Date of purchase - 4/30/05; Mileage as purchased -
Other than a little clean up I spent most of the
next month driving the Dak and getting the F-150
prepped for sale. A week after purchase I replaced
all 4 tires with
Kuhmo Ecsta 711's in the same size, 255/55-17. Much
safer in the rain now and it rides a little
smoother. They also stick quite well. This truck
handles better than my urethane bushed 5/5 slammed
Ranger GT and is almost as fun to drive as my
I'm already planning to upgrade the audio system.
The factory Infinity system is decent especially at
lower volumes but it's not quite enough for me. See
the upgrade plans on the
DAK AUDIO page.
Once the F-150 sold (first person who called!!) I
turned my attention to the R/T. First up (after I
put 1000 miles on it) was an oil and filter change
to Mobil 1/Purolator Pure One. I also added a Mobil
1 oil filler cap, maybe a silly add-on but I like it
:) Then I replaced the sparkplugs with some new
NGK's (I've now discovered that Autolites are said
to be better for this engine). For a little better
night vision I replaced the headlight and foglight
bulbs with Sylvania Silverstars.
57K+ miles: Since
the factory decals were partially missing on the
doors I looked around the web for replacements.
Someone had added a dual pinstripe in silver
(probably after the body damage repair) so I thought
I'd change all the black decals to silver. I found
some on e-bay pretty cheap and they're not bad. They
came out really good if I must say so myself.
I did buy some really nice outline ones from
Super Dak Renzoni
but I think I'll
save those if I decide to repaint.
I decided to replace the stock airfilter with a K&N
replacement filter (33-2175). I plan to replace the
whole air induction with an Intense Performance
Stage III air intake system but that may be awhile.
I'd rather replace the intake and exhaust together.
Not sure yet what exhaust to install or if I'll have
a custom one done locally. A set of Gibson, Mopar or
PPH headers might find their way on too.
I bought some extra door handles so I can paint them
and the tailgate handle body color to match. The
mirrors are already painted. I picked up an APC
white face gauge panel (e-bay again) but found I
like the Nu-Image one better. The APC panel is all
white vs the Nu-Image white gauge faces only. A more
I snagged another set of R/T wheels as all of mine
have curb damage (it came that way). I thought about
some 20's but I don't know if I want to firm up the
ride any more. Maybe I'm getting old but I've BTDT
on the stiff riding vehicles. I could change my mind
though, a set of silver 20" R/T's would look sweet.
11/18/06, 64,360 miles:
One whole year has gone by and no updates to the Dak
:( Yeah, I know less than 6K in a year but hey work
is only a 20 mile round trip. I've been working on
the Sprite more lately.
I have been collecting pieces for upgrades though. I
did buy a Nu-Image white gauge face. It definitely
is much better looking than the APC. Hopefully I'll
get it installed in the coming months! I picked up
an Xtant 603X 3/5 channel amp off e-bay. Much better
than the Hifonics and will fit better in the sub
box/amp rack. Nothing else to report but fillups,
oil changes and lots of driving fun!!
05/30/07, 66,850 miles:
I've finally added some things
to the Dak! The pictures at left show 2 cool billet
items. The battery strap and the airhat nut with the
CNC'd R/T lettering are custom items by Moore Custom
Billet. He can be reached thru the forums at
DakotaUSA.com or Dakota-Durango.com. I also
added the Volant airhat I picked up off ebay. Much
cleaner than the stock one. I managed to procure a
used Intense Performance Stage III CAI from a fellow
Dak owner. That will be installed soon. I stumbled
onto a group buy (on the Durango Owners Club site)
of possibly the last batch of PPH headers to be made
so those will be on their way in a few weeks. Slowly
but surely it's coming together. Oh yeah, Powerslot
front rotors and Hawk pads are waiting for install
as well as pair of Belltech front springs and
DJM 1" rear blocks. I'm waiting till I do the
balljonts so I can do the suspension all at the same
06/19/07, 67,362 miles:
I decided to pull the Intense
Performance Stage III CAI out of the box and get in
on the Dak. With the original supplied directions
and some detailed pictures from SLVRBLT (on the Dak
USA site) who I bought it from it was almost a snap.
The supplied rubber connector for the intake tube to
the airhat didn't fit the Volant airhat. I tried
using the flexible factory tube but it looked too
ghetto and required a ty-wrap on the can to keep it
from flopping around. I tried stretching out the IP
one a little but I need more than it'll stretch.
Have to just buy another connector.
Don't know about performance yet but it certainly
sounds faster :) I also adjusted the Throttle Valve
PPH/Mike Leach headers will be here next week, Woo-Hoo!!
