1968 Chrysler Newport - adding Air Conditioning.. here we go :)

MBar

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I have looked online and am considering Nastalgic and Vintage Air.. sent email request for quote from them but no reply days later... am also considering Coldmaster. They answer the phone and seem helpful though, to be honest, I haven't called the others because I'm having to do this during work hours... anyhow, I checked out the under-dash units and didn't have quite enough clearance because my heater box hangs too far down.

Last weekend I removed the heater box. Fairly simple but the biggest lesson was to remove the front seat (4 nuts under the floor) and that made a world of difference in comfort and suppression of cuss words. Basically, unplug everything, remove the radio, remove the glove box (how the heck do they do this without breaking it like I did?!) and then unclamp the hoses and then remove the 3 nuts on the engine side of the firewall. It seemed like birthing a child but it did manage to get maneuvered out. My heatr was working with maybe a little weaknesss on the blower. I figured it's good to do this as I don't know how long the heater core would have lasted (it's never been replaced).

So now I have a big space to play with but no heater. Coldmaster has a pretty neat Under-dash heater for 50 bucks with 4 ports and a 3-speed blower that I think I am going to use. I looked into combo ac with heat but am told the BTU goes way down because the coil space is split between heat and cool.

I am considering using oem radio bezel and vents with hoses and have found that stuff for about 125.00. I hit up desert valley auto parts but they want waaaay too much for the parts. I am still looking for the side vents and whatever you call the bezel or dash part that has the side openings. I may just go with the center vents and mount a couple of vents under the dash. This way, I can avoid a big under-dash unit. (That was my first "just get it done" plan but those factory vents seem so much cooler and now that I have that space I can hide the evap unit. Does anybody have suggestion as to what I should use? I will for sure use the Nostalgic Air Pulley for 149.00 without the idler or crank addition. I am looking for the best choice to fit the evap behind the dash. If anyone has done this please reply and pics would be great. I will continue this thread as I go and pics soon.
 

Ross Wooldridge

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The number 1 add-on AC unit back in the day was the Mark IV, which is now being made again. It is narrow enough to retain your original heater box, and has generally good reviews on its ability to cool down a full size car.

960-672001-VHY.jpg


Mark IV under dash AC - Google Search

As well, Chrysler made Air Temp under dash units for dealer AC add-ons - they were typically a LOT larger than the Mark IV, but again, narrow enough to not require the removal of the heater box. All under dash units were often known as knee-knockers... I had one and I could see why!

1.jpg


You may find that if you wanted to have heat, you could reinstall your heater. The issue mostly stems from cars with consoles, but in a C body, the solution (even with the big Air Temp unit) was to move it to the passenger side. I know, I measured.

All of the under dash AC units have their own fans, so the weakness of your heater's fan was of no consequence, since it would not be used when using the AC. Regarding the vents - it seems to me that you're adding a lot of work to make things look semi-factory, when the simple addition of a modern vintage-looking Mark IV unit would likely give you everything you want. Just my opinion, and as we all know, opinions are like assholes - everyone's got one!
:lol:

To do the same to a 65 or a 66 Monaco/Polara, one needs to acquire an AC dash, because there are NO vents in a non-AC dash. At that point, one could potentially hide things up under the dash, but there's not a lot of room with the heater box there. As far as I can remember, the same situation exists for a 68 Chrysler - no vents in the dash if the car was not originally equipped with factory AC, and to add them to a non-AC dash is a pain. However, I could be wrong.

Most of these companies make very nice looking centre and side outlets for AC that bolt to the bottom of the dash, so that may be the way to go there.

The other issue is the ability for the radiator to handle the extra work of cooling things down under the hood. You need to make sure that things are tip top in that department.
 
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MBar

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The number 1 add-on AC unit back in the day was the Mark IV, which is now being made again. It is narrow enough to retain your original heater box, and has generally good reviews on its ability to cool down a full size car.

View attachment 468890

Mark IV under dash AC - Google Search

As well, Chrysler made Air Temp under dash units for dealer AC add-ons - they were typically a LOT larger than the Mark IV, but again, narrow enough to not require the removal of the heater box. All under dash units were often known as knee-knockers... I had one and I could see why!

View attachment 468889

You may find that if you wanted to have heat, you could reinstall your heater. The issue mostly stems from cars with consoles, but in a C body, the solution (even with the big Air Temp unit) was to move it to the passenger side. I know, I measured.

