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nextgen
Dodge Dakota


12/24/2001
23:52:57

Subject: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Well to start off I have some bad news, me and the Dakota were involved in a litte "rocky" encounter....I was turning around in a Cul-De-Sac, and ran right up on a huge landscaping boulder some idiot decided to put right near the curb....Well the worst part is that the cross-member in front of all the suspension components and the part the lower A-arms attach to was wacked pretty good....steering geometry is off just a little bit, but the cross member defineatly needs to be replace. I have a feeling this would be very expensive to do, so I was thinking about a straight axle conversion, I figured this will cost about 600-800 dollars, where fixing the IFS would be well over 1000 dollars...Ok so here are some of my questions....if I was to swap to solid axles, would I need to replace the rear also, I would rather not if I didn't have to....Also I don't want to have to get out of the truck and lock the wheel hubs, is it possible to do this on an older axle?? Also steering, do I have to tear out the rack and pinion or can it stay, im assuming that since it will be lifted it may have to be removed...I need to hear all the good and bad about doing this...oh yeah and I really don't do that much off-roading I just want to lift the truck and make the best out of my stupidity.....What a great Chistmas present to give myself, huh....Everyone have a safe and Merry Christmas.....

Tony
2000 4X4 4.7L Auto SLT +
Jet Stage II, Z-Tube
Custom Exhaust, Extang Soft Tonno
32X11.5X15" BFG All-Terrain T/A Ko's
16.2@80MPH
(Maybe soon to be solid and lifted...ohhh 8-12 inches!!!...HEHEHE..)



nextgen
Dodge Dakota


12/24/2001
23:54:50

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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oh yeah I'd like to keep the stock 6lug wheels is this possibe???

Thanks again in advance!!

Tony



josh
Dodge Dakota
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12/25/2001
01:41:48

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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first i didn't think that the 4x4 had a rack and pinion. any ways, i've got a 1998 2wd ext-cab with a 3" body lift and i looked into and did some research on "The Conversion". man if you can get it done or can do it for around $600-800 i'll send you my dakota so you can do mine or get mine done. the pricing i got for "The Conversion" was $3500-5000 up front with all the parts that would be needed for it, and it take a month or two to complete. if needed, after it would be done i would have to pay the rest of the labor cost. since i live in NASAR country (North Carolina) modifing your truck and getting custom work comes somewhat cheap. for example i'm getting prerunner bumpers (front and rear) made just like the ones from Duffco but the only diffence is the price. for both bumpers it's going to run me about $650 (parts, labor, & paint) that's cheaper then what Duffco charges for just their front bumper ($700+). you can keep your stock rear axle, but it would be smart to change the gearing in it though. the front axle would need to come from a 1979 F250 4x4. about the updating the hubs, i do beleave you can use the hubs out of a newer model Bronco. you'll most likely also need to cut part of your cross member for you transfer case for your front drive shaft, for when you flex your front end. FARE WARNING: your front axles will sit about 1" to 1.5" wider on each side (if you go with that Ford axle) than your rear axle. to fix this you might consider buying a used Dana 60 from a Ram 3500 (i do beleave). to save money you might consider using coil springs instead of leaf springs (since you already the upper spring buckets). you could use the coil springs out of a Bronco. but if you do decide to use leaf springs use Chevy. chevy parts are easy to find and their cheaper than the rest. steering?? we come back to this thing of a "rack and pinion". if you do have one sell it, trade it, or hell just throw it away! go to a junk yard and buy the sterring gear box from a 1997-1999 model dakota. your linkage will proibaly need to be custom made (it better that way. TRUST ME!). if i'm not able to find out an answer for any questions that you send my way there's plenty of guys here that should be able to. so if you got any more questions just ask.best of luck and keep us posted.



jLo
Dodge Dakota


12/25/2001
04:27:32

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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yours may have been more expensive than his would be because you were going from 2wd to 4wd so you'd have to add in a transfer case and everything. but still, i think they're pretty expensive.



Stephen
Dodge Dakota


12/25/2001
09:40:05

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Josh, do you have any pics of your truck. i also have a 98 2wd w/ a 3in body lift waitin on it.
can you send them to rolltide7985@aol.com please?
thanks.



nextgen
Dodge Dakota


12/25/2001
12:09:36

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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I had seen some prices from other posts and they were all about $1000 for front and rear parts....the labor would be done in my garage so no need for labor prices.....oh yeah all 2000+ trucks have a rack and pinion steering setup...and there are no spring buckets on my truck it has the torsion bar setup and doesn't have any type of springs up front....


thanx
Tony



josh
Dodge Dakota
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12/25/2001
14:56:23

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Stephen i sent the the pic of my truck. let me know if you got or not. and jLo it wouldn't matter if it was 4x4 or not. as for you nextgen, how long will it take you most likely? and what state do live in? one last question, how much would you charge to do "The Conversion" to someone elses dakota? oh yeah, sorry about the rack and pinion thing. i had no idea (my bad), so once again I'M SORRY. any info would greatly help. thank you and Merry X-Mas.



nextgen
Dodge Dakota


12/26/2001
02:55:10

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Josh I really don't have any idea, if this does go through I will be doing it for the first time. I live just south of Chicago, IL. And sorry I wouldn't perform this to anyone elses truck.....


