Converting from RV-2 to Sanden

1978 NYB

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Save yourself a boatload of frustration and use Aeroquip EZ Clip.

I put a Mark IV in our wagon and after the third crimp started spewing I gave up and I had use of the genuine crimping tool.

I lucked on to an EZ Clip hose kit for $100 that was missing a couple of fittings. Now I just need to be home long enough install it.

For the short time the fittings held I found that the Mark IV will freeze you out tho.

E-Z Clip System for A/C Refrigerant Hoses

Kevin

I used EZ clips to put my Sanden conversion together!

:thumbsup:
 

TxDon

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John, I assume you used the BPE4700 compressor mounting brackets for a big block, is that correct? Were you able to reuse all your existing pulleys and alternator brackets?
 

live4theking

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Don,
I should've bought the BPE4700, but I goofed and bought the BPE4710. I had the guys in the shop where I work massage it so that it would work because I couldn't return it. Yes, all of the pulleys and other brackets worked in factory form.
 

TxDon

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Don,
I should've bought the BPE4700, but I goofed and bought the BPE4710. I had the guys in the shop where I work massage it so that it would work because I couldn't return it. Yes, all of the pulleys and other brackets worked in factory form.
Thanks. All of the BPE website stuff says the kits use the stock stuff but then they show BPE numbers for the pulleys and alternator bracket, a little confusing. They do seem to be the most promising supplier for this, both Vintage air and Old Air only do brackets for non-A/C setups and mostly total system conversions.
 

Anthony Karbaj

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This is essential the account of how I converted my 68 New Yorker from the factory installed RV-2 compressor to a more modern Sanden 508 compressor. This information can be dredged up throughout here, but I thought it would be nice to have it in one place. Honestly, when I bought the car I had no intention of fixing the AC at all. Last fall the bearing in the clutch went which ended up shelling the compress. The scarcity of clutches and the expense of clutch / compressors had me scratching my head.

When some of the guys began to talk about the process to convert to a Sanden I started to look into it. Here's the thread that got it all started. Many thanks go out to John (Big_John), Dave (70bigblockdodge). Brian (thrashingcows), 66Newyorker and others that have been down this road previously.

Anyway here are the different components that I purchased to make this happen.

Compressor Sanden 508 from Ebay Jamcoparts - Auction link

Compressor Brackets - There's a couple of options. BPE Be sure to get the correct one - AMHIK The kit comes with a bunch of washers to use as shims to make up with Chryslers sloppy tolerances where the main bolt goes through the bracket and the power steering bracket.

BPE4700 1967 and up Cast Iron Water Pump Housing
BPE4705 Bracket Kit Fits B/RB Engines With NON-A/C Pulleys & Brackets W/O Power Steering
BPE4710 Bracket Kit Fits B/RB With Factory A/C Brackets & Pulleys with Early Cast Iron & MOST Aluminum Water Pump Housing

Condenser (16x24) & Drier
from ClimaParts - Auction Link
I bought this because it was the largest condenser that I could find. If I were to do it again I wouldn't buy this one. I think I saw one that was 18 x 22. In my opinion it will fit better. It may also make it a little easier to install the lower line that runs to the drier. The factory condenser has the bottom passenger corner cut out for clearance. Any of the newer style condensers have both the input and the output on the same side. This will require some replumbing.

AC Expansion Valve - After purchasing the wrong one I did a bunch of research on Four Seasons website to try to determine which expansion valve would work, catalog. I believe the ones listed below will work, but I encourage you to check for yourself.

Four Seasons 38806 I bought this one from Rock Auto
View attachment 131410
Four Seasons 39013 According to the specs this one should work too.
Four Seasons 38616 I ordered this one twice through the local parts house what came didn't look like the picture nor did it have the right type or size ends.

Hoses and fittings - I took Big_John's advice and got a hold of Mr. FOMOCO (John Kulak). We talked through what I would need. I paid him via Paypal and had the parts 2 days later - TX to PA - not bad if I say so. He's a great old school guy that is very happy to help. I ordered both a straight and a 90° of the #12 O-ring to #10 Hose just because I wasn't sure which one I would use. He ships the fittings with the needed o-rings and a few extras to boot. you can also get the needed Prestite Tape for sealing the expansion valve capillary tube to the suction line from John.

