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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3069745
08/19/22 11:18 PM
08/19/22 11:18 PM
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I didn't take a lot of pictures of the body work process. The fill, sand, fill, sand, process doesn't relate well in pic form, especially the way I do it. I fill too much, wait too long so it gets really hard to sand, then sand too much, then repeat.

To shorten a long story up, my body work has levels.
Level 1) I start out doing body work with the intension of making it as straight as possible. That lasts about a month.
Level 2) Straight may not be so important after all, smooth is better. Yea, lets make it smooth. That lasts about 2 weeks.
Level 3) Smooth my be over rated, sort of smooth is OK. It deteriorates pretty much daily after that.
Level 4) the point where one color sounds good.
Level 5) I don't care, paint the stupid thing.
Level 6) Paint it or I'll buy a new brush and paint it myself.

Pic 1-4) So somewhere near the end of July, I reached level 4. These pictures were the day it was headed for my buddy's shop for paint. I'm too cheap to pay him for something I can do, even if I really don't want to do. The concept was to cover it with high build primer (one color), then I would DA it with 400 and then it would get painted. A week at the most! I could handle that. But...

At his shop, he determined it really needed to be sanded with 220 on the Da (I went to 180). Reluctantly, I did the truck in 220.
After the 220, we discussed primmer. His feeling was that because there was still so much bare metal, and because I wasn't sure what or when the inside of the bed was getting done, it would be better to spray epoxy primmer on the truck. Then we would block the truck with 380. and spray it with the high build. We turned out to be me. The block sanding showed me that IF I do another paint job, I need to invest in better sanding blocks, the one's I have are too flexible. Week one comes to an end, he was going to prime with the high build on Monday, and I could hit it with 400 Tuesday.

The primmer didn't get done Monday, he had an emergency repair on his son's car that had to leave for CO Tuesday morning. It ranked higher then my body work, and I was OK with that. He also determined that we needed to spot fill a few pinholes in my body work, and he wanted to redo some of the quick seam sealer work I did when the roof repairs were done (they looked pretty sloppy now). I informed him I was at level 5, and maybe even level 6. his comment was "Good! Now go home, and come back on Thursday. He was going to redo the seam sealer, fill the pin holes and a couple other things. Gene

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3069746
08/19/22 11:26 PM
08/19/22 11:26 PM
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This is what I came into the shop seeing Thursday morning. Pics 1-4.

Thursday was 400 on the DA followed by a scuff of all the areas the DA couldn't get into, and a spot sand on one rear fender edge that wasn't quite right. We really only had a few small spots where I broke through to bare steel, and we spot primed these. Thursday was a short day. He was going to clean up the shop to prepare for paint.

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3069749
08/19/22 11:48 PM
08/19/22 11:48 PM
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This morning I removed the paper and tape so we could blow the body dust off, then re-tape, wet wipe the dust off before the tach cloth to the entire truck.
After lunch, the paint got applied.
Pics 1-4 After the 1st coat! He applied two coats,
2011-2016 Jeep Cosmo blue single stage Acrylic Urethane.
The truck will sit in his shop until Monday when I will remove the paper & tape, and reattach the hood, lights, and plates. Then it gets driven home to get the freshly painted low gloss black rear bumper, and running boards, and the chrome front bumper installed.
I'm pretty excited!

I will post up pictures after I get it put back together early next week. Those close by will be able to pick it apart grin at the Mopars on the Mississippi in Dubuque IA Sunday Aug 28, 2022.

Perfection was not the goal (but it looks pretty good right now). This is my winter driver and work truck. it will be driven on salt covered roads through the winters.
Going to be the best dam 49 Dodge truck on the road through the winter of 2022/2023. Gene

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3069788
08/20/22 08:36 AM
08/20/22 08:36 AM
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British Columbia, Canada
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Gene, thank you for posting. Nice to hear from you. I always enjoy your posts and commentary (often I have the same feelings as you do). Especially about body work! mad
You also help to motivate me to keep at my project, that seems to have grown in complexity and length the older I get.

I have a question that is not of much interest to most people so I am going to send you a private message.

Thanks, Ray.

