Rat Rod Truck or Hot Rod Truck: Beer Budget Build

Build a rat rod truck or a hot rod truck cheaper and easier than you thought possible with plans from the master of beer budget hot rods, Chester Greenhalgh. Chester shows you how to do it ALL for the least amount of money invested; yet what you get is safer, more reliable and way better performing.

How to Build a Hot Rod Rat Rod Truck

You’ll learn how to go from a “field find” like this …
rat rod truck field find

To something like this reliable performance, daily driver rat rod truck or hot rod truck … for way under $3000!
rat rod truck

The author of this new rat rod truck beer-budget building bible, Chester Greenhalgh, developed a cult following in the hot rod world in the 1980s when he released the now legendary “How to Build a T-Bucket Roadster for Under $3000”. When it went out of print, people gladly paid over $200 for a copy on eBay and Amazon — and then we worked with Chester to introduce the new digital edition for less than $20! His new eBook on budget building a rat rod truck or hot rod truck is destined to be his next legendary contribution to the rod building world.

“This is how we made hot rods in the 50s when I was a teenager. There is a whole new generation of young bloods out there, disgusted with Detroit’s (and Tokyo’s) computerized nightmares, that would like to build a car themselves with their own two hands — not state-of-the-art, but just like their fathers and grandfathers did back in the day.”

Today, undoubtedly the least expensive and simplest way to go hot rodding is by mating a classic pickup truck body to a modern chassis and V8 engine. That’s exactly what Chester shows you step-by-detailed-step in his new eBook, “Hot Rod or Rat Rod Truck: How to Mount a Cheap Antique Truck Body on a Late Model Pickup Chassis for Under $3000“.

Chester Greenhalgh has spent half a century building hot rods, for himself, friends and customers: all on a working man’s budget, using plain old everyday tools and a ton of creativity.

Getting the most performance, pleasure and attention for the least amount of money is the principal that has guided Chester all his hot rod building life. Don’t believe it? Take a look at Chester’s first rat rod truck: a 1922 Dodge bucket and pickup box on a Model A frame with 1940 Ford flathead V8 and running gear that he and his brothers built in the 50s.

Chester Greenhalgh rat rod truck roots

With scrounged parts and a cash outlay of only $50, it wasn’t “California” and it definitely wasn’t magazine quality, but it could leave 20 feet of rubber anywhere, anytime and was a hell of a lot of fun to drive!

Better Rat Rod Truck Formula

After six decades of hot rod building experience, Chester has found the formula to get the maximum bang for the buck in the 21st Century: by mounting an antique pickup truck body on a late model pickup frame!

This combination results in modern-day power, performance and reliability teamed with classic hot rod style and the satisfaction of being able to say, “I did it all myself.”

Some people might call this rat rod truck building. But according to Chester, “Rat rod truck doesn’t necessarily mean black primer and rust, but refers to a cool hot rod truck built in a home garage on a beer budget.”

“For me, the best part of the day is when I’ve finished what I wanted to do for the day, taking a few minutes to sit by my project drinking a beer, admiring what I’ve just done and planning what I want to do next. This is what continues to draw me to rod building.”

That’s the background. Now, here’s what you’ll get to put you firmly on the low-buck hot rod and rat rod truck  road.

