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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings all.  First let me say this board has already proven to be a HUGE wealth of knowledge. So glad to see this. When I turned 16, Dad and I bought a 1966 Chevy C-10 Short/Step for me to drive. We had the engine rebuilt but then did all of the remaining work ourselves. From primer to off frame paint, adding AC and everything else over the next 2 years to get me a SWEET daily driver. The Lessons I learned working on this truck still stick with me 25 year later. Enter this pretty awesome piece of American Steel. I am hoping to use this thead to document progress over the years with my son. He will be 15 in March so we have a bit over a year to go over this tank and make it something he is proud of. I surprised him with it last night and he was beyond pleased.

Yesterday dad and i bought a 1989 RamCharger LE. The body is in pretty darn good shape with very few repairs. From digging into it, the sides were primed sometime. The top was sanded at One point but nothing more done. It is very straight with no signs of wreck. The engine and trans feel strong with no issues and the Transfer case operates properly.  Inside, it has a newly replaced headliner but everything else appears as STOCK. The back seat barely even feels sat in while the front buckets show some sun fading and normal wear as expected. I am amazed that the dash looks almost pristine with just some wear at the bottom. I believe we are the 5th owner and the previous owner barely drove it.

Here is the list of things I know we need to work on.
Larger MUST do repairs
1 Steering Main linkage
2 Other Steering joints
3 Other Front end joints
4 Inspect and repair/replace Front brakes
5 Inspect and repair/replace Rear brakes
6 Diagnose and Repair Temperature gauge

Other Items to Look Into
1 Inspect Front Differential engamement
2 Replace Radio and Speakers
3 Add Tachometer

Small Quick fixes
1 No Power to Message Center
2 Remove Light bulb for Maintenance Required light
3 Wiper blades
4 Replace light in HVAC controls
5 Adjust rear Hatch latches
6 Tighten Passenger side mirror
7 Diagnose and repair power locks

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
As it sits on day 1, we re-rivited the support attachment points on the rear hatch. The shocks could stand replacing, but they work today and hold the liftgate up.  I hope to tackle the quick fix list first or at least try.  we will also do the steering work as it does float as it sits. I believe the linkage arm from the steering box to the rest of the steering is the culprit and the truck came with all of the front end parts we need.  When we are under there I will check the Vacuum operation of the front differential as I am unsure if it works. the Transfercase shifts but because the message center does not light up, i cannot fully test the engagement of the front end. on a gravel road in 4 hi and 4 low the truck grips well but I could not tell if the front tires were putting power down. I did not fishtail at all.

Anyways LOTS to do so we will tackle the small items and IMPORTANT items first, then move on to the rest.
 

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Welcome aboard! Looking forward to watching your progress. I am working with my son to build his 68 Galaxy 500 XL. It is a great project, as you know, to bond and learn together. I just bought rear hatch shocks for mine on RockAuto. I think they are also available at LMC Truck. Enjoy your project!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the kind welcome. Definitely lookin forward to tapping into the knowledge here.

Up first will be a new temp sending unit to get the inside gauge working. It moves slightly so for $15 we got a part. Austin will perform that work Friday.

He and dad may tackle the steering linkage then as well as it also looks straight forward. 2 cotter pins, 2 nuts and some persuasion. Back in the same way.

Also will order some new rotors and pads thanks to a great step by step I saw on this forum.

I have Auto hubs and it is for manual but I'll guess for the auto hubs, just pop the c-ring off the splines and the hub slides off. Pop the lugs out and replace rotors? If so, very straight forward.

I've owned a truck of every major brand and done 90% of my own work. Starting with a 66 Chevy, 95 z71, 2001 Chevy1500, 2006 tundra, 2009 ram 1500 4x4 and now a 13 F-150.

Any of you vets see something on my list you have a pointer for, I'm all ears (eyes really).

Here are the inside shots. I'm just amazed it's not roached. Especially the dash.


Sent from my BLA-A09 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Last Friday we started turning wrenches. Steering Arm from the Steering box to the Control arm has been replaced. the joints were definitely shot. Feels much better, now you just feel the tires flex. Also replaced the Radiator cap as it was loose. Lastly we replaced the PITA to get to Temperature sending unit for the dash. Gauge now works properly and sits just under dead center. VERY happy to see this.

Next up we will redo the front brakes. the pads have about 30% left and there is a noticeable warp in the rotors when you brake hard. Question: am I correct in seeing that we will need to PULL the hubs off (c-ring retainer) and that they will separate from the rotors?

Also about order some LED 161 bulbs to replace all of them in the dash. Anyone know how many total? I was going to order a dozen or so.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GRVN7R6
 

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I just put new seals on my 74 360. I used the cork gasket to stay period correct. My valve covers are the typical sheet metal hydropressed/stamped steel. They only torque to 40 inch pounds and they only have 6 bolts. They don't seal well. You can use some RTV silicone to help seal them up, or you can get a cast aluminum or machined valve cover that has a rigid base and torque them down tighter for a better seal. 
 