A few weeks before this I also installed the mids
from the Image Dynamics CXS62 Components. The cone
on the factory Infinity on the passenger side
separated from the basket again. I didn't want to
waste time pulling the door panel off just to glue
it again. See DAK AUDIO
for pix and detail.
06/27/07, N/A miles:
I got my PPH/Mike Leach
headers today!! UPS crushed and ripped the box up
but the headers were undamaged and unmarked.
Luckily Positive Performance packs them quite well.
They are constructed very nicely. Smooth welds and
bends. If the manufacturing is any indication the
fit should go smoothly too. Here's all the pieces
laid out on the garage floor. The box behind the
headers holds the full set of Bilsteins I received
today as well. Those should be a simple bolt on
process, I hope.
I also picked up a new hose
adapter and put the Volant airhat back on with the
Intense Performance CAI. Now I gotta figure out a
way to keep the "can" from bouncing around.
07/21/07, 67973 miles:
First off, I put the stock
airhat back on. I made a mount for the IP can but it
still bounced around too much (for me at least) with
the Volant airhat and silicone hose adapter. A lot
of guys on the Dakota and Durango boards say the
stock airhat flows well so I'm not worried about it.
It still sounds sweet at WOT.
For mods, I was kind of busy. I got the Bilsteins on
front and rear. It only took about 2-1/2 hours and I
took my time. Although air tools are sweet to have
here for sure. Made really easy work of it. What a
ride difference!! I thought it would be too stiff
but it actually smoothed out the ride. I also
discovered that one of my rear shocks may have
blown. It was obviously leaking.
Next was the APC clear corner lights. They're not
totally clear as they have an orange reflector on
the side. I actually like the style. I did see a few
complaints on the boards about the fit of the APC's
but mine fit fairly decent. I do see some
"misalignment" but I think it's minor. Full
one-piece headlights are probably a better option.
The latest mod is a custom expanded metal grill. I
picked up a piece of black powder coated diamond
pattern metal at OSH. I pulled the stock plastic
grills out by snipping off the plastic "tabs". Then
I laid them out on the expanded metal and traced the
size. With various cutting tools (diagonals or
"dikes" worked best but were tedious) I cut out the
shape leaving extra material in the areas where the
grill shroud mounts. These are my "tabs" that mount
the grill pieces. It took a lot of trial and error
to get the right fit but it was worth it. Instead of
doing a remote hood release I opted to cut the grill
out for access. It's not too noticeable (I hope).
After I got the fit right and all the cuts were done
I touched up the cut ends by brushing on some gloss
black enamel. It was the right thickness and should
keep the grill from rusting in those areas. Of
course I had to add an old school R/T emblem. It
could use a repaint but it works for now.
I'm still debating whether to do a lower grill.
Still to add are the Nu Image dash, Powerslot front
rotors/Hawk pads and the PPH headers and exhaust. I
also have a carbon fiber look dash surround (e-bay!)
to install although I need to have a few other
interior pieces done to complete the look. Bell Tech
1" drop front springs, DJM 1" blocks and Energy
swaybar bushings are sitting in the parts bin
waiting for install. My big score though was a
Reflexxion steel cowl hood. Found it locally on
craiglist for about half the cost of new and it's
never been installed. Saw it on Sunday morning and
had it in my garage Sunday afternoon. Need to get it
painted though. Figure I'll do the door/tailgate
handles at the same time. The guy I bought the cowl
hood from is an automotive painter (side biz) so I
might have him shoot it.
6 months and 2300+
miles since the last update. I still haven't
installed any of the items mentioned above. Been
lazy I guess. I did score a new head unit though.
It's an Eclipse CD 7000. It has many great features.
I also picked the iPod adapter for it.
Well, even though
none of the items noted above are installed yet I
was in need of tires soon. So what to do? Of course,
a new set of 20" chrome wheels to go with the new
tires!! I have been looking at wheels for a few
years but hadn't narrowed the choices down. I
decided I really like the deep lip look. I came
Incubus Game and started checking prices. I
liked the 9" width too. Same as the stock R/T
I found out IndyD
on the DOC board has a line on a wheel distributor
offering many choices. His distributor listed the
Game but they are apparently on a long backorder. He
offered some other choices that were in stock. I saw
the Hollywood 5 (Vision Wheel/Milanni) and found my
second choice. A set of 275/45-20 Falken Ziek
S/TZ04's mounted on the 20x9 Hollywood's and they
were on the Big Brown truck headed to me.
I'm very happy with the look and the fit. The ride
isn't as bad as I thought it would be either.
It does need to be about 1" lower to fill up the
wheel well a little more. So I guess the Bell Techs
and blocks will be on the agenda soon.
The Dak isn't
lowered yet but I did get the Power Slot rotors and
Hawk pads on the front. I needed to check out a
squeak in the front end and discovered it was the
stock rotor rubbing on the wheel studs. I could have
just cleaned them up and been done with it but why?
