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AC Problem

When I got my 88 80 Q early this year it happened not 
to have an AC belt. The previous owner said it used to 
work but had just died. Closer examination showed that
the belt had probably snapped due to old age. Last
wknd I spent quite a number of hours fighting to put a 
belt in. When it was finally in place. I tested the AC system
which to my disappointment just blew uncooled air. I took
the car to an ac specialist yesterday and took a $45 hit 
for them to tell me that my compressor was leaking and
that it'd probably end up costing me $700-800 to get it all
fixed. The name of the place is All Tune and Lube. Anyways
I have come to a point where I tend to seek second opinions.
The reason for that being, that I once went to Midas and
got an estimate for $380 to fix my brake master cylinder. 
I went to a mech and he fixed the sticky pedal problem by
removing my faulty cruise control switch for $20. Anyways
when I press the ac button the compressor seems to run
just fine and seems to "kick in". Question is, are there other
possible explanations for this other than a faulty compressor ?
Are there cheaper ways < $300 to fix/replace the compressor ? 
Would I have to buy a new ac drier ( recommended by All Tune and
Lube) ? I consider myself a little mechanically inclined and
would be able to possibly do some if not most of the job. Thanks
for any info. 

Mike Theuri
88 80 Q