Archive for air conditioning

Ferrari 330 and 365 A/C Vents

Ferrari 330/365 A/C Vent

Ferrari Air Conditioning

Awhile back I published a post on reproducing the often broken or missing vents and knobs for the Ferrari 330 and 365′s that showed the  prototype to review before the final production. The final order of vents have arrived in a box and I challenged myself to make the delicate and finely detailed knobs that go in the middle of them.

Late production 330 GT 2+2′s had optional Air Conditioning with 3 louvered vents in the middle of the dash with little thimble sized knobs that you twist to both direct the air flow and operate the fan speed and temperature of the A/C system. The middle vent had a blank knob and the outer vents said “aria” I II III (for the three speed fan motor) and the other outer vent had a knob that had the script “freddo” that controls the temperature of the air outlet. I found some very good original knobs and cleaned them up, chipped the white paint out of the script and sanded the delicate fluted lines on them to make a good mold. Then I made tooling to make consistent parts time after time to fit the “D” shaped switch shafts. The results are amazing, I am so impressed at how great everything came out.

I didn’t make the louvered vents, these parts were extremely complicated because the outer cylinder of the vent is on a different angle than the louvered slats, how do you make a mold that not only pulls apart straight but allows the louvers to be on a 45 degree angle! Since I paid the big bucks, I own the multiple piece mold and may tell you the secret someday.

The only part I have not made are the chrome trim rings that go on the outer edge of the vent. Later this month the tooling will be finished up to stamp them out of brass and have them chrome plated to match the rest of these lovely little parts.

In this photo you can see the simple little tool to make the fluted knobs. I can only make one at a time but the same tool makes the “Aria”, the “Freddo” and the blank knob. Since I am using the slow cure plastic, I can only make two knobs per day but will experiment with faster cure resins to churn them out a little more rapidly. (if anyone actually orders them)

A/C vents for Ferrari's

330 or 365 Air Conditioning vents

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Dash Vents for Ferrari 330 and 365′s

Vents for Ferrari 330, 365

Ferrari A/C Vents for sale

In 1966 Ferrari began installing Air Conditioning as a factory option in the 330 GTC and 330 2+2 using many U.S. sourced parts such as York Compressors and Aeroquip hose and fittings. Since the cosmetic appearance matters as much as physical appearance, I have gone through great lengths to find the original specification parts to repair A/C systems in factory equipped cars and to assemble kits to sell to people wishing to install A/C in their car.

I have jigs to make the evaporator housing  under the dash and have patterns to make the compressor brackets. There are thousands of different drier bottles available but the style used on Ferrari’s is the hardest to find and I have a little stash of them to make the system look just right. The Pressure switch was a total pain to locate because it isn’t a automotive A/C part, it is a commercial refrigeration part so after a bunch of research, I have these parts too.

The last part that I am struggling with are the cold air vents that have a opening in the center for the fan speed and temperature switches. I have decided to re-make these vents to sell with the kits and to have them available for sale separately because the originals are brittle and break easily. To make the louvered vent set complete, I am making the chrome plated trim and “Aria” and “Freddo” knobs to fit on the switches.

These photos are the prototypes that need to be reviewed before final production and other than one minor change, they look fantastic. In the next month I will finish the trim parts and knobs and I will have car sets available for sale.

A/C vent for Ferrari 330

330 GT, GTC A/C vent

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Cars and Fire Trucks Coming and Going

GA Bound Porsche 356 Bodyshell

Body shell of Porsche 356

It was a busy day yesterday with the guys hustling around the shop to keep what seems like 1000 going at any given moment. We finally got the Porsche 356B body shell out of the back lot and en route to Georgia. Nate and I were going to put the longer forks on the Skid Steer loader but since we couldn’t find them we just used the shorter forks which worked just fine, reaching the upper level of the truck with ease. I pity the fool who has to take this lump off when it gets to GA!

