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  #1  
Old 18-01-21, 04:01
Robin Craig's Avatar
Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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Default Armstrong MT500 CFR 86-78530

Well, where to start?

I have had a quiet year in 2020 on the MV front busying myself with building our garage and it has paid off. I have an enclosed structure with doors.

Anyway I digress.

Last week i was sent a link by a good friend Jason Ginn and I was alerted to what appeared to be an ex CF Armstrong on Facebook. It was less than twenty kilometers from where I live.

Considering these were disposed of long ago, specifically April 1996 for this one, it is hard to find them these days, especially when you consider there were only 86 of them.

That day I was in communication with the seller and was at his place that evening.

The tale, as told, was that it was bought from Barry Brown in the Westport area and ridden enthusiastically until other distractions took over. The bike then sat and seized and then was torn apart for repair. It was spread over 12 feet in a shed on shelves and against a wall where I saw it. Neglected and so unloved.

That evening I put a deposit down and took the front wheel on the forks with the handlebars and VIN tag as my part so far. Denying him from selling it out from under me to someone else, hopefully.

On Friday I went armed with milk crates and totes I went back to collect the rest.

Mostly it is there. There is a lot of detailed work to do and a lot of parts to buy and maybe even make. A bike is more than I feel comfortable building and I have made arrangements to have it done by a friend, he has the time and skill and he has owned one before and knows them.

It will be transported at some time in the future. Meanwhile it sits safe and dry under lock and key.

I am thankful to Ed Storey for already providing historical information. Confirming the CFR to VIN relationship and that it served with 2 Svc Bn in Petawawa and the disposal date.

Brain Asbury has already supplied some front fork bellows.

Rob Love has assisted with the offer of some paperwork to support the bike.

I am in a fortunate position that, unlike most during Covid, I have been working two jobs and have a small reserve which is being used for this project.

I can not thank all those involved enough for their contribution so far.

I hope for a running rideable bike by late June, possibly.

If anyone has parts for these bikes I am all ears and have coin ready. The tubular panniers are high on the list as are the fabric bags that go inside. I am going to search high and low for as much as I can but I am prepared to have items made if I have to.

I am thrilled to add this vehicle to the ranks.

My partner has given it a name already. When shown it all on a pallet and in boxes she said "Jack" was appropriate. It is sticking so far.

Things can only get better if a Can Am pops up........

Pictures for you to enjoy
Attached Thumbnails
MT500 001.jpg   MT500 002.jpeg   MT500 003.jpeg   MT500 004.jpeg  
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  #2  
Old 18-01-21, 19:01
James P James P is offline
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Very nice Robin. Here is your one opportunity to lay out all the parts like a 1/1 scale Tamiya model kit and get a over head picture.
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  #3  
Old 18-01-21, 19:18
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Alex Sandor Csank Alex Sandor Csank is offline
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Great stuff! Congratulations!
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  #4  
Old 19-01-21, 14:26
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Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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Thank you for the kind and humorous words from you both.

I was blessed when I made the acquaintance of Steve Johnson from out west in a metaphorical way yesterday, he also owns an Armstrong formerly owned by Dan Jahn.

I am happy there are people who know lots and willing to share.

A Canadian specific parts manual is on its way to me already, that is a key item to have.
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Home of the Maple Leaf Adapter
2 Canadian Mk1 Ferrets
M4 Treadway bridge training sets
Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908 ex PPCLI
Canadair CL70 CFR 58-91588
Bombardier Skandic WT 97-26076 LOSV
Armstrong MT500 serial CFR 86-78530
Land Rover S3 Commanders Caravan Carawagon 16 GN 07
Trailer Cargo 3/4 T 2WHD 38 GJ 62
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  #5  
Old 20-01-21, 22:46
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Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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In discussion with Ed Storey I am trying to grind down as to whom within 2 Svc Bn this bike might have been used by.

I have watched this video which kind of spread the possibilities far and wide as there is both MP and Signals components contained within.

Is it fair to say that this bike could have been used by more than one user over a period of service ie MP or signals etc?

