It's every custom truck enthusiast's ambition: to build a show/driver that will drop jaws and raise thumbs, whether cruisin' the boulevard or sittin' pretty at a show 'n' shine. Most owners build 'em to drive. Those who don't are missing half the fun of the hobby.
Jeff Jones, from Potcav, Oklahoma, builds show caliber rides to be driven. To his credit, he previously built a '97 Chevy Silverado Extended Cab, custom chopper two-wheeler, and a '57 Chevy Nomad. He is also a current member of the Goodguys Rod & Custom Association and Relaxed Atmosphere. Being the vice president of a family-owned trucking company has helped Jeff fuel his love of customizing.
When Jeff isn't behind his office desk or the wheel of a Kenworth haulin' a load, he's busy cruising and showing his unique '72 C10 X-tended Cab. When making a commitment to building a custom cruiser of this magnitude, time management plays an important part in maintaining the rest of your life. The hardest part of building a high-quality custom ride? Having the patience to stick with it. This blue cruiser was a two-year project.
Getting down to cutting and grinding, Jeff delivered his '72 C10 to a trio of brothers, Rusty, Jimmy, and Dusty Cox of Dusty's Collision in Pocola, Oklahoma. The bros disassembled the rough sheet metal, and the cab and suspension components from the frame and the rear frame rails were step notched to allow for ample negative suspension travel of the rear-end housing. The frame's unused holes were welded, ground smooth, and then painted.
The nose was dropped by installing a pair of Fat Man 2-inch drop spindles and a set of Chassis Engineering chromed upper and lower control arms. To eliminate body roll, a firmer Chassis Engineering sway bar, along with a pair of polished Aldan adjustable coil over shocks, allow for achieving proper ride height. The U-bolts securing the rear-end housing were unbolted and the rear end was then removed from its factory location and relocated above the leaf spring packs, creating an 8-inch drop in the rear. To guarantee improved stopping power, a set of four Wilwood 14-inch rotors, with dual piston calipers are linked with polished stainless steel brake lines. Rolling spools consist of 18X8-inch Budnik Fontana polished billet aluminum wheels wrapped in 245/40R18 Dunlop rubber up front; the 20X10-inch Fontana billets are encased with 295/40R20 Dunlop tires in the rear.
The grunt comes from a Street & Performance-built '85 GM 350ci engine. Street & Performance bored and honed the cast-iron block 0.030 over, then decked and squared it. The stock cylinder heads were machined and set up with new valves, springs, keepers, rockers, and valve seats. A mild Comp Cam bump stick was inserted with a couple of fists full of Comp Cam lifters and push rods. The fuel delivery system was upgraded to a Street Performance TPI (Tuned Port Injection) setup. An Accel electronic ignition supplies and distributes the high-energy spark. A pair of Headman headers are bolted up to the cylinder heads and their collectors merge into the stainless steel exhaust that leads into a pair of Flowmaster two-chamber muffs. The mighty Bow Tie horsepower is transmitted through a Turbo 350 transmission and continued to the Ford 9-inch rear end.