The 1989 Dodge Ram D50 4G63 Turbo Engine Swap.

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The 1989 Dodge Ram D50 4G63 Turbo Engine Swap.

Post by 4g63mightymax » Sat Mar 18, 2006 5:44 pm

Lets face it, everybody has a daily driver that isn't an award winning show car or race car, it just gets you from point A to point B. This is mine. It is a 1989 Dodge Ram D-50 Macro Cab Truck that will soon have a 200 hp Mitsubishi Eclipse 2.0L DOHC 4G63 engine in it. This is actually the second time I have done this kind of engine swap, so it it should go pretty smoothly. I will document the progress as it is made and I am hoping to be done by May 6th 2006. Don't ask why, it just seems like a nice date. Oh, also keep in mind I don't have a 10,000,000 square foot garage like the guys on TV and it is cold in New England. So let's get this started.....

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The Left Front View
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The Right Front View
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The Right Rear View
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The internal engine parts hanging out the side of the original engine block.

Now, the factory engine is probably somewhere in the 100 horsepower range, and I intend on doubling that with the new engine, and eventually tripling it. It should make a fun daily driver.......
More to come..

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The turbo 4g63 engine.

Post by 4g63mightymax » Sun Mar 26, 2006 8:04 pm

Well, here is the engine that will be going into the truck. It is a 1991 2.0L DOHC, turbocharged, fuel injected, Mitsubishi Eclipse 4G63 engine. You can see that I made a coolant pipe that attaches to the valve cover and takes the antifreeze from the radiator to the thermostat housing. The pictures also shows the rear wheel drive transmission bolted to the engine where an AWD transmission once was. The transmission is out of a late 1980's 2.0L? Dodge Ram D50 pickup truck. It will most likely not be able to handle the power I will feed it, so I have full intentions of exploding it, as many others have. The clutch is a stock D50 clutch that I am hoping will last a little while until I can figure out something better. I have heard rumors of using RX-7 transmissions and Mazda B2200 bellhousings, ACT clutches, etc. However, I am not at the point where I need to worry about that since the engine isn't even in the truck yet. Ok Ok, enough talk, on to the pictures.....
Here is the front view of the engine with a half taken apart turbo, no power anything, just a waterpump and alternator. You may also notice that I am using the D50 truck waterpump (slightly modified) because the Eclipse waterpump wouldn't allow you to take the antifreeze from the front of the engine. It dumped it out at the back.
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Here is one view of the waterpipe I made, based off of the original Eclipse pipe that used to run under the turbo...Moving antifreeze from the front of the motor to the back is a common problem for rear wheel drive 4G63 engine swappers, this is one way of doing it.
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Another view.
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This is the rear of the engine. You can see that the engine has a giant thermostat housing on the back of the head. The original truck engine doesn't have that, which means you have two choices when mounting this in a truck.
1) You can cut a hole in the firewall and move the firewall back about 3-4 inches, removing your heater box in the process....
2) You make new motor mounts to move the engine 3-4 inches forward, extend your driveshaft and modify your shifter. This is the method that I chose for this truck for several reasons. My 1990 4G63 Mightymax that I built a few years ago was done with option #1, and I was never happy with how it turned out. My "doing things the right way" problem eventually got to me and let to that trucks demise. So this truck will be done so that I am happy with the final results, whether it is more work or not. Anywho, here is the picture.
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Another common problem for the rear wheel drive Eclipse engine swap people is the intake manifold. There are a lot of options for this as well. Everything from buying a nice aftermarket intake, to making it yourself, to modifying the original. I chose to reuse my original intake that I had modified for my first 4g63 project.
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So that is where I am at for now, I will post the engine install pictures in the next day or two....it isn't pretty, but it is under the hood...
-HRCS

