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one man brake bleeder


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looking for one of these that is easy to use and will pull from the rear brakes as well as fronts. will not be used often so i do not need an expensive one. looking for recomendations on this site. i have a 54 chrysler.   capt den 

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Mightyvac MV8000 ..... Is one I would not recommend. ..... I bought mine about 4 years ago and was never really satisfied with it ..... I probably attempted to use it 6 times.

It is still stored in its original packaging and looks like new ..... The back of the plastic gauge has cracked .... looks like a freeze crack from cold winter weather.

 

Just saying I bought it, was never happy with it .... now it is junk ..... Only $50 on Amazon ..... this is not the one for you.

 

 

image.png.1957f73a7da45648837507231c5e9b34.png

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You can make a pressure bleeder from a small garden sprayer with a bit of creativity and shade tree engineering. I have the motive pressure bleeder but it may be over your budget. Getting a spare leg to pump the pedal while you open bleeders is the lowest cost option.....unless it comes with residual expenses.... 😄

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2 hours ago, Los_Control said:

Mightyvac MV8000 ..... Is one I would not recommend. ..... I bought mine about 4 years ago and was never really satisfied with it ..... I probably attempted to use it 6 times.

It is still stored in its original packaging and looks like new ..... The back of the plastic gauge has cracked .... looks like a freeze crack from cold winter weather.

 

Just saying I bought it, was never happy with it .... now it is junk ..... Only $50 on Amazon ..... this is not the one for you.

I had very poor experiences trying to use vacuum bleeders, including the Mightyvac. It sits in my tool chest waiting for me to figure out something it is actually good for. Back when I had a car with a vacuum advance I could use it to test that but my '33 has only mechanical advance and the new car is all computerized.

2 hours ago, Sam Buchanan said:

You can make a pressure bleeder from a small garden sprayer with a bit of creativity and shade tree engineering. I have the motive pressure bleeder but it may be over your budget. Getting a spare leg to pump the pedal while you open bleeders is the lowest cost option.....unless it comes with residual expenses.... 😄

This is what I did. Small garden sprayer on sale plus some hose, fittings, etc. I think I have less than $50 in it. Makes one person brake bleeding almost fun and pleasant.

 

If you are planning on using DOT5 fluid, then figure out a way to pressurize the pot without using the pump built into the lid of the garden sprayer as that will put air bubbles into the fluid. I got a valve stem from my local auto supply and mounted it on the upper side of the pot, above the level I fill it to, and then use my tire chuck set to a low pressure to pressurize it.

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The cheapest way to go is a simple gravity bleed (useful where the fluid tank is above the cylinders). Second cheapest is a small catch bottle and pumping the pedal. Then there are two ways to go: supply pressure to the master, or pull vacuum at the slaves. I've used both, including the previously not-recommended hand pump. Works alright for me :) 

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I, too, have had poor results with the Mighty Vac.  I've had one for about 20 years now.  The containers it came with are good for bleeding the brakes manually.  Technically I use a one man brake bleeding system, albeit with two persons, the other one being my wife...

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My two cents: Vacuum Brake Bleeders on Drum Brake cars are iffy at best.

You never seem to have enough vacuum...but that's not really the problem.

What happens is air leaks past the cups in the wheel cylinders.

They actually work well with disc brakes because of the design of the seals in the calipers.

 

Pressure bleeding works better on Drum Brakes because the cups are always in their operational mode.

I had to make my own pressure bleeder for my forklift the other day. I used 2 inch plastic pipe fittings and a C-clamp ( I didn't glue one of the fittings so I could refill it and I needed a way to hold it together. A little air pressure would blow the thing apart )

All you guys with Mighty Vacs can switch them to pressure mode and they will work fine.

The key to success is mounting your reservoir to the master cylinder fill port. That's a little tricky.

 

If you want to really get Guru, Earl's Supply makes a brake bleeder nipple with a check valve in it. All you have to do is crack the bleeder and pump the brake pedal a couple of times. They can be found at Summit Racing dot com. A little pricey but you could buy one and move it around to get the job done. if you crafty you won't get air in the system.

