GERALD´S CADILLACS


WWW.ELDORADO-SEVILLE.COM

A6 AC COMPRESSOR REPAIR - BAD BEARING ON THE 1974

When I bought my 74 the seller informed me that the AC compressor was bad and that it was disconnected due to a bad clutch or another problem. So I ordered a new rebuilt AC compressor with the car.
Due to all the other projects I never managed to get the AC back in fully working order until now.
Unfortunately the rebuilt AC compressor came with the clutch coil terminals in the wrong position. They are available with the terminals at the correct 10 o clock position or the 2 o clock position, which is correct for other years.
If the terminals are in the wrong position you cant connect the original wires to them as they are too short. With the high shipping costs it was no option to send the incorrect compressor back.

As it turned out the cars original compressor had a bad bearing and that was the reason why it was disconnected.

My friends Lucky and Steve were here to help me with the compressor project and so I took both of my compressors to Lucky´s workshop, as he has all the necessary tools and experience with these compressors from his own cars.
Originally I just wanted to turn the clutch coil on the rebuilt compressor into the correct position, but then we decided to rebuild the original compressor instead, because it still has the original decal, which is not available as a correct reproduction. All the available compressor reproduction decals are TOTALLY incorrect for the 1974 Cadillacs. The 1974 reproduction decals all show the wrong amount of refrigerant! They are also different in many other details. The closest match of reproductions for 1974 are the ones from 1972 Cadillacs…

We still disassembled the rebuilt compressor to "borrow" its pulley bearing to replace the bad one on the original compressor.
The procedure to be able to replace the bearing and to turn the clutch coil is not too difficult - but you need some special tools. Without those you cant do it. You´ll need a basic clutch puller / installer set for this job and some long nose snap ring pliers to get the retaining rings out.
First remove the shaft nut and the snap ring ( the rebuilt compressors always seem to come without this snap ring) and then pull the clutch with the special puller. Pull off the pulley and take the bearing out and replace it with a new one.
To be able to turn the clutch coil you´ll have to remove another snap ring. This snap ring was the biggest challenge for us. The shop manual lists a special tool for this which we of course did not have… It could be done with a very long nose plier as well, but we did not have these either. So it took us quite a long time to get it out with screwdrivers and self made hooks… You can then simply turn the coil into the correct position.
Putting it back together is pretty straightforward as well, but again you need a special installer tool to get the clutch back on and to adjust it properly.

I will now have to buy a new bearing so that I can put the rebuilt compressor back together and have it as a spare.
I have attached some pics from the shop manual which show how to remove the various parts of the compressor to remove the pulley and the clutch coil.

As always you can find ALL the pictures in my restoration gallery!


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You need some special tools to disassemble the A6 AC compressor.
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On the 74´s original AC compressor clutch the bearing was bad.
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The compressor clutch removed. You can see the bad bearing inside which is normally sealed. Some balls were already missing.
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The clutch with some remains of the bearings.
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The clutch and pulley removed on the original compressor.
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My friends Steve and Lucky at work. We also replaced all the O - rings.
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Removing the pulley
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Removing the pulley from the rebuilt compressor.
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There is this one snap ring we just did not have the right tool for. The shop manual lists a special plier for this. After a lot of fiddling we got it out eventually…
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The magnetic coils on the rebuilt and the original compressor
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Lucky in action
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Once the snap ring is out you can turn the coils terminals to the 11o´clock position or the 1 o clock position. On the 74 it has to be at the 10 o clock position, otherwise the connecting wires are too short.
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Getting this snap ring out was the hardest part on this job, due to not having the right tool for it.
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The terminal at the incorrect position at the rebuilt compressor.
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We turned the terminal to the correct position.
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We sandblasted the pulley while it was out of the car so that I can repaint it now. Note the original decal! All the available reproduction decals are totally incorrect for the 1974 Cadillacs. The reproduction decals all show the wrong amount of refrigerant! They are also different in many other details. The closest match of reproduction decals for 1974 are the ones from 1972 Cadillacs…

