Build Thread 1978 Fairmont…The endless circle.


So while I wait to figure out my rear end issues
Dec 29, 2017
Long Island, NY
I reminded myself today how it was that the overall appearance of the monster was so in need of a serious detail.

It happened because I freakin hate doing sht like this.
Buffing, polishing, waxing,......I hate it.

But it’s done. The Monster is all shined up for his big drive to the beach on thursday, so he can get all covered in bugs on the way there.

And despite the fact that the substrate is failing underneath..I still got a decent shine.
At least the bugs will wash off easy!
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CarMichael Angelo

my rearend will smell so minty fresh,
15 Year Member
Nov 29, 1999
Birmingham, al
As i draw down on my departure date to go to the emerald coast cruizin, i’m watching the weather. It now looks like i’ll be leaving Alabama at 80 degrees, and driving into 85 degrees.
Thoughts turn towards the drive......Do I want to drive 4.5 hours with the windows down, or do I want to be able to do that with them up?

Pretty simple really...Why the hell would I deal with 75 mph wind noise when I don’t have to?

That forced me to consider the AC systems state of charge.....specifically, how much oil is in the compressor?
Since the last time, when the old monster engine was in there, the AC system charge was blown to atmosphere ( I know,....bad Mike,....very bad Mike)
The 2jz put in place, 4 oz of PAG100 oil added to the compressor, and a failed attempt at recharging the system that had low side pressure high, and high side pressure low...

Take the thing to the dealership,...have them evac the system,..and wonder.....How much oil remains in the compressor.
Remove and exchange the drier...seal up the system,...and consider pulling a vacuum on the system prior to a second go at charging the system prior to the trip.

Enter the 3AMD....

” What if the compressor is dry?.....The thing will lock up in about 10 minutes or less if the thing is empty....Then you’ll have way more to deal with than removing compressor and turning it upside down”.

Ahhh fck.

So,......I remove the compressor. And turn it upside down.

Its empty.

Now knowing that it’s empty, I put the thing back. Now I gotta add back oil...What oil, and how much are answers that escape me tonight...I need to talk to Vintage air to know for sure.


And i’m doin all this...with only hours to do it, after work...with a 4.5 hour drive in front of me, on Thursday.

I have 30 oz of R 134...i only need 28. I bought 8 oz of PAG100 oil, but don’t know if that is the right I’m gonna wait till tomorrow night to deal with it.

Ill have to work till 6-7pm....then after talking to Vintage Air...I’ll add whatever they tell me to put in. Vacuum the system, and leave it...till Wednesday.

Then,....if there’s still the same -28” of vacuum on wed night, that i put on it on tuesday night...I’ll attempt to add the refrigerant.
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like kicking myself in the junk
10 Year Member
May 8, 2006
I always enjoy knowing that there is someone else out there that creates their own stress and catastrophes. Being that your on the same team, I'm definitely rooting for cold air for your cruise............or a 10lb bag of ice in the lap if you don't get it to work :nice:
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Easy there, this ain't a dating site.
15 Year Member
Mar 7, 2002
That gauge is politically incorrect and I am offended.
I was going to make a joke involving it saying "Anti Flutter" but I'm too tired to put forth the effort right now and knew that you were talking about it saying "retard".

CarMichael Angelo

my rearend will smell so minty fresh,
15 Year Member
Nov 29, 1999
Birmingham, al
The more I look, the more concerned I am about being able to properly charge the system. I read that r134 is not as forgiving as r12 used to be, and erring on the " undercharged" side used to still end up with a cold AC system. And w/ R134 being more inefficient undercharged systems don't cool, and overcharged systems cause the compressor to run hard, or worse.

The system needs 28 ounces..Refrigerant cans come in 12, 16, 19oz sizes.
( WTF don't they come in 14?)
One way or the other, if I try this myself, im gonna have to guess how much of the second can is required to get it to full.

And given my history over these last couple of years...what usually happens when I "wing it"?

I could button the car up, and bring it to the dealership tomorrow..the AC machine they have will eliminate the guess work..

It makes so much sense to me I don't know why I'm even considering doing this myself other than I want to.


Slap me as well as point and laugh
May 17, 2018
Enterprise AL
Go get a cheap digital food scale from wallyworld. Weigh the cans and charge as needed. Not speaking from experience. Just what I've seen done on line.


Active Member
Jan 4, 2018
Not that critical. Stick a thermometer in a vent, should get somewhere 36-42 degrees when charged correctly, (depending on ambient temp). Drop about the right amount of gas in, should be good. When the high side pressure starts going up while charging and low side doesn't, your close. System doesn't have a receiver, refrigerant backing up in the condenser causes this. Gas it up & hit the road. By the way, If you think that paint is bad, I'll sext you pic of my garbage.

CarMichael Angelo

my rearend will smell so minty fresh,
15 Year Member
Nov 29, 1999
Birmingham, al
Come on, play it safe for once, the equipment is there. Once and done, right?

Sorry, forgot whom I was talking to for a minute. :doh:
Calm down...I have resigned myself to doing things the right way for once. I did go back to Oreillys after @HemiRick pointed out my poor math skills looking for a 16oz can, but evidently, I misspoke.

They dont make no 16oz cans..They have 12, 18, 20, 22oz's though...

I got a refund. I'll take the car to BMW tomorrow, and have #1 charge it using their Rionair machine...for free.

I didnt get away totally scott free w/o fcking something up though...The replacement glass came in for the passenger side mirror....didn't fit.
After paying UPS 2nd day freight to get it here.
I tried to modify it to fit....
It broke.
I suck at this.
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