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02 Dakota QuadCab 4x360x40s

Mad Max

May 19, 2020
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...02 Dakota 4x4x360x4spx4spx40s n stuff... - and now back to our irregularly scheduled program -

To Recap the project (from the other site) - I'm doing a completely ridiculo-I mean badass buildup of my 02 Dodge Dakota Quad Cab SLT 4x4, including a 440, 46rh, Atlas 4, D60, 14b, and 40's, and enough voodoo to...to...I dunno...to make anyone reading this shake their head - yup.

(Edit - decided to go back to the original 360...with upgrades, pg 6 or so...)

Ok - I was working on the two gas tanks - yes two - I out-boarded the frame 3.5 inches per side to make room for a second 24-gallon Dakota gas tank and room to stow my 40" spare under the bed. I finished installing the tanks, complete with their new sending units. The original sending units were not going to do the j.o.b. so Wayne milled a pair of aluminum pucks the same basic dimensions as the OE sending unit tops. Then with a bunch of hardware from Tanks.inc, some brass fittings and aviation sealant #3 (see note below!) everything is bolted/sealed up for the long haul. A nice bonus was scoring brand new OE sending unit rubber seals from the dealer for less than online. All I need now is 48 gallons of go-go juice 🤣

Note - do NOT use aviation #3 to seal fuel fittings - the Ethanol (alcohol) in today's fuel will dissolve that particular sealant and make a huge hot fucking mess - use Teflon tape or other Ethanol-proof sealant like Gasoila E-Seal (allegedly).

Also...don't use brass fittings in aluminum hardware - the brass is corrosive to aluminum - use steel fittings...



main tank sending unit -



aux unit -



new OE seals -


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...things are gonna get toasty under there and I figured I'd better try to mitigate any potential meltage now. Wrapped the muffler with a DEI wrap kit, wrapped the twin inlet tubes with header wrap, and DEI peel-n-stick heat insulation directly on the tanks -





and now that there's nothing more to work on underneath there...on goes the big up-armored belly cradle -





the bash bars will protect the back halves of the tanks - I just haven't finished them yet...


so...that's where it's at - slow progress...but sure progress 👍
My pleasure :grinpimp:

...reinforced what seemed to be a couple more potential crumple zones in the frame - at least they look like crumple zones...or used to -

before -



after -



before -



after - and this one happens to be right where the gearbox will bolt up so, bonus


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alright - finally got the engine all buttoned up. Oil pans aren't made from the thickest metal and the chin of the big 8-quart Milodon unit I'm using hangs down a bit and I wanted a little somethin' extra down there to help prevent 'unauthorized access' from rogue rocks, logs, Jeeps, etc., so I fabbed up an armored base from 3/16 plate and welded it to the bottom of the pan. Used a deathwheel as my 'poor mans' brake' to scour the fold lines, made the bend(s), and welded back solid - worked great.



...went with this sweet double-side o-ringed windage tray (Summit G-2339) to seal things up (hope it works as good as it looks) and studded the bolt holes -





the d-side front corner of the pan was 'close' to the webbing on the D60 axle so I sectioned off the corner just for good measure...




Next - time to put this dude where it belongs...
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alright - starting' to look like something

Engine's in, and front suspension/axle are in -



Front 60 is all buttoned up and ready to rock, complete with Dana/Spicer 5.38s, Grizzly Locker, Reid knuckles, RCV shafts, Speed House GM brake conversion brackets, Yukon spindles, Warn hubs, and a Crane cover with LubeLocker gasket -





These things are pretty cool to work with -



Welded some armor to the lower kingpin caps hoping to keep from ripping off the zerts -


The GM rotors fit over the Ford hubs from the outside and the wheel holds them in place (OE Ford rotors are held in place on the inside by the wheel studs), and in order for the GM rotors to clear the Ford hubs the outer diameter of the hubs had to be machined down a bit as did the centering race at the WMS. Fortunately Ben was able to chuck up the hubs in his lathe and turn 'em for me, and another nice perk was the fact that the OE GM wheel studs press right into the original Ford holes, so now all the wheel studs are all from the same '02 GM 2500



Speaking of grease, RCV has their own grease, and for the rest I started using Lucas Mining and Construction grease with Moly, which the company says is also good for high-speed/high/heat wheel bearings (disc brake systems), and it's ideal for all metal-to-metal contact points like tie rods and suspension joints, so now all I have to carry is one type of grease


Very cool. HP specs on the engine? Why front leafs?

the engine is pretty much just a fresh stock RV rebuild - lotsa torque and reliability, with some modern updates - don't really need a lot of hp. I like how leafs 'perform' - they just work and are predictable, and great for driving on the street, which this truck will see a lot of.


decided to go with a high-steer kit from Ballistic Fab, and I'm now working on finishing the exhaust and other chassis items in preps for dropping the body on for the last time.

p-side -


d-side -




PSC did their rebuild/ram-assist voodoo on a Scout II gearbox, and this is more or less where it will be going -


...exhaust is finally - finally - done...

too tired to explain everything, but the short version is I added a second muffler, relocated the cutout, and decided not to use header wrap on anything and instead fab'd up two aluminum bolt-on heat shields and am using both muffler wrap and form-a-blanket from DEI.