All of the under dash AC units have their own fans, so the weakness of your heater's fan was of no consequence, since it would not be used when using the AC. Regarding the vents - it seems to me that you're adding a lot of work to make things look semi-factory, when the simple addition of a modern vintage-looking Mark IV unit would likely give you everything you want. Just my opinion, and as we all know, opinions are like assholes - everyone's got one!
:lol:

To do the same to a 65 or a 66 Monaco/Polara, one needs to acquire an AC dash, because there are NO vents in a non-AC dash. At that point, one could potentially hide things up under the dash, but there's not a lot of room with the heater box there. As far as I can remember, the same situation exists for a 68 Chrysler - no vents in the dash if the car was not originally equipped with factory AC, and to add them to a non-AC dash is a pain. However, I could be wrong.

Most of these companies make very nice looking centre and side outlets for AC that bolt to the bottom of the dash, so that may be the way to go there.

The other issue is the ability for the radiator to handle the extra work of cooling things down under the hood. You need to make sure that things are tip top in that department.
Thank you... Yes, the kits I've seen from Cold master include electric fans for the condenser. I have found the radio bezel with the vents for 60 to 85 bucks and more... The parts that attach to those vents with the hoses is about 40.00 and the side vents do seem like a pain so I will probably use the ones you suggest for under-dash. I'll have th center factory vents and the aftermarkets hanging on the sides..
 

Ross Wooldridge

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As far as I know, there are no centre dash vents in a non-AC 68 Chrysler.

The fans I speak are in the under dash unit, and serve to blow air across the evaporator contained in the under dash unit. They are typically rotary drum type, similar to what's in your heater box. Usually the under-dash units have a pair of side outlets in addition to the three or four front facing outlets, and those side outlets can be attached to ductwork and vents (sometimes known as spot coolers) that you would put on either side of the of the dash.

The condensor sits in front of the radiator in the engine bay, and is typically cooled by the engine's existing cooling fan.

Respectfully, it sounds like you need to do a bit more research and learn how an air conditioning system actually works. Going into this conversion without a bit more knowledge could have you winding up spending a lot more money than you need to, and experiencing a lot more aggravation and potentially less than satisfactory results.

AC is one of those things that is wonderful in an old car, but you gotta do it right. I think you will ultimately regret removing your heater.
 

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MBar

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I got mine from Rainbow Products when they used to come to Carlisle. They are a VintageAir distributor.

Got a good deal on it too with excellent customer service. The condenser got damaged in shipping. I called them, sent some pics and they shipped a new one right away. Asked if they wanted the old one back and they said keep it.

Rainbow Products Online | Nationwide Distributor of Automotive A/C for older and newer model cars

Kevin
Thanks for the response... I looked at the link you shared.. looks pretty good. I would like to call them but in the meantime, I saw this on there: I like the heat and air choice
Rainbow Products Online | Nationwide distributor of automotive A/C for older and newer model cars
 

MBar

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As far as I know, there are no centre dash vents in a non-AC 68 Chrysler.

The fans I speak are in the under dash unit, and serve to blow air across the evaporator contained in the under dash unit. They are typically rotary drum type, similar to what's in your heater box. Usually the under-dash units have a pair of side outlets in addition to the three or four front facing outlets, and those side outlets can be attached to ductwork and vents (sometimes known as spot coolers) that you would put on either side of the of the dash.

The condensor sits in front of the radiator in the engine bay, and is typically cooled by the engine's existing cooling fan.

Respectfully, it sounds like you need to do a bit more research and learn how an air conditioning system actually works. Going into this conversion without a bit more knowledge could have you winding up spending a lot more money than you need to, and experiencing a lot more aggravation and potentially less than satisfactory results.

AC is one of those things that is wonderful in an old car, but you gotta do it right. I think you will ultimately regret removing your heater.
I have a fair understanding of the project and think I have a basic grasp of the parts involved. I spoke of the fans in the kit as an answer to your concern about the radiator and cooling system being up to snuff. For sure though, I have plenty to learn and do appreciate your experience.
I found some of the parts that I need if I want some of the air coming out of the dash but it is a pain to get the side vents. The reason I have this car (and now two additional C Bodies to prove my love LOL) is because as a kid, my dad had a 2-door Newport with AC. And I do remember playing with those movable vents just under the radio. My Newport is non-ac and has similar-looking blanks in place of the vents. I just might get a kick out of putting at least those center vents on from an AC car....memories... just more of what I get when I catch any of the angles on my car.
And I do agree with you that I would like to put my heater back. I for sire will consider that before making a final choice. :)
 

