As is the case with most new truck styles, there is not much available to change the style to your personal tastes. This is true with the new 2002 Dodge Ram. Few manufacturers have stepped up and designed products for this new truck. One of the items we wanted to do to the truck is to remove the big, bulky rear bumper in favor of a smooth, roll pan.
Sir Michael’s roll pan to the rescue
Fortunately, the lack of attention to new vehicles was not the case with the folks at Sir Michael’s in Huntington Beach, California. They have been making steel roll pans for over 25 years and already had a pan available for the new model Ram. We were anxious to see how to install one and what the finished result would be.
We picked up the roll pan at the Sir Michaels facility and immediately noticed that the seams were welded perfectly and we only needed to clean up the welds and bondo the license plate box to get it ready for paint. We took the raw roll pan to Starbucks Custom in Riverside, California for all the paint and body work. When the paint was done, we went back to the Sir Michaels facility to have them do the mounting of the roll pan. In observing the installation, it was obvious that Dodge made some dramatic changes to the body.
The older Dodge Rams were put together solidly, but the new body style went a bit further. The rear bumpers used to come off with just a couple bolts and the hitch was an add-on. With the new Rams, the hitch is an integral part of the bumper.
The bumper itself has attachment brackets that loop up and over the frame, being secured with the bed bolts. This added feature makes it more difficult to get the bumper off. After removing all the bolts and the main rear bumper, we had two Sir Michaels’ employees physically lift the bed up, so we could remove the hitch and attachment brackets. Once the bed bolts were securely back in place, we were able to complete the installation of the roll pan.
While our roll pan was exactly square, we did notice the bed fenders were a little off. This showed up in the joint line between the roll pan and the fenders. Additionally, the Dodge Ram beds have a small lip on the rear edge that must be ground off to allow the roll pan to seat properly. Furthermore, the grommet around the rear tire lowering hole must also be removed to fit the roll pan properly. This installation requires the use of a Hidden Hitch. Once installed however, we will lose the space for the full sized spare tire, which we decided to secure in the bed.
How does it look?
Once completed, the rear of our 2002 Dodge Ram looked a lot better. The gorgeous Sir Michaels roll pan with all of the attention to detail including the license plate light really cleaned up the look of the truck. It also lightened to the rear end, accentuating the truck’s rake even more. This is one quick, somewhat easy and inexpensive mod that you can actually do to your new Ram now, not sometime in the next 6 months.