View attachment 131409

If you would like to crimp your own lines you could always purchase the Mastercool (71550) Black Manual A/C Hose Crimper. I got a hold of a shop that often deals with big trucks. They crimped the four hoses for $20, I was pleased with that.

Getting it done.
Obviously before you can put the new stuff on you need to remove the old. I found it helpful to remove the battery and tray to grant easier access to the lowest bolt for the condenser on the driver's side and the line that goes from the compressor to the condenser. Some of these old fitting can be a bear to get a part so I soaked everything ahead of time.

I flushed the evaporator core out following Dave's (70bigblockdodge) recommendation of first spraying brake cleaner into the core then pushing it through with compressed air. Then I ran 32oz. of denatured alcohol through pushed by compressed air also. My goodness the brake cleaner was nasty when it came out. The denatured alcohol came out clear in the end.

I slipped an old piece of garden hose on the side of the evaporator that the expansive valve attaches too then on the suction side I found that a piece of 3/8" fuel line was a nice fit that I could then put the air nozzle into. Crude but effective.
View attachment 131414

The old expansion valve gave a new definition to being difficult. I tried to heat it some, but the insulation between the heater box and the firewall would give off a little smoke with the least little bit of heat. I tried soaking it more. I bought some "freeze" penetrating oil - it didn't want to budge. Finally I threw caution to the wind and grab the sawsall. I cut the valve off leaving just the hex that is closest to the nut that screws it on to the evaporator. This allowed me to put an electric impact on it. Backed up by a 7/8" wrench and running the impact gentle I was able to back it out. The local AC repair place said they see a lot of evaporators being ruined and replaced because of not being able to get the expansion valve out.

The new expansion valve went in fine. I put a wee little bit of grease on the threads to help it thread in easily. Once in then I had the quandary of what to use to seal the capillary tube to the suction line with. Big_John dredged up a couple of options, but my impatience's would wait for something to be shipped in because none of the locals had anything. I remembered that we had this stuff laying around the shop with more than 10 years worth of dust on so I figured I would give it a try. Will (bluefury361) stated that he wrapped the capillary tube around the suction line on one of his cars. So, I did this too since I would be able to insert several inches of it nor lay several inches of it along the short fitting.

I reused the hard line that goes through the radiator support from the condenser to the drier and the hard line that runs down the passenger fender. I glass beaded them at work and then clear coated them. Hopefully this will keep them looking decent for a while. The short one that goes through the radiator support I had to warm a little and tweak it so that I could get the new hose to line up and go on it.
View attachment 131411

The new drier was slightly smaller so I wrapped it in some rubber wrap that I had to get it where the bracket would hold it snugly.

The condenser was fairly easy to deal with. I just had to make up some brackets to mount it up. You can see my comments about condenser selection. I fabricated some brackets from scrap I got at work. Anyone can do this all I had to work with was a 4" vise to make the brackets. I certainly don't have a bunch of metal working tools.
View attachment 131412

As others warned me in regards to hoses make sure that you mark the orientation of the ends when you are laying out how they are going to run. There is no twisting the hose to get them one once crimped. It worked out pretty well for me; one hose had straights on both ends, two of the others had a 90° and a straight (no orientation concerns there either just install the 90° end first, the suction line from the evaporator to the compressor had to be carefully marked on both ends to get the orientation right. I slide the fitting onto the line and then wrapped behind the line with masking tape. Installed one end of the line then did the same on the other end. While installed I marked both the fitting and the line (on the tape). I then unscrewed the fittings and left them on the hose so that I could crimp on the opposite ends.

Installing the new compressor with the BPE bracket is a bit of a pain. I got some 3/16" and 1/4" scrap from work to make thicker shims with. It's a pain to get multiple washers in there as shims. They listed a range that the boss on the water pump housings were made to. Of course mine was as small as could be. I used 2 1/4" shims to fill the void. I painted them black to help them blend in. I bought the wrong one. make sure you know which water pump housing you have. I didn't read the ad closely enough, duh on me.

