• Report: #316088

Complaint Review: Kirby Vacuum Cleaner

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  • Submitted: Sat, March 08, 2008
  • Updated: Wed, October 27, 2010

  • Reported By:Slidell Louisiana
Kirby Vacuum Cleaner
www.kirby.com Slidell, Louisiana U.S.A.

Kirby Vacuum Cleaner This was a piece of JUNK for $1000 dollars! Owned less than 1 year, motor dead. Slidell Louisiana

*UPDATE Employee: just trying to help!

*Consumer Comment: Kirby Vacuum

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Probably no mud, just a bad vacuum.

*UPDATE Employee: i'm sorrry sales man didn't tell you

*Consumer Suggestion: Retard? From an employee??? WOW

*Consumer Comment: Kirbys are NOT Junk

*Consumer Comment: The heck with Kirby.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Also, Jenbeth...

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Sounds True

*UPDATE Employee: if you believe this report you are retarted.

*Author of original report: Kirby Vacuum Cleaner Yes, this one has the drive system

*Consumer Suggestion: In responce to the person above me

*UPDATE Employee: Why are you lying?

*Consumer Suggestion: Cord

*Author of original report: Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

*Author of original report: Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

*Author of original report: Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

*Author of original report: Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

*Consumer Suggestion: It's not your motor

*Author of original report: Update on responses.

*Consumer Comment: Nikki

*Consumer Comment: HAVE YOU BEEN VACCUMING MUD FROM KATRINA?????????????????

*Consumer Suggestion: What You Should Do

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I bought this vacuum thinking that even though it is $1000 it is worth it because it serves multiple purposes. The salesman stole my other vacuum that I owned. He said that he had to take it in trade. I was thinking I was getting a new vacuum so why would I need two. Boy was I wrong. It was SO HEAVY. After using it less than one week it became SO HEAVY I couldn't move it without a hand truck. I changed the bag and it was so difficult. Dust flew up in my face, it was a dirty trick. Then I called them back to try to return it and they told me that I had only three days to return it and it had been 5!!!

I felt like I was stuck with it, so I tried to make the best of it. The wheels do not roll unless it is ON, so that means that when you have to move it when it is OFF, You have to LIFT it. Like I said, I could only move it if I used a hand truck. I was using it to blow up my daughters inflatables and the INDESTRUCTIBLE nozzle on the inflating tool broke off! What a piece of garbage. Then probably six more months past, I had stopped using the Kirby vacuum and was very content to use my shop-vac since it sucked up mess so much more efficiently. One day I had back pain and didn't feel like doubling over to use the floor tool hose on the shop-vac so I got the hand truck and went and brought the monster into the master bedroom. I turned it on and POP! The motor DIED! I tried calling, and I tried writing and I haven't gotten a response.

I just want to throw the damn beast into the trash pile! It is an EVIL HEavy eye sore, that just makes me sick because it cost $1000!

DO NOT BUY A KIRBY VACUUM!!! ANY $88 WAL-MART BRAND IS BETTER!

Nikki
Slidell, Louisiana
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/08/2008 04:47 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Kirby-Vacuum-Cleaner/Slidell-Louisiana-70461/Kirby-Vacuum-Cleaner-This-was-a-piece-of-JUNK-for-1000-dollars-Owned-less-than-1-year-m-316088. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 23Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 UPDATE Employee

just trying to help!

AUTHOR: Alex - (U.S.A.)

as a contractor for this company, though many states away, i feel bad that you have been mistreated... The truth is that there are many Kirby franchises worldwide, and though many are run very well, and in good standing with the BBB and the Dept, of labor (as my office is), it seems that some obviously are not.  What the distributor should have done for you, (if you weren't able to return it due to being past legal cancellation) was send a rep out to your home to assist you with your new machine, as its obvious his/her rep that made the initial sale to you was either new or careless in providing you with a proper "after sale demo" After being with this company for nearly a decade, my best advice under the circumstances is to call the Kirby Company Headquarters in OH, Customer Relations' department at 1-800-494-8586 or by email at consumer@kirbywhq.com. they are open 8:00AM - 5:30PM EST Mon-Fri


As for the trouble using your kirby, the correct feedback above seems accurate. To roll the machine while off, it should be in neutral, and a blue flash before the machine stopped working could indicate a power cord issue. They are very easy to change and should only run about $25-$35, purchase from the Kirby Company and utilze a "youtube" video (or similar site) to put it on.


