Author Topic: Isetta Club tales  (Read 4639 times)

Big Al

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Isetta Club tales
« on: March 17, 2012, 07:35:10 am »
I have had two people contact me this week struggling to restore their Isettas hoping I had parts. I was quite concerned that they both told of a Club unable to offer very much in the way of a service. As one chap put it he joined for information, parts and rallies and they have no rallies, little information and hardly any parts so he feels he has done his money. Not a good situation especially for what should be the biggest single marque microcar club in the UK.

Clearly something has gone horribly wrong. I had assumed the situation with the Hearns was resolved, though it sounds a mighty poor do, and that a reformed Club was now attempting to move on.

As Mike O'Balance said prior to my agreeing to leave the HTC Ltd committee, it is far easier to reform or restart a club with a new committee and loose all the old faces and frissions of years gone by. You get new accounting etc etc. Of course the HTC Ltd were lucky in that the insurance paid out on the loss of spares to flooding at a time when there was a group of new bods wanting to take over. It has been a success as in the main they invested the money well. If the timing is wrong and finances tight I can quite see that the Isetta Club might be in a tough position at the moment. However all the more reason to try and get the new guys into the fold and unify the skills.

What seems to be happening is a lot of parts are being made privately and then sold in small batches rather than a central entity organising availability to a wider market. One caller told of the Club spares contact not really knowing what parts were available, what they did or how the car worked. Helga Bonner ran Partsmart for years without intimate knowledge of the Messerschmitt by using the parts numbers. Yet that was perhaps the most efficient spares service around so its not really an excuse.

Perhaps someone has up to date info on what is happening in the Isetta world. In pure numbers that club can bolster any event with a lot of cars so for eventing it is kind of important that the IOC prospers. So it effects more than just Isetta owners.

Then again I might get accused of selling all the Isettas abroad (after all they are crap cars?) leaving not enough to strut there stuff.
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

Bob Purton

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Re: Isetta Club tales
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2012, 09:15:34 am »
I don't know too much about the IOCGB as I do not belong to it. Like your callers Al, I fear that I would be doing my money. For a first time joiner its the best part of thirty quid, if one knew that a half decent parts service was in place it would be worth it just for that but as rumours persist that there isn't and that all the parts I have ever wanted can be sourced from Germany on line or from Dave Tadman there is little incentive to join. I use the Isetta world forum though which was set up by Terry Parkin who is both knowledgeable and helpful. Interestingly the forum although being UK based is dominated by Americans as is the MOC one so I'm told, all this convinces me that the real microcar scene these days is over there! A sad situation when the most unlikeliest of nations, one of gas guzzling consumerism  [and burgers too!] are more enthusiastic about microcars than the uk where we actually used them for every day transport rather than as toys. Ok many do not drive there cars as we do but you cannot knock the enthusiasm.  As far as selling "crap cars " is concerned, are not all project cars "crap cars"? Reputations only start to get tarnished when cars are described inaccurately, a person buys one unseen and it then turns up in a state far worse than was expected. Its a difficult one as peoples standards are different, for instance Als idea of a MINT car is not quite the same as mine but then I get accused of over restoring!. In Als defense I think he did the microcar world a good service over the years supplying projects and parts to many of us, I personally wouldn't buy a car without seeing it in the metal from anyone including Al!!