It’s Not What It Looks Like..
Trucks have certainly evolved over the last century. At first, they were simply built to offer more cargo room than cars, since they were pretty much just built on passenger car chassis. Once truck-specific chassis were made, they were able to carry heavier loads at the expense of a rougher ride. Once consumers had had enough of that, manufacturers figured out a way to not only increase cargo capacity, but also offer a decent ride.
Today, well—we simply want it all. We all have our own ideas of what makes the perfect truck, but for most of us, hauling stuff is no longer at the top of the list! Chris Chandler from Campbell, California, can certainly relate. His love of C10s runs deep, but the only thing Chris was interested in hauling was ass—and a few trophies, both on and off the track!
“It had been a dream to build a truck of show quality that was also built to autocross,” Chris says. “My goal was to design and construct something that would handle very well, brake very well, and have a linear powerband that would be responsive and easy to drive fast. A vehicle that would not only feel good and inspire confidence, but might surprise most exotic car owners, have modern comforts and be a reliable daily driver.”
Now, you might think that Chris had some pretty lofty goals, but perhaps some background on the guy might help. Although he is relatively new to custom trucks, Chris is definitely not new to making things go fast.
“I have been building vehicles for the last 30 years, both for work and for myself,” he says. “Most of my previous builds were BMWs or Chevrolets. I spent many years working for a BMW tuning company in California as the engineering manager, as crew chief of a racing team and as a prototype fabricator. I have also spent many years at the racetrack as a driver and as an instructor. This is part of the reason I wanted to make this truck handle well, both on the track and on the street.”
More specifically, Chris wanted to build a classic truck that would outperform his modified BMW M3. As you can imagine, achieving anything close to that would take an insane amount of work!
It would take Chris just 18 short months to build the truck, but that short timeframe was due, in large part, to the extensive planning he had done beforehand. When you’re an engineer, after all, blueprints are essential! And once he had his extensive list completed, parts ordered and tools wheeled out, he got to work.
“I started in September 2017 with the purchase of the No Limit Pro Tech chassis, but the truck was still being driven and was not taken apart until January 2018,” Chris says. “Over the next 18 months, all chassis and drivetrain parts were purchased, built and installed, and included the LS3 buildup. Also, the needed sheetmetal work was done, which included the firewall, cab floor and the bed floor.”
And while Chris’ quick rundown of his truck’s build process may seem fairly commonplace considering the abundance of off-the-shelf parts available for C10s nowadays, the actual, fleshed-out truck is anything but. There are a lot of subtle mods that you just won’t see on any other C10, such as the custom steel bed floor and killer fabbed fuel filler setup. In fact, if you want the real skinny on the truck, you’re probably better off checking out the tech specs since the list of mods is a mile long!
Chris was finally able to drive the truck in July 2019 after making some last-minute prep for the Good Guys Hall of Fame Tour that September. Since then, he has been methodically refining it to perfection and has even decided to make some changes. For instance, the shaved doors will be modified to accept flush-mounted handles, and Chris will be shedding some of the front end’s weight and adding front-end autodynamics devices to improve performance on the track.
With any luck, Chris will be back on the track in 2021, badder and even faster than before!
1971 Chevy C10
No Limit Engineering Pro-Tech chassis
- Hidden custom trailer hitch
- Ridetech coilover shocks with Viking springs
- Speedway 1.25-inch and 0.75-inch solid sway bars
- Ford 9-inch rear end with 4.11:1 gears and Trac-Lok limited slip differential
- Z06 Corvette brakes front and rear
- Jamar front and rear master cylinders
- Custom pedals with balance bar from Square One Vintage
- 19×10 and 19×12 Forgeline GA3 forged aluminum wheels
- 295/35ZR19 and 345/30ZR19 Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires
- GM 6.2L LS3 engine
- Custom ground LSM camshaft, 236/248 dur., .612 lift
- Smith Bros. pushrods and trunnion kit
- PSI valve springs with Brian Tooley Titanium retainers
- Ultimate headers
- 3-inch custom side-exit exhaust
- Improved Racing scraper/windage tray
- C&R aluminum radiator
- Holley oil pan and baffle kit
- Drive Junky belt drive system
- Custom cold air intake
- Tremec T-56 Magnum manual transmission
- Custom close-ratio gearset
- Bowler mid-mount short shifter
- Ram twin disc clutch
- 4-inch Inland Empire Driveline Service aluminum driveshaft
- Front roll pan
- Front air dam
- Smoothed and re-chromed rear bumper
- Custom bed floor
- Widened factory rear wheel wells
- Shaved stake pockets
- Shaved marker lights
- Shaved fuel door
- Custom fuel filler setup in bed
- Shaved door handles
- Painted black and white by Alex Rangel at The Great Auto Paint Shop
- LED headlights and taillights
- OEM bucket seats, upholstered by John Wardell Auto Interiors
- Seat heaters
- Three-point seat belts
- Momo Heritage California steering wheel
- Custom carpet
- Custom LED interior lighting
- Vintage Air Gen IV SureFit A/C system
- RetroSound Long Beach head unit
- Hertz component speakers
- Custom subwoofer enclosure
- Auxiliary USB ports