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Old 09-26-2013, 08:43 AM   #1
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2.5L Manual to 5.2L Auto Engine Swap Write-Up

PLEASE FORGIVE ME IF THERE IS ALREADY A THREAD FOR THIS! I found similar threads but nothing specific to my exact situation.

I bought a 97 TJ 4 Cyl 5 Spd last week and had to tow it home because my driver had to bail at the last minute. I used a tow dolly from uHaul and to make a long story short, I forgot to take the Jeep out of 2nd Gear after I loaded it up - I drove 4-6 miles at 55MPH I knew immediately what the sound was when I heard it and thought I had just thrown $5200 down the drain.

I did some research and was going to just put a 4.0L from a Cherokee. However, more people said if you are going to do an engine swap, you should just go with a V8. After hours and hours of research and not quite the same scenarios, I am almost there, but not quite sure on everything I need to have in order to make this happen.

Here's what I have:

Rebuild - 97' Wrangler 2.5L Engine
97' Wrangler AX-5 5 Speed Manual Transmission 97' Wrangler NP-231 Transfer Case

Donor - 97' Magnum 318 V8 Engine
97' Ram 318 V8 Wiring Harness
97' Ram 318 V8 PCM
98' Dakota 46RH 4 Speed Auto Transmission
98' Dakota NP3500 Transfer Case


Other than motor mounts and electrical tape, a few band aids and time, can anyone tell me if there is anything bless I'd need in order to complete this engine swap?Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!!!

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Old 09-30-2013, 10:42 AM   #2
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Surely someone knows a little something about this? Please, any help would be appreciated!

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Old 09-30-2013, 01:05 PM   #3
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So once the motor, tranny and xfer case are in, you will need to figure out exhaust, drivelines, stronger rear axle, control arms, gearing.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:55 PM   #4
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The NP 3500 is a transmission... Not a transfer case. The Dakota shoud use the same transfer case as jeeps. The NP 231
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Old 09-30-2013, 03:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Dextreme View Post
So once the motor, tranny and xfer case are in, you will need to figure out exhaust, drivelines, stronger rear axle, control arms, gearing.
This is it really. Just remember a 5.2 swap in a Jeep is a 5.2 swap in a Jeep so there really isn't much difference in them other than maybe trans and personal suspension options.
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Old 10-01-2013, 08:28 AM   #6
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Sorry I don't what I was thinking when I said NP3500. And honestly as if yesterday, some things changed.

Here's what I have now:

I just bought a 97 TJ with a blown 2.5L standard. I also just bought a '01 Ram 318 5.2L engine with the 46RE transmission and NP231 transfer case. The wiring harness, PCM, alternator, AC compressor, blower, and stock headers also came with the donor motor.

I have read several forums and some are close but none are exactly what I am doing part for part. Can you give me a little bit of direction here? I am not a mechanic by no means (I own a security business) but I follow directions well. Electrically I am very savvy but knowing what mechanical parts to exchange, etc.

Basically here are my questions:

What make and model radiator do I buy?
Since the transfer case came with my donor do I need to change to a different transfer case?
If I go with an electric fan, I don't have to alter the stock driveshafts, right?
I have heard mixed feelings about replacing headers. Which ones should I get?
What is your preference on motor mounts?
Will the stock skid plate bolt up to the tranny/transfer case without mods? If mods are needed, which ones?
On the wiring harness and PCM from the donor, do you have a wiring diagram?
Are there any electrical/mechanical do's and don't's that immediately cross your mind?
Again, I have the 97 TJ and 01 Ram, anything incompatible?

I know this is more than just picking your brain but I am truly at a loss here and am not sure where I should start. Any information you have would truly be helpful. Thank you and God Bless!
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:33 PM   #7
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Hey brother good to see you back in a jeep I have no valuable input here but if you need help with the build holler at me!!!
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:04 PM   #8
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Check out this this...while the motor is different, you are going to find the process to be similar.

2000 TJ 5.3LSX wrangler
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:34 AM   #9
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Hey what's up jmcc! Haven't seen you guys in a while, and the way this is going, it'll be a little while still!

Dextreme I really appreciate the link - definately some good info there. I'll do a status update soon
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:41 AM   #10
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Very helpful thread!

I am also a member of Jeepforum.com and I was told to visit this thread - very very helpful indeed!

Wrangler Magnum V8 Discussion - JeepForum.com
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:31 PM   #11
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Completely removed engine wiring harness today. Labeled every connection point for future reference. I have the wiring harness from the donor 5.2L. I have read where I should lay out the wiring harness on a 4x8 sheet if plywood lengthwise from the TJ and then do the same thing with the donor to see how similar they are. I also read how it's easier that way to make the proper splices with this setup. My only real apprehension is with my REAL setup: my TJ was a 2.5 manual and the magnum is a 5.2 auto. I have also subscribed to the Mitchell1 site for access to the wiring diagrams. I figured for $16.99/month I could download then but I can't figure out how to or even print.

