Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board - Reply to Topic
Hotrodders.com -- Hot Rod Forum



Register FAQ Search Today's Posts Unanswered Posts Auto Escrow Insurance Auto Loans
Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board > Tech Help> Hotrodding Basics> 1949 Dodge five window truck frame swap
User Name
Password
lost password?   |   register now

Thread: 1949 Dodge five window truck frame swap Reply to Thread
Title:
  
Message:
Trackback:
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name (usually not your first and last name), your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

Topic Review (Newest First)
10-28-2010 12:07 PM
techinspector1
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1ownerT
All 2wd generations of the Dakota were/are coil spring front suspension.
Thanks, you're correct.
I was talking on another forum about swapping a 455 Olds into a Chevy Luv truck. The Luv was torsion bars. I'm older now and get confused easily.
10-28-2010 07:08 AM
1ownerT
Quote:
Originally Posted by techinspector1
You have the measurements of the front and rear track on your truck. Use those measurements to find a suitable donor car or truck. The wheelbase of the donor will not matter. We're going to use only the front and rear clips out of the donor. Ford Junkie was thinkin' Chrysler. Take a look at the Dodge Dakota pickup. The Gen I Dakota (narrower track than the Gen II truck) was made from '87 to '96 and the '91 to '96 used a 318 V8 as an option, so everything would be set up for the "A" motor of your choice, 273, 318, 340 or 360. There will be no need to fabricate motor mounts or moving the motor to the passenger side to miss the steering or any of the other contortions usually associated with a frame/clip swap that isn't well thought out beforehand. Of course, once you have your hands on a 360, a 408 stroker kit is only a phone call away.

Now, here is where most guys mess up on a clip swap. They fail to secure the suspension at ride height before welding the clip to the center frame portion. In other words, with weight on the suspension, the control arms are at a certain angle compared to the ground. For instance, if you get up under a Dakota that is complete and running around on the street and put an angle finder on the bottom control arm, you might find that it is level with the ground. But once you cut the clip off the front of the Dakota, there is no weight on the torsion bar and the lower control arm is no longer level with the ground. So, what you want to do is lay an angle finder on the lower control arm of a running, driving example of the donor you will use. You will also want to record the angle of another part of the front clip on the actual frame member front to rear, so that you can repeat that angle when welding your donor clip onto the recipient frame that lays under the cab. If you don't get the front to rear angle of the donor frame correct, the angle of the motor will not be correct. Record those angles. You will use it to set up your front clip by making a fixture to hold the suspension at the angle you recorded. When you do it this way, the front suspension is at ride height when you get done. You will put the centerline of the front spindle at the height off the pad that you want for whatever tire you want to use, for instance 14 inches for a 28 inch tire.
All 2wd generations of the Dakota were/are coil spring front suspension.
10-28-2010 03:54 AM
Miley Tipton hi everyone, can anyone please tell me, why 2005 dodge stratus give soooo many problems, its actually become a trouble for me, Does this problem comes since 1969 Dodge, or specially arisen in my 2005 Dodge....
10-18-2010 01:41 PM
custer_h
Thanks Brian and Tech!

There's definitely a lot more to frame swapping than I had thought. Thanks for taking the time to write your responses! It's guys like you that make this bulletin board so valuable. Looks like I have a good bit more studying to do!
10-17-2010 08:24 PM
techinspector1 Brian, I agree with you 100%. And perhaps I come off with some of my explanations in a "cavalier" manner, because like you said, I have been there, done that......many times. Thank you for your reply.
10-17-2010 08:03 PM
MARTINSR Tech, I don't recommend frame swaps, not because I can't do them, but the average person who is asking can't do them! Now, what you describe is NOT a "frame swap", it's a "frame clip". A front and rear frame clip, that is miles from the "frame swap" that I am on a one man crusade to end in the rodding world.

The frame clip is a way to go, I am not fond of it for a few reasons, not because they are so hard for ME or a guy like yourself who has a high amount of fabrication skills. One reason I am not fond of it is because it DOES take a tremendous amount of skill compared to a bolt on kit. I know exactly how to do it, I have done it right down to the angle finder on the control arm and your explanation is a good one but is your average rodder asking about frame swaps going to be able to grasp what you have laid out, not on your life!

This is the funny thing about most guys who ask questions like that, you or I would never ask the question, we would just DO IT because we have the skills. I don't know about this original poster,but MOST of the frame swap questions I see are from guys who are looking for the magic bullet. They are the same people who ask me at the shop "You mean you just can't pop out the dent"? They are asking about a "swap" this means unbolt and bolt in a new frame like putting a small block Chevy where a big block was, that is what they are asking.

The actual welding of the frame clip onto your old frame is just a small part of the job just as making the motor mounts are in an engine swap. It is all the dozens of other things that make it tough. And every swap is different. Knowing how to set up and measure out the frame to weld it on is going to remain pretty similar, but the rad support, the inner fenders the bumper brackets that is where the real time often gets spent, and a LOT of fabrication skills are needed.

I wouldn't think a thing about chopping the top or sectioning the body ANY car. I am a pro and have done many of them. I could chop a friggin 2007 Escalade and not think a thing of it, but I sure wouldn't tell a newbe to do it!

