Thread Number: 29511  /  Tag: 80s/90s Vacuum Cleaners
Let's Turn Two Husqvarna Viking 507 Uprights into One Working Machine!
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Post# 329339   7/15/2015 at 15:36 (709 days old) by henrydreyfuss (Ohio)        

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I've been patiently waiting to acquire a second Viking 507 for a long time. I purchased one on ebay a while ago, and it ran smoothly for about 5 minutes, then completely locked up. I was so disappointed! I tried to salvage it, and attempted to rebuild the motor. No luck. So I was left with a lot of nice parts but an unusable vacuum, which went into storage.

Yesterday I acquired a second 507 upright, and eagerly went to work. Expect a full teardown and explanation of this unique vacuum soon! Electrolux threw together a really modern upright in a small and lightweight package. Very different early effort for a clean-air upright, but it's aged well and is still very pleasant to use. With proper marketing and exposure, I think these could have been tremendously popular in the US, but these are two of the only Viking vacs I've ever seen in person.


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Post# 329356 , Reply# 1   7/15/2015 at 18:57 (708 days old) by Collector2 (Moose Jaw, Sk)        

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They were a very nice machine. I have the Canadian Dometic 505 and parts. Still works great. Did you get the accessories with either of your machines?



Post# 329357 , Reply# 2   7/15/2015 at 19:13 (708 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

Here in the UK, these cleaners were horrifically popular. The model 500 first appeared in the early 1970's, being replaced then by the 502 in 1975, with the 504 (same as the Dometec 505 above) making a debut a short while before that. This design ran for well over 10 years, the biggest design difference being in the roller brushes - the 505 will have external sleeve-bearings, but your 507 has a ball-race bearing sealed into the roller, the design of which allowed for longer brushes for edge cleaning.

These cleaners were given a facelift when production of them shifted to the Twin Turbo models. Essentially the same cleaner, just a different handle, and in later years a different hood too.

Given the larger retail price of these cleaners, I am not too sure as to why they were so popular in the UK, other than to say they were a perfect size for many UK homes and had a reputation for being of very good quality. Certainly I saw more of these cleaners in circulation than the cheaper alternatives of the same era, such as Moulinex and Goblin. Having said that, these cleaners cost much more to buy, so of course it stands to reason people were willing to pay to get them serviced and repaired, unlike they may have done with a budget brand.

From the point of veiw of Electrolux, the cleaners had enough weak-spots built into them to last what one might describe as "long enough" for the customer to be happy. Perhaps if anything they were slightly too easy to repair and even fully recondition, although Electrolux went a little too far the other way on that front when designing the 600 series in the early 80's - a range of cleaners that literally fell to pieces.


I found several for sale in the UK on ebay just now. Here is one:




CLICK HERE TO GO TO Vintagerepairer's LINK on eBay


Post# 329358 , Reply# 3   7/15/2015 at 19:14 (708 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

And here is a TV advert for the 502

CLICK HERE TO GO TO Vintagerepairer's LINK


Post# 329372 , Reply# 4   7/15/2015 at 22:19 (708 days old) by HenryDreyfuss (Ohio)        
@vintagerepairer, you beat me to it!

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I was going to link to that excellent commercial. I love marketing that can show the merits of product, in a short amount of time without gimmicks. Thanks for the information on these machines! Truly an enigma here.

The cleaner is finished, and looks wonderful. Runs flawlessly, and cleans much better than expected (there's a HUGE motor under the hood, and a gentle but generous brushroll). I'll post a gallery tomorrow.

You're right, these machines are a breeze to work on. I went in blind, and had no trouble at all tearing both of them down to the motors.

Collector2 - Thanks for the pic! Your machine looks very nice, and that bright yellow is one of my favorite colors. Sadly, I have not been able to find a set of attachments yet. I like the way the hose plugs into the bottom of the machine, and the tools themselves (Electrolux!) look excellent. I plan to keep my eyes peeled! When the motor locked up on the first Viking I purchased, I threw everything I could at it to save it, knowing that parts for these things are extremely uncommon in the US.





This post was last edited 07/16/2015 at 02:15
Post# 329389 , Reply# 5   7/16/2015 at 09:31 (708 days old) by rugsucker (Elizabethton TN)        
Viking 507

There was one Viking office near here in the late 80s that sold several 507s as well as the 2 tanks and shampooer.I think most of mine(none perfect but many with good parts) were scrapped in my warehouse cleanout.I did have an att set I put on EBay.Not sure if it sold.If still here and found again it will be available.I do have a very few upright & tank bags(some genuine).They were, as you have found, a very nice vac.