Fire truck turned car hauler

Car Hauler Fire Truck

One of our customers bought this Seagrave Fire Truck from Washington State and asked us to arranged shipment to our shop to make it into a custom car hauler. When it arrived we loaded it onto our friends ramp truck to get it off the flat bed trailer. Needless to say, both kids and adults were crawling all over this thing. It has a Detroit Diesel 8V-71 engine and Allison Automatic transmission

Maserati Ghibli front suspension

Maserati Front Suspension and steering stuff

Engine block for 4.9 Ghibli

Ghibli 4.9 Liter S.S. engine

Rolf is managing the Maserati Ghibli project which means getting all kinds of parts sent off to the sub-contractors for various things like plating, rebuilding, etc.. We are sending the interior panels to Italy for upholstery while our local guy is going to replace the top and carpets.

Sandblasting Parts

Sandblasting various Parts

Andy is sandblasting all sorts of Maserati Parts, today he was pecking away at the leaf springs and doors. He has spent the week blasting the Ford 8N parts and Maserati parts such as front suspension and rear axle

Ferrari 250 type 168 block upside down

Inverted Ferrari V-12 type 168

Nate is assembling a Ferrari Lusso engine, we finally got the correct piston rings and a new high tech piston ring grinder with dial indicator, super trick. He is also getting all sorts of parts painted on the Ford 8N project and has assembled the transmission and final drive and put them in epoxy primer. He found the correct shade of red in PPG acrylic urethane aka “Concept”.

Seat adjusters for Ghibli Spyder

Maserati Spyder seat Rails

Air cleaner housing for Maserati Ghibli

Maserati Ghibli Air cleaner housing

Eben is contemplating how nearly every part on the Maserati Ghibli project  car is damaged or hacked up. The bolt holes for the seat tracks are broken here and there, a threaded ear on the brake pedal is broken, and the air cleaner housing has been hacked up at the top for some reason. Why would someone go after this area with shears? Maybe once I get the entire car together it will become evident.

Casey and Syl worked the day on the blue 365 GTC/4, installing the front and rear glass and polishing a few odd marks out of the paint. Casey spent the week getting all the A/C hoses routed and other things together on this car that’s been apart for way too long (embarrassingly long time).

I dropped my kids off at school and picked them up later in the day. I also bought and sold the Jaguar XKE Roadster. I also packed up a complete A/C kit for a Ferrari 330 GTC in a huge and heavy box and developed a lead on a Jaguar XKE Series I 2+2 and a XKE Series 1 3.8 liter Coupe. A friend stopped in and we discussed all kinds of cars he has for sale, an Alfa Sprint, Lancia Flaminia S.S. Zagato, what else… He is looking for a Jaguar XK-12o Roadster and a Ferrari 250 GT PF Cabriolet S-II.

Our Bookkeeper Johanne was busy keeping our shop up to date with US Gov payroll status and all the million other bills she keeps on top of.

Peter was making some part, I just can’t remember at the time of this post… He was getting all the paperwork together for a Ferrari that we just sold.

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Air Conditioning for 330 GTC

The orders keep coming in for A/C systems for 330′s so here are some photos of the process. The top photo shows the fabrication of the compressor brackets which use extremely thick steel as a substitute for proper engineering. We joke that well before the brackets are going to flex or distort, the studs that secure them to engine will break off. Anyhow, we copy parts accurately but can see that they are way overbuilt.

We also make the evaporator housing which holds a very dense core and squirrel cage fan. The original housing is made from steel but we make it from aluminum since it’s so much easier to work with and the part has a bunch of bends and needs huge holes drilled in the sides.  Since the part is buried under the dash, no one will ever know the difference especially if we give it a coat of light gold paint.

I have all the other parts coming in soon like the condenser, the compressor, drier bottle and all the fittings to complete the kit. It’s such a huge collection of parts and I have lots of stuff in stock but there is always one things that is missing. When its all together I will take a photo of the complete set up. I have a higher amperage alternator to send off with this kit, it’s an 80 amp unit from a 365 GT 2+2 but the 330′s with A/C originally came with Lucas 60 amp alternators

Ferrari 330 GTC A/C system

A/C System 330 GTC Evaporator

A/C Brackets for Ferrari 330 GTC

Ferrari Air Conditioning system

Interior Evaporator Housing

Housing for A/C Evaporator

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Yet another Ferrari 330 GTC for sale

A California man is the proud new owner of the 330 GTC that was in a post a month ago, http://www.ferraricraft.com/2009/12/a-nice-photo-of-a-330-gtc-that-we-have-for-sale/ and now it is time for me to market another dark blue GTC. Similar to the last car we sold, this one had lots of cosmetic work done by another shop and when we acquired it, nearly every mechanical component needed attention!

