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Everything posted by biggman100

  1. That sounds like my dad with his newer vehicles. But, my dad also has older trucks he drives like he is qualifying for a nascar race. And i know how you feel about how much you have spent on parts. With what i have spent on the last 5 Dakotas, and the last 3 Subarus, i probably could have bought 3 new Subarus.
  2. All is not lost though, you can still use royal purple in the transfer case and axles, and in the engine.
  3. This is yet another one i found in the midst of getting lost last weekend. Its on Molleytown rd, in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, about an hour or so drive from Philadelphia, Harrisburg, or Lancaster, and at most a couple hours from the Maryland and New Jersey boarders. Because we were on a limited schedule, i didnt get much of a chance to check it out while i was there, but, i did find their website, http://rc4x4.org/, which has their full schedule. It looks like this place is open most weekends for events and general off roading year round, as they have an event weekend the weekend before, and the weekend after christmas. There schedule is listed towards the bottom of their home page, which also shows videos of some of their events. They also list fees under the information tab, and have an FAQ section, as well as list office and owner/director phone numbers and email addresses.
  4. I thought i would weigh in on this, after someone asked me if there was any benefit to doing this conversion. According to what i have read from different sources, not only is ethanol rougher on fuel and exhaust systems, but also gets worse fuel mileage, and, in some vehicles, such as the Chevy Tahoe that one site, Consumer Reports, tested, significantly worse fuel mileage. There report can be found here, http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/2011/01/the-great-ethanol-debate/index.htm. There report shows that the Chevy Tahoe they tested went from 21 MPG on regular gas, to 15 MPG on E85 (highway numbers), and their acceleration also dropped a bit as well. They also showed that E85 produced acetaldehyde, which the EPA lists as a probable carcinogen, although the tester did say that acetaldehyde may not be as bad as some of the emissions produced by regular gasoline. Another point i found interesting, and is a direct quote, "Using intermediate blends in non-FFVs can cause increased emissions and catalytic converter wear, as well as premature deterioration of fuel-system components, because ethanol is corrosive. FFVs use special fuel tanks, lines, and pumps designed to be more corrosion resistant." FFV's meaning Flex Fuel Vehicles.
  5. Megatron, while my experience isnt with the newer 48RE, it is however with several older Dodge A518's, A500's, and A904's, one of which in now sitting in my back yard because i used the wrong fluid. Anyway, i have several early model Dakotas, notably from 1991 to 1995, and one 2000 Dakota, and i have went through a host of transmission issues with them. With the 1991, i had the transmission rebuilt, and instead of using ATF+4, which is what was recommended for it, i used Royal Purple, which was supposedly a direct equivalent, and less than 8000 miles later, it lost 4th gear, and started slipping in the other gears as well. I had it rebuilt, again, and this time, i actually used, to be honest, walmart brand ATF+4, and it lasted more than 90,000 miles, until i tried to tow way too heavy of a trailer and burnt it up again. I also have a 1993, with an A500, that my brother was using, and put 3 quarts of regular ATF in, which caused it to burn up in less than 10,000 miles. I know they are older Dakotas, but those lessons taught me that when it comes to Dodge trucks, using the wrong fluid will come back on you later. As for the transfer case, i normally use a full synthetic ATF in the Dakotas, and i havent seem to have had any problems there so far.
  6. I showed my cousin the wikipedia link, and now he is using that and some other sites he found to see what parts are there to maybe build one of the two. One question i have though, that may not be answerable, is, did the 150 and 170 use the same frame? The reason i ask is there is only one frame that we can find, and, the one cab is complete, even though the seats are ripped and shredded, but, i dont want to get the cab off the blocks it sits on, only to find it wont fit the frame we have. One thing that neither of us can seem to find is frame specs, such as width, length, and position of cab mounts. It may take a couple years, but i would like to see if we could get one up and running, using mostly the parts we already have. We did find what seems to be a complete 4 and 6 cylinder engine, but no transmissions yet. The barn is also a major mess, so who knows what we will find as we dig things out. And, last question for now, since the wikipedia article didnt seem to state it, is, what transfer case did they use?
  7. Megatron, just a thought. You said you want to know how much of an increase you would get if your truck was stock, with the EFI live tuner. One idea, if your dad has the same truck, but his is all stock, would be to plug your tuner in to his truck, and see what changes it makes, good or bad. The downside, of course, would be that he sees a major improvement and then wants to keep the tuner. Also, once you see how his is on the tuner, you might not like yours as much.
