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1997 Dodge Ram v6 #5388050 03/28/20 03:31 PM
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urrlord Offline OP
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I have been without a pickup for a few years and have been perusing Craigslist for a cheap truck.So after a number of drives and dealings with the usual C-List shady/clueless and outright dishonest sellers I purchased ..........a white 1997 D1500 3.9 v6 5 speed shortbed with 138k .I live in central Ga and the truck was outside of Charleston SC ,about a 4 hour drive.When me and the wife arrived there the truck was a little dinged and dented which was not apparent in the photos online but it ran good ,did not smoke and all the fluids looked good ,a/c worked but blew out of all of the vents at varying times..The guy wanted 1700 and I offered 1550 which was taken.

The truck ran well on the drive back and acheived 20 mpg(at speeds up to 80 mph),however it is the noisiest truck I have ever owned (side note -got pulled over by a college pd for no tag at 1230 am Monday morning 8 miles from home,no ticket though).Lots of road noise.Issues of the truck were -it ran slightly rich and the owner had installed the wrong headlamp bulbs and of course the cracked dash and broken console trim were present.A dash coverlay had been installed but rattles a lot.I think the vinyl flooring is not the best for noise reduction.I think an update is in order.

So I ordered head lamps,rotor,distributor cap,plug wires,ngk v-power plugs,coil,air filter for a tune up.In between work and rain I was not sure about doing the tuneup soon, so I dropped it off with my mechanic along with a jug of Traveller 10w40 and a protec/wix filter.

Since picking up the truck I have to say it is a good bit quieter moreso than I think replacing the Fram SureGrip and unknown oil(dark brown but still able to see the dipstick markings through it).would account for.I did not hear any pinging while driving sooooo could a tune up quieten an engine?The mechanic put the used parts in a box for me to check out,the plug wires had paint stripes on them where someone had replaced them and he stated that the champion plugs had been in there a while and were difficult to remove(the center electrodes had the sharp edges rounded off!So I think I agree with that assessment)

I'm thinking some carpet to line the cab behind and under the seat and to overlay the vinyl flooring may cut down the road noise.And take off the coverlay and use some heavy cardboard to replace the broken dash ,zip tie it to the dash braces to give the coverlay something to lay on so it won't bounce so much .Just some thoughts on fixing some of the issues on this old truck.Also the owner had installed 245/75r16 tires(less than 1000 miles on them),which is 2 sizes larger than factory.However each tire is a different brand and type -2 street tires,1 allseason and 1 all terrain I guess he got a special price on all the "orphan" tires at some shop.(lol)I'll have to remedy that one day.

Any one with experience with these engines and truck combo's.I've had 318's,slant sixes and Chrysler 4 bangers ...........soo chime in.

Last edited by urrlord; 03/28/20 03:38 PM. Reason: add content
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388083 03/28/20 04:16 PM
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IIRC, the 3.9 was a 5.2/318 with 2 cylinders chopped off. But I don’t think you’re going to get a super quiet sounding vehicle no matter what you do. Some dynamat placed through the cab would certainly help, but at the end of the day it’s a 23 year old pick up truck.


2019 Ram 1500 Classic
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Slight Mopar obsession
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388150 03/28/20 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by urrlord
The truck ran well on the drive back and acheived 20 mpg(at speeds up to 80 mph),however it is the noisiest truck I have ever owned (side note -got pulled over by a college pd for no tag at 1230 am Monday morning 8 miles from home,no ticket though).


You southern folks are lucky. Around here, not only would you be getting a ticket but most likely the truck would be impounded with no tags.

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388158 03/28/20 05:41 PM
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The 3.9 is a coarse engine, you really cannot smooth it out. (It's an odd-fire design with no balance shaft.)

What tires are on it? If it has aggressive treads, that would be loud.


