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2000 Ford F-350 Paint Job - Power Painting

Project Power Stroke Puller Gets a Makeover

When we originally picked up our ‘00 Ford F-350 Power Stroke for $3,000, we knew we were ahead of the game right from the start. This was the kind of deal you can’t get on Craigslist or eBay, but one foolproof way of getting a killer rig at a crazy low price is to always have your available cash ready and waiting in your sock drawer. Eventually the day will come when a friend’s friend needs to sell his truck quickly and you just happen to have enough cash to snatch it up.

After Pela Motorsports performed basic maintenance and upgrades (Dec./Jan. ’14), the value of this truck was much higher than what we paid. We’ve added a few common modifications like an S&B cold-air intake, an MBRP exhaust system, KT Performance bolt-in stacks, Amsoil fluids, Optima YellowTop batteries, and even a custom engine tune. These simple DIY upgrades were just the first step in this tow rig’s transformation.

Once the 7.3L diesel motor was clean and clear we took it on a few road trip towing our buggy around the state. We had no issues other than the oil pump, which is better than we expected from this old truck. The suspension was pretty soft due to years of towing boats, so Daniel Winters and the crew at DV8 Motorsports installed a 6-inch BDS suspension lift. New 33-inch Grabber tires were ordered from General Tire, and Value Tire & Alignment in Royal Palm Beach, Florida, took care of mounting them. This made a big difference in the ride quality as well as the towing ability, which is great, but it is still pretty damn ugly. So if this is going to be our official tow rig, we need to make it look the part. That’s where LMC Truck and Chrome Fish Customs come into the picture.

We originally dropped off our truck at Signs of the Times in Port St. Lucie to have inexpensive vinyl decals installed, but once Jacob from Chrome Fish got word of a magazine build in the area, he rushed right over to check it out. Chrome Fish is known nationwide for extremely detailed paint jobs and precise hydrographic wraps. They took control of the project and brought it over to their shop to sand and strip the body. We were expecting a basic single-stage paint job, but these guys just don’t do work like that. After some replacement parts were ordered from the fine folks at LMC truck, the prep work got started and dust started flying. They assured us that this would be a paint job to be proud of. We can’t wait to see what they have planned. Not only are they fixing the body damage and rust, but they are preforming a full color change to PPG Satin Black too. Finally, some Mud Life graphics will be added, and our Power Stroke will be pullin’ again!

LMC Truck parts Sent the new body panels in a matter of days, and they arrived without a scratch on them. The care and attention that LMC put into packaging these parts is extremely commendable. Plus it gives us a bunch of great cardboard for bonfires.

Taping and sanding is one of the toughest steps in the paint job, but after years of experience these guys make it look easy. Prep work is the key to a good paint job. Slack now and regret it later.

With the body damage repaired and the new LMC panels installed, it’s starting to look like a truck again. It’s impressive to watch artists at work, and these guys are at the top of their game. Keeping their shop clean guarantees that their paint jobs will be free of flying dirt and debris.

We also orderd all new Ford emblems, running lights, door seals, and even a new grille. It's a little too easy to add parts to the LMC online shopping cart, so watch your budget and just get a few at a time.

Now that all the parts are unpacked and fitment is checked, Jacob from Chrome Fish Customs can get to work. The rear dualie fenders just unbolt and unclip, so no major bodywork is needed to replace these rear fender panels.

The first places on our Power Stroke to see paint were the doorjambs. The guys at Chrome Fish were not kidding when they said “full color change.” This part of the job can be quickly done outside before the truck is closed up and pushed into the paint booth.

The hood and rear dualie fenders are painted off the truck and set aside to dry. We were very impressed with the LMC panels’ fitment and finish. These are easy to prep and paint with no hassle.

Here is where we roll it into the paint booth and tell you to watch for part 2 in our next issue. We will cover a few painter tips and tricks for the perfect satin paint job, along with some killer custom graphics.

We hope to eventually increase the value of our rig by over 300 percent with these simple tasks. We strongly recommend you start a project of your own. Anyone can buy a new truck, but it’s a lot more fun to restore one and make it truly yours.