Thread Number: 36049  /  Tag: 50s/60s/70s Vacuum Cleaners
vacuum commercials
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Post# 386617   2/23/2018 at 09:29 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        

Thought some might find this interesting, it's a youtube channel dedicated to vacuum commercials and it has lots of them.


Post# 386618 , Reply# 1   2/23/2018 at 09:31 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
commercial for Eureka sweet 16

Does anyone know anything about this machine? Was it a canister or some kind of hand vac? I had not heard of it before seeing this commercial.


Post# 386624 , Reply# 2   2/23/2018 at 11:57 by huskyvacs (Northern Indiana)        

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I seen that channel but I don't pay any attention to it because they disabled comments.

Post# 386633 , Reply# 3   2/23/2018 at 14:37 by vacuumguy91 (Raleigh NC)        

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yuck...who would vacuum an ashtray...that must have really smelled bad for the length of the bag life in that vacuum...hahaha

Post# 386650 , Reply# 4   2/23/2018 at 22:02 by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

I did with my Grandmothers Classic Kirby until she used it the next time. My Grandfather took the so called heat for it. She however knew I was doing it when I cleaned the car. I was about 5 to 6 yrs old at the time.

Post# 386657 , Reply# 5   2/24/2018 at 02:38 by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Vacuuming ashtrays--NOT GOOD-this could be a fire hazard from the airflow in the vacuum fanning live ashes in the ashtray.At least that vacuum has a metal body.With a PLASTIC body machine-could start a fire!!!Ashtrays and fireplaces-not good for cleaning with a vacuum cleaner unless you replace the bag right afterward and put it in a metal container for trash pickup.And--Ash can start NASTY trash truck fires!!!!

Post# 386703 , Reply# 6   2/24/2018 at 23:12 by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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Hi Mike,

That Eureka Williams tv commercial is advertising the debut of one of the company’s most common canister vacuum cleaners throughout the 1970’s. It was the successor to the popular “canned ham” Empress and Empress Two designs from the late 1960’s.

The Sweet Sixteen vacuum line-up got its name from the model number series: 1600’s. The initial line-up had 4 models: 1620, 1640, 1660 and 1680. All were straight suction only canister cleaners when they debuted in 1970. They were boxier than the Empress Two, and had more powerful motors. The deluxe 1680 has a wider handle, visual bag check indicator with warning light, and a rotary dial to set the suction level. The original line up came in a metallic sky blue which is what is being advertised in the TV commercial that you mentioned. A year or two later, Eureka offered 2 of the models in Burnt Orange and and the other two in Harvest Gold.

When Eureka Williams introduced their Roto Matic power nozzle, it was sold with one Empress Two canister (the deluxe version), and two Sweet Sixteen canisters. These three Roto-Matic Power Teams has model numbers in the 1200 series. I remember the Burnt Orange Power Team was Model 1265, which was top-rated in Consumer Reports in 1973....second only to a Best Buy Eureka Princess Power Team (1255)...a fourth Power Team added to Eureka’s line up in that year.

The boxy Sweet Sixteen canister design survived way into the 1980’s, with even a stainless steel Sanitaire version appearing at some point. The design was also popular with department stores as Montgomery Ward and JCPenney, and Canada’s Eaton’s and The Bay sold Sweet Sixteens under their store brand names for over a decade.

Post# 386706 , Reply# 7   2/25/2018 at 08:46 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
awesome information and vacuuming ash trays

Thanks Brian, that information is awesome, sounds like those canisters were great machines, I wonder if the vacuum museum has any of the sweet 16 machines.
Regarding vacuuming ash trays, bad idea for several reasons. First, if any of that was still smoldering, it should start a fire in the machine. Second, ashes have lots of fine dust, which will cause problems for most household vacuums by cloging the bag and getting in to the motor. The best solution here is simply not to smoke, that resolves the issue completely.

Post# 386707 , Reply# 8   2/25/2018 at 08:58 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
kind of a shame

It's really a shame when you think of all the great machines Eureka made back then compared to what they make today. It does sound like during that time, canisters were more of a priority for Eureka than they were for Hoover. Eureka was late to the game with their power nozzle canisters but once they did come out, I have heard that they sold like hot cakes.
Also, does anyone know what the differences were with the different brushes from Eureka? There was the VGI, the VGII and the VGIII, presumably the brushes got better with each generation? There is also a brush roll called the CWP but not sure what that one was either. I have a Eureka Express power nozzle and I think that has the VGIII.

Post# 386715 , Reply# 9   2/25/2018 at 11:02 by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

The ash trays in the car were cold when I did that. We hadn't gone any where so there was very little danger of a fire. At that time Kirby's had only a shake out bag. Grandma's concern was more that you couldn't stand behind the vacuum to use it as the bag stunk so much from the ashes.

