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Hey folks,

Just purchased my first Z Car, a '73 240Z which came without factory AC. I took it out for a few drives after receiving it and was sweating bullets - it's so hot in there! Went online, found this below aftermarket AC kit from Auto AC Solutions (which integrates with factory control panel in dash) and am considering ordering it and having my mechanic install. Before I install an aftermarket system like this, I want to get folks' thoughts on whether this is a worthwhile upgrade, if it will diminish the value of the vehicle, if it will harm the cooling system for the motor, etc...

Please share your thoughts - thanks!

Cheers,
Lucas
 

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Its your car. Don't worry about the next owner. If A/C will make you drive the car more then install the A/C. You have a cool car, make it cooler with the A/C. It may just increase the value!
 

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1983 280ZX Turbo
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Any non-Nissan modification may reduce value somewhat, including AC. But if it makes the car more valuable to you, I agree, add the AC. Just minimize the number of any modifications, holes, etc. that can't be reversed.
 

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8 / 71 240Z, HLS30-40031, L24-052899, Sunshine Yellow
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I wish I had found this Sanden SD508 compressor mount when I built my A/C.
Sanden type SD508 compressors are $79.00 up on eBay. None of them are Sanden brand.
You will need a 12” X 24” condenser.
Occasionally an original evaporator comes up for sale on Facebook Datsun & Z car groups. If you get one, put a new expansion valve. I rocked my evaporator back & forth many times to drain any R-12 oil out and then purged it with 1 can of R-134a.
There is an evaporator that mounts high in the center, inside the dash.
You have to remove the dash to install. People like it.
The original fan blower is weak. Thank you to whoever recommended this blower. It fit and works great.
Blower Motor Fits Kia Sportage 1998 1999 2000 2001 35086 61 B10 Mm-901 Pm9196 - Walmart.com
There is a wire from your fan switch that is hot whenever the fan is on.
From there, run a wire to your thermostat.
I used this one. Amazon.com
The capillary tube gets stuck into the evaporator core thru the fins.
From the thermostat, power goes thru the receiver dryer to the compressor.
You will want at least one radiator fan to come on with the A/C.
A good local auto A/C shop should be able to make the hoses, evacuate and charge it for you.
 

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Used the Auto A/C solutions kit for my recent restoration. My car had A/C when I got it but the old York compressor had seen better days. The kit I purchased worked great and service was outstanding.
 

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Current 1986 300ZX 5 speed, previous 1978 280Z, 1981 280ZX
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Its your car. Don't worry about the next owner. If A/C will make you drive the car more then install the A/C. You have a cool car, make it cooler with the A/C. It may just increase the value!
I have an 86 300ZX and would drive it more frequently if I could get the air to cool better. So my thoughts for you are to make sure it is a reliable product and if so put it in and enjoy!
 

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Current 1986 300ZX 5 speed, previous 1978 280Z, 1981 280ZX
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This post is not specifically about my model but I am glad I spotted it. I have spent a lot on trying to rehab the AC in my 86 and to me it just does not seem to cool enough. I just replaced the fan in the hope that it would blow harder and it did help some but I saw earlier in this post that there was a high performance fan available somewhere for previous Z models and am wondering if there might be one for my 86? It is converted to r134a now. Also wondering about the AC kits being mentioned in this post and will try to get more info on them. If anyone has any more info on these kits, good/bad etc, please shout it out!
 

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1983 280ZX Turbo
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This post is not specifically about my model but I am glad I spotted it. I have spent a lot on trying to rehab the AC in my 86 and to me it just does not seem to cool enough. I just replaced the fan in the hope that it would blow harder and it did help some but I saw earlier in this post that there was a high performance fan available somewhere for previous Z models and am wondering if there might be one for my 86? It is converted to r134a now. Also wondering about the AC kits being mentioned in this post and will try to get more info on them. If anyone has any more info on these kits, good/bad etc, please shout it out!
Keep in mind that R134A is a less efficient refrigerant than R12, so a system designed for R12 will have less cooling ability when converted to R134A.

That said, I have converted three vehicles from R12 to R134A and each still cooled effectively after the conversion.
 

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If I was doing a conversion I would prob pop for a parallel flow condenser. A generic unit that fits the opening. Maybe the stock unit is good enough but a PF I presume would be better.
 

