We purchase trucks in a variety of ways. Sometimes we buy them off Craigslist, other times we see them sitting on the side of the road, or maybe we trade one truck for another. Steve Richey of Royse City, Texas, did just that. He had a ’57 Chevy and his dad, Jim Richey, had a ’68 longbed. After mulling it over, Steve asked his Dad if they could trade and Steve could build the ’68 the way he and his dad always wanted to. Jim agreed and Steve had himself a new project.
The truck started out as a longbed, so the first thing Steve did was remove the bed and chop off the rear section of the frame. With a clean slate to work with, Steve built new, narrower framerails with a nice notch in them because he knew he wanted it to sit low. Steve then had the frame painted black. Under the notch in the rear, a Ford 9-inch rearend was bolted up with a ladder-bar setup and coilovers. Up front, CPP drop spindles and Monroe shocks were used as well as Ridetech Shockwaves for adjustability. For better stopping power, CPP disc brakes were installed on the corners. Finally, Billet Specialties Legacy wheels in size 18x8 and 20x17 were wrapped with Mickey Thompson Sportsman tires.
Moving to the body, Steve wanted to try something different. After completing the bed shortening, Steve shaved the door handles, along with the factory trim, gas door, stake bed pockets, and front bumper. He then prepped the body and had it sprayed PPG Black by Greg McSwain. Instead of leaving the sides of the truck barren, Steve had Pat Maxwell airbrush chrome trim and emblems onto the sides. The final result looked killer and really set the truck apart.
Moving inside the cab, Steve enlisted the help of Kyle Hix of Hix Design in Norman, Oklahoma. To start, the factory bench was cut down 1½ inches and covered in lipstick red Ultraleather. The old carpet was discarded in favor of a red replacement. Steve swapped out the steering wheel with one from Billet Specialties and the carbon-fiber gauges are custom-made Dakota Digital pieces in the factory trim. The headliner was also wrapped in matching lipstick red Ultraleather. The final thing Steve had left was the engine. It started with a 350ci block. On top of that, ported and polished aluminum heads were installed, along with an Edelbrock carb and Sanderson headers. For crisp shifts, Steve added a 2,000-stall convertor to a 700-R4 and called it a day. This sends the power to the Ford 9-inch with a Richmond mini-spool. Shortened Moser 31 spline axles finish off the rearend.
This truck is the perfect example of what you can do if you set your heart to it. Not every truck is built in a shop, there are still trucks out there being built by owners in garages. We applaud Steve’s hard work and dedication to the sport. He wanted to send special thanks to Greg and Billy McSwain for their help with the paint, Dakota Digital for building the custom carbon-fiber gauges, and most of all, his wife, Tammy, for supporting him throughout the build.
Pat Maxwell killed it with the airbrushed logos and trim.
There is no better choice than lipstick red for the interior of a black truck.
The Dakota Digital gauges feature actual carbon fiber with red accents.
Inside the Build
Year Make Model:
1968 Chevrolet C10
Owner and City/State:
Steve Richey • Royse City, Texas
Type: 350ci V-8
Heads: Aluminum angle plug
Induction: Edelbrock intake
Exhaust: Sanderson ceramic-coated block hugger headers, 3-inch exhaust
Fuel System: Edelbrock carb
Output: 400 hp and 475 lb-ft
Built by: Billy McSwain
Transmission: 700-R4 with 2,000-stall converter
Rearend: Ford 9-inch with Richmond mini-spool and Moser axles
Front suspension: CPP spindles, Monroe shocks, RideTech ShockWaves
Rear suspension: Ladder bar, Monroe coilovers
Brakes: CPP disc brakes
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: Billet Specialties Legacy 18x8-inch and 20x17-inch
Tires: Mickey Thompson SSR 26x10R18 and 31x18.50R20