If someone really wants to do it you have laid out a great overview on how to pull it off successfully. As I was reading it I thought about how many guys I have worked with who repaired cars for a living who couldn't have pull it off! I know one thing, if a guy reads what you wrote and it makes sense then he is ready for the challenge.

As long as the guy who is going for it has gotten all sides and makes a good decision with the understanding of what it takes and knowing HE can do it then cool.

Brian
10-17-2010 07:08 PM
techinspector1 Well, someone has to be the lone voice in the wilderness calling out for a frame swap. The problems that people tell you about are brought on by their lack of knowledge of how to do it cleanly and effectively.

First of all, you need a flat, level working area. The garage floor is not level. What I have done in the past is to shim up the difference with 3" x 3" or 4" x 4" pieces of thin wood glued together. I started at the highest point of the garage with no shims and shimmed taller and taller as I went downhill. These stacks of wood shims were placed about 6" apart and glued to the garage floor. When I had an area large enough to work off of, I laid 1" particle board down over the shim stacks. Three boards were used to make the working pad 7 ft. x 12 ft. Each board was 7 x 4 because I cut off a foot from the end of each of the boards. When I was through, I had a working pad that was within 1/16" of being flat and level from one corner to the other. At the low end of the garage, the shim stacks were 2 3/4" tall. This is not a costly operation. You need a 48" level, a couple of door skins, some 1 x 2 or 1 x 3 material, some 2 x 4's, some wood glue and three 1" pieces of particle board. Less than a hundred dollars can build a pretty nice flat board.
Going from one stack to the next stack, lay the end of your level on the last stack you glued down. Under the other end of your level, build your stack to come up to the underside of the level. Now, build all the stacks in between to come up to the underside of the level. I'm probably making this sound more difficult than it is.

In my opinion, the way to do it is to remove the cab from the original frame, clean everything up and install new frame biscuits between the cab and frame. Move the truck onto the building pad. Make sure the front wheels are sitting straight ahead. Measure the front track and the rear track and write down the measurements. This is the measurement from the middle of the tire on one side of the truck to the middle of the tire on the other side of the truck. Once you have the front and rear tracks written down, remove the wheels and tires. Drop the body to the ride height that you want when finished and insert jackstands under the frame at each corner of the cab. This is where you decide what the finished product will look like, whether you want it at stock ride height or dropped a little in the front or dropped a little in the rear or dropped a little front and rear but sitting level or whatever. Drop a plumb bob line from the center of each front spindle to the pad surface and make a mark (that's what's nice about having a particle board surface to work from, you just make your marks with a carpenter's pencil). Now go to the rear and drop a line from the center of the rear axle and make your marks on the pad. Use your tape measure to measure corner to corner each way diagonally to make sure you have a rectangle. If not, move your front marks to make it a rectangle, not a rhomboid. This is where we will correct any tweaking that has been done to the frame in the past. We will have "square" frame marks on the pad to construct the new front and rear clips when the project is done so the truck does not "dogleg" down the road. Draw a line between the rear X's. Draw a line between the front X's. Draw a line between the front and rear X's on each side. Measure again to make sure you have a rectangle. All further measurements will be taken from this box you have drawn on the pad.

Make up a sturdy fixture from 1" square tubing that will bolt to fender mounting holes in the cab and will locate the hood latch. You'll want to bolt this locating fixture back onto the truck when you are trying to locate the hood latch on the new front clip core support.

Cut off the front clip of the old frame, leaving about a foot of material in front of the firewall. Same at the rear, cut off the frame leaving about a foot behind the cab.

Now, you have to determine what donor you're going to use. You're going to use the front and rear clips from something. The Chevy Blazer will be too wide. You want to use a donor that has a front and rear track that is close to the Dodge to keep the project from looking like some hillbilly did it. While it is true that you can use different wheels with different backset to move the tires in or out, I consider it a cleaner job to get it right with the stock donor parts, then you don't have to spend money for different wheels.

You have the measurements of the front and rear track on your truck. Use those measurements to find a suitable donor car or truck. The wheelbase of the donor will not matter. We're going to use only the front and rear clips out of the donor. Ford Junkie was thinkin' Chrysler. Take a look at the Dodge Dakota pickup. The Gen I Dakota (narrower track than the Gen II truck) was made from '87 to '96 and the '91 to '96 used a 318 V8 as an option, so everything would be set up for the "A" motor of your choice, 273, 318, 340 or 360. There will be no need to fabricate motor mounts or moving the motor to the passenger side to miss the steering or any of the other contortions usually associated with a frame/clip swap that isn't well thought out beforehand. Of course, once you have your hands on a 360, a 408 stroker kit is only a phone call away.

