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Author Topic: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap **4/14 Body work**  (Read 16568 times)

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Offline ram-it

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78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap **4/14 Body work**
« on: August 29, 2011, 10:36:49 PM »
Hey guys

I thought i would start a build thread on my progress so far with my swap. I'm not sure if this is the best place for it so if a mod wants to move it, just let me know where its gone.

Feel free to ask plenty of questions and i'll answer what i can.

The project truck is a 78 Ramcharger. The man i bought it from was the second owner and had it since 1980 but it has essentially sat in field not running for the past decade slowly rotting away until i saved it. It had a 400BB/727/np203. The donor is a 91 Cummins W250 5pd/np205/dana 60/dana70 that was rode hard and put away wet. I've swapped all of the running gear from the diesel into the ramcharger including the diffs. The only thing i didn't swap was the wiring harness, as i'll just be hacking the original harness to make it work with the diesel.

Here's the Ramcharger. Sorry i had already started gutting it before i thought to take any photos. Btw if you want to see or need anything specific feel free to make a photo request.




And here is the donor truck.



And here is my old Ramcharger that will be getting retired once the 78 is built. Why not do the swap on my perfectly fine 87? I wanted a convertable top of course! I thought i would share these photos because i know a lot of guys are looking around trying to find pics of cut fenders. Also its sitting on 31's in the pics but has since been wearing 33's, so if you want pics of it running 33's let me know.






« Last Edit: April 14, 2013, 04:47:10 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2011, 10:48:56 PM »
Welcome to the KNUTTHOUSE!  {wave}

I for sure can't argue the pop top CTD in any way. I REALLY need to get one of mine back on the road. I miss them....  ;D

Nice save on the 78 for sure.  {cool}
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
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Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2011, 10:56:32 PM »
So first thing i did was gut the interior and pull off the front end. If anyone has a nice red glove box door let me know. The vinyl on mine has a big crack right on the top of it even though its hard to tell in the photo.





As you can see the floor is a bit rusty. I'll be doing all the body work at the end when the engine is in and running. I haven't yet decided if i'm going to put a patch in the floor or just coat it with some thick rust proofing paint and call it a day.



Here it is with the old 400



Here is an example of some of the body work i'll end up having to repair further on down the road. I'll save the rest of the body rot pics for later in the build when i actually start repairing it.

« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 11:36:41 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2011, 11:01:51 PM »
That's gravy body work.

A suggestion for you is to use the donor truck bedside bottoms as patches.  ;)

I have 3 pairs of them stashed away waiting for me to get to my pop tops.

There is a putty you can buy to repair the glovebox door. You cut/grind the crack flat and fill it with the putty then paint it. I can't remember what it's called anymore. I saw it on PowerBlock and it worked really great. 
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ToxicDoc

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2011, 11:24:43 PM »
If it hasn't been done already, bypass the ammeter.
'85 W150 SB, 408 stroker, Magnum manifolds, Performer RPM, 670 Truck Avenger, HEI ignition, Auburn LSD 9.25 and '82 D44 (non-CAD) with 3.55/3.54,  NV4500/NP241

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2011, 11:29:49 PM »
As they say, out with the old! The reason the rims are on the truck was the original hoist i was renting (which i actually broke (who knew a bb w/ tranny and t-case would be too heavy) wasn't able to lift the engine/tranny/t-case high enough to clear the frame, so we tossed the old rims on it, set it down on the ground for that last couple inches of clearance, and yanked it all out. If anyone wants the old rims let me know otherwise they are going to scrap, i'm guessing whatever oddball bolt pattern they are aren't exactly common. Found that out when i tried putting the rims from the 87 on the 78 back before i had decided on the cummins swap.



Its actually kind of funny. The reason i started the diesel swap in the first place was because of those oddball sized rims since i didn't want to have a weird bolt pattern on the truck if i were ever to damage one of them and needed a replacement down the road. So i was looking in the local classifieds and saw an ad for a dana 60/70 combo w/ 4.10's for 1500 bucks. I phoned the guy and i was trying to talk him down to a more reasonable price of 750 when he offered to sell the whole truck. Turns out it was a Cummins and the old noggin got the crazy notion that 4x the fuel mileage and equivalent or better HP than the 400 BB (even thought it was cam'd and had roller rockers) might not be such a bad idea. Walked away with the whole truck for 1500. Saweeet! Oh btw i paid 1000 for the 78.

So at this point the motor was out and we started looking at what we needed to do to prep the 78 for the Cummins. First was the master cylinder for the 5 speed. It comes through the firewall exactly where the old wiring harness comes through. There is also a small bracket under the dash that needed to be drilled and bolted in for it to fasten to. The holes needed to be drilled out under there are a bit of a bitch since there isn't very much room to get a drill in there. Also the throttle cable comes through in a different spot than the gas jobbie. So i cut the old harness hole out of the firewall, moved the hole over a few inches, filled in the old hole with a peice of scrap steel and used a hole saw to cut a new hole for the master cylinder to fit through. iirc it took about 4 hours total. I also welded up all the old unused holes in the firewall, drilled a new hole for the throttle cable and patched the holes in the floor of the interior where the original gas pedal attached to those pivot things, since the diesel pedal doesn't need them.

Here you can see where the old wireing harness sits, as well as where the old throttle cable came through.




