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64V-K7
07-07-2017, 05:07 AM
Was this a misprint or did they mean a Climatizer?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1940-Studebaker-Champion-Custom-Coupe-RECEIPT-vintage-antique-original-/311906956634?hash=item489f1a755a:g:cOwAAOSwIaFZGzGA

jclary
07-07-2017, 08:13 AM
Many years ago, I was befriended by a well connected antique car broker (RIP). Occasionally, I would stop by his shop to see what valuable and rare Pebble Beach quality vehicles were passing through. Sometimes, when time permitted, he would give me a ride in one. You never knew what to expect. There were Packards, Pierce-Arrows, supercharged Graham, RR, and even an occasional Bugatti. I recall two particular cars that I may be conflating, the "Air-Conditioner" feature, in my memory?:confused: One was a DeSoto Business Coupe, and the other was a Pontiac Sports Coupe.:drool: Both cars were either late '30's or early '40's. On one of them, the air vent controls were identified as "Air Conditioner." Of course, there was no heat exchanger involved like our modern air-conditioning systems. However, it could have incorporated an actual electrical fan to supply air, through the duct-work, in addition to the flow-through vent opening as common with most vehicles of the day. I'm thinking it was the Pontiac.:)
http://imganuncios.mitula.net/1940_desoto_business_coupe_1310106454708131889.jpghttps://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0_Ecds7CIuI/V9vZpPexG4I/AAAAAAAAhkE/yS5y1RabbtIWMbtIkLu8Bhweb7eqTZkfwCLcB/s640/American%2BLadies%2BPosing%2Bwith%2BTheir%2B40%2527s%2BCars%2Bduring%2Bthe%2B194 0s%2B%252814%2529.jpg

jnormanh
07-07-2017, 08:33 AM
The first factory air conditioning (a device which actually chilled air via a compressor) was Packard 1939. Cadillac, Buick and Oldsmobile followed in 1953.

8E45E
07-07-2017, 08:35 AM
Both cars were either late '30's or early '40's. On one of them, the air vent controls were identified as "Air Conditioner." Of course, there was no heat exchanger involved like our modern air-conditioning systems. However, it could have incorporated an actual electrical fan to supply air, through the duct-work, in addition to the flow-through vent opening as common with most vehicles of the day.

As I recall, the FTC defined the term 'Air Conditioning' to mean refrigerated air, not just 'air movement' in the mid-fifties. Since that time, car manufacturers could only use the word 'air conditioned' if it had cooling capabilities via a compressor and evaporator setup.

The British also used the term 'air conditioning' to mean heated and recirculated air in vehicles, and used it until sometime in the 1960's.

Craig

riversidevw
07-07-2017, 10:24 AM
The first factory air conditioning (a device which actually chilled air via a compressor) was Packard 1939. Cadillac, Buick and Oldsmobile followed in 1953.

There was a beautiful all original '39 Packard Twelve with the factory AC in the South Pasadena area a few years ago. Massive thing. (AC and the Twelve.) But it was much more widely available in Packards in '40. Seems to have taken a LOA in postwar Packards until model year '54. '54 also year for introduction on Lincolns. System in the '56 Packard Patrician my wife and I once owned worked fairly well. Sometimes would produce "snow flurries," showers of tiny ice crystals from the dash top outlets!

For many years a local friend has owned a nice '53 Chrysler Imperial. Another rather massive factory AC unit. There is no clutch on the compressor. The belt is removed for the cool season.

Interesting those liberties taken with the term before the war. But the concept wasn't widely known. Our house had a central AC system installed in 1940, one of the first residential Carrier units in this hot region. (Excessive Heat Warning posted for today, as a matter of fact.)

Trying to recall.... Studebaker first offered AC around '55? Dealer-installed? I'm more confident of the '56 availability.

riversidevw
07-07-2017, 10:38 AM
Just found a reference to Air Temp, an air conditioning division of Chrysler for many years. Gives a little more history of auto applications, a fair amount I didn't know before.

And John's reference to that DeSoto? There are known examples of '42 DeSotos with factory Air Temp AC!

https://www.allpar.com/corporate/airtemp.php

Gil

RadioRoy
07-07-2017, 11:00 AM
Nash called their deluxe heater "Conditioned Air" probably to get around the law and to dupe folks into believing they had air conditioning. They finally put real air conditioning in the Rambler in 54 or 55.

Buzzard
07-07-2017, 11:10 AM
Found an abandoned '49-52?? ('50 I think) Imperial in South Dakota a number of years ago. It was huge and needed to be with all the apparatus in the trunk.
Bill

8E45E
07-07-2017, 01:12 PM
Trying to recall.... Studebaker first offered AC around '55? Dealer-installed? I'm more confident of the '56 availability.

Mid-1955 is correct.

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?27087-55-Factory-Air-Conditioner

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?15454-Air-conditioning

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?15454-Air-conditioning

Craig

JRoberts
07-07-2017, 01:33 PM
A friend of mine had a 1940 Packard with factory air conditioning. When I first saw the car I didn't realize air conditioning began that long ago.

riversidevw
07-07-2017, 02:12 PM
Thanks for the helpful links. Just saw in one of them that the suggested 1955 uninstalled price for a dealer-supplied AC unit for a '53, '54 or '55 sedan was $547. Sizable hunk of change back then. Equivalent to $4,995 in today's dollars.