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Current 1986 300ZX 5 speed, previous 1978 280Z, 1981 280ZX
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Keep in mind that R134A is a less efficient refrigerant than R12, so a system designed for R12 will have less cooling ability when converted to R134A.

That said, I have converted three vehicles from R12 to R134A and each still cooled effectively after the conversion.
You are exactly right it does not cool as well at least in my car. I believe now that it is as good as its going to get as far as cooling ability. I actually used one of the r134a charging kits last weekend and found it helped a ton so that means I have a leak. I also try to consider I have an over 30 year old car with a black/grey interior which makes it harder to keep cool. I have not tinted the windows on it as I garage it mostly so Its not a daily driver unless I need it to be. But even though this 86 was not one of the more popular years it is a ton of fun to turn on the side lights and drive it around where I live. I am the 3rd owner and have enjoyed having the car for the last 15 years. If you know of a high speed blower motor shout it out please. I intend to complete my photo album of what it looked like when I got it and what is is now soon as I can get a free weekend. Thanks
 

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I have purchased an Auto AC Solutions system (system is both heat and AC) and am in the installation process on my complete restoration project on a 73 240z. If you would like to discuss any aspects of the system or suggestions on installation, I'd be happy to let you know what I've found out thus far. Just PM me with a phone # and good time to contact you and I'd be happy to share my findings. My car originally had an ARA dealer installed system so I have a lot of those parts available (york compressor, condenser, evaporator, housing, etc) if you decide to go that route.
z3beemer (Paul)
 

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I have an 86 300ZX and would drive it more frequently if I could get the air to cool better. So my thoughts for you are to make sure it is a reliable product and if so put it in and enjoy!
what exactly is the problem you are having with your A/C? is your Z31 manual climate control or digital climate control? this will be a deciding factor, as auto climate control will set your airlfow on what the system senses it should be.
if you think yours is not fun to sit in during summer, try sitting in a 280zx in the summer time! point is, your car has a pretty good a/c system for its time, at least compared to it's older siblings. and getting another fan or a bigger fan might not really solve the issue. you might have vacuum leaks up in there, and doors and vents not operating or functioning properly, thus affecting airflow. and if you got an auto a/c and its having issues, complicate all of that by like... ten.

and I agree with you.... driving around in a Z31 can be a blast! something I dearly miss :(

Bon

- to the original poster.... I don't mean to hi-jack your thread. I just had to jump in on this one.
 

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Another option to consider is this all in one unit that will fit up under the dash over the transmission tunnel.


Its called the Gen II Mini. I'm installing the system in my ground-up '72 RestoMod. It will use the Sanden compressor and I purchased the evaporator for Z Car Depot. You can rig their controls elements to use the existing dash controls but I chose not to and instead, to just redesign the vent panel to accommodate one of their vents and their 4 dial electronic control panel. That redesign is complete and shown here:

Rectangle Communication Device Mobile phone Gadget Triangle


I'm currently in the process of arranging to get it custom CNC'd out of aluminum as I want to be able to get it powder coated to match the aluminum center console from Skillard. There are a couple of mods required to the drawing for it to be machinable. It could just as easily be 3D printed in an ABS plastic or metal for that matter, however, I'm finding that in this case metal printing is more expensive than machining. I had two other versions created as well as well as the original scan I started with. One that is just a complete blank panel that retains the original overall curved profile and another that has the top half of the panel blanked out but retains the original radio opening.
 

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Current 1986 300ZX 5 speed, previous 1978 280Z, 1981 280ZX
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what exactly is the problem you are having with your A/C? is your Z31 manual climate control or digital climate control? this will be a deciding factor, as auto climate control will set your airlfow on what the system senses it should be.
if you think yours is not fun to sit in during summer, try sitting in a 280zx in the summer time! point is, your car has a pretty good a/c system for its time, at least compared to it's older siblings. and getting another fan or a bigger fan might not really solve the issue. you might have vacuum leaks up in there, and doors and vents not operating or functioning properly, thus affecting airflow. and if you got an auto a/c and its having issues, complicate all of that by like... ten.

and I agree with you.... driving around in a Z31 can be a blast! something I dearly miss :(

Bon

- to the original poster.... I don't mean to hi-jack your thread. I just had to jump in on this one.
I'll pick this thread back up in the 84 to 89 category in the near future as to let this thread continue. thx
 
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