As far as the inflator nozzle being broken, usually it can take some abuse, but i once broke one accidentally (trying to use it to lift the latch that locks the powerhead)(not super intelligent I know :) but they only cost about $4 to replace


If the Kirby seems heavier too lift than when you bought it-you probably just need to replace the bag (as stated before in previous post-however QUITE RUDELY) If you have trouble lifting the Kirby by the handles, use both hands and lift byt the low handle and the cover under the headlight, this distributes the weight more evenly.


All in all the Kirby is a wonderfull machine, and though yes, very expensive, with regular use will save thousands or more by protecting your investments. 


To those who reply to posts so rudely-whether you work for the company, are a consumer, or aren't affiliated whatsoever- if you dont have anything constructive to say, why bother wasting your time typing? do you really have nothing better to do? or have you never been frustrated with a product before and felt the need to reach out for help? Try to be helpful, or keep your comments to yourself.    -just trying to help!

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#2 Consumer Comment

Kirby Vacuum

AUTHOR: Tim - (United States of America)

I have had a Kirby vacuum for the last  3 years.  It does everything the sales man said it would.  It is an expensive machine, but in my opinion well worth the investment.  I will agree that it is extremely heavy, to lift, but easy to push whether the power is on or off, only time its hard to push is if the power is off and the drive switch is on D not N, that was the first thing the salesman said, if its off, turn the drive switch to N.

As far as performance goes, I can't complain at all.  By far the best vacuum I have ever owned and I have owned many, electorlux, rainbow, oreck, and hoover, just to name a few.

The sales approach leaves a lot to be desired that I will admit, and the distribution company I dealt with is crooked as all hell.  First I was told they were coming in to clean my carpets because a friend gave me a gift certificate, they never said it was a solicitation.  Also the sales man tried to sell me the demo, eventually he gave up and gave me a brand new one but tried like hell to get me to take the demo.  They did take my old vacuum in trade but gave me $100 off the price of the Kirby for it, which is okay considering I only paid $60 for it. 

I ended up getting the hardwood floor cleaner, the carpet shampooer and all the accessories + a bunch of bags for $1600 and some change which isn't bad considering it retails for $2400.
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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Probably no mud, just a bad vacuum.

AUTHOR: Penny - (United States of America)

I doubt she was vacuuming up mud.  The Kurby's from ages ago were actually worth the $1000, but these new products are all crap.  The machines all look fancy and have neat features, but it's very cheaply built.  The newer a machine is in the Kirby world, the faster it will fall apart.  Take the age of the Kurby and cut it in half, that's how long it will generally last. 

Over 20 years old - can last a decade or more
10 years old - 6-8 years
5 years - may last 3-4 years
Under 5 years - may last a few months to 3 years

Oh, and a lot of Kurby's are actually sold to the customer used.  If the salesman has used that vacuum 2,985 times, then you get that vacuum that has been used 2,985 times!

My experience, anyway.
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#4 UPDATE Employee

i'm sorrry sales man didn't tell you

AUTHOR: Jt - (U.S.A.)

you have to turn machine to neutral when it not on like a car. you have a three year warrnity and life time rebuld plan if bought new you underpaid any way. make sure every thing is connected properly safty switch will not alllow it to turn on watch dvd.
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#5 Consumer Suggestion

Retard? From an employee??? WOW

AUTHOR: Robert - (U.S.A.)

Why should I be surprised by this employee's comments?

""Ok, I have been with kirby for a long time and would just like to say you're retarted and I am going to fix all your problems right here.""

Oh? Are you going to direct that someone at Kirby HQ answer her emails for support? Are you that far up the foodchain with Kirby?

""First you say that the kirby is too heavy to push with the bag. Why don't you just empty the bag when it gets full instead of being the retard who pushes around a full vacumm? And you also said the kirby only pushes around when it is on. COMMON MISTAKE: look at your on button, and below it is a switch for neutral and drive, labeled n and d, respectively. If you have the thing in drive when its off, it isn't gonna push, you have to put it in neutral.""

Gosh, it even has a gear shifter? BTW "retard" other propelled or assisted drive vacuums don't NEED a gear shift.

""Second, kirbys, when taken care of properly, last at least 6 decades. If yours is broken already then I give you some serious credit, I personally thought the only way to break a kirby was to drop it off the empire state building.""

