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1985 D150 /6 4 speed to 383 727 combo from '70 challenger
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, while investigating my lighting issue I came across a grim discovery that I can't really decide what to do about. My interior roof panels seem to be rotted. This isn't the normal drip rail problem (it has rail rust but no holes I can find). Rust spots formed on the interior panel that developed into holes. Just looking into the holes I can see rot on all panels and there is loose pieces of the interior sheet metal panels near the worst hole. I know I'm just gonna have to cut it open and find the worst of it, but right now I'm expecting the worst since I can push up on the passenger side panel and hear the sound of rust crackling. Should I try and find a donor cab for roof panels? A cab swap is out of the question because of cost. Anyone here have experience with fixing interior rot? The truck only has 61k on the body and I'd hate to have to do anything like swapping cabs. It's really sad too because besides the roof and the bed arch it is almost 100% rust free. Sorry if I'm getting into emotions too much, I'm just really saddened by the discovery. Any tips or help is appreciated.
 

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What year is the truck and where do you live? You may be able to find a donor fairly cheap. SW trucks are usually rust free. West coast trucks can be found with minimal rust. It sounds like the NE and midwest trucks rot from the bottom up so you might find a good top out there.
 

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1985 D150 /6 4 speed to 383 727 combo from '70 challenger
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What year is the truck and where do you live? You may be able to find a donor fairly cheap. SW trucks are usually rust free. West coast trucks can be found with minimal rust. It sounds like the NE and midwest trucks rot from the bottom up so you might find a good top out there.
It's a 1985, and I'm from midwestern PA. There aren't too many worth saving here sadly, almost every one I find around here seems to always need a bed at minimum and almost every one around has roof rot. It doesn't help that 2 kinds of places to find parts up here are the guys who have 30+ trucks that are rotting into the ground that wouldn't even sell you the peeling clearcoat off of one, and the guys selling a cab that needs floors, corners, and rockers for $1200. I'm still in high school so funds and time aren't plentiful, but I'll definitely be looking. Who knows, I might try to see if one guy I know of would sell a cab and maybe knock the price down a bit in return for a good condition 84 grille with a headlight bucket and a full dash I have laying around.
 

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Where are you in PA? There's a yard close to me that has several of these trucks, I went up there and cut a roof off last year for $150.
 

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'79 Macho 360 Magnum, Comp 480 cam, Hughes springs, 650 Thunder AVS, Pertronix Flamethrower ignition
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What you need to do is look around the rest of the cab for more rust like around the windshield and the cab mounts/floor etc. Unfortunately it's double layered steel in the cabs around the drip rails and rear wall area which makes it very difficult for most people to repair and sometimes if the rust is bad enough, a cab swap is the only option. A cab swap ain't all that bad of a job to do.
 

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1985 D150 /6 4 speed to 383 727 combo from '70 challenger
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Where are you in PA? There's a yard close to me that has several of these trucks, I went up there and cut a roof off last year for $150.
I'm just a few miles west of Clarion. I saw on your profile you're from Clearfield. That's a pretty long drive with 10mpg, but that sounds like a pretty good deal for a whole roof, plus if there's a few good trucks up there I might be able to find a couple other parts I might need while I'm there.
 

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1985 D150 /6 4 speed to 383 727 combo from '70 challenger
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
What you need to do is look around the rest of the cab for more rust like around the windshield and the cab mounts/floor etc. Unfortunately it's double layered steel in the cabs around the drip rails and rear wall area which makes it very difficult for most people to repair and sometimes if the rust is bad enough, a cab swap is the only option. A cab swap ain't all that bad of a job to do.
What amazes me is the specific nature of the rust. I wire wheeled the rusty spots on the drip rail and I can't find a single hole. The crack in between the windshield seal and the cab have a little surface rust but same situation with no holes. I know there has to be something I'm not finding that points to where it is sourced. The only body patch i can find is a replacement rocker but we're thinking it was from a possible collision (the truck's history is pretty cloudy to say the least. Used to be an old farm truck and sat for 15 years from what we were told.) and we think this because of the lack of rust anywhere else. Heck, the frame paint is only now starting to flake. It makes me feel bad because it's a darn solid truck and the only spot of concern is the roof. It's either that or whoever painted it did a dang good job at hiding rust.
 

