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  1. #1

    Default SVO A/C Retrofit 2.3L

    It looks like my SVO is ready for getting the compressor and lines from a '93 2.3L.

    The dryer / accumulator from the has either a barbed or beadlock fitting, it matches Turbocoupe's so it can use the pressure switch from it.

    The compressor for the '93 has a bracket which fits the block, and comes with the serpentine v-belt and a belt tensioner. It looks about the same size and shape as the factory 85 compressor.

    It accepts a two terminal plug clutch switch.

    The condenser from the '93 should bolt right up.

    The lines between each of them are still available for the '93. In fact I can buy a line with the dryer already attached.

    Now, I'm running an LA3 so I can accept the pressure switch signal that fits on the dryer.

    I've done the serpentine belt retrofit already as well.

    The compressor is already R134a compatible.

    I was really freaked out when Hose Wizards stopped selling their kit, but to be honest it looks like for my case it was good I didn't go with them anyway.

    With a pulley conversion, I wonder if there is any need for a special built kit...

    I'm many months out from trying this out, but optimistic.

  2. #2
    FEP Supporter
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Alberta, Canada


    Please keep us posted.

  3. #3


    Well things have gotten a bit more interesting on the interior as well...

    I went to a local shop to see if they could just refurbish the HVAC control system. The HVAC controls are nearly impossible to find in-tact, and hooking them up is a nightmare.

    Well, it turns out that I'm not as incapable as I thought. Sure, it is something that is beyond me at this point, but relatively speaking I'm not worse than they are.

    But they pointed to me to Classic Air, which does have a team which will refurbish the heater box ... if it was an 87-93. They will replace the vacuum actuators, and everything else in or on the box, to make it like new. But they won't touch the disintegrating HVAC controls from what I gathered. Feel free to see if your negotiating skills are better than mine on this.

    Classic Air also has another division which works much like Vintage air, they have a new box and new controls that I can retrofit on the inside. The box is microcontroller controlled, and only needs a few wires between the controls and the microcontroller to work.

    But then the ready-fit 93 compressors and plumbing wouldn't work anymore.

    So I think I'm going to do a compromise...

    The electronic controls are just slide and rotary potentiometers that adjust linear actuators on the doors between the hot/cold and floor / vent / defrost. Why don't I just retrofit the vacuum actuators with linear actuators and run them with an Arduino? Why don't I just get a DC motor driver to control the fan speed with an Arduino PWM signal instead of the resister bank?

    Then I could also brag with Vintage Air that everything is "infinitely adjustable". I could easily make a anodized aluminum plate to with slide-pots to look mostly like the original, and honestly it might be less work overall than trying to get the factory system to work again.

    All I need is a donor heater box...

  4. #4
    FEP Power Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    San Mateo, CA


    The hvac controls can be found used. They actually seem to be repairable as just the bracket breaks. A bracket could be fabricated to fit over the old one.

    On another note. The slide mechanism controls 3 vacuum signals. They could be controlled by electro valves and 3 switches.
    Fox Body/3rd Gen MCA Gold Card Judge
    84 SVO 24K miles, 85 Mclaren Capri Vert. 84 GT Turbo Vert.
    88 Mclaren Mustang Vert 20K miles, 89 Mustang LX Sport Vert,
    03 Mach 1 7900 miles, 74 Mustang II, 69 Mustang, 67 Mustang, 14 Mustang CS/GT,
    15 F150 FTX Tuscany, 16 F250 Crewcab, 67 Tbird 47K miles

  5. #5


    I have a few of them I've found used. All of them needed fixing. Happy to sell them too.

    In contacting many who are parting out for five or so years, I've only acquired two (out of more than 20 attempts) and none that wouldn't require a near miraculous welding or fabricating of tabs, brackets onto deteriorating unglueable plastic, etc...

    As I understand it, the three vacuum lines work three doors that open the dash / underdash / defrost vents are controlled by one slide which opens the vacuum through the right vacuum line based on specific position.

    I'm still talking from memory, but the heater core / AC evaporator diverter door is a mechanical cable and is the hot/cold control.

    And then a three position switch puts the fan voltage through three different resisters to control the fan speed.

    Technically, we could mimic that off/on or stepped behavior exactly with multi-position switches and actuators that run full open or full closed. Or use the ranges in the potentiometer to act like an indicator of switch position location and have it handled by the microprocessor accordingly.

    With the potentiometer, you have the benefit of blending the logic, opening and closing doors as the voltage increases across different ranges.

    I think that is how Vintage and Classic Air both do their systems. I think it is just easier.

  6. #6


    I did this conversion on my 1983 Capri RS Turbo... I started with a NON-AIR car. Pulled the dash and swapped the heater box. I ended up with a heater box from a 1988 Mustang. I was able to get the dryer and hose assembly for an 88 Turbo Coupe (I couldn't find one for the 1983 Capri RS Turbo or an 84-86 SVO). Although the dryer was a different part number and is shaped a bit different the the SVO it went into place just fine. My compressor was also off an 85 NON-Turbo 2.3 but it went onto the 2.3 Turbo block just the same. I did have to get a pulley for an A/C car for the water pump (it has 3 groves). The only line I could not find new was the line that runs from the compressor to the condenser.

    The controls are a bit hard to come by but I was able to find one. I would recommend looking at for a heater box from an 1984 to 1986 and then call and ask if they have the control. I think there are some out there but they are for sure not easy to find. In my car all the wiring was there, waiting to be plugged in - there wasn't anything tricky about it. I just recently acquired 2 cans of R12 and after vacuuming it down charged it. Its not full but it does put out cold air. Good luck!

  7. #7


    That is really good to hear. So the 88 heater box fit the duct vents on the 83?

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