Obviously you thought wrong-and I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt as to whether you can think at all-an employee calling customers retards, yeah Einstein, that's gonna get more customers all too eager to call up for a demo! LOL!

""but EVERY PLASTIC PIECE ON THE KIRBY is made from the SAME EXACT PLASTIC that NASA makes their aircraft windshields from.""

Here's a hot flash for you Einstein, the windshields and ports on the space shuttles are NOT made of plastic.

""So don't tell me that this plastic can withstand flights into space and hundreds of degrees of heat landing back onto earth, but will break when you inflate a child's toy.""

The windows on the shuttles are NOT made of plastic fool!

""So before you file a complaint about a company that's been around longer than you've been alive, do your research, cause you look retarted complaining about these 'problems' that are virtually impossible to even happen.""

Yup! That's quite a sales pitch you have their Einstein! LOL!!!
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#6 Consumer Comment

Kirbys are NOT Junk

AUTHOR: Soonjung - (U.S.A.)

I sold Kirby Vacuum Cleaners for one week when I was 18. I disagree with the sales techniques and think that the salesmen are greedy and rude. I, on the other hand, was so excited about the efficiency, strength, versatility and life time warranty that I quit selling the vacuums and started my own cleaning company. I went out and bought a 10 yr old Kirby from a local, and honest, independent Kirby dealer, and started cleaning houses. (I have had this vacuum for 2 yrs now and have not spent a single penny on repairs.) My first customer had a newer Kirby so I insisted on using his but he insisted that it was broken. I took a look at it and realized that the belt was not on. The Kirby is a pretty complicated vacuum, but if you would just take 5 minutes and learn how to fix these little hiccups, you would be getting more than your money's worth out of your $1000 vacuum. Here is what is wrong with your vacuum, Nikki. The wheels will not budge if you have it in Drive Mode when it is off. Likewise, if you have it in Neutral Mode, then it will be very difficult to push while it is on. Neutral for Off, Drive for On. These switches are just below the ON/OFF button and are indicated with an N and a D. No other vacuum has the strength and versatility of a Kirby. I would like to urge any disgruntled Kirby owners to buckle down and give your Kirby vacuum another chance. It will be worth it I promise! Please contact me with any and all of your Kirby Vacuum Questions. I am not a salesman, I am just an avid believer in products that WORK!!!
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#7 Consumer Comment

The heck with Kirby.

AUTHOR: Robert - (U.S.A.)

I had a kirby back in 1975-heavy as heck. The only think I did like about it was the 3 head carpet shampoo/floor scrubber.

I've had many different makes of vacuum cleaners. So far, IMO, the best I have ever had is my (((competitor's name redacted)))) That thing picks up darn near everything and it's very easy to move around. It picks up the cat hair in one pass (we have 2 cats.) The apholstery attachment (power nozzle works well but you need to get the 30 foot extension hose) works great on the furniture in and the car and truck.

sorry, allowing you to give a competitors name would instigate others to just file against their competition, to only come back later to suggest their company, ..plus, if you post a competitors name more than likely they will show up on search engines as a Rip-off! - - your comments on this policy are welcome. CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report. In this case we removed an alleged competitor's name
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#8 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Also, Jenbeth...

AUTHOR: Liz - (U.S.A.)

I'd also like to point out, Jenbeth, this statement :

"Third, don't even give me that crap that the inflator nozzle 'just broke'. I don't know if anyone told you, but EVERY PLASTIC PIECE ON THE KIRBY is made from the SAME EXACT PLASTIC that NASA makes their aircraft windshields from. So don't tell me that this plastic can withstand flights into space and hundreds of degrees of heat landing back onto earth, but will break when you inflate a child's toy."

is false.

There are actually two different types of plastic on the Kirby; Lexon is the hard plastic and Flexon is the soft plastic. And yes, while both are designed by NASA, Lexon is not the same plastic used on NASA windshields. At least not on its own. It's the same material used to make football helmets, and I've seen quite a few football helmets crack under immense force, so it's highly doubtable NASA would utilize such a material to make their windshields out of it.

And again, you spelled "retarded" incorrectly. Perhaps an indicator of your very own intelligence, hmm?
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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Sounds True

AUTHOR: Liz - (U.S.A.)

I wouldn't doubt it. I would never buy one. And the previous employee who left a rebuttal, you have spelled "retarded" incorrectly.
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#10 UPDATE Employee

if you believe this report you are retarted.

