Thread Number: 34690  /  Tag: 80s/90s Vacuum Cleaners
Bagged Hand Vac Finds--Sears Craftsman Powermate and Dirt Devil Plus
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Post# 374715   6/29/2017 at 20:52 (326 days old) by broomvac (N/A)        

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Today I found two five-dollar-finds sitting together at one of the local Goodwills:
a 2.5 amp Sears Craftsman Powermate and a 3.0 amp Dirt Devil Plus. Both came home with me, but for different reasons.

If I could have taken only one, the Dirt Devil would have been the winner. Pro Tip: If you need a Dirt Devil Broom Vac motor (originals are unobtanium), take one out of a 3 amp Dirt Devil Plus hand vac. So far as I can tell, the motor in the 3 amp Plus is the same part that went into the 3 amp Broom Vac. Swap the fan and belt pulley from the Broom Vac onto the Plus motor and you're back in business.

You can do the same swap with a lower amperage motor such as the 2 amp from a 103 or a really early Plus Hand Vac, or the 2.8 amp variant of the Plus Hand Vac, but you may be dissatisfied with the results. Your Broom Vac may become gutless--trust me, I've tried.

Anyhow, the 3 amp Plus was bought so it can be sacrificed for either of my Broom Vacs should they ever need a motor transplant.

As for the Craftsman, it just seemed neat and I've never had one before, so why not? lol. IIRC, this one is made by Douglas and was sold under many brands: Craftsman, Kenmore, Kirby, Oreck, and Douglas, off the top of my head. Without trying it out yet, I think it'll be superior to the Dirt Devil. It's lighter and its brushroll seems more convincing. We shall see.

Both machines are in quite good condition--particularly the Craftsman--but you will just have to take my word for it until I can snap some pictures. The Craftsman looks the same as the one the collector has in the thread below.

I see a hand vac showdown in my future, between the Little Lux II, Royal Prince, Dirt Devil 103, Dirt Devil Plus, and the Craftsman. I can throw in the Hamilton Beach HV and the Dyson DC34 for good measure, too, but I don't expect these straight-suction machines to dominate.

Anyhow, any and all comments and conversation are welcome. Expect pictures soon.



Post# 374750 , Reply# 1   6/30/2017 at 17:51 (325 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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I remember seeing a Kenmore version of that Craftsman. It was gray and red and came with a package of Capture powder cleaner and there were two settings I believe, one to brush the powder into the carpet and the other for suction. I found one in the box with powder at a thrift store with my mom years ago. My Sears catalogs show it, but I don't recall seeing the Craftsman version.

Post# 374813 , Reply# 2   7/2/2017 at 17:20 (323 days old) by broomvac (N/A)        

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I'd be curious to see what the Kenmore variant of this looks like. The Craftsman that I found does not have the valve you speak of to divert the suction. It does, however, have a two speeds, a feature I have never seen on a Kirby Vacuette.

I promised pictures. Here are shots of the vacs in as-found condition. Both are nice, especially the Craftsman. Underneath the grime, I sense there is a low-mileage vacuum in very good condition; its bag is in exceptionally good shape.

The Dirt Devil bag is in slightly worse condition because the fabric has pilled some. No worries, I have a spare bag for it!

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 2         View Full Size
Post# 374817 , Reply# 3   7/2/2017 at 19:49 (323 days old) by vacuumlad1650 (Chicago Suburbs)        

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I found one of those Red and Black Craftsmen almost new in the box when my Great-Great-Aunt moved to a nursing home. My grandparents have it now, and still use it to keep up with the car and dot hair! Very loud, but very good cleaner!

Post# 374870 , Reply# 4   7/3/2017 at 21:52 (322 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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Here's the catalog page of the Kenmore, hopefully it's big enough to read it.

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Post# 375593 , Reply# 5   7/19/2017 at 20:57 (306 days old) by broomvac (N/A)        
Two steps backward and one step forward.

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I have good news and I have bad news.

Let's start with the bad news.

1. Upon closer inspection, I discovered the Dirt Devil Plus 08100 in my posts above had suffered a complete fracture of one of its base plate mounting posts under its previous ownership. No great loss--I wanted this one mostly for its 3-amp motor anyways.

2. I discovered the wiring inside the Craftsman had deteriorated to the point I felt safety was a concern. Let me tell you, I've repaired a ton of vacuums and rarely do I turn them away due to safety concerns, but this one qualified. I disassembled it to clean it and the connections for the large resistor utilized for "low" speed simply disintegrated. It's a shame; I really wanted to keep this one, but I thought it wasn't worth the risk of fire or electrocution.
Interestingly and unbeknownst to me, the Craftsman employed the same power nozzle-style GS electric motor that the Dirt Devil hand vacs and Broom Vacs use. I would have kept it, but I'm only interested in keeping the 3 amp motors, not the 2.5 amp ones.

But, I have some very good news!

For a grand total of four dollars, I bought this close-as-you-can-get to new Dirt Devil Plus 08130. I found it in its original box, complete with its owners manual, parts ordering slip, and other pamphlets in their unopened plastic. I would call it new-in-box, but it's evident this cleaner was used at least once since it had some dust in its factory-installed paper bag. This cleaner has sustained not so much a scratch; the housing, fan, bag, cord, brush roll: all flawless!

I like this 08130 better as a hand vac than I did the 08100 anyways. It's older than the 08100, so it features the smaller, round, completely removable front plug versus the larger (and uglier) trapezoidal plug which is permanently tethered to the front of the 08100. Although the 08130 has a 2 amp motor instead of a 3 amp motor, it features two speeds, a neat feature the 08100 lacked. The bag on the 08130 is made from the same material as the 103's bag, implying it is suitable for use as a shake-out, something I feel the 08100's bag would not cope well with. Finally, the 08130 has steel-reinforced base plate mounting posts where the non-reinforced 08100's mounting post cracked.

This one is a keeper, for sure!

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