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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Here are the Vacuum Pumps Available--want opinions

Hey all, I'm back with some Vacuum Pump options, and looking for your opinions.

As discussed in another thread, the early 80's GM vacuum pumps are now unavailable with the exception of a rare ebay find.

here are the remaining options I've found. Three of them are through Summit, and one is through an Electric Vehicle parts supplier in the US.

The 4 pumps are:

  • SSBC pump, $270 through Summit
  • Classic Performance pump (same as Master Power and Brakes pump), $330 through Summit
  • Summit brand pump, $320 obviously through Summit
  • and Metric Mind pumps, either $350 or $460, depending on which version you get
And yes, I know, I should have gone with a hydroboost system, so please don't beat that dying horse! :noway:

I am looking for people who have experience with any of these pumps as far as flow and noise. How long does it take to go from no vacuum in the booster, to whatever vacuum level that the pump turns off?

Here is a link to Summit's site where the SSBC pump, the Classic Performance pump, and the Summit pump are listed. http://store.summitracing.com/egnsearch.asp?N=700+4294821918+115

Here is a link to the Metric Mind pump. This is by far the most expensive pump at $460, but I know it's intended to be the only source of vacuum for the brakes, so it should be up to the task. http://www.metricmind.com/pump.htm


SSBC Pump:



Classic Performance Pump:



Metric Mind (MES-DEA) Pump:



Summit Racing Pump:

 

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Scott, I'm in the same situation you are. Would appreciate it if you would let me know any information you find out. Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Jim, I have decided to go with the larger MES-DEA pump. I've read good things about them, and I think it SHOULD be up to the job since it is used for electric vehicles where it is the only source of power for the brakes. It also is supposed to be the most quite from what I've read too. The SSBC pump sounds like it works, but there are so many people who are frustrated because of the noise and vibration, I hesitate to use it. I will post some pics and the results once it is installed.

I know everybody boasts on how well hydroboost works, but after doing some searching on it, it turns out that many people who had them installed from the factory on their cars, like the G-bodies with turbos etc don't like them because they break often, and seem to have continual leaks. Several forums I've visited with cars in that situation actually switch their hydroboost system out for a vacuum assist system. Here is a link to a Turbo Regal forum giving advice to do just that. Then you have sites like this one where most of our cars came with vacuum assist systems and everybody switches to the hydroboost setups and say they are great. I think it might be somewhat of a "grass is always greener" scenario. I like the idea of staying with a vacuum system too, so I will always have braking ability, regardless of the engine running, power steering pump or belt working etc.
 

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Which model are you going to get? I would be interested in hearing about the results. I just went through hydraulic leaks with the p/s and am not interested in any more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm going to use the 70/6E2 which is the higher flow unit. I will definitely post some results.

I'm not sure why there is such limited info on vacuum pumps, but either everybody has converted to manual brakes, switched to hydroboost, or actually I'd guess most people until recently used the GM pumps that are now obsolete.

I'd like to hear some more opinions on the other pumps too, just so there is one thread that could help people make up their minds!
 

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I installed the Summit Vacuum Pump and had my first test drive with my new 548" Big Block Chevy. The pump is loud, however I cant hear it after I fire up the Engine. It is mounted with rubber isolators, I did not feel any vibration of the pump, of course the engine took care of that :D I also installed an 8in. Dual Diaphram booster and Master Cylinder. The pump works as advertised, multiple pumps of the brake and the pedal felt good. It reaches 20hg of vacuum quickly, so as far as I can tell, it doesnt run all that much. I chose this unit because all I had to do was mount it and supply power. So far, so good. That is my assesment so far.
Chris
 

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I am thinking about the SSBC pump. I don't know how it would compare with the Summit. Comp cams also lists the SSBC ,but sells it for more money. Chris, how long have you had the pump on? What vacuum did you have before.Jim
 

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I am thinking about the SSBC pump. I don't know how it would compare with the Summit. Comp cams also lists the SSBC ,but sells it for more money. Chris, how long have you had the pump on? What vacuum did you have before.Jim
This is a brand new Engine. I knew I was going to have low vacuum, so my options were; hydroboost, manual master cylinder, or a pump. I went with the pump. I have only driven it 5/6 miles with the pump and the brakes seemed fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Chris, what kind of vacuum does the engine have at idle?

