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24th Drirad Treffin

by

David Tocher

After the successful Scottish Rally last year the decision to hold the 24th Dreirad Treffen in the Netherlands seemed to be an trip that couldn't be missed. As soon as the hotel had been chosen I booked my place. After an indifferent summer in Ireland not helped by knacking in my back. I had to replace the rubbing strip round the outside of my boat and the wriggling in and out of tight places popped something out in my spine. I had sciatic pains which went as far as my left foot which I have never had before. This meant I didn't use the Pembleton for most of the summer as it was too 'uncomfortable' to drive or do much at all ('uncomfortable' is the medical term for painful!). Luckly time is a geat healer and I had recovered enough to drive the car back to Leeds and prepare for the event.

A few days before my return the permanent magnet rotor on the alternator came off. The bolt and taper on the rotor were damaged so I rigged a car battery in parallel with the smallish existing battery to make sure I'd do the 300 miles with no charging alternator. Gutzibits had a second hand rotor so once back in Leeds drove over to Slaithwaite to collect it. The M8 thread in the crankshaft needed cleaning up with a tap but otherwise everything was fixed - this was on the Monday before the day I was leaving. A severe wheel wobble had also developed between 30 and 40mph so I got the wheel rebalanced on the Wednesday morning of the start of the trip - last minute stuff but better late than never!

Duncan offered to organise a block booking on the Hull to Rotterdam P&O ferry for the Wedesday night crossing with an extra night in a hotel in Scheveningen a seaside resort on the outskirts of Den Haag. The weather forcast looked vey promising for the time we were to be away.

The various members of our group agreed to meet up on the road from York to Hull so that we could arrive at the port together - Duncan having the group tickets. The Parrs left something behind at their B&B so Duncan, Rob & Angie, Don & Ann and I waiting in a pub car park until they caught up with us. We had a difficult drive through Hull in the evening rush hour as its quite difficult trying to keep together as a group.

ferry across the rhine

We got on the ferry and after a beer (or two) had our dinner in the buffet restaurant which is the place to eat if you are greedy! The next morning we set off on what looked like a promising day. Duncan guided us to a ferry which saved miles of motorway driving. After crossing over on the ferry as I still had problems with wheel wobble I checked the tyre pressures. They were not the same on the front so I dropped them to 20psi (in old money) but as it transpired it madethings much worse!

Winter palace containing Escher exhibition

We arrived at the hotel which has car parking space, checked in and then decided what to do. Some decided to visit the Loewman Motor Museum in Den Haag which some of us had been to when we went to Bad Malete two yeaars earlier. I found a leaflet about Escher en Het Paleis. I've loved Escher's work (he's an increadible graphic artist). Duncan was dying to hire a bike but also wanted to see Escher. Rob and Angie also hired bikes and they set off for Den Haag. I took the tram and we met up inside the museum/exhibition in Den Haag. We were not disappointed.

pier on the promenade
sculpture
sculpture
sculpture

After we had our fill of the exhibition and lunch the others cycled off to back to Scheveningen. I took the tram to the terminus and walked back along the promenade back to the hotel. The prom was full of bikes and there was pleanty of facilities for both riding and parking them. There is a modern sculpture exhibition on the seafront with a few 'tasters' on public display. We ate in a beach restaurant all having had a great day.

The next morning before we started I pumped the front tyres to 30psi and the wobble problem vanished! It must be the Camacs combined with low pressure that caused the wobble. At least that problem was resolved. We set off using motorways to get round Amsterdam otherwise it would have more than doubled our journey time. The weather was really good - after my 'summer' in Ireland I needed a bit of warmth and sunshine.

Anthony Gormley sculpture called Exposure

I asked Duncan about deviating from our route to see an Anthony Gormley sculpture called Exposure on the shores of the Markermeer, near the city of Lelystat. It turned out not to be much of a diversion as we were going to see Paul Straatman. Paul is building a Guzzi Pembleton - see accounts of his build problems in this issue of the newsletter. We stopped and viewed the work. I have to say I felt a bit let down because there wasn't a good viewing point from the land but I'd guess it would work better from the water. I think his Angel of the North is far better. We took the usual group Pembleton picture whilst parked beside it.

Outside Paul's house

On to Paul's place for tea/coffee and lovely cakes (click for Anka's recipe) made by Anke, his wife, but as well as the social aspect of the visit we were there to comment on the pre MSVA work that Paul had done after his trip to UK with his car - see his article in this newsletter. He has sorted most of the problems with a few minor jobs left to done.

The final leg of the trip was to the hotel, the base for the meeting, which was about an hour away. Paul lead us on a series of minor roads through very flat agricultural land where one could see to the distant horizon a bit like looking out to sea. After checking we has a few beers, had our evening meal and chatted to the others. There was a briefing about the schedule for the weekend. There were 42 cars which were split into two groups (red and green) using the same format for managing the group as used in Scotland. Paul was looking for a ride on Saturday and he would come with me.

We registered with René and the hotel. The following drivers took part. As you can see the Pembletons made up a large part of the group.