Mid-1955 is correct.

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?27087-55-Factory-Air-Conditioner

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?15454-Air-conditioning

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?15454-Air-conditioning

Craig

57pack
07-07-2017, 02:36 PM
As a aside Packard offered an option in 1941 called the "Cellarette" it was a gizmo that worked with the factory mechanical air conditioner. Was like a back seat wooden bar which also made ice cubes as you drove. Served six!

RadioRoy
07-07-2017, 03:43 PM
Wikipedia says this

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automobile_air_conditioning

Lynn
07-07-2017, 06:21 PM
Roy: Was just getting ready to post that the first units were aftermarket. Not that I am old enough to remember. But I did work with mechanics who WERE old enough to remember.

Seems I remember one guy talking about the first units having the compressor driven by something on the rear axle. Obviously it would only work with the car moving. Early on, the compressor would drag the engine down so much, it would normally kill the engine. So, unit was installed to be driven off the rear axle. That may be a total line of BS, but that is what I remember hearing almost 50 years ago. Of course, Yogi Berra said: "I can't believe all the memories I forgot".

riversidevw
07-07-2017, 07:06 PM
We once had a new '75 Volvo 245 station wagon in which the anemic engine could either operate the AC compressor or gradually propel the car merging onto a freeway on-ramp. Just not at the same time!

I'm leaning toward the rear axle driving the compressor being a total line of that other stuff. The horsepower draw would be the same...

Beginning with aftermarket? Guess it depends on what you mean by aftermarket. Roy's link describes how Packard contracted with an outside supplier for those first units in '39. But they were factory installed and serviced as Packard components. Other early examples of factory AC were companies with their own refrigeration experience: Chrysler (Airtemp), GM (Frigidaire), Nash (Kelvinator).

I'm surely no expert on aftermarket units; I seem to recall their becoming popular about the time that many postwar factory units were also coming on the market, in the mid-fifties. Decent units that could be retrofitted to a bunch of car models at a lower cost than most factory setups. Had a '56 Lincoln Capri hardtop with a Mark IV under-dash installation, quite good. No rear window tubes, no drafty overhead outlets, no lost trunk space like the fancy factory system.

53k
07-07-2017, 07:41 PM
We had a Potomac Chapter member, Paul Thrush (deceased) who air conditioned his 3R-5 truck with essentially no loss of power in the 170 cid six. His approach was to mount an electric start 10hp Briggs & Stratton engine in the bed of his truck, The condenser and evaporator were also in the bed, but the cold air was piped up to the truck cab. When he got too warm he pressed a button in the cab to start the B&S and the cab got cool. He drove that truck on our 2003 Route 66 trip, 6000 miles with the only failure being the brake light switch which he replaced in just a fee minutes. We could always tell when he turned on the AC. The B&S made a puff of black smoke when it first started.

riversidevw
07-07-2017, 07:45 PM
We had a Potomac Chapter member, Paul Thrush (deceased) who air conditioned his 3R-5 truck with essentially no loss of power in the 170 cid six. His approach was to mount an electric start 10hp Briggs & Stratton engine in the bed of his truck, The condenser and evaporator were also in the bed, but the cold air was piped up to the truck cab. When he got too warm he pressed a button in the cab to start the B&S and the cab got cool. He drove that truck on our 2003 Route 66 trip, 6000 miles with the only failure being the brake light switch which he replaced in just a fee minutes. We could always tell when he turned on the AC. The B&S made a puff of black smoke when it first started.

Shoulda been a '75 Volvo option!:cool:

Guido
07-07-2017, 08:03 PM
We had a Potomac Chapter member, Paul Thrush (deceased) who air conditioned his 3R-5 truck with essentially no loss of power in the 170 cid six. His approach was to mount an electric start 10hp Briggs & Stratton engine in the bed of his truck, The condenser and evaporator were also in the bed, but the cold air was piped up to the truck cab. When he got too warm he pressed a button in the cab to start the B&S and the cab got cool. He drove that truck on our 2003 Route 66 trip, 6000 miles with the only failure being the brake light switch which he replaced in just a fee minutes. We could always tell when he turned on the AC. The B&S made a puff of black smoke when it first started.

I think I recall following him up I-85 from the Charlotte IM.

riversidevw
07-08-2017, 10:13 AM
Very seasonal topic! Official reading here yesterday 109, expecting slightly worse today. Doing morning chores and errands before 8AM one survival tool.

First factory AC car I experienced was a brand new '57 Ford Fairlane 500 four-door hardtop, belonged to dad of a high school pal. Exterior all black, car loaded with every extra, even a dealer-installed continental kit wagging foolishly out back. A fifty mile ride in the back seat on a hot, humid Midwest day was miserable... no discernible air flow to the back seat (and frankly not contributing much to the front but fan noise), obligatory closed windows. A big gaudy black sauna. Besides, the thinly padded yellow and black rear seat cushions (covered in clear plastic) were about equivalent to sitting on the floor. Haven't been a big fan of '57 Fords since.

57pack
07-08-2017, 09:21 PM
Feel your pain, had a similar experience with a 1966 Mustang GT.
Summer of 1967 went to Expo67 riding in the backseat of that Mustang.
Always hated that car.