Here it is all patched up with a coat of tremclad primer. The two small holes drilled out diagonally from each other underneath the new throttle cable hole are for the new diesel pedal, since it mounts to the firewall differently than the old gas pedal.



Here is a shot from the inside. If you look at the bottom right of the photo where that sun spot is on the floor you can just make out some grey primer. That is where those pedal pivot things where screwed into the floor, and i welded the holes up.




« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 12:09:55 AM by ram-it »

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2011, 11:36:31 PM »
Here is the bracket i was refering to under the dash that is used to fasten the master cylinder to. As you can see the old wiring harness hole could not be in a worse spot. The bracket is sitting crooked because i hadn't tightened it up yet, i only had it in loosely to see how ****ed i was.


Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2011, 11:42:48 PM »
If anyone wants the old rims let me know otherwise they are going to scrap, i'm guessing whatever oddball bolt pattern they are aren't exactly common.

Those wheels are a 5 on 4.5 bolt pattern the same as most mopar cars from the mid 70's to the late 80's.

Are those wheels chrome oval slots? Are they are in good shape? They are the same wheels that came on the little red express. DON'T scrap them.

If you weren't so far away I'd love to have them if they are in good shape.  :-\
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2011, 11:57:01 PM »
Here are a few other notes of changes before the swap.

The fuel line is on the other side in the diesel, so it was pulled from the donor truck and installed on the left frame rail, and the original gas lines were tossed out. I haven't yet figured out what i'm doing for the gas tank. The 78 has a steel tank, the 87 has a plastic tank but i'm not sure if either one will fit the sending unit out of the diesel tank. The 87 might maybe but its not fuel injected so i think the 'cap' on the top of it is different from the diesels. I'll get to that later. Also the brake proportioning valve thing that is on the inside frame rail below the brake booster was also swapped from the diesel since i will be using the diesels diffs. I also swapped the power steering pump, brake booster, and wiper motor over. The brake booster off the diesel is narrower than the gas one, so you pretty much have to swap it for clearance, as well as the wiper motor since the 78 wiper motor would probably not clear the engine. If you had an auto originally like i did, you will have to get a new column or modify your existing since the clutch pedal will hit the wiring connector on the side of it. There is probably more, but i'll get to that later when i remember.

So while inspecting the truck i noticed it had a small crack in the frame at the front where one of the rivets holds the front crossmember it. A case of beer later, and a welder buddy from work came over and welded it up as well as reinforced a few other spots for me. I figured if there was going to be any welding needing to be done to the frame i better get a professional over to do it. Mig welding some body work is a completely different ball game than stick welding a frame.

Here is the crack i noticed. I forgot to take a pic before it was welded.



This rivit was actually welded up by the previous owner at one point, but the weld was hideous, so i had my welder clean it up with a die grinder and re weld it.



Same thing here. Grind out the old, in with the new.

« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 12:12:59 AM by ram-it »

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2011, 12:12:34 AM »
mopar65pa - Ya the plan was to use as much of the diesels sheetmetal as possible to fix up and patch the 78's body when the time comes. Also i'm on the road right now hence the free time to finally start this post, but when i get back home i'll take a clearer photo of those rims and maybe someone can ID them. And if i can't find a new glovie, i'll keep in mind the ole patch job route.



So at this point I've done pretty much everything i need to to prep the frame and body for the motor (or at least what i can remember for this post), except of course for a bit of paint. For the interior i'm actually going to coat the floor with a bedliner called Monstaliner. I read a bunch of good reviews on it, and tons of bad reviews for their competitors, so i figured what the hell i would give them a try. Anyways they originally sell a product called chassis saver before they got into the bedliner business so i figured what the hell i would give chassis saver a try as well. One thing i will say about the chassis saver is as long as the surface is roughed up it sticks. When i sprayed i got it alll over my hands and arms from crawling underneath the truck and it was stuck on my skin for 2-3 weeks after the fact. So if it sticks half as well to this rusty old truck i'll be a happy man.

Here are a couple before shots.












Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2011, 12:40:03 AM »
ToxicDoc -  Ya i will be. Have to rewire the charging system anyways. I'll also be going to aftermarket for all of my gauges so i'll be running just a volt meter. And if anyone wants the old gauges let me know, i'll get a pic up of them eventually for those interested.



And a whole bunch of after shots. BTW uploading pics from this hotels wireless is painful to say the least.








Isn't it amazing what $50 worth of paint does for an old truck?

The diffs in the photo's are the dana 60/70 from the diesel. We installed the diffs before putting in the motor. Rear first, then the front. One thing to note is the spring bolt that goes through the center of the spring pack has a smaller head on it than a 3/4 or 1 ton truck. We found out when we pulled the front diff that the 3.5 lift springs on the diesel were actually for a half ton and the end of one of the bolts was actually sheered off probably from the play. I'm going to continue using the 1/2 ton springs for now but if it becomes an issue i'll just build up the end of the bolt with some weld so it fit snugger into the hole in the spring perch.

Oh and don't buy a hvlp gun to spray your underbody. I learn that the hard way. You end up getting more on yourself than on the truck from trying to get the gun into all the tight nooks and crannies. We eventually had a brain storm and grabbed this little guy out of the shop. Its actually a varsol gun for cleaning parts and what have you, but it works just as well for spraying paint. I just took a small plastic container (one of those large yogurt containers), punched a whole in the lid, stuck the hose in, and filled it with paint. Worked awesome.