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Just a caution on homemade or cheaper pressure bleeders, be sure not to expel too much fluid before refilling.   Most cheap solutions don't separate the air from the fluid and can refill you system with air if not refilled with fluid soon enough.

 

Older, professional models had a diaphragm separating the the two.   Sure wish I hadn't sold mine.

 

I plan to weld a fitting into my reservoir cap to attach a hand pump, even a bicycle pump would work.  I'm using a later, firewall mounted master so the lid isn't thick enough to just drill and tap.  

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13 minutes ago, Ivan_B said:

Even with a nut and washer? 🤔

while one can do that, the ole welder would be my go-to and was the manner we used at the dealership for pressure bleeding.  Pressure is often better for solo bleeding as often bleeding the rears with vacuum can be an annoyance.  Today however I never use pressure nor do I do the ole pump up and bleed until I have a full pedal so as not to aerate the fluid.   My wife has passed brake bleeding 101 with flying colors.  

Edited by Plymouthy Adams
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Ive actually used a hose taped up tight on my shop vac. Worked great but loren has a good point about air seaping past the cups.

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8 hours ago, Ivan_B said:

Even with a nut and washer? 🤔

The lid doesn't even have a flat spot, it's kinda domed.   I could flatten it, drill a hole and use a bulkhead type fitting, but I could drill and weld a standard fitting from my tool box on there while thinking about the alternatives.

Edited by kencombs
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On my quickie pressure bleeder I used two metal valve stems I salvaged from old wheels. One to slip the remote reservoir hose on to ( with the valve removed ) and the other to use a tire chuck on. You could drill a hole in an old cap and use a tire valve stem with the valve removed and a radiator pressure pump to pressurize it. 
Got to McGiver it. lol

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My brother in law gave me this Wagner brake bleeder a few years ago. I think it's from around 1937. Not sure how common they were or if they even worked that well, but it was MADE IN USA.  Probably try to sell it at our upcoming yard sale.

 

brakebleeder.jpg

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2 hours ago, Bob Riding said:

My brother in law gave me this Wagner brake bleeder a few years ago. I think it's from around 1937. Not sure how common they were or if they even worked that well, but it was MADE IN USA.  Probably try to sell it at our upcoming yard sale.

 

brakebleeder.jpg

That is just like the one I had.   At least looks like it. If so it has a diaphragm separating the air and fluid.  Excellent tool.  Wish you were closer I’d be at the yard sale

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I have a vacuum one, and tries the garden sprayer one to back flow the lines from wheel to mc.  Neither worked well.  I usually put a couple inches of fluid in a large Mason jar.  Then using a long hose from the bleeder into the jar, so the tube doesnt suck air when the pedal is on the up stroke.  I set up lights and using a mirror, I pump slowly till the bubbles dissappear.   My dad taught me to put a piece of 2x4 under the brake pedal.  This keeps the piston seal from getting roughed up by any ridge the hone might have missed by not allowing it to bottom out

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Me too with the no vote on the Mi-T-Vac. Just worthless for vacuum brake bleeding. And brake fluid seeps into the hand pump and necessitates taking it apart and cleaning it out. I use it for other things around the shop, though. I've had good results with the Speed Bleeders -- the bleeder screws with the ball check valves in them. That turns it into a one person job that takes very little time and you just rig up a catch can with an old plastic peanut butter jar and some silicone tubing. I've also had good results with a garden sprayer-type pressure bleeder, but I find I really have to carefully clean ALL the DOT 3 brake fluid out of it, or else the whole thing is a mess when I come back to use it the next year. 

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On 5/14/2024 at 2:05 PM, Los_Control said:

Mightyvac MV8000 ..... Is one I would not recommend. ..... I bought mine about 4 years ago and was never really satisfied with it ..... I probably attempted to use it 6 times.

It is still stored in its original packaging and looks like new ..... The back of the plastic gauge has cracked .... looks like a freeze crack from cold winter weather.

 

Just saying I bought it, was never happy with it .... now it is junk ..... Only $50 on Amazon ..... this is not the one for you.

 

 

image.png.1957f73a7da45648837507231c5e9b34.png

I agree.  I had exactly the same issue with this particular model.

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