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Peterbilt 379 Flat Top lowboy project

Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
I am really deep in this project and wanted to share here. A few of my dream vehicles (restored of course) are the 69 Mustang fastback, 69 Bronco, and a long hood Peterbilt 379 with a big Cat motor. I have a few others like an 02 7.3 F550 crew cab but those are the main ones. I bought this 98 379 EXHD a little over a year ago. I never would have thought that it would have spent over 10 months in the hands of others. It's been through hell and I have had several people shake my hand while pissing on my leg in this ordeal. It's come a long way I will say but it is far from done. Maybe not that far since it's in good hands finally. My hands. I just got it back after losing my patience unfinished Friday. I couldn't take it anymore. The main thing is it's really starting to look like a spec truck compared to the OTR 379 it was. Long story short I went and recovered it Friday after cancelling work so I could get it home. This shop like the last shop was just dragging their feet and causing problems. I feel like my kid was at camp getting abused and I just wanted to get him home and love him/it. Hard to explain but I've been tore up over this for far too long. Lot of good work happened but a lot of shoddy work and prep to.

This was Friday... Good place to set fresh painted fenders huh. Right on the pavement. I put them in the bed of the truck to get home along with the sleeper door, painted cowl panels and a lot of other parts.
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This was an uncomfortable scene but I kept my cool and paid them with a demanded cashier's check. I was done fighting.

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It's new home for a while. It's no pro shop but it will get loved. It also won't fit so I have had to re truss the whole opening. Good thing I had the horns and lights removed and the roof shaved. It's 9'4' and the opening was 8'10". The new truss is 9'11" and it will fit.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Don't laugh but I was proud. This was five minutes after I bought it way down in South Georgia. It sounded incredible. A 1998 379 EXHD with a 550 3406E 10 spd. If I died then I would've been happy.
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Drove straight to the paint shop that day on a Saturday. It took two months to paint it for some reason.
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My first trailer after the Kaufman trailer deal wasn't pretty. I rushed into a hi boy out of desperation.
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Finally got the detach I wanted. Mainly for side loading and low and safe ride..... and they look awesome I have to say. Have always loved a 379 pulling a detach.
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Currently I have a huge amount parts here and on order for this project. This is the painted visor with dust all over it. I haven't checked if that is over spray yet. I'm scared too. I'll keep the updates as I finish this monster project.

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JDOFMEMI

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 3, 2007
Messages
3,074
Location
SoCal
Too bad that it has been such a struggle for you. It sure is hard to find people to care about your project like you want.

I know you will have a great truck when you get it done.
 

02Dmax

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2007
Messages
687
Location
MO
Is that the same truck that was also stolen at one point? There was black 379 with a lowboy on here a while back that got stolen but luckily recovered.
 

Sterff

Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2014
Messages
24
Location
PA
I can't wait to see it finished. I love a good flat top Peterbilt!
 

WColtharp

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
103
Location
Nashville,Tn/Fort Collins,CO
Is that the same truck that was also stolen at one point? There was black 379 with a lowboy on here a while back that got stolen but luckily recovered.

02Dmax: Not to step on Fastdirt's toes but he did have his truck stolen, but fortunately it was found and recovered! I believe I remember reading about this in his other thread pertaining to his work in the "showtime" forum.

Fastdirt: The truck looks great! It's such a same when a project that you have envisioned and spent countless hours daydreaming about comes with such headaches.. Keep on getting after it and it'll all come together, just with a little more sweat equity to make things interesting ;). Keep up the great work both on the job site and caring after your equipment. Top notch work!
 

nedly05

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2006
Messages
1,801
Location
Adk. Mtns, NY
The truck is looking great, at least shes in good hands now! What all do you have left to do on it? Will you start running it again before its finished?
 

Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Good grief this has been the project from hell!

I'm excited to see the finished project before I die!

I hear ya! I've felt the same way but we are going to get some progress now for sure. Actually a ton of work has been done. The main work the work I'm not setup to do.

Too bad that it has been such a struggle for you. It sure is hard to find people to care about your project like you want.

I know you will have a great truck when you get it done.

Thanks, JD. It is impossible to find someone around here. If you need a fleet truck fixed or a collision repair that's no problem. We need a Chrome Shop Mafia or Triple R Diesel around here. Nothing of that nature in metro Atlanta that I know of. I'm sure you have a lot of shops to pick from in S. California for custom work. I have dealing with Big Rig Chrome shop, Four State Trucks a.k.a. Chrome Shop Mafia, Outlaw Customs and many more. They are really really busy right now. Business is good. I have tried calling 12 Gauge Customs and they won't answer or return my calls. My point is it would be great to open a shop around here. I think I would be perfect for it. I care. I see the vision. I will tell a customer hey it will be 6 months to get you right if that's what I think. I would turn them away before I would tell them what they want to hear. I would be straight up period. I have been told by quite a few people exactly what I wanted to hear upon dropping the truck or trailer off. People are in it for money.

02Dmax: Not to step on Fastdirt's toes but he did have his truck stolen, but fortunately it was found and recovered! I believe I remember reading about this in his other thread pertaining to his work in the "showtime" forum.

Fastdirt: The truck looks great! It's such a same when a project that you have envisioned and spent countless hours daydreaming about comes with such headaches.. Keep on getting after it and it'll all come together, just with a little more sweat equity to make things interesting ;). Keep up the great work both on the job site and caring after your equipment. Top notch work!