Thanks,
Tony



josh
Dodge Dakota
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12/26/2001
16:14:52

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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damn! lol well thanks for the info anyways.



solidak
Dodge Dakota
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12/27/2001
23:28:24

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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i straight axled my 93 dak and have done a lot of research on 97 and up but lack a truck to do it to. i am thinking of marketing some do it yourself kits but am not rich enough to have more than 1 truck and cant talk my wife into driving one too. my truck worked out great and is not much different frame wise. i am in ohio and have talked to a few out west about doing there trucks but can never figure out transportation to and from such a distance. you are addressing a ton of variables and i type slow. so anyone can let me know if they want more of my opinion. i am not THE expert but consider myself very solid axle dakota intelligent.



josh
Dodge Dakota
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12/28/2001
01:48:24

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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hook me up bro!!! how much money did you spend? how much time did it take you? was yours a 2wd? yada..yada..yada.. you know the usal questions. please help me out man!



solidak
Dodge Dakota
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12/28/2001
11:04:58

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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i need to know the type of 4 wheeling your into because there are so many set ups to choose from. did you start modifing a 2x because thats all you had or are you into pre running? i have to look under a 2x truck to check on some things but i have felt during my build up that a 2x would work every bit as well as a 4x if not better in some circumstances. it really depends on your over all goals. rock crawler? mud runner? and what further mods would you do in the future, cause nows the time to pick the right parts to set up for that.



solidak
Dodge Dakota
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12/28/2001
16:28:58

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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reply here so i get an e mail but start a new topic on the off road forum about a solid axle. like i said, i type slow, and i would like to include others in the conv to see what they think.



tj
Dodge Dakota
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1/16/2002
13:45:05

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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i have a 92 4x4 v8, i've been looking at using both axles out of a 79 bronco. it looks like it will work. has any one used these parts before, any words of wisdom
tj
would like any pics of sweet rides

travisfinlayson@yahoo



Crusty
Dodge Dakota
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1/16/2002
17:28:16

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Front axles with 6 lug should be no problem. No you dont have to replace rear. Probably new front driveshaft. Automatic locking hubs, manual ones work better and I would trade in a sec. but i dont think you could make it work with stock. Maybe if you got a 1/2 ton Ram front axle? Most likely the axle you find will be wider than what you currently have so it will need to be narrowed. But good luck that wont be easy to do.



MOLDANI
Dodge Dakota
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10/26/2003
21:32:58

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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IM DOING A STRAIGHT AXLE CONVERSION TO A 2002 CHEVROLET PICK UP AND I HAVE A DANA 44 FRONT AXLE AND IM LOOKING FOR CROSSOVER STEERING KIT OR SOME KING OF SPECIAL SPINDLE FOR THE PASSENGER SIDE THAT I CAN HOOK UP THE STOCK 2WD RACK AND PINION



jon
Dodge Dakota
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6/08/2006
11:28:03

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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I am doining a straight axle conversion in my 2 wheel drive dakota , I need to know if the 2006 wrangler tranny will bolt up to my motor ,I know that the 2000-2002 five speeds will bolt up but not sure about the new six speeds. Also what does any body reccomed for this I see alot on the ford parts but I wan't to use newer parts, I am thinking a dynatrak axle . I have questions on the sterring and also what leaf spring everybody is using. All suggesations will be grately appriciated .



03SXT
Dodge Dakota
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7/05/2006
00:32:57

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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my 03 has rack and pinion and iv seen the 04 sxt with rack and pinion 4x4's so i dunno if ur slt will have rack an pinion



RAM
Dodge Dakota
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1/15/2007
23:02:23

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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Any one hear of an Aeromate? I am a contractor, and was silly enough to purchase a 1993 Aeromate. (It is an aluminum body on some sort of Dodge Chasis. Otherwise known as an "Ice Cream Truck") It has a 3.3 front wheel drive, and a rear torsion axle. Problem is it has a narrow frame width. I need to somehow adapt a 3500 lb cap. rear axle. Any Ideas?



paul
Dodge Dakota
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4/24/2015
17:17:00

RE: Straight Axle Maybe?
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I have the same year Aeromate and can't find a
rear torsion axle. Can I replace the torsion with
leaf springs? Are they on Grand Caravan frames?



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