Author Topic: Messerschmitts, Germany  (Read 2214 times)

Big Al

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Messerschmitts, Germany
« on: June 11, 2015, 09:33:22 AM »
At clubnight last night we heard about this years German Messerschmitt Rally. Seems as buoyant as ever, with the civil administration of the local and greater area hosting being very helpful and wanting to retain the prestige of holding the event, to the extent it will be at this venue in 2017 as part of year long celebrations of the anniversary year of the town. Such a positive environment must aid the organisers greatly, and the reward is a clear in the sustained attendance number greater, for this one marque of car, than we gain for the entire microcar sector for our biggest event of the year. A humbling experience, but one that really should demand some thought as to why. I have my theories, as is known, but it needs others to put their thinking caps on if this situation is to change.
The 160 odd Messerschmitts/Fend vehicles present had a busy menu of activities and receptions. The weather was hot creating some problems with hot cars, and hot people. All in all it sounded like a brilliant time. Yet as if to back up the low interest fron Britain only two KR drove over under thier own power and some 3 or 4 other owners, some with no car, put in an appearance. Gone are the days of a convoy of anything up to 20 cars driving over. Yet in that same period the Germans have doubled the numbers attending. How?
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Peel replica, Steve Fisk

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2015, 09:05:15 PM »
Getting a convoy together takes effort and even more effort to drive the cars long distance (I guess any way ) this might be to much for the owners now and the value of the cars goes up and up so bubble cars sit in garages covered up with extra thick blankets not to see the road , I'm after a heinkel to Actually get involved/or organise road trips , it only takes the excitement from one person to make others join in , just got to find one now before it goes on eBay to be snatched up by an investor who has many spare blankets but no interest other than money

Big Al

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2015, 07:43:24 AM »
This is all true.

But it is the same for the Germans who have bigger country to traverse to attend an event such as this. So I remain unsure those are the answers, unless applied to the character of the owners on masse. In other words it would mean the German owner of a Messerschmitt is more likely to drive his 'expensive' car than the same English owner. Is it as simple as that?

In fact Schmitts are arguably getting 'cheaper', as they no longer hold the dominant, double anything else, price tag that they used to have. The other marques have closed the gap. Yet the rarer Trienkel group are consistently outperforming the others for numbers. Mirror mirror on the wing, who is keenest in this thing, Trienkelnauts! Mind you the Isettas might put up a good show. The Ken Piper Messerschmitt special is promising too.

In my experience it takes a minimum of three keen folk in a particular area to really create a cell of enthusiasts. One guy on his own can make a difference. Three is pier pressure, expertise and enough to tempt out the less confidant into starting to use their cars. Once that hump of unreliability is got over, the confidence grows and the 3 can have a group of 20 followers. Suddenly a few 'phone calls can muster a group of cars, who together, will take on longer trips than perhaps most of those owners would ever do unstimulated. The final extension of this is an area club. But it remains a fact that you fall under three key players, things fall away back to inactivity, as most people are followers, for what ever reason. It is one argument against dispersed and uncoordinated activities. Something that this hobby has rather fallen into, but seems happy, even proud, of.   
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Barry

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2015, 07:44:12 AM »
There are investors who are also life long enthusiasts. Everybody is different.   How do you feel about Museums? Or traders who specialise in Micros? Not everything is clear cut.

Big Al

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2015, 09:12:38 AM »
I am not sure how that fits in with the fact the Germans get more cars out than we do, Barry. I cannot give you a synopsis of what motivates the owners in Germany. My feeling is the pattern of pure investors, trade and such will be little different. You might be correct in that there are more small investor/traders here. But some of that class are yet some of the keener attendees at events. Its a vexing question. The answer might be as simple as national characteristics, our overcrowded roads or other outside forces denting the Brits desire to make the trip.