  8. Unless your label is different, the label they use actually says, " Chrysler recommends you remove the ball and ball mount when your vehicle is not actually in use for towing". At least, thats what the label on a friend of mine's says, that he just had the recall done on.
  9. Moses, yes, we swapped the blown 5.2 in the 1995 4x4 with a 5.9 from a 1995 van. We used the original A518 transmission that was in the truck, and bolted the 5.9 to it. So far we havent had any issues with it at all. We have also used that truck for logging in the woods, using low range quite a bit, and it has held up very well over medium sized rocks, and very muddy and slippery terrain without any glitch in shifting or slow speed holding either. We dont really beat on it, and mainly use it for normal driving, so i cant say if the transmission will hold up under any abuse, and with it being recently finished, i cant say yet how well it will hold up long term either. Only time will tell. As for the gas mileage question, yesterday we took both trucks on a 386 mile round trip to move a friend, and the 1994 with the 3.9 and 5 speed averaged 24 MPG, and the 1995 with the 5.9 and automatic averaged 21 MPG. I dont know if i just got lucky with both trucks, but they both seem to get, at least to me, amazing mileage on a tank of gas. For a comparison, my old 2000 Durango never got better than 18 MPG combined, and my sister's 2001 2WD 3.9 Dakota seems to average around 19 MPG. I have heard though, the 1997 to 2004 (third generation) Dakota does average worse mileage than the 1991 to 1996 Dakotas.
  10. I did some research on this for a friend who was having issues with the dealer doing the recall, and came across some info that may explain why the european recall doesnt allow for the installation of a towbar in the recall. First, i came across this, As of the 1st of August 1998 all Passenger Carrying Vehicles up to 3500 kg Gross Vehicle Weight (M1 Vehicles) can only be fitted with European Type Approved towbars if the vehicle has received European Whole Vehicle Type Approval. Non M1 vehicles, Light Commercial Vehicles and private imports from outside the EEC are not required to use Approved Towbars. Then, i came across this in another article, The Liberty, Patriot, and Cherokee have never been tested, and have not received (ECWVTA) certification. This is a direct quote from the article when they discussed the Patriot, Despite being launched here in 2007, the Patriot has never been tested. The aging offering is set for replacement by a new compact SUV that will fill the role of both the Patriot and its edgier Compass sibling from 2016. Later in the article they also mention the Cherokee and Liberty as not being certified either. I may be understanding this wrong, but, if i am understanding it right, because those jeep models have never received the certification, then under European law, they cant be fitted with a towbar of any kind, which is why the recall doesnt allow for it in europe.
  11. I wanted to add a couple pics to this, some i took recently, as well as a scan of an old post card showing a miners cabin from the 1930's, that still sits on the side of the very steep hill about 80 feet up from the canyon floor. The first one shows the canyon from the vistors center at the top of the canyon. On the right side you will see a thin gray line. That is actually the base of the canyon, next to the river, that was once the rail bed, and is now a hiking trail. The second shows one of the horse and buggy rigs that you can ride on through the base of the canyon, and the third one is the old post card.
  12. I looked up the Centerforce clutches, and got the information i needed. The clutch is a 10.4 inch, with a 1-1/8", 10 spline center. I also found it interesting that that clutch fits everything from early 1950's GM cars and trucks, to 2009 Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge vehicles. I never thought to look on their site, because i was always under the impression they were for racing and performance vehicles, and my Dakota is mainly a daily driver. I do want to note, their kits are a bit pricey, but, if that means i never have to change it again, the added expense negates the cost of replacing a parts store kit every couple years or so. Im not replacing it until in the spring, so i have plenty of time to decide as to whether im gonna pull the transmission to replace it or the engine.
  13. I have never even taken the cover off of one of these axles, so im not sure if it has clutches or not. I have, however, taken the cover off of a 1991 Dakota, and that has a sliding fork that is vacuum actuated, that when engaged locks the axles together, so maybe that is how they make them limited slip, except by hydraulic pressure in the 1992 to 1996 models. The pics i enclosed are of the 1991 axle and actuator.
  14. A family member recently bought a property, and in the barn are two cabs, at least one frame, and several other parts, to a truck that neither of us have ever seen. Since he bought the property through an estate auction, we cant find the previous owner to get any info on them, so i figured i would ask here, and see what i find out. I didnt get a chance yet to take any pics, but i did find a pic online, that shows the front of the two cabs. In the pic, it is the one on the left, and the one on the right. I know from my online search they are jeeps, and one site called them fcs, but i couldnt find out much more than that though.
