Ed Cottrell's curiosity and infatuation with pickup trucks began when he was knee high to the bumper of his dad's '57 Chevy pickup. The two put thousands of miles on the ol' hauler with little Eddie riding shotgun during his younger years. That was some 40 years ago. During the past 35 years he has been an avid drag and road racer, and most recently, a custom truck enthusiast.

In high school Ed purchased an old '67 Corvette ex-drag car with the factory big-block. After a couple of years of prowling the boulevards, with the occasional street race, it was retired after a rod let go, punching a hole in the side of the block. It was yanked with intentions of dropping in a small-block. It was parked behind the family barn, where it sat under a tarp for 25 years.

While thumbing through a local truck trader rag, Ed discovered a rust bucket and took ownership for five Franklins. A three-year journey of building began with intentions of creating a cool daily driver, which seems to be the initial intent of many custom truck enthusiasts. After investing endless hours and money into the project, it easily snowballed into a serious show custom.

The original straight-axle leaf-spring front suspension of the rusted hunk of metal was severed from the frame with a cutting torch. A '70s Camaro front clip was then squared and grafted to the original frame rails. Ed delivered the modified frame to the sand blaster where decades of rust was removed, exposing the frame's virgin metal surface. The frame rails were then boxed using 3/16-inch steel plate to increase the frame's strength and rigidity. New engine mounts, suspension pickup points (front and rear), and brackets were welded in place. The frame then received multiple coats of PPG body-color blue.

To obtain the lowered static ride height, Ed Z-notched the front clip. Using stock Camaro spindles and Corvette disc brakes the truck now stops like it should. A pair of Gabriel front shock absorbers and Eaton coil springs control the front end's action. American Racing Torque Thrust II 17x7-inch billet aluminum wheels are wrapped in BFGoodrich 235/45R17 rubber. The rear frame rails were C-notched to allow for the negative suspension travel of the '90 Corvette C4 IRS transverse-leaf rear suspension. A pair of Gabriel shocks controls the rear end's vertical oscillation. It's spinning a pair of American Racing Torque Thrust II 17X11-inch billet aluminum wheels capped with BFGoodrich 305/45R17 tires.

After retrieving his machined 383ci block from Indy Cylinder Heads in Indianapolis, Ed borrowed his close friend Dave Fisher's immaculate garage to assemble the 383ci stroker power plant. An Eagle 3.75 stroker crankshaft is the rotating pivot point of power that is linked to the Keith Black pistons and Speed-Pro rings by reconditioned factory connecting rods. A pair of World Product 202 S/R Torker cylinder heads deliver the correct fuel/air mixture to each of the eight combustion chambers. A Comp Cams bump stick (with 260 duration at 110-degree lobe separation angle, with 0.450 lift) was inserted into the cam bearings. A set of Comp Cam lifters and push rods transfer the rotating inertia into coordinating the valve train action.

The TPI (tuned port injection) system was borrowed from an '86 Camaro to deliver the correct fuel/air mixture. A factory GM electronic ignition system produces ample spark through the MSD 9mm ignition wires carrying charged energy to the eight spark plugs and combustion chambers. A pair of DynoMax 1-5/8-inch headers with Jet Hot coating flow into 2-1/2-inch DynoMax exhaust tubing and mufflers. The GM 700-R4 automatic transmission was improved by installing a B&M shift kit with high performance bands, clutch packs, and a Corvette servo.