New Member
Skip 1st section of text if not interested in my backstory, skills, knowledge and experience.

Hi, I am new to this forum. Just going to list off my abilities and expierence before people start shutting me down feel free to skip this just don't be a condescending douche. Me and my father used to run a reputable auto body repair and performance build type of shop out of our home and have never recieved a rating below 4 stars with me doing most of the work, I take pride in my craftsmanship. (total of 6 garages, 2000sq ft shop and a decent sized professional paint booth on the same property as my home.) Now that my fathers fight is over(cancers a bitch:/) I inherited the shop and everything in it. I've done and perfected many things over the years of working with my dad. Including; simple body work, repairing rust, dents, hail damage, and fiberglass work aswell. Also I've rebuilt many 6 cylinder motors, and a few LS motors for my Camaro. Welding, tig welding, brazing, light metal fabrication, making quality motor mounts, automotive painting thanks to the paint booth at our house, aswell as an above average knowledge of anything automotive most from highschool automotive classes, research college classes and experience. I know im missing some skills but you get the point Im not some noob so no need for bullshit. I have just about everything an autobody shop should have besides the really exspensive equipment, have everything needed to prep, paint, fabricate, weld, and build what I want with plenty of materials. Due to the shop me and my father ran I have garages and attics full of assorted truck, car, and engine parts.

Now down to the reason I am posting. Currently I have two canidates sitting in my garage for a prerunner build which I would slowly like to build on free time during my studies, I have more than sufficient funds to do so but do not plan on buying everything at once due to the snow that will be falling soon I'd like to begin the build with the prerunner look then get into the long travel suspension and all the other goodies. I'd like my build to be 100% unique and strong for relatively cheap(me and my college buddy are having a build off over the winter to see who can build the cheapest but best and strongest prerunner (the loser has to build a 550hp LS engine for the winner pretty high stakes haha) . Id like to use as much stock metal as possible (I know it won't be light but I can deduct weight from other places) even if I have to refab the parts and put the time in it will definatly be worth it. The vehicles Id like to work with are below. The bet doesn't really matter to me as long as I end up with a sweet prerunner.

1) 1996 F150 4.9l I6, 5spd, 8 ft bed, single cab 2wd 220k miles almost perfect mechanically and all new STOCK suspenion along with many new engine components. Fenders are rusted but I would end up getting fiberglass ones anyways and the bed has mild rust near wheel well area, I would like to maybe cut the bedsides to allow for larger wheels and take 6in to a foot off the length of the bed or something along those lines. Payed 1400$ f

2) Next would be a Chevy 1989 2500 V8 4x4 3 door 120k miles with normal bed that I've had for quite some time. Motor is currently running on 6 of the 8 cylinders haha also auto trans slips but 4x4 functions flawlessly. Cab corners and rocker panels are rusty but I have repair kits for that. Truck isnt as bad as it sounds but I wouldn't know where to start if I used the Chevy for my build since I've done most of my research on the 1996 f150.
Now that you know mostly everything the real questions are; Do any of you have any input on what truck I should build that would be most reliable and most cost efficient without having to scower the web for parts that arent overpriced? Also have any of you ever cut up an 8ft bed for a prerunner , if so how did you do it and pictures if possible. Thoughts and ideas from people who have experience or have done something similar yourself would be great I know most will say the F150 because they make great prerunners and 2wds are way less expensive, but Id like as much input as possible on DIY prerunner beds and how I should build either vehicle to be very reliable and strong on the dunes.

Any comments, pics of your build, suggestions, facts, help, or any input at all would be greatly appreciated. Sooner the better, thanks.


Well-Known Member
What are you prerunning? How will your contest be won? If mud, hill climbing, big boulders or snow are involved, go with the chebby. If it's a contest of speed with big bumps, jumps or gravel roads go with the rusty ford. Lots of suspension stuff out there, if you don't buy it make it, if your not building a race truck mild steel works. Yes plenty of long beds have been cut, saws all will take care if rusty beds in a hurry, get fiberglass bed sides and loose the whole bed. Good luck, post pictures, start a build thread.