Just looking to understand the set up

Video is interesting just for amusement, especially if you are killing time awaiting a Covid result. Helps to take the mind off things

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDQu...hHLVdjnxACTx3T
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Robin Craig

Home of the Maple Leaf Adapter
2 Canadian Mk1 Ferrets
M4 Treadway bridge training sets
Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908 ex PPCLI
Canadair CL70 CFR 58-91588
Bombardier Skandic WT 97-26076 LOSV
Armstrong MT500 serial CFR 86-78530
Land Rover S3 Commanders Caravan Carawagon 16 GN 07
Trailer Cargo 3/4 T 2WHD 38 GJ 62
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  #6  
Old 21-01-21, 14:31
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Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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So to somewhat answer my own question, I want to clarify my previous post.

I am delighted to even have a serial number to CFR confirmation, that is so much more than many people have for their vehicles. I feel truly blessed.

As far as 2 Svc Bn goes, one wonders when the bike is whole again, how should it be marked to be true to its history, or what we know of its history.

I guess the plain green overall and the CFR on a plate at the rear should be all I should or can reasonably do, anything further ie Sigs or MP etc or Engineers is just conjecture really and it takes away from being true to ones self.

Unit journals will likely be the only source of finding any specific day in time when some identifiable unit had it for that moment.

I feel my last post was akin to that of a spoilt brat and I apologise for my behaviour.
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Home of the Maple Leaf Adapter
2 Canadian Mk1 Ferrets
M4 Treadway bridge training sets
Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908 ex PPCLI
Canadair CL70 CFR 58-91588
Bombardier Skandic WT 97-26076 LOSV
Armstrong MT500 serial CFR 86-78530
Land Rover S3 Commanders Caravan Carawagon 16 GN 07
Trailer Cargo 3/4 T 2WHD 38 GJ 62
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  #7  
Old 26-01-21, 18:06
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Alex Sandor Csank Alex Sandor Csank is offline
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Default It looks like you're going to need to score a TRW pretty soon too!

You're growing a pretty healthy collection of Canadian military bikes, young man! You KNOW that eventually you will need to add a TRW to that bunch, don't you?
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  #8  
Old 27-01-21, 04:20
maple_leaf_eh maple_leaf_eh is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Craig View Post
In discussion with Ed Storey I am trying to grind down as to whom within 2 Svc Bn this bike might have been used by.

I have watched this video which kind of spread the possibilities far and wide as there is both MP and Signals components contained within.

.....
At RV 89 I was a clerk at Div Rear in the G4 shop. We set up in a two-storey classroom building on the base at Wainwright. The maintainers, loggies, and movements were managed by this detachment from FMCHQ. This was pre-Internet, and almost all comms were physical. We had wired telephones, and for some things - some times - there was a line of sight microwave telephone system that connected out to the deployed Service Battalions. There was a detachment of Dispatch Riders from 1 Canadian Signals Regiment that hung out in our 1st floor. They had Iltis' and would drive out to pickup non-urgent paperwork, and bring it back to my office where we sorted it to the various desks. (Most of the time, they just hung out in my office and oogled my very attractive coworker, who would decide which swain to favour with her attention.)

So, it is entirely possible that your motorcycle was used by dispatch riders to carry the mail that needed to go back and forth to Div Rear from the Svc Bns, but didn't need to clog up the electronic message circuits.
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  #9  
Old 27-01-21, 16:42
Grant McCullough Grant McCullough is offline
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Hi Robin, looks like you found a nice project to keep you busy. The first time I saw one, I asked the rider what it was, he said it was a Harley, the side cover on that bike also said Harley Davidson. I suppose the parts supply was going to the CF,from Harley by then. I only saw one in service once, the previously mentioned rider noted my enthusiasm, but (Wisely) declined my request to ride his machine.

I also own one of these hard to find machines. It took quite a few years from the first time I saw one, until I was able to get one for the collection.

Force Motorcycles out in the UK has a large amount of spares. You may require some of their wares, judging from the look of the piston and the strange angle of the connecting rod. I would love to know the cause of the engine failure, to avoid any future ones. If you find out the cause, please share with the community.

