Thread Number: 10039
A Prince of a Royal Find!
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Post# 109175   9/24/2010 at 16:47 (3,436 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        

Here are some photos of the Royal Prince hand-vac I found yesterday in San Clemente (see thread in off-topic department).

It came complete with the machine, original carton, two packs of bags, instruction sheet, dealer location list, an advertising slip for the upright and tank models, two packing slips, two brush rolls and two belts!

It's in lovely -- apparently barely used -- condition.

Two brush rolls, one slightly worn but with perfect bristles, and two belts (neither of which was installed in the machine).


When was the last time you purchased something with quality control slips??!

"Such a deal" -- the sticker price at the thrift shop.

Two packs of bags (which I won't use -- I'd rather just shake out the cloth bag).

"...far superior to any belt ever used before in vacuum cleaners." A bit of hype perhaps?!

There are a few slight differences between the one I just got yesterday and the one I already have (although they both have the same model number), leading me to believe the one I already have is somewhat newer.

On the one I already have, there's a little plastic-covered metal tab in front of the switch. Some kind of safety guard perhaps? I can't figure out what its function is, really.

The belt cover is black, and there's a "Royal" decal stuck onto the brush-roll housing.

The end caps of the brush roll are soft black plastic (kinda like rubber), and there's warning info die-stamped into the bottom plate.

After I turned the machine over and saw the tangled thread, yes, I did remove it. (Arlee must have used it last.......!)

I really do like the Royal Prince. It's a great performer, durable and styled in a lovely color scheme.

I would, however, love to have one of the older models with a black and red bag, gold metal belt plate, black rubber handle and black cord. Now THAT model is a beautiful hand-vac!

Post# 109177 , Reply# 1   9/24/2010 at 17:01 (3,436 days old) by joe22 ()        
great find

any chance you could please scan that vacs for the home flyer, i do love royals


Post# 109195 , Reply# 2   9/24/2010 at 18:09 (3,436 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        
"Ask and ye shall receive..."

Here's the leaflet that came with the Royal hand-vac. It's pretty small, about 5"x8", so I enlarged it a bit.


Post# 109196 , Reply# 3   9/24/2010 at 18:10 (3,436 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        


Post# 109197 , Reply# 4   9/24/2010 at 18:30 (3,436 days old) by joe22 ()        


Post# 109200 , Reply# 5   9/24/2010 at 18:58 (3,436 days old) by kirbyclassiciii (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
Good Work, Charles

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
Congratulations on finding an old 1978-82 501 with its original box!

Could you please give me the serial # that appears on the nameplate applied to the back of your 501 (both this one and your other one that has the Royal decal below the nozzle plate)?

Seeing as this boxed one lacks the decal, I could think this is a 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981 or 1982 model. The one that has the decal would be a 1983 to 1995 model.

Thank you,


Post# 109219 , Reply# 6   9/25/2010 at 03:20 (3,435 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

I have a couple of Royal Prince hand held vacs like the one shown-beautiful specimen.Like the extra parts that came with it.belts and the brushes-one looks used-but OK.I found an older model Prince at a yard sale here-spotted it from the car no less while driving buy-and hit my brakes immiediately-bought the machine-it works good-paper inner bags won't fit the older machine.Do like the older ones Red-black bag.One of the very few vacuums I have found at garage sales here.This morning while going home-will watch the yard sales and look for any vac handles sticking up-or Royal hand vacs sitting on a table.

Post# 109223 , Reply# 7   9/25/2010 at 05:53 (3,435 days old) by kirbyclassiciii (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
History of the Royal Prince

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
Hi, I believe this is a listing of all the Royal Prince hand vacuums:
Model 157 - produced from 1937-circa 1954
Model 501 - produced from circa 1954-circa 1995

The early 501s (1954-1960) had the same red and gray color scheme, on its outer bag, as the model 601 upright, as well as the gray trim for the handle grip and nozzle bumper. Sometime after 1960 the bag changed to a dark blue and gray color similar to the model 602 upright, retaining the gray trim for the handle grip and nozzle bumper. This particular motif ran through about 1970.

On both bag designs there was a large crown and R-O-Y-A-L lettering (in the non-gray space), all embroidered in red (the crown and lettering were black on the red/gray bag).

Then around '70, the bag (and the overall trim) changed to the same shade of blue used on the model 880 deluxe upright, and the nozzle bumper was now red. For 1978 the bag changed to the "Royal Diamonds" pattern that would also be used on the first-run Dirt Devil bags (1984-1994). This motif lasted until the end of Prince production circa 1995.

In 1983 or '84, the Royal decal was applied below the nozzle plate, and I believe it was also around this particular time that the motor was enlarged from 1.2 to 1.8 amps.

Anybody else who has a good memory of Royals past and present, please correct me as necessary.

Thank you,


Post# 109240 , Reply# 8   9/25/2010 at 10:43 (3,435 days old) by lux1521 ()        
A few odd ones...