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Mon Mar 27, 2006 10:55 pm

The engine has finally arrived to it's new home....sorta. I hadn't made the engine mounts yet, but I came across a great opportunity to pull the junk 2.6L engine out of the truck and get the 4g63 in. With the cylinder head off the 2.6L (which took a whopping 50 minutes) it took about an hour to get the engine/transmission combination out of the truck.
The junk-o-2.6L
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A little twisting, a little shouting, and Badabing, Its out!
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Here you can see the empty engine bay. Plenty of room for a Twin Turbo fuel injected 426 Crate Hemi or maybe even a 2.0L 4 cylinder. Let's start with 4 cylinders and see what happens....shall we?
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This is where it got tricky. The stock motor mounts do bolt the block to the frame, but as I said before, it will make the thermostat housing hit the firewall. So....I am making some custom motor mounts to move the engine forward, but more on that later...
In goes the engine, to rest on some wood until the motor mounts are done. Hopefully just a day or two...
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Well, there you see it. The engine is in the engine bay. The engine mounts should be done in the next couple days, then I will make the new transmission mount, and start the plumbing and wiring. Wiring is the part that I thought was very tough on my first mightymax project. Yes I was young and stupid, don't mind that terrible photography, run on sentences, and everything else that looks disgraceful. Unfortunately that page still exists and I don't have the power to edit it, so there it sits in D50 / Mightymax internet history.
Anwyho, the wiring should be easier this time around, and I will be sure to add more as it progresses.
-HRCS
Last edited by 4g63mightymax on Fri Apr 14, 2006 8:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Guest

Post by Guest » Tue Mar 28, 2006 10:14 pm

Looks good so far, and I love that connecting rod from the old motor. Thats pretty sweet. 50's this week and rain for the weekend. However, we do change the clocks which means more after work daylight. She should be done in no time.

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Tue Mar 28, 2006 11:38 pm

Thank! I am definitely looking forward to staying outside later next week to get some stuff accomplished. One motor mount is officially done on the truck, the other one will be done tomorrow if I can find the time. I just gotta finish the welding and paint it. Once they are all done, I will take some pictures to help any other people that want to do this....I can't believe how smoothly this is going so far. Hopefully my good luck continues.

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Fri Apr 14, 2006 8:48 pm

I have made quite a bit of progress in the last two weeks with the truck. I got the engine bolted down to the custom motor mounts, and almost finished the wiring.
I am not 100% happy with the motor mounts, but they will do for now. I think at some point I will most likely switch the mounts to a different style. We shall see....Here are a couple pictures:
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You can see that it has a 3/8ish steel plate welded to the modified factory mount. Thus, moving the engine forward about 3 or 4 inches.
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The wiring went a lot smoother now that I have some idea of what the heck I am doing. My last truck was far more complicated because I had never attempted any major wiring before, and just jumped into it. Anywho, this time around, I unplugged the truck's engine harness and basically replaced it with the harness from the Eclipse. It took several hours of cutting and splicing to get it just right. I removed any unused or unnecessary wiring, then soldered, shrink wrapped, and taped it all together so that I can wrap it easily with wire loom when I am ready. I am confident that it will work first try. The pictures were before I was done, so it actually is a bit neater at this time.
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The Eclipse ECU really only needs a couple of truck wires to make it work. Basically power and ground. It is more or less it's own system, separate from the truck.
I also bought a TD05H / 14B turbo off ebay and an external Walbro 255 fuel pump. I realize the turbo isn't the biggest one in the world, but it is a low mileage, clean turbo that will probably work consistantly for a while until I do something stupid. The fuel pump will be mounted to the inside of the frame and installed right in front of the fuel tank. Apparently the closer to the tank the better. So for now, that is where I am at. Next week I will be able to install the pump and take apart the turbo. You will understand why once I do it. It is really quite simple. Now go get something accomplished will ya! Oh and post your projects! I want to see them!

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Sun Apr 23, 2006 10:19 am

My latest project was mounting, wiring, and plumbing the external fuel pump. I started off with a walbro 255 external pump. I decided that it would be best on the inside of the left frame rail in front of the gas tank. I started by disconnecting the mounts that hold the fuel and brake lines in place. While doing this I realize that my brake lines were replaced at some point by somebody that had probably never done it before (not to mention they were leaking). I will be redoing the brake lines when I get to that point. Anywho, once the lines were all separated, I cut a section of the original fuel line out and expected to run braided rubber hose from the pump to the OE metal fuel lines. I began doing this and realize that this is a high pressure pump, and if I build the fuel system this way, I am asking for fuel leaks. This meant I had to stop where I was and figure out a better way. My better way was to completely remove the whole front section of fuel line and replace it with -6 AN braided hose. This way, I could run one direct line straight from the pump to the fuel rail. No sketchy clamps and mickey mouse connections. Here are some pictures to explain a little bit better.

