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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
As part of my 24 Hours of Lemons build, my plan is to use the A/C condensor as one big ATF cooler. In order to make this happen, I need to either bypass the existing transmission cooler in the radiator or daisy chain it. Since this is an endurance race and I'm not concerned about the ATF being too cold.

Basically, besides hose, I need 4 connectors and I'd appreciate it if you guys could help answer my questions as to how to describe them to the auto parts store or buy them online. I reviewed the DIY http://www.tccoa.com/articles/tranny/cooler.html but I have a few questions and just want confirmation on a few other things

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I'll need some connector that will attach to the existing ATF hoses.
Something like this should work and should be available from Lowes/Home Depot/Ace hardware, right?
According to one of the DIYs, I need to just cut the hard lines and use a 5/16" compression fitting to 3/8" NPT barb, right?

Q: That would be this, right?

http://www.etrailer.com/Accessories-and-Parts/Derale/D13031.html?feed=npn

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Q: What size of high temp hose should I run for this application?
The DIY suggests 3/8" high temp hose. OK?

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To go to/from the AC Condensor, I need 2 female "spring-lock" to NPT

I believe this is a pic of what I would be looking for but I need to know the size before I track down this product


Q: What diameter is the spring lock? I believe they are described as #6, #8, #10, or #12 spring locks. I measured the female connector and it had the following measurements:
12.9mm OD before the lip
15.5mm OD at the lip


http://www.uacparts.com/catalog/homepage/Search/FT/Fittings_Springlock.html#female barb straight
or maybe something like this with an adapter?
http://www.deepdiscountdirect.com/catalog.asp?prodid=629373&showprevnext=1

Q: Or, am I better off just cutting the end off the A/C lines and finding some appropriate compression fitting (just as suggested for the to/from ATF hoses?
Example, I could go from 1/2" compression to 3/8" NPT...

1/2 Compression to 1/2" Male Pipe Thread
http://www.hardwareandtools.com/Anderson-Metal-750068-0808-1-2Cmpx1-2Mpt-Connector-u122928.html

+
1/2 Female Pipe Thread to 3/8" Barb
http://www.rebelbrewer.com/shoppingcart/products/1{47}2"-FPT-to-1{47}2"-Barb-Stainless.html


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Am I on the right track here?
Thanks in advance for your replies.
-g
 

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When I added my cooler, I just slipped the rubber hose over the existing transmission line flare end & double-clamped it. It CAN'T pull that hose over the metal line because of the flare.
 

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When I added my cooler, I just slipped the rubber hose over the existing transmission line flare end & double-clamped it. It CAN'T pull that hose over the metal line because of the flare.
I did the same thing and it failed on the road....dumped 5 qts before I could shut it down.

I recommend a proper hardline fitting like you plan above. Also recommend a secure mounting point for the connection so it doesn't move around.
 

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I did the same thing and it failed on the road....dumped 5 qts before I could shut it down.

I recommend a proper hardline fitting like you plan above. Also recommend a secure mounting point for the connection so it doesn't move around.
What happened? What failed? Mine has been like that over two years without issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Its nice to hear that I'm on the right track.
However, what's the size of the equivalent female plug for the spring lock I need (#6, #8, #10, #12) or do I really need to cut the A/C hoses?
-g
 

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Well I double clamped a 3/8" hose onto my stock cut off and not flared 5/16" lines and it worked great for 5-6 years until the car was wrecked. On the new car, my cooler allowed me to select the fittings to use, so I ran 5/16" transmission cooler hose all the way. My new car also has the hoses double clamped onto the un-flared tubing.

On one cooler install, the cooler had 3/8" barbs and the truck transmission lines were 5/16" So I got one of those compression fittings for 5/16" tube and the other side was female NPT thread. I was able to put 3/8" cooler hose onto it then with a 3/8" barb/male NPT fitting.

You should just use transmission cooler hose for this application, imo. Also, I have heard in the past that you cant use the newer condensers for transmission coolers because they dont flow well enough, but supposedly the older fin & tube style condensers will work. I dont know if there is any truth to this, but a dirt track racer told me that, lol :) Let me know if you have heard otherwise.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well I double clamped a 3/8" hose onto my stock cut off and not flared 5/16" lines and it worked great for 5-6 years until the car was wrecked. On the new car, my cooler allowed me to select the fittings to use, so I ran 5/16" transmission cooler hose all the way. My new car also has the hoses double clamped onto the un-flared tubing.

On one cooler install, the cooler had 3/8" barbs and the truck transmission lines were 5/16" So I got one of those compression fittings for 5/16" tube and the other side was female NPT thread. I was able to put 3/8" cooler hose onto it then with a 3/8" barb/male NPT fitting.

You should just use transmission cooler hose for this application, imo. Also, I have heard in the past that you cant use the newer condensers for transmission coolers because they dont flow well enough, but supposedly the older fin & tube style condensers will work. I dont know if there is any truth to this, but a dirt track racer told me that, lol :) Let me know if you have heard otherwise.
Define newer?
Last I checked, this car is 17 years old and the design dates back over 20...
:)

I'll let you know what I figure out.

Unless I can find an appropriate Springlock -> 3/8" barb adapter for a viable price, I'm going to re-purpose the A/C lines and cut the ends off. this should (need to confirm) leave me with 1/2" metal pipe on which i can use a 1/2" compression fitting.

