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I know, I know – don’t quit my day job. But that really IS my dayjob – dealing with mysteries and riddles. In this case, the riddle isthe cylinder heads of the 8.0L, V10 Chrysler truck engine.

Although there aren’t nearly as many of the Chrysler V10 engines out inthe marketplace as the Ford Triton V10s, there are enough of them thatyou have probably seen them show up in your building at some point. Sincethe engine’s life span was only 10 years and ended in 2003 they havenow become "orphans" so to speak. Once that happens you know forcertain that someone is going to have to remanufacture this engine andits components.

Typically, either cylinder heads or crankshafts will begin arriving atyour door before the complete engine will. To make things easier, weare going to talk about the cylinder heads – what you need to watch outfor and what you can do about it. The best/worst part is that you onlyneed to work with one casting number.

In 1994 the V10 truck engine, which was considered a derivative of theViper engine, became the gasoline "big" horsepower/torque applicationchoice over the diesel for those who harbored ill will towards theclatter, smell, smoke and huge cost. Before you start writing hatemail, no, I’m not diesel bashing, just stating the consumer facts.

The cylinder heads used in the 1994 and 1995 model year (MY) V10applications were c/n 53005854. The intake port is the area where wewant to focus our attention. Look at Figure 1 and examine the upperportion of the port as indicated by the red circle.

As you can seethere is a very minor clearance relief for the intake manifold-mountedfuel injectors. However, with this cylinder head, it is impossible toremove or install the intake manifold without removing all of theinjectors. This obviously was not the plan when it came to servicingthis engine.

In MY 1996, the cylinder head kept that same casting number without anysuffix or prefix, however a change was made in the top of the intakeport (see Figure 2) to allow intake removal and installation withouthaving to remove all of the injectors. Based upon the number of callsthat I’ve received from engine builders not being able to reinstall theintake manifold after changing cylinder heads I thought it prudent tolet everyone know about that change.

This change is almost unnoticeableat first until you lay the heads side by side (see Figure 3). Many ofthe facilities that I have spoken with are taking the Ram by the horns,so to speak, to eliminate part of this frustration. They are using dyeand scribing the port relief shape at the top of the port. They thenremove the material at the top of the port of the 1994-’95 cylinderheads so that they match the 1996-later head.

By doing this they nowhave only one cylinder head part number that will allow assembly of theintake manifold assembly (with injectors) without the installerbecoming frustrated.

This is one of those low-tech processes: it seems that everyone is justusing a die-grinder and carbide burr to make the modification.

In this case, the answer to the riddle isn’t necessarily funny, but it will at least keep you smiling.figure 1figure 2Figure 3

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Roy Berndt
Roy Berndt has decades of machine shop experience. He is the Program Manager for PROFormance Powertrain Products, a PER in Springfield, MO. You can reach Roy at rberndt@enginebuildermag.com.