Re: re-installing a/c after 5 years
Nothing looks better (or more authentic) inside the car than the factory air setup.
I had mine off too and faced a similar situation, but chose a hybrid solution (partially related to R-134a conversion). I cleaned and restored everything (even separated the suitcase to clean the 40+ years of mung in the evaporator), replaced the wiring harness, relay, fan, vent hoses (2.75 inch) and fan resistor.
Instead of taking a chance on the compressor, hoses and condenser (receiver dryer is always replaced after system is opened), I converted these to R-134a use with a Sanden compressor, receiver dryer, new barrier type hoses and a parallel condenser which Custom Auto Air sells as a kit for about $500. It helps that I live in Tampa, FL and just went in for them to crimp the hoses after I cut and fit them. Also, at no cost they modify the POA valve (1/4 to 1/2 turn CCW) for R-134a usage.
After you get everything hooked up, just take the car into just about any repair shop; have them vacuum out everything for 3/4 of a hour at 30 inches of Hg, recharge with 3 ounces of PAG-100 oil and about 2.5 lbs of R-134a. Voila! Cold air.
Piece of cake, air blows cold.
You can of course reuse everything by getting a R-134a conversion kit ($40?), just follow the directions and roll the dice.
Cold air is what separates us from the cavemen.