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Old 07-06-2005, 10:43 AM   #1
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Securing Coleman A/C Shroud

So I went up on the roof to take off the a/c shroud and paint it...was all yellowed and icky looking. The unit was only held on by 2 of the original 4 acorn nuts on studs...others had rusted/snapped off during previous maintenance. Now it seems that a 3rd has also gone south. the stud had broken free and just spun w/ the nut. to way to get ahold of the other end inside the a/c unit, so I had to cut it off. So now, there is only one reliable fastener, and it doesn't look too reliable at that.

So, I took the shroud off and set it aside, and decided to investigate how these "studs" sticking up through were attached. So I took off the galvanized cover that covers the front end of the ac, and houses the evaporator coil (? I think). Flipped it over, and it looks like these studs were just welded on. and they're all rusted and crappy...I have no way to fix this.

So I'm wondering now, with everything re-assembled, and the shroud being held in place by one fastener, how to secure it in place? the only thing I can think of is a few sheet metal screws (stainless), and perhaps a dab of silly-cone? (although, water infiltration is probably not a big worry with the design of this unit; any leakage would just drop to the pan and out on the roof....). knowing now the location of all the important parts hiding within the galvanized housing, shouldn't be any problem to avoid puncturing anything.

on a side note: you wouldn't believe the number of mud-dawber nests I pulled out of this thing. never seen anything like it. there had to be a dozen of them. took an hour just to get that mess cleaned out. good grief!!!
on the plus side, I started cleaning the shroud w/ castrol super clean...turns out, the shroud wasn't "yellowed" at all. the super-clean cleaned it right up. looks like new!!! I had planned on painting it w/ the krylon "fusion" paint, which I used on the interior shroud. but it wasn't necessary.
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Old 07-06-2005, 11:59 AM   #2
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I just took the cover off of our (an Armstrong) this weekend and I knocked out about 10 hornet's nests that were both old and new. Pretty disgusting mess, and I vacuumed everything up. Our shroud, and I don't think it is original, was held on, as you say, with sheet metal screws. The PO or whoever, then covered the screws with silicone sealant. It was something of a mess, and I'm thinking what to do when I reattach.

John
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Old 07-06-2005, 02:42 PM   #3
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All of the Armstrong's I have seen from the top have the shrouds installed as you described. I think it was done like that from the factory.

The only thing I have ever added were some fender washers to spread the stress out over a larger surface of the joint.
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Old 07-06-2005, 02:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
.

So I'm wondering now, with everything re-assembled, and the shroud being held in place by one fastener, how to secure it in place? the only thing I can think of is a few sheet metal screws (stainless), and perhaps a dab of silly-cone? (although, water infiltration is probably not a big worry with the design of this unit; any leakage would just drop to the pan and out on the roof....). knowing now the location of all the important parts hiding within the galvanized housing, shouldn't be any problem to avoid puncturing anything.
Since the cover is old this is not a big deal. If you were to replace the cover with a new aftermarket shroud you may have trouble reinstalling it.

One way to reattach a stud is to use a pan head machine screw, feed it thru the metal and use a nut to hold it in the sheet metal. You may need to use a couple of lock washers. Then you can use a washer and nut thru the shroud. I would suggest stainless so you only need to do it one time.
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Old 07-06-2005, 04:39 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewkid64
Since the cover is old this is not a big deal. If you were to replace the cover with a new aftermarket shroud you may have trouble reinstalling it.

One way to reattach a stud is to use a pan head machine screw, feed it thru the metal and use a nut to hold it in the sheet metal. You may need to use a couple of lock washers. Then you can use a washer and nut thru the shroud. I would suggest stainless so you only need to do it one time.
That's what was done on the one I just had to cut off. except, they didn't use stainless so the nut just froze to the screw. after a few turns w/ a wrench, I realized the whole assembly was turning together, and nothing was getting any looser. except my temper, that is.... my neighbors were probably thinking "hey, what is eric cartman doing on top of that trailer??"

screws would be a whole lot easier. wouldn't have to remove the galvanized interior cover (removing is easy; replacing is not ), drill out the rusted stubs of the old studs, etc, etc.
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Old 07-06-2005, 08:52 PM   #6
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The Shroud and the Nut!

