who ran out of petrol on the way back to Masterton and was very lucky a kind farmer gave us 15 litres of petrol and wouldn’t take any money for it. This farmer showed us his 1939 BSA motorcycle and a 70s Ford Falcon coupe, both were in great condition. We all met at the Wairarapa Club for a farewell buffet dinner. What a GREAT BUNCH of Biking COMRADES. They were from all around New Zealand, from the Northland Branch there was Peter and Jennifer Lovatt, Cameron Francis, Maurice Voss, Martin Salter (Lofty), Errol Gray and Robert and Lorraine Young. The next National Motorcycle Rally is to be hosted by the Southland Branch 3rd to the 6th February 2023 and stay to enjoy the Burt Munro Challenge 8th to the 12 February. Robert, Lorraine, Errol and Martin.

At Cape Palliser

Dargaville Doings Summer has drawn to a close and the autumn leaves are falling, with still no sign of rain on this side of the island. However, St Patrick’s Day (Did he really drive all the snakes out of Ireland?) arrived and 21 “leprechauns” (well most were wearing some green) were ready to see what Von had conjured up for us. We drove around town streets looking for answers to questions before finishing at Memorial Park to settle under the shade of the trees for afternoon tea. Irish music boomed out and green muffins and green lamingtons were shared around. Each set of instructions had a different Irish joke attached which were read out causing much hilarity. Sue & Dave found the most correct answers. Toss the penny game (into a golden bucket sitting on a rainbow) ended with Bruce scoring the highest points. A fantastic way to finish the golden weather. Thank you Von and helpers for a great afternoon. A ‘new’ Austin has moved into town, so we may have another member. Next month, April 21st, will start as usual at the Boating Club Car Park, at 1pm. BYO afternoon tea, chairs etc. “What is the quickest way to get to Cork?” I asked the Irish farmer. “Are you walking or driving?” he said. “Driving” I replied. “Yes that would be the quickest way”.


Who is behind the mask with “Paddy Rob”? Bev, Bruce, Claudia and Ngaire; wearing’ the green.

What is it? Bruce found this in a collection. Can anyone identify it?

International law of wind resistance By the Apprentice. 1989 was the 100th Anniversary of the first tractor to arrive in New Zealand. So, as one does to commemorate these things, the Boss drove a tractor from Auckland to Wellington and back to Whangarei. Stopping at various Museums, A&P Shows etc on the way. From Wellington we were joined by tractor restoration enthusiasts for part of the drive and Vern Fairbrother, who instigated the whole idea. Somehow I got “volunteered” to drive the International as pilot vehicle and back up for the 1960 two cylinder John Deere which was towing a tandem axle trailer with a 1916 Saunderson on board, its steel tyres didn't allow it to be driven on the road. We carried a 60 litre drum of oil, 60 litres of diesel, water and some tools. Ivan had made a frame out of one inch pipe which fitted behind the truck cab. This frame held a sign, which sat above the cab and warned oncoming traffic of the following tractor rally. The sign was the width of the cab and two feet high. With twelve ton behind her the John Deere’s brakes were not brilliant so the Inter was also back up tractor stopper on steep declines or in case of an emergency. We did practice this but only had to implement it once - on the (then) new Tauranga Toll bridge when an idiot newspaper photographer decided he wanted to get the photo of the day. He very nearly got his car concertinered for his efforts. One had to be paying attention at all times! So, after a day at a show in Napier we were up bright and early ready for the long haul over the Napier/Taupo highway joined by a Fordson towing a John Deere B on a trailer, a Ferguson and two back up utes, one with a trailer. Vern was riding shotgun in the Inter with me as he often did on the trip. We stopped for a cuppa about half way, just before the long climb to the summit. Vern and I stayed behind to tidy up and let the tractors get ahead, knowing that I could easily catch them up and get to my spot at the front before too long. The Boss could only get 12 mph out of the John Deere downhill with a following wind. I caught up with the tractors and checked the road ahead. Knowing the Inter was quite capable of passing the line up I pulled out and passed the two utes easily. Had almost got passed the Fergie when I noticed two black clouds of smoke hovering above the summit of the hill. I knew that there was something big grinding its way up the other side. But that’s fine we’ve got heaps of torque and 107 hp - no worries! My right foot was almost pushing the accelerator through the cab floor. I knew the Inter was capable of doing the ton on the flat (scarey but possible!) and I had tried every trick I’d been shown to get a little bit more power out of those 107 horses. Still she didn't respond, not a glimmer. Stuck at 40 mph the Inter steadfastly refused to go any faster. We were opposite the Fordson, ahead of us the two belching chrome stacks of the oncoming truck were now visible. But that’s ok, if I can only get this slug to move we’ll be fine! We were level with Ivan’s trailer. The cab of the Kenworth and its load of logs was now visible on the brow of the hill. I had pulled over to the left as much as I could and was still trying to get more (any!) power out of the old girl. By this time Ivan would have heard his beloved truck’s engine screaming above the sound of his tractor. I knew he had nowhere to go as he risked tipping the trailer over if he got in the water table, the best he could do was slow down as much as possible without stalling on the hill. The Kenworth had cleared the brow of the hill and changed gear. I’d been involved in the trucking industry long enough to know that the driver wouldn't move from his line in the road. To do so would be fatal, nor would he brake as the logs he was carrying would then become 30 ton javelins and take out his cab before scattering all over the road. We were now opposite the John Deere. Vern, who up to this point had been sitting quietly in the passenger seat clutching the door with both hands, muttered “steady girl, steady”! He had survived crashing his plane during WW2, which left him with a permanent limp and probably was thinking he didn’t need any more shrapnel. Now was not the time to be “steady”, slow up or panic. But a few words to ones Guardian Angel may have done the trick. The chrome grille of the Kenworth was bearing down on us and I was pretty determined that we were not going to end up stuck to it, along with the assorted squashed fauna already there. We were almost neck and neck with the John Deere when there was an almighty bang from behind the cab and the Inter suddenly leapt off the road like a startled Antelope and took off. We got in front of the tractor just as the Kenworth roared past, with only inches to spare. A bit further up the road there was a Rest Stop, so I pulled in and came to a halt. Before the Inter had completely stopped Vern threw open the passenger door and headed off, at the rate of knots, toward the loos. I was more interested in what the bang behind the cab was and got out to check it out. The air pressure created between us and the Kenworth built up to the point that it had bent the two one inch pipes holding the sign above our cab - the sign now lay at a ninety degree angle, parallel to the canopy. The Apprentice learnt a lot about wind resistance that day!

