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37 Ford Street Rod on a 2003 Dodge Dakota Chassis

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37 Ford Street Rod on a 2003 Dodge Dakota Chassis

Bill in Sidney OH Bill in Sidney OH
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 02/07
Posted: 02/21/07
04:39 PM

OK, everyone advises againt it, but I'm moving forward. I just don't like doing the chassis like everyone else, plus I'm going low buck.

I've bought a 1937 Ford 2 Dr humpack body (Only) and a wrecked 2003 Dodge Dakota. Wheelbase and track should work out perfect.

I'm not sure what engine I'm going to use. Maybe a flathead or a 318 Mopar, but NOT a SBC.

Anyway, Im excited. Finally ready to do it!! Any comments or help would be very appreciated.


Burtreyn0lds Burtreyn0lds
User | Posts: 113 | Joined: 08/06
Posted: 02/21/07
05:18 PM

gotta give you respect for going off the beaten path, sounds like an interesting project, keep us updated on the status of the project and most of all good luck Smile  

trifives trifives
New User | Posts: 2 | Joined: 01/08
Posted: 01/23/08
01:47 PM

Bill in Ohio;
Have a similar interest and want to know if your project worked out for you.  

New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 01/08
Posted: 02/01/08
07:13 AM

I have a 39 Plymouth and have went away from the "standard". My set up uses a readily available 5.2 magnum motor witha 46re automatic transmission. These are highly dependable engines that produce good horsepower and unbelievable fuel mileage on the highway. Even the electrical and computer end of the swap are not bad to do. Not to mention, it will drop right into your Dakota chasis and there are still a ton of parts available in the aftermarket.  

New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 05/08
Posted: 05/10/08
06:29 PM

Hi Bill, I also am using a 1988 Dakota Regular cab with a 8' box chassis under my 1962 Ford Unibody truck. The Fords wheelbase is 122" & the Dakota is 123.5. The best part is I have done some parts research and found the 87-90 Dakota 2wd uses the same front spindle as the 81-90 Dodge 1/2 ton pickup so I can change rotor & calper and have a 5on 5.5 bolt pattern wheel, disk brakes, and power rack & pinion steering. Now for the bad news I had to go through three differant chassis to find one that was not bent they do not seem to survive a crash very well.        Good luck Another Bill  

38mag 38mag
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 05/08
Posted: 05/11/08
06:07 PM

I put a '38 Plymouth coupe body on a '93 Dakota chassis, I used the 5.2 engine, o/d trans, 4 wheel aiti-lock brakes, cruise control and anything else I could use from the Dakota. The car turned out great, it got 2 Goodguys picks. I'd post pics if I knew how.

ekimball ekimball
Enthusiast | Posts: 344 | Joined: 01/07
Posted: 05/13/08
10:45 AM

I guess I didn't realize that Dakota's were used as donors this often.  

jamesgasser jamesgasser
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 07/08
Posted: 07/31/08
07:52 PM

I also am looking at the dodge dakota truck for a chassis under a 41 Dodge Business coupe. Will this work? Anyone with ideas, I would appreciate it. Also, looking at the Volare K member for suspension but not sure if this will  work because of the short front frame on the 41 Dodge. If anyone has ideas on this before I go through the process of measuring up different chassis.

jimmothershead jimmothershead
New User | Posts: 16 | Joined: 03/09
Posted: 03/05/09
01:57 PM

Get out the pen, paper, tape measure.....but you don't want Jim's opinion of a non-SB Chevy rod.
Jim at The School of Hard Knocks since 1957  

fwms fwms
New User | Posts: 5 | Joined: 02/09
Posted: 03/19/09
08:52 PM

I'm not sure what engine I'm going to use. Maybe a flathead or a 318 Mopar, but NOT a SBC.

I'm sorry, but can you tell me what's a SBC. I'm new to the forum and am having trouble understanding the acronyms. Thanks  

fwms fwms
New User | Posts: 5 | Joined: 02/09
Posted: 03/19/09
09:14 PM

Again I apologies, but I had a senior moment back there. I was doing some of my weekly chores when it hit me. SBC...   Small Block Chevy, right?  

fast41dodge fast41dodge
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 01/10
Posted: 01/29/10
03:40 PM

Last weekend I purchased a 92 Dakota extended cab with 5.2L V-8 and plan on putting it under my 41 Dodge Deluxe Coupe. I will most likely use the 5.2L for a bit even though I have a fresh 69' 440 Six Pack w/ Stage VI aluminum heads on my engine stand and a 97 Viper Richmond six speed to put behind it. With the price of gas these days, I'm not sure how it'd work out. Last summer I ran into a guy from Vancouver, B.C. that has a 41 Dodge 2 door Sedan and he had used the Dakota chassis. He has dropped in a 408 stroker motor and built up the tranny. He changed out the rear end to a Ford 9” due to leaving the Dakota differential over about a block or so after he put in the 408 and did a little WOT testing. I guess when it hit second all hell broke loose so now he has got that fixed. His car sounds NASTY just idling. He used 2” dropped spindles which gives it a real mean rake to his car. He also removed 2” from the frame to center the wheels in the wheel wells which I plan on doing though I’m going to set my body on mine just to see if it really needs it. I also plan on using an A-body 8 3/4" rearend with Strange axles to keep it all MOPAR.

Vic Stein

Yakima, WA  

drdan524 drdan524
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 01/13
Posted: 01/06/13
03:33 PM

I realize this is an OLD thread. But I am starting the same project and was wondering if you guyd had to change the frame at all?  I am just wondering because I know a lot of the old cars had a more narrow front end.


Bill in Sidney OH Bill in Sidney OH
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 02/07
Posted: 01/25/13
05:27 PM


Many changes to the frame were required, more than I anticipated. But it's working out OK. Email me at if you want more info.