I spent the weekend working on my refrigeration project for school. I finished the welding the lines, did all the electrical wiring, and pulled the system into a deep vacuum. I let the vacuum pump run all night and it pulled it down to 270 microns, but wouldn't go any further. Still, well below the 500 micron threshold.
It is coming along nicely. Here is a gallery I created to document the work. I'll update it as the work continues.