Offline jungle

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2011, 03:34:56 AM »
Looks a LOT better.
Jim
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Offline ToxicDoc

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2011, 05:34:43 AM »
Also, while everything is apart:

http://www.dodgeconnection.com/catalog/item/2901766/4541374.htm

and a Borgeson shaft.
'85 W150 SB, 408 stroker, Magnum manifolds, Performer RPM, 670 Truck Avenger, HEI ignition, Auburn LSD 9.25 and '82 D44 (non-CAD) with 3.55/3.54,  NV4500/NP241

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2011, 07:57:45 AM »
Good call on the brace, i will order one tonight when i get off work. Borgeson shaft is in the mail as well as some SDX injectors. Besides those showing up as far as the mechanical goes i just need to shorten the rear drive shaft, figure out the fuel tank (is there a pump in a diesel tank and is it necessary? I see there is a pump on the side of the engine) and do the wiring to get it running and then it can be driven into the shop to start the bodywork. The engine swap was done in the driveway because the shop is too small for both trucks to fit inside never mind pulling engines etc. I got a few more pics of the progress so far but it was getting late last night so after work ill post them and get you all mostly updated to its current state.

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2011, 10:34:47 AM »
Wow that's a lot of progress. Yes I know all about loading pics in on a hotel wifi lol........  ;D

Yep $50 worth of paint makes things look great.  {cool}
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
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Offline ToxicDoc

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #15 on: August 30, 2011, 07:42:37 PM »
Besides those showing up as far as the mechanical goes i just need to shorten the rear drive shaft, figure out the fuel tank (is there a pump in a diesel tank and is it necessary? I see there is a pump on the side of the engine)

In the first gen 12V engine, it used only that pump on the engine.  A lot of people have upgraded to an electrical pump near the rear (FASS, Airdog, etc).  I also remember reading about upgrading to one of the piston-type mechanical pumps (instead of the stock diaphragm type) from a later model 4BT (that wasn't excessive in gph rating) if I recall correctly.
'85 W150 SB, 408 stroker, Magnum manifolds, Performer RPM, 670 Truck Avenger, HEI ignition, Auburn LSD 9.25 and '82 D44 (non-CAD) with 3.55/3.54,  NV4500/NP241

Offline ToxicDoc

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« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 07:52:28 PM by ToxicDoc »
'85 W150 SB, 408 stroker, Magnum manifolds, Performer RPM, 670 Truck Avenger, HEI ignition, Auburn LSD 9.25 and '82 D44 (non-CAD) with 3.55/3.54,  NV4500/NP241

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #17 on: August 30, 2011, 08:00:32 PM »
In the first gen 12V engine, it used only that pump on the engine.  A lot of people have upgraded to an electrical pump near the rear (FASS, Airdog, etc).  I also remember reading about upgrading to one of the piston-type mechanical pumps (instead of the stock diaphragm type) from a later model 4BT (that wasn't excessive in gph rating) if I recall correctly.

I have a diesel tank and an elec pump RC tank out back. I'll take a look tomorrow and see if the senders swap.  ;)
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #18 on: August 30, 2011, 09:11:38 PM »
Hey thanks for the help guys!

So one thing i forgot to mention with the undercoating was as far as prep goes i bought myself a 2900 psi gas powered pressure washer and went to town on it. I forgot to take pictures of the underside after pressure washing so you'll just have to take my word for it. You would be amazed at how much grime is under there once you clean off a patch. Prepare to get very very wet. I wore rain gear when i was under there and still got soaked. Also watch your eyes. I started out wearing safety glasses but once they were coated in water i couldn't see 2 inches in front of my face, the trade off for my sight was almost losing it multiple times. There were a ton of high speed projectiles that nearly took my eyes out so be very careful if your going to do it. I don't really have a suggestion on how to do it safer so your forwarned.

If you don't want to shell out $400 on a pressure washer there are usually tool outfits that will rent you all sorts of things. That's where i got the first hoist from until i broke it. I ended up having to buy my own hoist (Another $400) because they said they weren't going to fix theirs any time soon. Also both of their pressure washers were booked for 2 months straight and i didn't want to sit half the summer waiting on one. So if a rental shop with available tools is near you, you can cut your costs down quite a bit.

So the last step before installing the motor was to put in the front diff. I already went over the spring problem, but i forgot to mention anything about the brake line. The flexible brake line that goes from the engine crossmember down to the diff was too short. Well it wasn't really too short, it was piano string tight and any slight bump probably would rip it off, plus it was cracked and swelling in one spot. We took a measurement of what we needed and ordered one from the local parts jobber. It turns out we measured the length of the rubber hose not including the fittings on the end and the brake line we recieved was measured from end to end. It was only 1" longer than our original line. Doh! So we were standing around complaining about how we were going to have to wait another 2 weeks on another brake line since everything takes 2-6 weeks if not more in a small northern canadian town when we had an idea. Turns out the rear brake line off the 78's original diff which was still in good shape (forgot to mention the 78 has only 135k original kilometres on it) fits the front. In fact now the front brake line is almost too long.

