I bought this old Sears vacuum many years back for $30. I used it for about 14 years or so as a tow behind until the motor finally failed. Needless to say I got my $30 worth out of it. I like it because it's small (I don't have huge amounts of leaves) and it fits into tight spaces. But the casters always had a tendency to tear the grass. Now that I have a 3pt hitch on my GT, I decided I wanted a 3pt hitch vacuum. Looked at new ones, but at $2K to $6K, I just couldn't justify it. I then decided to convert the old Sears vacuum to 3pt so that the wheels don't touch the ground when in use. Attached is what I ended up with.
It's a bit of a contraption, but I have a pretty descent vacuum that's easy to haul around for about $330 (motor and carry-all). Ugly, but for $2G's I'll put up with ugly.
New Motor change was easy, once you determine what is compatible. Love the heavy steel impeller in this old sears too.
For the chute adapter, I drilled holes in some square tubing and welded to a plate. Then bolted the plate inside my old chute adapter. I used the pin from the original deflector. Fits perfectly. Glad I didn't have to buy a new adapter.
Getting the carry-all to work was quite the chore. I wanted to be able to keep the original vacuum intact, and be able to use the carry-all for other purposes. Keeping the casters on the vacuum makes it easy to move around too. To get everything high enough off the ground so as to avoid digging in on slopes and the like (GT doesn't lift very high), I added a second set of 3-pt mounts as low as I could get them on the carry-all. This worked great. To mount the vacuum I attached some all-thread to a 2x4 on the carry-all and drilled a hole in the fixed hitch of the vacuum. I simply lift the vacuum onto the stud and it stays in place and is pretty level too. The angle and forward leaning nature of the vacuum keep it rock solid.