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Old 09-09-2017, 04:58 PM   #1
Rust-O-Matic
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Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

I recently tore down, stripped, fixed, and repainted all of the original heater core housing parts on my 66 C20. I picked up a new core from Classic Parts because my old one was seeping. I opted for the more expensive copper one over the cheaper aluminum version, because the core dimensions of the aluminum one were not the same as my original. The copper one was basically identical to mine though.

Tried to put it all back together today, and the heater hose necks sticking out of the core are not in the right places, and therefore will not fit. It was not off real far, so I tried to bend them slightly, and you guys know what happened... the solder joint popped and the tube fell off in my hands.

I'm gonna take it back to Classic next week and see if they will take pity on me and swap/refund/something. I'm trying to get this done in time to go to a local car show next weekend. So my question is, if Classic can't help me find one that fits correctly (I'll bring the housing with me when I go), can any of you guys recommend a brand or seller that you know for certain fits? Once again, just to be clear, my setup is the Deluxe heater that uses a little larger core than the thrift setup.
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Old 09-09-2017, 05:39 PM   #2
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

http://www.partsgeek.com/catalog/196...ater_core.html
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Old 09-09-2017, 07:06 PM   #3
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Thanks, but that doesn't really answer my question. I'm looking for personal experience on exactly which cores fit correctly, if possible, rather than a generic list of cores for sale.

Here are some pics of the problem I have:
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Old 09-09-2017, 07:18 PM   #4
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

I ran into the same problem with my copper core. If you can't find a fit, you might have to do what I did and make a bracket. Sorry, not what you want to hear. Good luck with your search and please post a vendor and part# if you do find one.
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Old 09-09-2017, 07:22 PM   #5
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

I have seen this before, usually with the copper replacements...I just enlarged the slot radius so that the core would fit correctly...

I used a dremel and removed about 1/8" from the slot on the top in your pic...that allowed the core to rotate more into the correct position...

You can sweat (solder) the pipe back in place?

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Old 09-09-2017, 07:38 PM   #6
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Thanks guys, sounds like I'm not the only one. I'll definitely post whatever I end up with. I'd rather not tear the new paint all up modifying the housing, and the little bracket and side plate would no longer fit either. The paint isn't gonna win any concourse awards, but I've got quite a bit of time invested in it.

Yes, I should be able to sweat the tube back in, and thought about doing so. If I tilt the tube it will clear the slot, however it still doesn't line up with the side plate or clamp bracket. I figured even if I fixed it, it still might not fit to my satisfaction, and the parts place might tell me to take a hike because I went to town on it with a torch haha.

On the one hand, I probably sound pretty picky. On the other, i feel like new parts should fit the application for which they were designed.

Last edited by Rust-O-Matic; 09-09-2017 at 08:40 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old 09-09-2017, 08:15 PM   #7
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Same issue. My radiator guru took old sides off and in put them on new core. If you kept your orininals.
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Old 09-09-2017, 08:40 PM   #8
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Yeah if I can't find a new one that fits correctly, I'm gonna look into having the original rebuilt or repaired. Finding a reputable radiator shop to do that around here may be as hard as finding a good fitting new one.
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Old 09-10-2017, 11:11 AM   #9
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

I had the same issue on mine and I ended up using the old end cap with the tubes from mine and a shop soldered it to the new repop core.
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Old 09-10-2017, 11:33 AM   #10
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

That looks really good!

It sure is frustrating the companies that make these cores can produce thousands of them that are aaaaalmost right, but just off enough to screw everyone that buys one.
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Old 09-10-2017, 12:03 PM   #11
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Quote:
Originally Posted by LT1 Burb View Post
I had the same issue on mine and I ended up using the old end cap with the tubes from mine and a shop soldered it to the new repop core.
How well does the GM stamp / label hold up on those hoses? They look great by the way.
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Old 09-11-2017, 02:32 PM   #12
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Alright fellas, I just hit Classic Parts in Riverside on my lunch break. I brought the top of the enclosure from my truck with me to check fit. The salesman brought out another copper core to check the fit, and it had the same problem as the first one, and wouldn't fit into the slots on the enclosure top. He went back and talked to their parts manager, who told them they have had several complaints about "OER", the brand that makes those.

He then brought out the cheaper aluminum version, which fit like a glove. The part number is Spectra 94691. It's lighter, feels cheaper, and is certainly not my first choice, but it fits like a champ, so that's what I'm gonna go with for now. They've been using aluminum to make radiators for decades now, so they can't be that bad. At this point, anything that doesn't leak is better than what I had.

I googled the Spectra's part number while he was gathering some other items for me, and found the same part way cheaper online. When I mentioned it, he agreed to price match, and I was out the door for a little less than half of what I originally paid them for the copper core.

I'll let you guys know if I have any trouble actually installing the new unit, but as far as I can tell it should slip right in. Also came with it's own new bracket to support the tubes.

Last edited by Rust-O-Matic; 09-11-2017 at 03:27 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 09-11-2017, 02:34 PM   #13
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

PS, I also dig the "GM" hoses on LT1 Burb's pic. Where did you acquire those?
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Old 09-11-2017, 04:05 PM   #14
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Quote:
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How well does the GM stamp / label hold up on those hoses? They look great by the way.
They hold up great, no problems at all.
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Old 09-11-2017, 04:06 PM   #15
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rust-O-Matic View Post
PS, I also dig the "GM" hoses on LT1 Burb's pic. Where did you acquire those?
I believe from Ecklers Corvette supply.
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Old 09-11-2017, 08:40 PM   #16
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

L MC has different sizes
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Old 09-11-2017, 08:54 PM   #17
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

I did what LVPhotos said. I have a 62 Pontiac with factory A/C and no one makes a repo A/C heater core for my Catalina. The A/C & non A/C cars had the exact heater core dimensions, the heater hose outlets were different. bought the repo copper core and had the ends swapped off my old leaking core onto the new core by a local radiator shop. If I remember correctly he only charged me around $25.00.
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Old 09-11-2017, 09:00 PM   #18
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

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Originally Posted by The Rocknrod View Post
How well does the GM stamp / label hold up on those hoses? They look great by the way.
Colored clamps too.
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Old 09-11-2017, 11:32 PM   #19
LT1 Burb
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Here ya go.
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Old 09-12-2017, 12:02 AM   #20
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Re: Help finding heater core that fits '66 deluxe heater (w/ AC)

Nice
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