Here is a tip from the wet NW. Befor you tighten things down, APPLY ANTI-SEIZE COMPOUND to the threads and use S.S. washers and lock nuts. These simple steps will save you meny cuss words should you have to visit again.

Griff
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Old 07-06-2005, 09:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
That's what was done on the one I just had to cut off. except, they didn't use stainless so the nut just froze to the screw. after a few turns w/ a wrench, I realized the whole assembly was turning together, and nothing was getting any looser. except my temper, that is.... my neighbors were probably thinking "hey, what is eric cartman doing on top of that trailer??"

screws would be a whole lot easier. wouldn't have to remove the galvanized interior cover (removing is easy; replacing is not ), drill out the rusted stubs of the old studs, etc, etc.
Chuck, from what I gathered on your posts, the mounting bolts on your Coleman A/C shroud were welded ion a frame, then the shroud was bolted to it. Why not just drill out the rotted bolts, install 4 new stainless bolts, with keeper clips, and bolt the shroud back on?
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Old 07-07-2005, 10:09 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
Chuck, from what I gathered on your posts, the mounting bolts on your Coleman A/C shroud were welded ion a frame, then the shroud was bolted to it. Why not just drill out the rotted bolts, install 4 new stainless bolts, with keeper clips, and bolt the shroud back on?

Because I don't know what a "keeper clip" is.

and also, it would be a royal PITA to access the other side of the bolts, which are actually attached to a galvanized box that encases the a/c guts (evaporator/condesner). (easy to take apart; hard to put back together).
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Old 07-07-2005, 10:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
Because I don't know what a "keeper clip" is.
A keeper clip is a spring loaded c shaped clip that slides over the edge of the metal and acts as a hardened hole for the bolt to go in. There are hundreds of them used on you truck, they act like a nut, but the engineering makes then stay in place while you thread a bolt or screw into them. They come in many sizes.

Using one assumes that the holes that would be made by the removal of the studs are near enough to the panel edge to clip one on.......
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Old 07-07-2005, 11:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thenewkid64
A keeper clip is a spring loaded c shaped clip that slides over the edge of the metal and acts as a hardened hole for the bolt to go in. There are hundreds of them used on you truck, they act like a nut, but the engineering makes then stay in place while you thread a bolt or screw into them. They come in many sizes.

Using one assumes that the holes that would be made by the removal of the studs are near enough to the panel edge to clip one on.......
ok, seen those. that wouldn't work in this case. the original studs aren't close to an edge...and the cover isn't a flat panel; its edges fold down, and is attached to the "walls" of the box w/ screws from the side.
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Old 07-07-2005, 02:07 PM   #11
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OK, I got it!

Simple fix.

Replace the AC!

I know that is something you are trying to postpone, possibly forever.

Unfortunately the only solution is going to be removing the sheet metal cover and using bolts and jam nuts..... don't shoot the messenger
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Old 07-07-2005, 03:29 PM   #12
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I thought you said that sheet metal screws would be ok?

let me tell ya....I am sick to death of air conditioners. I've had my hands on 5 different ones in the past month, and I've about had enough!! just got off the phone w/ my mechanic, who just replaced the evaporator in my truck. 700 bucks (dash has to be removed to access it...all labor). There goes my new set of axles.....

I don't know how we lived this long without them. When I was a kid, a/c's were a luxury that only rich people had, either in automobiles, OR houses. now, we can't seem to live without the stupid things.
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Old 07-07-2005, 06:37 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuck
Because I don't know what a "keeper clip" is.

and also, it would be a royal PITA to access the other side of the bolts, which are actually attached to a galvanized box that encases the a/c guts (evaporator/condesner). (easy to take apart; hard to put back together).
Okay, solution #2
Drill out the bolts, tap the holes, and thread new bolts and washers into the newly threaded holes. No disassembly should be needed, if all goes well.
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Old 07-07-2005, 06:48 PM   #14
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Nothing like a good caveat

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...if all goes well.
Aye, therein lies the rub!

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