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2004 Dodge Ram 1500 - Millennial Mudder

Posted in Features on August 16, 2013
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It doesn't seem like that long ago when we were sitting in the theaters watching summer blockbuster movies like Jurassic Park, Men in Black, and Twister, does it? Well, believe it or not, the individuals who make up Generation Y weren't even around when these movies came out. But they're grown up now and tearing up the local mud hole next to you and I. The Generation Y'er in this 5-ton diesel-powered mega truck says his rig is specifically built for one purpose, slingin' mud!

Our buddy Christopher McGinley out of Jacksonville, Florida, is nothing like the many indoor, video-game-loving 16-year-olds we all know. He spends as little time indoors as possible and as much time in the woods shooting paintballs at his buddies as the sunlight allows. The idea to build this truck came a few months before Chris's sixteenth birthday, when his father and fellow hardcore mudder Ray McGinley met up with Dave Starling at Dirty Dave Customs in Jacksonville. After a lengthy brainstorming session with the crew a plan was made and some parts were ordered that transformed the stock '04 Dodge Ram 1500 into Chris's new bogger.

The most obvious modifications the crew at DDC did to this Dodge is the 5-ton axle swap. The hand-fabricated four-link suspension was built using Heim joints and bungs from BamBam Biguns in Tallahassee, Florida. PlanB-Fab provided the 18-inch FOA coilover shocks for the front and rear of the Dodge. 26-inch tractor wheel barrels from PlanB-Fab and wheel centers from DG Custom Fab in Jacksonville were welded together and wrapped with 28Lx26 Titan RT rice-and-canes tires. DDC's custom pinion brake kit was installed for braking safety and reliability.

Clearly the factory Dodge gas-powered motor couldn't handle the big rig and new axles, so DDC plucked a 12-valve Dodge Cummins diesel engine out of a '95 Dodge 2500 and transplanted it into the Ram along with a factory Dodge 518 transmission. An SCS gearbox and a set of 1610 driveshafts were bolted in to transfer the power to the wheels and tires.

The original plan for the exterior design of Chris's rig included flat black paint and bright graphics to make it stand out. Ray had DDC order up the popular Hot Rod Black flat paint from House of Kolor. Todd at DDC spent hours sanding and filling the body for a nice smooth finish before the paint was laid down. Bright orange powdercoating and graphics followed the paint.

A Kicker audio system complete with 10-inch subwoofers and a Pioneer touchscreen means Chris is set with a killer sound system.

Everything outside the engine was built using high-quality new and custom parts, and we are told absolutely no corners have been cut. This rig was impressive to watch eat through some of the deepest pits in South Florida and keep on bogging.

Mud Rig Specifications
'04 Dodge Ram 1500
Owner: Christopher McGinley
Engine: 12-valve Cummins diesel
Transmission: Dodge 518 automatic
Transfer Case: SCS
Suspension: 4-link
Axles: 5-ton Rockwell
Shocks: 18-inch FOA Shocks
Tires & Wheels: 26x20 wheels, 28Lx26 Titan RT rice-and-canes

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