This is Part 1 of what will be a 3 part presentation, with Part 2 coming after new products are released at SEMA on November 3, 2009 and Part 3 coming early in 2010.
Some of you may recall a previous write up on this truck from last year (my 2004 dodge ram) when the owner, Meredith, started the custom work and had the repaint buffed out by Jason Rose and Kevin Brown. Well, during the past year the paint shrank back a bit and, since "Super Bee" is going to be shown off at SEMA next week, some work needed to be done to bring it up to its full potential.
Meredith explains the paint like this: "Drawing inspiration from the Commemorative Edition Dodge SRT-10 Viper truck, the paint consists of a Solar Yellow base with Chrysler Brilliant Black Crystal Pearl fanged racing stripes outlined in a silver metallic hand pinstripe. The door handles and antenna base were painted yellow to match the body of the truck, but the mirrors were left black so as to blend in with the tinted windows. The headlights were replaced with ones with clear reflectors, and the stock tail lights and third brake light were smoked for a more aggressive appearance. Accents like the aluminum gas door, one-off bumper and hood grill inserts and custom exhaust trim tie in nicely with the truck’s overall color scheme of yellow, black and silver."
But the paint wasn't the only thing Meredith altered: "Before the truck was sent out for paint, it received a cosmetic facelift. We added a Gaylord’s TL tonneau cover, Sir Michael’s steel roll pan and SRT-10 hood. The locks on the tonneau cover and the tail gate handle were shaved, and the spare tire hole was filled for a smooth appearance. To further separate this truck from regular Dodge Rams, Jesse fabricated a solid rear ground effects piece that sits below the roll pan. A McGaughy’s 2”/4” drop, chrome 22” Boss wheels wrapped in Falken tires and rear-exit exhaust mimic the old school muscle car look."
More information on the custom sound system created by Drive Customs can be found HERE
As for that paint shrinkage, Jason Rose and Kevin Brown were once again called in for buffing duties and yours truly was tagged to be part of the team. Part 1 here deals with addressing some of the issues and how we went about correcting them, but since we made use of some new for 2010 products we'll have to wait until next week for Part 2.
This is how the truck looked when we arrived on Monday morning. Not bad, eh? So why did we spend the next 17 hours working on it???
Why did we need this much kit to work on it????
Here's why - etched paint from water spots, texture from shrinkage, and a general lack of true "Show Car Quality" appearance.
But even all those issues, and the knowledge that this was going to be a loooong day, couldn't wipe the smile off Kevin's face!
Yes, Kevin is long blocking the tonneau cover, and he's using 800 grit paper!
Apparently Jason, off camera, was trying to Kevin a hard time.... but hey, we've got work to do!
Whistle while you work!
How to properly wrap your sand paper around your interface pad.
Ripples in the paint were still visible after 800 grit long blocking and 1000 grit by hand. But the underlying fiberglass was the real culprit, so only so much leveling could be done. Luckily we knew that a crazy huge amount of clear had been laid down a year ago - but that was also a factor in the shrinkage and texture we now had to deal with.
Sanding stepped down to 2000 grit and even 3000 grit via dual action sander.
Following the long blocking with 800 grit the low spots are clearly visible. This was primarily due to the fiberglass tonneau being less than perfectly flat before the paint was applied. Some things you just have live with.
Meredith stopped by late in the day to assess our progress. Kind of looks like she's trying soothe her baby, huh?
Lots of machine polishing coming up, so a wide range of backing plates are at the ready, as are the usual suspects in the liquids department.
Late at night (very late at night) Meredith continues her vigilant watch over "Super Bee" as Kevin puts some finishing touches on the tailgate.
Reflections? You want to see some reflections?
Next week, in Part 2, we'll show you some of the fun new toys we used to get these stunning results. And if you're at SEMA this year stop by the MotorMusicMag.com booth (#10459) and say "hi" to Meredith and "Super Bee"
Part 2 of this project is available HERE.