1979 Coupe de Ville, 542 stroker, Delo 15W-40, Delco filter
2013 Challenger SRT8 Core, Mobil 1 0W-40, Mopar
2011 Sportster 883, parked for winter SYN3 20W-50, HD black
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: atikovi] #5388188 03/28/20 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by atikovi
Originally Posted by urrlord
The truck ran well on the drive back and acheived 20 mpg(at speeds up to 80 mph),however it is the noisiest truck I have ever owned (side note -got pulled over by a college pd for no tag at 1230 am Monday morning 8 miles from home,no ticket though).


You southern folks are lucky. Around here, not only would you be getting a ticket but most likely the truck would be impounded with no tags.
Don't have to worry about that here in OH for the foreseeable future-governor closed ALL the BMVs (except for a few processing CDLs), plates are unobtanium here now.


06 Ram 3500 CTD 4X4(FG Venturi), 89 F-450 7.3, 98 XJ 4.0(XG8A), 05 xB(XG3600), 18 Transit 3.7 (MC), 03 Merc Grand Marquis 4.6 2V(XG2), 11 Express 3500 6.0 (Fram PH10060 for now)
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388191 03/28/20 06:13 PM
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urrlord Offline OP
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The tires are a cooper all terrain , a ohtsu all season sport ,a linglong street/highway tire and a mesa street /highway tire. I do like the tread design and depth of the mesa though .I've had 2 70 Fords,Dodges-74,78,82,84 and 86 and a 92 all of which were quieter.Hmmmm all of those were the boxy body style.Wonder if the different cab style has an amplification effect?

Since the tune up and oil change the engine is about 2/3 quieter and is pretty quiet and smooth.

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: bullwinkle] #5388204 03/28/20 06:28 PM
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Originally Posted by bullwinkle
Originally Posted by atikovi
Originally Posted by urrlord
The truck ran well on the drive back and acheived 20 mpg(at speeds up to 80 mph),however it is the noisiest truck I have ever owned (side note -got pulled over by a college pd for no tag at 1230 am Monday morning 8 miles from home,no ticket though).


You southern folks are lucky. Around here, not only would you be getting a ticket but most likely the truck would be impounded with no tags.
Don't have to worry about that here in OH for the foreseeable future-governor closed ALL the BMVs (except for a few processing CDLs), plates are unobtanium here now.


DMV's closed around here too but independent tag and title agents can still do the transactions, at least in Maryland for a fee.

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388239 03/28/20 07:24 PM
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Home Depot sell some 12"x15' duct insulation that works well for lining the floor of pickups. Cheap too. Makes a big difference.


99 Jeep WJ 4.7 200,000mi. Maxlife 10w30, Fram Ultra.
15 Ford Escape S 2.5, 75,000mi. Castrol Edge EP 5w30 Fram Ultra.
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388253 03/28/20 07:35 PM
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urrlord Offline OP
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Originally Posted by atikovi
Originally Posted by urrlord
The truck ran well on the drive back and acheived 20 mpg(at speeds up to 80 mph),however it is the noisiest truck I have ever owned (side note -got pulled over by a college pd for no tag at 1230 am Monday morning 8 miles from home,no ticket though).


You southern folks are lucky. Around here, not only would you be getting a ticket but most likely the truck would be impounded with no tags.



Well ,I had the bill of sale and the title in hand and proof of insurance I just found it amusing that I had drove 372 out of 380 miles ,had been passed and passed by Ga Sate Troopers ,various county and city law enforcement units without incident and sat at an accident clearing site and chatted with a deputy for a while and no one blinked an eye but a very limited jurisdiction officer would pull me over as I was the only other vehicle in downtown besides him.Like I said -kind of amusing and to tell the truth I'm not sure he was old enough to tote a pistol.LOL

Driving home from another state on a Sunday after a private purchase, you have no choice in the tag matter but to come back without a tag if the prior owner wanted to keep them.I have had an owner let me mail the tag back to them after getting home.But otherwise drive on or make one of those "just purchased" signs and hope that deflects attention.

