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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Well hi folks. I'm Tristyn.

Im currently in my first engine build... or paying for one at least... "building remotely" as I like to call it....

Im up in Fort McMurray, and my friend of 20 years, Dan, is down in Edmonton is doing the actual building. Hes been a mechanic for as long as I've known him, but his specialty has been repair, not performance builds, so there are some things even he cant answer for me.

While up til now, I've never been an engine guy, I learn by doing, and jumping in deep.... as you will soon see...

So to start off, I have a 2008 ram 5.7 4x4, minor valvetrain noise at idle, quickly turned into what will be about ~12K$ project mostly due to boredom.
Im keeping the truck forever, its in GREAT condition. i could fix it for under $2000, have a bit of fun on the top end for $4000, but the bottom end would still be 13 years old.....
So screw it! start fresh, just swap it when ready, minimal downtime.

The idea is a daily driver / super street pickup. no plans on going to the track more than once, just for the laugh of it.

So picked up a donor engine from an identical vehicle, 2008 ram, 5.7, tore it open and it was a beaute! $1800

Took the block to a machinist and had it bored, agligned, line bored, decked, & dipped, frost plugs removed and tapped the holes, ect. stuff... $2000
Manley stroker kit , pistons .010 over, only size piston in stock. $3000
Stock 08 ram heads, hand ported polished by a one-armed machinist. this guy palmed the head with his one hand and handed it to my buddy Dan. LOL $2000

heres the flow rates
Font Pattern Parallel Number


doing some research about a new intake threw up some issues.... damn AC compressor is in the way... not loosing it.
so found a plan.
car timing cover, car accessory drive. electric rad fan.

So i purchased the Flex-a-lite 183 kit and installed the e-fan.
works great.
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive design Hood Bumper



got about this far when i came across a website

and would ya look at that... basically what I was planning.... 650HP... really? cool!
well this list fills in some blanks....
injector size 47 lbs/hr
throttlebody 92mm
... and... whats this? March Accessory Drive kit? oh!!!!!! thats pretty! - Chrysler 5.7, 6.1 & 6.4 HEMI : Style Track - requires car timing cover.. hmmm... lets see if there is budget for this at the end... lol

So now Im working overtime to buy the next few grand of parts....
Camshaft and valvetrain next. Dans buddy is "running some numbers" in one of his programs to aide us in our cam choice.
it will be a Compcams cam plus springs, rocker assembly.

Things still need to figure out....
Stock PCM or aftermarket?
terminator x looks like a good fit for the engine, but dont think it will play with this transmission?? not sure.. this is where im stuck at the moment.
Complicating things maybe is, im starting with the stock 454RFE, but planning on 8HP70 swap later down the road... might also do a turbo too after the tranny....
so... yeah...
thats where im at...

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Discuss... Advise.... Call me a moron...
 

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Sound like your about to have some fun. The terminator X is a good standalone unit but won't
Work with the 545rfe or the 8hp70 sadly. You could do a manual VB a518/46rh and then us it but then your guages won’t work either without swapping to the digital dash holly makes. The factory pcm can be tuned and the trans tuned also since it’s one file on that year using Diablo or HPtuners.
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Sound like your about to have some fun. The terminator X is a good standalone unit but won't
Work with the 545rfe or the 8hp70 sadly. You could do a manual VB a518/46rh and then us it but then your guages won’t work either without swapping to the digital dash holly makes. The factory pcm can be tuned and the trans tuned also since it’s one file on that year using Diablo or HPtuners.
and thats the conclusion i came to.... until i saw the signature on @Harleyc04
Font Rectangle Parallel Audio equipment Writing


color me confused....
he hasn't replied to my DM yet.
and the one thing i understand the LEAST... is trannys

looks like he might be running Powertrain Control Solutions - TCM2000 Transmission Controller
but... dunno how it talks to the holley terminator... maybe via the can-bus, but i read that the holley can-bus is proprietary...?? dunno.
 

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Proud Canadian
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you did read the post I made about the 8HP70 swap, right?
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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59 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
didnt know there was one... but just found it...
reading...
 

