RDW: Rules are rules


After his retirement, a loyal AMK reader had the time to make his dream come true: He was going to restore a 2CV. That process began a few years ago, when old ducks changed hands for little. And it ended at the RDW for the time being.

A retirement project

The car that our reader found was a poor AZU with work, but without an engine. The old working duck had a carte grise as proof of good behavior. The newly-fledged duck fixer went to work. Teached himself to weld and spray. Had serious confrontations with the wiring, because he hadn't learned for that either.

At a trade fair he got to talk to someone who knew where to find an excellent engine block. That engine block was bought. And paid contact.

Eventually there was a neatly refurbished order

He was far from showroom condition and perfection, but that was never the intention. The 2CV was technically excellent and externally veteder. An appointment was made with the RDW. Where the case went wrong with the fact that no proof of origin of the engine could be submitted. For example, if you buy a revised block from Burton (€ 1.699,00), you will receive a receipt. "no problemo!"

Argdocht and backwards

The engine that our reader had adopted via via had cost him a not unreasonable € 400. Without a receipt. And an engine block without a receipt? that could just come from theft. The RDW has become quite paranoid about it when more Harleys were stolen than sold. We remember those days. The stock market offer of blocks, gearboxes, exhausts and carburetors was overwhelming at the time.

People bought Harleys to insure them all risks, to report them as stolen and to demolish them. Count your winnings. That was about theft, crime and a lot (insurance money). But to project the same suspicion and suspicion on a free-range project by a happy pensionado?

Our reader was very surprised

After all, he had just bought the engine at a reasonable price. "And if I had just brought a self-written receipt?" "Or you could have shown a receipt. Just a transfer with mention in the name of an acquaintance or something. Then there would have been no problem ". “If I still do that. Is the problem solved then ". Then the discussion became surreal. Because that had not happened. And could not be more.

Rules are rules. Yet?

A Burton builder had a similar problem. His donor duck apparently once had an overhaul block. When he proudly went to the RDW, he was banned. The Burton did not comply with the 1 / 3e 1 / 3e 1 / 3e rule. A Duck with associated chassis and engine numbers is allowed with a new body on license plate. Because of the other engine, this Burton 2 / 3e was no longer original. And so the car could not be on license plate.

The fact that the block did not belong in the car was noticed by the judge only because the nameplate was poked 'wrong' on it. So he had paid attention and knew about the hat and the brim. Inquire with the outdated supplier of the block: “We do that for ourselves. To make it clear that we have overhauled the block. We can see that by a few more marks. But we keep it a secret.


Apparently there are people at the RDW who do their work without thinking. The culprit 'prescriptions are prescriptions' has had the most terrible consequences over the years. So it's not too bad at the RDW. And: There are also realistic judges. But if you hit the wrong one, your beloved classic can easily turn into a planter. Unfortunately.



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  1. It is a pity that such a project has to fail like this, maybe put it on a license plate with our eastern or southern neighbors, because they are not too difficult about futilities. After that, simply transferring to a Dutch license plate should be possible.

    • Then you can be quite wrong, in the Netherlands it is much easier than in Belgium or Germany. Here you can mount another motorcycle or other parts that are not original, In Belgium or Germany you can forget that. By the way, in Belgium all vintage cars that have been sawn, other superstructures on a chassis that do not belong on it, lowered or kicked have a problem then it is no longer a vintage car and whether the license plate is taken or they have to make the vintage car original again

  2. I think this is a tragic and terrifying story.
    In civil law it says: possession counts as a complete title. This means that if you have movable property in your actual power (owner) you will be considered as the owner unless it is PROOF that you acquired that property in bad faith. That is therefore not the case at all. The government reverses the burden of proof and thereby violates the law.
    Another case (I know more) that the government is guilty of unlawful conduct. That is frightening.

  3. That civil servant was just God at that moment, without his approval the duck did not hit the road. That gives a powerful feeling, and his bastards could do it again. Kudos to all benevolent and common-sense officials, by the way.

  4. My experience with the judges of the RDW Zwolle is that they are very correct there and certainly try to think along with the provider. With the then in-house Customs, the experience was considerably less!

  5. It is a shame that this story scares people away from going to the RDW, while the people there are very friendly.
    As a provider, YOU should have the stuff done in terms of paper shop and evidence, but most think the RDW does that for you.
    If YOU can prove that what is in front of them is just right, there is nothing wrong.
    So again: do your homework .. take care of receipts and take books / brochures or factory documents with you.

    I have often had vehicles inspected for a license plate, historical research and / or impact VIN and have never had any trouble.
    Of course, once a doubting official, but always able to convince with evidence provided.

    • I too can relate to the perception of the inspecting officials. 'Interpreting at one's own discretion' whether a vehicle complies with the law leads to situations in which a provider says: yes, but the so-and-so's vehicle also had the same conversion, okay a bit different but not much different, and that is approved, why not mine? There you are as a civil servant.

    • Doing your homework is a must. And rules and regulations are needed. But seeing and tolerating generously are Dutch pride. it can also be very enjoyable at the RDW. But you can also still encounter very stupid people there.

    • I don't agree with that, my salvage vehicle from America has been back many times because one judge thinks my fixed spoon was too far out and the other judge found that no problem
      Flashing lights and roof lighting had to be removed according to a judge, the other said if you can switch it off separately it is also good
      Then a young judge who thought that my tow truck was not complete?
      Had so much acc on that my vehicle was too heavy for my BE driving license so I had several acces “temporarily” removed so that it became lighter.
      Were photos taken because he said, you will put it up again later.
      Nice and important, nobody checks that.
      I had temporarily removed a bumper on my tow truck and replaced it with a wooden beam, it looked strange, but one laughed at it and thought it was best, the other thought it was nothing and I had to adjust my bumper again.
      In any case, after returning a few times, I finally have a license plate on it
      But this was after a complaint from me to the manager of the rdw because I thought that they had treated me indecently
      After quoting examples because the manager had taken the trouble to come to the workshop with me, the manager acknowledged that a number of inspectors had to treat customers in a more decent manner, this has indeed been improved

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