To start off, these are my terrible looking brake lines that I need to replace. Seriously, do your brakes right if you need to fix them, they are the only thing stopping you. If you can't do them right, it is worth paying somebody that can.
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Here we have the spot where I decided to mount the external walbro 255. I removed the brake/fuel line brackets and figured out where I liked it by holding it in place and marking where to drill the mounting holes.
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This picture is showing the mounting holes that I drilled out and tapped so that I could thread in a bolt without having a nut on the back side. It really worked out great, and wasn't hard to do.
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This is what the pump looked like when it was bolted to the frame. You can still see the factory fuel lines at the front and rear of the picture. The front line was removed shortly after this picture was taken.
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So I am slowly but surely making progress working towards my May 6th goal. I am not sure if I will make it or not, but I am sure going to try. I will have some finished and wired fuel pump pictures in the next day or so. Until then, I will be outside building things.

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Sun Apr 30, 2006 10:10 pm

I am officially a week away from my project completion date. It is looking like my engine will be in there and completely ready to go, however, I don't think my driveshaft will be done by then. I am still waiting for my intercooler, the rubber couplings, and my oil lines to show up, so I am at a standstill until then. I guess we will wait and see what the week brings. The good news is that I did start the engine without the turbo on it, and it seemed to run pretty good. However, it was really loud and I couldnt hear myself think.....
Since I dont have any other news I will start a tally of costs. It will show everything that I have spent on the truck so far. Hopefully I won't miss anything. Here we go:

1) 1989 Dodge Ram D50 Truck w/ Dead engine - $100
2) Transporting the truck from the opposite end of my state ~$50 (gas)
3) Food for me and my friend that helped me move the truck ~ $15
4) 4G63 Engine - Free, it was leftover from a previous project.
5) New timing belt hydraulic tensioner - $87.83
6) New timing belt - $39.99
7) New NGK Spark Plugs - $10.16
Misc wires, fittings -~$30
9) Gasket making material, 4 bolts, 4 nuts, 4 washers - $13.79
10) 12 x 18 x 3 Intercooler -$116.98
11) External Walbro 255 fuel pump -$120
12) Used 50k mile 14b turbo - $153
13) -6 Braided fuel line + fuel rail fitting - $84.22
14) Rubber intercooler couplers ~ $65.20
15) Black wire loom - $9

Total so far = $895.07

That is all I can come up with so far. I will add to it as I spend more. Chances are good that if you noticed I missed something major, I already had it laying around.

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Wiring 101, where to start?

Post by 4g63mightymax » Tue May 02, 2006 8:57 pm

Wiring a fuel injected vehicle can be overwhelming. The key to letting it not overwhelm you is to focus on a little bit at a time. I have found that this works for almost all major projects. Wiring can be made easy when you break it down to what it is. You are basically just sending power and ground to different areas of the engine to make things work. Since most people that do this engine swap start off with a 90-94 Eclipse engine harness, most of the hard work is already done for you.
The first step is to learn what all of the sensors and stuff does and what actually needs to be hooked up. I will start with the basics and work from there.

Things you need to make it run correctly (based off a 1991-94 Eclipse / Talon / Laser engine harness, 4g63T engine):

1) Throttle Position Sensor (TPS) - 3 wires. Located on the side of the throttle body. It tells the computer what your throttle plate is doing.

2) Idle Speed Control motor (ISC or IAC - Idle Air Control) - 6 wires. Located on the bottom of the throttle body. It opens and closes an air passage and makes your engine idle correctly.

3) Knock Sensor (a.k.a detonation sensor) - 2 wires. Located under your intake manifold, screwed into the engine block. This listens to your engine and if it detects any knock / detonation, it will tell the computer to retard the ignition timing to reduce the knock counts.

4) O2 Sensor - 4 wires. Located in the cast iron O2 housing on the side of the turbocharger. This measures Oxygen in the exhaust stream. It does this so that the computer can make sure the engine has the correct air/fuel mixture. If it is faulty, the computer will automatically go full rich with the engine. It knows that it is safer to be running rich than lean.