I hope you the very best in successful resurrection of this rare machine.

Grant McCullough
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  #10  
Old 28-01-21, 05:39
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Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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Thank you all for the comments.

Alex, the TRW doesn't interest me frankly, don't know why, but doesn't.

Grant thanks for the comments.

The bike went by Covid courier to a mate who is going to assemble the bike for me. The Canadian parts manual has arrived.

He has put the two halve together so far and that's about it. Once he gets the manual the shopping list will come out and the parts order will go in.

Maybe riding this summer, who knows.
Attached Thumbnails
armstrong mt500 manual.jpg   armstron mt500 together.jpg  
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Robin Craig

Home of the Maple Leaf Adapter
2 Canadian Mk1 Ferrets
M4 Treadway bridge training sets
Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908 ex PPCLI
Canadair CL70 CFR 58-91588
Bombardier Skandic WT 97-26076 LOSV
Armstrong MT500 serial CFR 86-78530
Land Rover S3 Commanders Caravan Carawagon 16 GN 07
Trailer Cargo 3/4 T 2WHD 38 GJ 62
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  #11  
Old 28-01-21, 16:58
Peter Phillips Peter Phillips is offline
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Default I've Seen Them In Pet!

Hi Robin, I was in 1 Svc Bn from 86-92 then 2 Svc Bn from 92-97 and do vaguely recall seeing a few bikes neglected and sitting in various compounds in Calgary and Petawawa. If anyone asked about them the story goes that they were for DR's (Signals Dispatch Riders) to use to convey messages in the field from the Battalion CP to the Brigade CP. But I was also informed that no one used them because a) they broke down a lot, and b) no one was qualified to ride them, and c) the Iltis had a heater and overhead protection. Don't forget the Iltis was the new toy back then so they got used a lot. And as I think about it, 90% of exercises were held in the Fall, Winter and Spring which made the bike even less desirable to use. In all the exercises I was involved in from BC to NB over 11 years in support of every unit in the Brigade, I can truly say I never seen one working in person. That's not to say they weren't a good machine in the right hands.

On a lighter note working for various units (1 Fld Amb to be exact), anyone ever load up a 6 x 6 5-ton with feminine hygiene products wearing webbing and a rifle with cam paint on Good times!
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  #12  
Old 28-01-21, 17:36
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Alex Sandor Csank Alex Sandor Csank is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Craig View Post
Alex, the TRW doesn't interest me frankly, don't know why, but doesn't
Well, that's certainly in MY favour, as you won't take mine then!
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  #13  
Old 28-01-21, 17:40
Ed Williamson Ed Williamson is offline
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I have one too
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  #14  
Old 28-01-21, 23:33
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Alex Sandor Csank Alex Sandor Csank is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Williamson View Post
I have one too
Ed, you DO have eclectic tastes in vehicles, don't you?
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  #15  
Old 07-02-21, 13:57
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Robin Craig Robin Craig is offline
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So the work has started, by my mate, not my handy work.

He has taken apart the front wheel hub. so far its new wheel bearings and brake shoes. he is thinking new control cables may be prudent and a fuel tap for the tank and new tires as these are shot.

It will be a slow process as he has other work to do but I am happy to have someone knowledgeable do the work for me. In the mean time I do work for others and my side job to afford it all, fair exchange, and progress.
Attached Thumbnails
armstrong mt500 front brake drum.jpeg   armstrong mt500 front brakes apart.jpeg   aemstrong front wheel hub .jpg  
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Robin Craig

Home of the Maple Leaf Adapter
2 Canadian Mk1 Ferrets
M4 Treadway bridge training sets
Kawasaki KLR250 CFR 95-10908 ex PPCLI
Canadair CL70 CFR 58-91588
Bombardier Skandic WT 97-26076 LOSV
Armstrong MT500 serial CFR 86-78530
Land Rover S3 Commanders Caravan Carawagon 16 GN 07
Trailer Cargo 3/4 T 2WHD 38 GJ 62
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