So with all the prep work done, minor mods, paint, diffs, fuel and brake lines sorted it was time to put in the engine.



So since i broke the old hoist i had to buy my very own. Rather than break it as well, we pulled the tranny and t-case off of the engine and pulled the engine on its own. It all came out pretty easy. It was pretty filthy so i pulled out my new toy, set the motor down on 3 old tires, and spent an hour or two pressure washing the shit out of it. I've gotten to the point where damn near everything on the truck is going to have been pressured washed.



Going in was a pain. We left the engine mounts and rubber pads attached to the engine and in hindsight i think the better option would be to install the rubber pads to the crossmember, and then attach the mounts once you have wiggled the motor in place. Its a fairly tight fit so it took us quite a bit of screwing around to get it to sit in the frame. Once in everything was fine.



And here she is in her new home.




Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #19 on: August 30, 2011, 09:56:58 PM »
Looking good!

I bought China made 2 1/2 ton hoist 6 years ago for $130

I may bought a China made 2 1/2 ton for $130 6 years ago and pulled my CTD and trans out of my truck with it fully extended. Man that rental most have been shot!  :o

I may be dropping a CTD in my crew cab next year so the mount thing is good to know.  {cool}
« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 09:59:01 PM by mopar65pa »
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #20 on: August 30, 2011, 11:02:02 PM »
Man i wish i could find tools/parts in Canada for that cheap. The cheapest i found the hoist and leveler was from Canadian Tire (big chain store in canada that sells tools/parts/household crap) and it was 300 for both plus tax when they were on sale. I actually bought the CT leveler but it was a complete POS and i returned it. The hoist and leveler you see in the photo i got from the parts jobber that i deal with. It also was on sale and ended up being a little over 400 for both of them but seems to be a better rig than the CT one. For example its hard to see in the photo but this one has a roller on the leveler so it is really easy to adjust the engine, the CT one didn't have a roller built in so when 800lbs was hanging off of it, it was really hard to adjust anything. You actually had to set the engine down, adjust the leveler, relift the engine and hope that it was at the right angle for you. I think i would have lost my mind trying to put the diesel back in with the CT one with all the adjusting and wiggling we had to do with the mounts still on the engine. So if anyone is out there looking to buy an engine leveler for their hoist, make sure it has a roller on it to make adjustments easier while in the air.

Part of the problem with putting the engine in with the mounts and rubbers still on is there isn't really enough height in between the body and the engine to line it all up. You can see from the photo that after its all sitting in place your lucky to have an inch of clearance at the back when its all said and done. If your truck were to have a small body lift though then i imagine it would be a lot easier, and i wouldn't bother taking the mounts off. Though now that i think about it, if you were to take the bellhousing off the back of the engine that might make it a lot easier to set in. You would just have to decide on which is more work, taking off the mounts or taking off the bell housing and having to put the clutch back in under the truck rather than out on the ground.

We actually had the bellhousing off while the motor was out so we could inspect the clutch life. After inspection we decided we might as well order a new clutch since there wasn't a tremendous amount of life on it. When i went to the jobbers in town and asked to order one they told me they had a cheap one for $600 and a more expensive one for $1200. I of course ordered the cheap one. Turns out the cheap one was smaller than the one originally on my truck and the correctly sized one for my truck was of course the $1200 unit. So after waiting the usually 2 weeks for the clutch to arrive I ended up saying **** that, spent $80 on getting it resurfaced and put the old one back on. If i'm going to spend 1200 on a clutch i'm going to be damn sure i got ever last mile out of the old one before i replace it. Plus if i'm going to spend $1200 on a clutch i might as well spend the extra $1500 and swap in a 6 speed. But that can wait.

Oh and its not like i snapped the arm off the rental hoist or anything. It was part of the piston crank lever bracket deally that broke. It looked like it wasn't the first time it had happened either, i think that's why they weren't in any rush to fix it again. I had the feeling they were going to retire it. It was actually a fairly stout unit and took two men and an elephant to lift it out of the back of the truck.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 11:26:32 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #21 on: August 30, 2011, 11:42:45 PM »
It was actually a fairly stout unit and took two men and an elephant to lift it out of the back of the truck.

I know that feeling for sure. LOL......... ;D  Mine folds too so I have taken it places in the back of me truck. Just make sure you are pushing really hard when you tilt it into the truck or it's falling flat on the ground or your feet!  {yes}
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
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Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #22 on: August 30, 2011, 11:50:33 PM »
Couple more things that came to mind before i log for the night. Oh and don't worry i got some more pics to post up for tomorrow.

