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2nd Gen Dakota 1997 - 2004 Dakota's

Soild axle swap help

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  #1  
Old 05-03-2014, 10:18 PM
BlackDakotaV8_4x4 BlackDakotaV8_4x4 is offline
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Default Soild axle swap help

Have a 97 dodge dakota 5.2 (318) 4x4 I'm thinking and trying to plan on doing a axle swap, I just need a list of axles that I can use for that swap that will work, and what I will need to do so, and later in the future I'm going to put a 5.9 cummins and NV4500 but that's later down the road but what axles will work and from what vehicles ? Thanks
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Old 05-03-2014, 11:09 PM
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late 70s high pinion dana 44 from f150 or bronco seam to be the favorite,youll have to weld on the spring perches though,but,if you can find on from a f150 supercab I think the perches are already there as it had front leaf springs,those are 5 lug axles,if you want eight lug,then find 78 or 79 f250 dana 44 or if your lucky,a dana 60! these are all high pinion 8 lug,there are others that will work also,as long as its a driver side drop,but,you wont have the high pinion...
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:14 AM
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You could have a front diff built custom. Expensive but can be done.
I've seen Ford 9" and Corp 10 1/2" 14 bolt front diffs made.
Awesome. But wouldn't be cheap if you dont know a welder.
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:26 AM
BlackDakotaV8_4x4 BlackDakotaV8_4x4 is offline
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Does a high pinion need to be used or could you explain that to me? What's the difference between the two?
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackDakotaV8_4x4 View Post
Does a high pinion need to be used or could you explain that to me? What's the difference between the two?

the pinion gear is coming out the top of the housing(reverse rotation) rather than the normal coming from the bottom like dodge,chevy,..it helps relieve the driveshaft angle...how much lift are you looking to get,tire size?
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:45 AM
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found some info..http://77cj.littlekeylime.com/index.htm
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Old 05-04-2014, 02:26 AM
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At least 33's and I'm thinking just a solid axle and springs would be more than enough lift, but idk if I should do a solid axle swap or pay 1,000 or so for a 6 inch lift :/
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Old 05-04-2014, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 44dakota View Post
the pinion gear is coming out the top of the housing(reverse rotation) rather than the normal coming from the bottom like dodge,chevy,..it helps relieve the driveshaft angle...how much lift are you looking to get,tire size?
Give a guy to much information and its what he's going to be stuck kn.
Trying to find a High Pinion diff.
Nice, sure, but not essentially required.
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Old 05-04-2014, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by BlackDakotaV8_4x4 View Post
At least 33's and I'm thinking just a solid axle and springs would be more than enough lift, but idk if I should do a solid axle swap or pay 1,000 or so for a 6 inch lift :/
Don't buy an IFS lift kit. They suck. And it's almost as much work to install one of those as it is to do a simple SAS with leaf springs.

The easiest way to do the SAS is to use a Bronco front axle (78-79?) and keep the radius arms. The second easiest is leaf springs.

My front axle is from an 83 Jeep J10 pickup (same Dana 44 that's in Wagoneers. It's a low pinion, but works fine with the amount of lift I have. The high pinion might be necessary if you want to run 38" tires or something like that (mine are 35s), but the low pinion will work fine for 33s.

One thing I gotta say, though. With all the work you want to do (axles, diesel, manual tranny, etc.), you're probably better off selling the thing and just buying a full-size with a diesel and 5-speed. Unless you're really in love with your Dakota for some reason, it will save you a lot of cash and headaches.
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Last edited by Tom A; 05-04-2014 at 06:32 PM..
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Old 05-04-2014, 07:27 PM
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I've already pulled my auto out and put a nv3500 5-speed in, wasn't that bad had to wait to get pilot bearing and clutch master and pedal that was it, install was actually very easy for me being my truck already had the hole in the floor firewall and everything, and I've seen the 6 cyl cummins in a dakota, I just need to know what axles I need to do a SAS with, and how would I level the truck after I do the SAS? And the diesel swap is after I get another vehicle! Thanks for all your help!
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Old 05-04-2014, 07:31 PM
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and how would I level the truck after I do the SAS?
I did a shackle flip in the rear with stock Ramcharger leaf springs. That got me probably 4" of lift, plus I have 2" blocks. I'm not necessarily crazy about blocks, but I like add-a-leafs even less. And 2" blocks aren't enough to cause any problems.

