Thread Number: 12539
Navy blue 1-CR?
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Post# 134067   4/25/2011 at 15:21 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        

Howdy, all! I am new here, but I am not what you would consider a collector. I've always admired Kirbys since my mom and my aunt each had a 1-CR. Once my brother was living at my aunt's house, and she was vacuuming his bedroom. In the process of doing so, she vacuumed up a .32 caliber bullet, and it discharged inside the vacuum. That old Kirby didn't miss a beat, just kept on Kirbyin'. This cemented my fondness for them, as they are LITERALLY "bullet proof".

So last Friday I was at a local thrift store, and I espied a gleaming vintage Kirby with attachments for $55. As it was Earth Day, everything was 50% off, making it $27.50. Score! Took it home, plugged it in and it works excellent! The bulb is burnt out, though-seems to be the only flaw. It is in superb shape-the cord is soft 'n' supple with no cracks (and still has the consumer warning/protection sticker near the plug), the bag seems like new, etc. I never thought I'd be so excited about a vacuum cleaner! I started to research the beast, and I came across something odd... The serial # tag states it is a 1-CR, which according to my research should be medium brown, gold bag-but this one isn't. It is dark blue. All of the accessories are the matching blue color, but the box is marked "Kirby Heritage". Again, my research shows that only the 'Tradition' line fro '79 to '81 was available in blue. One other odd thing: The serial number tag looks damaged and is not aligned straight, as though it was peeled off and then reapplied. Considering the rest of the vacuum is in such fine shape, it is strange that this one part is damaged. So what's the scoop, suction-heads? IS this a 1-CR? If so, was my research incomplete? If not, then what is it, and what the heck happened to the original serial number (note that this question is rhetorical, and I am not truly expecting you guys to know the answer :p...)?

Post# 134068 , Reply# 1   4/25/2011 at 15:51 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
The serial number tag

See? Damaged and not aligned straight.

Post# 134069 , Reply# 2   4/25/2011 at 15:53 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
Accessories box


Post# 134070 , Reply# 3   4/25/2011 at 15:55 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
Blue Heritage?

Seems to be missing some stuff, including owners manual (DRAT!)

Post# 134071 , Reply# 4   4/25/2011 at 15:59 (4,689 days old) by jfalberti (Visalia, CA)        
Welcome Rob! Now this is speculation on my part but,

jfalberti's profile picture

What you have there is what we used to call a bojacked Kirby (back when I sold Kirby).  You are correct that the Classic had brown trim, and a gold bag with a patch on the bag that said Kirby Classic.  What probably happened is a vacuum shop got this Classic 1-CR (probably on trade) and rebuilt it, replacing the brown trim with blue (probably happend while the Tradition was the current model) and advertised it as the latest model, while carefully not stating that it was brand new.  The unsuspecting person reading the shops ad in the paper, and having just had a demo, decides to go check it out.  Once in the shop, the owner trys to switch them to another brand (more than likely a Royal).  But the consumer is stead fast that they want the Kirby, and buy it thinking they got a steal on the machine for only $299, when the Kirby guy wanted over $800. 


Yours is a good looking machine, and you do have a choice.  You can keep it as is, or you can restore it to what it was when it came off the assembly line.  Either way is a win, because the Classic 1-CR really is a good Kirby.  Tell me, has it been converted to use disposable bags?

Post# 134072 , Reply# 5   4/25/2011 at 16:10 (4,689 days old) by jfalberti (Visalia, CA)        
Those attachments

jfalberti's profile picture

Look like Tradition hose and Heritage attachments in a Heritage box.  Unless the safety/speed selector switch was changed on the Classic, then that Tradition hose won't work on it, unles the motor end coupling is replaced with one from a Classic.

Post# 134073 , Reply# 6   4/25/2011 at 16:27 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
Still gleams!

How could any mortal resist this gleaming curvaceous lovely?

Post# 134075 , Reply# 7   4/25/2011 at 16:56 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        

So you are saying that it is a ...FRANKENKIRBY?
Nah, I'll keep it like this. I like the blue better than brown.
Regarding whether or not it has been converted to use disposable bags... I dunno. How would I check?

The hose seems to fit fine-here is a photo showing this. In my next reply, I will include a photo w/o the hose so you can see the motor end coupling.

Thanks for the info, good sir!

Post# 134076 , Reply# 8   4/25/2011 at 16:57 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
Motor end coupling

Here ya go, jfalbert:

Post# 134078 , Reply# 9   4/25/2011 at 17:23 (4,689 days old) by jfalberti (Visalia, CA)        
Did you try

jfalberti's profile picture

Turning the machine on with the hose attached?  Did it come on?  If so, then I'd suggest that you remove the hose and try to turn it on with nothing attached to the front.  If it comes on, then the safety switch has probably been bypassed.


As for the bag, I see it still has the Sani EmpTor.  Does the bag have a a zippered pocket, or a full zipper running from top to bottom in the back?  My bet is they put a shake out Tradition bag on it.


I agree with you, it is a beautifful machine, and don't blame you one bit for keeping it as it is.

Post# 134082 , Reply# 10   4/25/2011 at 18:09 (4,689 days old) by MoabBomb ()        
The safety switch...

works-not bypassed. However, the bottom side of the hose coupler has a screw threaded into it, so when the hose is attached, the screw depresses the safety switch. I am guessing it didn't come from the factory that way...

As far as the bag: Yep, zippered pocket (empty, alas). You know your stuff!

Post# 134093 , Reply# 11   4/25/2011 at 19:35 (4,689 days old) by suckolux (Yuba City, CA)        

suckolux's profile picture
I had one of those rebuilts like that, same trick on the hose, only ran on low speed, oh and it was blue too.

Post# 134099 , Reply# 12   4/25/2011 at 20:14 (4,689 days old) by vinvac (Dubuque IA)        

vinvac's profile picture

Who ever thought about that hose fix was very good.


The 1-CR would have had a different hose coupler and safety switch then what the Tradition would have used.


It is a Bo-Jack...but none the less will run like a Kirby should run.






Post# 134104 , Reply# 13   4/25/2011 at 20:28 (4,689 days old) by LillyLux (Oklahoma City)        

Pretty Kirby! I have a 561 which is also adorned with the blue colour popular about the time of the tradition...and I noticed something: The switch. It looks like the 1-CR's switch. The Omega onward had a very different design and your motor unit, I think with some above, is a classic. And....I love the classic! My mom's old classic had way better suction than a later Kirby she owned--so she pulled the old one back out of the closet. I agree with the guys too that, whether you restore it to a classic or not--it is a darling, rootin, toonin, Kirby that don't take no guff off anybody! I will never forget that! A vacuum by shooting:)

Post# 134127 , Reply# 14   4/25/2011 at 22:08 (4,689 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

kirbyclassiciii's profile picture
Wanna bet that many older Kirbys were rebuilt jazzed up in red like the Classic III while said model was being sold (in the years 1976-79)???

If anyone has a Classic III with the Classic 1-CR safety switch on it (the very first Classic Omegas had it before changes were made to it in early 1974), please show me a picture of it.


Post# 355696 , Reply# 15   7/8/2016 at 20:56 (2,788 days old) by KirbyCollector (Columbus Ohio USA)        

kirbycollector's profile picture

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