Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 M16 - Hampshire/South

Where is that old bike?
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Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 M16 - Hampshire/South

Postby StewartR » Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:07 am

Hi,

my father used to own an ex Army AJS350 M16 (edited from G3) which I am very keen to trace. Its started it's working life in Singapore and he had it from the 1960s when he was in the RAF in North Africa. It came off the road when my brother and then I arrived and languished in his garden for the next 30 years, when he and my mum moved to Scotland and he sold it. At the time I was up to my elbows in my own kids and had stopped riding myself so dad didn't even offer me the bike. To be fair I would most likely have said no.

He ended up selling it to the brother of a friend of his called Bevis. I don't know the name of the brother, or their surname so have no way of contacting them.

Why am I so keen to trace it? The bike was owned by my dad since the 60s. He had it in North Africa when he was in the RAF and rode it from Tobruk to Petra amongst other adventures. Later on he honeymooned on it, taking my mum on an extended tour of Europe in the summer after they married. She was already pregnant by the time they went on the honeymoon and she has enduring memories of racing back from East Germany as the bump of my brother got bigger and bigger and worried her that she'd have to sit on the rack.

Roll forward to 2017 and I lost my brother to a very unexpected heart attack at just 49. I'd always associated him with the bike, as well as my folks obviously, but it wasn't until I lost him that I really realised what the bike meant. My folks are both nudging on to 80 now so, whilst I know it's just metal and rubber, I really want to try to trace this bike and that is what has brought me here.

Can anyone help? The bike was sold to Bevis's brother around 2004, when my folks still lived in Basingstoke. I have not idea where it went but gather it was back on the road soon after.

What I want to do is contact the current owner and ask to be offered first refusal should it ever come up for sale.

I'd really appreciate any help you can give me.

Cheers,

Stewart.
Last edited by StewartR on Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby Rob Harknett » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:32 pm

There was no model G3 AJS. Model G3 is Matchless.

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby Paul R » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:46 pm

If you know the registration mark you can at least check on the DVLA website if it is taxed or on SORN (ie still around) which may help to narrow things down a bit . Good luck with your search.

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby StewartR » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:50 pm

Rob Harknett wrote:There was no model G3 AJS. Model G3 is Matchless.

Yes, further looking and I realise that now. It was just known as 'The AJS' and was definitely a 350. Looks like it was actually a 16m. Not sure what the relevance of the second letter is so could be an MS. Please understand I'm really fishing in the dark. Cheers, Stewart

Also I don't know the reg. Pretty sure it is still on the road. I have asked my dad to help but it's hard going

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby ajscomboman » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:10 pm

I'm wondering if it's the Bevis brothers Bill and Jim that's being talked about. Jim is now in Kent and Bill is still in Oxford

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby Rob Harknett » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:27 pm

As the only info given referred to an AJS G3, the first step would be to try and confirm what the bike is. Which my first answer would have prompted. A picture would help also a reg no.

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 G3 - Hampshire/South

Postby StewartR » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:51 pm

ajscomboman wrote:I'm wondering if it's the Bevis brothers Bill and Jim that's being talked about. Jim is now in Kent and Bill is still in Oxford

Bevis is a Christian name. Dont have a surname- dad can't even remeber selling it

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 M16 - Hampshire/South

Postby ChrisTheChippy » Thu Sep 06, 2018 9:23 am

Hi
Best way forward would be to trawl through your m and ds photo albums see if you can get the reg number . With a bike they travelled so much on and owned for so long there must be a picture of the bike somewhere even if it is only in the background . The bike would have been fitted with a front number plate which was compulsory then so that would be easy to spot .
Unless you get the number you have a very limited chance of tracing the motorcycle .
Let us know how you get on . Good luck
Regards Chris

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 M16 - Hampshire/South

Postby StewartR » Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:14 pm

Thanks for all the tips. Spoke to my mum and she thinks there are photos but not sure she'll find them. She did say she remembers Bevis and thinks she may have a contact address somewhere. At the very least I will be aiming to identify the model and, if I can't trace dads, buy an identical one.


Anyway, I have now joined the club and, one way of another, will get my hands on the closest thing I can manage to dads bike, if not the bike itself. In the meantime I have an '88 Armstrong MT500 and '78 Guzzi 1000sp to get sorted.

I'll be back with news, info or photos - may well need more of your help with model identification.
Cheers, Stewart

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Re: Seeking an Ex Army AJS 350 M16 - Hampshire/South

Postby Rob Harknett » Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:37 pm

StewartR wrote:Thanks for all the tips. Spoke to my mum and she thinks there are photos but not sure she'll find them. She did say she remembers Bevis and thinks she may have a contact address somewhere. At the very least I will be aiming to identify the model and, if I can't trace dads, buy an identical one.


Anyway, I have now joined the club and, one way of another, will get my hands on the closest thing I can manage to dads bike, if not the bike itself. In the meantime I have an '88 Armstrong MT500 and '78 Guzzi 1000sp to get sorted.

I'll be back with news, info or photos - may well need more of your help with model identification.
Cheers, Stewart

A photo would at least help ID what the bike was. Which using some guess work, may have been an AJS that got a Matchless G3 engine fitted in it. In the 50's ex WD recon engines were plenty and cheap to buy. I recall when I bent forks in my 37 AJS I got ex WD Matchless forks to replace them. I questioned if they would fit ( only 16 then ) chap said yes and if you want a good as new engine, we have plenty of ex WD Matchless engines. Forks cost me £1 10 shillings and I paid the old boy across the road little to fit them for me. My wage was £1 for 8 hr day then.

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