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#2341122 - 07/21/17 05:46 PM Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Bought my 16 year old son a 1989 Ramcharger a couple of weeks ago. He killed the 318 in less than a week. Overheated on the highway and then developed a wicked knock. Can't necessarily fault him since we have no idea on the actual mileage etc on the truck.

Now, I have to decide to either:

A) rebuild the 318 (been quoted $1500 for rebuild with new pistons, stock sized cam, a valve job, new rings and bearings)

B) I have a buddy with a 340 he puled out of a car 20+ years ago that I know for a fact ran really well before he scrapped the car. He has offered me that engine for $1500 "or so"

C) Find a 318 or 360 Magnum motor to swap in

D) not really an option due to finances but my son wants to put int a newer 5.7 Hemi

E) scrap the truck and find him something else

Thoughts?

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#2341133 - 07/21/17 06:13 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
stumpy Offline


Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 28646
Loc: Grand Prairie,Texas
340 with the correct flywheel and a wood block under the gas pedal to keep a fast young foot under control.

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#2341152 - 07/21/17 06:46 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
GTSDart340 Offline
super stock

Registered: 02/28/03
Posts: 1153
Loc: Avondale, Arizona
5.9 Magnums are cheap and easy to find. Plus they last a long time.
_________________________
1949 International KB-2 "Mater" - 302/T5

1968 Dodge Dart GTS "The Drat" - 340/727

1972 Dodge D200 Adventurer - 318/727, eventually 440/518

2006 Dodge Magnum R/T "The Wagnum" - Hemi

2016 Dodge Durango Limited - 3.6

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#2341184 - 07/21/17 08:05 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
tmef Offline
mopar

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 615
Loc: Independence, KS
I would fix it the easiest and cheapest way, find a used 318 and put it in. I would have given you one two weeks ago if you were closer. But its in engine heaven now. My next choice would be a 5.2 Magnum, but that would only be after absolutely no 318 LA's were out there.

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#2341201 - 07/21/17 08:32 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ahy Offline
master

Registered: 01/22/07
Posts: 7362
Loc: IN
Originally Posted By ChallengerGary
Bought my 16 year old son a 1989 Ramcharger a couple of weeks ago. He killed the 318 in less than a week. Overheated on the highway and then developed a wicked knock. Can't necessarily fault him since we have no idea on the actual mileage etc on the truck.

Now, I have to decide to either:

A) rebuild the 318 (been quoted $1500 for rebuild with new pistons, stock sized cam, a valve job, new rings and bearings)

A $1,500 rebuild is... well... a $1,500 rebuild. If the guy who offered it is trusted and experienced may be OK. How about the carb, distributor belts, hoses ect? It may turn out to be a $2,500 rebuild if the basic engine is reasonably OK to start with

B) I have a buddy with a 340 he puled out of a car 20+ years ago that I know for a fact ran really well before he scrapped the car. He has offered me that engine for $1500 "or so" That was 20 years ago... how about today?

C) Find a 318 or 360 Magnum motor to swap in a good option if you can find a good one

D) not really an option due to finances but my son wants to put int a newer 5.7 Hemi A bit of a science project... how is the rest of the truck? Also expensive.

E) scrap the truck and find him something else How is the rest of the truck? May be a good option as well.

Thoughts?


Comments added. How much of a project do you want and how is the rest of the truck?

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#2341202 - 07/21/17 08:32 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
poorboy Offline
master

Registered: 01/19/03
Posts: 5897
Loc: Freeport IL USA
First question is, will the kid have some skin in the swap? His lead foot will never get any lighter if all he has to do is blow them up.

Him and I would do an LA 318 or a 5.2 Mag. If your keeping the carb, look for an LA 318. Gene

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#2341436 - 07/22/17 10:54 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
volaredon Offline
pro stock

Registered: 01/25/08
Posts: 1201
Loc: ILLINOIS
florida? Scrap a ramcharger? Up here in the rust belt that would be most likely... but down there where theres no snow so therefore no salt or brine on the road? Blown up or not, send it to me here in Illinois. I'll take care of the engine. and drive the He11 out of it.

