My well-optioned ’05 Dakota Laramie fenders and box were seriously rusting out prompting me to start looking for another truck; new or newer (Ram/Dodge only). But damn, this has been my favorite truck I’ve had: AWD, V8, leather, etc. Don’t need to tell ya what prices are for trucks. Sure, could’ve forked out for a newer or new one; though mine has 84k on it and just bugged me to spend the cash. Decided to do a body transplant on mine. After a long hunt found a pristine box cheaper than I thought, and ordered re-pop fenders. So began the 4 month project. Had a broken exhaust manifold bolt that was fun to remove (plus two more snapped bolts to drill out), installed new struts, shocks, and spent days cleaning up the frame and recoating it. Sanded down the box underside and coated it. Next on to the body shop for painting. I got to know the owners well as they did the paint on my ’63 Plymouth. They were up to their ears in work and I said I can come in to do the prep work and they took me up on the offer saving me a few extra weeks waiting to get it painted. While I hadn’t planned on it, doing this work saved a bunch of money. The cab, tailgate, and doors (except a section of the driver’s door) were in nice shape needing minimal work. Opted to have the fenders and box painted, not the entire truck. Well, thought it’s a 16 year old truck I’ll be driving daily so the slight color miss-match wasn’t a big deal to me. Now retired anyway, the truck will get a lot less use than it did. Had figured the resto could maybe run $10k…it was around $4k. I’m happy with it; but now cringe driving it in crap weather, lol.