Post# 329396 , Reply# 6   7/16/2015 at 10:10 (708 days old) by henrydreyfuss (Ohio)        

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Rugsucker - I think a collector friend *may* have owned a Viking 507, but it may have been an imported Electrolux. Too long ago to remember. I didn't know that these were ever sold in the states, and it's a shame they didn't get to catch on here.

If the attachments are still available, I'd absolutely be interested. Also if you have any genuine bags, I'd be interested in those as well. I have a set of bags for mine, but they're generic, and single-layer. Pre-filter (thank God there's 2!), already had a fine coating of dust on it during my test.


Post# 329404 , Reply# 7   7/16/2015 at 12:01 (708 days old) by sebo_fan (Scotland, UK, member AKA ukvacfan, & Nar2)        

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Chris/Turbo500 is a big fan of these uprights. I have only ever had a basic one, the Z517.

Post# 329422 , Reply# 8   7/16/2015 at 15:46 (708 days old) by henrydreyfuss (Ohio)        
OK! Here's the work in progress...

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The cleaner smelled like it sat in a damp basement for 15 years, but the motor sounded great. I took the machine apart, and washed a handful of easily removable parts. I removed the motor, and disinfected the base, motor cover, and bag chamber.

As far as cleaning the machine, I keep it very simple. I very gently used denatured alcohol to remove scuffs (gotta be careful because it can strip the finish if overused). I disinfected the bag compartment and base with Lysol spray (I was a little apprehensive to use it due to the age of the machine, but it was fine). I used 3-in-1 oil for the wheel axles (no squeaks!), and bearing grease for the ball bearings inside the brushroll. The brushroll ends of both vacuums had no hair in the ends, just fine dust (a good design!) I then used just one coat of Mothers Aluminum Polish to buff the plastic up to a long-lasting shine.

The sticker on the hood was peeling in one corner, so I re-glued that down to the base.

The picture of the two shows the small differences between the two machines. Note the different placement of the warning sticker, and different color hose ends in the base.



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Post# 329424 , Reply# 9   7/16/2015 at 15:52 (707 days old) by henrydreyfuss (Ohio)        
Here's the finished product! *yay*

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No more musty smell, and it shined up very nicely. Cleans great (the straight agitator brushes beat the carpet nicely), sounds great, and I'm very happy with how it looks.

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Post# 329440 , Reply# 10   7/16/2015 at 18:38 (707 days old) by Collector2 (Moose Jaw, Sk)        

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Nice job. You've got a great looking machine there.

The attachments for the Viking are a bit different than those on the Dometic (newer style) This picture is from the net. The white small nozzle, of course, isn't from that machine


Post# 329442 , Reply# 11   7/16/2015 at 21:11 (707 days old) by HenryDreyfuss (Ohio)        
Thanks!

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It's very quiet, and on the recommended speed for rugs, the gentle cleaning action reminds me of a classic Hoover Convertible.

As far as build concerns, I could see these being prone to clogs, as the dirt path is quite narrow by American standards.

Those tools look nice! I like the maroon/orange/gray color scheme. I love that Riccar has brought back Lux's excellent combo tools. Much better than the combination tools on most modern vacs!

I can see where Lux USA got their inspiration for their machine from these models, but their first attempt at a clean air upright was an absolute beast in comparison!



Post# 329449 , Reply# 12   7/16/2015 at 22:24 (707 days old) by Singingrainbow (Texas)        

It is an interesting little machine. Very quiet, suprisingly small, and good cleaning action. That machine from the recent most picture is sitting a few feet away from me right now. Sadly never got the manual though...
Great find and wonderful job on the restoration!
Scott


Post# 329461 , Reply# 13   7/17/2015 at 03:51 (707 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        
Chris/Turbo500 is a big fan of these uprights

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He certainly is!

I love the 500 series and Twin Turbo's that superceded them, hence my username.

Ok, so they didn't clean a carpet quite as well as a Hoover and they didn't have the suction power of the cylinders of the time, but Lux found the perfect middle ground between performance and convenience. They did a very good job on both carpet and above floor cleaning.

As Benny mentioned earlier, these were absolutely everywhere at one time. They ran in this design from 1971 to 1985 when they were replaced by the more modern looking (although still the same cleaner under the hood) Twin Turbo.

