Thread Number: 39246  /  Tag: Other Home Products or Autos
Flea markets, thrift stores and garage sales
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Post# 416384   11/23/2019 at 07:28 (1,471 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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Has anyone been going to these lately. I haven't had much luck with the thrift stores lately, especially Habitat, so I hadn't been going as much.

But we're back in the season here for the flea markets. I went to the two local ones last weekend and they were huge, no vacuums though.

There's also been more garage and estate sales lately, so I'll likely be trying to go to some of them.

Post# 416392 , Reply# 1   11/23/2019 at 11:19 (1,471 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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I don't think I've ever been to an estate sale and I have a negative feeling about flea markets since my dad used to drag us to the one at the state fairgrounds in Raleigh every Sunday after church so he could worship at the altar of junk. I despised walking around there in my Sunday clothes and especially in those uncomfortable Sunday shoes. But enough about my childhood trauma.

Thrift stores around here are quite hit-and-miss. I went a couple of years without seeing a single worthwhile vacuum cleaner and then earlier this fall, I found two at the same Goodwill store a few weeks apart, an early '80s vintage Sanitaire SC 686 and a Kirby Heritage 2 Legend for $10 and $15, respectively. Both in were exceptional condition for their age. The Sanitaire was missing a cord hook, the Kirby was missing its cord and of course both needed new belts. I've chronicled both of these finds in excruciating detail in other threads, so I won't rehash it further here. A few days before I bought the Sanitaire, I spotted a nice looking black and white Oreck, which I think was some sort of anniversary edition, for $10 at the Habitat ReStore but I walked away from it because it just wasn't something that appealed to me.

Of course, sometimes I see something good and I'm just not in the right mood to buy it, like the time I walked into Goodwill and saw a nice, shiny Kirby G5 and an equally shiny metal Royal upright with a matching burgundy bag right next to it for $19 each. They had to have come from the same person. I couldn't decide between them, even at that price, so I walked away from both of them and they were both gone the next day when I went back for the G5. But it's not like my floors are going un-vacuumed for lack of hardware. They're going un-vacuumed because I'm a slack-ass and would rather work on the machines than actually clean house.

Post# 416429 , Reply# 2   11/24/2019 at 14:35 (1,469 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

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I hadn't been to any for a long time.
I hit two thrift stores last weekend.
The only vintage vacuum I saw, I ended up buying. It has its own thread in vintage.
It's a 1950s Westinghouse Porta-Vac. No power cord, no hose, no attachments. Just the small metal canister. But it looked so cool, I love the color combination, and it's in great condition.
So, for $5, I had to buy it.
It's not a vacuum, but I also bought a Regal Poly Insta-Hot at the same store. I think that was $5 too.
I meant to get to a couple more stores this week, but my lazy-itis flared up.
We've lost most of our flea markets in the area.
There is one, maybe a half hour away, but I've yet to go check it out.
Again, I've been meaning to for a few years now.


Post# 416450 , Reply# 3   11/24/2019 at 22:00 (1,469 days old) by Hoover300 (Kentucky)        

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I have not been to my regulars in a while. The only thrift stores I have been to in the last couple months were an antique shop in Lexington, at which I found an antique folding cart, and a direct air Featherlite at ReStore. As there are no good thrift shops close to me, I try to go to Bee Garbage (recycling center) whenever I can. Most of my recent finds have either been from eBay or a very good vac shop over an hour away(some of which I have yet to post about).

Post# 416458 , Reply# 4   11/25/2019 at 01:21 (1,469 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

been to several in the last month+.

I saw a 2000s kenmore canister vac and at another place

a 1980 Electrolux Olympia Special with a newer plastic hose for $10. I've been back to that store a couple of times and it's still there.

Post# 416459 , Reply# 5   11/25/2019 at 02:07 (1,469 days old) by electrolux137 (Los Angeles)        
a 1980 Electrolux Olympia Special

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Does the Olympia Special have the brown plastic cord halo? If so, would you be willing to get the machine and send me just the halo and the cord? I've been looking for one for years! I'll pay your full purchase price + shipping. Thanks!

Post# 416464 , Reply# 6   11/25/2019 at 05:10 (1,469 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

I didn't look. It was standing on end so I couldn't see the end.

Next time I go, I'll look.

Post# 416515 , Reply# 7   11/26/2019 at 08:49 (1,468 days old) by suckolux (Yuba City, CA)        

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Have been to a couple places here pretty often, there is a pet resale store, which runs a dog rescue with the profits, I peruse their books pretty often,$1 or less, sometimes look at appliances, not normally much more than clothes there. We have a newer addition here, a resale store, they buy the returns, ect from Costco and probably other places, sometimes good prices, sometimes just retail. Got a few great deals there.

Post# 416519 , Reply# 8   11/26/2019 at 08:58 (1,468 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

It used to be that I wanted for so much new stuff.
Now it's all used stuff I want and there's so much and it's so inexpensive, there really isn't anything I need.
It's a cool feeling knowing you have a store credit card with no balance and you'd be hard pressed to spend anything there.

Post# 416758 , Reply# 9   11/30/2019 at 18:40 (1,463 days old) by huskyvacs (Gnaw Bone, Indiana)        

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I've still been having trouble finding vacuums at thrift stores. If I had a car, I'd do neighborhood watch and hunt for vacuums on trash night. I found a couple back in spring but none since. My last good Goodwill find was a Hoover Concept One back in October. I also found a Canadian-only Kenmore upright on eBay for 99 cents in a random 4AM auction. I had to pay about $30 in shipping due to customs but still was a good deal I think.

