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Bionicdodge.Com  |  Bionic Tech  |  Styling, Body, & Detailing (Moderator: jusdeez)  |  Topic: 99 dakota deer damage 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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donram360
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« on: June 15, 2019, 04:13:50 PM »

just got a new to me truck on 6/1.  On 6/10 I hit a damn deer with it, came around a curve and BLAM! no time to stop. Theres a guy my son used to work with, this guy has worked at a few Mopar dealers over the years, back when my kid worked with him we got an NOS condenser for my Durango from him, and some new "takeoff" leaf springs for a 97-04 Dakota, I looked him up and he had an NOS condenser for the 99 for a little less than what O'Wrongley's wanted for a China repop.  Still holding Freon AC still works but bent in the shape of a "C" and the plastic shroud that holds it in place is all busted out.
The blast busted the plastic radiator tank right by the mount and directly behind where the upper hose connects.  Took out grille and driver headlite, bent that "V" bat that bolts to the core support and that top bar. and busted the fan shroud.  No fender or hood damage except a paint blister on the pass fender right where it meets the hood. 
  ordered a new radiator from a place online, getting a "HD" one for the price of a STD one locally.   The HD one comes with plumbed in OE style external aux trans cooler in addition to the one that is in the radiator itself, I guess it was an option from the factory back in the day. with only a 42 RE I want to give it all the help I can.   

On the bumper though... this one has the chrome bumper, and it is in surprisingly good shape, for a 99 anything that has lived in this state all of its life. and I thought the bumper was bent, and it was/ but once I got it off it wasn't as bad as I would have thought. The mount brackets on the driver side though are a different story. They took the brunt.  There is a small tweak in the bumper but with the plastic lower trim, it wont be seen.  Whats weird is that where the frame bracket bolts to the bumper the bracket is all sorts of twisted, and once I had the bumper off how easily I was able to straighten it first with a big Crescent, then a huge pair of Channellocks and finally a hammer and block of wood.  No wonder these trucks bumpers rotted so bad/ they aren't that thick and they are FLIMSEY!
I have to pull the core support to get that driver side bumper bracket off that bolts to the inside surface of the frame. stupid design.  and I'd have thought they would have made these a little beefier.

I took the bumper brackets all off of the bumper and straightened them in my press. Only had to mess with the ones from the driver side, could easily see what the damage was as compared to the other side.  Another surprise... all of those brackets are readily available (not OEM Mopar though from here) from JCWhitney of all places.... and they have all of them IN STOCK!
I was all ready to jump in my 96 Dakota and go for a ride as they are not much more than an hour maybe hour and 1/2 from me.... but their store is  CLOSED for the next couple weeks for "construction" and when they come out of that closure they wont be open on weekends any more.... that will suck.   I called them to check availability and was all ready to head out when I was told this/ I could not believe the Indian (off shore/ "towelhead") person on the other end of the phone/ I asked if they were closed how was I talking to someone there? the person on the other end of the phone then admitted I was talking to a "call center" but wouldn't tell me where. I hung up and got back on the computer and found another site/ yup. closed for 3 weeks and not open weekends when they reopen... in the past any time I would have the chance to go by there WAS on weekends....

I figure I'm better to replace those brackets because they have now been bent twice... once by the deer and then by me in straightening them.... found them available OEM, mostly via EPay but one bracket is more $ than I am paying for all of it....
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magnumman
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2019, 05:08:46 PM »

I use to love JC Whitney when I had my IHC Scout II, they had everything for that truck.  I got into an accident with my GTA Trans Am years ago and got the bumper, fender and inner fender there and nothing came close to fitting.  It was just garbage parts and they gave me a hard time returning them. 
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2001 Ram QC 1500: 360cid, 2wd, K+N CAI, SCT tune, Autolite AP3923\'s, MP 1.7 rollers, MP pushrods, SST rims, Hypertech coil, 10.2mm wires, Gibson super truck exhaust, 3\" magnaflow cat, modified Y pipe, modified kegger, 3.92 LSD, MSD-6, Transgo shift kit, 4.7L Injectors, Hipotek 52mm TB, (Currently under construction for a 408 build)

POS Chevy Trailblazer 4x4, the 4x4 is the only good part. This is my Son's truck now.

