I'm looking at a '69 SS (to purchase) (350HP). It has no A/C. Is there a good system to add that will prove effective? Or should I just keep looking until I find one with factory Air.
In Texas, it's not a minor detail!
Vintage Air in San Antonio sells complete kits for cars that don't have factory air. The kit for a Chevelle was about $1000. last time I checked.
They include everything you would need for a clean, looks factory,installation. There number is 1-800-TO-COOL-U. There are also several others that sell similar kits, check advertising in the chevy magazines.
Don't buy a non air vehicle and install Factory Air. It's possible but extremely difficult and expensive. There are many many differences in air and non-air cars from the factory. The Vintage Air system is made to work with the factory non-air controls, vents etc. Just my humble opinion. Good Luck with your hunt for the right vehicle.
72 El Camino
ACES # 00140
If you want to stick with an original factory system, try finding a parts car with the complete set up. There's a lot you have to change to make it work, but if you get a parts car, it will make installation easier.
I just did this 3years ago to my 80 k/10 pick up. It was a project, but it works great!If you cant find a chevelle parts car, try a 70 -72 MonteCarlo or 73-80 chevy truck.
The compressor, brackets, pulleys& belts are the same.
In the "technical reference" section, there is an article on the installation of a Vintage Air kit (I wrote it and also the November Chevy High Performance article).
The installation was in my 64 2 door wagon.
I'm very happy and impressed with the kit!
One thing that I'm not sure about is if Vintage has a "sure fit" kit for the 69 Chevelles. It's the "sure fit" kits that hook up to the factory controls. If their catalog doesn't list one, CALL and verify it!
In my mind, trying to convert to factory air just isn't realistic due to problems finding ALL the parts you need. I'm pretty sure that there are differences in the firewall!
Hi Gerald. The factory air cars also have tinted glass to ease the cooling load. This is a factor to consider as most chevelles just had clear. Not an easy or cheap thing to change.
I'm with Wes on this one. I started putting air in a car from a donor and changed my mind. Firewall, dash, controls, wiring, rad, shrouds, heck, even the battery terminals are swapped on a (67) with air.
I've done a number of factory A/C conversions on Chevelles and Camaros. It's a major project, the firewalls are completely different under the evaporator housing. I made templates out of firewalls from factory A/C cars. You have to replace all kinds of stuff, like Al says. It's much easier on later cars that had Flow-Through ventilation (no wing windows).
IMO, plan on running aftermarket A/C or waiting to find the right car. It would be difficult to even find anybody who could be trusted to complete this job cleanly on a nice car.
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