Drivers side

April 13th 2012

Just purchased a 1993 W250 Extend Cab LE.

Drove 550 miles to St. Louis MO and picked it up. I drove the truck back and it seemed to do real well. No rattles or wind noises to speak of. The motor is bone stock except for the air filter and the pump has not been turned at all. 550 miles between 70 and 75 mph got us 19.25 mpg on the trip home.



The body is in solid condition with no rust what so ever. A little dirty and the paint is faded bad on the top of the cab and hood but all that can and will be taken care of.



The bed looks like it has never hauled anything and the interior is clean other than the carpet and the doors shut solid. This is a prime candidate for a resto.



Two small dings. They will be taken care of during the resto.



April 20th 2012

Getting ready to start this project, I've still been ordering parts but I'm just about done. I decided that I didn't want a lift since I will be using this truck to pull a trailer and a camper so I contacted Blacks Springs in Zanesville OH and for about $400 they added a leaf to and re-arched the remaining front springs to gain about a 2" lift in the front. This seems to have leveled the truck out and should make room for a larger tire size later in the resto.

These two shots are as close as I can get to a before and after. Sitting on level before, the front was about 3 1/2" lower than the rear. Now we have dropped that number to just under 1 1/2". It's hard to tell from the pictures but the tape doesn't lie. Those wheels and cab lights have gotta go.



April 26th 2012

Ahh yes, the parts are starting to pour in. Sunvisor, rain guards, bug deflector, new door and window seals, carpet, floor mats, and tubular side steps.



May 8th 2012

Washed the truck today and backed it into the garage. The paint looked great after I washed it but the roof and hood were just too far gone. I think it was caught just in time. I would like to finish this project before June so we better get moving.




May 9th 2012

Got a good start today. Stripped both doors of all parts on the inside and outside. Pulled off all of the fender flares and removed all of the alum accents. I really like the alum accents but they don't seem to fit right. I may need to take them and adjust them in a brake before putting them back on.




May 10th

Removed the seats, carpet, headliner, interior trim and all of the glass today. The passenger side carpet was damp so I'm surprised it wasn't rusted like the drivers side. I will have to check for possible leaks. Also removed the cab lights and grill. Bumpers and bed are next then starts the sanding and sanding and then more sanding.



Found one rust hole in the floor pan under the drivers side carpet that will have to be fixed. And I found a crack along the bottom of the passenger seat hinge. So much for no rust.



I've got seven of these brand new lights that I won't be putting back on the truck. And these four wheels will not be going back on the truck so if there is anyone interested please let me know.



She's coming along next will be the bumper, hood and bed.



Rear BumperRemove Bed
Removed the rear bumper and bed. It helps to have an overhead crane.


Goose Neck Ball
I knew this truck had a Goose Neck ball in it but didn't know it was like this. This will have to go.

Cut out floor boardNew Floor
With the bed outside, I pulled the truck back in and started some repairs. I cut the old floorboard out and welded in a new one. 

Tape off Front endDoor Tape
I didn't want any dust in the interior of the truck so I taped everything off before I started sanding.

Fender measurements
Also, before I sanded all the marks off, I took a flexible tape measure and wrote down all of the important dimensions and took a picture of them so I could lay everything back out later. I'm not sure if this is standard practice but it worked for me.

Epoxy Primer Cab
I found very small amounts of rust starting behind the molding and the roof was starting to rust since the roof paint was almost gone so I sealed everything in a few coats of Epoxy Primer.

Painting Gold two toneMasking Gold Two Tone
With the whole cab primered, I painted all of the Gold that would be the center of the Two Tone paint colors and then masked everything out using the dimensions I had gathered earlier.

Cab Painted GreenClear Coated Cab
Time for some Emerald Green Paint. Doesn't seem to matter how much light you have it is never enough. There were a few light spots that I need to go back and touch up but once the clear was layed on, the truck really started to look good.

Dynomat cab FloorDynomat Door
These old trucks aren't known for being the quietest so I decided the help it with dynamat on the floor, doors and roof.

New InteriorFinished Door
Finally got the interior all back together. The carpet had turned an odd shade of pink from the sun so it had to go. The doors however were in great shape.