Anyone know what wires splice to what and/or if there are any programming changes needed to make sure my PCM and the magnum PCM talk from 2.5 manual to 5.2 auto?
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevelucas View Post
Completely removed engine wiring harness today. Labeled every connection point for future reference. I have the wiring harness from the donor 5.2L. I have read where I should lay out the wiring harness on a 4x8 sheet if plywood lengthwise from the TJ and then do the same thing with the donor to see how similar they are. I also read how it's easier that way to make the proper splices with this setup. My only real apprehension is with my REAL setup: my TJ was a 2.5 manual and the magnum is a 5.2 auto. I have also subscribed to the Mitchell1 site for access to the wiring diagrams. I figured for $16.99/month I could download then but I can't figure out how to or even print.

Anyone know what wires splice to what and/or if there are any programming changes needed to make sure my PCM and the magnum PCM talk from 2.5 manual to 5.2 auto?
No expert by any means but I think u will use the pcm from the v8 and that will get rid of the one from the 2.5 so u won't have to worry about it as far as the computer knows it's still in a ram if u use the ram motor transmission and computer.
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:56 PM   #13
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No expert by any means but I think u will use the pcm from the v8 and that will get rid of the one from the 2.5 so u won't have to worry about it as far as the computer knows it's still in a ram if u use the ram motor transmission and computer.
Thanks for the input! Anyone have experience doing this same swap or close?

What's weird is I have years of experience in the low voltage world (security, cameras, access control, etc.) and hardly any mechanical and the mechanical seems easy to me but the electrical I'm most worried about.
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:58 PM   #14
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Here's what I started with

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Here's the tear down


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I'll update more pics as I progress.
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Old 10-03-2013, 12:20 AM   #15
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Brother you should take a trip over to Mena and visit Hotwire Auto I'm sure they can tackle that wiring for ya and you won't have to worry a wink I'm also working on a flat to the frame tummy tuck and I need a guinea pig if your interested
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Old 10-03-2013, 02:30 AM   #16
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No expert by any means but I think u will use the pcm from the v8 and that will get rid of the one from the 2.5 so u won't have to worry about it as far as the computer knows it's still in a ram if u use the ram motor transmission and computer.
Incorrect he will need both as the V8 will not talk to the dash panel.


For the radiator you may be fine with one you have. Many guys can keep it as the 4cyl and 6 cyl rad are the same. Keep the TC from the donor since it matches trans.
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Old 10-03-2013, 02:36 AM   #17
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Sorry I don't what I was thinking when I said NP3500. And honestly as if yesterday, some things changed.

Here's what I have now:

I just bought a 97 TJ with a blown 2.5L standard. I also just bought a '01 Ram 318 5.2L engine with the 46RE transmission and NP231 transfer case. The wiring harness, PCM, alternator, AC compressor, blower, and stock headers also came with the donor motor.

I have read several forums and some are close but none are exactly what I am doing part for part. Can you give me a little bit of direction here? I am not a mechanic by no means (I own a security business) but I follow directions well. Electrically I am very savvy but knowing what mechanical parts to exchange, etc.

Basically here are my questions:

What make and model radiator do I buy?
Since the transfer case came with my donor do I need to change to a different transfer case?
If I go with an electric fan, I don't have to alter the stock driveshafts, right?
I have heard mixed feelings about replacing headers. Which ones should I get?
What is your preference on motor mounts?
Will the stock skid plate bolt up to the tranny/transfer case without mods? If mods are needed, which ones?
On the wiring harness and PCM from the donor, do you have a wiring diagram?
Are there any electrical/mechanical do's and don't's that immediately cross your mind?
Again, I have the 97 TJ and 01 Ram, anything incompatible?

I know this is more than just picking your brain but I am truly at a loss here and am not sure where I should start. Any information you have would truly be helpful. Thank you and God Bless!
Not sure what you meant about fan and driveshafts. They don't effect each other. Headers I'll leave to those who know for sure. I have brown dog motor mounts and love them. Stock skid may need redrilled.
Electrical do: use heat shrink and solder, double check it all, use fusable links, don't use wire nuts, don't leave extra wire hanging (trim to fit, but not banjo string either) don't run wires through metal without rubber grommet.
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Old 10-03-2013, 12:01 PM   #18
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unless you go to an electric fan they are related cuz the placement of the engine dictates how far between radiator and fan and how long both shafts are from transfer case to axle pinion. just food for thought bud
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Old 10-03-2013, 10:17 PM   #19
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True but you better hope the E fan actually works for your needs before moving the motor up. Sure would suck to mount the motor up the find out the e fan isn't enough and now a mechanical fan won't fit. Honestly never thought about the spacing factor.
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:38 AM   #20
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True but you better hope the E fan actually works for your needs before moving the motor up. Sure would suck to mount the motor up the find out the e fan isn't enough and now a mechanical fan won't fit. Honestly never thought about the spacing factor.
I've read where what I need to do is bolt line the hole driveline (motor/tranny/transfer case) up to the transfer case bolt holes and work back towards the front to find motor mount weld points. From there install an electric fan and use the 4.0 fan shroud to contain the blowing action and it works quite well. That's been stated in several different threads I've read so I'm thinking about going with that???
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Old 10-04-2013, 12:42 AM   #21
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I'm not as concerned about the mechanics lining up (I know sounds weird) as I am the electrical stuff. Even though I have access to the FSM wiring diagrams I either am thinking too much into it or it's just as I think : complicated. The tidiness thing I get, I wouldn't have it any other way but neat . But what I'm concerned with is what wires am I splicing exactly? Which 13-16 wires? Is it splicing TJ harness to Magnum ECM or Magnum harness to TJ ECM? Or both? Just need a clear answer.

