Tell me why I shouldn't have bought a 77 dodge m880
Picked up a military M880 pickup today that is in pretty good shape. 43K miles. Some work needs to be done on floor as it is rusting but the rest of the body has no rust at all. Has dents and dings but no big deal. Painted solid flat OD, good wrangler skins on it. Needs a new battery, the old gas drained and needs a tune up as it runs rough but all electrical works. I paid $800 for it. I know the 318 engine is loved by many but please inform me of any big detractors with these trucks besides no power steering.
I can't say for sure on the 880, but I owned two Dodge 4x4s from that era. Forgive me, I'm not a mechanic, but there is a short drive line from the transfer case to the front differential iirc. When they get worn they can let go (mine did). Also, I was told that the full time 4x4 on those is always turning....never truly "out" of four wheel drive. Again, not a mechanic, but I did see two mid-late 70s Dodge front ends have issues.
I'm not sure about the military versions, but I know some of the full-time civilian models were bad on wheel bearings because they very undersized for the truck. I remember helping rebuild my cousin's front end and the bearings were about the size of the ones on our company Ranger. As for the full-time transfercase, Milemarker should still sell a kit to convert it to part time 4wd, should help on mileage. I believe my cousin eventually swapped out the hubs for Chevy ones so he did not have to modify the steering, and he swapped in a Chevy rear end so the tires matched. With a little work, you will have a tough truck on your hands.
a couple of the voly depts here had them as brush trucks. HOLY HELL they were beast to steer at slow speeds. finally had enough problems with them everyone dumped them for newer trucks with power steering and selectable 4wd systems.
i owned a 78 pwerwagon. pretty much exactly what you got.
318 single barrel
4 speed but the 1st gear is so low its almost a 3 speed.
NP203 transfer case- this the full time, no locking hubs deal. should have the 4l,4h,2h and 2l shifter on the floor.
front end is the weak link. The hub/wheel bearing are shitty small and the hubs use a cone style bearing/seals and a ball knuckle to take apart vs the typical horseshoe shaped ones you see on fords,jeeps and other trucks later on..so you end up with leaks...
sides that . the thing ran like a champ and could tow a battleship.
that said i just passed up a 1970 dodge w200 3/4 4x4 that was an old airforce the FD truck, 38k miles on it...but it had aleaking fron end seal...which i dont feel like replacing ( paying for) so i passed - guy was aksing to much for it.
nice truck though....
The 318 engine and the 727 trans are a good combo. Like everyone else said the front bearings/hub design is not very heavy duty. You can hook it up with power steering from a junk yard.
I bought one in 1993 from a state auction. It was converted to run propane. And had a Warn winch and bumper set up and home made bull bars to protect the sides of the fenders. Good truck overall.
Go over to www.ramchargercentral.com and read all about them.
There is no site with more information, as well a helpful people, regarding all the Dodge trucks.
Thanks for all the replies so far guys.