Cummins 4BT & Diesel Conversions Forums banner

1 - 20 of 34 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Ok guys, I have my 2003 dodge dakota ext cab, mostly stock, (cab clearance lights, cold air intake, 3" suspension lift, cat back performance exhaust, and on board air to run my air horns) 4.7 v8 4x4 backed by a nv3500. So here's my plan, I'm going to buy a second frame to mod, and here's what I have planned;

Front SAS - thinking about a Dana 60 to match my 70

Rear Dually Swap - I have a Dana 70 out of a 93 Cummins 4x4

Mild lift kit (6")

Box the frame

4bt and nv4500 swap - was also contemplating a nv5600 (opinions and thoughts would be appreciated)

Front "Ranch Hand" style replacement bumper (will custom build to fit)

Match the front bumper with a custom flatbed

Built in headache rack

3" exhaust stacks

Fifth wheel hitch for a custom car trailer to haul my 56' ford around

Once again, any thoughts/opinions are greatly welcome as I am not well versed in diesel mechanics, I'm learning slowly, but I have a ways to go yet. I will keep this thread updated as I work through my frame build and modifications, and I will be taking plenty of pictures to document my progress as I go.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
I decided while I search for a second frame, I'm going to show off some of the things I've already done to my truck, so here's a picture of the dash and a-pillar pod (it's a 3 gauge pod, I only have one gauge right now) one of the front light up with the clearance lights, and one of the interior with the blacked out headliner and blue interior lights
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Also the quick list of things I'm still looking for, message me if you have or know someone who does have any of this stuff.

Fifth wheel trailer (camper or horse)(or any other larger trailer that's fifth wheel

P7100 4BT & NV4500

Lift pump

A matched Dana 60 front (93 Power Ram 350 4x4 dually)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,974 Posts
Have you researched all it will take to put the 93 axle in? Or did you just pick it because you had a 93 rear axle?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Have you researched all it will take to put the 93 axle in? Or did you just pick it because you had a 93 rear axle?
There are a few reasons that I was planning to use that axle. First, that year front is leaf sprung, so I won't have to build spring buckets into the frame, just shackle mounts. Second, it will match the load capacity of the rear as they were spec'd to do. Third, the bolt pattern will be the same as the rear. Fourth, the axle is already set up for the correct dually wheels and backspacing. And finally, from what I have been able to determine, both axles will be easy to upgrade if I ever want to use and abuse them for stupid things. If any of that makes no sense to you, or you think there might be a better option, please let me know
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,974 Posts
There are a few reasons that I was planning to use that axle. First, that year front is leaf sprung, so I won't have to build spring buckets into the frame, just shackle mounts. Second, it will match the load capacity of the rear as they were spec'd to do. Third, the bolt pattern will be the same as the rear. Fourth, the axle is already set up for the correct dually wheels and backspacing. And finally, from what I have been able to determine, both axles will be easy to upgrade if I ever want to use and abuse them for stupid things. If any of that makes no sense to you, or you think there might be a better option, please let me know
What transfer case are you planning on using?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
What transfer case are you planning on using?
The plan was to use a np241ld or np241hd, in conjunction with the Dana 60 front, drivers drop t-case with drivers side pumpkin. But I still have more research to do on that front, I kind of like the electronic shift t-case setup I have now, so I might look into the newer Rams to see if I can find one that will hold up to the 4BT a little better than my stock nv233
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I've been thinking about how to maintain a "like stock" ride and still have some towing capacity, and I believe that I will be able to achieve this with some stiffer front leafs/add a leafs, and some suspension air bags in the rear.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,974 Posts
The plan was to use a np241ld or np241hd, in conjunction with the Dana 60 front, drivers drop t-case with drivers side pumpkin. But I still have more research to do on that front, I kind of like the electronic shift t-case setup I have now, so I might look into the newer Rams to see if I can find one that will hold up to the 4BT a little better than my stock nv233
See this is where your research is flawed already. All leaf sprung dodge's have passenger side drop t-cases and passenger side front pumpkins. Now, don't take this wrong but I think your silly to invest all this time and money into your dakota to turn it into a dually dakota capable of towing a large trailer. Just because you have a set of 1 ton diffs doesn't mean you can pull one ton loads. Your frame is only able to withstand so much stress. You will be money ahead to just buy a 94-98 p-pumped 6bt 3/4 ton or 1 ton Dodge Ram truck for towing and converting your Dakota to a 4BT with the original drivetrain and use it as an economical commuter truck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
644 Posts
See this is where your research is flawed already. All leaf sprung dodge's have passenger side drop t-cases and passenger side front pumpkins. Now, don't take this wrong but I think your silly to invest all this time and money into your dakota to turn it into a dually dakota capable of towing a large trailer. Just because you have a set of 1 ton diffs doesn't mean you can pull one ton loads. Your frame is only able to withstand so much stress. You will be money ahead to just buy a 94-98 p-pumped 6bt 3/4 ton or 1 ton Dodge Ram truck for towing and converting your Dakota to a 4BT with the original drivetrain and use it as an economical commuter truck.
^^^^^^This is excellent advise.:beer:


