Aaron Anderson’s True Home Grown Rat Rod

Aaron Anderson’s True Home Grown Rat Rod

The story of Aaron’s Rat Rod goes like this:

In 2007 I worked at a dealership in the local town that had a 1936 Dodge dump truck sitting in a grass lot behind a building. I’d have to trim weeds around it when the dealership got slow.

I’ve always bought rat rod magazines and always thought about building one, but just never found a body that wasn’t outrageous in price. So one day I asked the owner of the dealership if he’d ever sell that ole’ dump truck out back. He said “for you, $600”. I said “consider it sold” and I saved the money and I bought it.

Aaron Anderson's True Home Grown Rat Rod

A year went by and I started a new job at the local junk yard. There I bought every possible part off of all sorts of vehicles to help with building my truck. I’ve always built 4×4’s and low riders while growing up, but this truck was on a whole new level of mind-creating for me!

I used a 1950 Ford truck frame and flathead engine, a Ford 9″ rear end and a 3 speed manual transmission. Later on I changed the flathead over to a 383 Dodge engine with a 727 transmission craving more power!


Not having the metal fabricating machines and tools or money, I chopped the top anyway. To fill in the gaps on the roof and doors after the chop, I used old wrenches my grandfather passed down to me. They are probably the most “eye catching” item that everybody notices at first glance.

Then they see my “Amish Air Ride” – I am able to raise or lower the rear about 4″ with the turn of a crank. I was tired of being limited on where to drive and now I can go just about anywhere. Everybody that see’s my creation just scratches their head’s. Air Ride was just too modern for my Rat Rod, so I had to improvise!

Aaron Anderson's True Home Grown Rat Rod

In 2011 I changed the engine to a 413 Dodge engine I had bought at the junk yard out of an RV. I bought a duel tunnel ram intake for the 413 and slapped it all in the rat rod and had in running within 6 hours. That motor started out okay, but it never ran right and there was a ticking noise from the beginning. Driving it to a local show that motor threw a rod bearing. So I went back to the old faithful 383. It’s faster than that 413 and looks just as nice!

I love driving my rat rod to all the local shows. This truck was built completely by me with a little help from my local neighbors, friends, and family. All the parts – every piece, came from Wabash County, Indiana. So far I don’t think that I’ve spent over $1,500 in the purchasing and building of my Dodge rat rod.

Aaron Anderson's True Home Grown Rat Rod

About Roadkill Customs 313 Articles
Roadkill Customs has evolved into the de facto resource dedicated to low budget, back yard builders and do-it-yourself hot rodders...

2 Comments

Comments are closed.