2007 Chrysler 300 2.7L "Wifes car" No complaints other than it slow.

2012 Ram 5.7 Hemi Outdoorsman, 4x4, LSD, Air Bag Suspension.
donram360
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2019, 04:40:17 AM »

well these are just bumper brackets, will be mostly unseen.... the original bumper barely got hurt... but Im surprised at how easily the damage that did take, was able to come out with a crescent wrench, big pair of channellocks, and hammer with wood block.
I can see how they rot out so easily, they aren't as thick as the ones that are on my Gen 1 Dakotas....  and the ones on the 2018, 1500 that I looked at? I could feel that one deflect with finger pressure...…., I wish theyd make things like they used to
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donram360
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« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2019, 07:00:41 PM »

ok question time.
I got it all back together (bumper needs some slight adjusting, but with the new bumper brackets I can tell the original bumper isn't hurt it WAS the brackets making it look wonky) 
NOS condenser went in great/ bolts and such lined up perfect.  got a radiator online from a "Radiator express" warehouse that I found. HD radiator with OE style external/aux trans cooler included and plumbed in for the same (less than some) locals wanted for the STD radiator like what I pulled out... no aux cooler or anything.
body gaps good, all around. all good, except for 1 thing.... the upper mounts for the radiator ae both off, shifted to the pass side about 3/8".... if something was bent I would not expect the condenser mounts to line up and they do... perfect. the condenser mounts the same s how the radiator does except that the condenser mounts to the outside of core support top bar while the radiator mounts to the inside of same cross bar. Condenser mounts line up, radiator ones don't.... as well as everything else went together I'm thinking they just goofed on the radiator, either the pegs for the lower mounts are slightly offset (wrongly) or the U shaped cutouts on the ears of the top of the radiator are.... were the mounts on the HD radiator any different from the ones on the STD one? I cant compare that to the old radiator because that was what busted out of the original radiator, mounts aren't there to match up to any more....
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magnumman
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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2019, 05:07:01 PM »

Its got to be the radiator.  You may have to do some engineering to get it to work.
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2001 Ram QC 1500: 360cid, 2wd, K+N CAI, SCT tune, Autolite AP3923\'s, MP 1.7 rollers, MP pushrods, SST rims, Hypertech coil, 10.2mm wires, Gibson super truck exhaust, 3\" magnaflow cat, modified Y pipe, modified kegger, 3.92 LSD, MSD-6, Transgo shift kit, 4.7L Injectors, Hipotek 52mm TB, (Currently under construction for a 408 build)

POS Chevy Trailblazer 4x4, the 4x4 is the only good part. This is my Son's truck now.

2007 Chrysler 300 2.7L "Wifes car" No complaints other than it slow.

2012 Ram 5.7 Hemi Outdoorsman, 4x4, LSD, Air Bag Suspension.
donram360
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2019, 07:26:21 AM »

Yup. I drilled 2 holes in the upper core support bar and tapped them, both a 1/2" to the driver side of the original ones. EVERYTHING else lined up perfect, the AC condenser bolts to the outside of the Same upper core support tube and lined up dead nuts. So it ain't that. I used an nos/OEM AC condenser and an after market radiator that came over on the "slow boat" so I figured it would have to have something to do with it back together and running again.
Wound up having to go back and replace the trans cooler lines, they seemed to seal up fine for the 1st day and a 1/2 that I ran it then started blowing atf the next afternoon. Seems that they were sealed up fine for the 1st 20 years of life undisturbed, but didn't like being uncoupled and snapped back in. I could get both for a 4wd truck and anywhere I looked they only had one"return" one available for a 2wd.
The 4wd ones will work on all of them but they run between the motor mount and block instead of between the motor mount and frame, starter and motor mount had to come out to get them in, certainly wouldn't have been able to do so without my 2 post lift. No way no how. Had I been able to get both for the 2wd, I could have gotten them in on the ground if I would have had to
 
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donram360
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2019, 07:31:50 AM »

The only other Small issue I had in getting it back together was that when I pumped down the AC to recharge and then put the charge back in, had it blowing ice cold. But when I went to take the gauges off, the Schrader valve on the low side line stuck, and I blew my fresh charge right back out. Fortunately a new schrader for it was quite cheap, I was thinking that I might have to swap out the lineset. Glad I didn't have to.
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