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#2341483 - 07/22/17 12:42 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: volaredon]
RUNCHARGER Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 15240
Loc: Chilliwack B.C. Canada
$100 JY 318 and he does the work.
_________________________
Sheldon

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#2341763 - 07/22/17 10:26 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
3hundred Offline
master

Registered: 11/05/03
Posts: 4667
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Swap in a magnum, either one, had both, don't have a serious preference 318 or 360, both very good. Have the 5.7, very expensive but LOTS of fun, maybe too much fun. 2ยข

Robert
_________________________
'68 Fury Convertible
'69 300 Convertible
'93 Ramcharger 5.7 Hemi
'93 Ramcharger 318 sold
'01 3500 4x4 Cummins 6 speed
'13 300 S
'15 Durango 5.7 Hemi

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#2342326 - 07/24/17 09:00 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
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Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
The body on the RC is darn close to perfect. The only rust is behind the passenger rear wheel well and is less than the size of a dollar bill.

We have decided not to scrap it since it is so clean and he really wants it due to its uniqueness around here.

I may look in the local scrap yards first before going the 340 route.

Hemi swap is out due to costs and scope of the project. School starts again in about 3-4 weeks and, frankly, I was looking forward to no longer being the morning taxi as I have been for the past 16+ years (including taking his older brother to school everyday from age 3...).

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#2342332 - 07/24/17 09:11 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
19swinger70 Offline
master

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 3597
Loc: Richmond, Indiana
I would think you could find a used, running 318 or 360 locally. Since its for a new driver, I'd get one for a couple hundred bucks and throw it in.
Make him do the work while you watch. My dad did that to me - and 25 years later, I am still playing with cars.
_________________________
1970 340 swinger. sublime 1967 barracuda fastback BB project 55 Plymouth Project

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#2342338 - 07/24/17 09:19 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
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Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
He's already pulled the interior apart and is cleaning and painting whatever needs it plus looking for new seats.


Attachments
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#2342434 - 07/24/17 12:39 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ric3xrt Offline
mopar

Registered: 01/13/06
Posts: 693
Loc: Sellersville Pa
Go 5.7 , spend the cash now and be done with it.
http://bouchillonperformance.com/inc/sdetail/669/742
_________________________
Truth has no agenda, but those with an agenda don't always acknowledge truth

1975 D-code D100
1975 D-code Ramcharger
1977 D-code Warlock
1977 D-Code D100
1978 D-code Mid Nite Express
1978 Lil Red
1979 Lil Red
2004 Rumble Bee
2005 Ram GTX
Any info on these trucks is greatly appreciated
2005 Ram 1500 (drag truck in building
2014 1500 tradesman(shhhh, it's hiding a 6.4 short block under those eagle heads.

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#2343906 - 07/26/17 07:15 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ric3xrt]
dogdays Online   content
I Live Here

Registered: 01/20/03
Posts: 15721
I do not agree. Every kid wrecks his or her first car. The truck needs a 318.

Go to where there are retirees (I know, hard to find down there) and buy a Fifth Avenue, preferably with the hydraulic roller cam, meaning '86 or newer, maybe '85 will have it. My Mom's Fifth had a little over 100K and you could still see the honing marks in the cylinders. I could have reused the bearings, they were all very good. Dress the engine with the stuff from the RC.

The later model two barrel 318s are more efficient than earlier ones, better chamber. I mean the ones in the Fifth Avenues.

Add dual exhaust from the manifolds but nothing else until he's been driving it for a while. He'll have to live with the 2-barrel carb. The Fifth Avenue's exhaust manifolds have 360-sized ports so no need to change, if they fit in the chassis.

The 318 is known among car people as the engine that is too tough to die. So this kid must be super talented. Don't give him anything you aren't willing to have come back as scrap. No 340s and no Hemis. You'll live to regret either of those.

Replacing in kind is the quickest and least likely to result in a dead RC gracing your driveway for the next four years.

R.