Table of Contents

  • Forward: The story of what happened to Chester when he disappeared from the hot rod world after authoring the legendary “How to Build a T-Bucket Roadster for Under $3000
  • Preface: How Chester’s hot rod roots influenced this eBook and what you can expect if you build a hot rod or rat rod truck  following the plans in this eBook.
  • Getting Started: How easy it is, when you know how to do it, to mount a classic pickup truck body (Ford, Chevy, GMC, Jeep, International, whatever) from the 40s or 50s onto a cheap 1970s Chevy (or other) pickup truck chassis, which is wider than the old truck — but, don’t worry cause Chester’s gonna show you how to do it cheap ‘n easy.
  • Prepping the Frame: How to trim off excess frame mounts, relocate the fuel tank and drop the chassis 5″ (the cheap and easy way) for that cool, low rat rod truck look. Plus, an easy way to mount pro-street wide tires without narrowing the rear end.
  • Mounting the Body: How to center the antique body on the modern frame and how to channel the body to make that hot rod or rat rod truck even lower.
  • Making the Firewall: You want it to look good when you pop the hood or tilt the front end, so here’s how to clean up all the unnecessary crap from that old firewall and make it smooth and nice for the least amount of money.The first use of Chester’s innovative template making.
  • Building the Floorboards: Your donor truck floorboards are likely to be trashed, so here’s how to build nice, new ones (with some creative tips on where to get materials for little or no cost) to go with your channeled body. More of Chester’s quick and easy templates.
  • Mounting the Steering Column: How to mount the donor truck steering column and brace the dash.
  • Adapting the Swing Pedals: Making the clutch connection, mounting the brake power booster and getting the pedals to fit and work in the old cab. And, don’t forget that the throttle’s a pedal, too, and Chester shows how to easily mount it.
  • Making the Tilt Front End: Guaranteed to be everybody’s favorite chapter. Shortening the donor frame so the antique doghouse fits on it. How to weld the bumper, hood and doghouse into one tiltable unit — reinforced, of course. (Plus, an introduction to Chester’s “Widowmaker” grinder).
  • Mounting the Gas Tank: Eliminating one of Detroit’s bad ideas — the side saddle tank! Relocating the tank to where it should be.
  • Rebuilding the Rear Bumper: How to narrow and reinforce the bumper while making it ready for a trailer.
  • Fabricating Exhaust Stacks: Quick and easy 3″ stacks and a Chester trick to give them a chrome finish for $10!
  • Driveshaft: Chester’s driveshaft shortening skills always draw attention and he’s back with more. We won’t spoil the surprise, but you might find yourself heading for the lake with a bar of soap.
  • Brakes: How to utilize the donor truck’s modern, safe brake system.
  • Engine Compartment: When you tilt that front end, you’ll want to dazzle ’em. How to do it without the expense of a lot of chrome.
  • Electrical System: “Don’t let the wiring scare you,” is what Chester says and the way he explains it so simply and clearly will make this chapter worth more than the cost of the eBook alone.
  • Interior: First, choose your comfortable cruising position and then let Chester help you design a seat to fit. Plus, how to make the dash unique, with inexpensive gauges and what you should avoid.
  • Flatbed or Pickup Box?: Just because your classic truck field find has a trashed bed you shouldn’t be discouraged, especially if you’re on a limited budget. Chester shows you how to construct an attractive, useful flatbed using scrap metal and a nifty multi-purpose fuel tank protector that can be taken off for use as a welding table or a campsite BBQ (talk about clever!)
  • Battery Box: How to use material you can pick most everyday from people’s garbage as a sturdy, attractive battery box.
  • Radiator: Chester’s the master of scrounging radiators and shows you how to use either a wide crossflow radiator from your donor truck or an alternative upright radiator.
  • Rear Fenders: How to make hot rod style rear fenders that move with your rear axle so you won’t have to ever worry about rubbing when carrying or towing a heavy load, and do it for only $50!
  • Bill of Materials: Putting his money where his mouth is, Chester gives you a detailed Bill of Materials showing just what he laid out recently on his hot rod truck build — and it’s less than half the $3000 budget. Proves that Chester’s not BS’ing when he says you can do it on a true beer budget.
  • Title and Plates: Needless to say, you don’t want to waste time and money on this process and Chester’s experience licensing hot rods all over the country the past 50 years proves invaluable.
  • “Oddities” — Some other Cars I’ve built: In this bonus chapter, you’ll no doubt get some additional hot rod inspiration looking at and reading the descriptions of some of Chester’s amazing builds ranging from a 392 Hemi powered 1980s Dodge Rampage pickup (with tilt front end), his 375 HP Corvette powered Ford Ranger (sorry, Ford guys) and his “Deuce” on a Model A frame, along with the story of his “wildest ride” in a 500 cubic inch Cadillac powered VW Beetle!
  • Tips ‘n Tricks: Another bonus chapter with a wide variety of Chester-like approaches to doing things on a budget. Chester’s economical home sandblasting setup using beach sand is another tip worth more than the price of the eBook!
  • Adios: Chester’s unique thanks and goodbye chapter.
  • On a Human Note: A personal message from Chester.
  • Preview: A photo of what you can expect to see in Chester’s 3rd eBook.

Like we said, this new hot rod and rat rod truck plan eBook by Chester Greenhalgh is destined to become legendary, just as his “How to Build a T-Bucket Roadster for Under $3000” did.

How to Build a Hot Rod Rat Rod Truck

“Hot Rod or Rat Rod Truck: How to Mount a Cheap Antique Truck Body on a Late Model Pickup Chassis for Under $3000 is a 107-page eBook featuring over 200 full color photographs and illustrations covering every facet of this easy-to-build, low-buck approach to hot rodding. And, it’s yours for only $12.99! Just click the Download Now button and be ready to download your own personal copy immediately.

But wait — here’s your special deal on the Chester Greenhalgh eBook library: When you order two of his cool eBooks you get 10% off. Order 3 and you save 15%. Order all 4 of these terrific hot rod how-to eBooks and save a big 20%!

4 how to build hot rod eBooks
The informative and practical Chester Greenhalgh hot rod how-to eBook library.

Take advantage of this opportunity to also order “How to Build a Full-On Radical Custom on a Beer Budget!” as well as How to Build a T-Bucket Hot Rod Roadster for Under $3000: kickin’ it old skool and the fun new Projects With Lawn Mower Engines and save up to 20% when you order them all!

Make your choice below to securely purchase through PayPal and then immediately download tons of great hot rod “how to” information that will save you thousands of dollars, make your projects go faster without unnecessary frustration and keep you entertained as a bonus!

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Once you’ve completed your payment using PayPal’s secure server you’ll receive an email with your personal download link and instructions for downloading along with your receipt number. Thank you, and don’t hesitate to use our Contact Form if you have any questions or problems.