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Vintage Stepsides
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Discussion Starter #1
I recently purchased a 73 D100 Utiline short box w/318 ci V8. In looking at several Dodge/Mopar forums, this looks like 'the' place to be for information and help with the questions I'm sure I will have.

The body has seen some rough use but is relatively rust free in the usual areas of the cab. The purchase included two extra undamaged R&L front fenders, two extra undamaged R&L doors, lower front valance, and a few other parts.

This will be a project truck. My plans are to take it down to the frame, clean it, paint it, replace whatever needs to be replaced, etc. to make it straight. The previous owner lowered it 2 in. I expect to return it to it's original height. The previous owner also added headers, exhaust, Edelbrock intake and 4 bbl, as well as an NP535 5 spd manual transmission out of a Dakota. Immediately after I purchased it I put close to 550 miles on it to get it home. It runs and drives pretty well.

Here's a photo:
 

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Welcome to the site, congrats on your new truck, looks like a good project. Post pic's as you go along to help many others that will also want to do the same to thier trucks
 

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Lifetime MoparMan
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702 Posts
Welcome!
If you have any questions feel free to ask I have a 60+ year collection of Factory original service manuals for Chrysler,DeSoto,Dodge,Imperial & Plymouth Cars & Trucks Bob
 

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Welcome aboard the board! haha

I've found this forum to be very helpful, saved my butt on something more than once!

SnD
 

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Welcome to the site 1Asterisk. Nice truck to restore. Here is a picture of mine after a frame-off restoration. They look very similar. Lots of luck on your project. Take your time and do it right.
 

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Registered MOPAR User
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Welcome to DodgeTalk. I've found this site very useful and quite a few good members here as well!
 

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dodge77 - where in Denver, CO are you and do you take the truck out much to shows and things?

Sean
 

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DenverW100.....I live about 25 miles Northwest of Denver in Coal Creek Canyon. I have had my truck in several local shows but it is mainly a daily driver. :rck:
 

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Aka Force Fed Mopar
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Pretty decent truck, and oddly enough has the same exact mods as I did on my '72 lol (4bbl, headers, and 535 5-spd). It will look nice fixed up.
 

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Vintage Stepsides
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184 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
73 Utiline project - update

I had received two straight salvage fenders and two straight salvage doors with the purchase and I have fitted them to make sure they would work OK. I found a straight tailgate and an almost straight right rear fender in the local salvage yard.

Currently I have the bed disassembled and removed down to the frame. The interior carpet and seat have been removed. The original bench seat had been removed by the previous owner. He installed seats that were out of a Dakota and modified them to fit this truck. My intent is to sell the Dakota seats and find an original bench seat.

Intend to remove the front end body work next.

Would anyone know the original color from the picture in my original post? Not sure if it might have been (DT6398) Bronze or something else. Truck was originally a U.S. Govt Motor Pool vehicle according to the very faded decal on the door.
 

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Man looks like mine when I started. I am doing a full restoration on mine too. Mine is also a step side but a 79. Just something about these trucks that i love. Cant wait to see more pictures of it in the future, Good luck and welcome to the board.
 

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Vintage Stepsides
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Discussion Starter #15
Update

a photo update on my rebuild...Still in the process of taking it down to the frame.
 

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Vintage Stepsides
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Discussion Starter #17
The driver's side has two small 'nickel' sized holes rotted through. The passenger side has two or three pin holes in the pan. Everwhere else looked really good and solid. The rockers have some dent damage that needs repair, but no indication of serious rust. Overall I think I made out not too bad.



Everything that can be removed from the cab, has been removed. Cab is ready to be lifted off the frame.
 

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Vintage Stepsides
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184 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Cab lift from frame

Lifting the cab off the frame. Even with everything removed from the cab there was still a tendency to be slightly nose heavy. Once free of the frame the cab balanced on the strongback in a nose down attitude.

By lifting each end of the stongback 3-4 inches at a time, this 60+ year old was able to fairly easily lift the cab to 37 plus inches off the ground (measured to bottom of rocker panel) and lower it back down after rolling the chassis out from under.

The lifting frame was constructed of KD 2x6 with as few knots as I could find. The top end of the uprights were C-Clamped to the 2x6 roof trusses just to keep them upright (no load on the trusses). Everything worked as I hoped it would! :rck:
 

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They say that "Necessity is the mother of Invention" and I believe that you have proven this. What an ingenious "Home Brew" way of lifting the cab off of the chassis. You are really progressing on your body off restoration and I am looking forward to seeing the finished product. It is a lot of work, but the bottom line is the fact that it is well worth it and you will have one heck of a truck when you are finished. Rock on :rck::rck:
 
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