Post# 416896 , Reply# 10   12/3/2019 at 23:51 (1,460 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        
Charles- electrolux137

Checked that thrift store today, but the Olympia was gone.
Just several cordless stick vacs where it was.

They also had a blue Panasonic Jet-flow similar to this pic.
(I didn't have my camera, I guess I should be carrying that when shopping these places)

And a bissel green canister carpet cleaner and a shop vac.

  View Full Size
Post# 416901 , Reply# 11   12/4/2019 at 11:11 (1,460 days old) by electrolux137 (Los Angeles)        

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gregvacs28 Thanks for checking for me. I really appreciate it! laughing

Post# 417508 , Reply# 12   12/22/2019 at 13:07 (1,442 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        

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My thrift store is ran by the Mormon church. It's in the city of there prestigious BYU. They seem to always have a selection. Two weeks in a row the Kirby g4 $15 and riccar brilliance newer 11 amp model $10. It's hit or miss though. It has lots of dry spells. When class is in if you time it right you can get vacs before the students do.
The attachments for vacuums are never with the vacuum. I got electrolux floor polisher, d80 rug rennovator, tradition shampoo nozzle among others. I have gotten sentria 2 sentria and ultimate g shampoo system for $4-$10 each.
There is a vacuum shop that brings in it's. Trade ins I believe.
The all original 509 all original except bag and sentria with all accessories.
I visit the store alot. It's a place I find vacuums to sale.

Post# 418949 , Reply# 13   1/22/2020 at 14:57 (1,410 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
Although I RARELY go to them, (usually busy)

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I enjoy flea markets, antique stores, and ESTATE sales. It's amazing what you can find.
I always go to them when I make my annual trip to N Canton. Tom A. and I were at one once......furs, etc coming out of this fab home. I told him, "Well, I'm sure they had DELUXE tools". He almost hit the tree!
We were also at a sale, wearing HOOVER T-shirts. A man said to me, "Um, there are also some Dirt Devils over there".. Tom decided to move to the other side as I turned, pointed to my shirt, and said, "Really? Are you kidding me"? he replied, "Oops".
But, they are fun.

Post# 419015 , Reply# 14   1/23/2020 at 19:15 (1,409 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

My current fav thrift had a model G kirby last week for $10. A kenmore progressive canister and beat up hose only.

Went back yesterday, kirby  was gone.  Kenmore is still there.  I think they only want $6 for it.


They also had a hoover from the 80s with two switches on the handle.  

OK, i officially need to take my camera when I go....

Post# 419301 , Reply# 15   1/29/2020 at 21:53 (1,403 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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Our newspaper used to put the garage and estate sale listings online. A month or two ago they did away with it. So I'd have to get the newspaper in order to read them.

That has slowed me going to sales quite a bit, since I can't make up a route before I go. I have been going to a few sales the last few weekends that I was aware of though.

I can still get Estate sale listings on so that's mostly what I use now. Some of the best sales I've been to though, were not listed there.

Sometimes if I happen to see signs for sales on along the way to others, I'll stop by, or at least drive by and see if there's anything good.

Post# 420560 , Reply# 16   2/24/2020 at 21:54 (1,377 days old) by Jo (Dallas,TX)        

Here in Dallas I sometimes get to a goodwill or the habitat store, we also have a few other thrift stores. Picking up a vacuum at these stores can be very hit or miss and usually more of a miss. Most are worn out, filthy, and are big box store plastic junk that still sort of work. Most of the time Goodwill sells them for $21.99 and the stick vacs might be $14.99. A bit pricey if you ask me for someone’s used up vacuum that would need a complete clean out, maybe a belt or a bag or filter, not to mention some time to clean the whole thing out. In all my years of going to thrift stores I’ve only found two decent vacuums Aerus Lux Classic last May for $25.99 in pretty good lightly used shape but no small attachments or plastic wands or floor brush...only the canister, hose and power nozzle with its wand. Fortunately it had the vital parts and I had extras of everything else to make it a complete set.

In August I donated a very expensive range hood to habitat for humanity. On the counter at the register they had two packages of Aerus Home solutions “C” canister bags...I bought them for $5, a total of 47 bags. Went out to the car to go home and said to myself...”I should go back in and look around the store, there might be an Electrolux in there”...but doubted it. Sure enough in the back of the store near the appliances was a very nice light blue Aerus Lux Legacy with ALL original attachments and even an additional flip over rug and floor tool in addition to the regularly included floor brush. Everything was there. Even the sidekick II. I asked a store employee if I could try it and there was an extension cord nearby he said I could use. Everything worked great and I pondered if I really needed this vacuum seeing that I have several other Electrolux’s. There was a price sticker of $39.99 on it. I hemmed and hawed for a while on it thinking this is just nuts to buy it...and not being crazy about the plastic wand system I really was on the fence. I examined everything more closely for wear and everything seemed in really great shape and the power nozzle was barely used, only the one sided floor brush had normal wear on it, everything else was practically new and very, very clean. There was even a genuine Electrolux germ grabber bag installed in the machine. A woman came by while I was looking at it and asked what kind it was. I decided to take it and hauled it up to the counter and the guy rang it up with tax for a whole $22! I expected it to be $39.99 plus tax but then I realized appliances must be half off that day! I think the forces of the universe worked for me that day. I donated a new unused still in the sealed box Viking island hood and as a result gained a virtually new Aerus Lux Legacy.

