This started a long time ago when I eliminated the factory AC hardware from this car. And since that time I have wanted to finish the elimination process by removing the condenser from the interior air box. And while the interior was stripped down we decided that this was a good time to do it. After browsing through the factory manual instructions on how to change the condenser/heater coil it became readily apparent this was no small task. It requires pretty much a complete dash-ectomy. Including gutting it, unbolting it and pulling it totally away from the body in order to clear the box assemblies from under the dash. Holy Crap! Batman!
So I jumped straight in with both feet and a fist full of tools. It was exactly what the book said and more. But after a few hours of disassembly the dash was loose. The air box and blower box were pulled out from under. This is where the discovery process begins. As the boxes were being removed a couple of mount brackets just kinda fell out. Then we were separating the box halves we were missing half of the compression clips. We also discovered that the box seal for the AC coil had slipped out of place and warped the fiberglass of the air box. Not dangerous but still unexpected. It turns out they replaced the blower motor and did a horrendous job of wiring it. We fixed that easily.
It appears from the clues that someone, before me, had attempted some sort of service on the air box not knowing (i.e. service manual) that you have to remove the dash to clear the box. The key word here is ATTEMPTED! That is where they ripped the mounts out trying to free the unit from the firewall. The 6 missing clips are apparently more evidence of this failed attempt. As for the seal that warped the case, it looks as though it may have been that way for a long bit and all these years had permanently deformed the case.
Once we had the blower and airbox out it was a pretty simple task to eliminate all of the internal vacuum driven traps and flaps associated with the AC part. I only kept the trap door that controls the heat temperature. The other part is that I am going to set the blend door for the floor / defrost to 50/50 and close off the recirc door. We eliminated all other controls. The box is simpler and lighter now. On to the repairs.
Pretty much a couple of quick fixes because its all hidden under the dash. The warped case problem was easily done by putting in a piece of flat stock along the edge and bolting it in. The broken brackets were fixed by forming some exterior scabs using flat stock and bolting the bracket to the scab.