A quick trip to a hardware store yielded the following bits/options:

* Cut off A/C hoses to make female Springlock -> 1/2" metal pipe adapters
Buy (2) 1/2" Compression Nut (to 1/2" FPT) $3.98
Buy (2) 3/8" Barb to 1/2" MPT $11.18
Total for A/C condensor => new hose adapters $15.16

Buy 3/8" high temp hose x 5ft (however much I need) TBD

Cut existing ATF cooling lines to make engine -> 5/16" metal pipe
Buy (2) 5/16" compression Nuts (to 5/16" FPT) $3.58
Buy (2) 5/16" Flare (male) to 1/4" FPT $3.98
Buy (2) 3/8" Barb to 1/4" MPT adapter $6.58
Total cost for Engine => new hose adapters $14.14

Possible Option:
Buy (1) 5/16"" pipe joiner. Essentially 2 comp nuts plus a male-male adapter.
Separate into:
- 5/16" compression nut to 1/4" MPT (confirm threading on the male-male adapter)
- 5/16"" compression nut to 1/4"" FPT (confirm threading on the male-male adapter)
$3.99 for set
Buy (1) 3/8" Barb to 1/4" MPT adapter $3.29
Buy (1) 3/8" Barb to 1/4" FPT adapter $3.29
Total for this Option $10.57

Scenario 1 Total $29.30
Scenario 2 Total $25.73


If I can buy the springlock -> barb adapter for less than $10, it'll be worth it (esp if one of you guys will buy my AC bits come summer).

Q: Any ideas on where I can take the A/C hoses for comparison?
I don't know if what an A/C specialty store would be called.

Regards,
-g
 

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don't use compression nuts on the atf lines, jut go buy 2 of the longest lengths you can find and they will come with nuts on the ends.
Alan
 

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Maybe I misunderood what you are wanting. I have to say I would fab something up. I am certain I could take a small piece of copper tubing swage the end to fit then braze it on and put a bubble flare on it to hook the lines to.
Alan
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Maybe I misunderood what you are wanting. I have to say I would fab something up. I am certain I could take a small piece of copper tubing swage the end to fit then braze it on and put a bubble flare on it to hook the lines to.
Alan
Alan:
One one end, I'll need a female spring lock to attach to the male springlock fitting on the A/C condensor.

On the other end, I need to hook it up to the existing lines. The DIY says to cut it back a bit but if I understand you correctly, you are proposing to redirect the lines around from the right side of the radiator over to the top left (where the condensor connectors sit), right?

1) I'm not sure which end you mean to "swage to fit". Are you saying to make your own female spring lock by with a swage tool to force the metal open?

On the other side, you mention running using a bubble flare. I'm trying to understand where you think I should run this line since the existing ATF lines already have some kind of nipple with a nut that goes over it. Do you mean to suggest I abandon the factory hard lines altogether and attach my newly created lines straight into the engine?

Q: Did I understand your advice correctly?

One thought:
If your concern is that compression fittings will NOT effectively hold the pressure of the ATF fluid (and will give out before the hose being pushed over 3/8" barb and hoseclamped), one solution would be to attach the stub of the metal pipes and silver braze the connector onto the pipe.

If your concern is that BOTH the compression fittings AND the rubber hose over the pipes will give out, well, I guess I could silver measure, bend, and silver solder the appropriate connections onto it.


Thanks again for your advice.
 

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Compression fitings are just expensive. They are also prone to leakage I avoid them whenever possible. I was sugesting to make your own adapter and braze or silversolder it on that way you do notneed the spring clip. I undertand the budget on this car (not for the sake of being cheap but for the rules) and every penny counts.
Alan
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Compression fitings are just expensive. They are also prone to leakage I avoid them whenever possible. I was sugesting to make your own adapter and braze or silversolder it on that way you do notneed the spring clip. I undertand the budget on this car (not for the sake of being cheap but for the rules) and every penny counts.
Alan
Alan:
Any comments on Brass vs. zinc plated vs. SS fittings?
Brass fittings seem to be rated to 1K PSI and 250F,
Zinc plated steel is good for 6K PSI and 500F,
and it goes up from there. Price also goes up accordingly from what I can see from grainger.com

Since the max rating likely has margin in it, would running brass be an ok idea, a mediocre idea, or a really really bad one?
 

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I talked with my radiator supplier yesterday about using a condenser for a transmission cooler and he said "Yes, just the old ones" I asked if he was talking about fin & tube and he said yes. The newer style ones supposedly create a pressure drop across the cooler. I just thought I would throw that out there.
 

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What happened? What failed? Mine has been like that over two years without issue.
The hose slipped off. After about 4 yrs.

I think it's a shoddy way to fix it to begin with. I did it because it was easier than doing it right and I was lazy. I posted about it when it happened too....hoped done else would benefit from my lesson too.
 

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The hose slipped off. After about 4 yrs.

I think it's a shoddy way to fix it to begin with. I did it because it was easier than doing it right and I was lazy. I posted about it when it happened too....hoped done else would benefit from my lesson too.
Yeh, I did it because I didn't have the proper nipple & tube at the time. If anything ever happens to mine (which I am sure it will eventually), I will install the proper PI Nipple & Tube, since I bought them since then.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
If anyone is curious, here's my solution to this problem.
- We have a used cooler from a friends Grand national on there now temporarily which we may switch to being an oil cooler (you can never have enough cooling).
- With a bit of dremelling, we cut off the female portion of the spring lock connectors on the A/C condensor. What we are left with are two straight tubes.
One pipe allows a 3/8" hose to just fit over and another slightly larger pipe that fits a 1/2" hose. A few reducing fittings and a Tee (which just happen to allow us to also install the ATF temp gauge) and we're good to go.

- We'll try it and see if the pressure drop is evident. If so, we'll just continue to use the existing oil cooler we have.
 

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Is there anything a dremel cant fix? Congrats man, keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Is there anything a dremel cant fix? Congrats man, keep us posted!
The dremel is probably my favorite power tool. I even used it to cut our springs. If I ever had to cut a hole in the hood, guess what tool I'm going to pull out? :)
-g
 
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