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2001 3500 Front End Rebuild Questions

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by thainglo, Oct 13, 2011.

  1. thainglo

    thainglo Junior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 2

    Hello all! My first post, been reading through here as a guest for the past several weeks. Here's my story, I'm hoping to get some confirmation / advice in preparation for starting to plow my own parking lot this winter.

    Truck: 2001 4wd, Diesel, Auto, 4.10 rear, Dually, Extended Cab, 159,000. No lift
    - Southern truck that I bought before moving from Georgia to Iowa last year, so nice and rust free!

    Issues: From what I've read, front end issues seem fairly common. Mine works ok for the light use I've given it the past two years I've owned it - just regular truck work, no HD towing, just stuff in bed from time to time. I needed to get the rear tires replaced, while there the shop walked me through the assessment they did on the front end. Pretty much needs new everything. Shows on the front tires that they are cupped and I need to keep the steering wheel pulled a little to the left to keep it going straight. If I wasn't planning to push snow, wouldn't worry about it.

    I bought the truck two years ago thinking that it would make a good plow truck. Now it looks like I might get my chance to do some independent work, pretty excited about it. After doing hours of reading, researching, pricing, etc on front end components, I've put together the package that I think works best for my needs and budget. Hoping the experts can take a look, let me know what I'm missing, better options, ect.

    Ball Joints - I'd like to go with Carli, but when I go to there website they only have kits that fit 2003 and later. Do these fit in the 2nd gens?

    Tie Rods - haven't found a consensus HD version. Moog? TRW? Any others?

    U-Joints - Spicer Life (5-806X) from 8lug ($40 each)
    Track Bar - Thuren 0-3" Lift Track Bar ($346)
    Steering Shaft - Borgeson 000950 ($284)
    Springs - SuperCoils SSC-23 ($470)

    If budget allows, I'll put in a Dynatech Free Spin Bearing Kit ($2000) from 8lug

    Haven't decided on the plow that I'd use yet, wanted to get the front end built back up with bullet-proof parts, then start the plow research...

    Anything I missed?

    Thanks for the help!

    DAFFMOBILEWASH PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,602

    I would stick with Moog and XRF. No matter what you do you will be replacing stuff in the spring. Plows on the front of any Cummins engine Dodge is too much weight for the front end period. Just make sure you use lots of never sieze and keep the warentee cards on the parts. Don't overlook all the universals from front to rear. They will become the week link in the drive line. From experience the greasable ones are the ones you want.

    On the plus side the trucks will move a mountain of snow.....

    MIDTOWNPC PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,556

    Look up lukes links before you go moog
    I've been happy.
  4. shouldawent

    shouldawent Junior Member
    Messages: 11

  5. thainglo

    thainglo Junior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 2

    These are great tips! I saw some info on the 3rg gen track bar kit, will keep digging there.

    Are there any components that I've overlooked?

    Any recommendations on the ball joints?
  6. Laszlo Almasi

    Laszlo Almasi Senior Member
    Messages: 326

    Unfortunately, we are kinda stuck on the ball joints. I have an '01 myself and have yet to find anything in the aftermarket for the ball joints. I'm getting a DynaTrac free spin kit and tracbar from DT Profab ( http://www.dtprofab.com/ ) and right now I am looking for some heavier duty springs as well. I've noticed that the front of my truck rides at 39.25" and the rear is at 43" measured to the top center of each wheel well. When I have the plow mouted on my '01 Ram (V8 2500) it will bottom out on some bumps. I wish I got the diesel back then.

    As others have mentioned, the Borg steering shaft, and also look into the steering brace that DT has. There are others out there too but Dave at DT hooked me up with a great deal on the DYNA he had plus the tracbar setup. He is in the process of kitting things together to help buyers save some funds.
  7. plowguy43

    plowguy43 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,281

    I don't believe the F350 conversion for the hubs/knuckles will work on the 01's, I believe the cutoff was 99 but I'm not 100% Positive.

    The XRF Ball Joints are great and can be had for a set of 4 for under $200 shipped on Ebay.
    You can also replace every tie rod on the front end for under $200 Shipped from Ebay (not moog quality, but guys have been happy with them). I can get some links if your interested.

    Go with a 3rd gen track bar, better in the long run.

    As for coils, you can get progressive rate coils on Ebay from Moog for under $100 shipped as well, might save you some coin.