I have dubbed my 2000 Dodge Dakota Project Nightmare or more appropriately Nightmare Project. Not because it is black, which it is or fast, not like it should be. When the 3.9 Magnum went down for the count, I researched a 5.9 Magnum swap. The mechanical swap was easy as was the wiring. It sure sounded easy, well it still isn't right after a couple of years, I plan to change that. The biggest grief has been the ECM. It supposedly just needed a 5.9 ECM from the same year for a 5.9. Well the supposedly programmed ECM start and ran the truck for 5 seconds and never ran again. After contacting the seller who was no help, I went with the Chrysler ECM experts B+G Performance. Well they sent me there first attempt, did not even start the truck. I then sent them both ECM's. Well there was no fire codes on #7 and #8, check and they were not firing and TCC short circuit code, changed the TCC, all the solenoids and wiring with no change. After the truck sitting in the dead of winter for over a month, I improvised. I ran jumper wires from the two injectors just before #7 and #8 in the firing order. Other than some bucking at speed, a shaky idle and down on power due the timing retarding more I drove. I also you toggle switches, otherwise no TCC or overdrive. My Daughter took the truck out of town and way overheated it and blew a head gasket. I replaced both and all seemed well. An hour into the drive, obviously one of the famous for cracking Magnum heads, cracked. Rather than push it in the bush like I should have, I figured, let's spend money on this worthless truck. Since used Magnum heads are non existent, I bought Ram EQ heads. I also studied that the irons guides stick within minutes, a per a review on Jegs, a on the these otherwise much thicker and better flowing, 233 cfm intake heads. It was a smart move to buy the bronze guide heads from Hughes, at a higher price and bought the thick aluminum intake plenum plate to replace the thin steel plate that always eventually leak. Well it has sat in limbo and ordered a different ECM, they sent me a 6 cylinder ECM despite me explaining the whole situation. So I am returning that one, they can't go outside the license I guess. So I am trying a used one that is guaranteed. Here is the issue, any non factory security system ECM will start and run from the same year. Any factory security system ECM will not run more that 5 seconds. I had no idea that existed in 2000. Two good things was 2000 was the first year the 5.9 could be ordered on a non R/T Dakota and was the last year before the chipped key. I am bound and determined to get this "Super Easy" swap to run the way it should.
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