She did do in the bag on that machine cleaning around the wood stove one time. Thought things hand cooled off enough to vacuum around it after empting the ash pan. Not so much. She had the bag replaced and life when on. After that we swept around the stove first then vacuumed up any remaining ashes if we felt the need or just wiped up the stove board with a damp cloth or wet mop and walked away.

Post# 386716 , Reply# 10   2/25/2018 at 11:14 by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

Here are the different Eureka VG brush rollers https:

1st one is the VGI comes the one pictured is the 16"

2nd one is the VGII

3rd is the VGIII

All come in 12" and 16" sizes.

VGI is Helical. This one can have the beater bars removed and replaced with brush strips for a all brush agitator.

VGII and VGIII are the steel round agitators.

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 3         View Full Size
Post# 386718 , Reply# 11   2/25/2018 at 11:27 by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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Hi Mike,

You’re welcome!

Regarding the Vibra-Groomer brush rolls. The first one I feel was actually the best one! The VG1 had a thin, twisted helix shape aluminum body that was like a fan that allowed a lot of air flow to pass through the brush roll chamber. Imagine a flat bar of aluminum that is twisted 90 degrees. On each edge of the twisted bar are half replaceable brush strip and half metal beater bar. Many Sanitaire uprights still feature this unique helix brush roll - some with only brush strips which are better for sweeping glued-down commercial carpeting.

The VGII has a more traditional round tube shape and is made of shiny stainless steel. Instead of a pair of smooth metal beater bars, the VGII has mini bars staggered along the length of the tube in a spiral layout. There are four nubs on one side of the belt groove and three on the shorter side of the belt groove.

The VGIII was Eureka’s response to Hoover’s Quadraflex agitator. This brush roll has two rows of replaceable bristles that were stiffened by plastic bars on each side of the bristles so that the brushes had more “spring and fling” action. Not quite sure if this design actually swept out more dirt than the earlier Vibra-Groomers.

Post# 386723 , Reply# 12   2/25/2018 at 13:58 by kenkart (Mocksville, NC)        

A Sweet 16, I have the later power nozzle version..But for some reason the Sweet 16 is elusive!

Post# 386725 , Reply# 13   2/25/2018 at 14:29 by n0oxy (Saint Louis Missouri, United States)        
difference between sweet 16 models

does anyone know what the differences were between the 1620, 1640, 1660 and 1680? Did each model get better as the numbers increased or was it just different colors? I would love to find one of these as well. What about when the power nozzle canisters came out, were there several models of Eureka's first power nozzle canister series or just one? I bet those were great machines.

Post# 386727 , Reply# 14   2/25/2018 at 16:54 by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

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If I remember correctly, this was how Eureka laid out the line up - I’ll go in order of more deluxe to more basic:

1680: Deluxe version had wide carrying handle, Cordaway cord reel, control panel with Bag Guard and dial suction selector, deluxe attachments (Vibra Beat rug nozzle, regular rug nozzle, wider upholstery nozzle, square horsehair dusting brush), maybe a stronger motor too.

1660: all of the above except regular Eureka attachments: no Vibra Beat, smaller standard upholstery nozzle, standard round dusting brush

1640: same as 1660, except smaller handle and no Control Panel with suction dial and Bag Guard - the only extra feature was the Cordaway cord reel...also a weaker motor I think.

1620 - base line model: same as 1640 with no Cordaway - as the calm voiceover in the commercial says “no fancy stuff, no fancy price. Just a sweet and simple cleaning machine...”

The feature distribution was similar for the previous Empress II FastVacs: 1880, 1860, 1840 and 1820....if I remember correctly.

Post# 386728 , Reply# 15   2/25/2018 at 17:12 by eurekaprince (Montreal, Canada)        

eurekaprince's profile picture
For the Roto-Matic Power Teams:

1285: the canister was the deluxe 1880 Empress Two FastVac (in a brown colour)

1265: the canister was the deluxe 1680 Sweet Sixteen (in a Burnt Orange colour)

1245 or 1235 (can’t remember this model number): the canister was a more basic 1640 Sweet Sixteen in a Harvest Gold colour

1255: the canister was a basic classic square Princess model in red with a red Roto Matic Power Nozzle

In the 1973 Consumer Reports tests of vacuums, the 1255 and 1265 topped the Power Nozzle canister ratings. The deluxe 1285 was given the dreaded “not recommended” label due to a design flaw that pulled the power nozzle plug out of its port whenever the swivel hose rotated too far at the canister connection!

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