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THE 1967 WATERPUMP PROJECT IS COMING TO AN END - DETAILING THE AC COMPRESSOR AND A LEAKING VALVE COVER

The engine in my 67 Deville is back together after the water pump replacement and engine bay detailing.
The project had a major delay as the reproduction radiator hoses were held by customs for 5 weeks. Its unbelievable…

I could now finally refill the cooling system and start the car again with the new water pump in place.
The car fired right up although I had also removed the distributor and forgot to mark how it was in. So I had to find TDC (top dead center) before I could install the distributor back into the car.
I also bought a cheap timing light and set the timing to 5 degrees.
You have to set idling to 480 rpm, disconnect the vacuum hose to the distributor and the parking brake and plug the hoses to set timing correctly

After the first few miles I am quite satisfied with my work. I hope that everything will stay like this and that no leaks will show up.
Only the right valve cover where I had replaced the gasket seemed to have a slight leak with oil dropping on the exhaust manifold... Looks like I will have to take the compressor out again to be able to take the valve cover off again and install another new gasket… But first I will have to find out why it is actually leaking. I hope that the cover itself is not warped as it was already leaking before on exactly the same spot. Often these covers get tightened down too much. All it needs is 28 INCH pounds of torque (3,1 NM) I will also make sure the screw holes have not become dished (usually due to over-tightening of the screws).  Use a small block of wood as an anvil and a small hammer to flatten the screw holes back out.

The engine somehow runs and idles better than before and has more power. It seems like the ignition was off before. I had the car tuned by a professional years ago - another thing they did not get right...

The new reproduction hoses I got from Fusik are also in place with the correct tower hose clamps. The hoses have the correct numbers stamped on, but compared to my original hoses the stamping looks different where the numbers are much smaller. The hoses fit very well, only the lower radiator hose had to be cut a little to fit.

I also detailed the replacement AC compressor I installed years ago. I bought a new reproduction decal which is a very good match to the original decal. In general I found out that all the reproduction decals available out there are not a 100% match. They look very similar but they all differ in size, spacing of the numbers, and most of the time the font used is very similar, but not exactly the same. I have no idea why the manufactures did not get it 100% right. Maybe I will have to produce my own decals in the future… Most of the AC compressor labels you can buy are incorrect for the year or model they are offered. If you want to get the correct one for the 67 Deville you will have to buy the one for the 67 Eldorado. Often these reproduction decals have the wrong colors, numbers and R12 capacity on them. So do your research to get the correct one.

Another challenge was to reproduce the O.K. inspection stamp. Years ago I found the stamp on ebay and experimented with different kinds of paint and never got any useable results.
Eventually I found a stamp kit set for Corvettes which included the correct yellow paint and a stamp felt and the Corvette stamp. I could not use the Corvette stamp of course, but the rest of the kit is perfect and finally I could apply the stamp to my AC compressor which now looks factory new again.

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The engine is back together
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The detailed AC compressor
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The O.K: final test stamp

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Bleeding brakes and spring cleaning

Finally we had some warm weather and it was time to start working on my cars again.
First up was the 1958 Cadillac Eldorado Seville which needed new brake fluid.

So I sucked out the old fluid from the reservoir and flushed all the lines with fresh DOT 3 brake fluid.
I started at the right rear line, the left rear, the right front and left front brake cylinder.
Although I have a pit its still a pain to reach all the bleeding screws. The power brake cylinder itself also needs some good bleeding.
Thanks to my dear wife Afra for gently pumping the brake pedal and helping me out.
When you bleed brakes make sure your assistant does not push the brake pedal all the way through as this could damage your master cylinders membrane.

