Anyone who has ever been to Texas and is a custom truck enthusiast knows that low-slung late-model iron tucking big wheels and sporting elaborate paint schemes is a common sight in certain areas of the Lone Star state. Every year the staff of Truckin' makes the annual trek to Austin in the scorching month of July to cover one of the largest custom truck events in existence. The Texas Heat Wave Custom Truck Show never ceases to amaze this staff with the amount of wicked rides in attendance. This year, our cameras were given a workout snapping images of brightly colored, pavement-hammering haulers, but one particular pickup grabbed our attention the minute we rolled into the gates. Louie Galicia of Houston was on hand with his first custom pickup and it was simply too insanely nice not to schedule for a photo shoot that weekend. We successfully got Louie away from Bullet Customs' display booth to bring out his '01 Ford SuperCrew to our feature shooting area to document all of its flamed, frame-laying coolness on film. Louie says that when the SuperCrew was purchased in September of 2000, it was originally intended for his wife Brenda as a daily driver, but once he saw all the possibilities for customizing, he snagged the keys and started creating this rolling work of art.

First on the list for this low-down F-series stuffing 22s was a trip to Xtreem Rydes in Houston, where the suspension was sliced and diced to accommodate 22-inch rims and rubber. No cookie-cutter bolt-on drop was going to do on this ride. Like many of his custom truck colleagues, Louie wanted to be riding on air. The folks at Xtreem Rydes fit the SuperCrew with Firestone 224C 2,600-pound airbags front and rear and plumbed the bellows with 3/8-inch copper air lines and 3/8-inch Herion valves. One 7-gallon reserve air storage tank is on board along with a compressed air tank for quick lifting and lowering. A Thomas Superduty compressor fits the bill when it comes time to replenish air supply. Enabling the 22-inch rims and rubber to tuck so deeply out back is a 7-inch step notch in the rear framerails executed by Xtreem Rydes. After the suspension alterations were complete and the truck's adjustability was tailored to Louie's taste, a set of Boyd Coddington 22x10-inch Nemesis wheels clad in Pirelli Scorpion Zero tires measuring P295/30ZR22 were mounted up to the sizzling Ford's front and rear suspension.

Twisting those 22-inch rollers with a little more power was Louie's next order of custom business, so a few performance and detail components were assembled and tossed into the mix. When Louie ordered the SuperCrew, he made sure to get the larger 5.4L powerplant, but a few performance additions on any custom truck never hurt, so a cold-air intake from Ractive and a MagnaFlow exhaust were teamed together for a few extra ponies. With regard to detail, miscellaneous billet components sprinkled throughout the compartment help the cause. Completion of the suspension and drivetrain lead Louie to exploring what modifications to execute on the truck's exterior. The body of any given hauler is its owners area to express his or her individual customizing style preferences, so Louie dropped the truck off at Anthony's Body Shop in Houston for metal smoothing.

First off, an '01 Lincoln Navigator front clip was located and fitted to the nose of the SuperCrew for a distinctive facelift. As for body modifications, the metal masters at Anthony's shaved the door handles, emblems, taillights, and tailgate handle. The tailgate was fitted with a Navigator license plate box, while the bed caps were smoothed and a custom-molded roll pan was fitted to the rear. Flexible L.E.D. strip taillights were mounted where the stock taillights used to rest, warning close followers of sudden stops. A Street Scene ground effects kit and Gaylord tonneau cover round out the body alterations. Anthony's Body Shop finished the metal modifications in perfect arrow-straight style, and the truck was delivered to Pat Maxwell at Maxwell Designs in Houston to receive the extra-hot paint scheme seen here.

Now that Pat had a smooth and straight metal canvas to work with, he got busy spraying the '01 Plymouth Prowler Orange base paint to prepare the backdrop for the intense flame job. This aggressive yet unique color provided a perfect background for the custom-mixed House of Kolor Lime Green Pearl tribal flames. Pat laid out these hot licks to engulf the whole nose and most of the side of the truck. After Max executed the look Louie was going for, it was time to wrap up the project with audio upgrades and upholstery tricks.

Louie made sure to pack the inside of this SuperCrew with plenty of audio punch for cruising to shows far and wide. Up front, a Pioneer DEH P840MP head unit delivers musical selections, while a Clarion Equalizer evens out the sound. A Bazooka four-channel amp delivers power to the mids and highs along with another one-channel 100-watt amp which handles powering the subwoofers. For bass, Louie relies on four 10-inch Bazooka subwoofers enclosed in a box hand made by his dad, Cruz Galicia. The doors play home to 6x8-inch Bazooka speakers, while a Pro Vision PlayStation 2 DVD system keeps Louie's children busy on long trips. Lino at Bullet Customs is responsible for wiring up this massive audio ensemble. As for the interior, a wrecked Harley-Davidson F-150 SuperCrew was located and Louie obtained the remaining innards for Super Gator. The factory interior is very impressive with black and gray leather blended together for a rich look. A Trenz steering wheel, billet shift and tilt levers, and a flame mirror lend additional inside detail.

This spectacular Blue Oval hauler was finished just days before this year's Texas Heat Wave Show. Louie would like to thank his dad Cruz, wife Brenda, and his two children Marissa and Louie Jr. for their help and support during the buildup. Special thanks also go out to Lino at Bullet Customs, Bill at Ektensive Metal Works, all customers of Bullet Customs, and friends Ray and Joe for all their great ideas. Unfortunately, while on the phone with Louie recently to ask a few questions about the truck, we learned he had been broadsided one day and one whole side of the truck was wiped out. An insurance settlement check is paying for the damages, and Louie promises to be back out next year with a totally different look. It is definitely going to be hard to top what you see here.