1972 Chevy C10 Cheyene NAMED TOO BUSY, WHEN BUSINESS FINALLY MEETS PLEASURE!
Building custom trucks for a living sounds like an absolute dream, right? Who wouldn’t want to turn their favorite hobby into a business? Well, for those who have done it in the past or are currently neck deep in the reality of the situation, the general consensus might warn possible onlookers to “be careful of what you wish for.” While working on trucks every day can start to feel like more of a job than a pleasurable escape from work at times, the lucky souls who get to dirty their hands on the daily still wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now, the big changeup that comes with turning trucks into a career is the time (rather, the lack thereof) spent with one’s own personal truck.
When paying gigs take priority, finding the time to do literally anything else but work really can take a toll on the progress of building a side project. While that is just the turf that accompanies the job, it doesn’t always have to be like that. It does take valiant effort to carve out hours for personal play, but the key to doing so may require some reinventing of the process as a legit business opportunity instead of just an ordinary wrenching session.
To get an insider’s perspective on this particular work scenario, we reached out to Shane Williams of All American Billet to get his take on balancing the tightrope between work and play.
“I had been already been working on this ’72 C10 when we purchased RM Garrison Machining in 2013,” he says. “I had the intention of always doing something in the automotive industry, and after taking over the machine shop, All American Billet was soon founded.”
While the first few years were too busy to get any work done on his truck, Shane hadn’t stopped mapping out the next steps of its progress.
While working on trucks every day can start to feel like more of a job than a pleasurable escape from work at times, the lucky souls who get to dirty their hands on the daily still wouldn’t have it any other way.
“As the truck sat idle, we concentrated all our time to product development and growing our new brand,” Shane admits. “I actually started calling the truck ‘Too Busy’ since that’s exactly why I hadn’t touched it in so long.”
While it was nice to have the truck sitting around, it was soon being used to supply other ongoing projects with parts. On the flip side, Shane’s trucks did serve a purpose on the R&D side, so they weren’t just sitting parked in vain.
“We did pull the motor for another truck that we still own, which has the very first front drive kit we designed installed on it,” he says.
As Shane and company started cranking out a wider variety of All American Billet branded parts, the need to examine and test fit them all became more of a pressing issue. This ultimately led to the legitimizing of finally dusting off the ’72 in hopes to build it by the book—rather, the AAB catalog.
“When we began making suspension components, we had removed the truck’s original crossmember and found a bent and torn frame,” Shane says. “To move forward, we decided to just start with another frame. We got to this point, the floodgate had been opened. Ended up going crazy on the build. There isn’t a nut or bolt that hasn’t been touched at this point.”
A donor ’70 chassis was treated to All American Billet’s own front drop member package featuring billet control arms and trailing arms, and outfitted with Aldan American coilovers for ultimate drivability. Mustang II power rack-and-pinion steering was also incorporated to allow the truck to handle as smooth as possible. To get the new chassis rolling, Shane aimed to keep a nostalgic vibe going and opted for a set of Detroit Steel’s Delray wheels in a subtle, staggered 18/20-inch setup.
Just like that, Shane’s once neglected C10 was finally getting the attention it deserved. Actually, the completed chassis was unveiled at SEMA ’17, and the plan was to return to the show the following year with the rest of the truck finished up.
To get the exterior of the truck up to speed, Shane reached out to Spencer’s Rods and Restorations in Glendale, Arizona, to handle the body and paintwork. The bed floor was built to raise, and the panel was fabricated to enable access to the Tre5 Customs fuel cell and rear suspension components. After some necessary straightening out of body panels was completed, the paint phase could then be laid out. Martin Senour Blue Flame Metallic and White were selected as the hues of choice to create a vintage inspired two-tone visual aesthetic. Naturally, All American Billet parts were peppered throughout the exterior overhaul in the form of side markers, taillight bezels, billet hood hinges and custom emblems. With a much larger variety of fresh parts available, Shane and crew were able to show off new and exciting product at almost every corner of the Chevy C10 truck.
Moving into the cab, All American Billet door and window cranks were utilized, as well as a one-off steering wheel that was crafted in-house. TMI Products bucket seats, door panels and dash pad were introduced to the interior space. Leather and hound’s tooth upholstery that added to the truck’s established throwback styling. Dakota Digital gauges update the dash in modern yet familiar fashion, which is always a welcomed addition to a truck of any age.
Since the truck still needed an engine, a Chevy 468ci big-block was incorporated into the project. An All American Billet front drive kit was thrown in, as well as a Vortech Supercharger, Fitech Fuel Injection, Trick Flow aluminum heads, an Edlebrock Performer RMP air gap intake, and custom headers and exhaust. The C10 was given a solid, all-around dose of power that has proven to pair well with the freshly upgraded chassis setup.
The truck Chevy C10 was, in fact, wrapped up and bolted together to make Shane’s SEMA ’18 deadline. Luckily, time was good to him leading up to the C10’s completion. The project picked up steam and made up for all the lost years as soon as a fire was lit beneath it. When pressed to comment on the outcome of the truck. Shane pleasantly reported that the truck has not only met but exceeded all expectations. The only snag in the road that he could comment on really has to do with financing. That’s always an issue when building a truck of this caliber.
“We designed the truck to intentionally defy current trends,” he says. “We went with a longbed versus a shortbed, and ran with a big-block instead of an LS. While in theory, While in theory we thought there would’ve been a noticeable difference in funds spent. For the money actually spent, maybe we should’ve just gone with what’s trending.”
Either way, the Chevy C10 project is a huge success, and folks can see firsthand. All American Billet products will jibe with their own builds at home—and that was the most important objective of all.
All American Billet
’72 Chevy C10 Cheyene
- Shop: All American Billet ’70 Chevy C10 frame
- All American Billet front drop member
- Billet control arms and trailing arms
- Aldan American coilovers
- Mustang II power rack-and-pinion
- Chevrolet 4L80E transmission built by Hughes Performance
- U.S. Shift Quick 4 shift kit
- Dutchman Axles Ford 9-inch rearend
- Wilwood brakes and master cylinder
Wheels And Tires
- 18×8 and 20×11 Detroit Steel Wheels Delray wheels
- 245/48/18 and 305/40/20 Michelin tires
- Shop: All American Billet
- Chevy 468ci big-block
- Trick Flow aluminum heads
- Edelbrock Performer RPM Air Gap intake manifold
- Fitech fuel injection
- Ultimate Headers
- Flowmaster muffler
- MSD Digital 6A ignition
- Vortech supercharger
- All American Billet front drive kit and hood hinges
- Ron Davis Racing radiator
- Additional engine parts from Summit Racing
- Red Line engine oil
- Painless wiring harness
- Shop: Spencer’s Rods and Restorations, Glendale, AZ
- Martin Senour Blue Flam Metallic and White paint
- LMC Trucks grille and stock painted bumpers
- Bed floor raises to access Tre5 Customs fuel cell
- All American Billet side markers, taillight bezels and custom decals
- Dapper Lighting headlights
- Mar-K wood floor kit
- TMI Products bucket seats, dash pad and door panels
- Leather, black and white hounds tooth upholstery
- All American Billet one-off steering wheel, door and window cranks
- Dakota Digital HDX instrumentation
- Pioneer audio products
- Vintage Air A/C system