Next up was a thorough cleaning of the garage floor.
My 3 year old son Elliot also wanted to help his daddy and helped me swiping the floor ;-)

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Bleeding and flushing the 58s brake lines

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The cars are out for cleaning the garage floor

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Floor cleaning

Little Elliot helping out - I´m glad he loves being in the garage.edge
Little Elliot helping out - I´m glad he loves being in the garage.

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Men at work




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The 67 Eldorado is at the shop again

Finally my climate compressor showed up from the USA. The USPS kind of lost it and it took three months to arrive at my door... In the meantime I had ordered another one because it was thought to be lost and so I ended up with 2 climate compressors for the Eldorado. The old one was leaking its charge and so I decided to go with a new rebuilt one.
Also the ignition and the rebuilt carburetor were not quite up to my standards yet, and so I decided to ask for some professional help for the last finishing touches. So I delivered the car to the shop, and the experts did some more tweaking. The result is that I finally have a perfectly working AC on my car. It took a while, but finally it's working as it should. When I got the car, a lot of AC parts were defective or torn out, and now everything is back to factory specs.
Also the carburetor is finally working as it should.
From a technical standpoint the car is now in perfect condition - you wont find anything that´s not working as it should.
Great! - next up is a repaint...

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The Eldo at the shop.
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I took my little son with me to show him whats going on in the restoration shop.
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Looking at so many cool cars made little Elliot very thirsty. Here he is having his milk in the shop.

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A problem with the 67 Eldorados carburetor

I brought my 67 Eldorado home from the restoration shop yesterday only to find out that the AC compressor died and leaked the fresh refill it got. Everything is new except the compressor and of course it died at the first usage. The system was pressure tested at the shop and worked like a charm. When they let the car idle with the AC on, the compressor started to leak. They tried to fix it but had no success. So I will need a new compressor and a new charge.
The right headlight door actuator also suddenly no longer works correctly. All hoses are new and it worked perfectly until recently. I can now only make it close if I jiggle on the actuator. Is there any way to rebuild them? A source for new or rebuilt ones? I have heard that the ones from the 1969 Camaro is very similar and only needs some minor modifications to work on the Eldorado as well. So I went ahead and ordered one. But the worst thing was that the freshly rebuilt carburetor made strange ticking noises and sounded like a tractor while accelerating. It worked well though, but the sound was unbearable. Could it be a defective gasket? It was also idling quite badly. Acceleration was superb though, its much more powerful than before, but still something was wrong... The ignition also was completely rebuilt. So I played around with the ignition first, but the ticking sound did not go away, no matter in which direction I changed the timing... Almost sounded like an exhaust leak, but there seemed to be none... I´ve uploaded a soundfile of the carburetor while idling. http://www.speedometerfilm.com/carb.wav It was recorded with my phone, so the sound-quality is not the best, but it should give you an idea. The phone was about 20cm away from the carburetor while recording. It was LOUD! Before I had the carb and ignition rebuilt, it was extremely quiet and idling smoothly but had misses while accelerating.
I got some very valuable tips from fellow Cadillac aficionados and the previous owner of this Eldorado even called me from the USA to give me some tips to solve this issue, and he was spot on with his diagnosis...

With a hose held to my ear and the other end to the carburetor, I was able to locate the source of the noise. It came from the carburetor below the choke assembly. So I took the freshly rebuilt Rochester Quadrajet out again, only to find out that the gasket and the metal shim were installed the wrong way around. This burned a hole into the brand new gasket where the exhaust gases from the heat crossover passage could escape and make this noise.
Of course I did not have a new gasket at hand, so I carefully removed the old one from my spare engine, which was in pretty good shape and installed it.
No more ticking - no more noises, no more bad idling.
The car now drives amazingly good and is silky smooth. It could not be any better.


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The shim was installed first and then the carb - thats wrong! The gasket has to go on the intake manifold first - then comes the metal shim.

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Here you can see the burnt gasket and the metal shim

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Putting everything back together again

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Test drive after the repair - perfect!

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