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Old 07-29-2008, 11:30 AM
imagineer imagineer is offline
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Default Shorten a fiberglass truck cap

File this one in the, "You're going to do WHAT!?!?" category...

I recently picked up a '93 Dakota for a project. I have an opportunity to pick up a near perfect $700 fiberglass cap for it for $30.
The problem, my truck has the 6'-6" bed and the cap is for an 8' bed.

I've done fiberglass repair before. It's not fun, but I know what to expect.

I would end up re-painting the cap anyways, so I'm thinking I can take out the side windows from the cap and then cut the cap in half crossways, taking out 18" or so from the middle. Then it should just be a matter of bringing the halves together, reinforce and weld the base rails, glass it together from the inside, fill & spray gel coat the outside then modify the windows to fit the shorter opening. Simple, right?

Can anyone out there enlighten me as to what my naive ambition is overlooking?
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Old 07-29-2008, 01:14 PM
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dubby dubby is offline
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The only thing I can see that you're overlooking is that the glass is most likely tempered...
I've always had more time than money.

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Old 07-29-2008, 03:16 PM
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Walker Walker is offline
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Depends on the brand of the shell, but you might be able to cut the front section loose at the corner and take out a section there. Then the only repairs you have to do are right on a corner.
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Old 07-29-2008, 03:47 PM
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A photo would help, but close to an end would be best.
You do the best you can with what you've got.
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:43 PM
kbs2244 kbs2244 is offline
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Check around on the one you have.
Is there a crosswise seam 18 inches from something?
That may be where the factory extends them.
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:50 PM
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Cavalry Cavalry is offline
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dont know about your particular truck but I know many of the beds are tapered over the length. Make sure the taper is going to work for you.

Speaking of taper make sure the glass is not tapered as well. Other than that I say saw away for the price!
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:05 PM
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TEK TEK is offline
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sell it and buy one that fits......
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Old 07-29-2008, 07:54 PM
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LW Hiway LW Hiway is offline
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sell it and buy one that fits......
What, is the fun in that.

Stiffeners/diminutive glassed in supports at the points of rejoining can be added in such a way as to allow for inherent flexing that would normally be had while in use, but still keep the lines of the shell from sagging.

Don't over build those areas as it's not necessary. For a shell, this is an easy task if you've worked enough glass in the past to not see this as a learning project, go for it.

Think boats and their repairs and you'll be fine. Plus, I see it as a huge savings over the price of a new shell. Them things are expensive. I'm pricing them now for my Toypup.

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Old 07-30-2008, 02:36 AM
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Silverback Silverback is offline
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Sure you can do it... if you know what you're doing it might come out quite well... but how many hours and how many $ of supplies will you go through when you're done?

If that doesn't stop you I'd spend a lot of time measuring to make sure that you don't find that the part or the bed has an odd taper or shape that will surprise you after you cut it all up or you could end up with a big piece of fiberglass trash.
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Old 07-30-2008, 11:09 AM
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Sberry Sberry is offline
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You are already spending 700 on one that doesnt fit to start with, would be a good start towards one that does.
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