Thread Number: 9408
Kirby Classic III
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Post# 103262   7/13/2010 at 18:23 (3,613 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        

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I've really taken to Kirby vacuum cleaners and have discovered some unrealized skills and abilities when it comes to rebuilding them. I've really enjoyed the ones I've done so far, and I'm especially proud of the fact that I've learned to service the motor (at least on a Legend II). Here's my next project. It's in OK shape and would vacuum alright save for one reason. The O ring seal on the fan case is gone, so the nozzle doesn't seal to the vacuum. Pretty much everything will be replaced. I'm going to try and find a Tradition handle since the cord winds on the left side of the handle, opposite from the bag. I don't know why it took Kirby so long to figure that one out! LOL! I'm perfecting my rebuilding skills on the post-500 models. After this one, I'll try my hand at a Model 500 series vacuum.

Post# 103270 , Reply# 1   7/13/2010 at 19:19 (3,613 days old) by swiveltop (Galveston, TX)        

You have done a fantastic job on all your machines, the Classic three looks good and you have the original bag, They switched the cord hooks on the later Classic Threes, I have two, one I bought for parts and it has the cord hooks on the right side, A Legend two handle would look great, I always thout the decal on the Three looked like an afterthought, like contact paper.

Post# 103271 , Reply# 2   7/13/2010 at 20:02 (3,613 days old) by sanimatic ()        

You did a great job. For comparison sake, here is mine that had a recent "treatment" at the local Kirby dealership. Not the complete rebuild, but just the local touch up. The bag is not original, but has been on this machine since 1991.

Post# 103272 , Reply# 3   7/13/2010 at 20:07 (3,613 days old) by sanimatic ()        

Uh oh. when I looked at your thread again, I realized you didn't do yours yet. It looks pretty good as is. Mine is in good shape, though not a hand lifted by me, so I was sharing only for comparison sake. I can't wait to see yours when you're done. Chris.

Post# 103274 , Reply# 4   7/13/2010 at 20:44 (3,613 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        

I always thout the decal on the Three looked like an afterthought, like contact paper.

Which indeed it is. It's heavy-weight sticky-back decal paper, for the handle cover as well as the logo on the belt lifter -- on all the Classics. You can - or used to be able to - get rebuild trim kits from Kirby for the Classic machines that included replacement decals for the handle and belt lifter.

Post# 103276 , Reply# 5   7/13/2010 at 21:17 (3,613 days old) by kirbykid63 (Wilmington Delaware)        
One of the best machines to rebuild

Kirby at its best the motors come apart and rebuild easy with all the parts available from Kirby or Hesco.


Post# 103284 , Reply# 6   7/13/2010 at 22:09 (3,613 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        
As luck would have it . . .

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I mentioned at church last Sunday that I had just finished rebuilding a Kirby vacuum to like-new condition. Sunday afternoon, three vacuums showed up on my door step -- a Model 515 and two Heritages, both with the ugly orange bag. So I started thinking, "I wonder if the Heritage and the Classic III use the same handle fork?" I just checked and voila! They are the same! Now I can just use a Heritage handle fork with the cord hooks on the left. Much more convenient!

Post# 103297 , Reply# 7   7/14/2010 at 00:08 (3,613 days old) by electrolux~137 ()        

would love to see photos of the 515s...

Post# 103307 , Reply# 8   7/14/2010 at 08:37 (3,613 days old) by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        

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Charles, I am headed to Colorado Springs this afternoon and will be back home Sunday night. I'll post a photo of the Model 515 on Monday. It's actually in pretty good shape. I think the bag on it is original, though the logo is worn and faded. I guess they screen printed those on? Also, the outer insulation on the cord is quite brittle and therefore needs to be replaced. But all in all, it's in good shape. The little lady who gave it to me seems to have taken good care of it. I'm a little worried about laundering the bag. When I rebuild it, I may just replace it with a black bag. I know it won't be as original, but I think it will look sharp beside the red trim. So I'm thinking I may just take the original bag off and do nothing to it in order to preserve it. BUT I really haven't had time to examine it closely either. So I'll figure that all out when I get back home.

Post# 103596 , Reply# 9   7/17/2010 at 22:48 (3,609 days old) by hygiene903 (Galion, OH)        
Nice Classic III's!

hygiene903's profile picture
Both great looking machines, and one of my favorite Kirbys, along with the D-50 and just about any of the of the 500 series. Here's my Classic III, complete except for the Handy Butler. It does have the later handle with the hooks on the left, and the Heritage II conversion bag.

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