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Old 07-08-2013, 02:51 PM
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A/C mock-up - bending alum piping

'34 Ford coupe.

So, it's time to fit some A/C pipe. I'd like to avoid "rubber hose is good for everything, everywhere" syndrome under the hood.

Can you post a picture of some A/C and heater plumbing that you feel looks better than average? I don't need to emulate a Riddler winner, but I'd like to consider some ideas that I won't think of myself.

Can anyone recommend a bender that will bend #6, 8 10 aluminum piping?
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:33 PM
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Mitchman, I found myself in the same boat a few years ago. Didn't want black rubber but couldn't afford stainless braid and all the associated fittings. So I sprung for about $150 worth of -10,-8 & -6 annealed aluminum tubing. After I ruined all that tubing I saved up and bought the Stainless braided hose and fittings I should have used in the first place.
I think when you look up Hot Rod in the dictionary it should say: "a very expensive way to learn how to do things"
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by evolvo View Post
Mitchman, I found myself in the same boat a few years ago. Didn't want black rubber but couldn't afford stainless braid and all the associated fittings. So I sprung for about $150 worth of -10,-8 & -6 annealed aluminum tubing. After I ruined all that tubing I saved up and bought the Stainless braided hose and fittings I should have used in the first place.
I think when you look up Hot Rod in the dictionary it should say: "a very expensive way to learn how to do things"
Oh, that looks nice. ....Maybe.....

How'd you ruin the aluminum tubing?
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:20 PM
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Keep in mind,,, The motor move's a little under a load,,, Hard lines might give you some trouble down the road... Just something to think about... Seen a lot of cars done with hard lines, But this was on Show cars, And not drivers..
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:32 PM
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Keep in mind,,, The motor move's a little under a load,,, Hard lines might give you some trouble down the road... Just something to think about... Seen a lot of cars done with hard lines, But this was on Show cars, And not drivers..
I know. The hard lines will be entering the body and run along the frame. Gotta admit, this looks good with 2 small lengths of rubber showing.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:35 PM
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Yeah,,, But it can be ran the same way with the rubber lines when planned out right..To look good..Good luck with what you decide to do..
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:20 PM
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Oh, that looks nice. ....Maybe.....

How'd you ruin the aluminum tubing?
Well, the short answer is that I bent it in the wrong place and once that happens it can't be re-straightened. Just doesn't look right anymore.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:50 PM
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Aluminium work hardens really quickly. It also has no fatigue limit.

What fatigue limit means is this. Steel alloys, if bent an amount below the fatigue limit, will not crack and break. Think about valve springs on a car, with 200,000 miles. How many times were the springs bent, and relaxed, without breaking?

Aluminium, even if only bent a little, think vibration, will work harden, then break.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:02 AM
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the easy way to do AC is to use E-Z Loc hose and fitting. These are available at the automotive AC parts stores . They usually service truck stuff too.

This hose and fitting uses a smaller OD hose ODand it is is much more flexible. The neat thing is that you purchase a $55 plier crimping device and do all the crimping yourself. Each fitting comes with the crimp gage built in so you just push the hose on and bottom it out and crimp the 2 bands on the fitting. If you should mess up the gage bands you can get replacements. another feature is that after crimping you can turn the fitting....especially handy with angled fittings.

Also you can get soft aluminum lines with AN fittings alread installed. these bend very easily and they come in various lengths. If you really want to be cool use your original aluminum tubing to get the correct bend before you bend the good stuff.

I use the aluminum tubes to get the condenser hoses in a more direct position then attach the hoses to these.

Also available are various prebent aluminum lines for the compressor.

I much prefer to hide the compressor in the wheel well and run hoses and lines along the outside of the frame. This keeps this mess away from the engine area.

Here is a link to the mfg. there should be a distributor near you. Look on page 2 of tools for the pliers.

EZ Clip A/C Hose and Fittings -
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Old 07-10-2013, 04:55 AM
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I agree with Bentwings. I used the Aeroquip E-Z Clip hose and fittings on my Willys project and they were easy to use and look good too. I've detailed their use in my project journal here:

Hot Rod Photo Journal - steve392's Journal

Look at entries 179-183 to see how I laid out the A/C system.

Steve
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Old 07-10-2013, 06:19 AM
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I agree with Bentwings. I used the Aeroquip E-Z Clip hose and fittings on my Willys project and they were easy to use and look good too. I've detailed their use in my project journal here:

Hot Rod Photo Journal - steve392's Journal

Look at entries 179-183 to see how I laid out the A/C system.

Steve
Wow, I've got to get to work, but I can see that I'm going to be saving some photos for future reference. I rally like the aluminum clamps running down the side of the engine.

I see you also installed Vintage's Compac unit. Tight fit, but I've been in a coupe with one installed and you could hang meat in the cockpit.

Thanks.
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:16 AM
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INHO an overuse os stainless braided tubing under the hood is very tacky. Preformed pre-crimped AC hoses are far easier to work with and look better.

Vince
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