My Brother needed a new vacuum so I decided to offer him the earlier Goodwill find Aerus Lux Classic. he likes the Electrolux Aerus products as well as that’s what we grew up with and he has had his adult life as well and one of his Electrolux’ Olympia special model was really on the fritz...a trash find, no cord end, a motor with worn bearings, and it was just beat to hell with a badly leaking non electric hose and no attachments, he had to use the attachments from his other Electrolux that resides on another level of his house when he would clean the upstairs so he was due for a replacement for his upstairs vacuum.

I think more and more vacuums are going to be appearing at thrift stores as people convert to the new stick vacuums like the shark rocket or the Dyson stick vacuum. I have a Shark rocket and honestly it’s the first Non Electrolux/Aerus machine I actually like just about as much and possibly more for some reasons than the Electrolux/Aerus. I think it’s that it’s powerful while having good attachments and also is a lot like using a canister but without the canister to drag behind. I’m not much of an upright fan because I have back issues so the weight of pushing an upright around is annoying and I also like to get into tight spaces with the vacuum and in our current house we mostly have hardwoods with a few small area rugs and a big upright is sort of useless for me.

Post# 420700 , Reply# 17   2/26/2020 at 21:15 (1,375 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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Nice find. I used to see newer Electrolux and Kirbys at the Goodwill here with pretty good prices but that was a few years ago. Lately everything is the bagless uprights or stick vacs. Most look to be in good condition but nothing I'm too interested in. Awhile ago there was a white Kenmore Progressive canister for $12.99 but it was missing the Pet Powermate cover and the attachments on the hose handle, and I already have two Kenmore canisters.

Another thrift store here gets in Kirbys pretty often but they're also expensive on things generally, especially small appliances. If a Kirby comes in they usually want $50 whether it's an older Classic, Heritage or a newer G3-G6 series. Last weekend I went and there were two Eureka Boss Lites that they wanted $20 each for, way too much!

Post# 422196 , Reply# 18   3/26/2020 at 01:05 (1,347 days old) by dartman (Portland OR)        

I don't go to thrift stores hardly ever and I try to avoid garage sales unless it's obvious they have stuff I like or can use. I'm trying to avoid my hording tendency but I keep saved searches for things I want on Craigslist and eBay. The Royals I have bought all came from Craigslist. I found a 4650 canister for 25 bucks with a bad wire in the powered hose, much later a Starks/Royal 5700 for free with extra bags and belts, and somewhat recently a monster 12 amp upright for 25 bucks pretty beat up but working. I bought a good hose setup for the 4650 on eBay for more than I paid for the vacuum and used it a while till the hose split but it still works taped up. The 5700 was pretty much good to go as is and I just cleaned up the powerhead and impeller, the other one I needed to rework it a bit and it needs some seals, the back wheel axle is bent but it now works very loudly. I certainly have enough vacuums to keep me busy between all the oldies and the modern robot and cordless stick vac I have now. Unfortunately I like everything including cars...

Post# 423905 , Reply# 19   4/21/2020 at 20:37 (1,320 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

These are stores i miss going to.

How will shopping at thrifts and Habitat look...... when ever in the future?

Really, I wish the thrifts would make an online website where all locations could log into and post their stuff and they would take pics of everything. This way it could sell world-wide and we wouldn't be inconvenienced with selective store hours or travel distances.

Not only that but some stores that become over stocked will throw good stuff out because they don't have the space. If they sold on line (and shipped) it wouldnt matter.

Post# 424082 , Reply# 20   4/23/2020 at 19:32 (1,318 days old) by Hoover300 (Kentucky)        

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I know some Goodwills do this, but won't ship most uprights. In fact I snagged a Premier Spic Span from the Shopgoodwill site a couple days ago. I am a little surprised they are still selling stuff even online due to the virus.

Post# 424091 , Reply# 21   4/23/2020 at 21:09 (1,318 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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I miss thrift stores, flea markets and garage sales too. I'd go to them at least two or three times a month.

I didn't know it but our Goodwill is still open, but with shorter hours. We're supposed to stay home, so I've been doing just that. Not likely I'd go to Goodwill right now anyway with second hand items around that could have the virus on them.

Earlier this month Habitat said their plan was to reopen in May. I was surprised, but we'll see.

If they open, I'll probably wait a bit but start going back again, carefully. I need something to do, some sort of normalcy. I don't think it would be reckless to go out sometimes, safely, to certain places if they reopen.

I don't want the virus, but I don't want to lose my mind over it either...

Post# 424092 , Reply# 22   4/23/2020 at 21:10 (1,318 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

Why would you be surprised they're selling online?

Premier Spic and Span vacuum? It would be interesting to see that. Please share.

Post# 424105 , Reply# 23   4/23/2020 at 22:24 (1,318 days old) by Hoover300 (Kentucky)        

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I am surprised as most non essential businesses in PA have been shut down. I am not sure if this is one of those no contact donation stores though, but it just seemed weird at the time that they would still be making sales.
As for the vac, it has not arrived yet but when it does I will make a thread. It is identical to the one below(not my video).

Post# 424130 , Reply# 24   4/24/2020 at 11:51 (1,318 days old) by gregvacs28 (U.S.)        

Wow, you found that, or something similar, at Goodwill.  Good for you.  It will be interesting to see it.  I hope it works well.

Post# 426913 , Reply# 25   6/14/2020 at 02:10 (1,267 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
These places are slowly

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This summer, I'll be making my yearly trip to N. Canton.
I'll stay with Tom A. and his wife, Heather A.
We'll visit Joellen and Dick P.
No trip would be complete w/o a visit to see Jane T.I'll also stop in a great vac shop owned by Ed S., a great place to stock up on real North Canton Hoover supplies.

