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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Working on restoring my 1983 Celica Supra P-type. The air conditioning system has been mostly removed by previous owners except for the evaporator coil, and the dash controls. I realize this is a broad question, but has anyone had success adapting a more modern or even aftermarket (or used out of a more common different vehicle) A/C system into our cars and making use of the factory dash controls, vents, etc. Or is it better to just buy whatever is available new (compressor, etc) and try to find original parts in decent condition and hope I can get it all working?? Trying to source out all that missing stuff seems like a daunting task! And maybe really expensive too....I live in Louisiana and the summers are brutally hot, so A/C would be a big plus for the summer enjoyment of the car.
Appreciate any advice or suggestions on this!

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Jim King did that with his AC kits years ago. Those are definitely unobtanium these days though. The easiest way to do it is to just buy a rebuilt compressor for the engine you have. They make generic AC condenser and driers you can use. The hoses use standard AC fitting so if you find a shop with the correct crimpers its easy enough to replace the hose.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Jim King did that with his AC kits years ago. Those are definitely unobtanium these days though. The easiest way to do it is to just buy a rebuilt compressor for the engine you have. They make generic AC condenser and driers you can use. The hoses use standard AC fitting so if you find a shop with the correct crimpers its easy enough to replace the hose.
Appreciate the info, SilverMk2. But what about all the specialty bits, valves, sensors, even new condensers.... etc? Can they be got?? I guess the real nature of my question is, is there anything that would prevent one from removing the air conditioning system from, for example, a small Toyota truck that is "a dime a dozen" and adapting it to work in a Mk2 Supra??

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Problem you'll have is many newer cars have much taller radiators. Not to mention all the time you'll spend in junkyards trying things over and over. I'm suggesting you use something like these:


That's pretty close in size to the one I have in my car from memory. You can buy generic driers and sensors like these:



Honestly it's a lot cheaper and easier probably just to give someone online a couple of hundred bucks for all the stock stuff.
 

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There's really not much in the engine bay in the way of sensors or electronics for the AC refrigerant system. As I recall, there's only the clutch on/off. There's a pressure switch, but its in the evaporator core on the Supra so yours may still be there. Everything else is mechanical/plumbing. Our system uses regulated "throttle" of sorts on the passenger side fender well to prevent freeze up. I've forgotten what that darned thing is called but last summer I think I boxed up two or three of them along with probably a half dozen compressors when Maurice came and got the inventory so you might message him.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
There's really not much in the engine bay in the way of sensors or electronics for the AC refrigerant system. As I recall, there's only the clutch on/off. There's a pressure switch, but its in the evaporator core on the Supra so yours may still be there. Everything else is mechanical/plumbing. Our system uses regulated "throttle" of sorts on the passenger side fender well to prevent freeze up. I've forgotten what that darned thing is called but last summer I think I boxed up two or three of them along with probably a half dozen compressors when Maurice came and got the inventory so you might message him.
That's reassuring to know that it's achievable. Guess I better start hunting and acquiring the parts asap, or I'll be left out in the "heat"! And I think the gizmo you're referring to is the pressure regulator "EPR". I'm still constantly learning about these cars, totally obsessed. Thanks for the input!


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EPR, as in Evaporator Pressure Regulator.
My car came without condensor, hoses, EPR and dryer. I replaced all that, and the in car expansion valve (because it's control line to the EPR had been cut). System was recharged and working for few months, but has a leak somewhere around the condensor.
So yes, it is possible.
 

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You're better off getting rid of the EPR. Modern cars don't have anything like it. They use a temp sensor in the evaporator that cycles the compressor when it gets down near freezing. I got lucky and probably bought one of the last new ones from Toyota a few years back. That rubber diaphram in the middle can crack after all these years and leak. The Lexus LS400 has a similar looking EPR so you might be able to buy one of those to salvage the internal parts to rebuild a MK2 one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Very useful info! Once again, thanks for all the great advice, guys! I would be lost without the internet and especially this forum.

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This past summer I got my A/C working just by having the shop evacuate the system, and install R-134. A/C works well enough here in NJ, but I'm sure it is not as cold as it would be with the old R-12. Just FYI, for when you get all the parts collected and installed.
Good Luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
This past summer I got my A/C working just by having the shop evacuate the system, and install R-134. A/C works well enough here in NJ, but I'm sure it is not as cold as it would be with the old R-12. Just FYI, for when you get all the parts collected and installed.
Good Luck
Thanks!

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Any open AC system for a period of time will likely be compromised.

Most common, the evaporator connectors were left open at the firewall, as many owners removed the AC for weight savings.

In 2019, some MK2 owner's significant other's really expressed they do not want to ride in a MK2 with no AC. :)
(not the first time they mentioned it)

I did some preliminary investigation in kit parts availability back in January 2020. Then this weird thing happened in March...

As noted, the EPR has it's purpose. Only usable if the rubber diaphragm is still good. Back in the day, most in the boneyards in the North East, actually were still usable.
Just needed new o-rings. Though the simpler solution is a evaporator temperature switch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Any open AC system for a period of time will likely be compromised.

Most common, the evaporator connectors were left open at the firewall, as many owners removed the AC for weight savings.

In 2019, some MK2 owner's significant other's really expressed they do not want to ride in a MK2 with no AC. :)
(not the first time they mentioned it)

I did some preliminary investigation in kit parts availability back in January 2020. Then this weird thing happened in March...

As noted, the EPR has it's purpose. Only usable if the rubber diaphragm is still good. Back in the day, most in the boneyards in the North East, actually were still usable.
Just needed new o-rings. Though the simpler solution is a evaporator temperature switch.
Thanks for the info jdk_ii !

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