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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I had a 1991 Dodge W250 come into my possession. It's a single cab long bed with a blue and silver 2 tone. It has a 173000 miles and It's all original. I ended up selling my 2010 Jeep Wrangler JK because I didn't see the need for a gas and diesel guzzler.

I'm in the military and I'm coming up on 2 and a 1/2 years now. My job is only located on 2 bases in America. It's either, Jacksonville Florida or Whitby island Washington. Low and behold I lived in Jacksonville Florida and low and behold I was sent on a >2500 mile journey across country in a 30 year old truck.

Along the way the truck did very well. I stayed 5 miles an hour under the speed limit everywhere I went and she did just fine. As I drove through Tallahassee I didn't have a problem and then I cut North through the base of Georgia on my way to Atlanta. About halfway through Georgia my alternator was giving me some issues charging the battery.

I eventually stopped to fill up and the truck wouldn't start. I asked for a quick jump and I got right back on the road. I stopped again right at the base of Chattanooga Tennessee and again needed a jump. I continued my route swerving in-and-out of Tennessee Georgia, Alabama and then Finally cut into Kentucky. I drove 90% of the way through Kentucky until I stopped for the night.

And again just like the times before I needed a jump. I continued my journey and said to myself "I should get this alternator replaced." So I stopped in a little town called Carbondale Illinois and started my whole teardown process there. I replaced the alternator and then I go to start the truck and it CATCHES FIRE!🔥🔥🔥.

But wait there's more, I quickly disconnected it and the autozone employees helped me put out the fire. I blew up a cell in the battery, fried my fusible links, fried my voltage regulator, and toasted my alternator. After a quick fix she was right back on the road working just fine.

I got a late start on the road and stopped in the middle of Missouri that night. I continued on until I noticed my oil pressure Gauge stopped working. With it being a 30 year old truck I didn't think anything of it, it was experiencing a little needle bounce and I checked the oil and it was fine so I assumed I had a faulty Gauge. I was about 3/4 through Missouri when I noticed the issue, after checking it out I pressed on into Iowa, continued into Nebraska and stopped in Cheyenne Wyoming.

No oil leaks, no blow by, no nothin. Started her up and pushed through Wyoming into Utah, Idaho, through Oregon and into Washington.
I was at the 23 mile marker outside of Yakima Washington on I-82N when the truck seemed like it was running sluggish. I crossed over a bridge and she quit on me. Out of nowhere the engine temperature was well past hot and she wouldn't turn over. I had noticed a lot of oil coated around my leaf Spring next to my blow by hose. And pulled the dipstick out and low and behold it was bone dry.

That's right, I ran the 12 valve completely dry of oil. Me thinking that I seized up the engine called the tow truck and had them take me to town. I was dropped off at another tow truck service called "International Towing and Recovery" around the center of Yakima, I was thinking about putting oil in it and trying to turn it over but I was just worried of doing more damage. The tow truck operator, who I forget his name, said that we could dump some oil in there and "what's the worst that could happen, if it's already toast then what more could you damage?" So sure enough, after putting oil in there she started right up.

It was estimated that I drove well over 500 miles without oil and she was not happy. After a couple 100 miles of petting the dashboard saying "good girl" and "I'm sorry", She perked up like nothing even happened. I made it to whitby Island Washington just fine and safe thanks to Ol'blue Jean.

Moral of the story is, you cannot kill a 12 valve. Sorry for the story but had to put it out there. I plan on restoring her and modernizing it at the same time...don't worry I won't put 26" with rubber bands on her.

If you have any true survivor stories about your truck, 12 valve and specific doesn't matter if it's a VE or P pump let me know, cause my eyes have been opened to the sheer power of these engines.

Super Moderator
22,490 Posts
The 91's use a external regulator for the charging, the most common problem with them are the regulators case not being grounded and causes then usually to overcharge. Run a wire from the regulator case to the alternator case to help ground the 2 together. Also the wiring us under size and sometimes you need to wire a Relay in to make sure it reads battery volts so it doesn't overcharge.

The engine holds just about 3 gallons so if none shows on the dipstick doesn't really mean it's completely out.

The good thing about the 12v's they need no wires for them to run if you was to gut the FSS and use a pull cable.
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