Home

Getting Started

The Donor Car

Removing the ICE

Electric Motor

Coupler
Adapter Plates
Installing the Motor
Batteries
Controller
Brake Vacuum

12 volt Circuit

Testing
Driving

Brake Vacuum

Since the internal combustion engine is gone, I need to add a vacuum system to assist the brakes. I am working on this as I work on the controller board and the battery boxes. I could have gotten a complete kit from one of the EV parts suppliers or I could have pulled a vacuum pump from a junk GM car (early 80's). I found a pump on ebay from Jockmoonster for $98 + shipping so I went with that.

February 15. Here is the vacuum pump with a mount made of a piece of computer power supply box and some thick rubber washers from a broken suspension bolt:

Here it is mounted on the inside of the fender well:

February 21. I made a vacuum reservoir bracket by welding a wide strip of iron to a scrap of square tubing:

Here is the vacuum reservoir tube sitting in position for a test fit, not bolted in yet (I have to work on the battery frame):

I used 3" diameter PVC for the reservoir because that's what I had lying around. I got the end caps and some fittings at Home Depot.

February 28. I cemented the reservoir together with PVC cement, including a 1/2" MPT fitting in the top of one of the end caps. I screwed in a 1/2" brass fitting with a 3/8" barbed outlet. I scrounged some vacuum hose left over from our old minivan:

I cut and fit the vacuum hose into two plastic tees and attached an old vacuum gauge I had in a junk drawer. I put plenty of teflon tape on all the threaded connections. I hooked the pump up to a 12 volt battery and tested the system:

It works slowly, seems to have a leak somewhere. I put hose clamps on. In this view you can see that I primed and painted the reservoir bracket.

Hose clamps don't help. Do I need a check valve?

March 2. The vacuum pump lets air in the outlet when the pump is off so the system does not hold vacuum. I have emailed the vendor about the problem.

March 7. The vendor says send the pump back for exchange or refund. I asked him to exchange it for a Thomas pump if possible. If not, I'll get a refund.

March 23. The Thomas Pump arrived today.

April 2. Here is the pump, jerry-rigged for the first drive out of the garage:

The pump cycles on and off frequently, possibly due to a leak in the system.

April 3. I got a fitting that allows me to mount the vacuum switch on the brass tee. I also made a bracket to mount the vacuum switch on the inside fender wall:

Now the pump shuts off after achieving vacuum. No leaks.

May 2. Here is a picture of the final working system, with hose clamps and more securely mounted switch: