Chrysler Full-Size Trucks 1967-1988 Repair Guide



See Figures 1 through 12

Naturally, without the proper tools and equipment it is impossible to properly service your vehicle. It would be impossible to catalog each tool that you would need to perform each (or even most) operation(s) in this repair guide. It would also be unwise for the amateur to rush out and buy an expensive set of tools on the theory that he/she may need one or more of them at sometime.

The best approach is to proceed slowly gathering together a good quality set of those tools that are used most frequently. Don't be misled by the low cost of bargain tools. It is far better to spend a little more for better quality. Forged wrenches, 6 or 12-point sockets and fine tooth ratchets are by far preferable to their less expensive counterparts. As any good mechanic can tell you, there are few worse experiences than trying to work on a truck with bad tools. Your monetary savings will be far outweighed by frustration and mangled knuckles.

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Fig. Fig. 1: A typical Dwell/tachometer unit

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Fig. Fig. 2: Inductive type timing light

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Fig. Fig. 3: Compression gauge and a combination vacuum/fuel pressure test gauge

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Fig. Fig. 4: All but the most basic procedures will require an assortment of ratchets and sockets

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Fig. Fig. 5: In addition to ratchets, a good set of wrenches and hex keys will be necessary

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Fig. Fig. 6: A hydraulic floor jack and a set of jackstands are essential for lifting and supporting the vehicle

Begin by accumulating those tools that are used most frequently; those associated with routine maintenance and tune-up. In addition to the normal assortment of screwdrivers and pliers you should have the following tools for routine maintenance jobs:

SAE (or Metric on some later models) or SAE/Metric wrenches-sockets and combination open end-box end wrenches in sizes from 1 / 8 in. (3mm) to 3 / 4 in. (19mm) and a spark plug socket ( 1 /3 16 in. or 5 / 8 in. depending on plug type).

If possible, buy various length socket drive extensions. One break in this department is that the metric sockets available in the U.S. will fit the ratchet handles and extensions you may already have (1/4in.,3/8in., and1/2in. drive).

Jackstands for support.
Oil filter wrench.
Oil filler spout for pouring oil.
Grease gun for chassis lubrication.
Hydrometer for checking the battery.
A container for draining oil.
Rags for wiping up the inevitable mess.

In addition to the above items there are several others that are not absolutely necessary, but handy to have around. these include a form of oil dry (a cat litter like substance which absorbs fluids), a transmission funnel and the usual supply of lubricants, antifreeze and fluids, although these can be purchased as needed. This is a basic list for routine maintenance, but only your personal needs and desire can accurately determine your list of tools.

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Fig. Fig. 7: An assortment of pliers will be handy, especially for old rusted parts and stripped bolt heads

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Fig. Fig. 8: Various screwdrivers, a hammer, chisels and prybars are necessary to have in your toolbox

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Fig. Fig. 9: Many repairs will require the use of a torque wrench to assure the components are properly fastened

The second list of tools is for tune-ups. While the tools involved here are slightly more sophisticated, they need not be outrageously expensive. There are several inexpensive tach/dwell meters on the market that are every bit as good for the average mechanic as an expensive professional model. Just be sure that it goes to a least 1,200-1,500 rpm on the tach scale and that it works on 4, 6, 8 cylinder engines. (A special tach is needed for diesel engines). A basic list of tune-up equipment could include:

Tach/dwell meter.
Spark plug wrench.
Timing light (a DC light that works from the truck's battery is best, although an AC light that plugs into 110V house current will suffice at some sacrifice in brightness).
A wire-type gauge and spark plug adjusting tool.
Set of feeler blades.

Here again, be guided by your own needs. A feeler blade will set the points as easily as a dwell meter will read the dwell, but with some sacrifice to accuracy. And since you will need a tachometer anyway... well, make your own decision.

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Fig. Fig. 10: Although not always necessary, using specialized brake tools will save time

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Fig. Fig. 11: A few inexpensive lubrication tools will make regular service easier

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Fig. Fig. 12: Various pullers, clamps and separator tools are needed for the repair of many components

In addition to these basic tools, there are several other tools and gauges you may find useful. These include:

A compression gauge. The screw-in type is slower to use, but eliminates the possibility of a faulty reading due to escaping pressure.
A manifold vacuum gauge.
A test light.
An induction meter. This is used for determining whether or not there is current in a wire. These are handy for use if a wire is broken somewhere in a wiring harness.

As a final note, you will probably find a torque wrench necessary for all but the most basic work. The beam-type models are perfectly adequate, although the newer click-types are more precise.