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Hello Folks,

I'm back to work on re-installing the Vintage Air AC in my 56. I strive to be self-sufficient, and have ordered all parts online (mostly from Summit and Vintage Air) but I am finding more situations where I would rather visit a bricks-and-mortar retailer for automotive AC parts and supplies, and perhaps some advice. Unfortunately, I am at a loss for resources for these sorts of parts. I visited several of my favorite FLAPS for recommendations but surprisingly nobody was able to provide any leads. The best I got was a place that can make up hydraulic and AC hoses but I have a crimping tool and am making all my own hoses. When I search online for 'Automotive AC parts and supplies' the results all point to businesses that either do commercial refrigeration or HVAC service.

Specifically, I need a #10 aluminum liquid line extension, with male to female O-ring fittings, 3 inches long. The attached picture is the one I have, which is 1" too long. I know I can order one from VA but frankly I don't feel like waiting a week, and I'm sure a local AC/HVAC vendor with the right tools could whip one up in a few hours.

So my question is...is automotive AC service/maintenance considered a separate entity from residential/commercial HVAC/refrigeration service? Where do I turn when seeking these sort of parts?

More specifically, does anyone know of a source for these sorts of parts in the San Francisco Bay Area?

Thanks in advance!
321223
 

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I get my AC fittings from the local NAPA store it is normally next day delivery from the local warehouse. If your lucky your store may still have an AC parts print catalog.
 

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So my question is...is automotive AC service/maintenance considered a separate entity from residential/commercial HVAC/refrigeration service? Where do I turn when seeking these sort of parts?
The main difference between automotive and the others is that automotive often uses aluminum tube and fittings and the others do not. Also automotive has its preferred fittings, even if steel, and its own hoses. In fact the others tend to avoid hoses.

I found a source near me who had both standard and custom hose and fittings for automotive a/c and brakes. I first found them through my work efforts which were in industrial hydraulics. He'd sell you whatever you wanted, either parts or custom assemblies. HIs product line was a fairly unique mix for this type of business, and I think he did the "hot rod" stuff as much because he liked hot rods as any other reason. There has to be a similar supplier in the Bay area but I have no idea how you find them.
 

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I know these guys can whip up custom hoses but I'm not sure about fittings, maybe give them a shout? They are in San Leandro.

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Another difference is that residential and commercial have moved on to different refrigerants while automotive is still on 134a. Ken - I would be surprised if there wasn't at least one A/P store with a fair supply and warehouse connection of fittings. That may not mean that the fitting you describe will necessarily be available, however. I had an issue on a previous build that could have been solved by a fitting I couldn't locate. Solved it by a shorter length of hose and a section of the bendable tubing that Vintage Air sells....but then you're back to waiting a few days... :unsure: Good luck!
JR
 

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I get my AC fittings from the local NAPA store it is normally next day delivery from the local warehouse. If your lucky your store may still have an AC parts print catalog.
Unfortunately this isn't a factory AC system or else I would do just that!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The main difference between automotive and the others is that automotive often uses aluminum tube and fittings and the others do not. Also automotive has its preferred fittings, even if steel, and its own hoses. In fact the others tend to avoid hoses.
Rick, your observation is spot on.

The auto AC thing is apparently highly specialized...I ran my a$$ off this morning hitting up every possible automotive/industrial source in a twenty-mile radius, no dice. Plenty of places will make up hoses, but nada that will fab up a #10 3" o-ring male-to-female aluminum AC liquid line extension.

And I guess that they've heard these requests before, since three of the industrial suppliers referred me to either Old Air or Vintage Air. Nothing even remotely local.
 

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I know these guys can whip up custom hoses but I'm not sure about fittings, maybe give them a shout? They are in San Leandro.
Hello Jose,

I tried but no luck. They were one of the outfits that referred me to Old Air or Vintage Air.:confused:
 

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Another difference is that residential and commercial have moved on to different refrigerants while automotive is still on 134a. Ken - I would be surprised if there wasn't at least one A/P store with a fair supply and warehouse connection of fittings. That may not mean that the fitting you describe will necessarily be available, however. I had an issue on a previous build that could have been solved by a fitting I couldn't locate. Solved it by a shorter length of hose and a section of the bendable tubing that Vintage Air sells....but then you're back to waiting a few days... :unsure: Good luck!
JR
Believe me, I tried to come up with some sort of hose solution, especially since I have the hose, fittings, and crimper on hand, but it just wouldn't work with my older Gen III (cable-operated) VA unit.

