Page 1

The Radiator Cap

July 2019 Newsletter 1


Anne Richardson

09 425 6298 / 021 277 9010


Peter Yarham

09 422 9685


Dave Oliver

09 945 0512 / 027 443 8046

Club Captain

Paul Hodder

09 422 4067 / 027 473 4350

CC’s Team

Neil Cremer

09 425 4955

CC’s Team

Frances Ross

09 425 8737

Rep to ExCo

Anne Richardson

09 425 6298 / 021 277 9010

Hospitality Convenors

Anne & Dennis McDonald

A: 021 214 2267 D: 021 265 2446

Social Convenor Neil & Lucy Cremer

09 425 4955

Property Supervisors

09 425 7622 09 425 6139

Health & Safety Brian Payne

09 425 9262

Vehicle ID

09 425 9928

George Lloyd Doug Hamilton

James Lawrie

Motorcycle Rep Dave Oliver

09 945 0512 / 027 443 8046


09 425 8737

Frances Ross

Editor/Reporter Chris Harvey

09 422 2662 / 022 365 0171


Dave Oliver

09 945 0512 / 027 443 8046

Add. Member

Leon Salt

09 423 8122 / 027 423 8122

Add. Member

Brendda Salt

09 423 8122

Branch address PO Box 547, Warkworth 0941 Bank a/c

BNZ 02-0480-0047413-000

Visit our website at

VERO agency No. 0300159

VERO free phone 0800 658 411

The deadline for contributions to the Newsletter is the 23rd of the month. The views expressed in this newsletter are not necessarily the views of the Branch. 2

Sun 30 June

Auckland | North Shore Combined Rally

Wed 3 July

12:00 Mid-week Café lunch: The Farmer’s Daughter, just before Omaha causeway The restaurant encourages you to come in your vintage car to make a spectacle of the event.

6-7 July

WINTER WOOLLIES WANDER starting at the Clubhouse 09:15 Briefing 09:30 First car away

Thu 11 July

17:30 Club Night: Pot Luck dinner

Wed 17 July

10:00 Coffee & Cleaning: please turn up and help

Thu 18 July

19:00 Club Committee meeting

Fri 19 July

Mahurangi Winter Festival of Lights. This is not a Club event but, if you wish to participate, dress up your vehicle for the parade with lots of lights—any theme. Arrive at Paper Plus carpark after 17:50 and set off at 18:30. Parking at the finish will be on the Wharf.

Wed 7 Aug

12:00 Mid-week café lunch at the new Bayside Café, Snell’s Beach

Thu 15 Aug

17:30 Club Night—Prizegiving after Bangers & Mash dinner

Wed 21 Aug

10:00 Coffee & Cleaning: please turn up and help

Thu 22 Aug

19:00 Club Committee meeting

Sun 25 Aug

Daffodil Day Rally: participants & volunteers please contact Club Captain Paul

Wed 4 Sep

12:00 Mid-week Café lunch

Thu 12 Sep

17:30 Club Night

Wed 18 Sep

Coffee & Cleaning: please turn up and help

Thu 19 Sep

19:00 Club Committee meeting

Wed 2 Oct

12:00 Midweek Café lunch followed at 14:30 by Summerset Falls Golden Day




ur annual Winter Woollies Wander will be upon us as you read this Newsletter. I hope everyone who wants to participate is looking forward to an enjoyable weekend, and the weather gods are kind to us. See Paul’s Report and the Calendar for all the information you need about future events. Which reminds me- our visit to the Shaw Brothers’ car sanctuary became waterlogged. It will be arranged again in the future when their land is drier! But what it did was to raise the issue of communication. The Newsletter is our main link to all members. The information about assembly and how the day will go is there to see. If an event has to be cancelled at the last minute we do not usually know who will be coming. We don’t expect you to book in advance. That gives you the freedom to decide in your own time, but it means that it is up to you to decide whether to turn up if it is a weather issue. The organiser will go to the assembly to catch those who do assemble at the start.