The original series went 500 (1971), 502 (1975), 502S* (1978), 504* (1978), 506 (1981), 550 and 560 (1983).

*The 502S and 504 were launched at the same time as budget and top of the line models. The 504 was superceded by the 506 in 1981 whilst the 502S continued as the budget model. In 1983, both the 502S and 506 were replaced by the 550 and 560, which were the last of the original design.

The very last variation on this was the z1070 Turbo2. Originally, this style was discontinued in 1990 as it was replaced by the newly designed Glider range, but they continued to sell back stock in such huge numbers that Electrolux brought it back as a very budget machine, so the line up went Turbo2, Glider, Contour (BOL - TOL). Funnily enough, despite being a budget model and retailing for around 70, the z1070 was actually a much better cleaner than both the Glider (90) and Contour (120) which were above it in the range. The z1070 was also a Which? best buy.

The z1070 Turbo2 continued as Lux's budget upright until 1995 when it finally started to disappear from the shelves. Even after it started to whittle down in stock, it could still be picked up if one looked until as late as 1996 when it was finally ditched completely. By then, the Lux had 2 new TOL machines available - the Widetrack and the Powersystem - so the Glider became the budget model, Contour became the midrange and the Widetrack & Powersystem models became TOL.


Post# 329476 , Reply# 14   7/17/2015 at 09:34 (707 days old) by rugsucker (Elizabethton TN)        
Viking attachments

My set was(or is)same as reply 10.As mentioned the white nozzle was not included or needed.I have never had instructions.I know where bags are.Will have time to search for atts next week(I hope).Hose may have been cracked from age.Some Euro hoses seem fragile with time and use.

Post# 329495 , Reply# 15   7/17/2015 at 13:45 (707 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

Actually, the 502S did not show it's face until at least 1980. The 502 was still to be found in the 1979 Electrolux brochue. It also carried on after production of the 550 was started, ending up eventually as an excljusive model for Comet stores. There were a couple of changes to the 502S and 550, this being added plastic supports to the rear of the handle and at the very end of production no bag full whistle.

The Z1070 was a cracking machine, although I never understood why Electrolux wanted to make it when they already had the basic Glider selling for around the same price. There was absolutly no need for it in the sales line up, despite the fact the customers loved it. Without the 1070 the customers who wanted Electrolux cleaners would have had to buy a Glider, simple as.

Interestingly, that warning label on this Viking 507 was never fitted to UK cleaners. If this was a UK cleaner, the two internal hoses would suggest an overlap of parts from the 504 and 502 cleaners, where the hose end is brown on one and black on the other. In the UK the black replaced the brown colour. Also there is some variation in the colour of the motor cover and sole plate too, because the 500 cleaner was light grey to match the hood, whereas the 502 and 504 were almost always light brown, save for late examples where the motor cover was green or yellow respectivly.

This extended into the 506 and 502S cleaners which had black sole plates and motor covers to match the main cleaner, but soon after it all changed to generic black. Manufacturers do this again and again; they make so many individual coloured parts for a while, before reverting to black, white, or grey. It's never been cost effective to make so many coloured pieces and it never will be.


Post# 329506 , Reply# 16   7/17/2015 at 15:58 (706 days old) by henrydreyfuss (Ohio)        
Wow! Thanks for all the great information, everyone!

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They're fascinating machines, and I'm really enjoying it so far. Did the European models use cloth hoses for most of their run? Did Lux or any generic brands ever release really quality paper bags for them?

Post# 329507 , Reply# 17   7/17/2015 at 16:20 (706 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

At the most the bags were 2-layer. Cloth hoses were used up to the first of the model 506 with plastic hoses taking over from there. However, not all cleaners came with the tools - sometimes you had to buy them seperatly, and as there are so many variations of tool kits in the time these cleaners were in production for, it is quite possibly to see a tool kit much older or newer with a cleaner, depending on when the tools were purchased and what kit the retailer had in stock.

Post# 329512 , Reply# 18   7/17/2015 at 16:43 (706 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

Also the 504 was launched in the later part of 1974 / early 1975, not 1978.

Post# 329520 , Reply# 19   7/17/2015 at 18:35 (706 days old) by Collector2 (Moose Jaw, Sk)        

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From the Electrolux Bag and Filter guide.

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Post# 329542 , Reply# 20   7/18/2015 at 04:30 (706 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

Now the interesting thing about that Collector2 is that there is no mention of a floor tool in the tool kits - The original kits for the 500, 502, and 504 all had a floor tool of one design or another. Later kits never had them, so I suppose that's not why they are mentioned here.