Post# 426914 , Reply# 26   6/14/2020 at 02:17 (1,267 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
We go to wonderful places

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estate sales, thrift shops, etc. in N Canton.

Post# 427866 , Reply# 27   6/29/2020 at 11:56 (1,252 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
Can't save 'em all...

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So I finally broke down and visited a couple of thrift stores. The few vacuums on display were mostly plasticrap and pretty much beat down, although I did see a Kirby Sentria that at first looked to be in reasonably good shape for $25. The price was reasonable enough to entice me to take a second look but in the end, I decided to leave it behind.

First, the bag was jammed completely full, so full that it probably weighed seven or eight pounds and I was frankly afraid to unzip it for fear of what I would find inside. As I pulled the machine back and forth to listen for the telltale clicking noise of a failing TechDrive, I noticed the nozzle was dragging on the floor, so I raised it and discovered a wobble caused by a missing front wheel and stub axle on the height adjuster side. The brush roll was also in bad shape and the belt was off and probably broken but I didn't look closely enough to see for sure. And just to cap things off (pun intended), it was missing a hubcap from one of the rear wheels. At that point, I just pushed it back up against the wall and walked away.

Yeah, it was likely an easy fix and it would even have been a good buy as a parts donor, had I needed one, but I just didn't. Besides, I've already got a pristine Sentria, along with six other Kirbys. But being the good obsessive compulsive that I am, I did look up online to see how much the parts would cost to fix it and assuming nothing else is wrong with the machine, I would have ended up spending another $15-$20 on it so I'm just going to have to let that one be somebody else's project—that is, if I can get my mind to let go of it.

Post# 427890 , Reply# 28   6/29/2020 at 18:35 (1,251 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        
Walking away

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I had a "walking away" experience in a thrift store last week.
I don't collect Fire King, but I have a few pieces that are like ones from my childhood.
On a trip last week, I saw a set of four bowls; peach lustre or copper tint. I don't know my Fire King well enough to tell the difference.
We had the same ones back home, and Mom has no idea what happened to hers. These looked like they had never been used, and they only wanted $3.99 for the set of four.
Trying to be responsible, and not drag home stuff that I don't truly need, I walked away...and promptly began regretting it. Today, I gave in and went back to see if they were still there. No such luck.


Post# 427904 , Reply# 29   6/29/2020 at 20:54 (1,251 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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Yeah Barry, I know that feeling. I've had that happen to me many times. Last summer, I was visiting my mother and the senior living community where she lives has a little thrift shop that's open a couple of times a month. We went down there and she saw a floor lamp she liked but wasn't completely sure about it. By the time we got back to her apartment, she'd decided she wanted it and sent me back down there with some money to buy it but somebody else had beaten me to it. As they say on 'American Pickers', the time to buy something is when you first see it.

Of course, there are also those times when you go back and the item is still there. That's when you know it's meant to be. I had that happen with a Kirby Gsix one time. It was in beautiful shape and I just couldn't decide whether I really wanted it but I couldn't get it out of my mind so I went back a few hours later and it was still there. A couple was looking at it and as I walked up, the wife decided without plugging it in and properly trying it out that it was "too heavy". What she also didn't realize is when I was there earlier, I'd mischievously left the Tech Drive engaged in the "D" position so she was pushing against that mechanism. As soon as they stepped away from it, I popped it in neutral, wheeled it to the front and didn't look back.

Post# 427911 , Reply# 30   6/29/2020 at 21:21 (1,251 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        
The time to buy something is when you first see it

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Yeah, I've had that happen to me a few times too. Usually though it was stuff that I wasn't really all that interested in.

Usually what gets me is the first time though, especially at garage/estate sales, and with fans.

Once I drove about 45 minutes because there was a fan in the photos of the ad for an estate sale I was interested in. It was still sitting there when I got there and I walked over to it, and I hear "hey that's not for sale, I'm buying it." So I drove that way for nothing.

At another sale I went to here in town I saw a bunch of fans with some other stuff in the house and one fan was one I'd been looking for, so I picked it up and looked it over. Then I hear a rude guy saying "that's all MY stuff" and he looked at me as if I was from another planet.

Ok, so I'm just magically supposed to know that, huh? No hold table, no nothing for me to know that this is all his stuff. I wanted to tell the guy he didn't need to be a jerk, but I'm not one to do that kind of stuff. Still deep down I wanted to ignore him and walk off with it anyway. Oh well, maybe he didn't have A/C and needed a lot of fans. Let it go.

What I really prefer is when estate sales have a table that you can put the stuff you want on, and there's none of that "hey all that's mine" crap.

At another sale I lucked out. There was too a fan I wanted in the pictures. Get there second day, see it right away and I think "yes, it's here!" Problem was not only was it there but a guy was looking at the price tag. I thought, "oh, no not again!" But he walks off and I ask him if he wanted it, and he said "no, I just wondered why it was written not for sale yet there was a price tag."

So after assuring me he didn't want it, I was able to get a rare fan!

