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filozof97

Vacuum operated accessories

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Hello.

 

I've been wondering what in old cars was actually vacuum - powered. I know about vacuum wipers, vacuum operated pop - up headlights, vacuum operated convertbile tops in 40s convertibles, vacuum operated wiper doors in Corvette C3, vacuum gearshift control in 1938 Chevrolet. Was there anything else?

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Vacuum power trunk release

Vacuum power door locks

Vacuum operated cruise control

Vacuum operated (or technically, lack thereof) air intakes on various muscle cars

Vacuum operated carb pre-heat air

Vacuum operated HVAC systems

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Some of the accessories on my '65 T-Bird aren't operational, so I can't know for sure, but it appears that the console controlled real interior vent is/was vacuum powered. At least there's what looks like a vacuum line fitting on it.

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The obvious - vacuum spark advance

Not so obvious - vacuum heater controls. I know they came on 59 Olds, no doubt lots of other cars as well.

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, Rusty_OToole said:

The obvious - vacuum spark advance

 

Well, if we're getting into that level of detail, there's the vacuum modulator on automatic transmissions, vacuum break diaphragms on carbs, and vacuum secondaries on some carburetors (or vacuum operated secondary carbs in the case of some tri-power setups). Also, EGR valves were vacuum operated initially, as are the canister vent valves on fuel evaporation charcoal canisters.

 

My 1952 Chevy two ton truck has a vacuum operated two speed rear axle.

 

And the most obvious, vacuum power brake boosters.

Edited by joe_padavano (see edit history)

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Vacuum shifted M4 Chrysler/ DeSoto transmissions.

Late 40's early 50's Mopar vacuum operated  cigarette lighter...

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3 hours ago, joe_padavano said:

Vacuum power door locks

 

Mercedes used this for years, up into at least the mid 80s. 300D  and 240D are good examples. Chassis W123.

 

Most interesting is vacuum is used to turn off the engine! 😨

 

If the vacuum system leaks, you have to get out and press the red lever on the injection pump to shut off the fuel. I worked on  lot of them that you had to lock the driver's door (which then locked the other doors) to shut off the engine. Locking the doors fixed the vacuum leak.👍 As long as the driver could do this, they did not want to fix it. 

 

If you suspect an EMP pulse is going to wipe out electronics, get one of these cars. Only the starter motor is electric as far as the engine is concerned!

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And don't forget GM's vacuum operated ash tray in the late 50s!🤣

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4 hours ago, Rusty_OToole said:

The obvious - vacuum spark advance

Not so obvious - vacuum heater controls. I know they came on 59 Olds, no doubt lots of other cars as well.

 

Vacuum powered heater / cool air doors were found on lots of vehicles.

A '75 Camaro I had at one time would only blow out of the defrost vents until I figured out there was a massive leak in the vacuum line feeding the heat / blend door assembly.

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I’ve got vacuum operated turn signals on my 1926 Dodge. They extend out from their centered position outside the vehicle. 

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Posted (edited)

My 87 Ford Econoline had some vacuum operated pollution controls.

 

And,... when you think about it,...  the nut behind the wheel is an accessory and is sorta vacuum operated, too. :D

 

Paul 

Edited by PFitz (see edit history)
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The Startix automatic starter used vacuum as a regulator for it to know when the engine stalled and had to restart it.

 

Craig

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3 hours ago, 8E45E said:

The Startix automatic starter used vacuum as a regulator for it to know when the engine stalled and had to restart it.

 

Craig

Not that I am aware of -  I have only seen fully electrical examples using voltage drop to cause restarting

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7 minutes ago, John_Mereness said:

Not that I am aware of -  I have only seen fully electrical examples using voltage drop to cause restarting

John,

Series 16 & 18 Franklins used a vacuum operated switch mounted in the middle of the intake manifold and wired to the Startix. It's only shown on the Series 18 Operator's manual wiring diagram., even though it was used on both Series. Franklin called it a "Backfire circuit breaker". On some aftermarket wiring diagrams it's called a, "Current interrupter".

 

You may not have seen an all original setup because most have been removed - it's common that they fail.

 

Paul

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18 hours ago, PFitz said:

John,

Series 16 & 18 Franklins used a vacuum operated switch mounted in the middle of the intake manifold and wired to the Startix. It's only shown on the Series 18 Operator's manual wiring diagram., even though it was used on both Series. Franklin called it a "Backfire circuit breaker". On some aftermarket wiring diagrams it's called a, "Current interrupter".

 

You may not have seen an all original setup because most have been removed - it's common that they fail.

 

Paul

So did Studebaker, and I also have the Shop Manual for a 1936, the last year Studebaker offered Startix, which clearly shows that vacuum operated switch in the diagram.   I suspect it was a common item to any vehicle that came equipped with a Startix.

 

Craig

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On ‎5‎/‎4‎/‎2019 at 6:08 PM, c49er said:

Late 40's early 50's Mopar vacuum operated  cigarette lighter...

Studebaker also offered a 'Drawmatic' cigarette lighter:  http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?94724-RARE-Studebaker-accessory-on-Ebay-1950-1951-1952-Drawmatic-!&highlight=drawmatic

 

Presumably, the same supplier as Chryco's version.  Evans Products, perhaps?  They also supplied the 'Miracle Shift' vacuum assisted transmission shifter for Studebaker in 1938.

 

Craig

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As an after market accessory in the early 1930s you could have bought a small fan that mounted to the steering column and was in a wire cage or by the late 1930s a bullet shaped one with rubber blades and both were used for cooling off the driver in hot weather. I have never seen either pictured or listed in factory accessory brochures or catalogs.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, 8E45E said:

So did Studebaker, and I also have the Shop Manual for a 1936, the last year Studebaker offered Startix, which clearly shows that vacuum operated switch in the diagram.   I suspect it was a common item to any vehicle that came equipped with a Startix.

 

Craig

 

Craig, thank you for adding that. Yes, about a dozen top manufactures used the Startix system in the 30's.

 

First units I ever saw were on a former customer's  Pierce-Arrow collection. It's been over 20 year since I worked on Pierce-Arrows and I can't remember if there was that vacuum switch on their intake system. Not sure if all used that switch because it's not always mentioned in literature about how the Startix works. That's why I just mentioned the Franklin setup, which I know for certain had it.

 

Paul

Edited by PFitz (see edit history)

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Startix was used on Cords too. Not sure on the vacuum  switch.

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A century ago a Vacuum cleaner was quite a novelty. This is an aftermarket accessory engine manifold vacuum powered vacuum cleaner!

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20180429_091321(0).jpg

20180429_091506.jpg

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