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PostPosted: Sun Mar 31, 2024 4:19 pm 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2002 9:20 pm
Posts: 13017
Location: Fircrest, WA
Car Model: 76 D100
OK, I have a crazy idea I am keeping under my hat for now, but I have a question.

Does anyone out there have a picture or can they tell me where the body seam is on the A pillar of an 80s era Dodge D-series truck? Is it up at the top where the A pillar meets the roof panel or is there one lower down by the firewall? A picture would be fabulous, but I would be very happy with a verbal description, too.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2024 7:13 pm 
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EFI Slant 6

Joined: Mon May 26, 2014 4:02 pm
Posts: 419
Location: Vermont
Car Model: Slant Six M37
Reed,
I'm not clear about what you are asking for, but this shows the cab seem up at the top??
Fast forward to 6:18?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hu1NtzERqdE


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 28, 2024 1:48 am 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2002 9:20 pm
Posts: 13017
Location: Fircrest, WA
Car Model: 76 D100
Jase wrote:
Reed,
I'm not clear about what you are asking for, but this shows the cab seem up at the top??
Fast forward to 6:18?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hu1NtzERqdE



That is the seam in the B pillar. The A pillars are the ones on either side of the windshield.

However, I found the answer to my question. There is no "seam", just a bazillion spot welds and flanges.

Just to explain, I ended up purchasing a 1993 Ramcharger for VERY cheap because is has very bad roof rust in the rain channel area. I found a near rust free Ramcharger roof at a junkyrd and have cut the junkyard roof off and I am going to just replace the entire roof assembly rather than cut out and replace just the rusty bits in the original roof. My plan is to separate the body panels at the factory spot welds. I won't be able to do that on the A pillars, but I will reinforce the welds on the cuts I made mid-pillar.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2024 4:22 pm 
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EFI Slant 6

Joined: Mon May 26, 2014 4:02 pm
Posts: 419
Location: Vermont
Car Model: Slant Six M37
Reed wrote:
Just to explain, I ended up purchasing a 1993 Ramcharger for VERY cheap because is has very bad roof rust in the rain channel area. I found a near rust free Ramcharger roof at a junkyrd and have cut the junkyard roof off and I am going to just replace the entire roof assembly rather than cut out and replace just the rusty bits in the original roof. My plan is to separate the body panels at the factory spot welds. I won't be able to do that on the A pillars, but I will reinforce the welds on the cuts I made mid-pillar.


It always feels good to snag a project no one else wants, for little more than a song.. Pictures would be fun to see as I cannot imagine how the A pillars are attached...


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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2024 10:20 am 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 9:00 pm
Posts: 2832
Location: kankakee IL
Car Model: 80 volare, 78 fury 2 dr, 85 D150
My experience with the ugly grill years (91-93) is that they rotted out faster than most 72-90s did, and rust was more likely in places I didn't see as much of in the earlier years of them


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PostPosted: Fri May 03, 2024 9:08 pm 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2002 9:20 pm
Posts: 13017
Location: Fircrest, WA
Car Model: 76 D100
I think this truck actually held up pretty well, considering what I know of its history. It was sold new in Anchorage, Alaska, the town of my birth. I left the state the year before this truck arrived there, and it stayed up in AK until about 2010. It was then purchased by the guy I bought it from here in Washington state. He kept it out on an island in the Puget Sound (Hat Island, if you are curious), and only drove it occasionally.

AK stopped salting its roads in the early 80s, so the underside didn't see salt. However, someone, at some point, installed an aftermarket roof rack. This rack eventually began to leak at the mounting points, allowing water to get between the inner and outer body skins. Water collected at the top of every window and door opening, causing rust out. Water collected down at the bottom of the rockers causing rust out. And as far as I can tell, all rust on the truck, even the rusted out driver's side floor, came from the inside out due to the water leaks. The truck has had running boards probably since new, and these protected the rockers from the typical bottum-up rust. The guy I bought it from mostly let the truck sit in salty seaside air. He appears to have never washed the underside because it is coated with thick caked dirt. The tires on it now were installed up in Alaska, and I have a strong suspicion that lots of the dirt on the bottom of the truck also came from Alaska. Basically, it appears not much was done to maintain this truck for the last 15 years or so.

I have obtained patch panels for most of the big holes and I have secured a new upper half from a junked Ramcharger that was in good shape and nearly 100% rust free before an engine and interior fire killed it.

I hope this summer to get the rust patched and possibly get the truck repainted while it is warm.

As far as the A pillars attaching to the body, the best analogy is the root system of a tree. At the top and bottom of the A pillar are flanges that basically "tie the room together." The flanges are spot welded into the firewall, the cowl, the door frame, and the three other metal panels that join to form the upper windhield frame and roof. They are just too integrated into the structure of the vehicle to make trying to separate them feasible. Much easier to just cut them somewhere in the middle and reweld them.

The truck is sitting while I get caught up on other projects and work, but I am contemplating making youtube videos to document the project. Ihad been hoping for a quick project to turbn it into a daily driver, but it quickly ballooned into something much bigger. But at least it runs and drives so it isn't a driveway ornament.


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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2024 5:24 am 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 9:00 pm
Posts: 2832
Location: kankakee IL
Car Model: 80 volare, 78 fury 2 dr, 85 D150
My exp with running boards is just like the old wide trim the older vehicles had, "water traps" which only accelerates /aggravates rusting out
I've seen too many vehicles that look good with the running boards in place but under them is gone. Not even enough metal left to make swiss cheese ..


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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2024 11:34 pm 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2002 9:20 pm
Posts: 13017
Location: Fircrest, WA
Car Model: 76 D100
Well, I will find out soon enough. First step is getting a muffler on this thing so I can run it without ticking off the neighbors.


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PostPosted: Sun May 05, 2024 6:15 am 
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Supercharged
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 9:00 pm
Posts: 2832
Location: kankakee IL
Car Model: 80 volare, 78 fury 2 dr, 85 D150
That's over rated.......(Muffler) Haha


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