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98 Dakota Hemi Swap

119869 Views 203 Replies 47 Participants Last post by  69rrbruce
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Well I've been at it for a couple weeks now so I thought I would post some progress pics.
This is what I'm starting with: A 2WD 1998 RC V6 5 speed


The engine bay before the swap began:


The engine bay with the V6, wiring harness, brake booster, clutch master and the front clip removed:


Heres the 5.7 Hemi and Auto trans from a 2004 Ram. Note the steel angle frame jig I used to mock up the motor and trans mounts:


Heres the jig with motor mounts mocked up in the engine compartment.


Motor mounts tacked to frame:
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Brake booster was going to interfere with valve cover. I found a smaller diameter one from a Grand Cherokee and it still didn't fit. So the firewall was redrilled to move it 3/4" outboard. Thats the clutch master cylinder opening just below and to the left, it was filled as well. The opening in firewall duct taped shut is the opening for wiring harness:


Well that's it for now. I've got to do some body work so I can paint the firewall, inner fenderwells, rear of cab and door jambs. Then I can install the engine one last time.........Oh I forgot to tell you I'm changing to BLACK hopefully with some candy RED accents.
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Great work so far...
Is the Hemi/Tranny package significantly heavier that the V6/Tranny package
Gary
Nice! Are you still gonna be able to use your factory gauge cluster?
awesome post! cant wait to see a finished product
Great work so far...
Is the Hemi/Tranny package significantly heavier that the V6/Tranny package
Gary
I'm not sure how much heavier, that trans is a real PIG. I'm not worried about any added weight the Hemi will take care of itself.

Nice! Are you still gonna be able to use your factory gauge cluster?
Per YellowKota2k's recommendation I picked up a 2002 Dakota gauge cluster to replace the 98 cluster. Hope I can get it to work.

Thanks all for the kind words!

I'll try and kept you all updated. I know I took some pics of the oil pan and oil pickup mods. I'll have to check on those.

Since I'm in the rust belt I've been spending my time cutting it out and fabbing patch panels. I would like to have a talk with the Dodge engineers who thought it was a good idea to put some kind of spongy material between the body panels at the rear cab corners. It did a great job of holding in the moisture and starting the cancer.

Till next time!
Awesome build keep us updated.

The more and more people do this swap the more confident I get about doing mine. Only problem is my truck bagged which will be the hard part.
What causes you to have to switch gauge clusters? The new wiring harness not work w/ pre-02 clusters? I would like to reuse my 97 cluster if I were to do this swap.
What causes you to have to switch gauge clusters? The new wiring harness not work w/ pre-02 clusters? I would like to reuse my 97 cluster if I were to do this swap.
The bus system used in 2000 and older Dakotas is a 2-wire CCD bus; the bus system used in 2001+ Dakotas is a 1-wire PCI bus. If you ever want to have stock gauges again, then you will need to use a 2001+ gauge cluster.
Gotcha!
Very Nice!!!!! Post videos.
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Well I'm back after a long weekend up North. Below are the pictures of the mods to the oil pan and pickup required to clear the front crossmember.

Before I cut it up I filled the pan with 7 quarts of water and marked the water level. After filling in the front of the sump I found that I had lost half a quart. So I decided to bump out the rear corner of the pan where it had a full height recess. After doing this I found that I had more than the original 7 quart capacity.

Here is the oil pan with 1 3/8" taken out of the front of the sump and bumping out the rear corner of the pan. You can also see that I added 1 3/8" to the pickup.


Here it is all painted and ready to install.


I'm just about done replacing the rusted out bottom rear cab corners. I'll post pics of this repair work when I get the metal work done. I just ordered the epoxy primer and B/C today. Hope to get the firewall and rear of cab prepped for paint this weekend. Well maybe not as the Car Craft show is in town this weekend. Later......
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Lovin it! That is going to be 1 quick setup.

Have you done any mods to the HEMI?
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Are you going to be taking it to the track when you are done and have all the bugs worked out?
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Lovin it! That is going to be 1 quick setup.

Have you done any mods to the HEMI?
It should move out pretty well, Thanks! Not planning any mods to the Hemi until I get it up and running.

Are you going to be taking it to the track when you are done and have all the bugs worked out?
I might just do that, if it gets any traction at all, just to see what it does.

It's been a while, so I just wanted to let you know the build is progressing slowly as I'm in the block sanding stage on the cab body work. Maybe you guys don't even care about that?? Anyway it may be a while before I get back to the Hemi install portion of the build. Later!
Post pics of the body Work!!! Dont matter to me Im hoping to do a Hemi swap at some point hopefully the next couple of years
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