Does anyone know How to fix a stripped AC / Condenser Fitting? - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 05:06 AM Thread Starter
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Does anyone know How to fix a stripped AC / Condenser Fitting?

Last night while doing the Blower Motor Resistor I noticed that the fitting on the AC condenser stripped as I removed the fitting. It was coming apart hard and I think it was cross threaded from the factory. Any ideas on how to fix this?

Can I remove the condenser and have a new fitting put on the end? Is this something that a good shop could do for me? (It looks like the condenser is about $700 from lotus garage)

How could I fix the other pipe? (#4) That one is $51.40 which is not too crazy, so if need be, I can order a new one.

I miss driving my car!!!! Grrr!!!!

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Regards,
John
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 07:03 AM
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condenser fitting repair

There are a couple things to try. There are tools specifically designed for cleaning the threads of both male and female threads. We use them in our work. Usually we have the components out of the car, on the bench, because it is easier to "feel" what you are doing. Of course you need to know the fitting thread size first. The picture of the nut looks as if it is SAE (as opposed to metric) because it does not seem to have the characteristic notches around the circumference usually found on metric fittings. If you cannot salvage enough threads on the condenser fitting you may be able to braze or tig weld a replacement. We typically use a torch to braze. If you can determine the fitting thread size I can likely find the individual tool for you (we buy in sets of 5 different sizes for SAE and 8 for metric).
BTW the cause of the problem is metal transfer from the aluminum condenser to the steel nut, not cross threading.

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Last edited by azac; 10-15-2010 at 07:07 AM. Reason: added comment
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 09:00 AM
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remove the condensor and take both parts to a radiator shop. they can easily replace those fittings.

or, you can get an a/c line repair kit. http://www.dormanproducts.com/docume...00-600INST.pdf

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 09:09 AM
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hopefully the gif image of the type of tool will appear in this post or a link ? The male part of the tool is easy to see, the female is at the other end.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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Wow... I am always amazed at all the talent that is on this site. Thanks a million guys! i really appreciate the help!

I think I will remove the condenser and take it to be repaired at a radiator shop. It seems like there are not enough threads left...

I wonder why they would use dissimilar metals that would react with each other like that?

Thanks!
John
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 01:41 PM
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nice lift!

i remember taking clam off old elise, not fun in a dim garage and jack stands..

lift+proper lighting.. can i move in!? i hate tooling with my exige in my garage.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 02:46 PM
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Looks like your lifting the car on the wrong points.

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-15-2010, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sh4rkattk View Post
Looks like your lifting the car on the wrong points.
One of my lifts is the same as in the photo and that's how I lift my car. The front arms go on the underside of the extrusion on the blue stickers. On the rear arms you use a short extension (comes with the lift) and pick up the chassis right in front of the rear wheel. There's a reasonable amount of room to fit in the pad.

Edit: Yeah, it looks like the pad is being used but no extension. Perhaps some of the lifting extensions which I have seen sold here (which bolt to the tooling point on the chassis) are being used.

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-18-2010, 04:56 AM Thread Starter
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i am using the front lift point stickers with a hockey puck to space it out a touch...

In the rear i am using the rear point that i have seen a kit of aluminum spacers sold here on the forum.... i just cut a 4x4 and used it as a spacer like I have seen them do at the lotus dealer... Is that safe? I don't want to damage the car or more importantly squish my brothers dog!

Any help would greatly be appreciated!

-John
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-18-2010, 05:51 AM Thread Starter
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here was my old method...
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 12:37 AM
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sweet thats how mine looks right now, brake job including rotors.

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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 12:23 PM
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I was wondering how like it would take us to invent transparent aluminum.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerawong View Post
I was wondering how like it would take us to invent transparent aluminum.
you watch too much star trek.

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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 10-20-2010, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by kameltoe View Post
i am using the front lift point stickers with a hockey puck to space it out a touch...

In the rear i am using the rear point that i have seen a kit of aluminum spacers sold here on the forum.... i just cut a 4x4 and used it as a spacer like I have seen them do at the lotus dealer... Is that safe? I don't want to damage the car or more importantly squish my brothers dog!

Any help would greatly be appreciated!

-John
Yea your fine, looked like you placed the arm directly infront of the rear wheel on the undertray.

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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-01-2013, 05:48 PM
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Currious what was done to repair this. I just had the exact same issue. Im thinking of converting it to a different style fitting?

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post #16 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-21-2016, 02:20 AM
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Bumping an old thread. This just happened to me too while doing the resistor pack fix. Threads are stripped. Looking for what was done to fix this...

Thanks in advance!
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post #17 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-21-2016, 11:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Falsey View Post
Bumping an old thread. This just happened to me too while doing the resistor pack fix. Threads are stripped. Looking for what was done to fix this...



Thanks in advance!

Threads more than likely aren't stripped. As mentioned above, metal transfer from dissimilar metals. Happened to my car.

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post #18 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 12:05 PM
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Bumpity Bump Bump

So, what's the verdict? Was an AC company able to fix it? Did a re-threading tool work? Did you re-weld a new fitting on? Did you suck it up and buy the $900 condenser radiator? Did you give up and decided AC wasn't worth it? Did you punch a Lotus engineer in the face for designing such an evil steel-aluminum coupling?
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post #19 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 12:38 PM
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One possible solution would be to replace the stock AC condenser with a Vintage Air aftermarket unit. @exigegus did this for his update of the heating/cooling ventilation system on his car found here:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f313...38/index2.html

It may not be a perfect factory direct fit alternative but it looks like it solves several problems along the way and is far less expensive than the factory unit. I think he may have also replace some of the hard lines with flexible hoses as well.

Here's a another summary thread on AC rework for the Eliges:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f259...usions-375169/
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post #20 of 24 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 01:09 PM
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I ended up buying a replacement from elise-shop.com

The female end with the hard line I was able to chase and clean the threads. While tightening be very careful not to let the new condenser pipe with the fitting twist.

I didn't trust any shops nearby where I was staying to fix it. Especially when it's a clam off job to fix it if it began to leak lol
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