AUTHOR: Jenbeth - (U.S.A.)

Ok, I have been with kirby for a long time and would just like to say you're retarted and I am going to fix all your problems right here.

First you say that the kirby is too heavy to push with the bag. Why don't you just empty the bag when it gets full instead of being the retard who pushes around a full vacumm? And you also said the kirby only pushes around when it is on. COMMON MISTAKE: look at your on button, and below it is a switch for neutral and drive, labeled n and d, respectively. If you have the thing in drive when its off, it isn't gonna push, you have to put it in neutral.

Second, kirbys, when taken care of properly, last at least 6 decades. If yours is broken already then I give you some serious credit, I personally thought the only way to break a kirby was to drop it off the empire state building.

Third, don't even give me that crap that the inflator nozzle 'just broke'. I don't know if anyone told you, but EVERY PLASTIC PIECE ON THE KIRBY is made from the SAME EXACT PLASTIC that NASA makes their aircraft windshields from. So don't tell me that this plastic can withstand flights into space and hundreds of degrees of heat landing back onto earth, but will break when you inflate a child's toy.

I dialed customer service today and got in touch with someone without having to even try. So before you file a complaint about a company that's been around longer than you've been alive, do your research, cause you look retarted complaining about these 'problems' that are virtually impossible to even happen.
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#11 Author of original report

Kirby Vacuum Cleaner Yes, this one has the drive system

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Ok, to the person who said I was lying about it being heavy... LMAO.... Yes, there is a "secret compartment" that makes the vacuum "gain mass".... LMAO it's called the COLLECTION BAG. So you sell new ones... Yeah, they don't have a collection bag that is "gaining mass" because you don't go around cleaning people's houses. You just swipe the vacuum up and down for a minute and catch the dirt on that little filter disk so that you can show the victim what you sucked up. Before the damned thing blew up or whatever the hell it did, the cord or whatever, I would have to change the collection bags when they were only a fourth of the way full because I would have to get the hand truck out to move it. I have very little upper body strength. And since I have been posting on this site I have been making an extra effort to get in touch with the customer service, and STILL to no avail. If I have to pay to ship this thing back to them, which remains to be seen, I'm going to end up spending $100's of dollars just because of how much the thing weighs. If you pay the shipping I would GLADLY send it to you! Thanks for reading..
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#12 Consumer Suggestion

In responce to the person above me

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (U.S.A.)

Dont call him a liar, The newer kirbys with "Tech-Drive" are obviously more heavy and adds 1.5 amps opposed to the older models which are lighter and more easier to push. Also what do you do when you come to someones house and you ask them to pull out their "inferior vacuum" and they drag out a older kirby vacuum?
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#13 UPDATE Employee

Why are you lying?

AUTHOR: Thelionsouled - (U.S.A.)

I just recently started selling Kirby vacuums and the thing is made of a die cast aluminum, I strained my back a few days ago and I can lift the thing easily, strained back and all. As for it getting heavier.

Think about that for a second, In order for something to get heavier it has to gain mass. Where is the extra mass that is mysteriously being gained from use being stored? You think there is a secret compartment to secretly store dirt in an underhanded attempt to make you work harder? The thing moves across the floor quite easily plugged in or not and comes with a warranty, The company has been in business for almost 90 years and you're the one person who can't get in touch with anyone? This whole concept is laughable. The motor works on 7.5 amps and has it's own fan for cooling so no dirt ever touches the thing, What would cause it to stop working? If you don't want it send it to me. I love thing.
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#14 Consumer Suggestion

Cord

AUTHOR: Jim - (U.S.A.)

I have had to have mine replaced twice, once it sparked from the cord (I know I spelled it wrong last post, it's not a musical chord) and once from under the hood area. Even now, when I use the short handle attachment to do the stairs and twist/kink the cord it will shut off the vacuum.

Kirby has had in the past service people in the USA (they started this about 5 years or so ago due to complaints about service) who will come out to your house and clean/fix/adjust your Kirby for you. I had a guy out to fix mine about 2 years ago--really nice guy, used to work for Sears doing appliance repair. He replaced the cord at that time and it worked fine (I had done it once before) and has since.

