4x4 conversion

has anyone ever heard of somebody converting a 2000 dodge ram 3500 2x4 dually into a 4x4? i need a 4x4 vehicle but i cannot afford to buy one, even used, however i can easily get the 4x4 parts off of a budies wrecked truck. i took a look under my truck and the other and it seems like welding is deffenatly needed but it would b no problem

Never heard of it done; normally these things are only cost-effective in third world countries where mechanics earn less than $1 per hour.

Your best bet is to sell your present vehicle and buy whatever you have in mind. Could you elaborate why you need a 4X4 vehicle? For most duty, a good 2 wheel drive with the right tires will do.

If you have to ask, I can’t imagine you’d have enough money or access to equipment or tools to make the conversion if you can’t afford to trade for a new. Friends I knew that did that kind of work, really had to tie the vehicle up for quite a while too if it’s done in a home garage.

30 years ago it was doable, now it’s not. If you have to ask how to do, you’re not going to be able to do it yourself. There is significant fabrication involved.

A key requirement, the gear ratio in the front and rear axle must be correct. And usually they are NOT identical. A typical set-up would be 4.11 in the rear, 4.10 in the front.

You say you can not afford a 4wd truck. Have you checked your local craigslist? There are some desperate people out there now…By the time you finish your “conversion” I guarantee you have spent more money than just buying one…

i need a 4x4 because i am moving to the mountains to a home i just built and i have to cross 3 running creeks during the winter, i like my current truck too much to get rid of it

thank you for your comments, i will check the trucks to see if they are compatable. fabrication is no problem, not to mention fun, i was going to give the truck a long arm lift in the front at the same time as well

Before you convert yours you would be better to fix his with your parts.
Best bet, buy another 4x4

I would think that if you had all the parts it would be reasonable, however, are the front springs the same on both trucks? And as someone said, the differentials would have to match.

That was true 30 years ago. These days both axles are the same ratio. I haven’t seen that practice used since Ford started using the 8.8 inch rear axle, which has a 4.10 gear set available for it. The older 9 inch rear axle had 4.11 gears availiable, but not 4.10s.

Does your present truck have a limited slip in the rear ? If not, that could be reasonable project, if so you’re in business. Along with that, attach front and rear receiver hitches and a receiver hitch mount winch for lots of flexibility. I did this for one of my off road trucks and it proved very useful. You’d be surprised how well you can travel off road with good ground clearance and limited slip alone. (NOT for deep mud work though). A little lift job too, and you could still keep your “loved one” with a cheaper investment of time and money. Line the stream beds with rocks for good footing and you’re in business with this set up alone.
Best to you in your project.

Thanks jake; it seems you will actually need a 4x4. Again, I would still recommend that th least problematic solution is to sell your current vehicle and buy a good 4x4. Your mountain home will keep you busy enough with little things.

Good luck!

Is your pal’s wreck a Ram 3500? If his frame is OK, you might be able to swap the dody and whatever else is needed from yours to his.

I’ve seen a 2WD s10 turned 4x4, but it was a rock crawler. it had a tube frame and 2 1/2 ton axles with 48" tires.

If you were planning on completely rebuilding the 4WD whether it was originally 4WD or not, I guess it isn’t much more work.

I’ve heard of this being done with 2WD Subarus, but with those I think it’s just a matter of adding the 4WD parts.

I saw a thread recently where people were discussing 4WDs where the front half shafts run THROUGH the oil pan. I think that is a good illustration of how much the 2WD and 4WD models can differ.

I helped a buddy do it with his chevy 3/4ton 2wd, cost him about 4k, but we also put 1ton axles under is, but still alot of work and you have to be percise on measurements, other wise youll be dog tracking like crazy

You would be amazed what 3 Grand will get you on craigslist…Forget conversions…

Good advice,is there a Torsen style availible for this application?Anyway money spent on the fordings would be money well spent.You may never be pleased with this conversion you are contemplating-Kevin

A little googling and your model offers a limited slip as an option. If yours does not have it, it’s certainly available after market, salvage yard or dealer. The feature is well worth it and could get you what you need. You don’t seem to really be going off road but need the additional stream fording traction . This feature, and a winch for back up may be all you’ll need. As “kmccune” implies, improving stream bed for better access to your home is a no brainer first step and money better spent. When we built our house “off road”, home loan included funds for improved access. It’s a safety issue.

I’m gonna differ from my friends on this one.

If you were starting with only the 2x4 and a dream I’d say forget it. But if you have a donor vehicle with a good chassis and drive train and you can weld, then it doesn’t sound unrealistic to me. It’ll be a lot of work, but might be a fun project.