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Custom Dodge Ram Performance Mods - Engine - 5.2 Liter V8 Discuss modifying your Dodge Ram with Performance Parts and Accessories!


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  #1  
Old 08-19-2012, 04:57 AM
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Default A Few Questions I Would Appreciate Some Help With...

I'm looking for some new ideas to create better horsepower for my '95 5.2L. Granted I'm reaching 220k miles, I've kept up on routine maintenance and still have impressive power. I've installed a flowmaster dual exhaust, swapped the clutch for a Luk Pro Gold, and did a complete top-end fuel system cleanse. I also plan on buying a cold air intake, but I'm not sure what kit is best. Other than that, I'm not sure what inexpensive options are out there, to maximize my performance.

I'm running projector headlights with LED tail lights & 3rd brake light. Upon installation, I noticed my turn signals only blink every 5-6 seconds. I've heard about 'Load Equalizers' but no parts supplier seems to understand what I need to fix the problem. Also, my bumper driving lights are brighter than my low-beam projector headlights. I was thinking a possible HID kit but not sure what application would suit my situation best...

Lastly, I am no longer able to lock/unlock my doors with the switches. When I use the switch, I can hear the motor moving, but the locks don't engage/disengage. Once in a great while, I'm lucky enough to get one of the locks to move with the switch. But that's only in a blue moon.

If anyone can help me out, or have any suggestions to any of these topics, I'd GREATLY appreciate the input.
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Old 08-19-2012, 06:29 AM
ArtNJr ArtNJr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ramboi92 View Post
I'm looking for some new ideas to create better horsepower for my '95 5.2L. Granted I'm reaching 220k miles, I've kept up on routine maintenance and still have impressive power.
1st question is what's your budget? There's really no sense in adding performance equip. to the engine with that many miles on it & if you can afford to rebuild it, there are a LOT of options. Including using 360 heads, but the larger combustion chambers lower the compression ratio so you'd need new pistons to raise it back up. But with that many miles on the engine you need new pistons anyway & probably @ least an .020" overbore.

Are there good shops in your area? Lucky for me, living in the heart of "NASCAR country" I can get a block align-bored / honed no problem, but you probably can too. And drop the heads off @ a professional shop to get them ported -- but not polished -- polishing is for top-end HP only & actually hurts low-end torque. There's more power (and fuel mileage) to be found in the cylinder heads than anywhere else.

Then you've got to consider the valvetrain -- the valve springs need to be replaced & you can go with roller rocker arms to reduce weight & friction in the valvetrain -- anything you can do to reduce weight & friction there gives you more power & fuel mileage both. Roller tappets (lifters) too, if you can afford 'em & there are a lot of cam choices (Lunati is really good for Mopar engines).

You can pull 600 HP out of a 318 if you go nuts with it & I'm sure you don't want to do that (or spend the $$$) but the point is there are a LOT of options available to you, depending on what you want to accomplish & what you're willing to spend to get it.
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Old 08-20-2012, 03:38 PM
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On the Magnum series, 318 and 360's use the same cyl heads. The quick and easy way is to get a low mileage, new or remanned 360 and drop it in. Then all you need is a computer upgrade or reprogramming. Keep in mind you get a fresh engine in there, your trans may not last long behind it.
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:08 PM
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+2 to everything HemiLonestar said.
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:27 PM
ArtNJr ArtNJr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HemiLonestar View Post
The quick and easy way is to get a low mileage, new or remanned 360 and drop it in.
I've done the remanufactured engine swap on a Ford van & depending on your budget / tools / how much you can do yourself, that may be the best way to go.

I've got another van with a worn-out engine & rather than rebuild it I will take it to a shop which pulls your old engine & replaces it with a reman with a 12-month, 12,000 mile warranty (van engines are a royal pain to remove / re-install), but when it comes time to overhaul the diesel in my pickup I'll do most of that myself. However, I do have a machine shop available to me not 5 minutes away & what tools I don't have that shop does.

It just depends on what you can (or are willing to) spend, how much you can do yourself & the 318/360 engines have been made for so long that parts are easy to get -- stock replacement or performance. Heck, you can even get a 406 "crate motor" that's a bored/stroked 360 & makes over 400 HP! But it ain't cheap!
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:32 AM
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Thank you all for your replies to my post. I have debated on rebuilding the engine. I have a good friend who owns a performance shop, and for the right amount of money, could easily give me the performance I want. But like I said, that's all for a big chunk of $$$. The truck has been in the family since new (1995). I'd love to drop a 360 in it, but would prefer to keep the original engine. Perhaps when tax time comes, I can just hand over the keys to my friend's shop.

On another note, have any of you experienced any problems with LED/projector lights affecting your turn signals? My hazards work properly. Just my turn signals flash every 5-6 seconds. Which can't be safe for car's in my blind spots...

Last, I have done some research for my door lock issues. I came across a thread regarding this issue. Just wondering if any of you have had any related issues or know how to fix it.
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Old 08-25-2012, 02:51 PM
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If you're looking for a better truck engine, starting with a 360 is better. It is a longer stroke engine versus the 318 which is a short stroke.
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Old 08-25-2012, 04:22 PM
ArtNJr ArtNJr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HemiLonestar View Post
If you're looking for a better truck engine, starting with a 360 is better. It is a longer stroke engine versus the 318 which is a short stroke.
Yep, at 4" (bore) x 3.58" stroke, the 360 has a longer stroke than a 383 or even a 400 ! (3.38" stroke on those). The 318 (same block) measures 3.91" (bore) x 3.31" (stroke) & the great ol' 340 engine has the same stroke, just a bigger bore.

The longer the stroke, the better for low rpm torque, the shorter the stroke, the better for high rpm HP. Pick one -- 'cause as a general rule (unless you supercharge / turbocharge) when you increase one you decrease the other -- setups that make great low end torque are limited on top end HP & vice-versa. Then there's the old saying, "The only substitute for cubic inches is cubic money", to which I added, "and ya can't beat both."
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Old 08-26-2012, 11:32 AM
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It was even designed to be a large car/truck engine. The main bearing sizes are bigger than a 273/318/340 size.
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Old 08-29-2012, 11:50 PM
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Everyone seems to be focused on engine performance and forgetting his other questions... Understandable. I too am looking to make a few more ponies. But to answer the other questions...

Your lights... I honestly don't have a clue. Your turn signals maybe be remedied by the guys at superbrightleds.com. They carry anything and everything for LED applications. A lot of guys here swear by them, and I intend to agree though I have yet to purchase from them.

As for your locks on the other hand, sounds like the gears in the actuator motor(s) are shot. My wife's car has the same problem. Every now and again, the teeth will catch and the lock will pop, but most of the time the motor just makes noise. I would just plan on replacing your door lock actuators.
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