Some guys have all the perks. For example, take Shawn Gibson of Gibson Performance. When it was time to build a vehicle to showcase some of the company's latest and greatest products, Shawn was assigned to create a rolling billboard that would snag the attention of any and everyone exposed to it. Enter a 2004 Hummer H2, which is already an attention-snagger, but as with previous customs Shawn has built, stock wasn't an option and he was tired of seeing the typical lifted H2. What's so special about a Hummer with a bed on the back? Nothing, except in 2004 Hummer didn't make the SUT yet and Shawn's rig had a 5-1/2-foot bed on the back a year before Hummer released its own version, which is a full foot shorter. Different? Yes.
Starting with the original Hummer H2 SUV, Shawn delivered the truck to Ultra Limo in Woodland, California, to convert the SUV into a truck. It was a tall task to request, and after several months of intense cutting, welding, and reshaping, the 5-1/2-foot truck bed was seamlessly transplanted onto the H2. Twenty extra inches in front of the rear axle and 14 inches behind the axle account for the stretch job and make onlookers do a double take. Custom touches include a vertically opening rear window, full sheetmetal bed finished and smoothed by Marcel Venable of Line-X in Huntington Beach, California, and a trick rear bumper. Satisfied with the awesome bodywork and frame-stretching, Shawn drove the truck over to ST Trucks in Riverside, California.
While in the capable hands of ST Trucks the discussions of building a suspension that could take the abuse Shawn planned on dealing its way included a mild lift, a strong lift, and finally, a huge lift that was overbuilt to survive any and all abuse. On went Fabtech lift spindles with upper and lower Uniballs, a heavily gusseted drop-down bracket, Eibach race springs, and 16-inch triple bypass Sway-A-Way shocks. Combine this with chromoly axles, Heim center-link steering, and a huge sway bar, and this Hummer is ready and willing to jump, bounce, and fly. ST Trucks also went the extra step and boxed the entire frame, and even the front A-arms are prepped for extra abuse. Each piece of the suspension puzzle was powdercoated or dipped in chrome by Endless Powdercoating. Out back, the crew at ST Trucks built a trick cantilever four-link setup using huge link bars, Eibach coils, and 10-inch Sway-A-Way triple bypass shocks. Thanks to this combination of race-truck technology Shawn's H2 is capable of 19 inches of travel in the front and 20 inches of travel in the rear. Cushioning the landings from Shawn's extracurricular activities are 21/44-20LT Interco tires, properly mounted in 20x10-inch Ultra Baja Champ polished wheels.
Knowing that he had something special on his hands, Shawn stepped up and finished the interior with excellence to match the killer body. Besides having the dash painted candy red, Shawn also had 714 Motorsports cover the seats in black leather with red suede and ostrich inserts. Creating flowing flames with the trick stitching, the headliner was also treated to the black and red treatment. While at 714 Motorsports, a new audio/video system was installed incorporating Alpine and Audiobahn products. An in-dash Alpine unit sends audio signals to two Audiobahn amps powering two 12-inch Audiobahn subs behind the seat and components in the stock locations. The Alpine head unit also sends video signals to two 6-1/2-inch monitors in the front headrests, providing plenty of entertainment for lucky passengers.
Openly admitting it took him two long years to build the truck, a smile of relief comes over Shawn's face as he says: "Thank God it's finished." We've all been there and can relate to the elation of finishing a sick custom truck. Difference is, after the show where he takes "Best of Show," Shawn drives to the dunes and beats on the truck jump after jump. Some guys have all the perks.