Also, thanks for giving us the review for the Summit pump!
 

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The classic performance pump is made by a company called Gast, instead of paying 300 bucks for that "kit" from classic performance I purchased the pump and a adjustable vac switch (adjust to turn on when it goes under X amount of vac) the cost for me to do it this way saved me about 100 bucks, not a WHOLE lot but its the EXSACT same pump. This setup was working great for me until recently when swapping to the big block I decided to bite the bullet and save the room the booster takes and go to hydroboost. If anyone is interested I will give them a good deal on my pump and adjustable swich. PM me first come first serve.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Tom, how were the noise and vibration of that pump? It sounds like it worked well for you. Do you have a disc/drum setup?

Thanks for you input on the Gast pump, there seems to be several companies who offer that pump in kits.
 

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Chris, what kind of vacuum does the engine have at idle?

Also, thanks for giving us the review for the Summit pump!
I havent checked the vacuum, I know its low :D
 

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I used this pump breifly with a stock front disc and rear drum setup and then continued to use it when going to a 4 wheel disc baer big brake kit, worked well both ways. Noise wise not too bad my couldent hear it over my nasty 383 with 3 Inch ran all the way outback dynomax ultraflow muffs. Vibration was neiglible compared to the big soild lifter cam. if this pump were going into a stock type car, expect about the noise level of a fuel pump. I had it mounted to my inner fender behind the horns without rubber mounts. Add rubber mounts and a better mounting location (like a frame rail)
 

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I went to the local wrecking yard and picked up 3 of the mid 80's GM vacuum pump units for $20. I would look at your local yards first before buying anything. They are installed up under the fender and are protected well from the weather. You can get the rubber isolated mounting bracket and plug at the same time. One of mine looks like new and the other 2 work fine but look used.

See this link for what cars to look for:
http://www.gmcmotorhome.com/tech/vacuum_pump/index.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Whelp, I now have brakes again. I bought the larger flow pump from metric mind. I figured that if those pumps are the ONLY source for brake assist for electric cars, it ought to be very reliable and quiet.

I first mounted it on the inner fender, and it caused quite a bit of reverb, pretty loud. I moved it directly onto the frame, and it is awesome. You can hear it but it is not alot louder than an aquarium air pump. I'm very happy with it, and the brakes are now back in action. I haven't tested them with any emergency style stops or anything, but they are WAY better than I've ever had before.

here are a couple pics. I ran 3/8" hard line to the booster and tee'd it into the line from the engine. I also added 2 inline check valves so the engine didn't pull from the pump line, and vice versa.



 

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Hey Bo Rider,
I just went with an SSCB vacuum pump for my Velle. I have it mounted to a bracket I fabbed up and it is mounted to the frame. There is a small amount of vibration and you can't here the pump run with the engine running, Mild small block with a full exhaust.:D
Let me know if you need pics or more info. The car stops hard and straight.:hurray:
Marc:beers:
 

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Marc,
Thanks for the info and I would appreciate any photos. Nice 1969, I noticed that u did not have a power booster in the photo. Would that make any difference?
I've just had my 70 for about a month and still addressing small issues. However, I will need to have the 350 transmission repaired or replaced with possibly an OD.
Bo Rider
 

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Hey Bo Rider,
I went with a power front disk conversion when I up-graded the wheels. When I went to power, I found that I was not making enough vacuum for the booster.:sad: I'll get some pics and get them sent to you. I'll use your e-mail if I can't figure out how to post them. I will be home from work early tomorrow so I'll get the pics and then we're leaving on vacation for a week or so.:hurray: I'll check back.
Marc:beers:
 
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