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Project Long-Range Clunker - 1994 Dodge Ram

Posted in Project Vehicles on August 1, 2010
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When we last saw our '94 Dodge Ram we affectionately call The Clunker (May '10), we told you that we'd do something about property values in the next installment. Well, we are a long way down the road towards making the truck less ugly, but we couldn't stand the smell of smoke and dog hair following us everywhere we went.


What we've all heard about buying a smoker's vehicle is at least partly true. We weren't really concerned about it going into this project, as our parents smoked and the car was never that bad. But the guy that owned this truck took it to a whole new level. The ashtray was full of butts, and when we pulled the dashboard out to access the heater core, we were shocked to find the back of the dash filled with butts as well. There were burn holes in the door panels, seat, and just about everywhere else we looked.


If that wasn't enough, it looked as though the previous owner used the cab of the truck as a kennel for his white German Shepherd. We like dogs as much as the next guy, but when you can measure how much fur is in a truck in fractions of an inch, it's time for an intervention.

The heater core had been leaking on the carpet for who knows how long, and there was all kinds of scunge (technical term) ground into the carpet. We tried cleaning the worst spot and didn't even touch it, so the entire carpet and jute backing got tossed in the trash bin. This is just after we pulled the seats out and after two vacuum jobs (the extra cigarettes fell out during seat removal).

The interior was not only trashed from neglect, but it had all the normal issues such as a sagging headliner, torn-up driver's seat, dashboard damage, ragged door seals, and so forth. So rather than address property values, we decided to kill the gag reflex that some people had when getting into the truck. Follow along as we chase smoke and wet dog damage out of the cab by gutting it, fixing what we can, and upgrading what can't be fixed. Next time, we'll get those property values taken care of.

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