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robin craig

Canadian Army Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908

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I thought I would share a tale of joy or dead luck, whichever you choose let us just say I am happy.

 

Last year in a fit of enthusiasm but also in a sea of not knowing I bought what I had thought was an ex army motorcycle.

 

Sadly daylight and a call to a dealer friend revealed that I had bought a wanna be bike and not the original item.

 

I have hankered after a dual sport motorbike and one with a Canadian Military connection was my ideal choice, the 250 cc is a size and weight that I like.

 

There were 58 bikes which were 1992 models with a 95 CFR year and 17 bikes which were 1999 models with a 20 CFR year.

 

So a couple of thinks need to be explained. The bikes were sold to Hayes Diesel Technology and they were the ones to spec them out and do the militarisation. The CFR is the Canadian Forces Registration, of which the last 5 digits show up on the licence plate of the vehicle, but the first two digits are the year of purchase.

 

So, these bikes were released from service in 2003 when some bright spark decided motorbikes were not part of the modern army.

 

These bikes were snapped up and there are few of the 75 original bikes ever seen around. There are a few in museums and are often lacking the side panniers.

 

By pure fluke I was searching a popular classified site one night just over a week ago I stumbled upon a bike for sale. Within 3 hours I had spoken to the owner and we had struck a deal to purchase.

 

I am now the proud owner of a genuine ex Canadian Army machine and look forward to riding it this summer to shows around Ontario and displaying what is a great piece of kit.

 

The next challenge will be to bring it back from Edmonton, Alberta to Kingston, Ontario. that I am hoping will happen in a month or so just as the snow melts.

 

Here are some photos from the seller.

 

Cant wait to get it home.

klr 09.jpg

klr 06.jpg

klr 07.jpg

klr 08.jpg

klr 04.jpg

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The most amazing part about this bike is that the former owner bought it from the government disposal agency and has had it since 2003 and has never repainted the machine. The markings are all original including the call sign 91S

klr 05.jpg

klr 02.jpg

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Lovely looking bike I would love one of those especially in that condition very well done.

Slightly jealous Simon😀

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Simon,

 

thanks for the comments, I see you have a few bikes yourself.

 

Where are you located in the world? There is nothing in your profile in the top right like mine has.

 

I see some ex USAF stuff, are parts easy to get for you? Need any help with those?

 

Yes, I am very lucky to get this bike. It fits the bill for me as there are a few older Triumphs and Harleys on the circuit from time to time but they are not very practical bikes. I wanted a boke as I live on an island and farm and have acres of fields around which to bimble as we leave a maintenance margin, plus the island has nice roads.

 

I have trailered armour around to shows and it is a slug fest. Now with the bike I can ride to local shows and easily load it into our truck or put it on or in a small trailer and go a longer distance. It is also small to store. I am building a workshop and will be rebuilding some Ferrets so this will be a nice escape in between.

 

Having something Canadian makes a difference for the connection with the public and the old time soldiers at shows.

 

I learned on and rode Can-ams in the army in the UK and have loved this size of bike and have owned a Yamaha XT in civvy street.

 

So to be able to combine the size, uniqueness, ease of storage, ease of maintenance and connection is brilliant. Yes, I am very happy.

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I am sure it is a stock Army bike......just curious as to the obvious resemblance to the MT. Probably just superficial resemblance as the Kawa looks a lot more capable than the MT 350 which is a bit of a plodder, although a very easy and comfy bike to use. I have an interesting book "The Winged Wheel Patch" published in 1993 (Burns & Messenger) ....a History of the Canadian Military Motorcycle and Rider that covers machines up to the introduction of the MT350 replacing the Armstrong. Interesting book and nice photos with reminiscences from former Canadian DRs.

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