Now, here is where most guys mess up on a clip swap. They fail to secure the suspension at ride height before welding the clip to the center frame portion. In other words, with weight on the suspension, the control arms are at a certain angle compared to the ground. For instance, if you get up under a Dakota that is complete and running around on the street and put an angle finder on the bottom control arm, you might find that it is level with the ground. But once you cut the clip off the front of the Dakota, there is no weight on the torsion bar and the lower control arm is no longer level with the ground. So, what you want to do is lay an angle finder on the lower control arm of a running, driving example of the donor you will use. You will also want to record the angle of another part of the front clip on the actual frame member front to rear, so that you can repeat that angle when welding your donor clip onto the recipient frame that lays under the cab. If you don't get the front to rear angle of the donor frame correct, the angle of the motor will not be correct. Record those angles. You will use it to set up your front clip by making a fixture to hold the suspension at the angle you recorded. When you do it this way, the front suspension is at ride height when you get done. You will put the centerline of the front spindle at the height off the pad that you want for whatever tire you want to use, for instance 14 inches for a 28 inch tire.

You will check for square by dropping a line from tip of the donor spindle to the pad. You may have to extend lines on the rectangle you drew on the pad. That's ok, that's what the rectangle is for, to have a base from which to extend lines to work from.

Here's a tutorial I wrote for the wiki concerning a Dakota swap into a '49 International.
http://www.crankshaftcoalition.com/wiki/Frame_swaps

The other choice I would look into would be a G body GM car, '78-'86 Monte Carlo, El Camino, Grand Prix, Cutlass.
10-17-2010 08:48 AM
timothale
frame swap ?

Some frame swaps are a piece of cake , most are not. A friend put his 49 merc on a monte carlo and said it was easy. We have a 48 jeepster that we put on a jeep FC (pug nose) frame, in the 80's It had a SBC, Od on the back of the T CASE. The frame contour was the same, just had to cut off the end of the truck frame and mount the rear bumper. 25 years later, The Jeep FC brakes needed rebuilt, locking hubs needed work. junior was looking at $ 600 in parts. Then we saw a 53 jeep pickup at a car show setting on a late 70's blazer, the guy said it was easy just a couple of angle iron brackets, longer bolts. We got a blazer , no engine but 8 good tires for $ 150. The 48 has a smaller engine compartment, originally a 4 cyl car. The engine had to go back 8 inches on the blazer frame, that meant modifying the engine brackets. new clutch linkage, drive shafts, e brake and steering mods, neither gas tank would fit, had to rework the rear seat floor area, relocate the shock mount crosmember. It would have been a lot easier to have put the chevy drive train under the Jeep FC frame, . The chevy frame is a lot stronger though.
10-16-2010 09:16 PM
custer_h
Treetops Dodge Body Swap

Originally I was planning to attempt to mount my 54 Town Panel body on an 88 Ramcharger frame. My reasoning at the time was not only was the original 54 transmission geared low, so was the rearend. The 318 engine from the Ramcharger, brake, and the front suspension were also stronger technologies. Despite replacing the kingpins and tightening the steering worm gears the old Dodge still wandered down the road. I also have heard that modifying the existing frame to accept the new technology is the beter way to go. I'm not completely convinced and am hungry for additional input!
07-10-2010 01:12 PM
Ford Junkie returned you PM.....been away from the puter.

Tony
07-06-2010 10:47 AM
MARTINSR A "frame swap" could also be called a "Money swap", "Time swap", or "work swap". It will swap money spent from one thing to another, time spent from one thing to another, and work spent from one thing to another. But it saves you NO money, NO time and NO work, PERIOD.

Modify the original frame with the MANY kits out there to do this and you will be money, time and work ahead. And when you are done you will have a 1949 Dodge truck instead of a 2000 Dodge truck with some other body screwed to it.

Brian
07-05-2010 08:47 PM
Ford Junkie Welcome.

This question comes up often and the standard best answer is to modify the original frame for what you want. The reasoning behind this answer is the fabrication of all the body mounts as well as getting it mounted to a newer frame so the stance is correct and looks right. Example"there is a 57 chevy around here that has some of the best fabrication and metal craftsmanship you will ever see mounting it to a 80's Cutlass frame. unfortunately when it was all done it sits about 6" too high and doesn't look right, looks like it should be a 4 wheel drive"

It is much simpler to graft a late model front frame clip to your existing frame if it has not been damaged to be un-usable or use a suspension and motor mount kit from one of the aftermarket manufacturers. There are various opinions on what pieces to use and why each feels they are the right pieces for the job. Being it's Dodge then I would be looking for a Chrysler sub-frame and a 340, 383 or something along those lines......... just me and my weird thinking.

HTH,
Tony
07-05-2010 08:33 PM
TreeTop
thanks

Not sure how all this post a message works, however I will try it. Hopefully we can find all our answers.
07-05-2010 07:10 PM
eloc431962 Welcome to the site, I don't know about the frame swap but someone here will.




Cole
07-05-2010 06:27 PM
TreeTop
1949 Dodge five window truck frame swap

I am a man that have been told that I was born in the wrong time. I love the old cars and styles. I bought and restored a 1949 Dodge truck 25 years ago. Since then my father drove this truck everyday and spun the main bearing. I would like to swap the frame. I have been told that a 1973 to 1987 Chevy Blazer and a S10 frame will work. I would like to use it as a daily driver. My plan is to keep the truck looking as original as possible. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:08 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
Copyright Hotrodders.com 1999 - 2012. All Rights Reserved.