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What amazes me is the specific nature of the rust. I wire wheeled the rusty spots on the drip rail and I can't find a single hole. The crack in between the windshield seal and the cab have a little surface rust but same situation with no holes. I know there has to be something I'm not finding that points to where it is sourced. The only body patch i can find is a replacement rocker but we're thinking it was from a possible collision (the truck's history is pretty cloudy to say the least. Used to be an old farm truck and sat for 15 years from what we were told.) and we think this because of the lack of rust anywhere else. Heck, the frame paint is only now starting to flake. It makes me feel bad because it's a darn solid truck and the only spot of concern is the roof. It's either that or whoever painted it did a dang good job at hiding rust.
I'm wondering if condensation could be the cause too.

If you watch many car restoration shows... it's amazing what paint and filler can hide.
 

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yup l,d also say condensation , dodge trucks are known for it , and if the truck is put in the right conditions [ sun & shade ] and add some moisture the whole roof will rot off
 

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What they said.....truck sits in the sun all day interior heats up, cools down at night and the exterior of the roof gets cold while the interior remains warm.......Ive always removed the sunvisors and filled the inside of the roof with oil.
 

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'79 Macho 360 Magnum, Comp 480 cam, Hughes springs, 650 Thunder AVS, Pertronix Flamethrower ignition
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I pour oil everywhere like in all of the seams and nooks and cranies, wheel wells, etc. Oil does an awesome job at stopping rust.
 

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What they said.....truck sits in the sun all day interior heats up, cools down at night and the exterior of the roof gets cold while the interior remains warm.......Ive always removed the sunvisors and filled the inside of the roof with oil.
Ummmm... How? Do you just let it drain into the front valley? Fog it?
 

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I use Fluidfilm works great
Does it spray more like WD40 0r hair spray? I curious to know when you've applied enough to coat thru the visor hole.
 

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If you have rust bubbles on the inner panel of your cab, thats pretty serious. While you could weld a new roof with interior onto your truck, keeping the structural integrity of the cab in case of a rollover would be a pretty tall order. I've done the outer panel and front support, but not sure I could do a total roof weld including a and b pillars.
You got any pics?
 

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Does it spray more like WD40 0r hair spray? I curious to know when you've applied enough to coat thru the visor hole.
Comes with a little tube like wd40, if you look on ebay you can get a wand that goes on the can kind of sprays like rust proofing. I just spray til I'm satisfied that it is covered
 
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Comes with a little tube like wd40, if you look on ebay you can get a wand that goes on the can kind of sprays like rust proofing. I just spray til I'm satisfied that it is covered
 

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Fellas, if you spray thru the visor holes, you only get the space between the support and inner panel. The space between the outer panel and support gets next to nothing. You gotta drill holes further back and toward the middle
pics here starting at post 20
 
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The roof sheet is spot welded along the drip rails and across the top portion of the windshield frame and the rear section is a seem weld. All of the spot welds would need to be drilled out and separated including the rear seam and then you remove the skin and install the replacement and then rosette weld everything back together and then apply some seam sealer to complete the job.
 

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Fellas, if you spray thru the visor holes, you only get the space between the support and inner panel. The space between the outer panel and support gets next to nothing. You gotta drill holes further back and toward the middle
pics here starting at post 20
Stick the applicator want in the visor hole and run it towards the back of the cab....You can see in your pics the two panels dont touch each other...I shove the tube in as far as I can and spray....the wand sprays 360 degrees, oil runs out the B pillars and down on the floor so Im thinking I have pretty good coverage!
 
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