Thanks a lot WC! We have a lot of sweat equity to look forward here. I will have multiple theft preventions on the truck from this point within days. Can't have it get stolen again. Obviously secret methods though ;)

The truck is looking great, at least shes in good hands now! What all do you have left to do on it? Will you start running it again before its finished?

Thanks, but I will not run it till it's 100% completed. I've waited too long. I am actually doing everything to this truck.
 

Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
What I've had done so far:

The axles were moved up 32" and huck bolted in place. It is now at 220" from 252".

The 63" sleeper was removed. A 2013 Peterbilt 36" flat top was installed.

I had Alumitank make 90 gallon 46" overall length tanks. It had the 130's removed. New aluminum straps from Alumitank.

I had a Peterbilt rear window frame installed. I was sold a used window. Discovered it was scratched this week. I ordered a new one from Peterbilt along with the seal and interior trim.

I had a right side sleeper window installed made specifically for the late model 36" from Peterbilt. It is a slider. I had the outer aluminum frame painted black and have the interior trim.

I had a left side door window installed in the sleeper door. It is flush mount. Door skin had to be replaced in order to install the window. The window does pop out and has interior trim.

New rear shocks. lateral bars. Two air bags. Drive shaft shortened.

Truck was painted black in mid 2013. The whole cab has been repainted along with door trim except for the bottom trim area that would get scuffed up. The new sleeper has been painted along with the door exterior trim and the side window trim.

The roof has been shaved along with the horns and marker lights removed.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Still at 252"

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The big sleepers aren't worth much. The flat tops are really high dollar though.

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Tanks are on. I had to figure tank size my self. So I called the good guys a Talladega fiberglass and asked them which tank size they used on their 379 with a 36" sleeper. They told me exactly what they used.

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Roof was filled and smoothed. The antenna has since been removed.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
After five months at one shop I had it towed to the shop that sold me the 36" sleeper.

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It was and is a big project all the way around.

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I was in search of the small hole 24.5 Alcoa rims. Fleetwheel said they could provide the rare wheels. They sent me regular whole wheels that had been polished so hard with a machine polisher that the vent holes were deformed from the polish wheel on one side.

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I repackaged them and had a truck come pick them up for a return. The first driver wouldn't pull in. It took five weeks to get my money back.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
I just went with Alcoa 24.5" wheels from Ron's Rims. Excellent service. I ordered the mirror finish instead of the level one polish. Also got a set for the lowboy trailer.

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So much work to do. My welder is coming to remove the rear fender brackets and weld on the rear plate for a pintle and a 2" receiver. I just ordered a 36"x36" 1" plate of steel for him to work with. After that process I can dress the frame.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Garage opening is done. It will allow the truck to come in. Electrician is coming to wire up for outlets and lights. Got a big order from 4 State Trucks today. Details grille, 12 gauge front axle air bag kit, Box bumper, 8" pipes, new Battery boxes for both sides and a lot lot more. I'll pick up tomorrow. I have some time this week to get it going pretty good. I am basically replacing everything. Going with new 15" air cleaners instead of the 13". One piece window conversion. Custom mirror brackets. Everything really

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Mike L

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2010
Messages
2,011
Location
Texas
Occupation
Self employed field mechanic
Wow that's a sharp lookin Pete! And a lot of truck on a small trailer!
 

Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Couldn't be happier with the way the shop turned out. Got the opening much bigger, hung some T5 high output lights, had the electrician drop some outlets, built a 24' long 24" bench with an upper shelf, hung paneling, trimmed it all out, and put about 5 gallons of flat white on all the brick and block to really lighten it up. Got some new tools, LED work lights, and a stereo. I couldn't be happier considering it was a dirt floor a month ago.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
This bed was a huge job to remove. Felt like 200 huck bolts. I ate through a 4" grinder wheel and had to get a new one.

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What a massive wiring harness for a few lights. It was a one harness does all. It had A/C, heat, load lamps, and everything else. It's gonna be hard to throw it away.
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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
Got the entire interior removed from the cab and sleeper. I have a guy in Navada who is going to provide all the interior. He does a lot of Peterbilt's, especially 359's since Paccar doesn't sell the replacement interior panels.

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Got the truck out and finally washed it down inside and out. I installed new door checks and new hood stops. Also have the hood guide rollers to replace and a check cable.

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We got the shop completely finished inside. It's bright now and I love it.

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We also finished the block wall outside, trimmed the opening and installed a LED exterior light. The mood is good down there now. We might frame out the rest of the concrete since it meets the front porch. That way we could weather proof and secure this project because it won't fit in all the way. We'll see. I can get pretty impulsive.

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Fastdirt

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 16, 2010
Messages
743
Location
GA
He couldn't turn around on a 16" block.

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It's already filling up in there. I hope to keep on top of the mess up.
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Here is the painted drop visor, the Talladega extended drop cowl panels already painted, and the sleeper door with the window. This should be the only 379 with a door window. So we will have all three windows in a 36" sleeper. I got the idea from looking at the 2014 and 2015 367's I think. Still have to cut the inside panel to fit the trim. The door skin had to be replaced with the right skin that accepts the flush mounted window.

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JNB

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2012
Messages
823
Location
North Texas
Occupation
Flyin' low and rollin' slow...
Nice to have your baby home, eh? At least you know it'll get done right from here on out.
 
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