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2nd Gen Dakota 1997 - 2004 Dakota's

sorry if this is an FAQ rear end and perf Q's

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Old 07-20-2014, 04:10 AM
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Talking sorry if this is an FAQ rear end and perf Q's

hey everybody in case you didnt figure it out im a newb haha now that's out of the way

1st off what kind of rear end options do i have as far as gearing or just full rear end swaps for my truck (by the way its a 97 4x4 w/5.2 and nv3500 manual transmission)

2nd what are a couple of sites that i could go to for parts because i cant seem to find any good ones with a good variety of stuff or any performance parts for it

3rd what would be a couple of mild performance parts that i could milk a little bit of power out of the 5.2 while keeping it farily reliable

any help or suggestions or links would be appreciated OHH and a decent lift kit that would be good for 2-3 inches just trying to figure out what im going to do to mod my rad dak im soo stoked
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Old 07-20-2014, 10:58 PM
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1. depends if you have the 8.25 (round cover) or 9.25 (octogon cover). I run a part time spool/ratchet locker/lock-rite/whatever they are called in my 8.25 with 4.10's. I think up to 4.56 exist for 8.25 and 4.88 for 9.25.

2. Randy's Ring and Pinion or your local off road shop are your best bets.

3. Don't get me started. Hope you have deep pockets unlike me…and I have alot of mods.

4. No chassis lift for dakota, esp 4x4. You'll be stuck with torsion bar crank and body lift, can still squeeze 33's though.
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Old 07-21-2014, 03:59 AM
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well what im looking for in this truck is a general truck you know going off road and sounding loud and to beat the occasional ricer to the next light all while being fairly reliable lol is this possible or should i lower my standards

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Old 07-21-2014, 07:04 AM
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well what im looking for in this truck is a general truck you know going off road and sounding loud and to beat the occasional ricer to the next light all while being fairly reliable lol is this possible or should i lower my standards
Depends. Did you win the Powerball Saturday night?

I'd drop the "beat the occasional ricer", since what makes it more durable for off road tends to hurt its acceleration capability.

And loud should be a lower level requirement - I've never been fond of loud trucks in the woods (unless your idea of "off road" has nothing to do with any hunting of anything.)

Of course, I'm one to talk - my exhaust is the stock Y-pipe to a new high flow cat to stock exhaust plumbing to a Thrush glass pack to the stock tail pipe ... nice tone, but not overly loud. It's also a 1988 with over 270,000 miles on it ... albeit with a new front suspension under it.

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Old 07-21-2014, 03:41 PM
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well im talking loud as in its how i like it right now i believe it has flowmaster cat-back im not huge in the 4x4 thing but i want it to be able to do it lol i know these are pretty good stock off road or atleast my 02 with 4.7 was id like to soften the ride up a bit because its pretty rough right now that might be as simple as new shocks but i dont want it to have much body roll basically im talking suspension and engine performance is what id like to do but i cant seem to find websites that have anything but oem parts
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Old 07-21-2014, 03:45 PM
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well im talking loud as in its how i like it right now i believe it has flowmaster cat-back im not huge in the 4x4 thing but i want it to be able to do it lol i know these are pretty good stock off road or atleast my 02 with 4.7 was id like to soften the ride up a bit because its pretty rough right now that might be as simple as new shocks but i dont want it to have much body roll basically im talking suspension and engine performance is what id like to do but i cant seem to find websites that have anything but oem parts
All of this really goes down to one huge yet simple question. How much money do ya wanna spend on her?
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Old 07-21-2014, 04:07 PM
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well shes gonna be a continuing project i know it aint gonna be cheap but i love my dak and i want to make her the ride ive dreamed of im just getting some ideas and trying to feel out good websites by the way nice truck djbucky thats a good looking lift for that truck
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Old 07-21-2014, 04:56 PM
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Let me understand this.

You want to lift it, which raises the center of gravity and increases the body roll.

You want to put bigger tires on it, which raises the center of gravity and increased the body roll.

You want it to ride smoother, which means it's more compliant, but without properly selecting anti-sway bars to match, will increase the body roll.