If you are doing your swap in your driveway like i did i have a little advice for you. One, remove the tranny and t-case from the engine before you pull it. If your not on smooth concrete and on rough pavement like me, your hoist is NOT going to want to roll. It is going to take two men and a lot of grunting to get it to move. Even without the tranny and t-case its still a bitch to roll around. Two, get something to soak up the oil. In the last photo of the truck if you look under the engine on the pavement you can just barely see what looks like a rough patch. That is where the oil soaked into the driveway so bad that it made it extremely soft and when the weight of the cummins was on the hoist one of the wheels literally sank into the ground. So if you don't want to destroy your driveway like i did, get something to soak it up. I initially had a small bag of that kitty litter type stuff (can't remember its name), and quickly ran out. I got impatient/lazy and didn't bother getting more when i was in the zone working and now paid the price with a destroyed driveway. Plus now my driveway looks like ass with all the oil and grease stains on it.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2011, 11:54:11 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #23 on: August 31, 2011, 12:27:45 AM »
 ;) Thanks but I have a garage.

here's 2 shots for you.  ;D
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #24 on: August 31, 2011, 08:55:12 PM »
ToxicDoc - Thx for the heads up on the pump. I briefly skimmed over the links and it doesn't sound too hard to accomplish. The hardest part will be getting the parts since my local suppliers screw up even the simple orders i give them never mind oddball requests where i can't tell them the year/make/model to punch into their computer. And that dodgeconnection website is the shit. I went to it to order that bracket and pretty soon i had over $1000 in my cart, so i think i'll hold off ordering anything from there until i know exactly what i need.

mopar65pa -  Nice! Now that the easy part is done its time for the hard part, but for some reason i think your going to have a hard time sandwiching that into a mercedes. You should post a pic of the truck you said it was going in.


Well now we had the motor stuffed into the ole rust wagon. Time to focus on the tranny and t-case. When we bought the donor the owner told us he cooked the tranny. So before we pulled everything out and had the motor running we tested it to see what was wrong with it. The clutch worked fine but as soon as you tried to drive away it would stall. It also didn't feel like it was going in and out of gear properly. The t-case was a similar story, it didn't want to shift into neutral. Sure enough like we figured they both had a broken shift fork. The best guess we have is that he got it stuck in the mud from all the dirt on top of everything and was rocking it back and forth under full throttle, tried to slam it from 1st into reverse and broke both the forks since it turned out to be the 5th/reverse fork that was broken in the tranny.

That's right around the time the headache started. After we popped the top cover off the tranny and seen the broken fork we ordered a new one, as well as one for the t-case even though we hadn't opened it yet we were pretty sure that was what was wrong with it as well. After waiting the usual 2 weeks for the forks we find that they don't come with new roll pins to install them. Great. So back to the parts store to order some. After waiting three weeks on the pins we finally get told that they have no record we ordered them in the first place... FFS. So we got some other pins that would work. The only problem with the pins we got was that once they were in, they were in. We popped them both apart, got them all together and figured we were free and clear. Before installing them we decided to give them a quick test to make sure they were shifting properly. T-case worked fine, but when we went to shift the tranny the cap on the end of the shift fork shaft popped out and a little ball bearing fell on the ground. ****. The ball bearing had fallen out of place when we were installed the fork and we never noticed. Of course now the fork is on there for good. We spent 20 minutes beating on that pin trying to remove it and it wouldn't so much as budge and finally called it quits when we noticed that the new shift fork had broken from all the hammering. **** **** **** double ****! So two months later and we still don't have a working tranny.

Here is our transmission repairshop on its first day of business. BTW i guess i could have mentioned sooner but my dad has been helping me throughout the build. He is a retired heavy duty mechanic with 40+ years experience working with diesels and all things bolted and greasey, so he has been the go to guy whenever i needed help repairing anything.



Here's what a getrag 5 speed looks like on the inside. We, and by we i mean my dad gave it an inspection while i nodded my head knowingly and figured the syncros were worn down a little but neither one of us wanted to rip the whole tranny apart if i may end up going to a 6 speed in the end. But otherwise it appeared to be in good shape.



If you have your 5 speed out and are going to be changing the fluids anyways i would recommend popping off the one side cover. If you look inside tucked away in the bottom is a magnet, and if yours is anything like mine it will be caked in metal. I couldn't figure out how it came out, didnt want to break it or not be able to get it back in, so what i found that worked great was a telescopic pen magnet. It was able to pull off 95% of the metal that was stuck to it and the varsol/paint gun that i have was able to get the rest when we washed the tranny out.



Here she is freshly painted with a little tremclad flat black waiting to disappoint us with her first test run before installation.



At this point i've run out of photos. I'll have to come back and edit my post to add them later

So rather than let the tranny ruin our schedule we decide to install it anyways as is, since the tunnel is removeable in the ramcharger and we can easily install the top cover at a later date when we find a replacement. And depending on how long that takes we can always just bolt on a cardboard cut out to keep the oil in and shift the tranny manually into the gear we want to drive it into the shop and complete the build.

So we drug the tranny under the truck, got it bolted to the engine and went to install the donors crossmember since it looks to be a beefier unit. What we found was that the bolt holes were roughly a half inch out. Neither one of us figured it was a good idea to drill a bunch of new holes in the frame weakening it considering how many of them there are and the weight they are supporting. Add to that the top bolts would be near impossible to get out of the frame.

