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Other Rides and Builds A place for the discussion of Colorado "Side Projects"

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  #31  
Old February 1st, 2016, 09:32
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Got the driver's seat in... testing it for a while, it may sit a little high.

Truck barfed all its coolant out on the way home from work on Friday, so after a couple hours on the side of the road and a AAA ride home, I swapped upper and lower rad hoses, coolant filler neck (its in the upper hose, not on the radiator), cap, and t-stat. All ready for the blizzard!
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  #32  
Old February 22nd, 2016, 11:39
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

This wrenching thing is always a bit of yin, a bit of yang...

I've been cruising the Golf driver's seat for a few weeks, trying to be sure I liked it or at least could live with it prior to fabbing up/installing the passenger -- I haven't loved the seat (the Nissan seats in the Titan were uber plush, and I'm spoiled), but decided I could deal with it. Found a deal on a center console (stock was a split bench) so I cruised up to Denver to pull it on Friday... turns out the console was surrounded by "agate" (I'm stuck on Jeep terminology) heated leather seats, and the console had the heat controls... I ended up getting both front seats (out of a Durango) and the console for just slightly more than I would have paid for the console, so it was a weekend project:

The Dakota was wired for a power driver's seat (black end), but not passenger - I took the pigtails from the donor jeep (white end), and simply jumped the driver's power over to the passenger side. I also pulled the heated seat pigtails (green end) for both seats from the donor vehicle:


Power plugs were the same Durango v. Dakota, just different colors:


Had to cut the passenger side carpet and pull the wire to the center for splicing:


Passenger done:


The stock Dakota plug (right) was a 4 pin, just for the power outlet in the console, donor plug was a 10-pin (left) for the heated seats - fortunately, I grabbed this harness from the donor too, and the wire colors were consistent between the donor and my truck, so I simply matched up the appropriate colors from the pigtails, more or less... there were two (2) red/tan wires in this bunch, with one being power to the outlet in the console and one being a heated seat lead... I screwed that up first time around. I then ran the switched power for the heated seats (violet/black) to the fuse box on a piggy-back fuse... slot 22 was already available for heated seats:





Done:


and done -- that is the "yin":

Last edited by xj-grin; February 22nd, 2016 at 12:02.
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  #33  
Old February 22nd, 2016, 11:58
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Comfy heated seats on the cheap = big-time-yin.

The "yang", however, is that in getting these in for some reason the power to my stereo, power mirrors and dome lights crapped out. I'm a bit puzzeled, since I did not cut into my harness anywhere, except for taking power from one seat to the other. Fuses for all three items are in-tact. F'g mopar electrical gremlins.

Further, I went to install the Jet speed sensor adjuster and try to get my speedo back accurate with the oversized tires -- easy peasy, spliced into the specified ABS sensor wire (white/orange), grounded it, and powered it to the fuse panel:



except now I have no speedo at all... cripes.
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  #34  
Old February 22nd, 2016, 12:33
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

power is back on... I knew it had to be a fuse. per the googler: IOD (Ignition-Off Draw) fuse - aside from a few other things like the lights, it also controls the always-on memory circuits for things like the radio, computers, etc... its hidden behind a fuse cover that is a bitch to remove, and labeled "interior lights", so I missed it first time around.
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  #35  
Old March 6th, 2016, 16:50
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

squeeks like an army of angry squirrels. Ball joints are supposedly not serviceable on Dakotas, supposed to replace the entire A-arm... I think they could be serviced, but since the a-arm assemblies cost about $30 more than the ball joints and bushings, what the hell. So in the next couple weeks I will be replacing sway bar bushings, tie rods, upper and lower a-arms/ball joints/bushings. While I'm at it, I'll be upgrading to 03-04 brakes, which are larger discs with dual piston calipers... knuckles got cleaned up and painted today.


since I am not replacing the CV shafts or unit bearings, you can bet they will fail shortly...
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  #36  
Old March 6th, 2016, 17:10
in4aride in4aride is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Any chance of wheel interference with new brakes??
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  #37  
Old March 6th, 2016, 17:21
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Nope - I have the same factory 16" alloys used in 03-04
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  #38  
Old March 6th, 2016, 17:25
in4aride in4aride is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Cool. That makes things easier then.
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  #39  
Old March 24th, 2016, 12:07
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

So as noted in another thread, the Jet Speedo unit is simply a POS and doesn't work -- Sam (zluster) re-flashed my computer in about 5 minutes with his DRGIII tool, and presto, i am speedo-accurate. Sam is da man.

