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Thread: Swapping a 4G54 for 4D55?

  1. #1

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    Swapping a 4G54 for 4D55?

    Hello everyone,

    I'm new here; I have some questions.

    I just picked up, from a friend, a 1987 Dodge Raider (2.6 gas/auto) in pretty good condition - minus the broken rod/block in the 4G54. I've always wanted a diesel and I found a 4D55 (from an 87 ranger) in my local area. There is a running 4G54 that is slightly further away, however, if this 4D55 is at all realistic this is the route I would like to go.

    This is not my normal forte... I am very experienced with high performance cars and in engine builds/EFI tuning but I've never so much as turned a wrench on a diesel engine before. So with that in mind, bring on the questions:

    1. I know this is a Ram 50 site - however, I believe the Raider and the Ram 50 have a lot in common, no?
    2. I've read that the 4D55 will "bolt in" on the Raider. I've rarely found these things true. Thoughts?
    3. Will I have a problem using my automatic transmission (A44D)?
    4. What sort of wiring does it take to get the 4D55 running? Wiring is not an issue for me, but, seriously I have no idea. Does it even have an ECU?
    5. Can anyone foresee any roadblocks I might hit doing this?

    Appreciate any and all help guys.

  2. #2


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    One of the diesel guys will probably know what needs to be done and should be able to answer your questions in a day or 2. Welcome to to the site and yes we have a few guys with the Raiders here so your more then welcome to hang out.

  3. #3

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    Appreciate the input.

    I found this thread on 4x4 wire for anyone else whose interested; its very informative:

    http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...fpart=all&vc=1


    That pretty well solved all my questions with the exception to the automatic part. Will my flex plate bot up or is it not so simple?

  4. #4



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    there are a couple of guys on here that have done the same swap that can chime in - Come on , where are you?
    Pennyman1
    The best Dodge that Dodge never made
    Living the D-50 lifestyle since 1980

  5. #5

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    Toasty and LandRaider on 4x4Wire have performed this swap and should be knowledgeable to answer the various questions. Also, Spence...who hangs out at 4xr4Wire, Pirate, and Expedition Portal under the name of 4D55 Performance Inc. is a good resource.

  6. #6

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    Thanks guys, if I can't get a reply on this thread I'll try to PM those guys.

    I actually went ahead an bought that engine. Another couple question popped up though:

    1. The engine didn't come with a harmonic balancer; it was broken beyond repair (which is the main reason the guy sold me the engine - he already repaired it once). The ranger comes with a serpentine belt set up and the raider uses a V belt set up. Will a V belt balancer off a diesel Montero fit on the crank? I assume their the same? That way I could retain my factory accessories.

    2. The engine came with what I think is a vacuum pump. Not really sure what to do with it. I assume there isn't enough vacuum in the intake to power the brake booster and that's why it exists. Any thoughts?

  7. #7



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    you need a harmonic balancer from the ranger 4d55 motor to work - the montero won't work. the vacuum pump is necessary to run the vacuum booster for the brakes - there is low to no vacuum being the truck motor is a turbo diesel - when in boost, there is no vacuum.
    Pennyman1
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    Living the D-50 lifestyle since 1980

  8. #8



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    Hey Drew, welcome to the Forum.

    Actually the forum consist of All the Mitsubishi trucks as well as the Dodge Ram50, D50, and Plymouth Arrow and more, in addition to total engine swaps of ever make and model. Fab creation is also threaded here.
    We just couldn't fit all these names in the title of the forum.

    Recian knows the diesel very well, among many others here.

    Few links that can maybe help!

    4D55 Series Diesel Engine General Workshop Manual

    A44D Transmission Cross Reference Database


    4D55 Wiring

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by rxinhed View Post
    Toasty and LandRaider on 4x4Wire have performed this swap and should be knowledgeable to answer the various questions. Also, Spence...who hangs out at 4xr4Wire, Pirate, and Expedition Portal under the name of 4D55 Performance Inc. is a good resource.
    I am in witness protection but if you need to get a hold of me you can call me at 8zero1-7two2-5five17

  10. #10



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    Sending Vinney and the Boys over with his Violin case to talk with you.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by BradMph View Post
    Sending Vinney and the Boys over with his Violin case to talk with you.

    I will have my golf clubs ready.

  12. #12



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    Quote Originally Posted by 4D55 Performance View Post
    I will have my golf clubs ready.
    Toshae,

  13. #13



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    its touche' - you have been around Camoit too long - you caught the bad spelling bug
    Pennyman1
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  14. #14



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    Hay,,, me spll good.
    Members come and members go, But the board keeps track of them.
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  15. #15

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    I believe (and hope because I'm getting ready to do the same exact swap) it bolts right up. I swapped an 84 td into a gas 4wd, easy as pie, all bolted right up..amazingly easy.I may can source some harmonic balancers if you (or anyone need one (some). It will be a couple weeks to get it, but can have one shipped with my engine, if you need me to price one for you. My engine is shipped on a pallet, and I have some spare parts coming in a crate box on the pallet (since its per pallet ship cost)..actually can ship a couple more engines they said if anyone is interested...

  16. #16

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    It will bolt into the 1st gen truck if you've got the mount brackets that go on the block for the 4d55 (rubber mounts should be the same) As for wiring all you'll need is something for the glow plugs. The modules tend to go out or get insects into them and short out. I've heard a lot of diferent things about them since they supposedly run 6v and 12v will cause them to swell in time. Some of the above links should give you info on glow plugs. Alternator and starter wiring is simple, you can use existing wiring and modify.
    You'll need a fuel filter and water separator setup. D50s have em on the firewall. You can get em from a diesel truck or make one if youre good. IDK if a cummins setup can be modified.
    The 4d55 has no ECU. The injection pump is sort of the brain for the engine. On that note you'll need a diesel truck throttle cable or modify your existing cable since they use totally different cables that screw onto the injection pump rather than link to a throttle plate like the gas engines do. I know my truck has 2 connectors on the injection pump but idk what they do or where thy go. I haven't got that far yet.
    I don't think that auto trans will bolt up to the 4d55. I do know they came with auto's. I know the 4d56's can be bought from JDM engine sites with 4wd automatics hooked to them.
    I also have yet to see if the gas and diesel electric fuel pumps run the same volume and PSI. Running a inferior or over pressure pump could take your injection pump out or cause it to work improperly.
    The swap is easy. I'm in the process of doing it. I have a whole truck with harness and all to help tho. It's been too hot here recently to continue.
    I have a truck with a 4d55 TD or I"d be looking for a 4d56T to swap. The engine has more support, less overheating issues and it's got bigger bore/stroke and it's a 2.5L

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