Your overview is fairly complete, but your missing a few on each end of the spectrum. Way back, probably around the time of or prior to the 157 there was a straight suction variant. It was just like a normal Royal hand vac but had a straight suction nozzle bolted on instead of the conventional one. Don't confuse this machine with the straight suction royal handvacs with side mounted bags, cause they made one of those too.

One the modern side, the was a pro series version of the 501 that came in very dark blue. I have one of these in my Royal Handvac collection. There was also the burgandy M5000, which I think was produced until 1998 or so. I have one of those too. One that I don't have, and have only seen one of was a green one with a Dirt Devil label on the nozzle.

While we're at it, Royal also marketed a horse groomer version.

Aside from Royal branded models, there were dozens (yes, dozens) of private label versions. They came in all kinds of colors, with the wildest being a hot pink Montgomery Ward. I've actually seen a couple of those, so it's not something someone did themselves.

Pro Series:

Post# 109247 , Reply# 9   9/25/2010 at 11:09 (3,435 days old) by suckolux (Yuba City, CA)        

suckolux's profile picture
Had one, loved it, gave to a dear friend.

Post# 109264 , Reply# 10   9/25/2010 at 13:53 (3,435 days old) by kirbyclassiciii (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
Thank you. Yes, there was the M5000 version of this which I believe was part of the "Preferred" ensemble, along with the M8000, M9000 and M9700 uprights ... but I can't recall the exact canister models.

Also, the 501 had also been sold through Hudson (pre-Dayton/Hudson), Montgomery Ward, Hild and Electro-Hygiene.


Post# 110015 , Reply# 11   10/2/2010 at 13:56 (3,428 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        
Speaking of the pink MW branded version...

... here it is!

CLICK HERE TO GO TO electrolux~137's LINK on eBay

Post# 110024 , Reply# 12   10/2/2010 at 16:15 (3,428 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
I may need to backtrack and say that the Prince's 601-style bag came after that of the 602-style bag (you know, because of this video - watch the last second or so of it). Does anyone else know how long ago the 501 used the dark blue and gray bag?

The video (not mine, obviously) would date from 1967, 1968 or 1969. His video has his 501 with the red and gray (601) bag on it.



Post# 110215 , Reply# 13   10/4/2010 at 14:43 (3,426 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
1982 2-Amp 501 on eBay

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
In 1982, the 501 was rated 2 amps.

Serial #G82-D-38467 (mfd. July 1982). Vacuum even has the original box.


CLICK HERE TO GO TO KirbyClassicIII's LINK on eBay

Post# 110220 , Reply# 14   10/4/2010 at 16:52 (3,426 days old) by lux1521 ()        

That 2 amp 501 must be rare. All 501s I have seen are rated either 1.2amps for the old style with carbon brush caps and oiling ports, or 1.8amps for the later non-serviceable motor. The oldest ones were rated at 175 watts, which would be about 1.5 amps at 120 volts.

The box also shows the high end metal attachment set. I can't remember if I've ever seen one of those for sale.

Post# 110232 , Reply# 15   10/4/2010 at 19:47 (3,426 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
It sure is, but this 1982 model was also the first time the Royal decal was placed below the belt cover, preceding the uprights by five years.

And what is it about the 1.8-amp motor on the 1983-up models that is non-serviceable except by dealers?


Post# 110247 , Reply# 16   10/4/2010 at 21:49 (3,426 days old) by sukething ()        
Well thanks Ben for showing my video...

Here is a pic of the twins. One was the one I got in the movie and the other was the grandparents. As you can see I only have the one box left.

Post# 110248 , Reply# 17   10/4/2010 at 21:51 (3,426 days old) by sukething ()        
The box..

It says model 150 but the box is probably wrong. Yes under the machines it says Model 501

Post# 110249 , Reply# 18   10/4/2010 at 21:53 (3,426 days old) by sukething ()        

What a great find my friend with all the book work, thats amazing. There is one like this at one of local shops I may get the next time I go back. All it has is just the machine.

Post# 110259 , Reply# 19   10/4/2010 at 22:58 (3,425 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        

David, it's so cool and amazing that you still have the Royal hand vac you got as a child. And I ==love== your YouTube video of you using the D80!!

Post# 110260 , Reply# 20   10/4/2010 at 23:25 (3,425 days old) by sukething ()        
Thanks Charles...

I am glad you enjoy it and I am honored to finally get it on youtube to share with eveyone.

Now I want to work on making videos of some of my favorite machines, although I think I am going to need a little help with that. I do have still pics now of a few of them. Sunday I just moved 12 or more of them up to my adopted moms in Loveland in her basement. I have kept my favorite ones here with me. I need to seriously organize and record all the things I have, but now I cant do it alone I will need some help at some point, there is so much to go through. I would love to have a mini meet here just for the help. And of course share with people some of my doubles of things for their help.


Post# 110262 , Reply# 21   10/4/2010 at 23:59 (3,425 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        

Gee David, I'm sure people would be glad to help you - I'd be there in an instant if we were closer. I don't know who's near you in the Denver area but there must be some collectors out there.

Denver folks, please rally around and give David a hand -- he's one of the dearest people you'd ever want to meet, and has been a member of the VCCC since 1991!!

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