Uhhh Ohhh...2000 Dodge Dakota Sill rebuild

  1. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    Ive decided to prep as many parts as I can before my new brake hardware arrives. Ive prepped the backing plates, axle U bolts and brackets and a few other bits and pieces. It took quite some time to bring the backing plates to life again as there are so many nooks and crannies. The passenger side was definitely worse than the drivers side...seems to be a standard issue with road salt building up on roadsides.....

    anyway...here are a few pics of the progress......

    backing plates are primed with galvanizing paint then finished with bedliner material for toughness...I already had a set of pads, and the drums are still good....but I needed all the springs, parking brake hardware, self adjusters, ect......

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    There are one or two adjustments I want to look into making....The "lash" adjustment between the main sprocket and pinion gear seems a bit too loose to me...and I have to switch the pinion output shaft's connector for the driveshaft so it fits my truck....

    though its not actually going back together yet, I still feel Im making some progress....

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  2. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    I love it when parts arrive!

    [​IMG]

    parts list:

    1) rear brake hardware kit: springs, clips, fasteners for both sides. 10.00 US
    2) self adjusting hardware and E-brake springs kit. One left side, one right. 12.00 US each
    3) rear e-brake cables. one left, one right. about 35.00 US
    4) rear brake hose. 23.00 US
    5) rear axle seals x 2 8.00 US each
    6) rear driveshaft U joint 23.00 US

    not bad all in all. I already have the brake shoes and the drums are in good shape. Ill still need hard brake lines which Ill bend up myself, some brake fluid and rear differential fluid.

    progress!

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
    Pigeon_Droppings2 and mylesdw like this.
  3. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    Progress this weekend does not look like much, but I got quite a few small details taken care of....

    New axle seals installed:

    [​IMG]

    the speed sensor connection sorted and the Pinion flange swapped for the old one....

    [​IMG]

    and the mating surfaces of the pumpkin and cover prepped for new sealant. There were a few spots on the cover and the pumpkin flange that were nearing failure, so they were smoothed out and rust treatment and paint was added in the appropriated spots:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I also dismantled my original rear axle as the inner parts looked like they had very little wear and Ill keep them just in case.The pumpkin was so rotted it felt really thin in places....and the gasket material on the cover had all but failed all along the top right side.....

    sometimes you get there in the nick of time! (after procrastinating, of course)

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
    Dcal, Rig Pig, galooph and 1 other person like this.
  4. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    The brake cables came in so I decided to pick them up after work along with some hard brake line, a few fittings, ect.....
    Here is the rear brake line with upcycled fittings from the old brake line. luckily, they are brass, so are in good shape. I guess the rear line requires them for some reason....the new hard lines will bolt right in after shaping them....all good there...peace of mind!

    [​IMG]

    below is a cool device I built from a U tube video suggestion...works like a charm. You have to reach inside the axle tubes to adjust the pre-load on the drive unit's bearings...how you do this also adjusts the lash between the pinion and drive gear. it sounds a bit tedious, but getting that lash right is important. getting the wear pattern correct between all the teeth on the gears correct is also important...so that is where tightening the nut on the pinion shaft comes in...all these adjustments must work in concert with one another....wish me luck on that....anyway the device I built is made with 2 metal pipe fittings and a length of pipe....the fittings fit the pre-load adjuster perfectly...especially after I filed the galvanizing smooth. I will tack weld the fittings in place and we should be good to go.......(I can use a 1.25" socket to tighten or loosen the pre-load adjusters....)

    [​IMG]

    and the hard brake lines next to the old crusty broken remnants

    [​IMG]

    I also decided to try my hand at what I thought to be a fad....but this stuff really works wonders...Im sure you have all heard about our used clay bars...but I had not yet...The local parts store had a kit for sale so I decided to try it out. Guys, its amazing how much debris sticks to your paint after you wash or even hand polish.....the clay bar just picks it all up leaving a silky smooth surface that wax is then applied to. I did buy this polisher (on sale!) and cleaned off the truck hood and wow...amazing results......

    [​IMG]

    Ill try to get some pics up tomorrow of the hood of the truck...you can see before and after results, just not at night with a flash!

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  5. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    Not much to show here, but I made good progress on adjusting the gear lash and pinion pre-load adjustments...

    I borrowed a dial gauge from a neighbor, and through a lengthy process, achieved a 6-8 thousands tolerance between the final gear and pinion. I also was able to get the main bearings preloaded without changing the tolerance! Everything is connected and it took many repeated procedures of tightening each bearing in small increments, spinning the gears, checking the tolerance, tightening the gears, spinning the gears, checking the tolerance until I could finally tighten the bearing caps to their 100 lb specs....after final tightening of the adjusters to preload the side bearings, and a final check on the tolerance with the dial gauge, I was able to fit the adjuster locks and oil the bearings and gears in prep for installing the axle back in the truck....

    This was a long time coming.....one of those little victories


    JP
     
    HopefullySoon and mylesdw like this.
  6. Dcal Member

    Messages:
    1,302
    Location:
    Antrim Northern Ireland
    Good job JP,
    Did you have access to the manufacturer workshop manual and follow their full set up procedures?
    It might be worth applying a bit of engineers blue to the crown wheel and pinion teeth to make sure they are meshing correctly.
    It's been many years,since I set up a dif but there lots to watch out for.