Edited by dogdays (07/26/17 07:16 PM)

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#2344135 - 07/27/17 08:26 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
scratchnfotraction Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 05/29/03
Posts: 14972
Loc: Florida
I have a running 91 318 you can have free minus the whiplash roller cam in it. it goes in my other 318 next.

need headers?

got all the hydro clutch stuff with a 4 speed or a nv4500 5 speed for it.

nice 8 3/4 that bolts in as well.

even have a set of wheel tubs if he wants to shackle flip & tub it for some fattys.

I agree with your son.. not many running around here in my part of FL.

I am looking to make a 2x gasser out of a 4x4 RC (or W150) so it has a tube axle and leafs up front.

I say go for it! at his age and having something that old is a good start to having a hot rod in his mid life.

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#2344199 - 07/27/17 09:43 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
vdubee Offline
member

Registered: 06/23/17
Posts: 7
Loc: Louisiana
Are you getting rid of the TBI?

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#2346102 - 07/31/17 08:13 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: vdubee]
ChallengerGary Offline
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Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By vdubee
Are you getting rid of the TBI?

Not sure. I want to keep it as cheap as possible, so I will probably keep it. Thoughts?

I found a 1990 318 TBI locally that I can get for $250. Guy says it ran great and was in his RC as a daily driver but he got a wicked good deal on a built 360 so he swapped it out. I figure I can do timing gear & chain, water pump, gaskets, and freeze plugs on it for around $100 and get him back on the road.

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#2346146 - 07/31/17 10:09 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Hey Scratchinfortraction - what kind of headers do you recommend? I know you have put together a bunch of D100's and am thinking that is the one performance mod I will do while the engine is being swapped...

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#2346147 - 07/31/17 10:12 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
BTW - what is a whiplash cam?

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#2376284 - 09/25/17 08:30 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Update - ended up finding a rebuilt 318 that had some performance upgrades done to it. Supposedly, it ran great in a 71 Dart. Mild cam, 30 over, 1970 340 heads and intake.

Finally started taking the old engine out yesterday (instead of watching the NFL). Hope to have it back on the road by the end of the week for my son. Ordering headers for it this am and should have them here by Wednesday.

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#2376297 - 09/25/17 08:45 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: 19swinger70]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By 19swinger70
I would think you could find a used, running 318 or 360 locally. Since its for a new driver, I'd get one for a couple hundred bucks and throw it in.
Make him do the work while you watch. My dad did that to me - and 25 years later, I am still playing with cars.


Doing just that! He is doing the bulk of the work together with his friend who is also 16. I am getting the new engine ready to drop in while they pull the old one. I know it is taking longer than if I were to turn the wrenches myself, but he is certainly getting some worthwhile experience in the process.


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#2376384 - 09/25/17 10:34 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
bboogieart Offline
master

Registered: 01/12/08
Posts: 3221
Loc: Lost and Spaced
Ahh the good old days.
That is probably how most of us got started.
I didn't have a Dad to help.
So here's a up Fer ya Pops.
My friends Dads were very helpful and supportive.
He'll learn about responsibility, cooperation, and mechanics.
Nice looking truck.
Whats up with that bumper?
_________________________
I have mechanical Aptitude.
I can screw up anything.

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#2376448 - 09/25/17 11:58 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
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Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Needs a new bumper for sure LOL

Yeah, my Dad never helped me either when I was a kid, truthfully, he was not around at the time - he had taken a job out of state. And even if he had been there, he just wasn't into working on cars at all. I tore apart my first 1971 Challenger when I was the same age as my son. No help from Dad, No manual, No Internet (of course it was 1983 Al Gore hadn't invented it yet LOL), just a will to make my car better and faster smile Had help from my neighbors who were Chevelle junkies.

After we get her back on the road, we are going to give her a nice fresh coat of paint (and a new front bumper at the same time). He also wants to add some 4th Gen Ram front seats to make the ride more comfortable.