So off came the calipers and old rotors. I had
picked up some VHT orange caliper paint so that was
the next step. I cleaned them well, shot the paint
on and let them dry overnight. The next day I popped
the Power Slot's on and remounted the calipers. I
also discovered that the caliper guide clip was
missing from the drivers side. Don't know how long
it was missing! Even though the brakes still worked
fine I decided I'd better replace it.
While doing the brakes I remembered I wanted to
replace the sway bar bushings with polyurethane
ones. The weekend after the brake job I tackled that
job. One of the rear sway bar links was worn and
rattling so it needed replacing anyway. A few guys
on the Dak-Dur board had replaced their rear links
with the Hotchkis links that come with their sway
bar kit. They sell them separate if you call them up
ask and they weren't much more than new stockers
either. It's a nice piece, all metal tubing with
greasable poly bushings. They came with everything
to bolt right up to the stock bar location. The only
difference is they use 1/2" hardware vs 3/8"
hardware which required drilling out the sway bar
I picked up some universal Energy Suspension
bushings mainly because they are greasable. It's
easier to keep any squeaks in check. Since I had to
remove the bars and I had a few cans of safety
orange paint I cleaned them up and painted them.
Adds a little color underneath that can be seen
through the spokes of the Hollywood 5's. Not sure
yet if I'll paint the drums orange. That may be too
The first week of driving with all the new pieces
and I'm impressed. It stops very well and handles
much flatter. On-ramps and off-ramps are a real
blast now. Still bedding the pads in so haven't
tried any panic stops yet.
I'm still collecting upgrades too. I grabbed a used
50mm Fastman TB off a guy on Dak-Dur. It's in great
shape. Another Dak-Dur member is porting a stock "Kegger"
intake manifold in a trade for my stock R/T wheels
and tires. This way I'll be able to keep all my
Haven't updated the
page in awhile. Mostly just driven' the Dak. However
I did finally get the Nu-Image dash in. Really
changed the look of the interior. I also popped the
carbon fiber dash surround on. Looks kinda nice. Now
I have to get the door pieces done.
With a little
Christmas bonus money I bought the Dak a Carriage
Works billet grill, upper and lower. I like the look
although I'd like to modify the lower to fit more
flush. I also picked up some clear lens headlights
complete with 80-100W bulbs. I also picked up an LED
3rd brake light/bed light. It required some very
minor modifications but fit up perfect and looks
the left - Stock on the right
Stylin Trucks had a "name your price" sale happenin'
so I called them up and ordered a Bedrug. Got it for
the lowest internet price plus free shipping. The
under rail plastic bedliner was okay but with the
tonneau cover being carpeted underneath I thought a
Bedrug would be more usable and look sweet. It fit
well and I really like the look now. It matches the
carpet style of the tonneau an almost matches the
color. Maybe I'll spray dye the tonneau carpet to
12/03/10, 85,370 miles:
A few changes since
my last update more than 1 year ago! I bought a
6000K Bi-Xenon HID light system off another Dak-Dur
member. They were a good deal, brand new never
installed too. The Bi-Xenon works like a hi-lo by
telescoping the bulb out for the " high beam" to
replicate the lo beam high beam of the halogen
lights. The 6000K temperature is kind of in the
middle and has slightly blue light. Above this they
get very blue to almost purple. These look and work
out perfect with the clear lens.
20" R/T wheels came up on e-bay for a good close out
price so I bought a set. I always liked the stock
R/T wheels and really wanted 20" ones but they were
a bit out of my price range. These repro's were
better priced before but an even better deal now. My
battery was now at least 6 years old so it was time
to replace it. I went to Wheelworks and had them
install a new Interstate battery and throw my
Falkens on the R/T wheels. I like the way it looks
now. It still needs to be lowered. I'm working on
that by picking up new ball joints and bushings to
redo the front suspension at the same time. I also
scored some brand new Hotchkis coils off ebay.
Locally too so no shipping charges. The Belltechs
will go up on the Dak-Dur board.
I'll get pictures of everything posted soon.
03/20/16, 111,222 miles:
A long time since I
have updated this page. Quite a few changes have
been made since the last post in 2010. I'll catch it
all up below.
