The A/C condenser is from Vintage Air, but the universal brackets that were provided weren’t going to work with the radiator support that I made. I decided to make up some tabs welded to the top and bottom radiator support channels. A few configurations were tried, and the best fit was to have the tabs mounted flush with the channel leg and the condenser bolted to the front of the tab. This gave the correct gap between the condenser and the radiator.
The tabs were welded to the support channel, ground down, and finished off with a radiused edge. There are still a few weld craters to fill in, but okay just for mock-up. The tabs were drilled and tapped for 8-32 screws installed from the back of the tab. Last photo shows the completed tabs with the condenser mounted.
First photo shows the water pump boss being milled down. All four bosses were machined in order to true-up the surfaces and make them all the same. There is one long bolt and three short bolts that mount the water pump. The three short bolts need a spacer between the idler bracket and the water pump bosses. The last two photos show the finished idler bracket bolted in place. With the new blower pulleys, the v-belts, idler pulley and blower belt now all fit correctly.
I found a different style of idler bracket which mounts the pulley lower than the original blower case mounted bracket. This one from Hot Heads mounts to the front of the engine block and uses the same through-bolts for the BBC water pump. The first photo shows the new bracket in place and the compressor v-belt installed to check for fit-up. The second photo shows that the idler bracket extends out past the inner “vee” of the water pump pulley. Although the inner belt for the alternator is below the bracket and does not directly interfere, I decided to machine the water pump boss down a little in order to move the idler bracket inward towards the block.
The new bracket not only drops the idler pulley down, but moves it out further that the original location. This necessitated getting smaller diameter top and bottom blower belt pulleys (in the same ratio) in order to make the belt fit correctly. One change always leads to at least three others….
The first two photos show the dual v-belt setup to drive the accessories. The inner belt is crank/water pump/alternator, and the outer belt is crank/water pump/compressor. A thin shim was required under the water pump pulley to line up all of the pulleys correctly.
The last photo shows the interference between the compressor belt and the blower belt idler pulley and bracket. After thorough investigation, it was decided that another type of idler bracket would be needed.
Here’s the A/C compressor. It’s a Sanden 508 with the rear exit ports. The regular 508 compressor has the top-mount suction/discharge ports, which would be a problem with hood clearance. The compressor bracket is from Hot Heads. It is probably the only one available for mounting an aftermarket compressor to an early Hemi. The compressor mounts above the right valve cover and is bolted to the right cylinder head. The bracket sandwiches between the head and the water crossover.
Also seen in the third and fourth photos is the blower belt idler pulley and bracket, which is going to cause trouble with the compressor v-belt fit-up. I’ll cover the fix in another post.