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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was posting on here last week and researching all the things that could go wrong on this job. I can't say I was looking forward to it, but with the only alternitives likely to cost loads of cash with no guarantee of a good job, I decided to have a go.

I printed off the instructions here: http://members.tccoa.com/timb/Heatercore.htm omitting a few of the steps as advised by posts from sirwilliam relating to the steering column removal, and all in all it went pretty well. Here are some pictures, I hope they show up ok:

<table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/LuPWDhFeG3SqMJkLN0MRsQdS4jWwvubhKKAbNzXFbR8?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_cui5EYNrUCE/TaLxOcQcqXI/AAAAAAAAIGc/U3CbFkSnpGo/s640/IMG_0445.JPG" height="480" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/andy.willis/ThunderbirdHeater?authkey=Gv1sRgCLbVkKKhvLXuFg&feat=embedwebsite">Thunderbird Heater</a></td></tr></table>

<table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/BDyF1tPqU7R6beBaC_eKXwdS4jWwvubhKKAbNzXFbR8?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/_cui5EYNrUCE/TaL3g9JoPNI/AAAAAAAAIGg/7PQGbRXMgR4/s640/IMG_0444.JPG" height="640" width="480" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/andy.willis/ThunderbirdHeater?authkey=Gv1sRgCLbVkKKhvLXuFg&feat=embedwebsite">Thunderbird Heater</a></td></tr></table>

<table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/tF1KvKUonphkOAySCQJRgAdS4jWwvubhKKAbNzXFbR8?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_cui5EYNrUCE/TaLxIwcFD5I/AAAAAAAAIGY/H8cZ1TXgE1w/s640/IMG_0442.JPG" height="480" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/andy.willis/ThunderbirdHeater?authkey=Gv1sRgCLbVkKKhvLXuFg&feat=embedwebsite">Thunderbird Heater</a></td></tr></table>

<table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/S9NukfxfZqvlFnNbPgSYMwdS4jWwvubhKKAbNzXFbR8?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_cui5EYNrUCE/TaLw96vvcFI/AAAAAAAAIGM/oqSzrKpC7sQ/s640/IMG_0440.JPG" height="480" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/andy.willis/ThunderbirdHeater?authkey=Gv1sRgCLbVkKKhvLXuFg&feat=embedwebsite">Thunderbird Heater</a></td></tr></table>
 

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Discussion Starter #2

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Discussion Starter #4
I didn't take my shifter out, but I think the defroster and shifter looms are completely seperate. Are you sure it started after you had the dash out? Sounds more like 2 seperate problems to me. Maybe the bulbs gone in the shifter and the relay/fuse in the defroster.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I didn't find it a problem. The column gave me something to get hold of when I pulled the dash out ( I did it on my own). I read on here that it adds about an hour to to the job to remove it, so decided not to. Also, I didn't fancy disturbing all that wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Wow England, eh? I thought the radio looked different....is the car originally from there?
My car was imported to the UK by a US serviceman who then sold it presumably before he went home. I bought it at 46k and its now up to about 115k. They never sold T-birds over here, so its a rarity and no-one knows what it is or how old it is (as I bought a private plate) which suits me fine as I live in silver BMW/Mercedes/Audio land.

That's not the original radio. I've got the original but one of the buttons was faulty, so I fitted that one which originally came out of a Ford Sierra and is slightly older than the car. I was actually thinking of upgrading it as I only use the tape player with an adapter to play my mp3's.
 

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Discussion Starter #10

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so you did not unbolt or unplug anything related to the steering???? i want to do this on my car too.. i bypass the heater core like a year and a half ago but i want to fix it and it doesn't look that hard if the steering column is not removed
 

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Good job! My first time took me all afternoon. Second time(due to a faulty core ) took me two hours. I just took the bolts under the column out and let it drop. Had to remove the center console and loosen the dash and pull it back far enough to get the core out.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
so you did not unbolt or unplug anything related to the steering???? i want to do this on my car too.. i bypass the heater core like a year and a half ago but i want to fix it and it doesn't look that hard if the steering column is not removed
Its not as bad as I was expecting. Just basically follow timb's instructions from the link above. All I did as far as the steering is concerned was to undo the clamp bolt where the steering column attaches to the shaft that goes through the floor. One bolt, then you can push the section coming out of the floor down (its a collapsable shaft) to get it off of the steering column shaft. I didn't remove any of the steering column shrouds (upper or lower) or any of the wiring. I left the column attached to the dash and pulled the whole lot away from the firewall when everything else had been disconnected.