Andy ClayTriking
Axel ScheutenTriking
Bert  BeattieLomax
Ian RosBarlow
Bill DaviesCrozier 3
Bob OnleyPembleton 
Colin FergusonPembleton
David ParrPembleton
David TocherPembleton 
Derek MartinGrinall
Dieter ReuschDamaged
Don EdenPembleton
Duncan GrimmondPembleton 
Henk BuiterJZR
Horst TatgeTriking
Juergen WiegleTriking
Karl AsterTriking
Klaus MeyJZR
Michael BulleyPembleton
Patrick de HaanJZR
Paul  WilliamsTriking
Rene HekkemaJZR Pan
Richard WilliamsBlackjack Avion
Rob JenkinsPembleton
Sam McintyrePembleton
Thorsten  MeyJZR
Tom RaePembleton 
Torsten  SchmidtJZR
Uwe JacobsTriking
David StevensonTriking
Mike RandelTriking Sport
Nigel PittPembleton
David QuarrieTriking
Jan BuiterLomax 224
Dieter LawitskyAudi
Bodo ThrunJZR
Bernd WolfJZR
De Boer RichardJZR
Ken Edwardslomax
Uwe belteJZR
Dominic EarlyDRK
Hegeler ErnstJZR
Hohlstein MartinJZR
Carl SchmidtJZR PAN

Indian motorcycle
Indian motorcycle

The first days run through the countryside was in glorious sunshine along very open winding road on the dykes which made for good driving. Our morning coffee stop was at the only Indian Motorcycle museum in Kadijk (maybe that's 'only' in the Netherlands?) There were lots of memorabilia and some bikes some in very unrestored condition. There were a number of speedway bikes as well as the V twins. Ever onwards towards lunch in a garden centre but it was enormous compared to the usual ones in UK. I get dragged round them by SWMBO so I'm almost an expert on them!

canalside house
description

The afternoon run was similar to the morning except the coffee break was on a canal boat. We did a tour of Giethoorn whilst drinking our coffee. The boat went out onto a small lake which was mobbed with boats as it was a glorious afternoon. WE stopped at a boat equipped with chest freezers selling ice creams who were doing great business. We returned by a different exit from the lake the canal was jam packed with boats. It would have been possible to walk along the canal stepping from one boat to another.

Mike in trouble

When we (green group) had got back to the hotel we found Mike Bulley with a crowd round his car offering advice on why it was running on one cylinder. The problem was finally resolved but it took Mike out of the run the next day while he fixed the broken throttle cable.

Waiting for the tail enders

Sunday started with grey skies and then it turned to rain - I could be back in Ireland - just as we set off. The route took us through more wooded area. At one point the guide system failed when one car went off route followed by both the last car and the rescue vehicle who got lost! The rest of our group waited patiently for them to rejoin us. I don't know how we have managed without mobile phones.

very basis living
No description

We stopped to look at a very basic type of dwelling and people were living in this type of house until WW2. It reminded me of pictures I had seen of peasant cottages in Ireland in victorian times. The weather gradually improved and at our lunch stop the cars were parked on the village in Dwingeloo. Our presence certainly was of interest to the locals. The run after lunch was similar to the morning and we finally arrived back at the hotel.

I wanted to get a picture of the nine Pembletons all together as is traditional at these sort of event but because we were split into groups and some drivers were staying elsewhere this didn't happen. The day finished with a more formal dinner rather than the buffet style meals we had had before, , short speeches, thanks etc and announcing the venue for the next years (25th) meeting to be held in Suhl, Thuringen in the former East Germany.

the departure

Monday dawned with a very autumnal feel. We loaded our cars and got ready for the return to Rotterdam. Good byes were said and we were off. Our leader/guide Duncan set off with us following. We planned to cross the dyke at Lelystat. The weather was now getting very warm - I could drive in a T shirt. We had a coffee break on a small island part way across the Markermeer.

A Pembleton donor?
Delft canal

Our lunch stop was in Hoorn, a blast round Amsterdam on motorways and a mid afternoon break in Delft. It is a pretty touristy place but with parking problems. We found a pay carpark but the instructions were in Dutch and it wouldn't accept our credit/debit cards. We were rescued by a local who paid for all of us on his card and we paid him cash. It wasn't very visitor friendly to say the least. I found a potential donor in the car park.

The final run back to Rotterdam used the same ferry as we used on our outward journey and we arrive a bit later than planned but they hadn't started loading the ship. We chose to eat in the restaurant with waiter service. It was so warm we could sit out having a drink on the open deck in the moonlight at midnight. A very pleasant way to end our trip.

The next day we had a delay in getting off the boat. Having only three people checking passports with hundreds of passengers is bound to cause this but it does save them money employing staff. We finally joined the morning rush hour in UK. I went onto Leeds on my own as the others were either driving directly towards Birmingham or towards York.

Despite the delays at Hull as our final event of the trip we all thought it had been a great trip blessed with wonderful weather. Roll on next year!

David


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