But you want less body roll.

It can be done, but you probably will need $ome major big buck$ to con$ider $uch work on almo$t any pickup truck.

It will NEVER ride like, say, a well dressed Mustang or even my 1991 Cougar XR7.

(I don't expect it to - it's a pickup truck, it rides softer than I was really expecting, and with the new shocks and supsension ... but it DOES roll some, due to how high up it is, compared to the Cougar.)

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Old 07-21-2014, 07:27 PM
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ive decided on a leveling kit and keeping stock size tires just more aggressive ive thought about it a little and the most im gonna be doing off road is hauling my dirt bike or going to the shooting range not hardcore 4x4 or anything or atleast not yet im gonna settle into it and see what it does one thing at a time untill im happy with it soo no i am not currently planning on doing all of that stuff
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Old 07-21-2014, 07:52 PM
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ok im sorry but this pic changed my mind once again on what i want to do i like the look of this lift and tire set up soo much how much of a lift do you guys think this is the description on the pic said it had 33's on it Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 07-21-2014, 08:15 PM
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well shes gonna be a continuing project i know it aint gonna be cheap but i love my dak and i want to make her the ride ive dreamed of im just getting some ideas and trying to feel out good websites by the way nice truck djbucky thats a good looking lift for that truck
Thank you very much! I didnt actually put the lift on, I bought her thst way. But I bought her that way partly because of the lift.
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Old 07-21-2014, 08:28 PM
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how much lift do you have on it
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Old 07-21-2014, 09:07 PM
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how much lift do you have on it

Thats a very good question, im not sure. I was told 2 inches when I bought it, but I believe 35 inch tires wouldnt fit on just a 2 inch lift, sometime I should go measure it. Maybe tomorrow!
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Old 07-21-2014, 09:53 PM
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haha yeah im thinking maybe a 2-3" lift on my dak with some 33's might get it looking like this Click the image to open in full size. but im not sure
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Old 07-21-2014, 11:39 PM
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haha yeah im thinking maybe a 2-3" lift on my dak with some 33's might get it looking like this but im not sure
That looks like maybe a 3" body lift with a torsion bar crank. I used to have a 5.5" Tuff Country lift on mine and it was about that height. Here it is with 33s.

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Old 07-22-2014, 02:04 AM
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Originally Posted by 97dakota5 View Post
well what im looking for in this truck is a general truck you know going off road and sounding loud and to beat the occasional ricer to the next light all while being fairly reliable lol is this possible or should i lower my standards
Here's what I have and the approx cost:

4.10 gears $1000 installed
lock-rite locker/part time spool $650 installed (would have been cheaper w/ gears)
Lincoln radiator fan $55 @ junkyard (motor failed after 2 years, $90 online)
Aluminum OE-fit radiator $250 shipped
Hardland Sharp Roller Rocker Arms $250 shipped I think?
SCT tuner via Hemifever $325 with custom tuning
16 pass under-bed RV transmission cooler + fittings $150
Methanol Injection kit $200
Mounted Slicks $100 used
HID Fog Light kit $100 i think
DEPO black clear corner headlight housings $130 for the pair?
Cheapo 55W fog lights mounted inside bumper $25 at parts store
Electric Drive water pump system $175 or so
Dual Line Locks (F/R) $80 or so (haven't bought tubing to install them yet)
Electric Transmission Temperature Gauge (installed into cooler line) $60
UltraGage Digital OBDII Display $60 or so

I think that's it…maybe….
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Old 07-26-2014, 07:28 PM
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That's a good looking truck tom how much do you think a lift like that would cost without installation and how did you like the tuff country lift
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Old 07-26-2014, 07:39 PM
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That's a good looking truck tom how much do you think a lift like that would cost without installation and how did you like the tuff country lift
Thanks!

The Tuff Country lift wasn't bad, but it really wasn't built for any kind of serious off-road use. If you're mostly after "the look", though, it's a good option.

I didn't keep track of what I spent on the SAS (on purpose), but I would estimate that I have about $3k into it, including changing the rear axle so the bolt pattern matched the front. I did all the labor myself.
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