Author Topic: 1983 Dodge Power Ram  (Read 9306 times)

TOASTY

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2018, 07:31:24 AM »
I have Josh's Mighty Max in my garage right now, lets see if he picks it up today.

JohnnyBfromPeoria

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #31 on: January 31, 2018, 07:47:39 PM »
I texted him to ask, but he's probably burning incense and chanting some Buddhist stuff and can't be bothered to answer me in his Zen moments. Or it's just not a good time, I don't know.

So, I can't help myself with LED lights. I ordered what I "think" will work for: a cargo/bed light, 5" wide and sofa-king bright, to be controlled by a switch-to-be-determined inside the cab; a dome light that may be able to be placed about where the original one was and has it's own switch built-in, never mind using the door jamb switches (delete them in the circuit); two small "map" lights that have a limited swivel action base and their own switch built-in; a couple of different color bulbs for the shift selector (red and warm white - we'll see what I like better); a couple of different color bulbs for the center gauge pod (also red and white); four new brake light bulbs; two new reverse light bulbs; four new side marker bulbs, two amber and two red. I'm not messing with the turn signals yet and I can't justify spending what is being asked for LED sealed beams to replace either the high or low beam units I already like, although the high beam units would be super/uber cool, at something like $160 EACH, I can't swing that. Incidentally, Mitsubishi elected to use two completely different bulbs for the shifter and for the center gauge pod. One of them is a wedge base and one is a bayonet base. Once I verify I measured and guessed correctly on those bulb types, I'll post it. Hopefully ditto on the side marker lights, as there I went off the SuperBright LED's bulb-finder look-up, as they had those listed (they didn't have the other two, or they were obviously wrong, can't remember).

I hit my super-beat-up used Montero seats that came with the truck as an extra, on the side pair, with a tried and proven product after work, the Resolve spray-on, rub-in and vacuum out when dry stuff. These crappers sat outside for who knows how long, but they're better than the seats that came with the truck and will get seat covers anyway. I just don't need them to smell particularly bad until I start gassing them with my own brand. I also got another pail of Capture, which is great stuff, if you've never tried it. It's made largely from dried up corn cobs and it absorbs stains and odors really well, doesn't leave much residue and vacuums out as well. That's stage two for the crap-seats.

I put new nuts on the exhaust manifold to fix where there were none, because they keep vibrating/thermal flexing off. It still has a big leak/crack somewhere. I'll probably want to replace the manifold with the long tube one I have and just get the whole system redone locally and custom. I'll have to retain a catalytic converter for emissions, but have some flexibility with a muffler. I'll keep the pipes small diameter for the scavenging effect. But that's down the line. Don't really care about that part yet.

John B.
AZ Crew/East Sider/Former 14th St Crew
95 SR, 35x12.5-15 on 8" steelies, 2" BL, stuff cut off, stuff welded on, lights, sound, front ARB pending
87 Raider, There's a turbo 2.6 under its hood, really
83 "Dodge" Power Ram 50, a bit lifted, way slow and gets more comments from random people than the other two put together
'95 Montero SR. Pretty much stock, Trail Gear Sliders, ADD skid plates, Stereo by Shovel, Timing maintenance by Pa_Jero

JohnnyBfromPeoria

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #32 on: February 11, 2018, 10:29:42 PM »
Not much to update on the 'Rammer. I "fixed" my radiator leak near the top hose inlet the old fashioned way, with JB Weld, which held when I drove the umpteen miles n back to Pa_Jero's house to pick up yet another set of SR chrome wheels on Saturday. The new carb works really well and it has lots of power even after reaching cruising speed. I filled up with gas after the trip but haven't gone out to do any real-world-testing to see where it's at now, but I expect a return to high-teen, maybe 20-ish mpg. Still not sure why anybody would mess with a Weber when the option of a $225, guaranteed forever, direct bolt-on option is available. It'll never be a pavement burner, no matter what, in stock form. I made zero adjustments to the carb after unboxing it and bolting it on, and it starts and runs just about perfectly.

My temporary fix for the rust holes is to clean them up, spray paint them with rust reformer and use real metal duct tape over them. I was sold on this stuff about ten years ago when installing a rooftop vent cap on my old house and needed something that was easy to use, weatherproof and would last. And it's a cheap, old truck, so who cares for now. If Toasty wants to fix it with his magic welds, I guess it'll happen, otherwise, I'll just cover that shit up. It's not Illinois, where rust just grows like weeds, anyway.

My Rock Auto cart is full of stuff most people would not approve of, brand-wise, for the steering and suspension that needs to be fixed. Hey, I kind of like Mevotech ball joints and Beck-Arnley upper a-arm shaft kits, myself. At least the idler and Pitman arm are Moog.

