Thread Number: 13236
FINALLY, a New Vacuum
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Post# 140840   6/24/2011 at 21:51 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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Today was a big thrifting day. My grandpa and I went over to a grand opening of a new Goodwill in Mesa. The store was packed. They had a radio station booth and people were passing out ads. There were almost no park spots, and this is in a large shopping center. I have never been in a store this packed. As we make squeeze our way to the electric area, I see a new early-2000s Hoover Bagless. For those you don't know, it's basically a Hoover Soft-Guard with a Twin-Chamber dust cup. It was in great shape and had a new brush roll. $20. I pulled it around the store but realized I'd have to buy a new filter and if I didn't like it I couldn't sell it easly, or make any money. So I left it. Plus the lines were insane. I've always wanted the purple version, but this was the more popular green model, so I'm not disappointed. We stopped into a record store next door and headed home.

After we eat lunch, we went out to our favorite thrift store and found no vacuums. My grandpa wanted to get a $15 current-model Hoover Floormate to clean his floors, but the brushes were too dirty for me. The filter needed to be replaced as well. We didn't want to spend money on that. He found a Sony dual-deck Cassette player there though, so not terrible.

Next we made our way over to a Goodwill there my grandpa has found alot of records, so we keep that store high on our list. There was an 80s Panasonic Jet-Flow that I thought about buying. $10. It had these spinning brushes to edge-clean that I thought was cool. But the bag was stuffed and smelled like a cat had thrown-up in it so I didn't even turn it on. Plus it was extremely similar to my Riccar 8000s series, so that finished my interest in it.

Last Goodwill before going back home. I've found one Eureka there a year ago, that I regret selling, but we check back 'just in case'. And I'm so glad we did! My grandpa started to look at the electronics while I went to the vacuums. There were the regular Chinese/Mexico Wal-Mart vacs there, but one thing caught my eye. A KIRBY TRADITION! I showed my grandpa and he was also impressed. We plugged it in and it sounds perfect. My grandpa even said while explaining the purchase to my mom that the sound of the motor is like listing to music. So I got it. I'm so glad I passed on the two other vacuums!

This is my first thrift store find, and vintage vacuum find, since February. Even more amazing is that even store had vacuums worth thinking about, and at reasonable prices. Most of time there is nothing, although I have passed on things recently like a Eureka 1934a that I should have bought.

Post# 140841 , Reply# 1   6/24/2011 at 21:54 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
Kirby: The Way I Found It

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This Tradition is very special from what I've seen before. Two things are nice about it. The first is the original, with Kirby's older logo. The other is that the bag had a fill-tube for disposable bags. I think the bag setup is original but I'm unsure. Are finding these features rare?

Post# 140844 , Reply# 2   6/24/2011 at 21:57 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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The reason I question on originality of bag is because of the zipper. I've never seen a Tradition with these bag. In the picture you can see a flap that says Kirby, so this is a Kirby part.

Post# 140845 , Reply# 3   6/24/2011 at 21:58 (4,625 days old) by vacman117 (Chicago, IL)        

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If I'm not mistaken, every Tradition was equipped with a fill-tube to use disposable bags with. This was the first Kirby to feature a disposable bag system.


Post# 140848 , Reply# 4   6/24/2011 at 22:02 (4,625 days old) by twocvbloke ()        

It's not rare unless it's anodised in a gold colour and has brown trim... :)

The disposable bag setup was pretty common, but doesn't work very well (filltube's too narrow), and the logo was used even into the G series on cast parts (plastic and metal), so, it's a standard Tradition, what IS rare is that the past owners haven't replaced the bag with an F&G setup... :)

Looks pretty good, needs a clean & polish, bit is otherwise a nice example, the Trad's my favourite model... :)

Post# 140849 , Reply# 5   6/24/2011 at 22:03 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
Fill-Tube and Bag

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Although there was an almost empty bag, I did dump out the Em-Tor and found a huge amount of green lint, dog hair and grit that did not make it to the bag. I took a picture but it somehow got deleted, but the dirt was stuffed up the fill tube and the motor still sounded normal. That's the durability of a Kirby! Let see a Dyson do that!

I really like the bag docking system. Very nice and I like it better than Oreck's.

Post# 140850 , Reply# 6   6/24/2011 at 22:03 (4,625 days old) by twocvbloke ()        

Just a note, there was a shake-out bag option, AND, if you pop out the filltube assembly, you can apparently use the full zip bag as a shake-out, not that I'd recommend it cos it could get messy... :)

Post# 140852 , Reply# 7   6/24/2011 at 22:04 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
Original Cord

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Very Nice.

Post# 140853 , Reply# 8   6/24/2011 at 22:08 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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I bought some polish and cleaned the Kirby up a bit. There and no more stains but I want it a bit better. You can a small improvement in this picture.

Post# 140855 , Reply# 9   6/24/2011 at 22:13 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        
Last Post

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There's a picture of the new Goodwill bar code sticker. I'm not sure if this a nation-wide thing but I don't like it. It makes the store seem more corporate.

I'd also like to remove to remove em-tor and bag so I can polish the em-tor and wash the bag, if it won't destroy the bag. The em-tor won't come off! Any suggestions?

Post# 140857 , Reply# 10   6/24/2011 at 22:26 (4,625 days old) by twocvbloke ()        
"The em-tor won't come off! Any suggestions? "

Pull harder, the springs on these bags are quite tight, so you need to give it some muscle to pull it off... :)

You might want to swap the emtor & filltube assembly for a more modern Mini-Emtor so you can improve the power (thus reducing clogs that the Trad bag setup suffers from), and use the white Polypropylene bags for better filtration... :)

Post# 140860 , Reply# 11   6/24/2011 at 22:50 (4,625 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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That might be a good idea. I'll call my local vacuum shop and ask them if they have a conversion. Or I can check eBay.