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3069864
08/20/22 12:40 PM
08/20/22 12:40 PM
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moparx Offline
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your truck turned out great Gene ! up
can't wait to see it back together.
are you going to do anything to the under side to protect against road salt/brine mix, such as an oil coat ?
my body work skills consist of a big hammer, a bigger hammer, a really BFH, and an assortment of pry bars and lots of cuss words...............
beer

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: moparx] #3070320
08/21/22 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by moparx
your truck turned out great Gene ! up
can't wait to see it back together.
are you going to do anything to the under side to protect against road salt/brine mix, such as an oil coat ?
my body work skills consist of a big hammer, a bigger hammer, a really BFH, and an assortment of pry bars and lots of cuss words...............
beer


My buddy called my Sat morning and told me the paint was dry, and I could take the truck home that day if I wanted to. He helped me put the hood on, and I put the rear plate & lights on, and drove it home. I think he just wanted it out of his shop. Anyway, is sitting at home, in my garage, but I don't plan on putting the running boards & bumpers on it until Monday. I didn't take a pic of it outside.

It looks a whole lot better out in the sun! I too can't wait to see it complete! The running boards and rear bumper have been stripped to bare metal and redone. I do want to raise up the front bumper about 3" to 4". its too low to protect anything (not that it would protect much anyway, but might save the nose piece from a parking lot bump).

When I built the truck, I stripped clean the entire underside of the front fenders to bare metal, then gave them 2 coats of rust converter, two coats of primmer, and two coats of brush on black paint. Then I made inner wheel wells that cover the entire tire area that bolt up inside of the fenders. Those inner fenders were painted on both sides before last winter. Much of the inner fenders was new metal, so little other then painting, not much could have been done in the time I had, before the weather turned, pretty early last fall.

Here they mix a little sand with the salt/slime mix, so the tires did a minor sand blast to the inner fenders that was inline with the tire sand throwing path. There is an area about 6" wide on the inner fenders that has a surface rust/remaining paint area. Before this winter, I intend to pull both inner fenders, insect them, and readdress the surface protection. I may cover them with bed liner, or spray on rubberized undercoating, or simply plan on repainting them yearly, depending on what the look like (and what the underside of the fenders look like) once the inners are off. The truck sits on my cement driveway, underside oiling doesn't have much appeal at this point, but that might change once I see what I have after a single winter of use. I think the biggest thing is going to be protecting the inner fender finish from the sand blasting effect from the tires throw the sand. I also painted the inside of the rear fenders, they look about the same as the front inner fenders, about a 6" wide area inside the 9" wide rear fenders.

About that hammer thing... I had the advantage of being a 3rd year auto shop student in a school that you had to be a sophomore before you could get into auto shop. I also had the opportunity to be one of only 8 guys that had that option at that time. Those of us that were 3rd year students got to choose a different topic related to the automotive industry for each 1/4 of our 12th grade class. As such, my one buddy (also in his 3rd year) and I did an auto body 1/4. We were taught the proper way to braze (& gas weld), hammer and dolly dents, spread and sand filler, and prepare a vehicle for paint (we couldn't actually paint there, would never had cleared the front office, not really sure how we got to actually do body work to tell the truth). BTW, we both Aced that 1/4. I also did a 1/4 on tires (radial tires were just coming out), a 1/4 on automotive steering and suspension, and a 1/4 on automotive brakes. I was working in a garage that did all that stuff at the time. In addition to the actual in class work, we had to do a 10 page write up, complete with pictures and documentation. It was a fun year! Gene

