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Diary of a SEMA Build 2017

Week 10 - February 17, 2017


As I feared the hood had no residual paint. It is basically bare steel. Travis and I kicked around some options for a paint scheme, but I think it best to see how the fenders come out before going down that road very far.

The miscellaneous parts are done, covered in Rust Block and awaiting paint day.











Week 9 - February 10, 2017



Travis has coated one of the test panels. He put on three coats of glossy clear coat so we can see color changes. It came out really interesting. The paint has several tones of red and contrasts beautifully with the bare steel. The surface is not smooth, but he will sand it smooth and put down three more coats, sand again then put a final coat of satin clear down. We should see results next week.

The Lab tests are in. The coating contains mostly aluminum, BUT it also contains lead, chromium and cadmium. These are not good for people. I’m glad we didn’t media blast these parts and get these metals airborne. I will have to work out a way to deal with this before we do the cab.

week8.1.chemtest

We brought the hood back to de-rust. I’m not sure there is any paint at all under the rust. We will see shortly.



Week 8 - February 3, 2017

The rear wheel tubs are in and they are YUUUGE.

The second unforeseen problem has arisen. The original rust proof coating of the 1958 Chevy that is on the interior of body panels is counteracting Evapo-Rust’s ability to remove rust. I scraped off a sample and took it to a local testing lab. I have a suspicion that there are some pretty toxic metals in that paint.

Also, stopped by Travis' garage and snagged two tubs of miscellaneous parts to de-rust. Now it is time for them to get a bath.
Week 7 - January 27, 2017


Travis is getting the layout of the truck perfected. He ordered the tubs for the rear wheels.

The first rendering of the truck is done but is not perfect. We needed it so our guys can take it to the O’Reilly Auto Parts manager’s conference in St. Louis. The cab is still rusty in the rendering but it will have to suffice for now.





Week 6 - January 20, 2017

The frame rails are being drawn up and the first model is here.

We picked up some random rusty body parts from our favorite scrap parts dealer, Mr. Lee Roy Horn. They will be de-rusted, and then Travis will try out various clear coat combinations on them. I’m anticipating some really spectacular contrasts in the old paint and bare steel.







Week 5 - January 13, 2017


Well here is the first big issue this week. The Duramax engine and transmission are too big to fit in under the hood. Travis, being an original thinker, had an alternative. He suggested we mount the engine behind the cab! Needless to say, this project is getting cooler by the minute.

The doors are de-rusted and came out perfect.




Week 4 - January 2, 2017


I got this e-mail from Travis:
"I talked to Tyler the guy I know with the Duramax over the weekend he is dead set on 5k for everything that we need off that truck. I spent a few hours looking for another one all over the country the cheapest I found was 6200 shipped for one with 230k. I did find some engines for 3500 and transmissions for 1k but no telling if we would get everything we needed. His has 196k and I know we could get everything we needed off the truck. It's your call as you're paying the bill I can tell him we will take it or I can continue to look. Sent from my iPhone
Travis Ball
www.ballmetalfab.com"

We got the engine and other parts.
Natasha (my wife and business partner) and I are off to Tennessee to shoot 16 episodes of Performance TV for the Velocity Channel and will be back in four days. It’s a whirlwind around here.

January 6th 2017
Back home! Travis has the cab off of the chassis and sent pictures. He will pick up the engine and parts this week.
We are getting the doors to start the de-rusting project. We rigged up a recirculating pump to get the larger items clean. It was a little on the messy side but WOW!

Brian Lohnes the host from Motorhead Garage on Velocity found out about our build and sent me a nice note:
David,
That truck is awesome and yes, I am an addict of thing large, old and slow.

I am also an Evapo-Rust evangelist having tested the product and loved it!
http://bangshift.com/general-news/bangshift-product-test-evapo-rust-does-it-really-work/
Great to meet you and your product is no joke!

The word of this herculean project is starting to spread.

Week 3 - December 29, 2016

Christmas is over. I’m glad. Not much happened on DeMented. I did meet with Robbie Bryant of KEG Media in Ft. Smith AR. His company does renderings of SEMA projects, manages the vehicles at SEMA, promotes projects on-line and works with other companies to get sponsorships for parts. I hired him. Done and done!
Week 2 - December 21, 2016


The truck has been delivered and Travis has given it a bath. The original owners had painted their company name on the hood and door. “DeMent” in cursive script is barely visible. The truck has now been named “DeMented”. Whether it refers to the truck’s outrageousness or the craziness of attempting this project remains to be seen.
There are lots of decisions to be made about the direction of the truck.
1) Lifted or slammed? – I opted for slammed. It’s a cool look but the main consideration is that this is a show truck, and it is hard to see a lifted truck unless you provide a ladder.
2) Use the original frame or fabricate one? Travis has to fabricate one to slam the truck. Plus it adds cool factor.
3) Engine? - With Travis’ input I chose a Chevrolet Duromax diesel.
4) Manual or automatic transmission? I went automatic because it’s easier to drive long distance and we may already have one.
5) Original interior or modern? – I want this to be a drivable work of art and be comfortable so I went with modern.
6) Exhaust stacks, grass burners or out the back? – I was a kid in the 70’s, and I like grass burners.
There are many, many more decisions to be made, but that’s enough for now. Christmas is just around the corner.
Week 1 - December 15, 2016


2017 will be Harris International Labs 20th year in business, and to celebrate, I decided we need a cool SEMA build that expresses our company’s uniqueness and showcases the look Evapo-Rust gives to vintage paint that has been rusted. The look we named “the Throwback Look” is impossible to create by other rust removal methods and gives vehicles a vintage appearance without getting “rat rod rust” all over anyone who touches the vehicle.
Through a friend I found a talented young builder named Travis Ball who had just opened his own shop the week before and was willing to try a crazy build. His shop is named Ball Metal Fabrication, and you can follow it on Instagram @ballmetalfab. I got some reference and looked at work he had done, and we came to an agreement to build the baddest truck in Las Vegas by next September.
SEMA is a tough show to get noticed at. There are hundreds of spectacular rides by talented builders, and they start to blend together after a bit. We needed something that would have aesthetic appeal and be over the top crazy. So we began a search for the perfect candidate. A big truck seemed to fit the bill. We looked at 1950’s and 40’s cab over engines, grain trucks, firetrucks, tow trucks and other specialty trucks but none seemed quite right. Then in early December, Brett Ingle, our plant manager, sent me a text with pictures of a truck he had known about for years. One look at the 1958 Chevrolet Viking 40 and I knew he was on to something. So half the front office, Travis and I drove out to inspect it. The owner and I settled on $750 plus delivery.

Well, there can always be more excitement and projects to conquer, right? We are going to put Evapo-Rust and its team to the test this year. With the magnificent design and fabrication ability of Ball Metal Fab and KEG Media here locally, we are going to transform a super sweet 1958 Chevy Viking into a beast machine. Check our blog weekly for updates. We are super excited to share this “Diary of a SEMA Build” with all of you. If you have any questions about or project or Evapo-Rust Super Safe Rust Remover, do not hesitate to call or email us! Talk to you soon! Evapo-Rust Team