I don't know much about this model, but I thought most of the Traditions were shake-outs. Why would Kirby install a regular em-tor with a disposable bag?

Post# 140863 , Reply# 12   6/24/2011 at 22:56 (4,625 days old) by aeoliandave (Stratford Ontario Canada)        

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Word of warning!

Tradition bags bleed Blue Dye like a gored alien as soon as they hit the warm or worse - hot - water and I'm not talking a mere tint. It's more like a fountain pen ink cartridge or Bank Bag Dyepack exploded.

The best way to clean a Tradition bag is to vacuum the bejeezus out of it inside out, beat it against the rocks and leave it.

If you do decide to 'wash' it, fill the bathtub with COLD water, lay it down inside out without swishing it about, let it soak a few minutes lifting it out to drip as you change the water until the soaking produces no more brown water, then hang it wet - without wringing it damp - to dry outside on the clothesline. The color fade will be minimal.

There is a school of thought that washing a Kirby bag causes the doubleweave pores to shrink and the inner napped surface to felt. There is some truth to this but I have never found it to be particularly restrictive to airflow or fine powderdust accumulation as long as a proper paper inner bag is used...and of course one should never subject any vintage thick-napped vacuum bag to a washing machine's pounding agitation nor use a tumble dryer. That would be like doing the same thing to a new wool sweater.

If the bag is stained do not scrub-brush the spots vigourously as this will leave very noticeable faded patches where you scrubbed.


Post# 140864 , Reply# 13   6/24/2011 at 22:58 (4,625 days old) by thevacuumman (Borger, TX)        

They were still trying to figure out how they were going to use disposable bags on a kirby while giving people the option to switch it back to a shake out bag

Post# 140891 , Reply# 14   6/25/2011 at 08:24 (4,624 days old) by KirbyLover (Louisville Kentucky )        
Great find, I'm jealous!!

The Tradition is my favorite Kirby- years ago when i was a kid my dad did some janitorial work and I remember him using that machine. I thought it was the coolest looking thing and a real beast. It ended up in the tool shed to be forgotten. I dug it 20 years later somehow it ended up with a red shakeout bag on it (Classic III bag maybe?) and missing various parts.

I'd love to restore it, but adding up the parts that are on ebay would be $$$.

Regarding the bag, I have washed my G5, G3, and Heritage 84 bag by rinsing the dirt off with cold water (to not clog up the washing machine with junk) and then washing it on DELICATE with cold water, then hang to dry. I'm not sure but I think the H84 bag is a different material then the Tradition, so perhaps just vacuuming it as suggested would be the best thing to do. Maybe use and air compressor to really blow out the dust (wear a mask!)

Post# 140902 , Reply# 15   6/25/2011 at 11:55 (4,624 days old) by bagintheback (Flagstaff, Arizona)        

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I have washed a Heritage II bag with no problem, but I have heard horror storys with early Kirbys, so I wanted to make sure. I will not be putting the bag in the wash. Thanks everybody from telling me.

Post# 140913 , Reply# 16   6/25/2011 at 14:18 (4,624 days old) by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

It appears from the picture that the top fill hose has been changed to a larger hose than orginally was installed when the tradition came out. The original hose for the top fill was about the size of the hose used for vacuuming. It is part of the reason the Tradition model wasn't as efficent as later models.

The other was with the lexan fan. The traditionand older models didn't perform well with the lexan fans. I had a tradition at work and went to the shake out bag. Did perform better but not great. I have had the lexan fans on the classic and classic omega as well as the classic III. The performace wasn't what it was with the metal fans.

The reason for all the dirt in the sani emptor is there isn't a high swirl created in it. That is created in the mini emptors to blow all but the heaviest objects into the bag.

Post# 140916 , Reply# 17   6/25/2011 at 14:26 (4,624 days old) by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

If washing the bag you could also get the Rit color set additive Made by the same people that make Rit dye to set the color. Plain vinegar will also Set the color and minimize fading/bleading.

Cold water is the best and gental agitation. (IE hand wash) and air dry. A good vacuuming out or air cleaning with a compressor will make washing the bag much easier if washing is desired.

Products to prevent bleading of colors in natural fiber rugs are also available from professional carpet cleaning suppliers. Locally and on line.

Post# 140939 , Reply# 18   6/25/2011 at 16:50 (4,624 days old) by Red_October ()        

It's funny, my tradition has that exact setup; never had any problems with it. It's fascinating to learn about all the variations and the problems they caused, and their eventual solutions. I never knew there was a smaller interior hose!

Post# 140949 , Reply# 19   6/25/2011 at 18:56 (4,624 days old) by vac_whisperer ()        

NICE!!! The Tradition is my all time favorite Kirby. The blue perfectly compliments the chrome.

I took the bag off about 3 months ago and I still can't get it back on.

Anyways, that bag IS original. I dont beleive the cord is, though. But I could be wrong- Ill have to check.

Post# 140950 , Reply# 20   6/25/2011 at 19:59 (4,624 days old) by kirby519 (Wisconsin)        

At least at that good will store they didn't lable it as Old time Vacuum or old vacuum or antique like they do around here even if is a Sentria.

Yes there were to variations on the top fill hose as they found the smaller hose on the tradition caused loss of performance. The first Heritage models had a cloth top fill tube. It was made out of material similar to a heavy canvas tarp. That too didn't work out to well.

Trial and error fixed the probems.

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