Post# 427930 , Reply# 31   6/30/2020 at 12:22 (1,251 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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So I went to a thrift shop today that I hadn't visited since probably sometime last year and I had both a 'couldn't leave it behind' moment along with a 'gotta think about' it moment. The former was a leaded glass lamp shade, probably contemporary manufacture but a classic design, attractive in its simplicity. Sure, I would have loved something ornate with dagonflies but this one's cool in an arts-and-crafts sort of way. I've got an antique art nouveau lamp base down in the barn that I grabbed from my parents' basement when they were moving four years ago, with the idea of possibly finding such a shade to put on it. I'll post photos once I excavate the base and put the two pieces together. I'm not sure what, if any additional hardware I'll need. A decorative finial, maybe? The nice thing is if I ever find something I like better, the price of this one was cheap enough that I can upgrade without losing any sleep over it.

The latter was a set of Lenox TempurWare dishes in a pattern that matches some I've got that used to be my grandparents'. They're from the '70s and designed to go in the microwave. Ironically, the pieces I'm missing are missing from this set as well—the bowls. There are dinner plates, salad plates, coffee cups and saucers, a creamer and two sugar bowls but no cereal bowls. So for now I've got to do some thinking and come to a decision in the next day or two.

Post# 427932 , Reply# 32   6/30/2020 at 13:16 (1,251 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
It's happened to me as well.

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But, there was an antique coffee table in an antique mall. I was looking at this thing for a year!! I went back to find it 'reduced'.
My famous words, "Put it in the car".

Also, 2 yrs ago, in a very nice antique store, I spied a pair of Tiffany & Co. Christmas candle holders. I checked regularly. They sat there for over a year. Last time I went there, I said to a friend who went with me, "I DOUBT they'll still be there. But, IF they are..................."

They WERE!!!!!
Guess what??
They look great on my fireplace mantel.

Post# 427945 , Reply# 33   6/30/2020 at 23:04 (1,250 days old) by Lesinutah (Utah)        
No power nozzle

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I've been to three different thrift stores. Today for example; a newer Kenmore bagless cannister no power nozzle, 2000 era Kenmore no power nozzle no bag and needed new filters, early 80s Kenmore straight suction machine.
One of the others had a Kenmore/Panasonic hard floor cleaning brush and straight suction.
I seen about 4 dysons there usually high priced or broken plastic.
If any of the kenmore's had a power nozzle I would have bought in a heart beat.
There open getting better inventory but with my collection I'm becoming picky with what I buy.

Post# 427947 , Reply# 34   6/30/2020 at 23:11 (1,250 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

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I've seen next to nothing for vacuums lately. The most interesting one was a Eureka Rally that I saw a couple of weeks ago.


That's great that the items you were undecided about stuck around for so long.
They must have been meant to be yours!
The items I've walked away from lately were gone when I went back; even if it was the next day.


Nice finds!
I did it again. I talked myself out of a very old mixing bowl yesterday. Today, I went back to get it and it was gone. I did find a couple of Fire King bowls. Similar to, but not exactly like the ones I missed out on last time. Even though they weren't exactly what I wanted, I got them. Along with a Nestle sugar bowl to go with our globe mugs. A spare carafe for the 10 cup Braun coffee maker, and a complete 12 cup Braun coffee maker. Unlike my 10 cup, the 12 cup is made in Germany. It's the type with the rocker on/off switch, and a second switch for when you're making three cups or less.
I'm looking forward to playing with it! I certainly didn't need it. But for $4.99, I couldn't pass it up! Then, when I checked out, everything was 30% off.
I may go hit the Salvation Army store tomorrow. I haven't been there in a couple of weeks.


Post# 427951 , Reply# 35   7/1/2020 at 00:15 (1,250 days old) by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

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Garage sales suck nowadays. It's all clothes and household items. My mom used to take me to tons of garage sales when I was little. I mean every weekend during the season, maybe 10 to 20 sales in a day. And I mean it was an orchestrated event, she would make an itinerary beforehand and we'd go to them in order of which was closest to the next. I loved looking at other people's junk, but it also set me up to be an antiques collector, because in those days, antiques and vintage items were commonplace - and CHEAP. Like, I could buy stuff on a child's allowance. Now there's ebay and craigslist and offerup. And people see some old crap and think they have a gold mine, so they don't sell them at sales (or really at all with the insane prices people come up with, lol). It's a damn shame.

Also my mom would NOT go to estate sales, because she hated going into other people's houses.

My dad would, on far fewer occasions, take me to the Maxwell street flea market. That was a much different experience as it was mostly just walking around looking at crap. More of a journey vs destination type of thing. And even in those days, antiques were rare. Most of it was new retail items like clothes and small appliances (probably a lot of it that 'fell off a truck'), and the odd random used junk. Of course I did find a few gems there, like my Cadillac upright that I've had since I was about 12.

I will still pop in to sales whenever I see them, and on rare occasion if I happen to hear of one with stuff I might like. A while back, I caught wind of an estate sale with a 1950's TV in a beautiful wood cabinet. I figured they'd have a lot of old stuff, but when I got there, the tv was literally the only thing I was interested in, but not for $80, or thereabouts (which was already a very reasonable price, but I wasn't that interested in the tv). I inquired if they would have half price on sunday, and the guy talked me into buying the tv right then and there for $40. So that was nice. TV is still on my workbench. Maybe halfway done. Those are long-lasting projects. Took me like 5 years on my last vintage tv set.

A few weeks ago, my friend suggested we go out to some far away suburb for an estate sale - tbh, not even sure why, he doesn't really like that kind of thing. I said ok, at least it would be a fun waste of time. All the prices were marked WAY too high on everything. I saw a Hoover Concept One and a little 1970s-ish GE canister vac (with pretty much all the attachments), each marked $50. And really, I wasn't very interested at any price. I found some nice vintage electronics junk and other bits and bobs, and asked the guy about the vacs, I didn't haggle at all, he said $5 each. In fact, the actual prices were all extremely reasonable for estate sales, let alone compared to the ridiculous price stickers. So now I have two vacs that I really didn't need or want lol.

