1998.5 Dodge Ram CTD - Sally

57Cessna172

New member
Been watching this build for awhile. Real nice. Have you pulled the trigger on the salta rims? I'd love to see what they look like on a 2nd gen.

thanks!
 

frojoe

Adventurer
Been watching this build for awhile. Real nice. Have you pulled the trigger on the salta rims? I'd love to see what they look like on a 2nd gen.

thanks!
I wish! I was wanting to have them ordered already, shipped to WA state, then I cross the border to pick them up... but the border being closed for non-essential travel has squashed that. I would still like to get the Salta's, just the shipping+brokerage cost to ship wheels across the border is just astronomically rapey. I may just wait and pick them up on the way back from a potential Sept 2020 Moab trip we have planned, if the border becomes workable again. Still want them.

That said, I've moved over to a set of used 37"x12.5" Toyo M/T's (approx 60% tread left).. and they become the focal point of the wheel.. meaning I have even less hate for these temporary wheels I'm being forced to run before the Salta's.

As a point of reference for the below tire fitment pics:

- My front is lifted 1.5-1.75" from stock HD springs
- Rear is about 0.5" lower than stock
- Control arms are 3/4" longer than stock
- Wheels are 17"x8.0", with 5.0" backspace

No flex test yet, but going camping this weekend so will try and test it out well. I'll take some detail pics of what I preemptively did:

- trimmed bottom 4" off front edge of front inner fender wells
- trimmed a triangular edge off the front bumper edges
- trimmed ~3/4" triangular corner part off cab pinch seam under front cab corner/rocker.. just so if the tire finds it there isn't a point thin/sharp vertical edge
- hammer-rolled the rear fender lips in a bit, so it's a softer edge if tire rolls forward under torque while flexed.



















 

57Cessna172

New member
Looks good! Fully understand the price and the COVID issues going on. I'd love to do the same tire size wise. If possible, could you measure the clearance distance you now have from your transfer case to the ground. This would help me see the height difference on mine. I'd like to be able to still park in my garage:) On another note, have you been able to see what impact the larger tires have had on your mpg?

thanks again! Here's a pic of mine.01 4wd diesel alu cab awning.jpg
 

frojoe

Adventurer
Sounds good, I'll measure transfer case skid plate height from ground when parked level. I've been meaning to measure new cab roof line height as well.

I haven't checked mileage yet.. I've had these tires on for a good 2 weeks but have only used up 1/4 tank. I'll probably be putting 600km of highway on it this weekend, so that'll be a perfect comparison.

For reference, I've been around 14.2-14.5 L/100km (~16mpg) for mixed city or full city driving. I've seen as low as 11.8L/100km (20mpg) when "empty" but just with camping kit, and driving hundreds of highway kilometers at a time. The Firestone M/T's were also a very hard compound, and surprisingly quiet... so that may have helped.
 

chet6.7

Explorer
Looks good! Fully understand the price and the COVID issues going on. I'd love to do the same tire size wise. If possible, could you measure the clearance distance you now have from your transfer case to the ground. This would help me see the height difference on mine. I'd like to be able to still park in my garage:) On another note, have you been able to see what impact the larger tires have had on your mpg?

thanks again! Here's a pic of mine.View attachment 594106
Nice truck,what type of awning do you have and what it is attached to.Thanks.
 

frojoe

Adventurer
Nice truck,what type of awning do you have and what it is attached to.Thanks.
Yeah.. jeez I completely breezed past complimenting 57Cessna172 on his clean 2nd gen!

I've been curious to see what an awning looks like mounted to the side of a body color low roof canopy... Cessna feel free to attach a few more pics!!

Cheers,
Joe
 

57Cessna172

New member
Joe,


Thanks for the compliment. Pic hides some of her character:) Need to take a few more detailed pics of the canopy install. I've had the awning installed for about 2 years. Use it all of the time. One of the best additions I have done. I'll start a thread for the truck/awning and cross link here. No need to clutter up your fantastically detailed thread for yours.

