Hey guys, I've had this truck sitting around here for a while but never really posted up on it. So I've decided to start it's own build thread. A little history on it is my buddies grandfather purchased it used in 2002 and we used to cruise it then is was sold to his dad, then him, then me, then him and back to his dad....and then it was hydrolocked one night when his dad was racing through a huge puddle and it sat for a year....Then I traded my red cav for the truck and I've had it for a little over a year now back in my hands.
Here are some old photos from over the years.
Then since I didn't want to just throw another 5.2 mag in there...I figured I'd do alittle searching on the dakota forums and found out about the Scat Dak build in Mopar muscle magazine. Then once I learned how easy a 5.9 swap is I figured bigger was better so I called a local yard and got a 5.9 mag out of a 96 Ram 1500. The same day I got the motor, I called into work sick......and began tearing the motor apart to see what I got myself into.
Popped the heads off and you could still see the cross hatching in the cylinders at what I was told 95k on the engine. I later discovered that the intake manifold had the common oil leak issue due to the the plentum plate being steel and the "kegger" mandifold being aluminum. When I dropped it off at the machine shop the cylinder heads were cracked as well. Ironically the 142k heads off the 5.2 were not cracked so they ended up going on the motor.
Then a little wad of cash later and about 2 weeks, I picked her back up and started putting everything together. Nothing crazy as far as engine build goes, 9.0:1 compression rebuilt heads and I had the valve spring seats machined down so I could run some SBC valve springs and save money over running the Mopar springs I'd need to handle the Comp Cam and 1.7 roller rockers. New pushrods and Mopar lifters, and Comp double roller timing chain. I reused the tri y headers and y pipe since you can't find these anymore, but come winter I'm hoping to have some cash to spend on a new exhaust setup.
Waiting engine bay
As of this past friday It's on the road again. I still have a few little things to do like fix an exhaust leak, and find new bolts to hold the hood on since they were missing when I picked the truck up....but I'll try and keep this updated as things happen. The Dakota does have a Detroit locker and 4.11 gears with 3 leafs removed out back and Cal-tracks. Up front it's on 2inch belltech drop spindles and I've got an entire box from prothane of every bushing made for the truck from steering rack, body, control arms, leaf springs bushings, swaybar...you name it. Eventually I plan on getting it controlled by a Megasquirt and throwing a small turbo on it for a tiny boost in power.....I'll keep you posted.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edited Sunday, May 29, 2011 12:36 PM
Very cool, my buddies dad has a 5.9 grand that he stroked into a 408 and put a procharger on, ran mid 12's last year. Those are cool motors!
I'll keep my eye on this.
I'm not looking to go that fast but we'll see where it goes....
Very cool. I have been looking into the 5.2 Magnum Dakotas, how was that engine when it ran?
Cavi Freak- these trucks are very easy to work on, but some parts are hard to find as alot of them are discontinued.
GT Matters- the main issue you will run into with the 5.2/5.9 magnums is the lowwer plentum plate is steel and the intake "kegger" is aluminum. Over time it mays seem like the motor is consuming oil and is on it's last leg but majority of the time it's the seal between these two parts is broken and you start burning oil and oil vapor from the lifter valley. Other than that the 5,2 that was in the truck had 142k on it and still ran stong before the rods got all bent up from being hydrolocked. check out dakota-durango.com or racemagnum.com for more info. I will warn you though that racemagnum has lots a smartasses worse than the org....
Worse than the org? Sweet mother of god. Hahahaha. Yeah I'll check it out. I'll be selling the ol' GT asap and then will be in the market so need to research now.
Quick update on the bastard black truck....... I fixed the exhaust, adjusted the bands on the trans, ordered a mopar performance pcm, trans cooler....and one night while cruising I stopped at a stop sign and it lost all power to everything but the cig outlet. Since I've been busy at work and the heat in Chicago was bad the past few weekends I didnt' feel like working on the turd. But now that it's getting cooler I'll start looking into my electrical issue.
Don't be such a sissy it has barley been hot!
I'll agree that it's not been that hot, but working in carwash boiler rooms with humidity, and heat, I just don't have the drive to do jack crap after work.
Damn. It's always something. Lol.
I haven't worked on mine because of the heat either and now that its been nice I want to enjoy it lol.
GT- my friends tell me I have the worst luck with electical issues.
Copter- Whats wrong with your toy?
Sounds like a painless wiring harness is needed.
jason- I doubt they got the mopar mag lovin but if I can't figure it out I'll look into it.
Nothing bad really, I bottomed out and messed up my exhaust cut out so I want to take it out until I get a new one so I stop scraping. But I've still been driving it here and there.
It's alive again....I woke up early and tore the harness apart, replaced the bad fusable links and it runs. So I'll be getting more work done and the updates will come as they happen.
Ordered matched fuel injectors for 5.9 magnum mopar performance computer.
Injectors and Mopar pcm are in truck runs better.
Awesome dude. I always loved these trucks for some reason.
Thanks, over winter I plan on posting up boddy mods and getting the truck ready for paint. I'm also tossing the idea of a shaker hood or hemi dart hood scoop.
Well I popped a freeze plug when a friend and I were finishing off the dry rotted rear tires friday before heading out to detroit.....so I have to pull the tri y headers and y pipe to get enough room to get in there. I also ordered new moog ball joints, freeze plug kit, and heater motor resistor, and a nuetral safety switch. Once I get around to the ball joints, prothane control arm bushings go in as well and por 15 goes on the upper/lowwer control arms.
sounds like my luck. trans and rear end went out in my silverado when i got on it going around a trucker blocking the road. luckly i was able to get the money and a 4l80e will be replacing the 4l60 junk.
I hate when @!#$ breaks, but at least your upgrading to stronger parts while your at it.
Yeah in the case of the trans. The rear end will be the same except the spider gears. Looks like this truck was a hauler. Would of never guessed that since its lowered 4/5. There was so many shavings on the magnet on the diff cover it was not funny. Just glad it was not completely my fault.