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Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon
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MsTaboo
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 6:02 pm    Post subject: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

I looked into reviving an old thread to ask this question but none were quite specific enough. So here goes.

I'm installing all new hoses and fittings for my ac system (Eaton EZ-Clip fittings and Aeroquip hoses) Due to limited availability of fittings I had to buy one of the new Nostalgic trinary switches like the one in this thread;
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=592399&highlight=trinary

And here;
http://nostalgicac.com/oil-flush-switches/ac-press...-fans.html

My question is on the wiring. The diagram that comes with the switch shows one of the blue and one of the black wires being twisted together. Why not attach the four wires to the corresponding four wires on the Vanagon harness?
And of course, which combination would that be?
Anyone have any luck?
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Farf
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 7:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Yes, you can mirror what you have existing with your new switch. Not sure what the new switch diagram is showing you but if it has 4 wires, identify the 2 used for the high/low pressure safety and the 2 used for the fan circuit and wire as shown in the Bentley pg. 97.144.

Current track 24 shows the pressure safety circuit and current track 23 shows the fan circuit. Your fan will run on medium speed when this switch makes and high speed fan will energize with the existing 107C radiator temp. switch.

Good luck...
Mike
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 7:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Oops, should have included the diagram!
http://nostalgicac.com/media/PDF/TRINARYSCHEMATIC.pdf
Blue wires are the fan and black are the pressure switch I assume.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 8:37 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

The diagram from NA looks like its been simplified beyond my capacity to make any sense of it. Very Happy

You can Ohm out the black wires on your new switch, if they are the High/Low safety you should have continuity, the blue wires should show an open circuit. You should not get any readings between any of the blue/black wires when testing with all wires separated.

Edit: Page 7 of PDF below shows a bit more detail using your 4 wire switch.

http://www.vintageair.com/AC%20Basics/acbasics51412.pdf

Mike
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 10:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Farf wrote:
The diagram from NA looks like its been simplified beyond my capacity to make any sense of it. Very Happy
Laughing Laughing That was my take on it!
Thanks for your help.
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 1:04 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

I'd put both of those NA diagrams in the horrible category.

In any case, to use the NA 4 wire switch in place of the Vanagon 4 wire switch, just connect the blue wires of the new switch to where the blue wires of the old switch went. Then the same for the other 2 wires, with black on them. They go where the VW switch red/black wires went. Don't worry about which blue wire is which. Don't worry about which black wire is which.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 2:20 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

I used one with the SC front AC from VA.

The NA & VA diagrams confused me, the SC manual was plain wrong.

Andrew Flint figured it all out.
He is a lifesaver Wink
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 4:53 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

The switch is designed so that under normal operating pressures the system operates, the power is delivered to the clutch relay when the AC is turned on.

When/if a malfunction occurs such as over pressurization, the trinary switch. Turns off the power feed to the clutch and simultaneously turns on the radiator cooling fan just as the radiator fan thermoswitch would do.
If you lose you refrigerant, the system will turn off.... Or never turn on initially.

I Would wire in my new switch as VW did.

Current path 21 goes to current path 36 which energizes the Rad fan resistor to turn on the cooling fan.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2015 5:08 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Farf wrote:
The diagram from NA looks like its been simplified beyond my capacity to make any sense of it. Very Happy

You can Ohm out the black wires on your new switch, if they are the High/Low safety you should have continuity, the blue wires should show an open circuit. You should not get any readings between any of the blue/black wires when testing with all wires separated.

Edit: Page 7 of PDF below shows a bit more detail using your 4 wire switch.

http://www.vintageair.com/AC%20Basics/acbasics51412.pdf

Mike


With the switch on the bench, neither color should ohm out as a complete circuit. The fan switch will only close on very high pressure 242psi, the clutch portion will turn off with zero pressure and only close after some refrigerant gas has been introduced into the system 29psi.


Low pressure is Black...... Compressor clutch
High pressure is Blue...... Rad cooling fan

As already mentioned, it matters not which blue goes in or out, nor which black.

On the Van .... Trinary Black goes to Blue and Trinary blue goes to Red/Black.
I would use a label maker, P-Touch or similar, and stick it on the switch to let Future Owners know (or to remind me years from now) that this is a Nostalgic Air Trinary switch with a 7/16- 20 thread.

Dave
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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 5:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

I would like to revisit this question before I go to fill my system.
There seems to be conflicting information here.

Crazyvwvanman is saying connect the blue trinary switch wires to the same wires the blue original switch wires went to, and the same for the black.

And djkeev is saying the opposite.

Some other info I came across on the net says to never interconnect the blue and black trinary switch wires and the info that came with the switch shows the wires being connected.
http://nostalgicac.com/media/PDF/TRINARYSCHEMATIC.pdf
Other info for the same switch shows one of the blue wires being a ground.
http://www.vintageair.com/AC%20Basics/acbasics51412.pdf
Help! I will freely admit I'm not good at reading electrical. Seems to me that if I get this wrong the compressor will not come on, or I'll blow a hose!
Most of the info for this switch is based on custom built hotrods and not geared towards installed systems. I would have used the stock VW trinary switch if there had been a new port available for it from Eaton.