If you were planning to remove the dash completely I would definitely unbolt the column from the dash. But in my opinion, just to get access to the heater I'd leave it all attached.

When you undo the central screw and disconnect the big electrical connector on the lh (drivers) side of the firewall, before you release the clips and push the part thats normally in the firewall through into the car, wrap some wire round a spare bolt and screw it into the screw hole in the middle of the connector. Then when you come to put the dash back in, you can guide the big connector back upto its hole by pulling the wire. It's easier than trying to guide it back up from inside the car.

The hardest part was cutting the stubs off of the old heater core in the engine bay, so that I could pull the old core back out of the dash. Once you have the old core out, clean out the heater box, and cut the foam gasket in the firewall right up the the edge of the hole in the firewall (rh edge in my picture). At first I just cut it between the two tube holes, but when I went to put the new core in, it wouldn't go through the gasket. After I cut it up the rh edge of the hole, it went straight through. The new core is held tight up to the firewall when its bolted in, so it wont cause a problem having the slit in the foam gasket.

I'd also recommend getting some hoseclip pliers for when you put the heater hoses back onto the hew heater core stubs. It makes it MUCH easier.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Good job! My first time took me all afternoon. Second time(due to a faulty core ) took me two hours. I just took the bolts under the column out and let it drop. Had to remove the center console and loosen the dash and pull it back far enough to get the core out.
After I put my dash back, I thought the car looked quite cool without the centre console. It reminded me of the 60's cars before consoles were the norm.
 

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Yeah I agree, it reminded me of my 74 Chevy Vega. All that was missing was the hand brake.
Hey, my uncle had one of those old Vega's (station wagon with the round window in it) with a 350 in it. That baby would fly!
 

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Its not as bad as I was expecting. Just basically follow timb's instructions from the link above. All I did as far as the steering is concerned was to undo the clamp bolt where the steering column attaches to the shaft that goes through the floor. One bolt, then you can push the section coming out of the floor down (its a collapsable shaft) to get it off of the steering column shaft. I didn't remove any of the steering column shrouds (upper or lower) or any of the wiring. I left the column attached to the dash and pulled the whole lot away from the firewall when everything else had been disconnected.

If you were planning to remove the dash completely I would definitely unbolt the column from the dash. But in my opinion, just to get access to the heater I'd leave it all attached.

When you undo the central screw and disconnect the big electrical connector on the lh (drivers) side of the firewall, before you release the clips and push the part thats normally in the firewall through into the car, wrap some wire round a spare bolt and screw it into the screw hole in the middle of the connector. Then when you come to put the dash back in, you can guide the big connector back upto its hole by pulling the wire. It's easier than trying to guide it back up from inside the car.

The hardest part was cutting the stubs off of the old heater core in the engine bay, so that I could pull the old core back out of the dash. Once you have the old core out, clean out the heater box, and cut the foam gasket in the firewall right up the the edge of the hole in the firewall (rh edge in my picture). At first I just cut it between the two tube holes, but when I went to put the new core in, it wouldn't go through the gasket. After I cut it up the rh edge of the hole, it went straight through. The new core is held tight up to the firewall when its bolted in, so it wont cause a problem having the slit in the foam gasket.

I'd also recommend getting some hoseclip pliers for when you put the heater hoses back onto the hew heater core stubs. It makes it MUCH easier.
thanks man i will try this on the weekend
 

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Discussion Starter #18

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cold air from heater after core replacement

well i just did the heater core repair/install according to the instructions and everything went back together but when i turned the switch on to check the heat output i only get cold air. any suggestions? does the system need to be bled somehow? the hoses going in and out of of the heater core are HOT yet the heat output is minimal compared to before the core replacement.

this info came with the core ; has anyone had to do this?

Bleeding the system (if necessary) is required on many models where
the radiator is mounted lower than the engine cooling passages.
When filling the system, air may stay trapped in the engine or
heater core and cause eventual damage or hard to solve symptoms.
Many models are equipped with bleeder screws located near the
thermostat housing. Refer to the procedures found in the owners
manual or repair manuals. Some vehicles need to have the front
end lifted high enough to make the air bubbles circulate back to the
radiator
 
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