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3070471
08/22/22 02:05 PM
08/22/22 02:05 PM
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there was no auto shop in my high school. we had wood shop and basic electrical shop, and both classes were taught by teachers that were looking more toward retirement than teaching.
i got a job at a body shop in 1968, and that lasted until 1972 when the owner closed the shop and moved out of the state to take a job with an insurance company chasing fraudulent claims.
it was during this time period i bought my charger as a total, and learned how to tackle a large project. the guys that worked at that shop were a great bunch, and i am proud to say i am great friends with the shop foreman and his wife to this day.
back then, as i had little body work experience other than bolting on fenders and other removable parts, at first i was assigned the task of floor sweeper/general cleanup guy and "gofer".
i gradually got to help sand vehicles for paint jobs and did a lot of masking. i was also assigned the job of tow truck driver. i enjoyed that a lot !
somewhere around 1969 or early 1970, the owner bought a small Texaco gas station a few blocks away, and moved the frame machine from the main shop to the gas station. i was then assigned the job of managing the gas station from 3pm until 10 or 11pm closing time, depending upon how busy we were on any particular day.
the frame machine was run by an old German guy, and this was where i started to learn the basic skills i have today. as the shop specialty was buying and repairing totals, almost all required some pulling plus some "heat and beat" technology. biggrin
i really enjoyed the techniques used on the frame machine to get things back into position, so a mangled mess looked like a car [or truck] again. i was very disappointed [and somewhat sad] when the shop closed.
after that, i dumbed around with short stints working at the local truck stop and a house trailer manufacturer, finally landing a job with Rockwell International in the next town over.
thus beginning my machinist career the day after Christmas, in 1973. from this day forward, i learned to design parts as well as make them from various kinds of materials. this helped greatly in fabricating hot rod parts, and after shift, i could use the shops equipment to do so. after almost 45 years [almost all of it the graveyard shift - thus becoming a vampire laugh2], i graduated into retirement.
beer

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: moparx] #3070582
08/22/22 08:00 PM
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I got at it this morning and put on the running boards and the rear bumper. I want to raise up the front bumper about 4" because its simply too low to be of any use. One time last year, while I was dri9ving the truck, I had parked in a lot rows of cars two deep. When I cam out of the store, there was a Chevy pickup backed into the space in front of me, really close to the front end of my truck. When I looked, the ball on his trailer hitch was only about 2" from the nose piece on my truck, my front bumper was under his hitch. That was the point I decided I needed to raise up the bumper.

My entire truck sits about 10" - 12" lower than this truck would have originally sat. The nose piece (its one panel that attaches to the front edge of the front fenders and covers the entire nose of the truck ahead of, and below the hood. That nose piece has cut outs from the bottom of the piece up 6" and 4" wide on each side for the bumper brackets to protrude through. The original Dakota 4x4 frame was cut off just in front of the radiator support mounting holes, and that cut off frame is about an inch behind the nose piece. The Dakota's frame horns would have been just under the headlights, would have been centered between the turn lights and the grille openings, and in my opinion would have been much too high for this truck. As such, I added simple angle iron brackets to the Dakota front crossmember out through the original nose bumper mount cutouts and made brackets to support the chrome bumper. simple and easy, but pretty low. The bottom of the bumper has made contact with a few road dips here in town. I've made the decision to simply modify the existing bumper brackets and raise up the bumper after the brackets come through the original cutouts. I spent most of the afternoon scratching my head trying to figure out exactly I was going to do that. I think I have a plan, I'll know tomorrow... At this point everything is dune except the front bumper, and detailed cleanup, inside and out.
So pictures or it didn't happen, right?
Pic 1-4.
Pic 4 Shows the front nose piece. To put things into perspective, the aluminum radiator is sitting on the Dakota radiator support, which is between the Dakota front frame rails. The Dakota frame kicks outward at that point! As it is, the Dakota frame ends just in front of the sheet metal. When I first put the truck together, the bumper bolted to the frame extensions located in the cutouts, the top of the bumper was about an inch above the frame extensions. The new bumper location will be directly in front of the larger openings in the grille, below the radiator. I believe most of the frame extensions will be covered by the bottom of the bumper, but if not, I might beef up the extensions and add pull hooks on the frame extensions under the bumper. When I'm all said and done, the front bumper will still be a bit low, I believe the top edge will be in the 15" of the ground range.

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3070585
08/22/22 08:05 PM
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More pics. Couldn't get very good pics of the driver side.
Pic 1-4 long way from where it used to be.

