This article originally appeared in the June 2020 issue.
Check out this old gem! It’s among the generation of pickups that kicked off the long-running Cummins B-series engine option. You might say we’re definitely getting lucky now coming across some older diesels to feature, especially in the Power of Pink section.
A few months ago, we featured Samantha J. “Sammy” Ball of southern British Columbia and her 24-valve 5.9L Cummins. Now, meet Morgan Miller of Chilliwack, also in that region near the international border with Washington state.
Her truck, named Milltertime for her own namesake (and after the beer company slogan) is a 1993 Dodge W250 with the 12-valve VE-pumped 5.9L Cummins. No electronics on this beast! It’s an old truck, but boy does this regular cab silver Dodge with lots of chrome look nice for its age! Milltertime is also a five-speed manual, and those are becoming harder to come by these days in the U.S., especially considering now none of the Big Three truck lines offer a manual transmission option anymore (RAM was the last to discontinue them, dropping them for the 2019 model year).
Living The Diesel Life
The inspiration for setting foot in the diesel pickup life came from within Morgan’s family. “My brother had a bad-looking first-gen Cummins and made me want one for myself,” she says. Morgan bought the truck a couple years ago, and it had already undergone some minor body work; it was repainted with a new box and cab just before she purchased it, as the box caved in after one of the wheels fell off. “This truck is far from perfect, but perfect to me,” Morgan says.
She mostly uses her truck as her daily driver for her job where she sells vehicle, travel and home insurance, but also takes it out to shows, including show-n-shines, local vehicle meets and cruise-ins.
“I spend time at many truck events and adventures with my friends and they’re a lot of fun,” Morgan adds.
This build is on the more modest side to some extent, but it’s definitely performance-rich. However, she does use a Level Fab roll pan, custom headlights from Rugged Retrofits Customs, taillights built by Cole’s Auto Detailing, and grille inserts from Karriker Kustoms to give her truck some extra “don’t mess with me” personality on the outside. You know her truck means business when you see it.
On the engine, Morgan added Industrial Injection Prince of Darkness (POD) injectors and a lift pump, along with a Holset HX35 turbo, and she built up the engine’s VE injection pump. The injectors add a 50hp increase to the engine. The turbo, which comes stock on the 1993 engine’s newer 5.9L descendants, also adds a huge boost. Additionally, she added a governor spring to bump her RPM up to 3,600.
The simplicity of these performance upgrades is definitely hard to come by these days with electronics and emissions controls completely taking over the newer diesels. Topping off the engine side of performance are dual diamond-shaped 8-inch stacks built by her friend Brandon Van Dyk of Level Fabricators. Milltertime doesn’t have a lift kit, but it still looks like a beast with the wheels and tires it rides on, which are TIS 24-inch rims on 35-inch Fury Country Hunter M/T tires. The low-noise and continuous pattern tires make her truck a great off-road machine while also still being a stellar daily driver, and the truck does see some regular off-road use.
“When I take it off-road, I take it down to the river for bonfires,” she says.
Enhancing The Diesel Life
Milltertime is mostly a performance machine in terms of mods, but Morgan is definitely not done building it. She plans on getting into more significant style-based mods in the future. Although the truck looks sharp for its age as-is now, she plans on adding a custom two-tone paint scheme consisting of Burgundy and black, as well as an FFS front bumper. She even plans to do a fourth-gen RAM interior swap, so Milltertime does have yet to undergo a minor rebuild.
“In the two years I’ve owned this truck, it’s been by far the wildest ride,” Morgan says. “I’ve had many tow rides, wheel bearings, steering brackets, and transmission work. It hasn’t always been pleasant or cheap, but it’s my dream to finish this truck.”
Morgan definitely wouldn’t trade Milltertime for the world, as her ride has helped her become connected with some great people and companies in the aftermarket light diesel industry, and she’s grateful for all the companies she’s had the chance to work with.
“The thumbs up and interest people show in my truck make me feel like I’m not just blowing money on an old truck, that enough people still have an eye for an old square RAM,” she laughs. Don’t worry, even though the old diesels are harder to come by now, they’re still out there!
“I can’t wait to see what comes out of the future for my truck and where it’s headed,” Morgan says excitedly. Although it’s now a 27-year-old old truck, she’s definitely keeping it up well, so she has quite a bit of fun in store for the square body beast.
She has set foot in a male-dominated industry, but you should never let gender identity get in the way of your dreams. It’s all about your true passion within, which Morgan doesn’t lack at all.
LADIES, WANT TO SEE YOUR TRUCK FEATURED IN THE MAGAZINE? GO HERE!
Cole’s Auto Detailing