Post# 427962 , Reply# 36   7/1/2020 at 12:41 (1,250 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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When I was a kid we used to run all over town to yard/garage sales as well. I don't usually go to them anymore, unless it's a grouping of them or I happen to pass by one that looks good. A lot as you say have just clothes, and in my experience baby stuff and household knick knacks, etc. But sometimes they have good stuff.

Overall I have better luck at estate sales, but they don't usually have any vintage Hoovers, Eurekas or the sort of vacuums you might expect. Most have newer bagless uprights or newer Kirbys or Rainbows if they have good vacuums.

A few weeks ago I went to one near my house. It was way, way back in the woods (dirt roads and a long trail up to the house). It had two barns of stuff that was pretty interesting, but nothing I wanted. The ad said they had a Wii system. It was only $20 and I got a black console, remote with jacket a few games and all the original manuals. No cables, but I already have those. I figured $20 was a pretty good deal given the remotes go for about $10 and the consoles a little more. So now I have two remotes and some games.

Post# 427963 , Reply# 37   7/1/2020 at 12:44 (1,250 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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I have had the miss outs happen worst in antique shops! Several years ago I found two brass bladed fans at one (one a 6 wing which are very desirable). They were on sale for 50% off so $75 each which was a bargain. I didn't have enough cash so went back and they were gone. :(

Then more recently at another antique shop was an Emerson 1510 brass blader. Now those go for pretty good money and they only wanted $45. It was gone the next Monday. I figured nobody would buy it since that store gets such low traffic but somebody did.

Now I'll make sure to buy any good priced/desired fan right away.

Oh, and MadMan, can you post pics of your vacuum finds from that sale? I'd like to see the canister especially.

Post# 427973 , Reply# 38   7/1/2020 at 14:17 (1,250 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
I love estate sales!

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But, I feel badly when I see 'people' just rummaging through everything. These people are dead, and folks just plow through their once beloved 'stuff', ripping a household apart.
I look at the scene and think, "this could/probably happen when I'm gone". People will just tear through all of the things I worked so hard for, use, and enjoyed.

Post# 427975 , Reply# 39   7/1/2020 at 15:21 (1,250 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
I exercised restraint...

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So I went back to the thrift shop where the Lenox Temper Ware dishes were and while I was tempted to buy the whole lot, I exercised extreme restraint and only bought six of the twelve dinner plates and six of the seventeen bread plates. As I was looking at them, I began asking myself what I actually use of the pieces I've got and how much more of it I could reasonably use. I never use the coffee cups and saucers so there was no need to buy more of those, ditto for the two sugar dishes and the creamer. I still want to find some of the cereal bowls, though.

Post# 427984 , Reply# 40   7/1/2020 at 19:58 (1,249 days old) by Turbo360 (North TX)        

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I went to our local thrift store and picked up an Electrolux epic 3500 SR And a Electrolux prolux 2000 commercial upright Both are in good condition just needs some cosmetic care. These are my new favorite vacuums. The 3500 SR will be used as my daily driver and I will use the pro lux to clean other peoples homes. ( everybody knows me in the neighborhood so they want me to vacuum their house :) )

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Post# 427986 , Reply# 41   7/1/2020 at 20:56 (1,249 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
Nice haul!

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I love the Electrolux uprights. I've turned my cleaning lady into a fan also.

Post# 428055 , Reply# 42   7/3/2020 at 02:29 (1,248 days old) by MadMan (Chicago, IL, USA)        

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@fan-of-fans The GE has most of the attachments. Two floor nozzles, the floor nozzle extension wands, a dusting brush, a little upholstery nozzle, and even a couple extra metal tube things that I can't quite figure out. One of them is meant to be a hose end, but the part that fits in the hose is different than the actual hose ends. The hose is crap, I'll either replace it or cut the bad ends off. Haven't actually powered it up yet. The cloth bag wasn't all that full. It's an odd color. It's also very dirty. I'm sure it'll look nice after a bath. Might have to buff the plastic stuff.

The Hoover seems to run fine, but it needs belts and the power drive will need some kind of work. The lever that 'shifts' the transmission does not move easily. Haven't opened it up yet, I want to record it for youtube, but I don't have my tripod. When I was at the estate sale, I saw some random vacuum hose and attachment - I thought I would use the hose to replace the one on the GE canister. I found out later that I had unknowingly picked up the hose converter for the Hoover lol. It's weird, the Hoover looks very well used, but the hose converter looks legitimately brand new. So I have only the converter, hose, and like one extension. Apparently the tools are weird - they have a locking ring to hold them in place.

Also, I'm not really attached to either of these in case you're interested.

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Post# 428109 , Reply# 43   7/3/2020 at 23:08 (1,247 days old) by rivstg1 (colorado springs)        

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I've shown great restraint too during this time...haha. also cause I have most of what I want....I keep an eye out though for hidden treasures.... love going to estate sales....its the hunt for things right? I got a couple just 3 days ago which I'll post about soon

Post# 428244 , Reply# 44   7/7/2020 at 09:54 (1,244 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
Walked away from an Epic find...