Post# 329543 , Reply# 21   7/18/2015 at 05:05 (706 days old) by Collector2 (Moose Jaw, Sk)        

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Interesting. I hadn't noticed that was missing in the descriptions.

Post# 329546 , Reply# 22   7/18/2015 at 07:03 (706 days old) by jmurray01 (Scotland)        

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I just love the 500-series, they truly were ahead of their time when first released (much like the Dial-A-Matic/Convertible) and for UK homes they were the perfect size. 

 

In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if the size was a deliberate effort to steal customers away from Hoover's Junior models, by offering something that was just as maneuverable and effective but with clean air technology and a hose with enough suction to make a secondary cylinder vacuum redundant in day-to-day cleaning.


Post# 329547 , Reply# 23   7/18/2015 at 08:09 (706 days old) by Eluxfan71 (Switzerland )        
Volta U505

Interesting to see this modell under other brands. Here it was sold under the brand Volta. The Volta U505 was sold here around 1979.

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Post# 329548 , Reply# 24   7/18/2015 at 08:24 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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A few brochures. First up, the 504


Post# 329549 , Reply# 25   7/18/2015 at 08:25 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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Post# 329550 , Reply# 26   7/18/2015 at 08:25 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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506


Post# 329551 , Reply# 27   7/18/2015 at 08:26 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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Post# 329552 , Reply# 28   7/18/2015 at 08:27 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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550 & 560


Post# 329553 , Reply# 29   7/18/2015 at 08:28 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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Post# 329554 , Reply# 30   7/18/2015 at 08:31 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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551 - the first of the newer style Twin Turbo cleaners. Pretty much the same machine, just in new colour schemes, a bit more of a modern design and a far chunkier and more solid handle. The 551 was the base model Twin Turbo, with the 561 in dark blue being the TOL, then the 610 and 612 being the overall TOL cleaners with on-board tools.


Post# 329556 , Reply# 31   7/18/2015 at 08:33 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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The second main-run style Twin Turbo's in a much more sleek looking design and colour scheme, launched in 88. There were older style models still sold at this time as exclusives, but there's so many of these in various forms it would be difficult to list them all. Currys, Comet, Co-Op and the Electricity Board showrooms all had an exclusive.


Post# 329557 , Reply# 32   7/18/2015 at 08:34 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        

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Post# 329558 , Reply# 33   7/18/2015 at 08:39 (706 days old) by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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I always wondered why these European uprights did not have a headlight. The bulky motor head is perfect for a very large lens on the front.

Post# 329560 , Reply# 34   7/18/2015 at 09:00 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        
why these European uprights did not have a headlight

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I always wondered why members across the pond find a headlight so essential. Who vacuums in the dark? It's a pointless feature and a way for manufacturers to slap a higher price tag on the cleaner.

 

Incidentally, whilst headlights may not be a thing of the past on most European machines, Hoover, Panasonic & Goblin all offered uprights with headlights right up until the late 90's.


Post# 329562 , Reply# 35   7/18/2015 at 09:12 (706 days old) by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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I find them really helpful in illuminating any areas in shadows or even near the edges of beds and chesterfields where a sock or plastic bag might jam up the revolving brush. It also saves you from constantly running to turn lamps on and off in bedrooms and living rooms. Also, it's a great help for seniors who have poor eyesight which might prevent them from seeing bits of dirt and dust on the carpet.

I would never buy an upright without one. And it really is not very expensive to add the wiring for a tiny lightbulb and plastic lens.


Post# 329563 , Reply# 36   7/18/2015 at 09:24 (706 days old) by Turbo500 (West Yorkshire, UK)        
not very expensive to add the wiring for a tiny lightbulb

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true, but it traditionally it was a feature that one would pay more for. Just because it doesn't cost a lot to make, doesn't mean that the manufacturer won't charge more for it just because it has a headlight and doesn't actually have any impact on performance.

 

As for running around and turning lamps on, vacuuming at night isn't something I normally do.


Post# 329566 , Reply# 37   7/18/2015 at 10:27 (706 days old) by jmurray01 (Scotland)        

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"As for running around and turning lamps on, vacuuming at night isn't something I normally do."

 

A lot of older houses have "dark areas" though that aren't naturally illuminated, especially in big American houses.