The Committee discussed what else could be done but booking and leaving the organiser with the job of contacting everyone would be too arduous. We did a small straw poll but no one looks at their computer early on a Sunday morning so Emailing would not help. And only a limited group of the Committee have the Email addresses for confidentiality reasons. Occasionally events pop up which we think members would like to know about after the Newsletter has gone out and which take place before the next one. We have been Emailing those we have addresses for to let them know. We do have a few members without computers. We have selected from that list those who are active and come to events, so we will ring them but those of you who don’t have access to Email, and would like to be notified, should contact our Club Captain, Paul Hodder. We are also looking at how we help new members to become involved in club activities and get badges etc. We have had a good number of new members in the last year so we need to involve them more- if that is their wish. If you have any ideas then talk to a Committee member or ring me.

Happy and Safe Motoring, Anne




he past month saw some interesting events starting with the Triple Combined Run on May 19th. Starting in Warkworth and winding across to the west coast, down through Makarau and back to Wenderholm for a picnic lunch. Then on to the North Shore club rooms to finish. Unfortunately, there was a low turn-out for this event. June the 5th saw a midweek run to the Puhoi Valley Cheese Cafe. This was a well-attended run: thanks to Neil and Lucy. Club night on June the 13th brought a good turn out to a mid-winter Christmas dinner! This was a wonderful, full-on Christmas dinner set off with decorations, crackers and piano entertainment. Then on June 16th, we took a Sunday run to Coatesville with brunch at the Fernielea Cafe. The turnout of 24 was quite good considering the main event of a walk through the Shaw Brother’s collection of cars being postponed due to wet weather. As to events for this coming month, on the 3rd of July, there will be a mid week run to the Farmer’s Daughter Cafe at the Omaha causeway. Lunch at midday. Then on the 6-7th of July is the Winter Woollies Wander with a briefing at 9:15 at the clubrooms. Till next time...may the potholes be few and far between, Paul



NAME BADGES lease contact Dave Oliver if you would like to order one of the new-look magnetic name badges. Please be sure to specify exactly how you want your name spelled so that there will be no nasty surprises when they arrive from the manufacturer.




fter reading in the newsletter about the defibrillator demonstration given to us in February by the three officers from St John, Alastair Mason very generously donated an Automated External Defibrillator ( AED ) to our branch. It will be stored in the bookcase just around the corner from the noticeboard where it will be easy to access, and it will be taken on rallies & runs by the Tailend Charlie or organiser. _________________________________________________________________________


idmas Dinner on 13th June was a most enjoyable event and a great success. Thanks to all those who contributed to make it so, whether it was preparing the delicious food or setting up & decorating or cleaning up afterwards.




ast month, Brendda and I, together with 47 others, participated in the Waikato Branch Double 50 rally. We had stayed the Friday night with our son and his family in Cockle Bay and the following day, in somewhat inclement weather, we took the backroads to Hamilton through Clevedon and Mangatawhiri before heading down Kokopu Road and around the back of the lake near Huntly to come out at Taupiri. Very little traffic on those roads, so despite the weather it was a relaxed and enjoyable drive. There was a good turnout of vintage vehicles with 12 entered and just 3 post-vintage vehicles. P60 vehicles made up the largest section. This year’s rally was organised by Glenys and Robert Braddock with assistance from a neighbour. The rally began with a timed section around the streets of Cambridge including a section of straight-line navigation. It was then out on the road heading west before coming upon Aotearoa Road which morphed into a road to rival any we can find around here. It meandered up and down, through patches of native forest and farm land with some great views. The road was little more than single lane with just a smattering of gravel over the clay – perfect for vintage motoring. We eventually followed Waipapa Road and came out on the highway between Mangakino and Kihikihi. Within a few miles we stopped for lunch at the Arohena Hall. The afternoon run started with a short timed section and continued back to Cambridge. There were no silent checks or questions during the afternoon run, which made for a relaxing journey, however we did need to remember the over-riding instruction to use Princes Street to stay on course at the end. Dinner was in the Waikato Cosmopolitan Club. When Robert had become ill, he and Glenys had decided to have a clean-out of unused gifts and prizes at home. Glenys, determined not to take anything home, had prizes for everything including those with the worst score! We enjoyed the weekend. The weather for the rally was good and the trip home was easy and uneventful. Leon __________________________________________________________________________


HONDA 350 FOUR ans Renner is trying to trace this motorcycle which was advertised on TradeMe in late 2018 but it did not sell. It has a red body and a black top. Please contact Peter Yarham if you have any information about it. 7



llan was only 18 when he became a founder member of the Wellington Branch of the Vintage Car Club, and many years later was a founder member of what was then the Wellsford Branch.