Calendar of Events 2021

April Sunday 4th .

Motorcycle Run.

Meet at Frings at 1pm.

Wednesday 7th.

Morning Tea NVCC Clubrooms 10.30am. Please bring a plate.

Wednesday 7th.

Committee meeting after Morning Tea.

Saturday 10th. Sunday 11th.

Hotrods and Harley’s show.

Swap Meet. Starting at 7am. Entry via gate 2 at the Kiwi North grounds.

Wednesday 14th. Sunday 18th.

11am to 2pm, Day Street, Dargaville.

Dargaville meeting at 7.30pm. NW Aero Club, Hoanga Rd.

Peter and Bruce’s Run.

Wednesday 21st.

Leave clubrooms at 10.30am.

Finish at Hukerenui Pub for lunch/coffee.

Dargaville Mid-week Run 1pm at NW Boating Club Car Park.

Saturday 24th. NVCC Parts Afternoon 2-5pm.

May Sunday 2nd.

Motorcycle Run.

Meet at Frings at 1pm.

Wednesday 5th. Morning Tea NVCC Clubrooms 10.30am. Please bring a plate. Sunday 9th.

Mothers day Club run.

Wednesday 12th. Saturday 15th.

Dargaville meeting at 7.30pm. NW Aero Club, Hoanga Rd.

Northland Motor Cycle Rally.

Wednesday 19th.

Entries out now - contact Peter Lovatt.

Dargaville Mid-week Run 1pm at NW Boating Club Car Park.

Saturday 29th. NVCC Parts Afternoon 2-5pm.

June Wednesday 2nd Morning Tea NVCC Clubrooms 10.30am. Please bring a plate. Sunday 6th . Motorcycle Run. Wednesday 9th. Sunday 13th.

Meet at Frings at 1pm.

Dargaville meeting at 7.30pm. NW Aero Club, Hoanga Rd.

AGM at the clubrooms at 1pm.

Followed by afternoon tea.

Wednesday 16th. Dargaville Mid-week Run 1pm at NW Boating Club Car Park. Thursday 24th . NVCC Committee meeting Clubrooms 7pm. Saturday 26th .

NVCC Parts Afternoon 2-5pm.

Parts shed and Library open every Wednesday morning 9-12 noon. Check out the Northland Branch VCC Facebook page for more photos of club events etc.

2020 -2021 Office Bearers Northland Vintage Car Club Inc. Position Chairperson (acting)




Ray Sanders



Ray Sanders



Steve Cornwall

09 4025006

Newsletter Editor

Donna Nobilo

09 4376097


Roger Billing


Vice Chairperson 021437601


Peter Meares

09 435 2002

Allan Pearson

09 4376317

Gill Sanders


Peter Lovatt



Dennis Morgan

09 4338740


Lawrence Hillier

09 4346457

Allan Pearson

09 4376317

Peter Meares

09 435 2002

Rob Hughes

09 4591171

Lou Schoenmakers

09 4346802

Jim Shaw

09 4387028

Bert Parish

09 4389492

Hall Custodian

Peter Lovatt



Peter Meares

09 435 2002

Motorcycle Rep

Peter Lovatt


VIC Inspector

Allan Pearson

09 4376317


Martin Salter

09 4371969




Museum Delegate