Good luck on your project no matter what you decide.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
,
See this is where your research is flawed already. All leaf sprung dodge's have passenger side drop t-cases and passenger side front pumpkins. Now, don't take this wrong but I think your silly to invest all this time and money into your dakota to turn it into a dually dakota capable of towing a large trailer. Just because you have a set of 1 ton diffs doesn't mean you can pull one ton loads. Your frame is only able to withstand so much stress. You will be money ahead to just buy a 94-98 p-pumped 6bt 3/4 ton or 1 ton Dodge Ram truck for towing and converting your Dakota to a 4BT with the original drivetrain and use it as an economical commuter truck.
I know I might have flaws in my research, but I never said I was going to use a 241 out of a dodge to get the drivers drop. 95-98 Chevy trucks had np241s with drivers side drops and I've never seen the front axle out of the truck my Dana 70 came out of, it was a junkyard find and the front axle was gone. As for hauling a "large trailer" I'm not looking to haul a three up wedge car trailer, im trying to find a small 5th wheel that I can strip down and use to move my show truck on long trips. (3+ hours on the highway or more, probably 2 or 3 times a year to Carlisle PA for the big car shows) I in no way intend to overtax my frame, but I will box it to help with strengthining it. I just can't justify buying a whole other truck and letting it sit and rust, and maybe drive it 3 times a year when I really need it. Maybe I'll find a high pinion Dana 60 out of a ford truck and use that. I could go SRW if I really wanted to, but I'm basically building this truck as a show off piece, just to prove that I can, if the dually rear becomes an issue down the road or I decide I don't need it I can always pick up another axle and just swap it in, all the modification for the mounting takes place on the axle itself anyways. As it is now, all I need to do is move the spring perches about an inch closer to the pumpkin on each side and I could put the dually right in. My main concern with using the original drive axles is that I want to build the 4bt to handle a little more power, definitely not to the extreme of your 94, but enough for it to be noticeable when I hit the skinny pedal.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
644 Posts
Not at all, but I think there are a lot better qualified guys on this forum to give you information than me. I will help if I can and let you know if I can't or am unsure of my answer. I would be able to give you some links to threads that helped me along the way. I cheated a lot by paying other people to make or figure out things that I couldn't or didn't want to be bothered with. Absolutely the reason I have way too much money in my truck. There are guys here that can give you the info to help keep costs down a lot better than me.
Al
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Well the main question I have is, are you happy with the NV4500 or would you have rather swapped in a 6 speed like a NV5600 or a Mercedes G56? My main concern with this swap is that I do a lot of highway driving and I don't want to be running high revs for a prolonged period like when we take my dads 6.5 Detroit equipped chevy 1 ton.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
644 Posts
Yes, the nv4500 works fine for me but, I have a gear venders that gives me 7 usable forward gears. It was ok without it, but then again I live in So. FL, and going over bridges is our mountains. LOL. I did however buy the drivetrain in a Durango from a guy that lived in NH and he drove it around for 3 years up there and managed. It didn't have the GV in it then. The nv4500 has quite a spread between I think it's 3rd and 4th that prolly wouldn't be very good towing a heavy load in the mountains. The gear vender straightened that out for me though. I have towed an 8500 lb Avion trailer 300 miles with it one way with no problems, but I didn't feel comfortable that I could do this on a regular basis.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Yes, the nv4500 works fine for me but, I have a gear venders that gives me 7 usable forward gears. It was ok without it, but then again I live in So. FL, and going over bridges is our mountains. LOL. I did however buy the drivetrain in a Durango from a guy that lived in NH and he drove it around for 3 years up there and managed. It didn't have the GV in it then. The nv4500 has quite a spread between I think it's 3rd and 4th that prolly wouldn't be very good towing a heavy load in the mountains. The gear vender straightened that out for me though. I have towed an 8500 lb Avion trailer 300 miles with it one way with no problems, but I didn't feel comfortable that I could do this on a regular basis.
Do you run your stock axles and if so how is your figment around the front crossmember and front axle. Also, what did you use for engine mounts, and what are you running as far as exhaust diameter/routing?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
644 Posts
All of the fitment and fab work was figured out by the guy I bought the Durango from. The only thing I had to do was cut the frame side mounts off the Durango and weld them in the same spot on the Dak frame.
This is my build thread.