I'll just order it from VA and work on something else while I'm waiting.

Can't say I didn't try. ;)
 

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Hello Folks,

I'm back to work on re-installing the Vintage Air AC in my 56. I strive to be self-sufficient, and have ordered all parts online (mostly from Summit and Vintage Air) but I am finding more situations where I would rather visit a bricks-and-mortar retailer for automotive AC parts and supplies, and perhaps some advice. Unfortunately, I am at a loss for resources for these sorts of parts. I visited several of my favorite FLAPS for recommendations but surprisingly nobody was able to provide any leads. The best I got was a place that can make up hydraulic and AC hoses but I have a crimping tool and am making all my own hoses. When I search online for 'Automotive AC parts and supplies' the results all point to businesses that either do commercial refrigeration or HVAC service.

Specifically, I need a #10 aluminum liquid line extension, with male to female O-ring fittings, 3 inches long. The attached picture is the one I have, which is 1" too long. I know I can order one from VA but frankly I don't feel like waiting a week, and I'm sure a local AC/HVAC vendor with the right tools could whip one up in a few hours.

So my question is...is automotive AC service/maintenance considered a separate entity from residential/commercial HVAC/refrigeration service? Where do I turn when seeking these sort of parts?

More specifically, does anyone know of a source for these sorts of parts in the San Francisco Bay Area?

Thanks in advance! View attachment 321223
Believe me, I tried to come up with some sort of hose solution, especially since I have the hose, fittings, and crimper on hand, but it just wouldn't work with my older Gen III (cable-operated) VA unit.

I'll just order it from VA and work on something else while I'm waiting.

Can't say I didn't try. ;)
Most owners don’t know that Vintage Air will make the hoses for you when you buy the hose and fittings from them.
That was the route I took when I had some leaks and eliminated the hardlines. You need to tell them how to clock the fittings.
They don’t charge anything for the service. I did get all my leaks resolved with the new hoses and o-rings.
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Most owners don’t know that Vintage Air will make the hoses for you when you buy the hose and fittings from them.
That was the route I took when I had some leaks and eliminated the hardlines. You need to tell them how to clock the fittings.
They don’t charge anything for the service. I did get all my leaks resolved with the new hoses and o-rings.
Dave
I'm working with them as we speak. I must say I have always been pleasantly surprised by their customer service, especially since I am not the original purchaser of this system.
 

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Unfortunately this isn't a factory AC system or else I would do just that!
Your AC install does not need to be factory to get AC fittings @ NAPA they carry all of the universal fittings, bulk hose, crimp sleeves etc as well as factory stock fittings. Let me know what male / female thread sizes, flare / "O" ring, hose sizes etc you need I will try to find them for you in my NAPA print catalog & give you the part # (s).
Does anyone in you car club have an AC hose crimper? If not they may be available as a tool rental or set up the hoses / fittings & take them to a shop that services automotive AC to get the fittings crimped. I have crimped a number of AC hoses for DIY walk in customers.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Churchkey,

Thanks for the reply. I appreciate your assistance.

From my first post:

I have a crimping tool and am making all my own hoses.
I need a #10 aluminum liquid line extension, with male to female O-ring fittings, 3 inches long.
Just like the one in the picture:
321309
20200801_180259.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Churchkey,

If I could fabricate a hose I would, but end-to-end the minimum length of the hose including the two beadlock fittings would be longer than 3".
 

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check your local area for a radiator repair shop. not many left around, but most specialized in radiators, heaters and a/c. when i worked at one years ago we made hose assemblys for ac.
 

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SWAG:
Cut the barbs off of suggested fittings to the required overall length & TIG them together.

I use #10 or #12 hose for suction, #8 for pressure, #6 for liquid.
Luck with your project.
 
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