5) Mass Airflow Sensor (MAF) - 7 wires. Located inside your air filter box, remove the air filter, and you will see it. This sensor measures how much air is going into your engine. It detects air temperature and the speed that the air is traveling. Often times, these engines will inhale more air than the stock MAF can handle, thus, overrunning your MAF, and causing the ecu to cut fuel.

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6) Crank Angle Sensor (CAS) - 4 wires. Located on the rear left side of the cylinder head. This is what you would rotate to adjust ignition timing, just like a distributor on an older car. It sends signals telling the computer where the crankshaft (and camshafts) are in their rotation. This helps determine when to fire spark plugs.

7) Power Transistor - 7 Wires. Located under on the drivers side front of the engine, screwed into the intake manifold. This interprets the computer / CAS signals and tells your coil to send spark out.

8) Ignition Coil - 3 regular wires + 4 spark plug wires. Located towards the front of the engine tucked into the intake manifold. This is the device that sparks your spark plugs. Exciting isn't it?

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9) Injector Resistor Pack - 5 wires. This is the metal covered white block that was originally mounted to the vehicle's firewall. Different injectors need different amounts of resistance to make them work correctly. This is the resistor pack that makes sure your injectors and computer are receiving consistant pulses and not getting overworked/overheated.

10) Injectors - 2 wires per injector, 8 wires total. Located under the fuel rail between your intake manifold and the valve cover. These squirt the fuel into your engine. Simple enough.

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11) Fuel Pump (FP) - 2 wires. This is located in the fuel tank of the Eclipses / Talons / Lasers, attached to the sending unit. This sends fuel to the fuel rail providing the injectors with the much needed fuel.

12) Coolant Temperature Sensor - 2 wires. This is located in the thermostat housing on the rear of the cylinder head. This tells the computer the engine temperature which is important if you want it to run smoothly in all temperatures.

13) Coolant Temperature Switch - 2 wires. This is located in the theromstat housing on the rear of the cylinder head. This tells your fans to turn on and off with the engine temperature.

14) The Engine Computer Unit (ECU) - 52 wires. This is the brain that makes your engine run. In determines all the engines variables and makes it run. If you do not give it all the variables it needs, it will not run correctly. These are known for burning capacitors on their circuit boards, causing the engine to surge, or not run at all. It is best to have the capacitors replaced before they go bad, because they can destroy the whole circuit board making it into nothing more than a nice conversation piece.

I will try and take pictures of all of these items, show you how easily I wired everything, and even get a little more in depth with it all. It was really much easier than I originally thought. Until nextime......Feel free to post any questions you may have.

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Fri May 12, 2006 8:14 pm

Recently, the biggest holdup has been waiting for parts to arrive. My oil lines were ordered almost a month ago and I should have them tomorrow if they are waiting at the post office for me. The good news is that I got my intercooler and some u-bends, made a throttle body spacer, and got some stuff accomplished!
My intercooler is an eBay special 18x12x3. I got it this size because I figured that it would make it easier to run the intercooler piping. I also wouldnt need to hack out big sections of my radiator or bumper support to get it in there. In fact, I only drilled 2 3/8" holes to mount my intercooler. Everything is just like it was from the factory. I didnt cut out the hood hinge support or anything. I just made one "L" shaped brace at the top, and a couple of aluminum spacers at the bottom, and bolted it in. Here is a picture of the intercooler with 1 spacer attached to it:

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I also bought a few U-Bends on ebay (from "ubendman", great service!!!) to make the intercooler piping with. They are mandrel bent 2.25" steel pipes. I don't have any way of welding aluminum, so that is why I went with steel.

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The rubber couplers are a pretty high quality, so they cost a pretty penny, but they should hold up pretty well. I wish they were black, but ah well, I forgot to say that when I ordered them.

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BADASS!!!!

I will add more tomorrow. It is friday night and time to go out...