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Pickupman66 said:
Last Friday we started turning wrenches. Steering Arm from the Steering box to the Control arm has been replaced. the joints were definitely shot. Feels much better, now you just feel the tires flex. Also replaced the Radiator cap as it was loose. Lastly we replaced the PITA to get to Temperature sending unit for the dash. Gauge now works properly and sits just under dead center. VERY happy to see this.

Next up we will redo the front brakes. the pads have about 30% left and there is a noticeable warp in the rotors when you brake hard. Question: am I correct in seeing that we will need to PULL the hubs off (c-ring retainer) and that they will separate from the rotors?

Also about order some LED 161 bulbs to replace all of them in the dash. Anyone know how many total? I was going to order a dozen or so.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GRVN7R6
There is a good write up here. I just did this on my 1991, and it may be a good time to check your bearings and seals when you separate the hub from the rotor.

https://ramchargercentral.com/index.php?action=articles;sa=view;article=14

Also the lug studs can be replaced at this time as well. For 89 I'm not entirely sure, but I needed a 4 prong spindle nut socket (available at orileys for 20 dollars)

You WILL need snap ring pliers for the C clip, I used these
https://www.harborfreight.com/snap-ring-pliers-with-reversible-action-63938.html

Hopefully one of the more knowledgable guys can chime in to confirm. Check my build thread to see what you're in for, and to get a better idea. It's not bad at at all.

I used rubber gaskets and have had no leaks for the VC

George
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you for the reply. Yes I looked at that writeup and figured it was pretty close to that. However, the Hubs I have just have a large dust cap on them. I do not have the Lock centers. There is a c-Ring inside. Is there a nut of some sort behind those? if so, what size is it and will I need a special socket or can I get a standard Impact socket over top of it?


Also we had a good crawl underneath it. At the Transmission, I saw the Three wire connection, Speedo cable, xfer case electrical and vacuum, but there was also a SINGLE Blue wire that was just hanging loose. as if it slips over a single round terminal.  Anyone know what that might go to?
 

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I have the auto hubs, same as you.

So you'll pop off that dust cap. Then you'll use your ring pliers to remove the c clip. Then there is a big spacer thing with holes in it. Just slides out of there, might need a pick to grab it.

Then you'll have the spindle nut. It is a 4 prong spindle nut socket, remove that. Need the special socket from the parts store.

Then you'll have a washer, that's slotted, can only go in one way, use your pick tool and get that outta there, then you have another spindle nut like the first one, use your 4 prong tool again, and get that out of there.

At that point yank the hub and rotor assembly toward you and the bearing will pop out, and the whole thing will come off of the spindle. Use a screwdriver and separate the hub from the spindle.

Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
GOTCHA!!!!  OK. I have seen that spacer. Too bad I gotta have a stupid special tool. was hoping it was just a 6 sided nut.

at least they have that in stock in my small town.
 

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Pickupman66 said:
GOTCHA!!!! OK. I have seen that spacer. Too bad I gotta have a stupid special tool. was hoping it was just a 6 sided nut.

at least they have that in stock in my small town.
Well I bought that special tool over 40 years ago and I still use it... on the same truck. ;D
 

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Georges1991 said:
Use a screwdriver and separate the hub from the spindle.
I've never been able to do this...

I simply lay the rotor on the ground over a piece of cardboard, then use a large brass hammer, smack the studs through the back of the hub. Once all are out, the hub usually can just be lifted off of the rotor...
 

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I should have clarified!

After pounding out the studs, I use a long screwdriver or pry bar to separate the two. If it doesn't fall apart. Tha is for the clarification!
 

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You can also get a flat head screwdriver or a punch and a hammer and get the spindle nut loose. That's what I did on mine. The nut wasn't very tight, so it's pretty easy. That said, right tool for the job is always nice.

Very cool you're doing this with your son. Me and my dad had a similar, albeit less cool ('01 Kia Spectra) rebuild project when I was ~15. It had hit a deer, we replaced the damaged panels which we had painted, wet sanded and polished the rest of the car, added a small spoiler, put in a sweet stereo, etc. It was an experience I'll never forget.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh wow.  It has been a while since we posted on this thread.  sorta forgot about this forum.  Shame shame...

anyways, here is a list of done.
1. Cherry bombs because ...well.. I had them and they sound delicious.
2. Valve cover seals
3. Exterior?...  well see below.

With Covid in full effect and the fact that we were already homeschooling the boys, My lovely wife discovered that we could get shop class credits for the state of TN by logging his work on the RC.  SO. enter my father. I work out of their house because it is quiet. With them being home, we had the PERFECT opportunity for him to do shop class with his Paw Paw and me. So to their house "Bradley" went.  Twice a week, Austin would come to work with me and work on his truck.

Goal was to do the exterior. Body work and Paint. Austin did MOST of this with our guidance and encouragement.  Remember, we did this when my brother and I were 16 on a 1966 chevy and a 1956 ford trucks.

Photo dump below of Most of the work we got into. We discovered some shoddy mesh and GALLONS of body filler in some areas. this was cut out as best we could and then Fiber-glassed (my sheet welding skills are less than stellar these days).
 

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