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Old 07-31-2011, 01:01 PM
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Chopping Top On Old Semi

Hello, new here.

I was searching around for some info on chopping the the roof down on my KW and didnt get too far so figured id see if somebody could point me in the right direction. I havent decided yet how far I would like to chop it, or if I would like to add a Rake to it

Im completely new to this so dont be afraid to point out the obvious to me.

My two main questions are what to do to get the a-pillar lined back up? do you bend it and get custom glass or stretch the roof to meet it.

What do you do about windows and windsheilds.

I have attached a picture and can get a better one if needed. I will also be chopping the sleeper down to match the cab of the truck.

Thank you.


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Old 07-31-2011, 04:51 PM
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I love the old Kitty Whoppers. I have never seen one with a chop job but I bet it will be a challenge. I like them with a visor mounted and all dolled up.But it's your baby.Good luck.
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Old 07-31-2011, 06:32 PM
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Sounds like you have considered your options. I personally would rake the pillars back by removing a notch in the bottom and rewelding. You would do the same with the door window opening. Of course you would have to cut new glass, which I would just get a good glass cutter to trim the old glass to the new shape. Shortening the sleeper should be relatively easy and straight forward.

I just watched a thing on the Big Truck show last night featuring the old KW work horses for NASA. Sure was interesting. Their lines were very similar to yours, but doubt that you have the V-12 under the hood.

Trees
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Old 08-01-2011, 06:44 AM
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Nope, no buzzen dozen for me. I was going to put one in it though. But then I decided that I will be using the truck to haul our pulling tractor on weekends and such and suddenly the v12 idea got dropped. If I had just a toy truck though it would have one. I still plan on putting the Extended Hood on it even though it is not required for the smaller 14L inline 6. Kinda funny saying the "small" 14L. Back in the day the extended hood was needed for the three big Hosses. The KTA1150 Cummins (19L inline 6), the 3408 Cat (18L V8) and the Buzzen Dozen, the 12v71 Detroit Two Stroke (14L V12).

This on has a 14L Small Cam Cummins. That will be replaced with a newer Cummins so that I can get some good fuel economy and still have plenty of power.


Im actually friends with a glass artist, so he may be able to help out on that issue.

Im thinking I would take it down maybe 4": but I think I would have to go out and visualize it some more.

Its a slow project im in no hurry, just getting ideas and parts around as I see them.

If the Chop seems to be too above my skill level or just too expensive, I could always add a drop visor to simulate it. But I would really like the chopped look.

and Just an FYI for those who dont know, the Cabs on these trucks are all Aluminum.

Thanks again, once I get the body work figured out, Im sure ill be asking about the interior
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Old 08-01-2011, 10:07 AM
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cool project. chop it on paper first,,,take a picture, cut it in half about where you want to chop it, over lap the 2 halves, till you see what you want. you can lean the 'A' pillars back , pie cuts at the base..... but to lean the A and B pillars inward, may create alot more problems , ie; the door windows will be at a different angle, the channels will have to be moved, IF, there's room in side the doors, then if you do that the latches may be in the way. I hope you can weld alumimum....if not,,, you will be pretty good at it when youre done
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:32 AM
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if you are not good at are take pix and chop with surors
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knighthawk
..... but to lean the A and B pillars inward, may create alot more problems , ie; the door windows will be at a different angle, the channels will have to be moved, IF, there's room in side the doors, then if you do that the latches may be in the way.
I don't know much about chopping, but I thought during a top chop they widened the top to keep the angle right for the windows.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:13 PM
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Im thinking widening the roof will be easiest. That I doubt I will have the skills to do (making the spacer piece), but I could surprise my self I guess. I could get a chunk out of a junkyard for pennies though too and maybe make that work ?

I would not lean the B-Pillar at all. Only the a if done, but now that you mention it, then the door would have to be modified to fit the angle as well. Might be easiest to widen the roof and what needs to be widened of the door.

I like the idea of chopping it on paper thanks. Ill do that this afternoon.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:22 PM
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There is a video that you could check out by Ron Covell 800-768-0705
www.covell.biz I think it would answer a lot of your questions.
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:30 PM
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The top chop DVD is # 1000-17
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:52 PM
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Thanks for the tip on the dvd, might get it.

Got a photo off of truck paper of a W900A extended hood. This one has the 60" sleeper though. But playing around in paint.net gave me a good idea of what things could look like, here are the different levels. The inches are approximate.

Original



4"



6"



8"



16" Just for laughs, I would never chop it that far.









Im thinking in the 4-6 range probaby 4 or so Because I still want to put a nice visor on it. Id have to chop a front picture to get a feel for that. maybe Ill get more creative tonite.
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Old 08-01-2011, 03:29 PM
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I think you should check and see how much room you need in there to drive. I have seen those low ride drivers, but if they have to, they can raise up.
Also, subtle changes sometimes look the best. JMO.
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Old 08-01-2011, 04:02 PM
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It will have low pro seats in it so a 4" drop will not affect head room. Visibility will obviously be like driving low with a long nose anyways. im going to look it over again though. Im really starting to lean towards 4". i think it will be the best looking and most realistic.

Heres a photo album of the building of a chopped W900A Extended Hood.

http://www.elizabethtruckcenter.com/...index.php?&p=1
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Old 08-01-2011, 06:00 PM
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The 6 inch chop is the most appealing to me. Looks as if there is enough head room to sit high enough to have good forward viability, especially if you extend the hood. I may be wrong, but looking at the pictures, the doors and wind shield pillars are vertical (not tilted inward) thus chopping the top does not make a compound angle on the pillars or the door window frame so a simple tilt back of each would work nicely. Of course the top member of the door window frame would have to be shortened, but again, no compound angles involved. the window regulators and channels would remain the same inside the doors but the up stop would have to be adjusted. Simply changing the angle of the front of the glass and removing 6 inches (or amount of selected chop) from the top of the glass is as simple as it gets.

The aluminum cab can be a little quirky to work with, but you can take 2X1/8 inch wide aluminum strips and rivet them above and below your intended cut lines across the back and around the side. They will not only serve as a guide for a nice straight cut, but will ensure the aluminum remains rigid. When you are ready to join the cab, you can get a good TIG welder to weld the two strips together on the inside of the cab and run a bead on the outside seam. Cover with a stripe if you like. Makes for a neat job and very difficult to ever know it was done.

Trees
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Old 08-01-2011, 06:08 PM
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Thanks for the info trees. I have a neighbor who is a fantastic tig welder, Im sure I could get him to bring one of his TIGs up to our shop and burn it all in for me.

Im new to the terminology buit think I understand what your getting at with the compound angles and all.

Being that the only angle I have to deal with is simply the A-pillar raking back I would simply tilt the legs that are left after the chop to meet each other?

Then i would simply take the glass to the guy I know and have him cut it?

The glass is heavily frosted around the edges and scratched badly. I could ask his opinion on whether or not i should save it or go new.

Whats the best tool to use for the cut?

Thanks again for all of the help, Im going to go do a double check on the ceiling height in it to make sure there is room to sit. I normally drive with the seat on the ground in everything, so im used to the position and limited visibility.
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