Our first bright idea came to us while we were leaning on the front of the truck and noticed that the bolt from the engine mount going into the rubber block under it wasn't centered. It was roughly a half inch out. So what we did was pull both the motor mounts off and swapped them out to the other side of the engine which shifted the motor enough to get all the bolts through the crossmember. Hooray, or so we thought. While underneath the truck admiring our handywork i noticed that the engine was now tilted at an odd angle and after further inspection my suspicions were confirmed when we realised that the motor mounts are different heights to each other and now it sat leaning to one side. So after undoing the afternoons work we started brain storming again. Not all was lost though since through that experiment we knew roughly how much the engine needed to move to line it all up and come up with a fairly easy and simple solution

In between the transmission and the crossmember is a steel plate. The tranny is bolted to the steel plate closer to the middle and the plate is bolted to the crossmember near the edges, with a bunch of rotten rubber pucks in between. The holes in the plate that the transmission bolts go through are actually oblong. So what we figured was all we needed to do was make the oblong holes a little longer. We took it into a machine shop and for 20 bucks had them cut the holes out a half inch further, and voilla all the bolt holes lined up along the frame and the crossmember is finally in. And sorry i never took any photos of the plate and kind of regret it now, but i think once you have the parts in hand it will be easy to figure out what it was that i did to make it work.

edit*** Here is the plate installed with the bolt holes pointed out. FYI it is really hard to draw straight lines with a laptop touch pad.



And that's pretty much it for progress on the truck right now. When i get back home i'm hoping to get the front end back on, get the wiring started/completed, then its just waiting for the borgeson shaft and injectors to show up in the mail and she can be moved in for body work and paint. So from here on out the posts will come a wee bit slower since now i'm working out of town and you are all caught up on whats been done thus far.
« Last Edit: September 6, 2011, 08:06:29 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #25 on: August 31, 2011, 09:11:44 PM »
I checked the senders in both a diesel tank and an 87 RC tank. They mount the same way and appear to be the same size.  {cool}  So find yourself an 86+ RC tank with the curved band strap/hose clamp looking holder and you are goo to go. The straps and tank from the 86+ will fit in you RC no problem.  {cool}

Here's the pics of the crew cab.  ;)

« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 09:14:19 PM by mopar65pa »
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #26 on: August 31, 2011, 09:21:58 PM »
mopar65pa - Nice so i'll just have to pull my tank out of the 87, toss the 78 tank back in it, and slap the 87's in the diesel. Good find on that crewcab, looks like it was in pretty good shape when you got it. Did you do all the body work and paint yourself?


And i just realised that i have already posted a picture of the transmission to crossmember plate. If you scroll up to my photos of the painted parts laying on a sheet of cardboard you can see the plate with the two oblong holes in the top left.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 09:29:57 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #27 on: August 31, 2011, 09:32:26 PM »
mopar65pa - Nice so i'll just have to pull my tank out of the 87, toss the 78 tank back in it, and slap the 87's in the diesel. Good find on that crewcab, looks like it was in pretty good shape when you got it. Did you do all the body work and paint yourself?



Yep it was in nice shape. The floors rotted out from the inside.  :-\ 2 floor pans, some flat sheets for the back floor and all fixed.  ;D

Yes I did the body work and paint. Finished up putting the motor together, put the drive shaft on. I picked it up in SC for $1500 in pieces with a never fired up rebuilt 360 motor and 727 trans.

Here's a pic of the tailgate.  ;)
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline 440 4spd Power Ram

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #28 on: August 31, 2011, 09:36:13 PM »
That is going to be one sweet Cummins RC when you get done {cool}

Funny story about Tony's Crew Cab, it was for sale close to me and I was looking for a cab for my '77 at the time, Tony beat me to it however.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 09:58:36 PM by 440 4spd Power Ram »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #29 on: August 31, 2011, 09:40:21 PM »

Funny story about Tony's Crew Cab, it was for sale close to me and I was looking for a cab for my '77 at the time, Tony beat me to it however.

 he he he..........  ;D
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline 440 4spd Power Ram

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #30 on: August 31, 2011, 09:43:52 PM »
he he he..........  ;D
I'm glad you did, if I would have got to it first the cab would have ended just as the one on my '77 did, with an F-550 in the side of it.

Hijack over ;D
« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 09:52:15 PM by 440 4spd Power Ram »

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #31 on: August 31, 2011, 09:54:45 PM »
440 4spd Power Ram - Thx. I`m just hoping that my body work turns out half as good as mopar65pa`s did. At least i have a little bit of practice after doing body work for the first time on the green 87 at the beginning of my post. It was rotted out pretty bad with some gaping rust holes in it. For those with a sharp eye you would notice the very rear bottom corners don`t quite look right for a Dodge. That`s because that was one of the spots rotted through so they are now the top half of some old 72 chev fenders i had laying around. I cut the top off, flipped them upside down, welded them in, and added a gallon of bondo to smooth it all out :) And when it was all finished gave the whole truck a quick coat of some tremclad charleston green, which is badly faded now and most people mistake for black.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 09:58:17 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #32 on: August 31, 2011, 10:20:27 PM »
ram-it Hey, you have to start somewhere. I started on a 1965 Rambler American 220 at 15 doing body work. LOL..  ;D

I really only started painting about 7 years ago. I botched one job and had to repaint it.  :-[ But the body work looked great....  LOL....