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3070589
08/22/22 08:09 PM
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More pics, because, well, I took them! LOL! Gene

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3070722
08/23/22 10:59 AM
08/23/22 10:59 AM
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that looks really good, and once again, you have proven your mastery of the dakota chassis swap. up bow
i can see your concern about the nose piece.
are those somewhat difficult to come across ? if so, i wonder if it might be a good idea to have a spare, just in case ?
beer

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: moparx] #3070905
08/23/22 09:28 PM
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The nose pieces are still available used, and many are in very good condition. They are fairly pricy, which a person should expect for the size and importance of the part. Unfortunately, the prices also puts it at a level where having one sitting around waiting for an event that might never happen may not make much sense.

The entire passenger side of the nose piece on my truck was badly damaged, but with a hammer & dolly, a few patches, and some filler, it will work OK on my truck. Should something bad happen to it, I will cross that bridge if it ever comes. Between now and then, I'm going to at least add some protection. If the nose piece gets damaged bad enough to warrant a replacement, a major rebuild of this truck would also probably be required. A lot of important stuff isn't too far behind that nose piece.

I got the front bumper brackets modified today, and painted them. Hopefully tomorrow I'll get it back on the truck and get a few pictures. Then I'm going to be in clean up mode, and check over mode. The truck has basically been sitting since the end of May and will be going on a 130 mile drive Sunday to the Mopars on the Mississippi show. It looks like that trip may have some rain involved, so I want to be sure everything will be ready.

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3072086
08/28/22 02:25 PM
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Looks Awesome...

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: Webster] #3077340
09/14/22 09:50 PM
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Thanks, it really turned out better then I expected.

True to form, its already got its first chips, we have some paint left, but my buddy says we can't touch it up until the rest fully cures, after about a month.
There is still more to come, I still plan on undercoating under the fenders, and probably some mud flaps behind the front tires just to help protect the body from the winter salt.
I'm also planning on a bed cover, but that might not happen until spring at this point. We just did a light color dusting on the inside of the bed after the epoxy primer, haven't decided if I'm painting inside the bed, or tinting a spray in bed liner, since it will eventually be covered.
I need to get a headliner, I have something over head right now, but its not wide enough. The headliner kit is $450, that most likely will be on next years list. We did make it to the Mopars on the Mississippi and they awarded me 3rd place out of 8 really nice modified trucks. That was a pleasant surprise as well.

Picture with the front bumper repositioned.

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Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3078785
09/19/22 04:25 PM
09/19/22 04:25 PM
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S.E. South Dakota !
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Looks really good .. I've been trying to find some locally to put a basic paint job on my race car, caus e the one on it is awful .. just good enough to shine all i want , no one , even friends that own body shops will help me


The lips of fools bring them strife, and their mouths invite a beating.Proverbs 18:6
Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: bigdad] #3078894
09/19/22 10:26 PM
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Thanks bigdad.
My buddy is in the process of closing down his body shop, I'm sure going to miss him after he closes. He says he will still do some painting at his house after he closes his shop, but I suspect I know how that is going to work out.
This one might really be my last one.

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: poorboy] #3078992
09/20/22 11:07 AM
09/20/22 11:07 AM
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i think that is one reason the rat rod movement is so popular. not necessarily with spectators, but the owners.
as paint and material prices continue to climb, and buddies get out of the body and paint business, the rat style will continue to increase. if a guy wants anything shiny, it will be "Earl Schibe" or learn to do it your self.
beer

Re: 49 Dodge pickup on a 96 Dakota 4x4 chassis [Re: moparx] #3079168
09/20/22 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by moparx
i think that is one reason the rat rod movement is so popular. not necessarily with spectators, but the owners.
as paint and material prices continue to climb, and buddies get out of the body and paint business, the rat style will continue to increase. if a guy wants anything shiny, it will be "Earl Schibe" or learn to do it your self.
beer


Between that and the concept of the amount of effort required to keeping the shiny paint clean and shiny, and those dreaded, sure to come, first chips and scratches. Other people get really picky when something has pretty paint, and feel a need to pick it apart. With the rat rod look, most people look at it as an old vehicle (as long as its not radical) and admire it as a survivor (weather it is or not).

Seems the rat rod is either "cool", or its not, but a shinny car is a "show car" and gets compared to perfection.

I drive my stuff. Perfection was never the goal.

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