Major time again this weekend was spent with the Kill Bikes, the little, overpowered mini bikes Jorge and I have obtained. The track has developed with two different lap orientations for variety and added danger. The possibility of rain this weekend should help with track conditions, as we seem to be grinding all the gravel into sand and dust (adding new levels of danger!).

I guess I'll see some of you cool dudes on Saturday.

John B.
AZ Crew/East Sider/Former 14th St Crew
95 SR, 35x12.5-15 on 8" steelies, 2" BL, stuff cut off, stuff welded on, lights, sound, front ARB pending
87 Raider, There's a turbo 2.6 under its hood, really
83 "Dodge" Power Ram 50, a bit lifted, way slow and gets more comments from random people than the other two put together
'95 Montero SR. Pretty much stock, Trail Gear Sliders, ADD skid plates, Stereo by Shovel, Timing maintenance by Pa_Jero

Lordtrunks

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #33 on: February 12, 2018, 03:13:32 PM »
I'm happy with moog's tie rods
Diesel 89
Doesn't give a fuck

JohnnyBfromPeoria

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #34 on: February 14, 2018, 05:41:24 AM »
I've always been happy with Moog stuff, too, so after thinking about it, I switched as much of the steering and suspension stuff back over to them in my shopping cart, which jacks up the shipping some, but gets me lower ball joints, inner and outer tie rod ends, Pitman and idler arms from them. They don't offer the upper ball joints for either the Dodge or Mitsu version of the truck (I always check both because sometimes the companies don't catch the cross-over), so those stayed Mevotech.

I've done a couple of Gen 1's suspension/steering rebuilds now, and have retained some knowledge about keeping them stock and making the job a little easier that I can pass on. The upper a-arms use a shaft assembly instead of a-arm bushings, and it's really important to loosen the end nuts on those while the arm is still bolted into the truck. You'd have a bitch of a time getting them loose while the arm is in a vise afterwards, for example. Per the FSM, make sure to exactly center the threads on the new upper shaft when installing it into the a-arm or your caster adjustment is going to be out of whack. And have a shaft installed, preferably the old one, in the a-arm when pressing out the old ball joint and pressing in the new one or you stand a good chance of bending the shaft alignment by actually re-shaping the arm when you're pressing the ball joint itself. Bolt the a-arm with its new shaft and new ball joint back into the truck and put the shims in place, then tighten it up, THEN tighten the end nuts on the shaft to final spec, maintaining the centering so important to keeping caster correct. And what is that spec, you ask? Guten-tight, since I can't remember finding the actual number. I'd wager a guess to say that over the life of these vehicles, virtually no one ever replaces those shafts, but it's a metal-to-metal wear surface for the upper arm to pivot, so it'll eventually need to be done and they're relatively cheap. The upper arm HAS to come out to replace the upper ball joint anyway, and if you're staying Gen 1 with the suspension, it really should be done.

John B.
AZ Crew/East Sider/Former 14th St Crew
95 SR, 35x12.5-15 on 8" steelies, 2" BL, stuff cut off, stuff welded on, lights, sound, front ARB pending
87 Raider, There's a turbo 2.6 under its hood, really
83 "Dodge" Power Ram 50, a bit lifted, way slow and gets more comments from random people than the other two put together
'95 Montero SR. Pretty much stock, Trail Gear Sliders, ADD skid plates, Stereo by Shovel, Timing maintenance by Pa_Jero

IncorpoRatedX

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #35 on: February 18, 2018, 06:38:31 AM »
I've got a ball joint press that'll make a liar out of you...

Did both my Gen 1 upper ball joints on the truck.

You can borrow it, if you dont want to deal with the shaft.

JohnnyBfromPeoria

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Re: 1983 Dodge Power Ram
« Reply #36 on: February 19, 2018, 08:39:18 PM »
Now that IS fascinating, IncX. I hadn't thought it would be possible to do that, so I may consider taking you up on that. On the other hand, pretty much everything is beat on this truck and the shafts aren't particularly difficult to do anyway. If your press can be used off the truck as well, it is likely a safer solution to using my straight 20 ton monster anyway. That thing can bend practically anything.

Toasty fixed the rust holes!! He is truly a master with the welding. Big thanks, Dude.

Toasty also came up with a spiffy name for the AZ Crew subsection charged with another one of my projects, but you'll have to read about that in the Gen 1 section.

John B.
AZ Crew/East Sider/Former 14th St Crew
95 SR, 35x12.5-15 on 8" steelies, 2" BL, stuff cut off, stuff welded on, lights, sound, front ARB pending
87 Raider, There's a turbo 2.6 under its hood, really
83 "Dodge" Power Ram 50, a bit lifted, way slow and gets more comments from random people than the other two put together
'95 Montero SR. Pretty much stock, Trail Gear Sliders, ADD skid plates, Stereo by Shovel, Timing maintenance by Pa_Jero