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Sun May 28, 2006 12:28 pm

The 3 Inch exhaust is on, complete with a 3 inch magnaflow muffler, and 3 inch universal catalytic converter. I also finished a long overdue project of modifying my transmission mount. The exhaust was pretty easy.
I bought:
1) A 3" straight through magnaflow muffler off ebay
2) 10 Feet of 3" straight pipe from the local auto parts store
3) A universal catalytic converter, because I still have to pass emissions
4) 3 mandrel bent U-Bends off ebay from "ubendman".
I cut and welded it piece by piece from the front of the truck, all the way to the back. The back was the toughest part because I made it go up and over the rear end. I made it very close to the bed floor because I will be lowering this truck eventually and didnt want the exhaust to get in the way of the axle. Here are a couple pictures to show you what I did.
The mandrel U-bends
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The straight through magnaflow muffler with the mid cat-muffler pipe welded on.
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The catalytic converter right under the passenger side floor.
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The post muffler tail section of pipe. I know it looks a little rusty under there, but it really isnt as bad as it looks.
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My nice 3" exhaust tip
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I had went from rusty stock exhaust to full 3" exhaust on my all wheel drive 1990 mitsubishi eclipse that I used to own, and it made a world of difference. That is what convinced me to not mess around and go right to 3 inch this time. Bigger exhaust really allows the turbo to breath properly. In a perfect turbo world, it would have no exhaust system at all, but the police don't appreciate that, and neither would your neighbors. The turbo itself provides the mysterious "back pressure" that everybody swears your engine needs to run properly. I will explain backpressure at a different date, until then you will just have to trust me.

The other project was the transmission mount. Since I moved my engine forward about 3 - 3.5 inches, the transmission mount needed to move the same amount. I had been putting this project off for a while, assuming it was going to be difficult, but it was really quite easy. I basically just cut the mount off the transmission crossmember (which unbolts from the truck with 12 bolts) and stretched it out. A picture is worth a thousand words....
Here is the transmission crossmember, very dirty...
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I cut the original transmission mount off and welded a 3 inch piece of steel plate in its place.
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Then I welded the original mount to my piece of steel plate, thus, moving the transmission mount about 3 inches forward. I probably could have gone with a 3.25 or 3.5 inch steel plate, but 3 inches will work fine.
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Lastly, here is my most recent underhood picture.
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You can see a few more things are hooked up. The engine is full of antifreeze and doesnt seem to leak. The temperature gauge works, which is nice to see....and yes, the MAF is taped together, that part isnt done yet. There are only a few things left to do before this truck is driveable.
1) Hook up the wastegate actuator, not sure of how i will do that yet....
2) Get my drive shaft lengthened
3) Get a thin electric fan for my radiator, because the one I have is too thick.
4) Paint my intercooler piping
5) Attach my shifter
6) Possibly attach my nice new oil feed line, if it ever arrives...
7) work out any bugs that it may have once I begin driving it.

Sounds easy......I will keep you updated.

Guest

Post by Guest » Wed Jun 07, 2006 11:01 pm

Looks good, I can agree with you on the turbo back pressure. There's a ton of pressure and heat before going into the exhaust impeller when under boost. The exhaust flow really pushes out hard of the 3" exhaust I have on there, and it sounds great.

Guest

Post by Guest » Thu Jun 08, 2006 6:40 pm

Thanks for the response, for some reason, people are afraid to make posts in here. No idea why. Anywho, the latest on the truck is this:

I ordered a radiator fan that I think is going to work perfectly. It is 16x6x3 and is fully reversable. It is supposed to arrive tomorrow, so I will be able to install it this weekend. I also found a driveshaft shop, but they aren't open during the weekend. So I have to wait until next week to go get that chopped up. Other than that, all that I have left is to hook up my wastegate actuator. I have just been putting off, because it isn't going to be easy. Hopefully I will have some time this weekend.
Does anybody else have a project they want to show off? Seriously people, don't be scared.

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Post by 4g63mightymax » Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:18 am

GREAT NEWS!
My driveshaft is officially complete and I drove the truck around my driveway for the first time last night. It is going to be very fun, just like I remember on my last truck. I have to button up a few things to make it streetable, but it drives!
The front section of driveshaft was extended 3 inches to work with the engine / transmission that I moved about 3 inches forward. I replaced my carrier bearing because my original one was 100% crap. It cost about $100 new from an aftermarket company. I also replaced all three universal joints for $11 each.

I will have more pictures shortly.

-HRCS

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Truck Looks great!!

Post by Guest » Tue Aug 08, 2006 3:26 pm

Hey,

Just read through, and I must admit, that truck sounds awesome! Any plans on a bigger 16g, E16g, or a 20g?


Why did you maintain your carrier bearings? Wouldn't it have made more sense to have a single piece aluminum driveshaft?




JT

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