Like an auto repair, you want to start with the cheapest part first and work your way up in cost (if need be). Replace your cord and most likely your Kirby will work fine. But be aware that it can happen again and you might need to replace it later down the road.
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#15 Author of original report

Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Ok, I heard the pop noise and I saw a blue spark come from under the little metal hood that you lift to change the attachments.
I don't know if that is what happened to you, and I am just asking really.
I would think that if it was the cord the blue spark would have come from an area around the cord, instead of under the metal top that you lift to change the attachments. The blue spark was no where near the cord area. So.... I am basically asking if a spark from INSIDE the motor area means that the CORD went bad, and is therefore the reason why it doesn't come on anymore?
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#16 Author of original report

Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Ok, I heard the pop noise and I saw a blue spark come from under the little metal hood that you lift to change the attachments.
I don't know if that is what happened to you, and I am just asking really.
I would think that if it was the cord the blue spark would have come from an area around the cord, instead of under the metal top that you lift to change the attachments. The blue spark was no where near the cord area. So.... I am basically asking if a spark from INSIDE the motor area means that the CORD went bad, and is therefore the reason why it doesn't come on anymore?
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#17 Author of original report

Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Ok, I heard the pop noise and I saw a blue spark come from under the little metal hood that you lift to change the attachments.
I don't know if that is what happened to you, and I am just asking really.
I would think that if it was the cord the blue spark would have come from an area around the cord, instead of under the metal top that you lift to change the attachments. The blue spark was no where near the cord area. So.... I am basically asking if a spark from INSIDE the motor area means that the CORD went bad, and is therefore the reason why it doesn't come on anymore?
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#18 Author of original report

Just a question about saying that it isn't the motor and it's the cord...

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Ok, I heard the pop noise and I saw a blue spark come from under the little metal hood that you lift to change the attachments.
I don't know if that is what happened to you, and I am just asking really.
I would think that if it was the cord the blue spark would have come from an area around the cord, instead of under the metal top that you lift to change the attachments. The blue spark was no where near the cord area. So.... I am basically asking if a spark from INSIDE the motor area means that the CORD went bad, and is therefore the reason why it doesn't come on anymore?
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#19 Consumer Suggestion

It's not your motor

AUTHOR: Jim - (U.S.A.)

I have had the same thing happen with my older G4 model. What you have described is not the motor, it is the power chord malfunctioning. It appears to be fairly common with Kirbys.

Your motor is fine, you just need to (or have someone) replace the chord you plug into the wall and it will work fine. For some reason those chords are very sensitive.
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#20 Author of original report

Update on responses.

AUTHOR: Nikki - (U.S.A.)

Thank you for telling me about selling it for parts on e-bay. That is a good idea. Since I can't get anyone to fix it and because the customer service won't return my phone calls or emails.... I guess that is my option besides pitching it off to the curb for the garbage man.
By the way, Hurricane Katrina was in August of 2005, just in case you thought it was less than a year ago. And my house was hit by a tornado. I did not just get flooded.
The debris was removed by a crane, NOT a Kirby vacuum.
How absurd.
I was vacuuming a brand new carpet when it went "POP" and I saw a big blue spark, then it never worked again.
So maybe you have one of the good ones from the ancient years that work. But this one was a piece of junk. I could have gotten better suction from a dust buster. Maybe I got a lemon. But regardless... They should fix it.
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#21 Consumer Comment

Nikki

AUTHOR: Destructo - (U.S.A.)

There are many vacuum cleaner service technicians in my area that have boycotted repairing Kirby, because they refuse to fix their problems. They've denied the repair of many of their vacuum's that are dying within a month or two.

I had a Kirby, and it too, broke. I sucked up the loss, and won't purchase another Kirby product.
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#22 Consumer Comment

HAVE YOU BEEN VACCUMING MUD FROM KATRINA?????????????????

AUTHOR: Margaret - (U.S.A.)

I have a 1964 Kirby, given to me by my grandmother who also bought it brand new. The vaccum is older than me. She had the motor rebuilt in the 80's. She gave it to me because its too heavy for her to carry anymore.

You must have been vaccuming up hurricane mud because a Kirby does not go out in that short of a time frame.
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#23 Consumer Suggestion

What You Should Do

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (U.S.A.)

Okay IF you can get it fixed sell it on ebay, If you can't sell it on ebay for parts. Then take the money from that and buy any one of these models

-The Tradition
-The Heritage
-The Heritage II
-The Legend II

They dont have a power drive but the power drive weighs the kirby down and these vacuums move without it being on. These also take disposable HEPA bags and work the same or even better than the new ones
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