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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I have a 1987 Dodge Ram W150, 5.2L 318, 2280 Holley, Auto Trans. with 100,000 miles

My issue is.... I was recently taking apart the dash to both change some bulbs and do a thorough spring clean...

I disconnected the negative cable while working.

I had to run an errand so I reconnected the battery, threw the gauge cluster back in, ran my errand, came home, all with no issues. (not sure if relevant but could be worth noting)

Then, a while later, I went to run another errand aaaaaannndd... I'm not going anywhere.

The truck acts like it wants to start and if I give it gas, it might give me a "chug" or two but then immediately dies.

What I've done/checked:

*Put a multimeter to the battery and am getting 12.42... good there

*Put a spark tester in between spark plug and wire and it was flashing... indicating fuel issue

Random FYI: I have 3/4 tank of gas

*Have tried "re-cycling" or "re-learning" the battery where I turn the ignition on (but obviously not started) and hold gas pedal down for 30 secs.... did this 3x's per another post... nothing

*Had someone turn the key so I could listen for the fuel pump and I hear nothing coming from gas cap/tank area

*Not sure if this counts as trying anything technically speaking but if I open the carb intake and manually "give it gas" I can hear what I believe is fuel squirting.... Did this from inside the cab while trying to start it, with pedal to the floor and had gas all over the top of the carb... Not sure if thats eliminating a fuel pump or sending issue but I tried it and that was my outcome

*Replaced fuel filter about 3 weeks/300 miles ago

*Attempted to unscrew fuel line where it connects to the front of the carb (just below the bowl) to check for pressure and had no idea what I was doing but I began to bend the line, saw nothing coming out, and figured it was best to just stop...

*Checked fuses and all seems well

Probably not related but worth noting:

I have a pretty good oil leak I think coming from the sending unit...

I have a nasty power steering leak I think coming from the seal where the steering wheel shaft meets the gear box (not up on all my technical terms, please bear with me)

The drivers side front wheel well sits 3" lower than other 3 wheel wells, I guess infamously known as the "Dodge lean" and probably due to the rusted strips once known as leaf springs...

And if you follow most of the vacuum lines the end in odd places with caps on them... The truck has been running great up to now so haven't bothered with them... maybe I should?

Other than that... this is seriously my dream truck!!

Soo....

1. Any ideas whats wrong?

2. Should I put everything in the cab back together? Maybe it knows the stereo is disconnected and refuses to go anywhere... (gotta find some humor in this....then again, I wouldn't be surprised if newer cars today have a feature like this...)

Hope I supplied enough relevant info... Thanks in advance for any info/thoughts!
 

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Sounds like a bad ballast resistor to me. The older Mopars are known for this. A lot of guys keep a spare one in their tool box.
 

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Power steering pump leak, input shaft seal on the steering gear. Just did mine recently and it was easy.

No electric fuel pump. Its manual. Wont hear it turn on.

You can ohm out the ballast resistor. Should be like 1.9 ohms resistance. Coil should have like 9 v with key on.

Squirting would be the accelerator pump in action on the carb. Thats normal
 

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Agree with others. ... Also; "had gas all over the top of the carb" could be caused by a sticking float, "gently" tapping carb a few times may free it up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Update

First off, thanks for the replies!! All good stuff!!

So, I went out and purchased the ballast resistor (pic included)

I cannot find this for the life of me!?!?

Research had shown it should be on the drivers side firewall.... Aaaaanndd..... There's nothing, not even the four pronged version.

This leads me to believe, I have a "lean burn" something or other... (I don't know, there are a bunch of online arguments about when you have a lean burn you don't have a resistor but in 1985 if the temp was over 60 degrees in February Mopar used the flux capacitor on certain models until 1990 but only blue, red and brown trucks...... I don't know they lost me

So, I have included two photos one looking toward the master cylinder and one showing behind the battery where said "lean burn" could be identified...

If I do not have the ballast resistor, any other thoughts???
[/ATTACH]
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Maachine-

In regard to the input shaft seal, any tips or tricks? Looks pretty straight forward... Did you just do the one seal or a seal kit for the gear box?

"The Beast" looks like a beast!! Well done!!
 

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Thats a lean burn computer. I did just the one seal. It was super cheap on rockauto. Hardest part was getting my borgeson steering shaft off. It was a little frozen up. I also watched a video on you tube. Cant remember the title but the guy was informative and answered all the questions i had.
 
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