Over the years Allan was involved in many aspects of the club. He had a couple of Model Ts, then in 1961 he bought the Alvis 12/50 which he restored and used for the rest of his life. I am happy to say that his son Alastair has taken over ownership of this car so it stays in the family. He bought three other Alvis 12/50s during his early life in Wellington and they all still exist: I think they are now owned by Michael Curry, Martin Ferner & Pat Brenn. The one Pat owns was bought by Allan in Nelson with a tired V screen saloon body. The body was left at the Nelson tip and the rolling chassis was barged to Wellington. How times have changed!

In 1962/63 Allan went to England with his brother Colin and VCC member Malcolm Dickens. This coincided with the time that Len Southward took the 1904 Paris Motor Show Vauxhall over to compete in the London to Brighton run. Allan and friends had the chance to look after and drive this car in the UK before it was returned to New Zealand. They also bought a 3 -1/2 litre Derby Bentley which they brought back to New Zealand. This car is now owned by Gavin Bain. 8

As a young man, at Flock House Agricultural College, Allan saw the Vauxhall 30/98 that was owned by Bryan Witcherley. In 1979 Allan bought this car from Bryan Johnstone – father of the notorious Marty Johnstone, better known as Mr Asia. Allan really relished the Vauxhall. I remember a very spirited ride in it up to Whangarei in the early 80s to go to a VCC AGM. The car barely noticed the Brynderwyns - it was a really powerful beast. In 1988 John Southward bought the car, but Allan would never sell the original family Alvis. Allan was a true gentleman and an enthusiast of motoring in fine cars. He will be sorely missed by his family and friends. Paul Hicks




his is the story of our 1928 Chevrolet tourer. It has a 171 cubic inch four-cylinder motor with enclosed push rods and has never been restored—just repainted as close as possible to the original colour and maintained as required.

Back in 1970 I was working in Avondale after having finished a mechanic apprenticeship at Schofields in Newmarket, working on Chevrolets and Holdens as I just happened to like working on the older cars. From there I went to New Lynn Motors at Avondale, and shortly after that a new young apprentice, Roger Birchall, joined us. Yes, he had a brother, Barry Birchall, to whom I was introduced as he was into vintage cars big time. Barry then introduced me to his neighbour, Bob Rankin, who had a 1928 Chevrolet. I worked on Bob's car as a mechanic so I knew the car backwards. Bob had led me to believe it would never be for sale but unfortunately he took ill and was told he was not to drive his open tourer. In 1971 I joined the VCC and, as Barry was very involved in the club, I often marshalled on the monthly rallies for him. I was one of the start marshals on the 1972 International Rally in Auckland and thought at the time I should be driving in the Rally, not just standing watching the cars go by. At that time I did own a 1926 Paige which needed a major restoration, so I advertised for a complete car. We looked at many cars and nothing tempted us, and then Bob rang and said we need to talk. Talk we did, and guess what? We purchased the Chevy in 1975. At that time it was painted grey with black guards, so the first thing I did was remove as much of the trimmings as I could and drove her to Alan Roberts’ paint shop in Glen Eden for a repaint. Toyota Turquoise was the closest one-pot colour to the original, and she remains that colour to this day. 10