  15. Moses, i was wondering if you might be able to find out what clutches were available factory, with part numbers, for my 1994 Dakota, with the 3.9 and ax15. The reason im looking, is because even though it had the clutch replaced when i did all the work, i have always had an issue with it not holding very well even on slight inclines, and then, recently, while trying to pull a truck out of a ditch, i smoked the clutch a bit, so, when i change it in the spring, im looking for something a bit better than stock, but all i seem to find through the dealer or the local parts stores, is just the one clutch set. What i cant seem to find is information such as clutch diameter, spline count, pressure plate specs, things of that nature. I figure, even if its starting with factory part numbers, maybe i can do some cross referencing, and see what other vehicles may have used the same clutch, and then maybe find a better clutch set by using those vehicles as a starting point. For example, i know some of the jeeps use the ax15, and the 4.0, which i know they make upgraded clutches for, so maybe i can use one of those clutches as an upgrade on my truck.
  16. Moses, i dont have the results from when the alignment was done, but, being that it was done at my father in laws, and he is extremely picky about everything, if anything was bent, he would have found it and either told me, or replaced it before he let me have the truck back. He is a stickler about not cutting corners anytime he does anything, especially when he thinks it could relate to a safety issue. And, before anyone asks how an alignment can become a safety issue, here is how he explained it to me years ago. A bad alignment can cause a tire to wear unevenly, which can cause that tire to fail, which can then lead to an accident. The only time i ever notice it happening, is usually out where we do logging at, which is all loose dirt, or mud, or gravel, and the only time i ever seem to need to use the 4 wheel drive. My big concern was that maybe something is binding somewhere, but, so far noone seems to think that is the case, as long as nothing is bent in the front steering. Both trucks do have limited slip in the front, at least according to the dealer, after having a vin trace done before i started any work on either one. I have a habit of going to the dealer and having them do an options list anytime i buy a vehicle, which they can usually get using the vin, so that i know ahead of time what my limits are as far as replacing parts and doing upgrades.
  17. Moses, i actually ended up going with a 5.9 swap on this truck, only because i picked up a running, but undriveable due to major frame issues, and no title, fairly low mileage full size Ram Van free. The guy who owned it, an older gentleman who is friends with my neighbor, bought a property in a tax auction that had a whole bunch of vehicles, tractors and farm equipment that the previous owner, who passed away, just left sitting all over, and he wanted the property cleaned up, so he made a deal with me to clean the place up, get rid of all the vehicles and junk, and said i could keep anything i wanted from the property. We put a battery in the van, and it started pretty easy, seemed to run good, didnt have any oil leaks i could find, didnt overheat, so, i figured why not do the swap. A few things i found in doing the swap though, is that there are some pieces you have to swap from the 5.2 to the 5.9, such as accessory brackets, alternator, A/C compressor, power steering pump and bracket, engine wiring, and ECM, as well as using the 5.9 torque converter, but, for the most part it wasnt any harder than just replacing the original 5.2. The exhaust manifolds bolted right up to the Dakotas exhaust, and the Dakotas bell housing was a direct bolt up as well. The 5.9 has been in the Dakota about 2 months now, and i have noticed i get only slightly worse gas mileage than the 1994 with the 3.9, but, i get much more power, especially when towing, so, i guess the swap was worth it, even though i was originally against that swap.
  18. This actually pertains to two different Dakotas, a 1994 and a 1995, that both seem to have the same odd issue when turning. When they are in 2 wheel drive, they seem to turn smoothly even at full left or right lock, but when in 4hi, and even worse, in 4lo, they both tend to act like something is binding when you turn the wheel more than 3/4's of a turn. Both have good wheel bearings, axles dont seem to be binding, all the front end components are either new, or in very good shape. The 1995 has had a recent wheel alignment, but the the 1994 hasnt, and i know the right front wheel is a bit out of alignment, but i dont think it is enough to cause this issue. Both trucks were recipients of a recent rebuild, the 1995 with a new frame, new wheel bearings, inner and outer tie rod ends, and pitman arm, hence it needing a major wheel alignment, and the 1994 had both inner tie rod ends, idler arm, left wheel bearing, right upper control arm, and both right ball joints replaced. I am at a loss, and so is the shop i had look at both trucks, as to why it would do this. Any ideas you guys have would be greatly appreciated.
  19. Moses, im not sure how much of a difference it makes in the dryer areas out west, and even some parts of the southern states, but, in the northeast, dielectric grease is pretty much a have to have item if you want to keep corrosion out of electrical connections. As you know, i work on a lot of imports, Subaru being the main one, and some of the electrical connections are underneath the rear, especially evap canisters, and if those connections, as well as almost every electrical connection there is, arent coated in dieelectric grease, after they are properly cleaned, they will rot and cause all kinds of issues. Another reason i have found to use it though, fits very well here. Quite a few people in my area have off road, lifted, purpose built mud trucks, and i have seen many times where things like exterior lights, horns, and even misfires can occur after running a truck in mud, simply because the connections werent greased well enough, or not at all.