MBar

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Here are some things I am looking at: Leaning toward utilizing the center vents below the radio from an AC car and using some individual vents along the bottom of the dash on the sides. Preferably putting back my heater box (with a new heater core) but as an alternative, using a combo air/heat system or using a separate heater. I'd like to try and decide this week and get started but the more I look, the farther I get from that simple wish for AC.
For those of you that like the Mark IV: I will be calling Rainbow on Monday to talk about it.. I do want the whole kit with Compressor etc..and the best bracket for me seems to be from Nostalgic. I am excited to cool this car. Budget is a big deal because I may just do it to my 72 Fury sedan and also my Suburban. The wagon has dual factory AC so I will want to know more about how well the Mark IV does with Twostick's wagon :)

The coldmaster kits are for reference so far.. I will be checking out different vendors.


side vent
1968 CHRYSLER 300 A/C VENT OEM w/ 2837025 NEW YORKER NEWPORT TOWN & COUNTRY | eBay


Radio Bezel
MOPAR 1967 68 CHRYSLER THUMBWHEEL AM RADIO BEZEL WITH AIR 67 1968 NEWPORT 300 | eBay


center vents
1967-68 Chrysler New Yorker, Newport, 300 Dash A/C Vents With Hoses NICE Orig. | eBay

228 coldmaster
A/C KIT UNIVERSAL UNDER DASH EVAPORATOR 22.220BTU 223-100 B 12V W/ ELECTRICAL HARNESS

- A/C KIT UNIVERSAL UNDER DASH EVAPORATOR HD KIT AIR CONDITIONER 12V 450A-000LR-B BLACK RECTANGULAR LOUVERS W/ ELECTRICAL HARNESS

Separate Heater (I am getting one for my pickup 50.00!)
CAR AND TRUCK HEATER 12V UNDER DASH with SPEED SWITCH

radio bezel.jpg


vents and hoses.jpg


heaterdimensions.jpg
 

MBar

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Sooooo... I am probably going to get the Vintage Air Gen II super with ac/heat/defrost.. Thank you Twostick for the recommendation

Now, about the dash... I am wanting to try to use the factory dash vents but converting my car seems to be getting too complicated. I now have the side vents and hoses but I am looking for the fron-t-of-thedash trim for left and right. I have been quoted some seriously high prices so that may not happen unless I find a reasonable set. The center radio bezel is easy to find. I have been assuming the face trim was all that I needed but now I found this dash panel showing the cutouts for the vents on the sides. my question is: Did all dashes have the cut-out for ac vents and used different face trim depending on if it is a n ac car? or do I have to worry about making sure my dash has those cutouts in the first place? the more I see the more it makes sense to just use some under-dash vents...and, how hard is this going to be if I decide to do it?

dash.jpg


vents and hoses.jpg
 

live4theking

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I think the dashes are are the same behind the center trim. I have a non AC dash in the shed. I'll try to remember to get a pick of it. I should be able to tell since my NYer has AC - which I've currently got torn out of the car.
 

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Sooooo... I am probably going to get the Vintage Air Gen II super with ac/heat/defrost.. Thank you Twostick for the recommendation

Now, about the dash... I am wanting to try to use the factory dash vents but converting my car seems to be getting too complicated. I now have the side vents and hoses but I am looking for the fron-t-of-thedash trim for left and right. I have been quoted some seriously high prices so that may not happen unless I find a reasonable set. The center radio bezel is easy to find. I have been assuming the face trim was all that I needed but now I found this dash panel showing the cutouts for the vents on the sides. my question is: Did all dashes have the cut-out for ac vents and used different face trim depending on if it is a n ac car? or do I have to worry about making sure my dash has those cutouts in the first place? the more I see the more it makes sense to just use some under-dash vents...and, how hard is this going to be if I decide to do it?

View attachment 479226

View attachment 479227
I have purchased an AC dash, heater / evap box, hoses, etc for a 68 Fury and am planning on installing it in a non-AC Fury.
I have a few other projects to tackle before this gets started, but will be looking into it this winter. Your project, I will follow…
 

1970cat

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I have purchased an AC dash, heater / evap box, hoses, etc for a 68 Fury and am planning on installing it in a non-AC Fury.
I have a few other projects to tackle before this gets started, but will be looking into it this winter. Your project, I will follow…
i don't know about 68, but the 69 firewall openings are different between a/c and non a/c. might be worth checking out.
 

Ross Wooldridge

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The firewalls are definitely different between AC and non AC cars. An AC car has more heater hose connections at the firewall (4 connections, 3 holes, one an oval), plus the high and low pressure freon lines, and a big hole for the blower motor, and vacuum line from the back of the motor to the Heater/AC box. A non AC dash only has 2 heater hose connections and a vacuum line (Fury doesn't even have the vacuum line in 65/66), and no blower motor hole or other line holes.

However, if he uses an aftermarket AC and heat system, it's unlikely that any serious firewall mods are needed other than holes for the freon lines.
 
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