Following the mantra "2 steps forward, 1 step back", I went ahead and pulled the dash AND heater back out of 1010 today to re-address some upholstery issues which I'll post separately.  Anyway, that exposed my original heater hose solution (see below) that is visually hidden when things are assembled.   Functionally this solution is probably OK -  a mix of Pep Boys 1/2" hose bits with some aluminum tube - but it could certainly be cleaner and fit better too.

Presumably the original hose would have been European 12mm vice 1/2", since that's the size of both the central tubes & the heater core.  Any pics or original parts out there?! 

My car came with a mess of disintegrating hose parts, cobbled together in the worst way; no way it left the factory like that.  1/2" silicone hose might be worth a try, especially some long-ish elbows cut to length, if available.  Appreciate any thoughts re this ningling issue!  Nate

heater hose


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Nate, do the hoses normally run through the cabin or is that configuration unique to your car? There is a current thread over in the Pantera section regarding a similar topic. I was surprised to see Pex plumbing material being used... Perhaps that is an option for you.

I have not gone that far with my car. Unfortunately (although not OE spec type repair) the proper shaped hose would not be readily available and similar repair would need to be done; rubber elbowed tube, joiner with hose clamps and 2nd elbowed tube.

Whilst driving my Pantera home on its maiden voyage, after purchase, one of the heater hoses located within the interior split. It filled the cabin with steam in about 2 seconds. I couldn't see where I was going. I happened to be on the Hollywood Freeway at rush hour, in traffic, doing about 65 mph. I couldn't see the road or cars ahead of me.

I don't care if it spoils the cars originality. Rubber heater hoses do not belong within the passenger cabin.  Replace them with metal tubing and tube fittings.

I just replaced mine with 3/8" soft flexible copper refrigeration tubing with plastic coating as I intended to push it thru the old metal tubes. I could not push it thru so I removed the old tubes and ran the copper. I used compression fittings on the ends. I believe you can buy 1/2" tubing as well from McMastercarr or Grainger. 




Nate, if '1076 were original here then the hoses from the heater core were just straight--probably better to use formed (90' bend on the heater core end) hose instead.  

 Where I remember having problems was between the Engine and the Y-adapter (this picture '1046 again). As I remember the stub hose decreased radius to something I had a lot of trouble finding...But everything else is generic hose, nothing special---Lee




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On 878, the heater had some odd hose work also......  First that I can recall, is that one side came out of the box and immediately required a 90 degree turn.  Well, no hose on the planet is going to fit that unless preformed.......

I scoured the parts stores and found nothing.  I scoured the wrecking yards and found some molded hoses on a Ford Taurus (IIRC!!!!) with a 4 cyl.....or was it a turbo......??????  This hose had  at least one 90 molded in.......  

IIRC, the tubing coming out of the box has no retaining rib....and appears to be held from moving by its close proximity to the dash!    I never took the thing out of the car, but if I was going to do it again, I would have soldered on a new end to the thing, getting it away from the dash to a place where a proper hose could be attached.

BUTTTTTTTT! This is an area of the car which many changes were made over time and there are several revisions.........sounds like yours may be a slight bit different if you are using 1/2" hose.......I seem to recall a 3/8" or so diameter, but I could be wrong.....   and I do not remember how I connected to the tubes coming out of the center spine.....!!!! Old brain.........

Good luck!!! Keep us posted on what you end up doing!  I'm sure others will benefit!

Gents, thanks for your input & ideas. I agree a hard line approach would be optimal from safety standpoint but at least for now I opted for a basic solution that will get the cooling system back on line soonest. 

Steve, funny you mention the lack of a retaining rib on the heater core...I never had that exact problem, but the ribs on my steel tubes coming from the chassis WERE compromised by corrosion and were useless. Bottom line I ended up trimming the tubes back several inches, positioning the sealing clamps in the front trunk area, vice under/behind the heater (see image; this approach cut the number of hose joints in half, compared to the previous solution).  Since the ribs were gone anyway, concern for originality wasn't an overwhelming factor. I went with silicone hose sections made in the UK for a Morris Minor - 1/2" ID vice the optional 12mm but should work fine.31011


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Looks good!!!!  The one thing I did do, to address overheating THE CABIN in about 2 minutes......cuz it I put two ball valves on the flat area above the  spine, one accessible from either side...... It doesn't address George's very valid point about hose in the cabin.... but there are plenty of American classics that had a few inches of hose in the cabin where they then connected with the heater cores......

I would leave one valve open just enuf.....and then open and close the other one (which I could more easily get to)   to "on and off" the heater.

Now, the original valves were located in the engine compartment...making it a firedrill  of doors and hatches to turn the heat on or off......PLUS such a tangle of hose.........

The purpose of the all thehoses, unique valves,  and "Y's" in the system was to be able to circulate water while the heater valves are closed.   Without this feature, the system will gather air in the water pump and cause cavitation leading to engine overheating!  Don't ask how I know weren't pretty!

Modern components (made after the 60's 70's), namely the shut off valves, now have a small hole in the butterfly blade that allows some water to circulate...satisfying the need to get rid of air bubbles out of the pump when they occur.  During the 60's/70's Ford used "H" pipe adapters or designs that had a physical crossover that took care of this function when the valves shut off the water flow 100%.

When I got 878 way back when, my water valves weren't even present in my car any longer, and I had never seen one.... (only later once I owned a Fiat 124 and found a Goose with the valves still present, did I figure out what was what!) ...... I didn't worry about being accurate with this aspect. Reliability and functionality was more important since my intent was to "drive the wheels off the car"! I was more concerned with reducing "hose clutter" with those stupid valves!  So I ran only two hoses from the engine,  to the under car tubes.  Unknowingly, a previous owner had installed a 1970 water pump which put ALL of the hoses on one side of the I was severely crowded for hose room at the time.  LATER this was discovered and corrected..... but I still stayed with the two hose thing.   In those two hose, I installed "T"s that had a 3/8" outlet/downleg on them, and used small diameter hose to make the "H" connection between the two hoses.  The small diameter hose fit MUCH nicer from side to side on the top rail of that engine compartment along with the wiring........instead of 5/8" hose! This took care of the anti-cavitation thing and I never had another problem from this area of the cooling system again.

I do need to comment on Nate's comment about the eroded tube ends.....

1) mine were bad bad bad, and my large metal pipe at the water pump had been eroded to the point of non-use, where it was cut up and used to splice rubber hose together..... ALL BECAUSE of NO GROUND STRAP on the engine.  Some of you may recall me preaching on this one...... burned starter contacts on the armature....funky starting...eroding aluminum parts...anode on the radiator capall disappearing.......  All of that ended once the ground strap was returned!!!

2)  This sort of wear can also be caused by caustic anti-freeze caused by lack of maintenance.  That stuff needs to be flushed out every couple of doesn't last forever. Just do it. Your car will love you for it!

Hope this helps!  Nate, GREAT PROGRESS!!!!! How exciting!!!

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