I took the bracket screw loose at the flapper door and moved the cable by hand and it opened and closed the door. There did not appear to be any obstruction or binding. Check.
Took the center dash apart and what fun that was. The tuner knob for the radio had a washer and capture nut (like what you hold a fender emblem on with) pushed on the shaft to hold the radio bezel in place. When I finally got it off, the radio just fell into the dash. Uh oh, new problem.
The power knob closest to drivers side had the proper threaded outer shaft with a 5/8" nut. I assume the passenger side should have the same thing and I can see the threaded outer shaft down in the radio! What fun. Are those two nuts (around the knob shafts) and tightened up against the radio bezel the only thing that hold the radio in place? It seams like it would bounce around with just those, is there another bracket or something I am missing? It appears the radio was just leaning against the ash tray housing and someone had added some black tape to keep it from bouncing around too much. Don't you just love other people's messes! I might have to start a new topic for this one.
On to the HVAC lever. It appears all the cables are connected. It also appears a stud/rivet/spot weld not sure what you call it has broken lose on that top lever and that is what is allowing it to flop around. See the two red holes in the pic below:
If I line up the holes and stick something through them, the lever still works and appears to get firmer. I did not hook up the flapper door cable bracket to test yet. Does this sound like the problem? If so, any suggestions on what to use to fix it? Maybe I can get a screw to tap into those two pieces....it looks like it would be a real pain to get the HVAC unit out of the dash. Do you have to take it out from the bottom? I can't see how it comes out of the dash since the tabs on the side are behind the main metal part of the dash....
Next thing. From what I can see, all of the electrical connections look hooked up and everything worked (except the vent flapper door) since I have been driving the car. HOWEVER, I found a three spade connection with a black and green wire running to it just haning out up by the HVAC unit:
Any idea what that connection goes to?
Man oh man, it's never simple!
A sincere thanks for all of the help guys.