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Proud Canadian
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208 Posts
so the sound german kit comes with the PCS controller?

and yeah, seems like i should stick with the stock PCM with the RFE, and terminator might be the better option if I go for the zf
thanks
you can run the 8HP with the stock pcm or with an aftermarket ecu, but unless you want to write your own calibration to run the 545RFE with the pcs tcu, you are limited to the stock pcm.

the 8HP is a night and day improvement over the 545RFE though.
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
you can run the 8HP with the stock pcm or with an aftermarket ecu, but unless you want to write your own calibration to run the 545RFE with the pcs tcu, you are limited to the stock pcm.

the 8HP is a night and day improvement over the 545RFE though.
so whats the downside to stock pcm?
what made you switch to terminator x?
 

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Proud Canadian
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208 Posts
so whats the downside to stock pcm?
what made you switch to terminator x?

the main reason I went with a standalone is because of tunability, mainly startup/idle issues, I was sick of the truck stalling all the time. I also wanted a better solution for torque management, I didn't like the 2 step. I also wanted a bigger throttle body and the cable operated throttle body cost me a lot less than a similar electronic throttle body would have, and it's something different.

Plus it is so much easier to make the motor behave the way you want with an aftermarket ecm. Even just the little things are nice, I tuned an awesome chop into the idle, the truck idles like a pro mod. Good old 2 minute phantom cam swap.

There are plenty of guys running standalones on these trucks and I'm sure every one of them would tell you that there is far more adjustability than a factory pcm and you aren't constrained by the limits of the factory unit. The terminator system is only a couple grand and is super simple to install, drives like stock and is easy to tune, it beats the hell out of band-aid solutions on the factory electronics.
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
the main reason I went with a standalone is because of tunability, mainly startup/idle issues, I was sick of the truck stalling all the time. I also wanted a better solution for torque management, I didn't like the 2 step. I also wanted a bigger throttle body and the cable operated throttle body cost me a lot less than a similar electronic throttle body would have, and it's something different.

Plus it is so much easier to make the motor behave the way you want with an aftermarket ecm. Even just the little things are nice, I tuned an awesome chop into the idle, the truck idles like a pro mod. Good old 2 minute phantom cam swap.

There are plenty of guys running standalones on these trucks and I'm sure every one of them would tell you that there is far more adjustability than a factory pcm and you aren't constrained by the limits of the factory unit. The terminator system is only a couple grand and is super simple to install, drives like stock and is easy to tune, it beats the hell out of band-aid solutions on the factory electronics.
ok.. but how to run terminator x with 545rfe? thats my holdup at the moment.... and been told above.. i cant.
 

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Proud Canadian
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got about this far when i came across a website

and would ya look at that... basically what I was planning.... 650HP... really? cool!

ok this is a perfect example of "don't believe everything you see on the internet". I will tell you straight up that dude is full of shit. the power curve he is claiming, think about it for a second. just under 500 lb-ft of torque 'just off idle', a peak torque number of 550 and peak hp of just over 660. his numbers are bullshit.

with a peak torque number of 550 lb-ft, the absolute lowest rpm at which he could hit 660hp would be 6,300 and he would need 550 lb-ft to do it at that rpm, yet 550 is his claimed peak torque number. plus, the torque would have to do a spectacular nosedive immediately after 6,300rpm in order for the motor to not make a higher than claimed peak hp number.

even if he hit his peak hp at 7,000rpm (which he wouldn't do without some expensive parts running a 4.050" stroke), he would still need 500 lb-ft at 7K to be in the 660s for hp. so just off idle to 7K rpm his torque curve is so flat that it stays within 50 lb-ft?

any well designed motor will have a fairly flat torque curve, but if he is making 500+ tq just off idle and then holding onto it for that long, why not spin the motor faster and make way more hp?