View attachment 131413

When you install the compressor you'll have to either make a new throttle return spring bracket or tweak the factory one. I made a new one out of some more scrap. You'll need to make it with less angle and about 3/4" taller if your car was a factory AC car. this will make up for the bracket originally being mounted on top of the compressor bracket. You may also need to get a few shorter bolts for your intake manifold. The new less angled bracket will cause you return springs to not have as much tension on them. You may want to shorten them up a little bit. I like a firm pedal.

When I stand back and look at it I think that it turned out well. The only thing that I don't like the appearance of is the 90° fittings coming out of the compressor. I don't know how anything could've been done differently there though.

Here are some completed pictures. I'll take a few more later on.
View attachment 131416 View attachment 131415
The brake clean and denatured alcohol is Dave's (70bigblockdodge) tip, not mine.
I have no comment about the rubber hoses, because I didn't reuse any of them - Dave would be the one to comment there.
The suctioin line you can take a part so you could clean the metal part easily enough. I have no idea what is in the muffler though - same goes with the high pressure line off of the compressor.
Thanks for the thread. I am in the process of doing this upgrade on my polara and this has been extremely helpful . Did you install a low pressure compressor cut-off switch in the system?
 

thrashingcows

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I did this conversion on my 68 T/C wagon many years ago now..7 years ago??..pretty much came out the same way as John's car did. To answer Anthony's question... yes the drier gets a low system pressure switch just like the original, on the top of the drier.
 

Anthony Karbaj

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You are asking him to quantify the $ spent and publish it in a public forum where his wife can see??? C'mon man!!:rofl:
Awesome writeup. Thank you. :thumbsup:

QUESTIO

Could you be more specific on the model?

Vintage Air Sanden Air Conditioning Compressors - Sanden 508 Air Conditioning Compressor Type
How much
I did this conversion on my 68 T/C wagon many years ago now..7 years ago??..pretty much came out the same way as John's car did. To answer Anthony's question... yes the drier gets a low system pressure switch just like the original, on the top of the drier.
I did this conversion on my 68 T/C wagon many years ago now..7 years ago??..pretty much came out the same way as John's car did. To answer Anthony's question... yes the drier gets a low system pressure switch just like the original, on the top of the drier.
Thanks. What threw me off is my system didn't have a low pressure switch on the drier or anywhere else. some of the original parts are missing so I thought the switch maybe mounted somewhere else but there is no wiring for it anywhere. I am installing it on the drier and wiring in series with the cycle switch. Everything is about ready to do as soon as the condenser is returned from the shop and the hoses are crimped. Do you know how much R134 this system takes with the sanden compressor upgrade?
 

TxDon

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@live4theking , I am working on my conversion now and got a lot of great info from your threads. Just checking back to see if everything is still working and if you may have any additional thoughts or advice.
 

live4theking

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Everything worked great for several weeks then it fizzled on me. I think I need to pull the evaporator from under the dash and look it over. I didn't pull it when I did the retrofit and may have been a bit to aggressive in cleaning it with air pressure.
 

TxDon

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Everything worked great for several weeks then it fizzled on me. I think I need to pull the evaporator from under the dash and look it over. I didn't pull it when I did the retrofit and may have been a bit to aggressive in cleaning it with air pressure.
Well that sucks. I'm pretty nervous about my conversion since I also left the evaporator and flushed it but in addition I have the whole rear a/c system which I did not touch.
 

jstaples2

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Hey all -
I've been following this thread and just finished up my install/swap-out. I was about to take it down to an auto shop to have them fill the system with R134a and they wanted to know what the capacity was. I guess R12 and R134a are different weights and the shop wants to know the poundage that the system will take. Any ideas on where to start or how to figure that out? I'm at a bit of a loss.

1968 Fury III
Original A/C car
Compressor - New Sanden Style
Condensor - New Universal
Drier - New Universal
Hoses - New hoses and fittings
Evaporator/Heater - Original still under the dash
 

Ross Wooldridge

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It does matter to some degree, but it's not an exact science, so they should be able to guestimate fairly closely.

R134A goes in at roughly 55% - 65% of the original R12 charge weight.

It would be best to know how much your original system took, then they calculate from there.

They add R134A up to about 50%, then add 1/2 ounces, monitoring vent temps. Once the vent temps get low, they watch to see when they start to rise, suck a 1/2 ounce back out and you're good to go.
 
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