Thread Number: 11456
Pre-1980 Kirby Model Chart
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Post# 123670   2/1/2011 at 18:13 (4,772 days old) by vac_whisperer ()        

Heres the pre-1980 addition to my Post-1980 chart. I have to give credit to Charles Richard, because i got info for the 500-series off of his website. Ill post a link k to the webpage.On the Kirby R-C series, there wasnt real much info, and i didnt know anything, exept i think the R stands for "retail". I didnt include every single detail because i dont have that much time. And please correct me if i get anything wrong.

Kirby Model 2R- 1935
Kirby 3R -19??
Kirby 4R- 19??
Kirby 2C-1939
Kirby 3C-19??
Kirby 4C-19??
Kirby 505- 1945-46: Black. First Kirby to have new "Magic Finger" belt lifter.
Kirby 508-1948- Comepletely new color. Cloth cuff over metal bag top.
Kirby 509- 1949: Bag redesigned slightly.
Kirby 510-1950 :Almost identical to 509.
Kirby 511-1951: Some Kirby literature said this kirby didnt exist! Almost identical to 510.
Kirby 512- 1952 No changes other than model number.
Kirby 513- Updated color scheme and bag.Smaller motor.New style bag and logo.New push on-off switch.
Kirby 514- 1954: New bigger handle grip
Kirby 515- 1955- New 10- bladed fan and simplified bag design.
Kirby 516- 1956: First totally redesigned kirby in over 20 years. 5oth anniversary Kirby. New streamlined motor housing and new speckled bag.
Kirby 517- 1957
Kirby 518- 1958
Kirby 519- 1959. No change between the 516-519 kirbys.
Kirby 560- 1960: New style triangle belt lifter.
Kirby 561- 1961. No changes.
Kirby 562-1962 New tan color dubbed "sirroco". First kirby to be called "sanitronic". Bag now with little kirby logos all over them.
Kirby sanirronic VII- 1964
Almost identical to 562 exept for darker rubber bag topper.
Kirby Dual Sanitronic 50- 1965-1967
Called dual sanitronic because of new two-speed motor. Almost identical to 562 and sanitronic VII.Only kirby to have a glowing kirby logo on the hood.
Kirby Dual sanitronic 80- 1967-1970
Hideious avacado green color. Different belt lifter logo and new handle design.
Kirby classic- 1970-73
First redesigne kirby since 516. A lot bigger. Brown with yellow bag. Also new style belt lifter.
Kirby Classic Omega 1973-1976
Identical to classic exept for greek omega logo.
Kirby Classic III- 1976-1979
Candy apple red. Other than new color, identical to classic and Classic Omega. Belt lifter has a clear hole in it.


Post# 123682 , Reply# 1   2/1/2011 at 19:21 (4,772 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        
The Model 513

eurekastar's profile picture
You've done a really good job! I can help you fill in a few gaps. The Model 513 introduced several significant changes. 1) the nozzle casting was redesigned to accommodate a new brush roll design and rug plate. 2) When the 513 first came out, it had the same 3 amp motor that was used in earlier models. Later in the 513's production, Kirby introduced its new 4 amp motor. The physical size of the motor is smaller, but it is more efficient and powerful design. 3) I think (though I'm not positive) the larger handle grip with the flip down cord hook was introduced as a late production item.

Post# 123686 , Reply# 2   2/1/2011 at 19:32 (4,772 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        
The Classic Series

eurekastar's profile picture
There are actually significant differences between the Classic (1-CR) and the Classic Omega (1-CB). Though they look similar, the engineering of the 1-CR actually shares more in common with the engineering design of the Dual Sanitronic 50/80. In fact, Kirby was still using the same DS 50/80 foot switch on the 1-CR too. It was simply moved to the back of the bell housing and attached to a mounting plate. The safety switch was also a carryover from the DS 50/80. The Classic Omega WAS a complete redesign -- different motor housing, foot switch, motor, headlight, safety switch, etc. Even the nozzle casting is different design. They look the same at a glance, but there is a subtle difference in how they attach to the power plant.

Post# 123688 , Reply# 3   2/1/2011 at 19:39 (4,772 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        
The Late 500s

eurekastar's profile picture
There are minor engineering design changes here and there, but there is an important different in the 516-519. It has to do with the carbon brush setup. On Model 516 and Model 517, Kirby was still using the same brush holder that was used on earlier models. With Model 518, Kirby began using a different carbon brush holder and terminal field clip design that was carried through to the DS 80.

Post# 123698 , Reply# 4   2/1/2011 at 21:06 (4,772 days old) by bisonian (Where the buffalo roamed! (Ocala, FL))        
The 511 didn't exist?

That will certainly be news to the one sitting in my den....

Post# 123699 , Reply# 5   2/1/2011 at 21:11 (4,772 days old) by vac_whisperer ()        

Some Kirby litterature said it didnt, but it did. Charles Richard not only has one but has the owners manual! On the link, find the 511 and it will say.:


CLICK HERE TO GO TO vac_whisperer's LINK

Post# 123709 , Reply# 6   2/1/2011 at 22:20 (4,772 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        
The 511

eurekastar's profile picture
LOL! I also have a 511 that's all original, including the bag and cord. Other than the faded logo on the bag, it's in very good shape too.

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