One thing I do know is the Germans take a great pride in things that they make that work well. They celebrate engineering, and high qualification in that industry has great status. My father was a nothing in the UK. In Germany he would have had the status of a Barrister or a Doctor. Maybe its that recognition of ability, with the celebration of good product that takes owning a Schmitt out of being a grubby nutters activity, to something many people look up to. The restored car is a badge of skill and honour in the community at large. Here normally your treated as a bloody nuisance. Big stuff, as its why Germany has car manufacturers, while we do not.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Barry

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2015, 10:49:06 AM »
Sorry Al

My response was to Steve but you sneaked a reply in before I had posted.
I agree with what you are saying but times have changed.  The cars are no longer worthless enthusiasts amusements to be thrashed around the country as before.
You have kept all sorts of cars at your properties and made a few quid on them.  Are you an investor or an enthusiast.  I would say you are without doubt an enthusiast.
There is a grey area between the two and some are most definitely just investors as Steve said.  Little interest in the goods, just the return.

We just have to balance our enthusiasm for the cars with a bit of investment value and some sensible runs out for enjoyment.

My Messerschmitt stays in the garage for most of the time.  I go to the shops from time to time (nearest 4 miles) and will take one of my boys to their Prom soon.
I would not drive to Europe as I don't have the time and it would end in divorce.
I simply cannot afford the time, money and wear on my car caused by such a long trip in unknown weather conditions.  Not forgetting the dangers of the road  compared to the old days.   It is good to reminisce about those long trips in  practically worthless cars but, like so many other things in England, things have changed and cannot be reversed (a bit like an Isetta :))

Big Al

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2015, 05:43:23 PM »
I had not looked at this the other way round. That to take on a long drive could be considered slightly negligent to modern road users. An interesting notion, even if its possibly not what you meant. If that is true it would rather fit with my reasons to clear the decks somewhat and return to a collection of cars I am happy to drive under certain, if not all, conditions. So maybe be default, I recognize this idea.

For my collection, indeed I traded, that meant I speculated. So I am certainly one of those guys. I am off loading quite a bit of stuff and altering the very nature of the collection to bring things back to a state where I own stuff I can use. Things got very out of balance.

If it is true that the majority of these cars are not really usable then enter the collector, in whose territory the surplus cars fall. But if this is happening in Germany they are still keen to take the cars out on the road for a long run over a long weekend. It sounds as if the Ken Piper bash will bring a number of driven Schmitts to the UK.

Partners, well they have a lot to answer for. It is certainly easier to be an active nutcase, if you have always been an active nutcase. The later, post getting together, nutcase case is often untenable, and too hard to crack. Life has a marvellous way of getting in the way even if you are allowed to be a nutcase. I happily put my freedom to be a nutcase over anyone else's to stop me. Does not suit others who value partnership. I am afraid I never saw the need to compromise without a sensible reason not to do as I wish. So I am happily single. No great shade of grey to that, here.

It is, overall, better to have stuff running and in regular use, than not in use - if a machine is to be functional. If it is not possible to use it functionally, then it gets mothballed and becomes a collectors item. I think this is where I loose the plot on building a replica Peel, for instance. Its like saying 'I collect an image of a car that I cannot really use, to not use'. I am clearly missing something here. On the other hand collectors who manage to have the majority of the exhibits drivable impress me greatly. Its something like balancing a pyramid upside down, while its being built.

Perhaps an answer is to get out the camera, crank up a Microcar, and go and visit these, some extensive, private collections and make a serious of minority interest TV shows on them. In part travelogue, Nutter in daft car. In part informative, collector with knowledge. Would need to be a deal of visitor direction to secure information not to be spread, in each case. It could be done with some thought and the right people. Be a fun thing to do once I have things straight here.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Peel replica, Steve Fisk

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Re: Messerschmitts, Germany
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2015, 09:19:37 PM »
I love museums so perhaps I'm contradicting myself as a museum would probably start from an investor , enthusiast or someone who is both ,building an unusable car was just for fun but it will never be a trailer queen and will rack up some uncomfortable miles dodging pot holes for no reason more than I just want to