Edited by ChallengerGary (09/25/17 11:59 AM)

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#2376505 - 09/25/17 01:17 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
bboogieart Offline
master

Registered: 01/12/08
Posts: 3221
Loc: Lost and Spaced
up
Sounds like a plan.
Looking forward to the "after" pictures with some smiling faces.
My first time around was a '66 Coronete 500.
Running like crap.
Took it to a shop.
Still ran like crap.
Figured I could do no worse.
Found out the Library had books.
Bought a cheap set of tools and I was off and running.
Turned out to be bad points.
Once I got a replacement for it,
I tore it down to a bare body shell.
Still have some parts laying around.
That was like 1975.
Learned a lot of things not to do. smile
Neighborhood kids all helped each other out a lot in those days.
_________________________
I have mechanical Aptitude.
I can screw up anything.

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#2376938 - 09/26/17 12:24 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
mopeman Offline
mopar

Registered: 01/25/03
Posts: 523
Loc: Id
While you at it, you should find a 518 so the highway trips are easier on that newer motor.
_________________________
Mopar or no car
MoPar=Massivly Over Powered And Respected!

'93 W250 Ram
'68 Charger
'67 Coronet 500 my steet/strip rod-now a 6BBL!

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#2379974 - 10/01/17 01:24 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Started installing new engine yesterday. Hope to have it fired up later today but keep hitting parts snafus...


Attachments
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getting there.jpg



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#2383129 - 10/06/17 07:15 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
bboogieart Offline
master

Registered: 01/12/08
Posts: 3221
Loc: Lost and Spaced
Coming along very nicely.

I think your snafu is caused by the "Lite" beer.

Always get the good stuff.


Attachments
IMG_4143.JPG


_________________________
I have mechanical Aptitude.
I can screw up anything.

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#2383869 - 10/08/17 12:03 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
larrymopar360 Offline
super stock

Registered: 01/07/11
Posts: 917
Loc: Melbourne, Florida
I came in late on this one, but I think you have gone the right route. Dogdays idea was good too (318 out of '85 or newer..). I would NEVER have spent the money on the 5.7 route for a sixteen year old. AND, you're having him work on the truck. PERFECT! I like others here was working on cars before I could drive them and had a passion in me. I was born with it because no dad to instill it. Paid for my own '67 D150 ($150), rusted out POS, poly 318, 3 on the tree, sitting rotting in someone's back yard. Anyway, I'd still think that 340 you mentioned is a good buy if it was stored properly.

I'm so glad you didn't scrap the Ramcharger! Any year RC is a collectible. I'm working on getting my '79 Power Wagon short bed 360 back on the road btw. I'm in Melbourne Florida.

P.S. Isn't that just like Scratchinfortraction to offer up something free to help out! Good guy.
_________________________
1979 Power Wagon Adventurer short bed factory 360-4
1989 Diplomat ex-police 410 c.i.d. small block
2014 Charger Pursuit 5.7

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#2384168 - 10/08/17 08:51 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: ChallengerGary]
RodStRace Offline
I Live Here

Registered: 09/21/05
Posts: 12383
Loc: Chino Valley
make sure that radiator is checked and/or replaced twocents

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#2384514 - 10/09/17 02:08 PM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: RodStRace]
bboogieart Offline
master

Registered: 01/12/08
Posts: 3221
Loc: Lost and Spaced
Originally Posted By RodStRace
make sure that radiator is checked and/or replaced twocents


You can get a new radiator over the counter for a little over a hunert bux. I have one in each of my trucks. They are plastic and aluminum, but so are the modern cars. I see no reason not to use one unless you want a resto deal.
_________________________
I have mechanical Aptitude.
I can screw up anything.

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#2388067 - Yesterday at 09:08 AM Re: Trying to decide engine option on Ramcharger [Re: RodStRace]
ChallengerGary Offline
top fuel

Registered: 08/19/03
Posts: 2095
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By RodStRace
make sure that radiator is checked and/or replaced twocents
Radiator is brand new - was the first thing we replaced on the truck when he got it. Drove it with the old engine for less than a week before it crapped out. It is the plastic/aluminum version. Seems to be getting the job done.

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