Yeah we had that discussion Leon;)

ram-it, here's the one I'm doing for a buddy/member right now...... http://ramchargercentral.com/projects/76-w200-club-cab-resto/

So how long will you be on the road ram-it? I can't wait to see more pics............
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #33 on: August 31, 2011, 10:36:38 PM »
mopar65pa - Actually i had just noticed there was a projects section directly below the diesel link (go figure) and saw your post and read it. That truck looks pretty good so far, i`m excited to see what it looks like when its finished but i`m with the other guy in there, you should post more details on your methods and supplies to your madness for us noobs getting ready to do our own bodywork. I should be home some time friday night, and then back out again on tuesday. From then on i`ll be working a 10 days on and 4 off shift so updates will sadly be sparce until i`m home more regularly.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2011, 10:54:16 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #34 on: August 31, 2011, 10:47:58 PM »
I used to work 4 10's and an 8. I quit too much work not enough money......  :P

yes I will post up some stuff for the newbe's.  ;)
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #35 on: September 5, 2011, 01:46:51 AM »
We got it running today! Woohoo. Still don't have a gas tank in the truck so what we did was just take a jerry can and hang it up with some wire and run the fuel lines into it for now just so we can get it mobile and into the shop. The tank out of the 87 will eventually get transplanted into it but its currently my daily driver so it will have to wait until i have some time off to do that swap.



Finally got the shift tower working. I found a 'rebuilt' unit from the next town over and it was a POS. Not only did they use a cheap Chinese shift fork to fix it but the top hole where the shifter goes through was squared off rather than round, so when we went to install the shifter it ended up cracking. There was also a couple other issues with it. So we ended up tearing it apart and making one good one out of the two. Just pisses me off i spent 420 bucks on that shift tower and it was NFG. But its together, its shifting, and I'm happy.

Here is the nfg tower. Not sure what the part is called but that thick ring at the base of the shifter is the part that wouldn't go in and cracked the housing apart when we tried tapping it in with a brass hammer.



Still haven't completed the wiring either. We just ran some wires off the battery and hot wired the solenoid and starter so we could turn it over. Also still waiting on the new injectors to arrive.

Oh and the rad leaks. When we were pissing around swapping the motor mounts around we ended up bumping the motor into the rad, i'm guessing that's when it got punctured so that's on tomorrows agenda. Pull the rad and see if we can solder up the hole. Intercooler leaks as well but i'm going to see if a thick layer of paint will seal that up. I don't think the intercooler is that big of a deal right now, and its not a big leak so that will be something i can replace down the road, maybe do the powerstroke intercooler mod that I've seen. We'll see what happens there.

By the end of the day tomorrow I'm hoping to have it in the shop so i can start all the body work. There is actually quite a bit to do, the photo's are a little bit deceiving.

But i'll probably be back on the road tuesday, so that's about it for the truck for now. Not sure how much i'll be able to work on it in the coming weeks.
« Last Edit: September 6, 2011, 08:03:35 PM by ram-it »

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #36 on: September 12, 2011, 11:33:31 PM »
And the bodywork begins. Like i said first looks can be decieving...

Over the rear wheel well was some paint bubbling so i knew i had some rot underneath and of course in a few spots were some clear rust holes and the usual. Since its been a couple years since i did any major bodywork/welding i thought i would ease myself into it and chose a spot on the truck i thought might be a little easier than the rest. Oh how i was wrong

I decided to start on the rear portion in front of the rear wheel well behind the passenger door. It had some rot all along the bottom and a small hole against the edge of the rocker.




First thing i did was peel the steel back like a grape cutting along the edges. It was at the point i had my first clues that i was ****ed. This portion had previously been repaired, but instead of cutting out the old rot they had just welded the new patch panel on top of the old one probably what caused it to rust through since the old rust just attacked the new steel. As i peeled it back to my horror i found the inside completely filled with expanding foam.



WTF. Now i'm wondering what i'm getting into, this was suppose to be the 'easy' part.




Well now what. I had two choices, turn a blind eye and fill her back in with some foam, do a bit of creative sculpting or get to work.

A bit deceiving in the photo but its not actually a flat peice, it needed some bending and tweaking. The bottom will get trimmed off when i'm finished. I may fold it up to meet the outer patch since there is a one inch gap between them, since the donor steel doesn't extend under as far as the 78's.



Next i cut out the donor steel. It's a little banged and bruised but on a long box this peice is actually quite a bit longer than what is needed so i was able to cut out the good part i needed. The other problem was there was no folded edge on the one side where it is suppose to attach to the door jam. Two choices here, either keep it flat and weld on an edge peice or try and fold it and hope it works out. I said screw it and went the fold it route. Turned out not half bad, not perfect but i figure i can work with it. Near the bottom where it meets the door the gap is a little too wide but i don't have another donor patch laying around to do it again so i will have to get creative with it later and see if i can close the gap some how. Or just say **** it, close enough, most people probably won't notice anyways.





Needs a little more bending and tweaking and then i will tack it all in place. I'm thinking i'm going to get all the fabrication done first, and then i'll go back and weld it all in place. For now just going to tack it so i can keep on going and line up the next peices.

