Re: [MV] MVPA New directory

Fri, 15 Oct 1999 23:48:31 -0700

-----Original Message-----
From: Claude W. Vaughn <>
...Date: Saturday, October 02, 1999 7:48 AM
Subject: Re: [MV] MVPA New directory

....>Paul, and listers, this new MVPA directory will only have the
>requested by the questionnaire. This new directory will have the names and
>addresses of vehicle enthusiast. There will not be any vehicle listings,
>only that the individual is interested in a general category or class of
>vehicle. Rather useless if you want to contact the owners of Staghounds
>and have to mail letters to 300 or so "Armor, wheeled" vehicle owners.
>Same goes for that GP owner or Slat Grill owner. Mail a thousand
>letters... I don't think so!
>As for me, I will keep the old D-5 directory. And for those purchasing
>this new directory, ya'll can write me. I only updated my address. And
>requested deletion of my phone numbers.
>> Preferably I liked the Veh listing!
>> Paul Vandervort
>> MVPA 437

I agree for the most part though I provided my info to the nice phone
surveyor from the publisher (we Canadians got a chuckle out of his southern
accent - of course he probably got a chuckle out of our Canadian accents and
different pronunciations!!) - My data is in Supply Line anyway as I am
Editor (serving a life sentence) for Western Command Chapter in BC, Canada.

On Oct 13, Western Command Chapter members in British Columbia very
regretfully decided to NOT buy the new D-6 Yr 2000 "Millenium" directories
and I have so advised the MVPA-HQ this evening. We had three major problems:
1. Lack of detailed vehicle listing as has been the practice in our
directories since the mid-1970s. I joined MVCC/IMVCC/MVPA in 1977 - member
954 - I would have joined in 1976 but had no money! Still have no money, but
have stayed a member since then.
2. Confusing new format - areas or interestaand/or veh type (5 only). When
telephone call came I was totally confused and taken aback that they did NOT
want my vehicle data!
3. Cost. It works out to about $100 in REAL currency (i.e. my dollars) for
ONE copy - for something that is simply a phonebook member list and lacks
the half of the content of D-5.

Our decision was not political in any way, but was based on the three points
listed above.

The 1992 MVPA directory "D-5" was good, though it could easily have been
much better. It had many needless and sloppy errors that a simple
proof-reading and good database validation tables could have resolved or
avoided These errors though created in haste in 1992 are still with us and
it looks like many people will face them for years to come. e.g. have
"Bantam" in a "validation table" so that "Bantan" (with an "N" at the end)
would not be accepted as happened in D-5. One could also avoid other
problems such as Willys Overland M38CDN (they were Fords), Willys Overland
M151 (duh!), 1943 White M151A1 (actually an M15A1 half-track I believe),
Universal Carriers put under Armor wheeled (they have tracks!); Willy
Overland (missing the "S"); a 1969 VW181 (WWII veh); GMC DUKW-=353 and a GMC
DUKW-353 (two separate groupings because of extra "=" symbol for same type
of vehicle); Ford Motor Co MB (duh! Willys Overland please! Yes it was under
1/4 Ton trucks, and was thus not an M8 Greyhound armoured car - or was it?).

A good database program, database manager and some proof-readers (i.e. "peer
review" ) who are knowledgeable in their areas could make it SO-O-O-O easy
for MVPA to generate a vehicle/member list etc. whenever it was wanted.
Could even be sold on CD Rom to cut printing/production costs. On a CD-ROm
maybe it could be searchable for all member owned 1941 Willys Overland MB
jeeps with serial numbers between MB103000 and MB104500 or all 1944 Ford
GPWs or all BSA airborne bicycles. Wouldn't that be nice?

Yes there is the data entry cost (labour mainly) BUT you only have to enter
data ONCE into a database. Do proofread it however! Databases can be made to
sort, cull out inactive members (simply include a field to show if they are
current), check spelling of names, ensure consistency e.g. M38CDN not M38
CDN or vice versa. To the human eye they are the same vehicle but to the
computer they are totally different machines because of the space. Address
changes, vehicle changes, additions like e-mail addresses could be submitted
either ongoing (e.g. via e-mail or even on an inter-active form on the MVPA
web page) or in a big campaign push. Then when it is time to print, you
simply run the reports and have them printed and bound. Maybe not quite as
simple as I made it sound, but the tools exist and I am sure there are
members of MVPA (or people who could be hired on contract) with extensive
relational database experience.

I am a museum curator and have over 40,000 records in a database at work. On
my own database at home I have several thousand jeeps and Canadian military
vehicles listed. Some museums have millions of records. It CAN be done.

So, in summary, I am very sad that MVPA chose to eliminate the 50% of the
D-5 type content (i.e. vehicle listings in detail) that I use so often in my
research. I had hoped that there would be MORE emphasis on serial numbers,
dates of manufacture, original USA or WD or DND numbers, body tub numbers on
Willys MB jeeps etc. especially since Supply Line has gone in that direction
for ads. It is strange that the directory is going in the opposite
direction. Maybe D-7 will have the vehicle detail listings reinstated and
expanded? I sincerely hope so.

I don't really fault our club leaders. They no doubt made the choices
(always a difficult task) with the best of intentions e.g. cost
effectiveness - after all, they are members and collectors too. I just don't
happen to agree with this decision.

Colin Macgregor Stevens
MVPA Member 954 (since 1977)
& member B Coy 1 Canadian Parachute Battalion (Living History)
Pitt Meadows, British Columbia, Canada
Personal web site:
1944 Willys MB
1942 BSA airborne bicycles (2)

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