BTW, my front springs are 2.5" lift springs meant for a Ramcharger.
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Old 05-04-2014, 08:25 PM
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Got a few pictures I can look at?
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Old 05-04-2014, 08:40 PM
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I have a few pictures here. Not a lot of detailed stuff, though.
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Old 05-04-2014, 09:02 PM
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What axles with fit my aftermarket rims that's on my dakota now? And could I use both front and rear axles out of the Donner vehicle?
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Old 05-05-2014, 12:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackDakotaV8_4x4 View Post
What axles with fit my aftermarket rims that's on my dakota now? And could I use both front and rear axles out of the Donner vehicle?
Pretty much nothing has the same 6-lug pattern as your Dakota, so you're out of luck there. You can use both axles from the donor, but a Dana 44 will last about 3 minutes behind a Cummins. You may want to go with a 14-bolt right off the bat to avoid doing it twice. You'll also need to find some 8-lug outers for your front axle if you want the wheels to match.
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Old 05-05-2014, 06:13 AM
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With a heavy Cummins up front why dick around.
Dana 60 front and rear.
Stop playing games. Go big or go home.
You've swapped transmissions. Your swapping engines.
Yet your asking us questions about diffs that are just beginner things.
Things everyone knows already.
Buy a Ram 3500 and swap it over already.
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Old 05-05-2014, 08:44 AM
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Well I'm trying to get the right parts so when I do all this , so when I go to drive off after the axle and engine swap it doesn't grenade them.....that's why I'm asking the questions I am, what axles with work best for when I do the engine swap?
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:54 AM
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Quote:
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I have a few pictures here. Not a lot of detailed stuff, though.
I have a 97 and hold a little envy for the Yotas that seem to be able to be lifted easy with a basic kit.. vs ours that is built like a damn SUV..

I would love to do this with my truck; one day if you get really bored.. you should make a break down of parts and costs. or if you have any diagrams of the part built and so on.. think it might be a very usful workup
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by BlackDakotaV8_4x4 View Post
Well I'm trying to get the right parts so when I do all this , so when I go to drive off after the axle and engine swap it doesn't grenade them.....that's why I'm asking the questions I am, what axles with work best for when I do the engine swap?
If I were doing it, I would use a Dana 60 Front and a 14-bolt full-floating Chevy rear. You could also use a Dana 70 rear, but 14-bolts are cheap, plentiful, and super-strong. Dana 60 fronts are pretty expensive (unless you get a unit bearing or CAD axle, but those kind of suck). Better to do it right than do it twice, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jondakotaguy View Post
I have a 97 and hold a little envy for the Yotas that seem to be able to be lifted easy with a basic kit.. vs ours that is built like a damn SUV..

I would love to do this with my truck; one day if you get really bored.. you should make a break down of parts and costs. or if you have any diagrams of the part built and so on.. think it might be a very usful workup
It would be cool, but I'd be doing most of it from memory, and my memory isn't so good these days.

It really isn't a tough job if you have some fabrication skills and the right tools. I collected all my parts beforehand and was able to do most of the swap in a weekend. If I were doing it again, I would consider using radius arms (preferably longer than the stock Ford ones) with coilovers, but I was kind of on a budget and the leaf springs work just fine.
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:42 PM
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If you want to put in the 5.9 you will want the dana 60 front. The 5.9 weight is around 1,000lbs so you will need 8 bolt and heavy suspension. You're better off finding a rusted out/wrecked 1st gen with a cummins and putting your body on the frame.
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Old 05-05-2014, 09:42 PM
 
 
 
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