« Last Edit: September 12, 2011, 11:37:34 PM by ram-it »

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #37 on: September 12, 2011, 11:48:17 PM »
Looking good man.  {cool}

 I know the feeling about the foam. Seen it too many times.........  :-\
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA

Offline SouthernCharger

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #38 on: September 15, 2011, 01:52:58 PM »
i gotta say i love what your doin to the RC keep it up  {cool}
1987 Ramcharger 4bt/nv4500/205 44hd/14b 4.10s,3" body/10" suspension 37/12.5/16.5 Goodyear military OZ,10" turbine wheels,CAT battery :)

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #39 on: September 17, 2011, 12:15:25 AM »
Thx man, hopefully when i get more days off i'll be able to get some more progress done on her, i know how much everyone likes pics around here

Offline mid_evil_thymz

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #40 on: September 21, 2011, 06:53:10 AM »
 {popcorn}  Cant wait til we get an Update, really nice work so far..
R..........
1993 2wd Dodge P/U. 1st Gen Cummins, auto. Banks Turbo Package, K&N filter, Homemade WVO (veg oil) System, Aftermarket Trans coolers (2) with electric fan. Banks Gauges, Us Gear exhaust brake. 5th wheel, Rhino lined, lots more.... 2004 Grand Caravan (wifes)

Offline kybishop

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #41 on: September 25, 2011, 02:29:34 AM »
Thanks for posting your swap.  I hope to do the same someday with my 78 RC and 92 doner.   {popcorn} {popcorn}
1978 Ramcharger from Guatemala. 
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Offline redram80

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #42 on: September 25, 2011, 12:34:10 PM »
great work so far  {cool}
it will be awsome when you get her done  8)
81 ramcharger 318 , 727 , 208 , dana44,9.25,hei ,31 mickey mtz,b&m truck shifter

Offline Eddie9195

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #43 on: September 29, 2011, 12:45:24 PM »
Great work so far.
"Only the strong survive. The weak are killed and eaten as fingerfood." SDI SSgt Patterson, Platoon 1077, USMC

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #44 on: October 6, 2011, 11:56:01 PM »
Thanks for posting your swap.  I hope to do the same someday with my 78 RC and 92 doner.   {popcorn} {popcorn}

Hey no worries, part of the reason i started this thread was so i could share what needs to be done for those thinking of doing it. Hopefully you got a pretty good idea of what it took to get her in after following along. Essentially at this point in the build the motor is in and running, now its all just finish and body work. If you aren't planning on doing any paint and body work etc you would be done a long time ago in comparison to my build.



BTW just letting you all know i'm not dead, i've had about a half day off since the 10th of sept when i last got a chance to work on it. I'm hoping to get a couple days off in a few weeks so maybe if i'm not too bagged i'll continue on where i left off on the rust bucket. Probably going to be working fairly steadily from now until spring so worst case scenario it might be months between updates from here out. We'll see, i hope not.

Offline needen$77

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #45 on: October 9, 2011, 08:20:23 PM »
do you think there will be any issue with the old frame handling the weight/power??

Offline ram-it

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #46 on: October 10, 2011, 12:07:52 AM »
None, its a good question to ask though. I have the old frame cut up so it will fit in the box of my other truck so i can haul it to the scrap yard easier, i'll cut a smaller peice and do a side by side so everyone can see how they are the same. Dodge didn't really change a whole hell of a lot on these old trucks in 30 years. And according to a quick google search i did a few months back a cummins is less than 100lbs heavier than a 440 which was offered in some ramchargers iirc, so really if you have a 440 with a big bush bumper on the front then your pushing cummins territory in regards to weight. So no i don't think there will be any issues with the weight in the original frame, honestly can't figure out why some guys are cutting up and welding the donor frame to stuff under their rc's, seems like a waste of time to me.

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #47 on: October 10, 2011, 12:21:27 AM »
None, its a good question to ask though. I have the old frame cut up so it will fit in the box of my other truck so i can haul it to the scrap yard easier, i'll cut a smaller peice and do a side by side so everyone can see how they are the same. Dodge didn't really change a whole hell of a lot on these old trucks in 30 years. And according to a quick google search i did a few months back a cummins is less than 100lbs heavier than a 440 which was offered in some ramchargers iirc, so really if you have a 440 with a big bush bumper on the front then your pushing cummins territory in regards to weight. So no i don't think there will be any issues with the weight in the original frame, honestly can't figure out why some guys are cutting up and welding the donor frame to stuff under their rc's, seems like a waste of time to me.

If I remember right the frame thickness is different between the newer frames and the pre81 RC frames. But there have been quite a few guys on here that have dropped a CTD in there pre81 RC with no frame mods and had no problems.  ;D

The only thing I can think that could cause problems is pulling a very heavy trailer and "twisting" the frame. But with a full length solid body on the frame I'm thinking it's stronger than a pickup anyway.  {noclue}
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
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Offline needen$77

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #48 on: October 10, 2011, 09:32:13 AM »
That is something I would like some more inquiry about. I am debating doing the same but using a mid 90ís truck and don't want my body to bend or crack

Offline mopar65pa

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Re: 78 Ramcharger w/ 91 Cummins Swap
« Reply #49 on: October 10, 2011, 09:40:08 AM »
That is something I would like some more inquiry about. I am debating doing the same but using a mid 90ís truck and don't want my body to bend or crack

I am not sure if they made just the CTD frames thicker or if "all" the truck frames got thicker in the 80's-90's.  {noclue}
I'd rather push a DODGE than drive a chevy or a ford!!!!!!
78 D200 Crew Cab
99 Volvo S70
77 400/727 RC
79 360/727 RC
89 318/727 RC
80 318/435 TD
89 CTD D250
90 CTD W250
73 Charger SE 400/727 
02 883R Harley
85 Merc 300TD
Quote
Ted Nugent called and he wants your shirt back! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFduVeNEWSA