Thread Number: 35908  /  Tag: 50s/60s/70s Vacuum Cleaners
10 years ago. My very 1st Kirby!
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Post# 385179   2/1/2018 at 09:29 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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Hi everyone! Well I havenít get to this post for a while because Iíve been busy and stuff and I actually meant to do this post on my birthday, January 24th. Well for all of you Kirby lovers out there, I would love to show you my first Kirby vacuum, the model 517 from 1957. As of right now this is my oldest vacuum in my collection! So we actually go back 11 yrs. It was September 2007, during my 1st year at junior high, and my teacher discovered my interest on vacuums and she told me that she has an old Kirby vacuum and she was happy to bring it. So she brought her Kirby to the class room along with the attachments too! I plugged it in and it was amazing! It wasnít that loud at all and I even used the attachments and it was fun! So onwards to January 24, 2008, my 12th birthday, my teacher decided to give me her Kirby 517 as a present because she had a Hoover windtunnel as her daily driver. 10 years later that day was a day to remember! And another thing as you may noticed the parts are from either a Sanitronic VII or a Dual Sanitronic 50, because the vacuum was rebuild in September 1996. So enjoy this pics!

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Post# 385180 , Reply# 1   2/1/2018 at 09:30 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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This is the only original part for this vacuum, the belt lifter.

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Post# 385181 , Reply# 2   2/1/2018 at 09:31 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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The fan. Still in good shape!

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Post# 385182 , Reply# 3   2/1/2018 at 09:32 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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Post# 385183 , Reply# 4   2/1/2018 at 09:35 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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This used to have the original 2 row brushroll but it was getting worn so in 2014 I finally got a new 4 row brushroll and it works great still!

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Post# 385184 , Reply# 5   2/1/2018 at 09:45 (260 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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Hereís the attachments that came with the Kirby. Itís in good shape but I would love to get a new set of Kirby attachments and a stretch hose attachment for my 2 Kirbys and future ones.

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Post# 385207 , Reply# 6   2/1/2018 at 18:41 (260 days old) by texaskirbyguy (Plano, TX)        

Very nice machine and great memories for sure! That one is a keeper!
I noticed the fan in not original and looks to be a grey lexan one. These are known to develop cracks from age (deterioration) and stress. Therefore do not be surprised if it grenades on you without warning, as it is a common issue with these. A new cream-colored Amodal fan can easily be had for cheap should it need replacement. If you choose to do an all out restoration on the machine, change the fan should it stay intact to that point.
Take care of that belt lifter, as they are getting hard to find. Use the softer Kirby belts to reduce stress on the plastic when rotating it.
Most of all, enjoy using it!

Post# 385223 , Reply# 7   2/1/2018 at 23:20 (259 days old) by Gj3476 (Dallas,TX)        

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Oh donít worry texaskirbyguy, this vacuum was meant to be built for last! Nothing on this vacuum has never been broken at all ever since Iíve got it! But one day I would love to find the original red and gray parts like the headlight trim, handle, bag trim, and nozzle trim in red. Gray wheels, dirt tray, and cord. And I really love the shake out bag I would definitely keep that!

Post# 385284 , Reply# 8   2/2/2018 at 22:11 (258 days old) by texaskirbyguy (Plano, TX)        

Yes, Kirbys are built to last and be serviceable - no doubt about it.
However, the grey lexan fan was probably the most unreliable part ever used in their machines. Unfortunately it not a question of if it will fail, it is when. Age deteriorates the plastic and the centrifugal force of being spun at over 10,000 RPM causes it to fail dramatically. So when it does go, don't be too disappointed - it can be easily fixed. And since you are in the Dallas area I can help you do it if needed. I also have a few NOS red headlight trims should you decide to restore it. Unfortunately I do not have any of the other stuff you need but keep an eye on ebay - you never know what can come up.

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