To make those rear tires nice and smoky, a '93 Chevy LT-1 350ci engine was delivered to Marv Grogan at Thunder Works in Victorville, California, where it underwent disassembly, cleaning, machining, and reassembly. Marv transformed the LT-1 350 into a 383 stroker by boring the engine block cylinders .030 over to 4.030 with a 3.750 stroke. A set of JE SRE pistons were fitted with Clevite bearings and Hastings Power Flex rings. The JE pistons were then pinned to a set of GM 5.7L connecting rods. A mild Comp Cams Extreme Energy camshaft with 269 int/276 exh lift duration was carefully inserted into the camshaft bores. A pair of lighter GM Performance Parts LT-4 aluminum cylinder heads were assembled with 2.00 intake/1.55 exhaust valves and Isky springs/keepers. Street & Performance ceramic-coated 17/8-inch headers draw the exhaust from the cylinder head exhaust ports into a 21/2-inch exhaust system that flow into a pair of Flowmaster dual-chamber mufflers. The engine is backed up to a '93 GM 4L60E automatic transmission. The 4L60E transmission and rearend are linked by an Inland Driveline driveshaft. This much power sends Dean back into his seat with an ear-to-ear grin. To make the engine bay look as sanitary as possible, each part was meticulously detailed. A high-horsepower engine in a beat-up truck is never a good combination, so Dean set out to make his truck look as good as it ran.
Dean was determined to keep the sheetmetal all vintage '56, no aftermarket re-popped skin here. Parts and pieces were scavenged, mixed, and matched as the cab, doors, fenders, hood, grille, headlight bezels, bumper, bed, and tailgate were constructed. The original rear steel bed and tailgate were mated with a pair of Brothers' fiberglass smooth steps and rear fenders, which measured three inches wider than original. The bed's white wooden ash floor planks were sanded, then given multi coats of urethane stain that took Dean two weeks to perfect. The bed floor stringers and carriage bolts were sent out to Artistic Silver Plating in Signal Hill, California, where they were brushed chrome to match the other exterior accessories. The bed floor was raised two inches to accommodate the modified stepped rear framerails. A custom rear roll pan was fabricated with a license plate cove flanked by four '62 Corvette taillights and bezels. After purchasing three grilles, Dean pieced together one perfect grille. The grille, headlight bezels, front bumper and door handles, were delivered to Artistic Silver Plating where they received a sano brushed chrome treatment. The headlight bezels were filled with OEM T3 headlights to keep the original appearance. A Brothers' tilt-forward hood kit was installed to the OEM hood allowing easy access to the mighty mouse powerplant. The factory side window wing vents were refurbished and installed with new weatherstripping.