Replaced a blown water pump. Replaced with Napa True
Flow #43034. Since I was tearing the front of the
motor off I decided to install the stage 1 ported
intake manifold with the
aluminum belly pan (HUG7700). On top of that I
installed a custom ported/polished 50mm throttle
body. This all added a little more performance and
the belly pan took care of the pesky oil leak common
on these engines. I apparently didn't document it
but sometime around May/June 2013 I installed a 200A
alternator including an extra #1 gauge cable to
handle the load. The original was still working but
when the W.P. blew it sprayed water all over the
front of the motor and covered the alternator. I
figured it was good insurance to go ahead and
replace it. Plus I needed it for the upcoming audio
mileage noted or needed:
Finally got around to doing the audio install. I had
been working on the sub box for a few months and got
it done enough to do some test fitting. Ripped out
the interior and over about a month got it all fit
up and installed. See the
Dak Audio page for details.
8/27/13, 98,888 miles:
I finally got
around to dropping it. Due to time constraints and
this being my everyday vehicle I took it in to East
Bay Frame & Axle to have them install everything and
align it. A day and a half later I had a 2 inch
lower Dak with all new Moog front suspension
components and Hotchkis springs front and rear. The
ride was definitely firmer but it handles much
better now. The Bilsteins were designed for stock
ride height (or higher) so I ordered some non
adjustable QA-1's front (TN505) and rear TN703). Had
to make some custom bushings for the rear shocks as
the options that came with them were all the wrong
size. McMaster-Carr is great for finding just what
you need. After a couple thousand miles I realized
the front needed to be stiffer as the tires were
hitting the fenders. I ordered up some TS505's which
are adjustable for compression. Much better although
I still need to dial up a little more firmness.
Still haven't taken any pictures of it lowered.
Installed Air Lift (#59508) air springs on the rear
to compensate for any heavier loads I put in the
bed. Helps in winter when I fill up the bladder in
the bed to add weight for better wet weather
Installed a Magnaflow Stainless Cat-Back exhaust
(#15657). My stock muffler was beginning to leak so
it was time. Looks good, has a little more rumble
than stock at idle but much throatier at full
throttle. The tailpipe hangs a little lower than I'd
like but that can be fixed by cutting and shortening
the rear hanger. Need a welder though.
Other than oil changes and new tires 2014 was pretty
Water pump blew again. Not impressed with the Napa
parts. Lasted just over 15K miles. Hopefully this
one lasts longer. When I was checking out the water
pump I discovered that the rubber on the harmonic
balancer was split and coming out. Too much for me
to handle so off to Greg's Automotive. One day and
all was replaced and good as new. I was trying to
find time to replace the rear brakes. I had all the
parts just hadn't found the time. Since I was taking
it in to Greg's I had him replace the brakes while
he was doing the W.P. and balancer.
The Dak is still running okay at 111K. Still passing
smog and still averaging about 12 mpg. I decided not
to install the PPH headers (noted above) since they
aren't technically legal in CA on a 2000. I also
replaced the IP Stage III cold air intake with the
stock setup for the same reason. Still using the K&N
replacement filter though.
One unfortunate thing is the clearcoat is starting
to go in more places other than the roof (hood,
tonneau, bed side). Really bummed about that. Not
sure what I'm going to do about it at this time. I
also discovered that my left clear corner was
leaking and ate up the chrome plating inside.
Doesn't reflect very well. I temporarily installed
the original stock ones but I bought some clear one
piece headlight/corner lights. Putting LED bulbs in
the turn signals and corner lights.
During this time (@ 105,061 miles) I also replaced
the front tires (they were most worn per Brian at
Mel's Tires) with Falken S/TZ-05, 275/45-20's. The
same size and same brand and style but the newer
7/22/15, 108,192 miles:
Replaced rear tires with same as the fronts.
Replaced front shocks with QA1, TS505 single
adjustable. Set about 3/4 hard it doesn't bottom out
like it did with the non-adjustables. Sold those on
3/26/16, no mileage noted:
Installed new clear headlight housings and corner
lights. Left corner light developed a leak and
destroyed the reflector. Reinstalled LED bulbs. Kept
HID bulbs in foglights. Installed LED back up bulbs.
Replaced front rotors and brake pads. Powerstop
K2139-AR8738XL/XR and Powerstop Z23-820 CF/Ceramic.
The drivers side pads were worn down to metal
scoring the rotor. This was due to a worn caliper
seal which was replaced as well. Replaced
transmission speed sensor (Dorman #917-602) to
correct transmission shifting issues. Seemed to
Replaced battery with another Interstate MTP-27. Old
one was 8 years old! Replaced rear axle speed sensor
(Standard ALS203) to try to correct transmission
shifting issues. Didn't help.
Check engine light activated. Code P1757, Governor
pressure not within limits. Took to mechanic fro
replacement. Found it was more than that. Tranny was
toast. New rebuilt transmission installed. Works
Truck sold. On to the next toy (see
Never took any
pictures of it lowered on the 20" R/T wheels.
Probably because of the peeling clear coat the truck
was no longer very photogenic.
I'll probably see it occasionally. I sold it to my
next door neighbor's uncle.