2006 Internationale Stationaire Motoren Show at Nuenen, The Netherlands

Two men, nearly a world apart, find commonality in engines

| December 2006

Sometime in the late 1990s I became good friends with an engine collector in Sint Annaparochie in northern Holland. We met through the Internet, and in 2000 Harry Terpstra came to visit me. During his visit we attended shows in Oregon, Washington and California, and visited many collectors in those states as well as Idaho and Montana. We also visited British Columbia and Nevada. This first tour became known as the "Hell On Wheels" tour by our friends on the Internet since we did all this in a 10-day period, and we tried to visit a couple collectors each day or attend a show. An average day started early, involved driving hundreds of miles and ended with a late dinner before going to bed.

The following year Harry came back for more. This time we pulled a trailer load of engines all the way to Portland, Ind., for the show. We visited collectors again in every state we drove through and tried to visit at least two collectors each day on our way to Indiana. On our return trip we also attended shows in Iowa and Minnesota.

During our travels and exchanges of e-mails, I developed an interest in European shows and in 2002 I traveled to Europe. Harry and I traveled through eight countries and visited about 20 collections in less than 10 days, plus ended the trip with three days at the Historische Motoren en Traktoren Vereniging (HMT), or in English, the Historical Stationary Engine and Tractor Club Show at Panningen in the Netherlands.

The HMT show is the best overall show I've attended. It has engines, tractors, a tractor parade, tractor pulls, model engines, vendors, music, steam, etc. In other words, it has everything any of the big American shows have. The nice thing about European gas engine shows is that you can still see American tractors and engines, plus you see engines and tractors from all over the world.

This year I returned to Holland to attend the 2006 Internationale Stationaire Motoren Show at Nuenen, The Netherlands - a premier showcase of European gas engines. I've heard about the Nuenen show for many years and have wanted to attend it since attending the HMT show and being so impressed.

The Nuenen show is a special in that it is an engine-only show. No tractors. It is also the show where the engine collectors from all over Europe come and bring their good stuff.