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So I went to a thrift shop yesterday and ended up walking away from an Electrolux Epic 3500 upright. It had apparently just been put out on the floor and hadn't yet received a price tag. It seemed to be in nice shape, although a bit dirty. I was sorely tempted to inquire about it but I just couldn't justify it. I've acquired five vacuum cleaners in the past year and I've only parted with one for s 20 percent net increase in inventory. In a way, I'm kind of glad I was able to be strong and resist the temptation but frankly, I don't have anywhere to put another vacuum cleaner.

Post# 428255 , Reply# 45   7/7/2020 at 13:30 (1,244 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
Updated and Superceded...

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The link below will take you to the proverbial 'rest of the story'.


Post# 428257 , Reply# 46   7/7/2020 at 14:10 (1,244 days old) by texaskirbyguy (Plano, TX)        

I love going to thrift stores and antique stores and I go quite frequently. Like panning for gold, I am always in search of a Holy Grail for either myself or my ladyfriend. Every now and then I find one. Sometimes I find kind-of-one. Often none at all. During a blue moon in a late-autumn gale, I find many.
The latter happened when an antique store was closing, to be demolished and replaced with apartments. One gal had a lot of vintage fans and she wanted me to get her 'out of the fan business'. And I did help her out a lot - I got 8 or so from her after negotiating a deal back in 2012, many were Emersons. I still enjoy them all!

When at thrift stores, something always follows me home. Much of it being stuff either one of us could enjoy or use. The rest would be nice-but-cheap clearance stuff that would be heading to the landfill or overseas for 'recycling' if not sold. Most of the latter is redonated to places I know will benefit from them or given away to friends if they want them. The rest we keep, despite us running out of room for stuff. It is usually all so cheap, we forget about our lack of space...

I only go to yard sales if I am passing right by and I see something from the road that I might like. Usually I do not get anything, but you never know. It has been years since I was at an estate sale, as I rarely pass by one. (Last one I went to was across the street, at the site of a double homicide..) I also feel a little bad about picking that (now deceased) person's past life apart, but I feel better about saving whatever I do get. I am sure that would have made him or her smile, to carry on a piece or more of their lives. Most remaining stuff is either sold online, donated, or trashed. This will happen when I die, as I will have no survivors if I make it to an older age. My estate will go to a non-profit of my choice. I do hope all my good stuff is saved to be enjoyed by someone else. Keeping it all clean and working will hopefully increase their chances at doing so...

My ladyfriend and I are actually in the process of making a 'dummies-type' book for thrift-storing. The below are some of the main points that are discussed in this thread...

Rule 1 - if you see something and have that gut feeling on wanting it, get it then and there if the price is right. Trust your gut, as most times you will dwell on it, end up going back for it, and it will no longer be there. If it is there, you might be inclined to look around some more and get more stuff you do not need. Consider the fuel and time spent also if you were to go back.

I broke this rule early this year when I saw a pair of nice Rat-Shack Nova 7 speakers at the local Goodwill. There was no price and I did not want a set with rotted foam surrounds. I researched them when I got home and they were well-rated and had rubber surrounds. I went back to get them the next day, but they were gone. Live and learn...

I found a Sunbeam Radiant-Control toaster at another Goodwill a couple years back for 3.95. I actually yelled out over this one and grabbed it immediately. Hated to carry it around but it was worth it. I could have bought it then and put it in the truck if I did not want to carry it for long. I do not use carts as they are a pain to maneuver around and they can be taken or stuff taken from them. I am also a rapid shopper, just quick-scanning everything. If it grabs my eye in a flash, then it might be worth getting. If I go slowly, I will get too much of stuff that I will regret getting later.

Early this year I found a 1970's 12" Pioneer loudspeaker at a thrift store for $80 and it was 75% off furniture day. So for $20 it went home with me and it tested good. Being there was only one, I resold it (easily) for $100. If there was a pair or could not get my price, I would have kept them or this one.
It is better to get something you think you want then miss it and regret it. At worst case you can clean it up and fix it and sell it, redonate it (hopefully to a known-good place), give to a friend, or pass it on to a collector.

Rule 2 - Do not avoid certain stores just because you did not find anything good the last time, or things looked 'dirty' or disorganized, or you did not like their prices. It is a true treasure hunt and stock changes daily. After a month or two, there should be an almost all-new selection at thrift stores. Most of them get rid of stuff after a certain time - note the use of tag colors or date codes or week numbers on tags.
Pricing will often be done be different people, and if things do not sell after x amount of weeks, they may get reduced.
Learn the sale protocols for each store and use them to your advantage. Most base them on the date the stuff comes in. Also there may be big sales during holidays or weekends. Some have 'half-price Wednesdays' or similar sales. However, if you really want something particular, it might be better to get it then while it is available. Vintage stuff is really hit or miss, some near un-obtainium.

Rule 3 - look past the surface dirt, grime, and dust. Often a good cleaning will make old stuff look new again. Most people 'gross-out' when they see something dirty and that is what sends most old stuff to the dump. Also understand that some things may not work 100%. If you are handy, have some fun and fix it. Many problems are minor. Some items are so cool-looking that even if I cannot get them to work, they are still worth keeping just to look at.

Most of all, have fun!!

Post# 428264 , Reply# 47   7/7/2020 at 15:48 (1,243 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
You NEVER really know what awaits us at these shops., etc.

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Yes, a little rub with a cloth, (OK, maybe a total scrubbing), etc.'s great to 'find' something on our 'list', isn't it?

Post# 432091 , Reply# 48   9/19/2020 at 15:47 (1,169 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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There have been estate and garage sales happening here and there. The thing is estate sales often start on Thursday or Friday and then run through Saturday or Sunday. Usually they don't start until 8 AM so I'm already at work. So by Saturday when I can go they're either already open for at minimum a day.