    By coincidence I just pulled the transaxle out of the alfa and will have a go at setting the LSD (there is supposed to be one but it certainly doesn't feel like it)
     
  7. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    thanks for the suggestion, Dcal....

    I am going to use a grease pencil or maybe even some axle grease just to see where the pattern is....by all accounts, I am very hopeful!....the lash measured within 2 thousands on the 3 points I was measuring from...so Im pleased with that.

    I found a Utube vid, combined with the opinion of the mechanic I borrowed the dial gauge from, regarding procedure. start from the right, work to the left. tighten in increments. setting the lash is done with those threaded adjusters instead of shims...which I kinda like. Shims would require taking the bearing caps off and reshimming to set the lash, which sounds daunting.

    I did get the correct torque on the pinion nut, which sets the preload on that bearing.....not sure what else to check...there is no LSD unit inside my diff.......


    fingers crossed!

    JP
     
    Rig Pig likes this.
  8. Mark E Making it harder than it needs to be.

    Messages:
    191
    Location:
    Isle of Wight, UK
    Looks like a really satisfying job there mate. Good work!
     
  9. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    Yep, great finish after using clay. :thumbup: Mitts are now available and can be washed and reused - dropping a clay bar spells its death knell.
     
  10. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    thanks, guys!

    Here is a pic of the dial gauge set up:

    [​IMG]

    and the shocks Ive had on the shelf for more than a year....the old ones still have good charge in them, they are just rusted quite badly:

    [​IMG]

    and the brake backing plates pre done up for easier installation....

    [​IMG]

    Ill clean up the springs a bit, throw some paint on them and get this axle back in its cradle!

    thanks for looking

    JP
     
  11. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    The final pieces of the axle puzzle getting put in place. Im happy to say the sway bar mounts have been transferred to the new axle and I was a bit nervous about doing this. I just cranked the welder up to 10 and fiddled with the wire speed until I was happy and it went well. I clamped them in place, tacked them first, then welded opposite corners as I went.

    Measuring them was not exactly straightforward. especially if you take into account that when I measured where they were on the old axle, I didnt realize that I was measuring off points that would be just about impossible to measure off on the new axle because of the drive gear being in the way!....(DUH!)

    [​IMG]


    I found a few other points that I could measure from and once square, the brackets match right up to the sway bar. (and there is just enough play in the bushings and arms so that I am confident it will go back together...(famous last words!)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    so its down to the brake lines bent to shape, and swapping in the new universal joint (grease-able!) and I will then be able to get the axle back in place. then the backing plates/brakes, axles/locks, diff cover and fluid!.....

    wow, the laundry list is getting shorter.

    JP
     
  12. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    ITS IN!

    [​IMG]

    -drive shaft U joint installed. (nightmare! the c-clips were so badly rusted they all broke, and 2 were missing altogether!...but its done!)
    -shocks bolted up
    -backing plates installed
    -axles cleaned and installed
    -new bump stops installed
    -rear diff cover installed

    next:
    -brake lines bent and installed
    -anti-sway bar installed
    -diff fluid added
    -axle u-bolts tightened with vehicle weight

    oddly, the pics make everything look really rusty...but it looks much better in person!....?????

    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  13. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    The checklist gets shorter!

    brake drums cleaned up, brake lines run and secured, parking brake cables installed, sway bar and links done......


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    ran to the parts store and picked up some more diff fluid and some more cleaning products as I ran through everything I had on this project!

    Im looking forward to using the Mityvac pump I bought years ago for the motorcycle....should make bleeding the brakes a breeze....

    JP
     
  14. mylesdw

    mylesdw Member

    Messages:
    677
    New Zealand
    Every now and then I get curious and wonder - What is a Dodge Dakota? Then I have to search through the thread to find a picture of the whole thing to remind myself!

    Coming along well, the end must be in sight. You'll need to acquire the next project soon; you always need a little overlap.
     
    jpmillermatic likes this.
  15. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    thanks, Mylesdw, they are nice medium sized trucks....not full size, not small...errr, jusssst right.

    as far as the next project.....one is on the horizon, but we have older cars, so there is ALWAYS overlap...in fact its often quite the juggling act!

    ;)

    JP
     
    slim_boy_fat likes this.
  16. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    Got a pic of the wheel and tire together....I like the effect.... I think I have always painted the drums black in the past.

    [​IMG]

    Now that this adventure with the rear axle is done, Im back on the bodywork!

    JP
     
  17. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    tonight, I tilted the dak bed on its end to make room for other projects...its still workable for sure, and now I can get to both the underside and inside at the same time. While I am borrowing a sand blaster, I will clean up any rust on the dak bed too!

    [​IMG]


    thanks for lookin

    JP
     
  18. HopefullySoon

    HopefullySoon Member

    Messages:
    557
    Location:
    Heywood
    Didn’t this start as a small 5/6 week project .

    Mission creep is inevitable!

    Looking good
     
  19. jpmillermatic

    jpmillermatic Member

    Messages:
    806
    USA-NY
    oh, yeah...I was just going to give the sills the once over....and thennnnnnnnn...

    The upside is that I have gained valuable skills doing this truck....and it gave me the confidence to work on a friends truck...I guess its all good when all is said and done....speaking of being done....well, I wont worry about that just yet!


    ;)

    JP
     
  20. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    You should have used his to practise on first.....:scared:. :D
     
Advertisements