When Dennis Phillips took early delivery of his '02 Dodge Ram, the initial intention was to do absolutely nothing to this truck. It's reason for existing was to be a tow vehicle for one of Dennis' other customs. Not long after buying the truck, he found himself standing in the middle of Ekstensive Metalworks' showroom, in Houston, talking with the man, the myth, and the legend, Bill Carlton. After an in-depth conversation with Bill about having one of the first full custom Rams of the '02 model year, Dennis started pondering the thought. By the time he got home,his mind was set, so he called Bill and dropped a deposit for a groundpunishing suspension.

The '02 Ram has since had an abundance of modifications done to it. The most visible is the lowered stance that comes from the Ekstensive makeover. It consists of 3/8-inch lines and 1/2-inch valves that use a combination of Slam Specialties 'bags in the front and Firestone at the rear of the truck. Although many lowering enthusiasts use the quickconnect,flexible air hose, Dennis decided to use leak-proof copper tubing. Although he is knowledgeable in lowering trucks, he had all of the suspension work done by Bill.

Ekstensive Metalworks not only buried the truck, but the crew added some modifications to improve its capability of being driven low. Because the truck sits on its frame, a custom gas tank was made, and the frame has some step notches in it to clear the rear axle. Since many airbagged trucks have a massive amount of negative camber when the vehicle is lowered, the upper control arms were lifted 4 inches higher on the frame so that most of the camber would be eliminated when the truck was brought down. Now, Dennis can drive the truck when it is only 2 inches off the ground, which means the truck has been lowered a total of 12 inches in front and 18 inches at the rear.

The Ram rides on a set of 22-inch wheels, wrapped by a set of 265/35R22 tires, with almost 7 inches of backspacing.Dennis can easily raise and lower the Ram with the flip of a switch or a push of a button on his alarm remote, but that's not the only thing that draws attention to this truck.The exterior paint scheme and lack of molding and emblems give Dennis' ride a cleaner appearance. The tailgate handle was shaved, and the roll pan was molded to the rear by Ekstensive Metalworks to further enhance the truck's sleek look. Also, an aluminum billet grille was added.

When it came down to painting the truck, Dennis wanted something subtle yet unique. He chose a red with a black stripe paint scheme. The paint scheme was further enhanced with candy red flames that were laid down over the black stripe. The bed is topped with an over-the-rail bedcover and painted to match the hood and roof. Underneath it, Dennis covered the step notch cover and wheeltubs with a spray-in bedliner.

Under the hood, the factory 5.9L V-8 uses a K&N air filter and a custommade intake tube. The exhaust is handled with a Flowmaster system that uses 3-1/2-inch-diameter tubing.

Inside the cab, black ostrich skin and copper, braided leather are used on the headliner and seats. Both have flames in them, and the center console incorporates custom billet inserts that are used on the door panels, as well. A set of billet pedals, billet dash knobs, and a billet steering wheel add some flash to the cab. Dennis also had to have a way to play his music loud, so he installed a new head unit with a flip-out screen. The unit plays CDs and MP3s, and it sends signals through 10 channels of amplification and runs an array of speakers.

Dennis calls his truck "D Menis," and although it has plenty of custom modifications to it, the fact that it is clean and simple is what draws many people to it. The truck also proves that it doesn't take lots of money to build a clean and custom truck. All it takes is patience, time, and the ability to finish what you have started.

The 411

Owner /Home Town:
Dennis Phillips / Meridian, Mississippi

Year /Make/Model:
'02 Dodge Ram 1500

Engine/Drivetrain:
5.9l Magnum V-8 / Five-Speed 545rfe Automatic Transmission / Cold-Air Intake /Flowmaster Exhaust / Two Optima Redtop Batteries / Relocated Computer, Cruise Control,Abs, And Fuse Box / Airaid Throttle-Body Spacer /Superchips Programmer
By: Dennis Phillips

Rims:
Front & Rear: Eagle Alloy 22x9-Inch Series 25

Tires:
Front & Rear: Kumho 265/35r22 Ecsta Stx

Suspension:
Front: Ekstensive Custom Lower Control Arms And 'Bag Mounts / Upper Control Arms Were Raised 4 Inches / Two Slam Specialties Re8 Air Springs / Two Toxic Shocks
Rear: Ekstensive Two-Link With Panhard Bar /Firestone 26c Air Springs / Two Toxic Shocks
Accessories: Thomas 3/4hp 100-Percent Duty Cycle Compressor / Air System, Hard Lined With 3/8-Inch Copper Tubing / Eight Gc Xtreme 450 1/2-Inch Valves / Aluminum 25-Gallon Fuel Cell / Baer Rotors
Chassis: Modified Front And Transmission Crossmembers / Step Notch
By: Ekstensive Metalworks, Of Houston

Body Mods:
Shaved Door And Tailgate Handles, Taillights,Antenna, Third Brake Light, And Gas Door / Jbm Upper And Lower Billet Grilles / Sir Michaels Roll Pan / Billet Specialties Billet Taillights / Xenon Fender Flares / Reflexxion Cowl-Induction Hood / Gaylord's Bedcover / Street Scene Side-View Mirrors
By: Dennis Phillips

Custom Paint:
House Of Kolor Cinder Red, House Of Kolor Black And Candy Red
By: Dennis Phillips

Interior:
Stock Seats Re-Covered With Black Ostrich Skin And Copper Braided Leather / Smoothed And Painted Inserts On Dash And Door Panels /Custom Center Console Fiberglassed And Painted Cinder Red / Billet Specialties Chicayne Steering Wheel, Pedals, And Miscellaneous Dash Knobs
By: Taylor's Upholstery Of Vossberg, Mississippi/ Dennis Phillips

Audio/Video:
Alpine Cva-1005 Head Unit / Two Alpine Mrv-450 Five-Channel Amplifiers / Four Sets Of Rockford Fosgate Components / One Jl Audio 10w1 10-Inch Subwoofer / Alpine 5205 Dvd Player, 5.1 Surround Sound, Xm Radio Receiver / Sound Stream 12-Inch Overhead Monitor /Clifford Alarm With Remote Start And Air Ride
By: Sean Norcross / Dennis Phillips

Club:
Relaxed Atmosphere

Special Thanks:
His "Wifey" And Daughter, His Dad, Sean Norcross, And Bill Carlton And The Crew At Ekstensive Metalworks

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