Post# 329572 , Reply# 38   7/18/2015 at 11:24 (706 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

A headlamp might have not cost very much in terms of parts, but the additional labour which would have gone into assembling each & every cleaner with a headlamp would have been considerable. On UK cleaners I think the Hoover Turbopower was just about the only one where additional assembly time was kept to a minimum, but even then it would have added up.

Clearly there were two camps - those manufacturers who saw a headlamp as a selling point, and those who didn't. Electrolux never had headlamps on uprights, nor did they have automatic cordwinders on any of their uprights, save for one model of the Glider in the late 80's / early 90's which was very short lived. Electrolux always sold themselves on the performance and quality of their cleaners, rather than adding on subjective extras which the competition were using.

You only have to look at the Moulinex Major to find a cleaner which had everything on it and still cost less than many of the others. Popular as it was, it doesn't appear to have impacted the sales of the less-fancy Electrolux 500 cleaners.


Post# 329701 , Reply# 39   7/20/2015 at 12:41 (704 days old) by sebo_fan (Scotland, UK, member AKA ukvacfan, & Nar2)        

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In my experience, its a typical American thing to have a light on an upright vacuum cleaner. Another helpful feature when one can't be bothered to turn on a light. Given that we had the Holy Loch Naval U.S base in Scotland where I reside, I saw a lot of American homes with a lot of American appliances and plenty of Hoover uprights with dirt searcher style lights. Their homes weren't dark; there was little difference to the American homes that the Navy base built aside from voltage and electricity power plants nearby the homes to cope with the change of voltage and appliances that the families brought over.

And yet, for the most part whenever my late parents' Hoover Ranger light stopped working, they seldom replaced the bulb - reason being the vacuum failed to go under low furniture any way when the light "showed up dirt" and the non-functioning light didn't impede the robust performance that the Ranger provided.

Miele also fitted LEDs as standard as part of the S7 uprights, but only reserved the function on the top two of higher priced versions versus the basic ones that do without.

A lot of Hoover/TTI branded uprights available in the U.S and the U.K have cosmetic differences AS WELL as a blanking plate over the area where a light can be found on the U.S versions. Only a few models have the light retained. Bissell in the UK are an example of this - some of their bagless uprights have LED lights retained.

Another American "trait" I noticed when growing up are uprights with cord rewinds. Sadly Europe and UK don't feature many uprights that have auto cord rewinds built in.


Post# 329758 , Reply# 40   7/21/2015 at 00:46 (703 days old) by HenryDreyfuss (Ohio)        
Thanks for all the great ads and information!

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As an American, I admit I'm pro-headlight (spoiled). The S7 has beautiful LED headlights, that cast a shadow on dirt before it picks it up.

I don't miss headlights on machines that don't have them, but I always welcome them.


Post# 329764 , Reply# 41   7/21/2015 at 03:30 (703 days old) by Vintagerepairer (England)        

The advances in LED light bulb technology mean that lamps are seemingly endless now - My last wahsing machine had a control panel festooned in them. And of course some are so bright they are being used in actual househole light bulbs. What a contrast this is from the bulkier neon bulbs which were used in the past -the very same in the Electrolux cleaners which had illuminated switches- where having one on an appliance was considered useful, and two simply decadent. LEDs really have replaced the neon bulbs for good now on many appliances, though I see the latter is still widely used on kettles, irons, and wall sockets & switches which require illumination.

Post# 329768 , Reply# 42   7/21/2015 at 06:18 (703 days old) by sebo_fan (Scotland, UK, member AKA ukvacfan, & Nar2)        

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I have already bought LED light bulbs for my home - they're fantastic and because they're mainly plastic, there's no fragility involved any more since no glass exists.

Post# 370952 , Reply# 43   4/18/2017 at 16:15 by gsheen (Cape Town South Africa)        

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The 500 series is what gave Electrolux their name in Sa. While we got all the early ones from the 500 502 504 it was the 506 and almost identicle 560 that sold the most. The 506 had no competition from the then market leader Hoover who was still selling good but vastly outdated Hoover seniors and concept ones. They took the market from Hoover with powerful lightweight vacuums with the best hose suction of any upright on our market at the time.
The 560 was almost the same colour with slight changes to the trim. The motor was a better design that was not sealed but able to be worked on. On the competition front the 560 competed witb the origional turbo power but again although the turbo power had the better brush roll its build quality was terrible and the Electrolix triumphed again.

It seems that everyone who has walked into my shop since i had the display up has said Oh wow my mom had one or We had one.


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