DodgeTalk Forum banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First time purchase of a Dodge/ Mopar line.
'94 Dodge Dakota Sport, 4WD, 5.2L. Purchased at what I thought at the time to be a good deal and would make a good project vehicle to work with and restore to my taste.
It has turned into a money hungry, time consuming vacuum that has yet to stop...and I haven't even been able to drive it yet!!!
Things done so far include; repaired and traced multiple electrical splices incorrectly done, replaced ECM, replaced fuel pump, changed sparkplugs, cap & rotor (wires tested for resistance and confirmed new), Changed all fluids, and have just finished replacing the timing chain that turned into having to reposition the cam with chain off (it was 180 off TDC as was the distributor) After triple checking to make sure everything was as should be at TDC, I now have a CRANK / NO START with spark at the plugs and good fuel pressure on the fuel rail.
Maybe my frustration is causing me to overlook something simple (I can only hope), but I would GREATLY appreciate any help/advice I can get at this point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
First time purchase of a Dodge/ Mopar line.
'94 Dodge Dakota Sport, 4WD, 5.2L. Purchased at what I thought at the time to be a good deal and would make a good project vehicle to work with and restore to my taste.
It has turned into a money hungry, time consuming vacuum that has yet to stop...and I haven't even been able to drive it yet!!!
Things done so far include; repaired and traced multiple electrical splices incorrectly done, replaced ECM, replaced fuel pump, changed sparkplugs, cap & rotor (wires tested for resistance and confirmed new), Changed all fluids, and have just finished replacing the timing chain that turned into having to reposition the cam with chain off (it was 180 off TDC as was the distributor) After triple checking to make sure everything was as should be at TDC, I now have a CRANK / NO START with spark at the plugs and good fuel pressure on the fuel rail.
Maybe my frustration is causing me to overlook something simple (I can only hope), but I would GREATLY appreciate any help/advice I can get at this point.
1. What led you to believe the timing was 180 degrees off? #1 TDC is when both valves are closed and #1 piston is at it's highest position. Have you confirmed this?
2. "Replaced ECM" Why?
3. Does it have fresh fuel?

I assume you bought this not running? This is never a good idea, unless you're ready for anything and just don't care, because you don't know what's wrong or what's been done to it.

My suspicion is that, unless it's got old bad gas in it, that it's in fact not timed correctly, since you're claiming spark and fuel pressure. Does it do anything? Do any cylinders fire? Something should be happening if you have fuel and spark, even if it just sputters a little.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Originally, I thought the most i would deal with is electrical issues. I replaced the ECM after repairing the wiring because I downloaded the wiring schematic and found there was voltage going in but there was no voltage coming out of the ECM. The truck started after the change, but it was idling very rough had had absolutely no power or acceleration. It would not puill itself up even a slight incline, as though the exhaust were 100% blocked. But there was adequate flow out the tail pipe. I decided to change the timing chain because I figured if that turned out not to be the problem, it was still past due for a change. What I found then was almost 2 inches of free play in the old timing chain. My procedure for finding TDC was using compression gauge to ensure the compression stroke and removing valve cover to note position of #1-cylinder valves. TDC on the compression stroke ended with timing marks on both crankshaft and cam at the 12 o'clock position. Then after correcting that, I found the distributor to be exactly 180 off at TDC. I raised it just far enough to rotate the rotor around to the correct position. As for the question of bad gas, I drained the tank and disconnected fuel line from rail and blew out the line when i changed the fuel pump.
Somewhere along the line of all the things I've done this far I know there is something I have done wrong, but I just can't figure out what it is. Also, when I changed the position of the cam. I loosened all rocker arms to prevent piston from jamming against any valves and retightened them to the 21 ft lbs the manual called for. I came across something on-line that said the distributor is not used for timing but used only for fuel sync. If this is true, then how do I correct this "fuel sync"???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
By the way it does sputter when cranking and also seems to be cranking over faster than it should when cranking. I haven't checked all cylinders since finishing the timing chain but I did check #1 cylinder and compression held steady at 137, just as it was before changing out timing chain
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
482 Posts
By the way it does sputter when cranking and also seems to be cranking over faster than it should when cranking. I haven't checked all cylinders since finishing the timing chain but I did check #1 cylinder and compression held steady at 137, just as it was before changing out timing chain
The first thing that pops to mind is that your distributor is off by one tooth. This is easy to do. 137 for compression is not great. Either that's a tired engine, the valves are worn, or timing is off. It's very odd that you bought this with the timing off like that, was this something the previous owner was messing around with? I've never seen a timing chain with 2 inches of slack. I consider timing chains lifetime components unless you're dealing with very high mileages. I've got one with over 300k on it and it runs fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The first thing that pops to mind is that your distributor is off by one tooth. This is easy to do. 137 for compression is not great. Either that's a tired engine, the valves are worn, or timing is off. It's very odd that you bought this with the timing off like that, was this something the previous owner was messing around with? I've never seen a timing chain with 2 inches of slack. I consider timing chains lifetime components unless you're dealing with very high mileages. I've got one with over 300k on it and it runs fine.
It was originally going to be a weekender's project for me to mess around with and to help someone out financially. Little did I know what I was getting myself into. Anyway, since my last post, I have found 3 separate circuits shorted to ground (and yet only one of those actually blew a fuse). So I replaced entire engine compartment wiring harness. The truck will now start and idles a little rough but max RPM's is right around 21 to 2400 and when put into gear there is absolutely NO acceleration and doesn't even have the power to pull itself up the slightest incline. It backfires mostly out the pipes but occasionally out the intake too. I know my frustration is affecting my thinking but I could really use some advice on what it is I'm missing here. I'm starting to think torque converter now....????
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top