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Considering a 4x4 ram

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by dakota1820, Sep 16, 2020.

  1. dakota1820

    dakota1820 Member

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    I have owned a '95 Dodge ram for the past 8 years it was my grandfather's truck and he bought it new when he passed away my uncle got it and then I got it after that my uncle did quite a number on it. It has been a good truck reliability wise has the 360 v8.
    The downfall has been the rust and the interior just falling apart. The bed now has holes in it and I had to replace the front cab mounts which was not a fun job. All of this being said it is the only ram I've ever had. I am considering buying a 4x4 ram I'm looking to spend four grand or a little less. I understand it won't be in perfect condition but I do want a 4x4 since we're buying a boat and I'd like to do a little bit of Wheeling with it as well. If memory serves me right they have a solid for an axle? Any issues with that? I know that both Ford and GM of these years are different variations of IFS. I have owned a 4x4 Ford truck with the twin traction beam suspension and I never had any issues with it but I do recall it dragging the front pumpkin a lot off-road. I also have had a 90 k 1500 and it had more ground clearance it seemed like than the Ford but I only had that truck about eight months and sold it and when I sold it the front differential was making noise so I don't know if these are reliable and I just got one that was wore out and done or if they had a lot of issues. So how do you guys like your solid axle by comparison to the other offerings and what should I watch out for? I've heard the transmissions are kind of weak however mine is original in my ram with 188,000 mi on it and shifts fine. I look forward to hearing from you guys and getting your input. Thanks everyone.
     
  2. MoPowered

    MoPowered Retired Military

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    I would think about taking that 4K and investing it into you current rig, If it’s as reliable as you say it is you can purchase sheet metal and interior parts and go from there, you know what you have with your current truck. Any truck selling for 4K isn’t gonna be worth much and you’ll probably wind up putting more money into it as the price of used vehicle’s especially trucks have really surged recently.
     
  3. dakota1820

    dakota1820 Member

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    My truck is only a 2wd it will struggle doing what I want to do boating nest spring on the river, gravel bars ect and I'd like to do some wheeling. You can do ok around here for 4k I can fix things so if they need some work it's no big deal. My last truck was a 92 c1500 paid 1800 had 160,000 miles on it. I owned it about a year and just got bored of it.
     
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  4. Tim7139

    Tim7139 Senior Member

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  5. dakota1820

    dakota1820 Member

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  6. Tim7139

    Tim7139 Senior Member

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    3rd gen is not quite as good at low speed rock crawling, but is more responsive when traveling down the the road or trails. In an emergency maneuver like avoiding Bambi's cousins the stiffer frame and IFS is a night and day improvement. Much more enjoyable on the highway in general.

    3rd gen has more than can break if you're pounding on it, but that stuff is tucked up more getting you additional ground clearance helping you keep that from happening.

    These guys reviews the leap forward in on road manners .http://www.autos.ca/car-test-drives/2002-dodge-ram-1500-quad-cab-4x4-slt/

    Motortrends reported RAM designed the third gen to last 50% longer than the second gen. http://www.trucktrend.com/truck-reviews/112-0102-2002-dodge-ram/
     
  7. ViolentMouse

    ViolentMouse Member

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    You can get a solid axle third gen.

    The Megacab 1500 4x4 is a solid axle.

    With the 3rd gen IFS there are three things you need to be aware of.
    1.) where the half shafts go into the axles the stub shafts are prone to rusting and can fail of not maintained regularly. Suggest seasonal removal for rust removal and greasing +new seals.
    2.) The center carrier housing is fixed in place. with a solid axle setup when a wheel lifts the pumpkin moves... with IFS it stays with the truck. if you catch a rock with it... it has no give and it's made of aluminum.
    3.) gearing options for the IFS are VERY limited.

    If you put a lift kit on a 3rd gen, most of them achieve lift without sacrificing half shaft angle by keeping the front differential in the same position relative to the wheel bearings... this means the truck goes up, but the pumpkin only goes up if you put bigger tires on it.

    As far as low speed rock crawling the ride is much better with IFS but you cannot hit the heavy angles and you MUST keep the wheels straight if you are going to nail the throttle... the CV shafts will let go. But that being said I have put the stock CV joints and axles well beyond the test more times than I can count. I have made entire groups of jeeps pack up and leave lol.

    Nothing makes the jeep crowd cringe more than seeing a full size truck make short work of a "very technical" jeep course.
     
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  8. MoPowered

    MoPowered Retired Military

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    4K here in NY is what I spend every year getting the road salt off my vehicles, lol. Didn’t catch it first that the truck was 2wd . If you can find a good buy for 4K then by all means do it. I’m partial to a live axle up front, had an 86 Ramcharger and a 99 1500. Currently I own a 12 PW, a second gen or 2500 would be you’re best bet if that’s what your looking to do. Good luck
     

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