Last weekend I went to one and there was literally nothing left except some free items outside. It was a neat mid century house to see though. A lot of the sales I just like to go to see the houses if nothing else.

Sometimes I get over to sales on my lunch break if they're close enough. Other times it would be too far to be worth it.

My old job used to start at 9AM so many times I could go to the sales before work if they happened to be on the way there.

Yard/garage sales I don't bother much with unless I happen to be passing by, and even then I often won't stop if I don't see much. But there could be a hidden gem under a table.

Overall I don't find much at estate/garage sales as far as vintage vacs go. They either have newer bagless stuff or just things that don't interest me. I wish it was easier to find old metal Hoovers, Eurekas, Kenmores, GEs, etc. But they just don't seem to be around, even out in the garages or barns. And they rarely if ever turn up in thrifts these days.

It's starting to get back into the flea market season though, so we'll see. I might make a stop at the one here tomorrow and see if there's much there. At least it's outdoors so I don't think coronavirus will be a hinderance hopefully this year.

Post# 432092 , Reply# 49   9/19/2020 at 16:43 (1,169 days old) by huskyvacs (Gnaw Bone, Indiana)        

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I've had a really dry summer finding vacuums this summer. But usually when I do not find a vacuum, I usually find random packages of belts and bags, so that helps anyway.

I need to start digging around the dumpsters of local vacuum shops just before trash pickup and see what they toss out.

Post# 432111 , Reply# 50   9/20/2020 at 01:14 (1,169 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Make friends with the owners of your local vac shop---then you don't have to paw thru the dumpster for goodies.Just tell the shop operator what you are looking for and the shop will save it for you!This works well for the place I go to-and he even saves sewing machines,too!Sometimes-as with out here vac shops share dumpsters with other places-the vac shop here shares the dumpster with a pizza place.I am sure you wouldn't want a vacuum covered in stale pizza fixings!And for my light collection got a MH wallpack light that was replaced with a LED light.The light I got needs a capacitor for the ballast to make it work right.Bulb wasn't going to full wattage-bad cap.

Post# 432326 , Reply# 51   9/23/2020 at 01:23 (1,166 days old) by huskyvacs (Gnaw Bone, Indiana)        

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Oh I wouldn't even know where to begin with what to ask. I'd probably end up with half the store at that rate. lol

Post# 432333 , Reply# 52   9/23/2020 at 08:14 (1,166 days old) by Brando_husky (Las Vegas Nevada)        

Same. I used to be friendly with some of the shops and get some of their old junk. Haven't been to a shop in Vegas yet though. 


Nice name by the way, huskyvacs. Hah 

Post# 432372 , Reply# 53   9/23/2020 at 17:23 (1,165 days old) by huskyvacs (Gnaw Bone, Indiana)        

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oh funny coincidence :D back at ya!

and yeah the shops here i just seen on google street view from 2019, i missed last year they put a bunch of vacs in their alley with a "free" sign on them.

Post# 447686 , Reply# 54   11/6/2021 at 19:07 (756 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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I haven't seen many vacuums at the thrift stores here lately (mostly just modern cheapos if any).

This morning I saw a sign for an estate sale. There were three uprights, a green Eureka Optima, a yellow bagless Eureka, and a Fantom Fury.

They said make an offer and the Fantom was tempting because I never really see them here (I think this is the fourth one I've EVER seen in person). But it was rather scuffed and dusty and it looked like all the tools were missing.

I kind of wanted it, but I have too many uprights right now and various projects so I don't really have anywhere to put it.

Post# 447750 , Reply# 55   11/9/2021 at 18:40 (753 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
Can't Save Them All...

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fan-of-fans wrote:
I kind of wanted it, but I have too many uprights right now and various projects so I don't really have anywhere to put it.

I reply:
I found myself in that same position today. I walked through a thrift shop where I'd found a Kirby G6 a couple of weeks ago and they had a somewhat forlorn looking Kirby Sentria for $10. It was missing the N/D pedal, needed a belt, and the bag was torn. It had an absolutely full bag that felt just solid. It looked like it had been used to clean up sawdust. My heart really did go out to it and I really wanted to take it home with me and make it better but I've got 13 Kirbys right now, two of which I've just recently acquired. I just couldn't justify it, even with my 10 percent educator discount, which would have brought the cost down to $9. Under different circumstances, I would have felt lucky to have rescued it but today was not that day.

Post# 447793 , Reply# 56   11/12/2021 at 20:37 (750 days old) by fan-of-fans (USA)        

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Same here. Although I have really backed out of acquiring any more vacuums. It's been somewhat easy because there haven't been any of interest in the thrift stores. Not only that, but for some reason there just haven't been a lot of garage or estate sales here lately. There were quite a lot last year and this past spring, but this summer was kind of a dud.

I'm still hoping to have my own home someday so my collection can have its proper space. But for various reasons that has had to go on hold.

I did get quite a few more vacuums this past year however than I usually would, so that has also gotten things kind of out of hand. I have a Hoover Convertible I got late last year or early this year that I haven't gotten around to finishing up either, despite buying a new fan for it.

Post# 447801 , Reply# 57   11/13/2021 at 00:19 (750 days old) by rivstg1 (colorado springs)        

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i dont have the 'bug' like i used to have for vacs and its kinda good....b/c from what I've noticed in my estate sale and thrift store and even FB marketplace hunting....everything is much more expensive or just nothing that lights my fire. I'm glad I got everything in the past 3 years!

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