http://www.4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?20548-4bt-in-a-01-Dakota-the-easy-hard-way..

And this is the build thread from the guy that build the Durango.
http://www.4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?1910-4bt-Durango-2-(or-more-)


Engine side mounts were stock bread van. Frame side were simple L shaped with gussets as seen in the second link.
I went to 2wheel drive because I don't think the stock front axel would last a day off road and there is no snow where I live. The guy I bought the Durango from lived in what I'd call some pretty untamed territory. When I flew up to get the Durango It took 3 hours of mountain driving to get to his place. Spring time and still 6' snow drifts in places. Roads were so bad I thought I was on one of those Alaska reality shows. I tell you this because I want you to know that how he mounted the front IFS system worked good. He used 4 wheel hi all of the time with no problems for 3 years. The Rango body was rusted so bad it wouldn't pass his state inspections any more and was not worth repairing.
If your 2003 front is set up the same as the 2001 you could follow his method, or if you PM me I might be willing to sell all of the mounts, bolts, Oil pan, and pick up tube for a fair price.
Al
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ncurrw1

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
.
All of the fitment and fab work was figured out by the guy I bought the Durango from. The only thing I had to do was cut the frame side mounts off the Durango and weld them in the same spot on the Dak frame.
This is my build thread.

http://www.4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?20548-4bt-in-a-01-Dakota-the-easy-hard-way..

And this is the build thread from the guy that build the Durango.
http://www.4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?1910-4bt-Durango-2-(or-more-)


Engine side mounts were stock bread van. Frame side were simple L shaped with gussets as seen in the second link.
I went to 2wheel drive because I don't think the stock front axel would last a day off road and there is no snow where I live. The guy I bought the Durango from lived in what I'd call some pretty untamed territory. When I flew up to get the Durango It took 3 hours of mountain driving to get to his place. Spring time and still 6' snow drifts in places. Roads were so bad I thought I was on one of those Alaska reality shows. I tell you this because I want you to know that how he mounted the front IFS system worked good. He used 4 wheel hi all of the time with no problems for 3 years. The Rango body was rusted so bad it wouldn't pass his state inspections any more and was not worth repairing.
If your 2003 front is set up the same as the 2001 you could follow his method, or if you PM me I might be willing to sell all of the mounts, bolts, Oil pan, and pick up tube for a fair price.
Al
Thanks Al, but I think I'll be better off with a full stock pickup and pan since I'm planning on the front SAS and lift kit
 
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Top