Here's a pic of what I have going. I reused the old switch's plug to make it easier to effect changes.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Thanks for any help with this!
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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 7:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

MsTaboo,

My vision sucks, could you identify the original wire colors from the van going into your new trinary switch connector. No mention of the Red/White wire shown in the Bentley going to the blue wire on the switch (current track 24 page 97.144)

Operationally, the fan part of the switch only turns on the medium speed fan. The high speed fan is turned on only when the thermo switch hits 102C and also shuts off the compressor at that point.

I believe "crazyvwvanman" has got it right. Its good to double check though.

Mike
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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2016 10:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Farf wrote:
MsTaboo,
My vision sucks, could you identify the original wire colors from the van going into your new trinary switch connector. No mention of the Red/White wire shown in the Bentley going to the blue wire on the switch (current track 24 page 97.144)
Operationally, the fan part of the switch only turns on the medium speed fan. The high speed fan is turned on only when the thermo switch hits 102C and also shuts off the compressor at that point.
I believe "crazyvwvanman" has got it right. Its good to double check though.
Mike

After spending a couple hours laboriously pouring over the Bentley and matching up the current tracks I believe that Dave has it right.
New trinary switch black wire to blue on the VW plug.
New trinary switch blue wire to rd/black on the VW plug.
Just the opposite of the original VW trinary switch wire colors.

The wiring diagram in the Bentley sucks. It does not do a good job of tracking the wire color or wire size. (at least for this application) Plus VW could have done a better job of keeping the same color wire along it's path.

I have swapped the trinary wires to match above. (black to blue, blue to red/black)
If anyone thinks this is wrong please help.

The original wires from the VW trinay switch and coming out of the VW plug and going towards the relays, etc. are as follows:

Rd/Blk to Rd/Blue
Rd/Blk to Rd/Blk (has 12v a/c on) engine not running
Blue to Rd/Wht (heavy wire) (has 12v a/c on) engine not running
Blue to Rd/Blue (heavy wire)

Farf if you go to my gallery and click on the picture there it will appear larger.
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PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 12:11 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

So the new trinary swich wire colors and switch action are opposite the OE VW switch. Glad you double checked. Hope your project continues to go well.

Mike
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2016 7:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

MsTaboo .. did your trinary wiring that you describe work correctly? i have to wire mine in and there's a lot of conflicting information ..
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 10:13 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

The post by Crazyvanman above is correct. I have the Nostalgic Air trinary switch in my system. I can't believe how bad the wiring "diagram" they have is!

Part of the confusion comes from the fact that Nostalgic Air does not use relays for the 12V circuit to the compressor, unlike the Vanagon system, which is further complicated by their awful wiring diagram.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2016 2:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

There's actually no continuity on either circuit on my switch, and there shouldn't be since both are supposed to be open at low or no pressure (below 20psi).

Here's some info from another board as to how the switch appears to work:

http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/trinary-switch-vintage-air-96459.html

Seems that the black wires would be the pressure cut off for the compressor, closed between 20psi and 380psi.

Blue wires for the rad fan, open below 220psi.

The van has an additional relay to cut off power to the compressor (using 87a leg) when the rad fan is on high speed.

As to where the wires all go, looks like there are several different configurations. My 86 originally had 2 switches, one low, one high, each with their own connector, and different colors, going through 3 relays. I haven't connected it yet.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

I have an 87 and I've removed the two switch fitting in the C pillar in favor of a single fitting for a trinary switch and I have some info for 86-88 owners who are switching from the OE two-sender setup to a single trinary:

New trinary switch blue wires (fan control) = black/red wires on van
Trinary switch black wires (pressure cutouts) = red/blue and red/white wires on van

Looking at the diagram, it appears that the older vans did NOT have a high pressure cutoff for the compressor - only low. (!???!!!??) The only purpose the OE high switch appears to serve is to energize the "2nd stage" radiator fan relay in the event of high system pressures. So installing the trinary switch is definitely an upgrade, if I'm reading it right.

I actually have the rear relay harness section from a newer van and even though the wire colors are different (and the pressure switch connectors are different) the connections all appear to be the same. I was going to install it in place of my existing harness but I can't see any reason to.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:49 am    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Thank you. I'll be getting to that point soon, in a Bostig configuration, after I finish my A/C cabinet.
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Wiring new Nostalgic Trinary a/c switch to Vanagon Reply with quote

Hey guys!

It seems like you guys have figured out the whole AC wiring and I have a couple questions.
I'm using a 1986 radiator fan harness from an AC van into an older van and a SmallCar Vintage air AC.

I've been looking for hours online and on the Bentley and a few wires need to be connected still.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


This the R/BK wire for speed 1, Tee'd at the fan resistor. Can I wire it in parallel with the wire that powers the compressor clutch but upstream from the trinary switch ( coming out of 87 on SmallCar compressor relay).
Should I replace the relay with one of higher amps or it can handle the clutch and fan at once?

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Is it possible to not have the fan automatically run on speed 1 at highway speeds to preserve its life?

I have this BK/Y wire coming off the high speed (3rd) relay, it's connected to the same wire from the radiator thermoswitch R/BL. Any use of it like for shutting off the compressor ( but the trinary switch would have done it already??...)
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


And is this small R/BL wire going to the trinary switch? It comes off 86 on the 2nd speed AC relay? I think yes but... not sure of anything anymore....

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Thanks for your help Smile

Alika
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