Here is a link to the awning.

thanks again,
Steve


Yeah.. jeez I completely breezed past complimenting 57Cessna172 on his clean 2nd gen!

I've been curious to see what an awning looks like mounted to the side of a body color low roof canopy... Cessna feel free to attach a few more pics!!

Cheers,
Joe
 

frojoe

Adventurer
Got around to another thing I've wanted to do for a while.. install bed rail LED strips. It's just handy to have when unloading or camping at night or whatever.

The LED stripping is this IP 67 stuff from SuperBrightLEDs... 4000K temperature, each bedrail getting a 54" long strip equating to about 1150lm per bedrail/side.


For these I used L-channel that I drilled holes in to ziptie the LED strip to (not really trusting just the double-sided tape), and installed a weatherproof rocker switch under the berdrail, that always has fused battery 12V, so I can turn the light on while at the tailgate, no need for key-on action.













There's really minimal shadowing around the wheel tubs, which is nice. I also installed these stainless steel tiedown points, to have a place to securely strap the 12V fridge to.



And I continue to be impressed with how much I can stuff in this toolbox... full offroad kit. Bag of tow straps, full tool kit bag, full-ish fluids, toolbox full of repair items (spare rad hoses, u-joints, belt, misc bolts, hoses, front and rear brake lines, fuel fittings, etc), a bag of 4 Milwaukee M18 tools, some radio accessories, a machete, a shovel, and a few extra things.





Ready for a weekend in the bush... dang that 37" spare takes up a lot of space!!

 
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frojoe

Adventurer
To answer the mileage question, I was indicating 68kph when a friend in a CRV was doing 80kph, verified by GPS too... so this gives my speedo an error of ~18%. Using this, I calculated an actual highway mileage of...... 11.7L/100km, or 20mpg. This was with the tires filled to 54psi front, 42psi rear, and I have 3.55 gears. I was usually doing around 90kph indicated, so actually 105kph/65mph, at around 1700rpm.

It is unbelievable how big an improvement in ride quality it is with these 37's. On my previous [hard] Firestone 35's, I'd have to go down to ~24psi front 18psi rear to get a decent washboard logging road ride quality, but these Toyo's I was at 38psi and 28psi and it was just so much better. I wonder what combo it is due to: lower load range D rating, softer knob/sidewall compound, and/or just the bigger overall diameter. I had no issue with stability doing 100+km/hr slideways, but more importantly it was still smooth going slowly around 50km/hr.



















 
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frojoe

Adventurer
Looks good! Fully understand the price and the COVID issues going on. I'd love to do the same tire size wise. If possible, could you measure the clearance distance you now have from your transfer case to the ground. This would help me see the height difference on mine. I'd like to be able to still park in my garage:)
I measured today, empty bed (other than spare tire) I had 16" under my transfercase skidplate, at the front edge. My skidplate is pretty straight still so I'm considering that a reliable reference measurement. I measured the top of my cab, and the middle of the cab looked about 79-80", but I didn't have a level to transfer that mid-roof cab height to the measuring tape which was situated between the cab and bed.
 

57Cessna172

New member
Thanks for the information. Measured mine today to compare. I think your within half an inch of my stock height. I have the tow package and I raised the front by 2” so she’d sit level years ago. Going by your measurements - Looks like if I removed the 2” lift from the front. Removed the block added by the factory to the back axle. I’d be at your height after the wheel and rim swap. That’s going from stock rims running 285’s.

Good to hear your getting that kind of fuel milage. I must have lead in my foot. I averaged 17.5 mpg this weekend. Put on 1100 miles on a trip. Nearly all highway and normally running 80-82 mph.

BTW - nice job on the lights for the bed.