I actually had a deputy in nearby county(notorious for ticket writing) pull me over one night because I had dealer plates from another state on my car t.A car that I had bought in a neighboring state ,he thought I should have Georgia dealer plates and fortunately I had my bill of sale from the dealer still in the car with me.That was the only thing that made him happy. crzy

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: Blkstanger] #5388261 03/28/20 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Blkstanger
Home Depot sell some 12"x15' duct insulation that works well for lining the floor of pickups. Cheap too. Makes a big difference.



thanks stanger.
.I had forgot about that stuff .I was thinking of spraying the door interiors etc with undercoating or bedliner.I had did that with a Geo Tracker and it helped a good bit.

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388295 03/28/20 09:11 PM
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Also since this is an oil forum ---------oil pressure with the 10w40 and wix filter went up to 43-44 from the steady 40 of the [censored] and unknown oil.I'm happy grin

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388296 03/28/20 09:12 PM
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"orange can of death" is censored?LOL

Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388432 03/29/20 07:12 AM
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As you can see in my signature, I have the same engine group/Magnum as you just 2 cylinders added. Besides your tune up, clean that carburetor up real good. Every year I spray a good amount of carburetor cleaner on and down the carb and let it sit with a older rag in it. Then spray more and use an old toothbrush and scrub it. Spray it more and let it sit a good half an hour/hour. Till I am all said and done -- I have used a full can. Also, run back to back bottles of Techron Complete Fuel System Cleaner in your gas tank per instructions on bottle. I always just use OEM Champion Coppers and mine purrs. Truthfully, get all the same type of tires on your truck and that will make a huge noise difference. That engine calls for a 10W30 so I am sure the 10W40 will suffice also. I would change the oil & filter after 1000 miles with your first oil change. Just to be on the safe side -- those Magnum engines are not picky between conventional/semi and full synthetic. I prefer the Fram Ultra but Wix is a decent filter also.

Dale


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2008 Acura TL 3.2L PPHM 0W20 & FU (117K)
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Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388533 03/29/20 10:21 AM
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thanks for the tip BAJA_05.

I have ran a bottle of gas treatment ,a dose of MMO and when I gas up today I will be putting in a bottle of high mileage gas treatment and a half dose of MMO or maybe a dose of acetone.Because me and the wife will be taking a Sunday drive of about 5/6 hours round trip to look at a set of Dodge tires/rims for the truck in the proper 225/75r16.The seller is an elderly gentleman who had bought them for.his Ford truck but they didn't fit.I know some Dodge rims have a smaller center hub hole than Ford's.He says they are all terrains with about 80 % tread and all centercaps,he wants 90 bucks.However he doesn't know how to send /post pics so I don't know what style the rims are or the tires are.Dodge has a plethora of different wheels on the Rams.But it's a pretty day for a Sunday drive.

I went with the NGK's because on the Dodge forums I was seeing a good bit of complaints about modern Champions sticking.Which my mechanic said he experienced on 2 of the plugs he removed.I ran Champions in my slant sixes,they ran better than the Bosche's I tried one time.

I went with the 10w40 because it's already in the 80's approaching 90 degrees already some days and the Wix/Protec is supposed to be the equivalent of a NAPA silver filter.But I was surprised by the fact the oil capacity is only 4 qts.

Last edited by urrlord; 03/29/20 10:22 AM.
Re: 1997 Dodge Ram v6 [Re: urrlord] #5388577 03/29/20 11:19 AM
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I liked the Magnum 3.9L and 5spd manual in my 1993 Dodge Dakota reg cab, 2wd short bed. It moved along nicely. That was my first brand-new vehicle. I test drove a full sized Ram 2wd, 5spd at the time as well and liked that as well, but the Dakota was about $1200 or so cheaper. I got that Dokata new for just above $12K. The full sized was around $13K. That was a lot back then. LOL!

In terms of power and driveability of the V6, it felt normal to me for the time. Pretty decent. I think these 5spds didn't turn out so well, but I didn't have a problem the 3yrs or so I owned the truck.

Last edited by JTK; 03/29/20 11:23 AM.

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