There was a large oil leak at the engine when we first got the car, here is what we found jammed between the timing chest and the head! Once we removed the heads, we noticed bad bearing wear, terrible sand cast “el-cheapo” pistons and a plugged up cooling system. Needless to say, now the engine is completely overhauled and after a few years and 2-3000 miles, it is sorted and runs beautifully.

Here is another post I did on the transmission to this car. http://www.ferraricraft.com/2007/08/ferrari-330-gtc-transmission/

With a new radiator core, all new A/C components, axle boots, tires, clutch hydraulic components, this is an outstanding car!

Dark Blue GTC

Dark Blue GTC

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Another A/C system ready to be delivered


I have never advertised anywhere that I make Air Conditioning systems for Ferraris but somehow people continue to contact me to build a system for them.

A man in CA. heard that I have the jigs and know how to get all of the parts to equip his car with a very original style system with the original type hose ends and cotton braided hose. We also built brackets for the original style York compressor. Through various contacts, I located all of these parts, sent many things off for cadmium plating and sent off a diagram on how to wire everything and route the hoses and wires.

One thing that is missing to complete a system are the dashboard vents that double as temperature switch and fan speed switch. I am in the process of tooling up to re-make these vents and knobs that will work with modern replacement switches.

If you know anyone who needs these vents let me know. It will cost a small fortune to make the molds for these and I will also have to make the chrome trim pieces so I would like to have some interest to help out with the cost.

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Ferrari Custom A/C Evaporator

While working to locate A/C parts for our Ferrari 330 GTS project, a man asked me to locate a evaporator for his car, a 1967 Ferrari 330 GTC that uses the same unit as the GTS. I searched all over for a unit for the GTC but I probably purchased the last OEM evaporator in existence for the GTS. Without the OEM unit I told him that we will to fabricate one once I locate a correct sized evaporator core. We made a jig off from the original unit in order to be sure the dimensions are the same should anyone want us to make them an evaporator for there car.

With great difficulty I located an appropriately sized core and blower (unusually thick and narrow) and we got busy fabricating a duplicate of the original. In the photos you will see that the original gold cad plated steel and the one that we made is from aluminum sheet. We will probably paint it satin black so it Disappears behind the center console of this car.

As I said above, if you are looking for a 330 GTC or GTS evaporator unit or any other Ferrari A/C advise please let me know.

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330 Air Conditioning Systems

This blog makes it so much easier to post current projects on our site. I can manage it, post pictures and describe what is going on without having to submit everything to my wife Gillian to be uploaded on the main website. It also is a way for you to ask questions or get a discussion going.

Here are some of the projects that we are working on.

I just finished installing an air conditioning system in a Ferrari 330 GT 2+2 that had one very difficult criteria to meet — “don’t visually alter the dash or interior in any way”. 330′s that came from the factory with A/C had the row of rocker switches moved to the left of the steering column so we had to work the evaporator around a cluster of wires and bulky switches. We altered the glove box in order to provide room for ducting, but not much else was altered.

I used a full modern r-134a system with barrier hose and a rotary compressor, so under the hood does not look too “period correct”. Have a look at the fabrication work to make the radiator cooling fans work and the altered glove box!
At the same time, I am installing a totally period correct A/C system in a 330 GTS that did not have it new. I lucked out when I bought probably the last evaporator unit for that model. As it goes, I am making some templates to have on file in case I have to make a copy of the original some time down the road.

This 330 GTS system is using the original cotton wrapped hose and correct hose ends as well as a restored York compressor. The most difficult task at hand is dealing with the fan speed and temperature control switches that double as the vent outlets. I cannot seem to find these switches/vents anywhere so I may modify the existing vents to accept modern switches but they will not have the script engraved/stamped into them. I guess this car is not going to Pebble Beach.

Incidentally, this same car was wrecked in the left rear. We repaired the damage and painted the car Pino Verde (pine green metallic).

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