and as you see, he advertises it as being dynoed with a startup tune and then the motor runs with the self tuning. so he is doing all this without even tuning the motor?!? I bet if you ask him, he can send the shuttle into orbit with Roman candles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
ok this is a perfect example of "don't believe everything you see on the internet". I will tell you straight up that dude is full of shit. the power curve he is claiming, think about it for a second. just under 500 lb-ft of torque 'just off idle', a peak torque number of 550 and peak hp of just over 660. his numbers are bullshit. even if peak hp came at the same rpm as peak torque, that would be at 6,300rpm and the torque would have to do a spectacular nosedive immediately after in order for the motor to not make a higher than claimed peak hp number. even if he hit his peak hp at 7,000rpm (which he wouldn't do without some very expensive parts running a 4.050" stroke), he would still need 500 lb-ft at 7K to be in the 660s for hp. so just off idle to 7K rpm his torque curve is so flat that it stays within 50 lb-ft? and as you see, he advertises it as being dynoed with a startup tune and then the motor runs with the self tuning. so he is doing all this without even tuning the motor?!? I bet if you ask him, he can send the shuttle into orbit with Roman candles.
umm... flat torque curve? stays within 50ft-lbs? where did ya see that?
are you talking about this dyno run from the youtube video he has on the page?
honestly 20% of what you said is English to me....
still learning... gonna have to have my buddy Dan translate and interpret.
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and what about my question from 2 posts up?
 

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Proud Canadian
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ok.. but how to run terminator x with 545rfe? thats my holdup at the moment.... and been told above.. i cant.

as I said in an earlier post, unless you are going to write your own calibration to run the 545RFE with the pcs controller, you are limited to the stock pcm. as far as I know, there is no standalone for the 545RFE. disclaimer: I have never looked for a standalone for the 545RFE.
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
as I said in an earlier post, unless you are going to write your own calibration to run the 545RFE with the pcs controller, you are limited to the stock pcm. as far as I know, there is no standalone for the 545RFE. disclaimer: I have never looked for a standalone for the 545RFE.
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like this?
 

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Proud Canadian
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umm... flat torque curve? stays within 50ft-lbs? where did ya see that?
are you talking about this dyno run from the youtube video he has on the page?

yes, I am referring to what he said in his video.

just under 500 ft-lb of torque just off idle.
peak torque number of 550 ft-lb.
peak hp in the 660's.

horsepower is a simple equation.
HP=(TQxRPM)/5252

if his peak hp is in the 660s, the lowest rpm possible for him to be in the 660s for HP is 6,300 and that is if his highest claimed (550) torque value was at that rpm. if his torque peak were lower than that, he would need to turn more rpm to hit a HP number in the 660s. if he ran the motor to 7,000 rpm he would still need 500 lb-ft of torque to be in the 660s for HP at 7K rpm. and if he were shifting his torque curve higher and hitting his peak HP north of 7,000rpm, he wouldn't be making 500 ft-lb off idle. and speaking of idle, that motor idles way too smooth to have enough cam to keep making power above 7K rpm. and if he is reliably spinning it that fast with that much stroke, and this is a pan to intake long block with all electronics, wiring, and standalone, it is going to cost more than he is asking for it. and he claims those power numbers without a full tune.

I'm not saying he's an idiot or that he doesn't know what he is doing, I am just saying that his claimed numbers are highly suspect. Going by everything that he is saying, it just doesn't really add up.
 

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Proud Canadian
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View attachment 50305
like this?

Yes I am aware that PCS sells a harness. You need a calibration to load into the PCS controller to run the transmission.
 

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2008 Ram 1500 4x4 5.7 for now....
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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Yes I am aware that PCS sells a harness. You need a calibration to load into the PCS controller to run the transmission.
confused...?
post back you said "as far as I know, there is no standalone for the 545RFE"
now saying you "know about the PCS harness"

is the PCS controller not a standalone TCM?
 

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Proud Canadian
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confused...?
post back you said "as far as I know, there is no standalone for the 545RFE"
now saying you "know about the PCS harness"

is the PCS controller not a standalone TCM? or did you mis-speak?

a harness does not give you the ability to control the transmission and drive the truck. a harness gives you the ability to plug the harness into the transmission and tcu. you need a proper calibration in the tcu in order for it to control the transmission. yes you can order the tcu and yes you can order the harness and you can plug it in, but it will not operate the transmission without the proper calibration loaded into it.
 

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Stu
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ok this is a perfect example of "don't believe everything you see on the internet". I will tell you straight up that dude is full of shit. the power curve he is claiming, think about it for a second. just under 500 lb-ft of torque 'just off idle', a peak torque number of 550 and peak hp of just over 660. his numbers are bullshit.
Have to agree with you on this one.
 
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