Before StepAfter Step
Steps Before and After

Painting Frame
Finally cleaned off that Goose Neck mount and started painting the frame. Since the bed has a hole where the old ball came through, I'm will need to adjust the placement of the new Turnover ball by about 3/4" to the rear.

Rage Body FillerSanded filer
Finished painting the frame the other day so the cab and chassis was moved outside to make room for the truck bed. There was a large dent in the passenger bed side that needed attention. It looked like it had slid sideways into a pole. First we beat and beat and pounded and heated until we got most of the dent out then coated the whole area with Rage body filler. I never thought I would get finished sanding this dent but when it was done, there was no sign of the dent what so ever.

Masking and Sanding the bedEpoxy Primer the Bed
More masking, sanding and Epoxy Primer. The bed was in great shape with no scratches or fading and the planned spray in bed liner would cover up the original paint color so I decided not to paint the inside of the bed since matching paint colors wasn't going to be an issue.

Painting the gold on the bedMask the gold on the bedPainting the bed green
I tried to take these pictures from the same spot and angle to show the steps of the two tone process. You really need to be ready because each color only has so long before it can no longer be repainted or cleared. Once you paint the gold, you can't stop until the green is sprayed and the entire thing is clear coated. If you miss the window, you must sand the color which takes the sheen and flake off and changes the appearance.

Unmasking the bedClear Coat the bed
Unmasking the bed without pealing any paint is a chore. Last step is the clear before we can quite for the night. I sprayed the gold at about 8:00 a.m. this morning and it is now 11:00 p.m. Two tone is definitely involved.

Truck with Painted bed
Here we are with the bed back on the truck. Some of the paint lines are uneven but that will be covered up with the molding.

Visor damageRepair VisorFiberglass Visor
Well, I now have an education on Sunvisors vs. Moonvisors and Regular cabs vs. Extended cabs. I started out pretty certain that all I needed to do was pick up the phone and call Summit and I would have a new Sunvisor (Moonvisors's are no longer made by Summit) ready to paint and install. This could not be farther from the truth. When I tried to fit it on the truck, I learned that Extended cabs have a different roof line than regular cabs and again, Summit no longer makes the Extended cab style. When these things were made by Lund, which no longer makes them for small trucks, the cost of a Sunvisor was around $400 plus another $300 for the lighted version called a Moonvisor. If you are ever bored, just try to find any Sunvisors or Moonvisors for 1st Gen Dodge Extended cab trucks. When I finally gave up, I was looking on E-bay for new badges for the front fenders when I came across an auction for an engine and the pictures showed an Extended cab truck with a Moonvisor. I contacted the seller to ask if the visor was available. Turns out it was but it had a "chip" in the drivers side. For $40 and next to no shipping, it was on its way. I would call that a chunk but hey, nothing a little Fiberglass repair kit won't fix.

Rage Filler on VisorSanded and ready visor
A little filler and some sanding and shaping and it's as good as new.

sanded and primed tailgatesanded and primed visorsanded and primed hood
The final pieces were then sanded and primed then painted

new grillePainted tailgate
New Grille up front and Painted tailgate in back. It's now down to the little things.

90% truck
With the molding, bud deflector and Visor, the thing is really starting to take shape. But those wheels have got to go.

2010 wheels
I had a 2010 Dodge with these chrome clad alum. wheels and thought they would look great on this style truck. With 1.5" spacers all the way around and a few other mods, they fit great.

center cap modCenter Cap Before and After
Here was one little mod I needed to take care of. The center caps fit just fine on the rear wheels but since the 1993 has lock in/out hubs unlike the 2010, the front caps needed to be machined to fit over the hubs. I just chucked it up in my lathe and took the centers out. Worked pretty well.

Driver's sideAfter
Here are two shots of the truck in the same position before and after. It doesn't even look like the same truck. The visor and wheels really set it apart for me. Almost 1 year to the day from start to finish but some of that is due to the cost of keeping the shop above 70 during the 20 and below winter months. It was just too much and I had to put things on hold until the weather broke.This is the first time I have ever painted and there are a few blemishes but I'm happy with the way it turned out and I know what I have and what's been done to it. There is a '79 Lil red express that's just dying to be a Midnite Express with a 440 and a Demon looking for a new life and it's own 440 waiting in the shop now. Looks like I've found a new hobby.


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