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Craftsmanship is mastery

ER Classics Desktop 2022

After a major investigation, AMT, the knowledge portal for the automotive professional, concluded that many leasing companies and self-employed drivers pay at official dealer companies for maintenance never performed.

Is craftsmanship mastery?

The list is too long to mention, but a perfectly correct maintenance booklet of a car with 90D km on the counter that still had its first oil filter based on the production date was only a mild example.

It is of course the fault of ...

And everything 'is of course mainly due to the leasing companies', which use rates that have been squeezed in such a way that the garage owner cannot earn any dry bread from it. Add to that the fact that the majority of the younger - cheap! - car mechanics have not learned much more than reading out malfunctions * and the story is sort of round.

The * with craftsmanship

Regarding the *: A friendly first engineer was approached by a trained engineer. He had already reset a fault four times, but he kept coming back. “Have you already looked under the hood? " So no. The diagnosis software did not have 'martyr talk' in its files.

Our own trusted addresses

As classic enthusiasts, we seek our technical salvation - insofar as we are not self-reliant - from specialists or universal garage companies. The specialists are ... well: specialists. And you don't usually find them much better. Among those 'universals' we often find the pleasant pricing plus a lot of knowledge and specialism.

Craftsmanship appears to be mastery

And because it is usually about small (er) companies you get to know the garage and the garage owner gets to know the relevant car. Unfortunately, one thing is certain: the growth of younger engineers who are not surprised when they talk about 'setting contact points' and 'leaving brake shoes on properly' is minimal.

Little enthusiasm for craftsmanship

A number of enthusiastic garage owners that we know have tried to transfer knowledge in the context of learning and work processes. They all stopped. The student offer they received? “There is nothing to do with that. They can't do anything. They don't want anything. They hide in the toilet with their smart phones. " It looks like the 'Nederland Kennisland' approach is a missed boat. And that the last own remains of craftsmanship are also disappearing here.

Good news from the 'bottom' of the market

But there is movement at the bottom of the market. A growing number of Polish and Turkish entrepreneurs who work from sometimes unsightly locations know how to make a living with limited resources, but with 'old' skills.

With a background of 'repairing' instead of 'replacing', they have already received quite a few classic fans as customers. So let's cherish what we have and hope for what comes.

Oh yes: The yoghurt pot with the tubes? There is nothing digital about that. It is used to transfer brake fluid from the 'brake oil container' of a classic motorcycle

This is incomprehensible for modern engineers
Hardly susceptible to martyr


Leave a Reply
  1. Dear Dolphin.

    A nice article, but the piece about the new growth, I do not fully understand. After working in the hospitality industry for a number of years, and having made a switch to technology, it is best to tinker and work on both new and classic cars, but there must be companies wherever possible and that give a chance

  2. The Mercedes dealer in Breda took three hours to make the following diagnosis after the on-board computer of my 220 GLA CDi 4matic announced in red letters that it was no longer allowed to go forwards or backwards, and therefore also refused to go forwards or backwards. switch: 'key probably broken'. Solution: 'use spare key, on-board computer reset, advice: handle original key with care'. This dealer charges 124 euros per hour, and the free answer to the question what a new key costs: 'about 500 euros'. Nothing was resolved in those three hours, but I actually got one hour of compensation, so that I only had to pay 250 euros to identify a problem that was not resolved. I think it's a rather expensive wet finger.

  3. My heart, Dolf! I once ended up at the secondary agricultural school in Emmeloord as a highly technically interested farmer's son. At that time, the NOP was the “farmer's Mecca” and that also applied to the school. We were delivered as farmers who could manage well under the hood. There were technology teachers walking around there who were so enthusiastic and conveyed that to us, just wonderful. The topper was Knuivers, from the Achterhoek (as far as I know) together with 4 other types. We worked (mid-70s) on diesels (valve sets, set pumps on time) and then he had to want to run! Idem petrol and petrol / petroleum engines, hydraulics and gearboxes / swingarms. You learned to “read” engines and, for example, estimate diesels for smell and smoke colors. My hobby later turned into reaturing old tractors, but… I was once visited by a girl next door 'free-range', he was a diesel engine and I was an amateur. He had a “patient” without a computer plug, who sometimes just stopped. One could not have because the tractor was hidden under a parade car. Colors, smoke and what you can “read” from it… I might as well have spoken to him in Sanskrit!
    We have come out of it but I see your story in no time, compliments for the visual story!

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