Man, I would love to have/build something like this. I've got my eye on a quad cab body and frame right now. Good job!
thanks! For the wheeling we do and the trails we have here...and being pretty true Mopar fans...a quad cab Dakota was a perfect machine to start with for us. This one is being primarily for hard-core overlanding - it'll handle the multi-day camping gigs as well as the class 7-8 trails we have in/around here in Colorado (plus Moab, Rubicon, South Dakota, etc), and it should be 100% daily/highway-drivable. Should be a pretty strong machine - I just hope it runs/drives as well in real life as it does on paper
actually I'm using three different types of DEI heat insulation; the super sticky peel-n-stick Floor-n-Tunnel Shield applied directly to the tanks and crossmembers (050503), the muffler wrap directly around the mufflers (010455), and the Form-a-Shield/Blanket (050519) directly to the curved section. I used both their stainless locking ties and worm clamps, and I prefer the worm clamps because they're 'reusable/repositionable'. Anyway I am really happy with their products.
copied a mod I did on the last truck which worked really well - modified the rear overload to serve as an anti-wrap 'bar': drilled holes, countersunk 45* flat head cap screws, broke the 1" x 3/16" steel strap, cut the excess bolt thread/welded/smoothed the bottom nut so rocks won't rip them off, and viola - anti-wrap bars, especially at max drop (on either side), and the suspension can articulate 'naturally'. The overload itself spreads out the typical wrap inherent with short axle perches, and max drop is just after contact with the bolt sleeves. Plus the straps keep the overloads from 'kicking out'. Plus, as heavy duty as the overload is I'll probably never 'need' bump stops. Anyway it worked great on the last truck which had a ton of low end torque and axle gearing and bigger tires, so I figure it should be just as effective on this truck.

Also, filled the Atlas with 2.5 quarts of Redline MT-90, and started running the gas tank plumbing. It's slow progress...but it's forward progress...






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Just looked over that exhaust and drive shaft. Talk about 10lbs of shit in a 5lb box. Any worry of the driveshaft making contact with anything? It looks super clean by the way just super tight.
yer not wrong - it's snug in there. No worries on contact tho - the rear shaft is a two-piece unit and the front half is anchored to a carrier bearing under the muffler, while the rear half can dance around. The exhaust in that section is also essentially fixed in place. According to my eyeballs nothing will rub...
...I'd long wanted to test-fit the OE Dakota 360 air intake hat and air cleaner assembly, and after a careful bit of 'plastic surgery' the id of the hat now fits the Holley throttle body perfectly. Looks like it's supposed to be there, and matches nicely...and I can use the OE port on the back to intake the charcoal canister fumes, just like factory.



here's where I started trimming off the bottom edge, and just went all the way around and it fits like a glove -


I had also thought about using this hi-zoot intake from Extreme Velocity but it just isn't necessary, especially considering this engine is a 800-4500 rpm torque engine and the inlet is the same size on both - 3-inch




Gonna work good...
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I just trimmed off the plastic molded sections that I think were designed to line up with the factory kegger - either way I removed those bosses and it fit perfectly.


here's how it looks on the inside. I don't think this hat will fit over the choke horn on a carbureted setup - there would likely be too much interference with the metal supports internal to the air hat, but on a setup without any 'above deck' choke etc it should fit and function great.

so...I'm OCD on how my shifters 'throw' - I like all of the low range options to be the same direction (forward) and hi range rearward - just how my brain likes it, and because of that I had to modify/extend the Atlas doubler bracket to operate on the other side of how it comes. Now, when I'm "all in" all 3 shifters will be pushed forward, and vise versa when in hi range. Here's the result -

Here's how the bracket bolts up normally (with the shift lever aiming to the d-side and low range being 'back' - disregard my hand-written marks - I had it backwards...) -


I flipped the shift lever 180* and made brackets to shift it from the opposite side, reversing the throw, and marked it appropriately -



used half of the original bracket and fabbed my own new extended half, flipped the lever 180 - perfect -



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What’s your plan for switching or transfer valves from the two tanks at fuel injection pressure (>58psi)? Most solutions seem to be aftermarket parts, I was hoping to adapt something from a stock rig on a similar fuel system.
the two OE tanks will use standard 4-5 psi low pressure pumps to send fuel - the main tank sends fuel only to a small stand-alone RobbMc EFI surge tank under the hood, and that surge tank has the EFI pump inside it that sends high-pressure fuel to the EFI. The aux tank will only send fuel to the main tank (I'm retired Air Force and I just had to create/check the box for 'in-flight refueling' :cool2:), but there's a bypass valve between the two tanks and with the flip of a lever the aux tank will instead send fuel to an external hose to fuel up other rigs, ATVs, etc.
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...BIG milestone achieved yesterday/today - after 22 months the cab is finally back 'on'. Had to make just two minor clearance mods to the fuel vapor line routing and trimmed the bottom edge of the back of the cab to get better access to the two fuel filler units, but otherwise it dropped right onto the mounts just like it was imagineered for it. Had a set of 17" dually wheels and bolted 'em up to make it easy to roll the chassis underneath the cab...and along with using both shop cranes Ben n I carefully and precisely lift the cab up off the uberstands and then down onto the chassis...and we were able to safely accomplish the j.o.b 👍





reinstalled the under-floor sound/heat insulation -


good clearance between the valve covers and firewall -


here's the twin charcoal canisters plumbed in and ready to keep the truck from smelling like raw fuel (bleck) -


real good clearance for all of the shift linkage -


Wheels n tires are next, and the thing will finally be 'weight on wheels' 👍
...bolted up two of the beadlocks and stuck 'em on the axle, and just had to toss on a fender to see what it's really gonna look like, and yah I'm diggin it 👍



real good fender clearance -

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