  20. One option though, that might make it all a plug and play swap, would be to find a complete, running, but wrecked 4.7 truck, and swap engine, trans, wiring, transfer case, and driveshafts to your truck, but then that would negate having your transmission rebuilt.
  21. Mike, the bell housing pattern is the same, as far as I know. I will do a bit more research on it and get back to you asap, but, from what I do gather, the 3.7 is basically a 4.7 with 2 less cylinders, which is why most of the externals are interchangeable. The weak link In that swap is the transmission, but, since you are upgrading it, it should hold up very well behind the 4.7. The downside to that swap will be the PCM. It may have to be reflashed to control shifting and other functions for the transmission, since the 3.7 and 4.7 have different transmissions behind them stock. Wiring should also be direct interchange, although you will need the entire engine bay harness from the truck the 4.7 comes from, as well as the 4.7's PCM. Being that the only swap I have done of this type was a slightly older year than yours, a 2003, I don't want to give any wrong information here, so I will verify everything through a couple friends who have done the swap on a 2007, and I will get back to you asap with the needed info.
  22. Moses, i know the Buick in the link is a drag car, but, for many years there was a local guy who had a twin turbo buick GNX, that had 1,000 Hp, and over 1100 LB-FT of torque, on an all stock v-6, but a combination like that is very rare. Manufacturers rarely build cars that can be upgraded to that extent without major modifications. Now, on to the subject of super or turbocharging the 3.7l Chrysler engine. I did some research, and found that noone makes a piston that will hold up to that kind of power, and the stock pistons seem to have very little material between the dome, and the first ring. I attached a pic of one i found online, so you can see what it looks like.
  23. On a 3.7, 50 more horses might be a stretch, without internal engine work. With a matched freer exhaust, underdrive pulleys, and electric fan conversion, Royal Purple fluids, and an add on performance chip, all done to a friends 2005 3.7L Dakota, he had a verified 10HP increase, which, for the work, time and money involved, didnt seem worth it to either of us, so, he ultimately traded it in on a 2007 Ram, with a 5.7L Hemi, and he said not only does he get better MPG, but has more towing power, and a higher towing capacity, than his Dakota had. The trade off there though, is cost for certain types of maintenance is higher, for example, there are 16 spark plugs in the 5.7, and 6.1 Hemi engines, and they require at minimum double platinum plugs, so that makes just changing the plugs more than double the cost in your Dakota. The 3.7L, and the 4.7L, are both decent engines, but, just like any vehicle, maintenance, and how it is performed, and when, will make a huge difference in how reliable a vehicle is. The reason i bring this up, is i have heard a lot of stories of the 3.7, and even more stories of the 4.7 failing prematurely, but, when you dig deeper into those stories, a lot of them are guys who figure maintenance is something to be done when the vehicle has an issue, and not before, or, done very sporadically. A perfect example of this was a guy i knew who waited 20,000 miles between oil changes, and then wanted to sue chrysler because his jeep died with 62,000 miles. I want to addres the idea of supercharghing, turbocharging, or leaving it naturally aspirated in this way. I have never turbocharged or supercharged a truck of any kind, but, i build Subaru rally cars, and one thing that i know is that when you add that much extra air and power to a Subaru engine, if you dont lower the compression, it is a recipe for disaster, and the engine wont last very long. I will be honest and say that, although i build turbocharged Subaru cars, i am not sure of what the reasoning behind lowering the compression is, but, i do know the one time i put a turbo in a naturally aspirated Subaru, it blew the bottom end apart in less than 100 miles. Maybe Moses can chime in here with some more insight into that. My thought on that though, unless Moses, or some of the other guys here have some more insight into it, would be not to add a supercharger or turbocharger, unless you are certain that engine could hold up to the added power without damaging it. I know turbo kits are fairly expensive, and when you factor in the cost of a turbo or supercharger, only to have to replace the engine due to the added stress, in the long run, the cost of a 5.7, or even a 6.1 Hemi Ram might ultimately be cheaper. Plus, from knowing what the turbo in the Subarus i build cost, there isnt really enough of a fuel mileage gain that would make it worth the expense for a street use vehicle. With the turbo in the Subaru, which was over $2000 for the kit, we got somewhere around a 2 mile to the gallon gain. Im also honestly not sure if anyone makes a kit to rebuild the 3.7 in your Dakota so that you can run a supercharger or turbo either, sonce Chrysler didnt offer one on those trucks, but if there is a kit for that, a search online, or, even a needed parts list from Moses, would be the best place to start, if you do decide to go that route, although, knowing that some Chrysler parts are a bit more expensive than comparable Chevy or Ford parts, the total cost, including labor, may make it not worth the expense. A potential downside to adding any kind of power adder though, such as a supercharger, turbo, or even just a power chip, would be if the state the Dakota is registered in does yearly, or alternate year, emissions tests, because adding a turbo or supercharger might cause emissions issues. The only way to know for sure if it would, is to ask around and see if anyone has attempted this kind of swap, and see how they worked around it. On a side note, there are at least a couple guys here who both have the mid-2000 model year Rams, although both of theirs is diesel, they may have more insight into the fullsize trucks, as i tend to lean towards the Dakota, because it suits my needs better than a fullsize. One, as you already know, is Moses, who runs this site, and the other is Megatron, whose black 3500 Ram is showcased in the garage area on here, and, im sure if you ask around on the site, there are others who would be helpful with any questions you have on the Ram trucks. Ultimately, i would weigh the pros and cons of just fixing the torque converter issue, versus rebuilding the engine in the Dakota for a turbo, versus just buying a fullsize, and see which option makes the best sense for your budget, as well as what you are ultimately looking for.
  24. Sorry for the delay in responding. I have been away from my computer for awhile now. Before i begin getting into the swap, i want to say, i dont want to discourage you in any way, but this swap is a major undertaking, and, if this vehicle is registered in a state that does emissions testing, wouldnt be feasible, due to the PCM not being native to the dakota, and the VIN and mileage not matching. There are a couple places that i know will reflash the 2001-2004 PCM, but it is extremely pricey, and they let you know right up front that they are not responsible with any driveability issues with it once it is reflashed. If emissions arent an issue, then it is doable, but it very involved. You will, at the very least, need the entire wiring harness from the donor vehicle. And, by entire harness, i mean engine, interior, lighting, the whole thing, being that the dakota and ram wiring are not compatible with each other, which means you will have to do custom wiring for the dash and interior components, as well as mounting any switches the dakota doesnt have. You will also need a custom drivers side engine mount, because the dakota mount bolts up differently, and the passenger side only uses 3 of the 4 mount bolts. The drive shafts will also need to be custom made, due to differences in length and yoke and u-joint diameters. The biggest downfall though, is the HP difference. The Dakota's frame wasnt built to handle the kind of power the HEMI puts out, not even the smaller 5.7. The HEMI puts out, at a minimum, 100 HP more, and at least 100 LB-FT of torque more than the 4.7, which translates to the brakes ending up not being adequate for the swap. There are other things im sure im forgetting here, mainly because i have only seen one of these swaps done, and that was on a drag truck, and not a street vehicle, so things like exhaust and transmission mounts were custom made for that specific swap. All in all, it is a doable swap, but with the cost and time involved, as Moses said, it might be better to sell the v-6 Dakota, and buy a v-8 dakota or Ram, or, another option may be to find an independent shop, and see if they will do just a converter swap, or even a used transmission for less than the dealer quoted you. If you do decide you want to go ahead and tear apart your truck for the swap, and need any help, feel free to ask. If i dont have an immediate answer, i will get the correct answer to you within a day or two.
  25. Moses, i know that this would also fit the post i started for the 1995 Dakota, but i figured i would start this one to help keep the trucks straight. Anyway, i am pondering the idea of swapping the 3.9 in the 1994, for a 5.2. What i am looking for, is part numbers for the PCM, I want to keep the 5 speed in that truck, so what i would need is the PCM part numbers for a 1994 Dakota, 5.2, 5 speed, 4x4, as well as whether the ram, and even the fullsize van, or SUV's from 1992 to 1995 would have the same PCM, just so i know what vehicles to look for one from. I am also looking for fuel mileage numbers for the 3.9 versus the 5.2 (everything i find online never seems to match my vehicles in real world driving). I know that i will need the wiring harness for a 5 spd truck, that also matches the 5.2, but i am also wondering if the interior wiring will have to be replaced or not. After figuring out the prices to rebuild the engine out of my truck, i found a used 5.2 with a 6 month warranty for quite a bit less, so i figure if it is just basically a plug and play swap, and if i wont lose much in the way of fuel mileage, plus have a bit more towing capacity, why not do the swap, but, knowing my luck, something will pop up that i dont expect, and blow my budget.
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