Thread Number: 19614
Reviving Dustbuster Talk
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Post# 218077   2/8/2013 at 00:11 (2,477 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

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I'm wondering if you folks still have any of your vintage Black & Decker Dustbusters from 1979 to 1985?

What I am talking about is the classic 1979 design Dustbuster. These were the model #s with the ribbed switch:
Model 9330 Dustbuster = cream color, 3-cell (3.6 volt) battery
Model 9333 Dustbuster Plus = coffee brown color, 5-cell (6.0 volt) battery
Model 9510 CarVac = blue color (1980-83) or black color (1983+), 12-volt DC power

Sears also sold this design as:
Model 900.178320 (9-17832) Cordless Vac (circa 1980-85) (3-cell battery)
Model 900.178330 (9-17833) Cordless Vac Plus (circa 1982-85) (5-cell battery)
(Yes, the Sears models retained the original respective trim colors of the B&D originals)



Post# 218078 , Reply# 1   2/8/2013 at 00:12 (2,477 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
Sears 17832 Cordless Vac

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Here's the Sears version of the 9330 Dustbuster (3-cell battery).


CLICK HERE TO GO TO KirbyClassicIII's LINK on eBay

Post# 218079 , Reply# 2   2/8/2013 at 00:13 (2,477 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
9333 Dustbuster Plus

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With original box and replacement bags.


CLICK HERE TO GO TO KirbyClassicIII's LINK on eBay

Post# 218080 , Reply# 3   2/8/2013 at 00:21 (2,477 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
Dustbuster Slideshow

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If you go to page 8 of 11 of this slideshow, you will see a rare version of the 1st-gen 9330 where on the nozzle it reads "B&D Duster" ("Duster" is in a very large type) instead of "Dustbuster."



Post# 218090 , Reply# 4   2/8/2013 at 03:50 (2,476 days old) by madabouthoovers ()        

I doubt many will have a dustbuster older than about 10 years that's still in good working order, as most were thrown out whyen the rechargeable batteries failed to hold charge, which was usually about when they had been in use for 5-8 years. I have a CV1205 from about 2005 which is now on its last legs due to leakage on a rechargeable cell, so it only works on the lower setting, and slows down when switched through the leaking battery on the high setting.
The cost of buying spare batteries is prohibitive and no-one would have bothered taking the unit to bits to replace a battery pack, just buying a new unit instead.
This was the best idea for ensuring continual sales of these vacs - after all, if they lasted as long as Kirbys, who would ever buy a new one, and keep sales figures up?
The Dustbuster, and indeed most cordless tools with built in rechargeable battery packs that the unit had to be taken to bits to replace, had true built in obsolescence, so that's why so few of them survive today.

My two Dustbusters:

Post# 218105 , Reply# 5   2/8/2013 at 07:15 (2,476 days old) by jmurray01 (Scotland)        

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Indeed Steve, that is the problem with collecting battery powered handheld vacuums.

I have an old Woolworths wet & dry handheld but at about 10 years old (I'd estimate) the battery is pretty much toast now only working for about 5 minutes before losing power.

If you want a handheld vacuum cleaner that will last years and years you have to buy a mains powered one like the Hoover Dustette. Heck, my 1951 Dustette is still going like the day it came out of the box (which I have) even at 62 years of age.

But let us not deviate from the original topic which is Dustbusters, not Hoovers!!

Post# 218128 , Reply# 6   2/8/2013 at 09:31 (2,476 days old) by jfalberti (Visalia, CA)        
I never had a Dustbuster,

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But I do have a Flex. It's great except for run time on a charge, and recharge time.

Post# 218170 , Reply# 7   2/8/2013 at 15:45 (2,476 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        

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I forgot to mention that Sears had earlier given their first "Cordless Vac" the catalog # of 9-1752 (model #900.175200) which I believe was early on in the run, switching to #9-17832 late in the 1st-gen game.

For 1986, Black & Decker overhauled its Dustbuster line. The Dustbuster Plus version, which now has a much darker shade of its trademark coffee brown color, lost one cell from its battery pack (from 6.0 volts to 4.8 volts). The exhaust ports were also removed. A year later, Black & Decker introduced the Dustbuster Plus Power Brush which used a turbine brush nozzle that attached to the main nozzle (#9338).

The third-gen Dustbuster appeared in 1990 in the form of the PowerPro DB4000, the Plus version being the DB5000.


Post# 218191 , Reply# 8   2/8/2013 at 19:07 (2,476 days old) by KirbyClassicIII (Milwaukie, Oregon)        
Sears Cordless Vac Plus

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After you click the attached link, look at the item marked "4" on this page from the 1986 Sears Wish Book.