1928 CHEVROLET TOURER … continued After the repaint I took her to visit Bob and he asked if we had another car as it looked so very different. We have motored all over NZ Yes, we have had problems: most have been fixable, but she has been towed home a few times. I am the 5th owner, The original owner lived in Kaitia and was a cousin of my Grandma so the car is like a family member and has always been in the North and the Auckland region. We competed in most of the Auckland Branch rallies including the 24th Hunua 100 in 1982 which we happened to win, so we plotted the Auckland Branch Silver Anniversary National Rally. Yes, that’s me in the top hat & tails with the Hunua trophy. Now our travels. We entered the 1980 International rally in Rotorua and had a ball checking out here, there and everywhere as it was a hub rally. We also went on the 1986 International Rally in Christchurch: that was an exciting adventure which started on the trip down there. We motored from Auckland to Karapiro for lunch and Chevy boiled over when we stopped, Oh dear! I added water and carried on to Turangi, our overnight stop, adding water constantly and thinking the colder country would aid the travel being cooler, but it did not. Next day we set off very early, and yes, it was cold at 6 o’clock in the morning! At Waioru we stopped at the gas station, but we could not work on the car there so on the side of the road I decided I had to remove the head as I suspected we had a blown head gasket. Fortunately it had not blown so I replaced the head and carried on to Taihape, stopping many, many times, having decided that the radiator was the problem. I was told in Taihape that I would need to go to Palmerston North to get it repaired. We tried but the hills out of Taihape are too steep so we went back to Taihape where I checked out the back street repairers and found a car wrecker who repaired only Chevrolet radiators . Ha ha ! Finally someone to help. I had to remove the radiator myself while he had his lunch then he cleaned it out by removing top and bottom tanks because 90% of the tubes were blocked with small stones - probably thanks to somebody putting the stones in the radiator, because when I parked it anywhere I used to remove the Motormeter radiator cap. After this incident I have always put on a replacement cap when leaving the car. We left Taihape at 5 o’clock and pulled into Wellington at 11 o’clock much to the surprise of our host for the overnight stop. Yes, we really did fly as we were booked on the ferry the next morning, We arrived at the wharf to find the wharfies were on strike - so more delays. We did get our photo on the front page of the Dominion newspaper, along with many of the other vintage cars waiting to cross. The rest of that trip was a lot of fun with no problems. Last year’s Easter Rally in Auckland was a disaster—one of the few rallies we have not finished. First off on Day 1, at the morning tea stop, way out the back beyond Hunua, the


1928 CHEVROLET TOURER … continued carburettor had flooded. Never done this before. The cause was a split in the float and consequently its inability to float in the vacuum tank. John Stokes, as Tail End Charlie, eventually arrived and took me back to my motorhome in Papakura. Thank you John. I towed her back to our overnight park-over spot. Grant Williams offered to repair the float that night: thank you Grant. We refitted and all was well, Day 2, we motored to the start in Penrose and set off. Within 3 miles the left rear brake caught fire. We dealt with that by disconnecting the rear brakes. We secured the brake pedal with the strap that normally held the hood to the brackets when it’s folded down, and I used the handbrake only. We carried on only to run out of electrics: yes, the generator had stopped working. No worries—had a spare battery. Never carried one in all my travels before but fortunately this weekend I did. Sweet. Off again only to have fuel problems: cleaned out vacuum tank and set off again, but the problem persisted. By filling the vacuum tank with fuel we were able to carry on until I got cheesed off and threw in the towel and retired from the rally. I have since fitted a much better fuel filter and that seems to have fixed that challenge. Chevy is not used as often nowadays: it seems to be much colder traveling now. Perhaps we are not as young as we used to be 50 years ago. Went shopping in Wellsford recently and got thumbs up all round, from both locals and tourists. Now what’s for the next adventure? Beth said I have to retire so we can go. The roads are calling out to be driven on. Yes, we do hold up modern traffic but we have been paying road user charges for much longer than almost all of them. Robert & Beth Page




hat car is this?

Last month’s Mystery Motor was a 1971 Monteverdi High Speed 375/L Coupe. During the late 1950s and early '60s, Peter Monteverdi in Switzerland built, sold, and raced a number of "specials" called MBM, while at the same time developing the motor vehicle repair business founded by his father into a major dealership handling Ferrari, BMW, and Lancia brands. The relationship with Ferrari ended in 1963 when Enzo Ferrari demanded that Monteverdi pay up front for a shipment of 100 cars, which Monteverdi refused to agree to. By 1967, he had decided to undertake series production of exclusive high-performance luxury sports and touring cars. The first model, the twoseater Monteverdi High Speed 375/S coupÊ, was launched at that year's Frankfurt Motor Show and received very positive reviews. This was followed by the 375/L which was a luxurious 2+2 designed and built by Carrozzeria Fissore in Italy. The elegant car was the product of the well-tried formula of European style with American muscle and was powered by a 440 cubic inch (7.2 litre) Chrysler engine which developed 375 BHP.


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Wellsford VCC - July 2019  

Wellsford VCC - July 2019