Also, will I have to modify the exhaust?
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:48 AM   #22
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Got the motor and transmission and transfer case out.



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Old 10-06-2013, 09:49 AM   #23
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I was told I can't use the ram NP231 transfer case because the ram version doesn't have a speedo gear and a spiral gear, but I did need to take out the input shaft and install it in my Jeep NP231 TC, then bolt it up to the 46RE transmission.

I was also told I probably wouldn't be able to use my drive shafts so put in a SYE and get a new shaft. My method of choosing the right location for the motor mounts was to work from back to front: bolt up drive shaft, work forward till I got to the motor mounts, mark them, and then weld em up. Anyone have a better solution for this?
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Old 10-06-2013, 11:34 AM   #24
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you shouldn't allow the driveshafts determine motor placement driveshafts are relatively cheap put the motor where it needs to be to allow access for maintenance i.e. sparkplugs, oil filter etc. then build from motor back and purchase driveshafts to fit your build i think you will be happier in the long run
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Old 10-06-2013, 12:44 PM   #25
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Never done anything like this but dreamed about it for several vehicles. Sucks you were forced into doing it but I hope you get it figured out and are happy with it in the end!
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Old 10-06-2013, 06:03 PM   #26
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Also, will I have to modify the exhaust?
Pretty sure your exhaust will have to be custom from the motor all the way back.
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Old 10-07-2013, 08:07 AM   #27
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You have obviously done your research and know what needs to be done. If you cut corners now it will cost you in the long run.
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Old 10-08-2013, 09:07 AM   #28
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You have obviously done your research and know what needs to be done. If you cut corners now it will cost you in the long run.
I'm trying to be simple, effective, reasonable. I'm doing an engine swap not a complete overhaul of the Jeep from frame to top. Thank you for your support though and I'll be sure not to ask for your help. On a side note I have opened the same question and issues on Jeep Forum

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f9/en...-help-1639889/

and have nothing but good help from tons of people, except some deviations trying to make upgrade suggestions. I expected a little more out of this forum since it is wrangler specific. At least over there I haven't had to deal with people like RnEmOver, yet. The only thing I was trying to accomplish here is understanding and a little guidance on something I've never done before or helped do for that matter. Any input from this point forward that would go towards the aid and assistance in information would be very appreciated.
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Old 10-10-2013, 03:34 PM   #29
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I'm trying to be simple, effective, reasonable. I'm doing an engine swap not a complete overhaul of the Jeep from frame to top. Thank you for your support though and I'll be sure not to ask for your help. On a side note I have opened the same question and issues on Jeep Forum

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f9/en...-help-1639889/

and have nothing but good help from tons of people, except some deviations trying to make upgrade suggestions. I expected a little more out of this forum since it is wrangler specific. At least over there I haven't had to deal with people like RnEmOver, yet. The only thing I was trying to accomplish here is understanding and a little guidance on something I've never done before or helped do for that matter. Any input from this point forward that would go towards the aid and assistance in information would be very appreciated.
I'm sorry I offended you, actually no I'm not. Anyway we gave you answers and to me it seems like you keep trying to go the cheap route. Using an electric fan just so you don't have to modify your driveshafts seems like you are trying to sham out instead of doing it right. But what do I know having done a engine swap that was so detailed that even PBB links to it and 5 years later I still have people thanking me for the thread and vendors have given me parts just so I would do a write up on their product like I did my swap.
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Old 10-10-2013, 06:21 PM   #30
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I'm in the middle of this swap as well. I can tell you are on th eright path. Bolt the entire new driveline to gether, drop in place to see what's going on. Once I done that I could really get my head wraped around what I've read. I used the AA mounts in the recomened loactions and fabbed a bracket to attach the 46RE to. In doing this I had to modify the input shaft on the Jeep's 231 and make it shorter. My drivehafts work I think beacuse it's still stock form, no lift yet. I have plenty of room to run a mechanical fan but I could not find a ZJ fan at the time, so I got the Mopar E-fan to fit into a 4.0 shroud. I also couldn't make the Durango exhaust manifolds work, so I went with the summit headers. I had to get a little creative with the coolant hoses too. I'm currently to the point of dealing with the wiring and not enough time to do it. I can help with some advise, but my no means am I'm an expert at this swap yet.

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