Post# 297888 , Reply# 9   9/10/2014 at 14:25 (1,897 days old) by ronni (USA)        

STANLEY BLACK & DECKER INFORMATION (gleaned from its website) ...

In 1843, Frederick Stanley started a small shop in New Britain, Connecticut, to manufacture bolts, hinges, and other hardware from wrought iron. With superior quality, consistent innovation, and rigorous operational improvement, Stanley’s company defined excellence, and so did his products.

In 1910, S. Duncan Black and Alonzo G. Decker started their shop, similar in size at first, in Baltimore, Maryland. Six years later they changed the world by obtaining the world’s first patent for a portable power tool, and the company they built has been changing the world ever since.

Both companies grew in parallel over the ensuing decades, amassing an unparalleled family of brands and products and an even more impressive wealth of industry expertise.

In 2010, the two companies combined to form Stanley Black & Decker, to deliver the tools and solutions that industrial companies, professionals, and consumers count on to be successful when it really matters.



The U.S. Space Program, the inevitable give and take between husbands and wives, and good old American ingenuity all contributed to the birth of the iconic DUSTBUSTER™ hand vacuum.

In the mid-1970s, Black & Decker unveiled its Mod 4 cordless power tool system, a set of tools intended for heavy use in garages and workshops. This set included a lightweight cordless hand vacuum that wives frequently borrowed from their husbands' workbenches to clean up small spills in the home.

A light bulb went off at Black & Decker and a new product team was quickly assembled.

The team was headed up by noted industrial designer Carroll Gantz who got right to work on reinventing the Mod 4 hand vacuum for home use.

Gantz believed that this new hand vac should look and function like a dustpan does, quickly collecting dust and debris for easy disposal. From this idea, the shape of the vacuum was designed to resemble the side-view of a dustpan, with a flat wedge shape and a handle. This visually conveyed the idea of a quick and easy solution to small spills.

Next, Gantz and his team addressed battery and recharging issues. The technology that allowed for new battery packs and cordless functionality in household products came from research that Black & Decker did for the NASA Apollo 15 Space Mission in 1971. This research brought effective cordless products to the consumer market, including the DUSTBUSTER™ in 1979.

Since homes typically didn’t have electrical outlets in storage closets, the charger base for the DUSTBUSTER™ would be in plain sight near an outlet. This meant that the charger should visually suggest a “home” to which the hand vac could easily be returned after use.

For this, Gantz found inspiration in the simplicity and lines of a 1965 Trimline® telephone and the modern DUSTBUSTER started to take shape. A handset would “nest” into a charging base. A pistol grip would make the vac comfortable to use and a traditional dustpan shape would allow it to get into tight spaces.

Now all that was needed was a product name. Many were considered but the winning moniker came from an internal naming contest within Black & Decker itself. The DUSTBUSTER™ was unveiled at the August 1978 Hardware Show in Chicago. It was an enormous hit and was chosen as the “Best New Product in Show.”

The DUSTBUSTER™ has gone on to become the best selling product in the Black & Decker line, revolutionizing home cleaning along the way and even earning itself a place in the Smithsonian Institution.

The DUSTBUSTER™ has been redesigned many times over the years in order to continuously make cleaning quicker and easier. In 2006, for example, the DUSTBUSTER was revamped to include an 18 Volt battery – a vast improvement in performance from the original 3.6 Volt model – and a pivoting nozzle, making it the most innovative and powerful DUSTBUSTER™ ever (model # PHV1800CB). Improvements such as this have resulted in sales of more than 100 million DUSTBUSTER™ handheld vacs to date.

Clearly, the DUSTBUSTER™’s impact has been significant and widespread. The years have brought competitors, inferior rivals, wanna-be’s, and knockoffs. Yet through it all, the trusted DUSTBUSTER™ brand and reputation have endured.


Here are a couple screen shots from the 1988 movie THE NAKED GUN: FROM THE FILES OF POLICE SQUAD! featuring vintage vacuum cleaners. The first appears to show a Dustbuster™ (not sure if it's a clone) and the second appears to be a Eureka.

I have also included a couple eBay snap shots of Black & Decker's Mod4 System manual covers and a 1965 Trimline® phone referenced in its Dustbuster™ overview above. The Mod4, IMHO, resembles the versatility of Kirby's Handi-Butler and Electrolux Corporation's Turbotool (sold with Models late AE, F, S, R & early G).

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