Completed the first extended road trip in the Dakota from the Springs to Northern Wyoming over the weekend -- 900 miles or so round trip. Seats were comfy, and the ride up was uneventful. After meeting Wes (Buckshot62) for a beer at the Clear Creek Brewery in Buffalo and delivering his hi-lift mount (thanks, Wes!), we decided to take a Sunday drive in the Bighorns -- gorgeous 65* day, no wind, clear skies... who knew there were petroglyphs in north-central Wyoming?:






totally alone in this state park, except for some wild turkeys - picnicked by the creek, looking to be an awesome day, until.... the transmission in the Dakota took a crap in the absolute middle of beautiful nowhere:


we were right in the middle of the red-dotted line on Red Gulch Road (map from the bottom) when the truck simply stopped moving up the relatively steep (5-6%) dirt road:


there was smoke coming from the transmission dipstick, and it registered no fluid, even though I checked before we left the house and it was full/bright pink... of course I had not managed to move my crate of fluids I ALWAYS carry into the Dakota, so all I have on hand are a couple quarts of 10-30. It was definitely an emergency, so I fancied a funnel from a plastic bottle and added (mostly... dripage and resulting manifold smoke) a quart to the tranny. That got us further up hill a bit, though while watching gages and such I missed a turn and we were too far up hill when the tranny called it quits again. BUT, we were now high enough for a cell signal and got a call into AAA for a tow -- we were a long way from anywhere, and the likelihood of anyone coming by was nil.

Second quart of motor oil into the tranny - nervous about the flashpoint, but more nervous about being stuck for the night with my 77-year old mom in the middle of nowhere - and got back down to the turn that would eventually get us to Hwy 14 and Shell. So we coasted for 18 miles, with occasional engine power to barely get over a rise, down to the highway where we met a tow truck. So its legal to ride in a towed vehicle on a flatbed in Wyoming... who knew - interesting 120 mile ride through Shell Canyon back to Sheridan and eventually to Buffalo. Dudes at the Car Clinic in Buffalo pushed me to the front of the line, and got the necessary parts from Billings (while I puked my way through food poisoning... sheesh), to get us back on the road home by Tuesday afternoon... what an adventure.
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  #40  
Old March 24th, 2016, 18:33
in4aride in4aride is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

man that sounds like a nightmare trip. i imagine it was an interesting ride up there on the deck
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  #41  
Old March 24th, 2016, 19:46
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YELLAHEEP YELLAHEEP is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Good lord Chris! You're not making much of a case to own a Dakota........ sorry to hear your troubles.
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  #42  
Old March 24th, 2016, 21:01
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Meh - buy a 15 year old vehicle with 170k on it, ya expect some problems. Still saving compared to the monthly payment on the Titan... Plus, the pure adventure of not knowing what breaks next . I'll have it near new before long. I could have done without the food poisoning though.
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  #43  
Old March 24th, 2016, 22:18
Buckshot62 Buckshot62 is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

Thanks again for delivering my mount .It was good to meet you and your family Chris. Sorry to hear about all of your troubles. Maybe someday we can wheel in the Bighorns together.
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  #44  
Old March 24th, 2016, 22:29
xj-grin xj-grin is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

My pleasure, Wes, and thanks again for the beers. If you haven't been to that Medicine Lodge Archeological site, you should check it out - very cool.
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  #45  
Old March 24th, 2016, 22:39
Buckshot62 Buckshot62 is offline
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Re: Grin's Dakota QuadCab

We need to check it out one day. The more I see and explore the more I realize how much I haven't seen and explored. Always talking to the guys I work with and finding local spots that only locals know about. Have you explored Crazy woman canyon ? Doesn't take long but a nice drive and dispersed camping. We camped there late one spring and the waterfall we camped next to was so loud we couldn't sleep ! Work with a guy from Deadwood/Lead that has sent us to some amazing places just outside of Deadwood. Man I need to get out more !!
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