How to Build a Rat Rod
If you are looking for a fun project this winter, why not build a rat rod? My son and I had just as much fun building our rat rod last winter as we did driving it around this summer. From finding the perfect body all the way through finally finishing our rat rod the project was really fun.
The first thing you are going to want to do is find a good body. You may want to find an old truck body from the early 20's through the 60's. You could also find a car body from the same era.
How do you find one of these bodies? Well you could check your local junkyards, or classified ads. There are also other ways to find great bodies for building a rat rod, but I will get to that later.
If you are going to build a truck then try to get a half ton and make sure you get the title. Hopefully the truck will already have a V8 in it but if it doesn't it's no big deal. I usually start by cutting off the roof. You should try to leave the uprights for the windshield in place so you can still mount a windshield easily. You should also strengthen the frame by welding in some tube steel in all the crucial places. This should take you a few weeks if you are working 10 hours a week or so.
Now you need an engine for your rat rod. Most people use small block chevy motors because they are available and cheap. You can use whatever you want, but make sure you don't spend too much. You should rebuild or replace the crucial parts like the oil pump, water pump, alternator etc. Make sure the motor is going to be loud. Put some new headers on and remove all the smog stuff, so you can really hear it run.
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