Thread Number: 10759
Royal Uprights - Rite-Hite or Au-Toe-Matic?
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Post# 116350   11/29/2010 at 05:29 (3,474 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

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For all those of you familiar with Royal all-metal uprights: does anyone prefer the Rite-Hite screw-type height adjustment system, or the 5-position Au-Toe-Matic toe-touch height adjustment system?

The Rite-Hite adjustment system was until 1987 the only method of adjusting height on a Royal upright. Models 887, 361, 363, 381 and 383 (last four units are heavy-duty commercial models) were the first Royal metal uprights to use the Au-Toe-Matic toe-touch height adjustment system.

Also, some Royal metal uprights with the Rite-Hite adjustor as standard could be specified with the Au-Toe-Matic system by adding an "F" at the end of the model number (e.g. 886F, 6103F). Likewise, some models with the Au-Toe-Matic as standard equipment could be specified with the Rite-Hite system by adding "RH" at the end of those model #s (e.g. 2075RH).

From Royal's official website, those models with Rite-Hite proclaim "infinite" height settings.

So, do you folks prefer the old-style Rite-Hite or the Au-Toe-Matic system? I also want to know if you have modified any of your vintage Royal uprights to use the Au-Toe-Matic, or vice-versa?


Post# 116360 , Reply# 1   11/29/2010 at 09:11 (3,474 days old) by revooh ()        
I have

a collection of 23 Royal Metal uprights with the screw adjustment feature and two newer ones with the 5 position height adjustment feature. These are all 25 different models and vintage. I prefer the screw type adjustment feature for a more accurate adjustment but, the 5 position is easier to use. I only have one with the infinite toe adjustment feature and it is a bugger to get the right adjustment because it works so easy. So, I guess I prefer the old screw type. I have never changed a Vac from one type of adjustment to another.

Post# 116375 , Reply# 2   11/29/2010 at 14:23 (3,473 days old) by scvacuumguy (SC)        

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I absolutely love the magic button that pops out on the rite-hite. The toe system is better for commercial use though, since most commercial users do not waste the time or energy required to adjust the vac to the proper height.

Post# 116401 , Reply# 3   11/29/2010 at 16:29 (3,473 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
Would Like to See Your 25 Uprights...

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Could you please upload your collection of your 25 or so Royal uprights? Also, could you please give me their model #s and serial #s?

Thank you,

Ben (KirbyClassicIII)

Post# 116405 , Reply# 4   11/29/2010 at 17:08 (3,473 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
How to Use the Rite-Hite System

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
For all those of you unfamiliar with the Rite-Hite, here are the official steps as taken from a Royal instruction manual:

1. Turn the Rite-Hite knob (located above rear wheels) counter-clockwise to raise the nozzle off the carpeting.
2. Turn on the vacuum cleaner. Use the finger switch conveniently located on the handle. Push down to start - up to stop.
3. Now, gradually turn the Rite-Hite knob clockwise to lower the nozzle to the carpet. (Common practice involves that once you adjust the knob low enough that the nozzle - and especially the revolving brush - begins contacting the carpet, try to adjust the height knob one more turn clockwise). On models also with Adjust-O-Rite, the stub should be flush with the plug as a means of indicating correct height adjustment.


Post# 116421 , Reply# 5   11/29/2010 at 19:29 (3,473 days old) by powertank ()        

The screw type is the best in my opinion. The toe systems do not stand up to abuse very well- especially the 5 position setup. The release pedal gets bent and the mechanism becomes difficult to use. The most recent infinate toe system works really well, but it wears out within a few years of hard use and needs to have the pin and release pedal replaced (not expensive, though). The hole for the pin in the release pedal gets worn to the point that the Royal won't stay at a set height.

The old style height adjust is very hard to mess up, and never drifts between heights. We've never had to replace one.

Post# 116430 , Reply# 6   11/29/2010 at 21:22 (3,473 days old) by truckerx (Palm Springs, CA)        

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Give me the Au-toe-matic any day. Otherwise, one must bend down to the level of the machine and turn and antiquated screw, whereas the toe adjuster is instant. I've had both machine types. My two cents.

Post# 116437 , Reply# 7   11/30/2010 at 05:38 (3,473 days old) by kenkart ()        

That miserable toe touch contraption WILL NOT STAY where you put it and is too touchy to adjust,I had one when it came out, got rid of it!!!My 801 is one cleaner I will never part with, and that is saying something because I prefer canisters!

Post# 116442 , Reply# 8   11/30/2010 at 06:20 (3,473 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

I prefer the "Rite Hite" knob over the "Ato-Matic"However Royal spelled it--Seems like Royal was trying to imitate Kirby here-Kirbys toe pedal height is much better.With Royals-if you bump the machine into something-the AutoMatic height changes.The Rite Hite does not.Royal does use the pedal height on some of its residentual uprights-not just the commercial ones.Oh yes-from the technicians point of veiw-the Rite Hite seems to hold up better-less breakage.The dealers that I know carry ONLY the Royal cleaners-commercial and residentual-that are equipped with the Rite-Hite knob system.

Post# 116444 , Reply# 9   11/30/2010 at 06:49 (3,473 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

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I would think that one that you once had was an 887, 992, 994 or 996. Think of the overall trim being navy blue in color.


Post# 116445 , Reply# 10   11/30/2010 at 07:27 (3,473 days old) by kenkart ()        

It was burgandy trim, can't remember the model.

Post# 116447 , Reply# 11   11/30/2010 at 07:33 (3,473 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        

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I own a Royal with the Autoe-matic height adjustment; however, I've never owned or tried one with the screw type adjustment so I have no basis for comparison. I do like the Autoe-Matic adjustment and have never had a problem with it.

Post# 116452 , Reply# 12   11/30/2010 at 07:45 (3,473 days old) by DeliriousDan ()        

I kept a Royal with the toe mechanism at work. Replaced it with a Kirby. The toe adjustment , even at its lowest setting, would not get the nozzle anywhere near my lobby mats, and there seemed to be no way to fix that. There was at least a half-inch gap between the bottom plate and the mat.

Post# 116496 , Reply# 13   11/30/2010 at 16:17 (3,472 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
You Had a Preferred Series

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If you say burgundy, then my guess would be a model 6103, 8000, 9100 or 9700.


Post# 117022 , Reply# 14   12/5/2010 at 05:29 (3,468 days old) by hygiene903 (Galion, OH)        

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When I bought a brand new 886 for my wife, we looked at several other models as well, and one of the reasons we bought the 886 was the Rite-Hite adjustment. One of the 5 Au-Toe-Matic settings might be too high or too low, but the Rite-Hite will put it right where it needs to be.

Post# 117832 , Reply# 15   12/11/2010 at 20:03 (3,461 days old) by djtaylor (Salt Lake City, Utah)        
Never cared for the Toe-thingie

djtaylor's profile picture
In my experience with Royals that Toe-Thingie was easily bent. Nearly every one of them I worked on was slightly bent, not so much as to keep it from working. I prefer the screw adjuster. It's too bad that Royal couldn't have adopted something like the Toe-Touch on the Kirby, that is really handy.

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