"Where the history of snowmobiling comes to life"
1985 Buran

1985 Buran

1985 Buran: The Buran snowmobile was produced by Commune of Moscow Urrs, Russkaya Mechanika (div. of Rybinsk Motor JSC) Jaroslavska in Russia. In the 1970's the Russian government began research for a working snowmobile. Budgets were not available for civilian equipment but the government wanted an efficient snowmobile for snow operations. Development was started by Rybinsk Motor JSC. The 1971 Buran was a copy of the Ski-Doo Alpine. Ski-Doo brought snowmobiles to Russia & the Russians bought 3 sleds. They were in the middle of a Cold War & were not concerned about copyrights. The copy was a very detailed make over. Even the Rotax engine was closely copied. The Buran would remain a main production model. In 1986 the Russian authorities stated that 100,000 units had been made since 1971. The snowmobiles were only made for the government or army until mass production was proposed in 1973 & they were made for civilian use (per military specs.). The 1985 Buran was powered by a 2 cylinder 635cc engine with a 4 speed transmission (2F, N & R) & could reach 55 mph. It had dual tracks & one ski, dual brake levers & weighed 606 lb. It was said that the snowmobile could often be seen without its hood to keep the engine cool. They were built for use in Siberia where it is obviously very cold. The Buran is a reliable inexpensive snowmobile, which was made by a reputable Russian manufacturer. Buran in Russian means "blizzard" or "a strong wind bringing snowstorms". The only known Buran model in Canada was in the J. Armand Bombardier Museum in Valcourt, Quebec, & is now owned by the Top of the Lake Museum in Naubinway, MI.

On Sept 20, 2019, The Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum was awarded a grant of $12,500 for Operational Support from the State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA) and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA – ART WORKS). The grant was awarded through the MCACA peer review process and was one of 561 applications to compete for MCACA fiscal year 2019 funding. The grant requires a 1:1 match and helped the museum leverage the $12,500 of support from its annual income and the many donations from supporters. In particular the museum has received grants from the Graymont Community Economic Development Fund and the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. It has also received significant donations from the Antique Snowmobile Club of America, The Midwest Vintage Snowmobile Shows, Inc., many snowmobile clubs, several recreational and snowmobile shows, the museum’s internal $1,000.00 Challenge, and many museum members. The grant funds will be applied to museum operating costs. Applicable costs include internal operations, marketing, travel to shows within the State of Michigan and cost of employees. The MCACA peer review process allows for each grant applicant to be competitively considered by a panel of in-state and out-of-state arts and culture professionals. This ensures the taxpayers, who support this project through legislative appropriations, and all other visitors or residents in Michigan will have access to the highest quality arts and cultural experiences. A complete list of grant awards around the state is available by contacting MCACA at (517) 241-4011, or by visiting the MCACA website at
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Top of the Lake Snowmobile Museum
P.O. Box 2
W11660 US-2
Naubinway, MI 49762
Hours: 906 477-6298
Appointment: 906 477 6192

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