Thanks again,



I measured today, empty bed (other than spare tire) I had 16" under my transfercase skidplate, at the front edge. My skidplate is pretty straight still so I'm considering that a reliable reference measurement. I measured the top of my cab, and the middle of the cab looked about 79-80", but I didn't have a level to transfer that mid-roof cab height to the measuring tape which was situated between the cab and bed.
 

Attachments

frojoe

Adventurer
Thanks for the information. Measured mine today to compare. I think your within half an inch of my stock height. I have the tow package and I raised the front by 2” so she’d sit level years ago. Going by your measurements - Looks like if I removed the 2” lift from the front. Removed the block added by the factory to the back axle. I’d be at your height after the wheel and rim swap. That’s going from stock rims running 285’s.

Good to hear your getting that kind of fuel milage. I must have lead in my foot. I averaged 17.5 mpg this weekend. Put on 1100 miles on a trip. Nearly all highway and normally running 80-82 mph.

BTW - nice job on the lights for the bed.

Thanks again,
That's all good to know... relative to factory, my front is somewhere around +1.75", and then rear is about -0.75".

I bet you'd have to replace the factory [4.5"] block with a 3" block or so to maintain some height in the rear... or else your rear would be very low (assuming you don't swap from factory leafs to aftermarket). Also to keep in mind, if you swap to aftermarket rear axle blocks, you're likely to lose the bump stop platform and thus factory rubber bump stop functionality.
 

frojoe

Adventurer
Decided to add some of the remaining LED strip to the toolbox, since it's a black hole of nothingness when the bedrail LED's are on at night. I used more of the same strip, reused a pushbutton switch original to a different LED reel, and wired it to a Metripack connector at the bedrail for when I want to remove the toolbox.

The loose connector in the bed is for the fridge.









No lights...



Bedrail LED's only...










 

frojoe

Adventurer
Also went on another camping trip this weekend, to a trail called Whipsaw near Princeton, BC. We had 3 Dodges and a pre-runner-ish GMC Sierra join us... that Sierra proceeded to explode a steering rack around 1/4 into the trail, but we decided to press forward, towing it. That was slow, but ended up being a pretty hilarious task.

For anyone that knows Whipsaw.. imagine seeing any one of those steep tight loose climbs out of Twin Lakes headed towards Lodestone.... with a Dodge in 4-low 1st gear towing a 6000lb unsteerable dead weight behind it. I was lead truck, and on a good number of the steepest/loosest climbs I had to pull the blue 2003 common rail Ram, which was then pulling the Sierra, and then we'd strap the Sierra rear bumper to the front bumper of the 2006 dually behind it for some of the steep descents... definitely a skill-building endeavor.

It's crazy how well this truck now works on 37's... it struggled on none of optional hard climb options, and if it does slip a tire the 24V wants to hold an idle so strongly that the tire will just slip-slip-shimmy-grip and propel forward... all in 4-low 1st or 2nd gear, no throttle input needed, at idle... and the gentlest of steering input suggestions.... it's almost liking cheating actually haha. People were confused/stoked/questioning why and how we driving our big diesel rams thru some of the trees without any issue.



Heading into trail Friday night around 11pm...



So much light....











Since I STILL haven't connected the parking brake from my Chevy leaf spring swap, I have to get creative and park crossed-up on trail to not roll anywhere... but it makes for fun articulation pics...









Here's the blue 2003 6spd common rail 2500 that did the primary towing of the Sierra..



Here we were mid-climb up a hill that was only getting steeper, and we stopped where we could still get traction to get a bit of a run-up to the steepest top section. The blue truck in my rearview was strapped to me for probably 45mins of that climb, spinning and bumping, looking for traction and every couple inches of forward progress with a 6,000lbs dead weight behind us....



This gives an idea of the kind of steepness we were towing up (and often getting decently steeper), taken at the same spot the previous rearview mirror pic was taken...



FINALLY... top of the climb and in the open, undulating rolling alpine meadows....





 
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