Take a good look at this truck. Go on, do it. Yes, this 1969 Chevy truck is downright gorgeous on an obvious “eye candy” level, but more importantly, it’s a physical representation of what years’ worth of hard work, dedication and staying true to one’s own style can will into existence. Now, that’s the epitome of having enviable beauty both inside and out.
After a few years, we finally got on our feet, and my son and I decided in 2021, the 10th anniversary of our business, that it was finally time to build ourselves another dream vehicle…
This C10 is the product of father/son duo Hector Quintanilla and Hector Jr. of McFarland, California. The Quintanilla family moved to the central California area from Texas in 2011, but before they made the trek to the West Coast, Hector Sr. was in a serious auto accident that resulted in his custom ’65 Impala lowrider becoming a total loss. As bad of a situation that it was, it helped propel the entire family through to the much better times that were ahead.
Instead of taking that money and blowing it on another car right away, Hector combined whatever the insurance paid out for his Impala along with everything he had in his savings and invested all of it into his family.
“We started a family business when we arrived in California,” Hector says. “After a few years, we finally got on our feet, and my son and I decided in 2021, the 10th anniversary of our business, that it was finally time to build ourselves another dream vehicle to replace the Impala we had lost.”
The C10 platform proved to be an ideal one for the Quintanillas to use to break down and make their own. And to keep the ’69 they had sourced built as organically as possible, they relied heavily on the local central California talent pool to help create one hell of a classic Chevy pickup.
While Hector and Hector Jr. were intrigued in building a truck that represented their own style, they did have a larger goal they planned on reaching at the same time—to debut their C10 at SEMA ’21 (and to possibly make the cover of a major truck publication in the process).
They knew they could accomplish what they set out to do if they made all the right moves, and the first step in their plan was to have the suspension dialed in to get the truck sitting at an all-time low. To assist in the Chevy’s altitude adjustment, Vinny’s Metal Fab in Porterville, California, signed on to not only ‘bag the C10, but to perform a bodydrop to maximize its decrease in stature.
To better complement the C10’s new stance, Hector and his son began their search for the perfect wheel design and size. Naturally, the guys were looking to go big, and the set they landed on was a staggered fitment of front 24×9 and a whopping rear 26×16 Dropstars B21 billet wheels. These aren’t modest chunks of metal by any means, and they knew there would have to be a lot of careful fabrication to clear the space needed to allow the truck and wheels to cohabitate peacefully. Luckily, that issue would soon be addressed and all potential problems would be alleviated.
Under the Hood
Choosing the right powerplant to fit underneath the hood was one of the major hurdles that presented itself during the build phase. It can be easy to reach for a crate engine, namely an LS, given the huge amount of support from the aftermarket, which Hector was surely tempted by.
“My only reservation about moving away from an LS would be going against the grain of what has become the norm these days,” he admits.
Instead, the guys decided to keep the engine selection “old school,” as they relied on a 350ci implant to get the job done. Bakersfield, California, native, Kirk Gann, better known to some as “K Daddy,” played a big role in getting the engine well dressed and ready to rock. The Chevy small-block was outfitted with tried and true performance upgrades that would ensure it would run smoothly and efficiently for the long haul.
Time for Paint
If you recognize the K Daddy name and associate it more with Kirk’s talents in the body and paint game, you’ll get a kick at the next phases in the build process. Kirk has owned and operated K Daddyz Kustoms for quite a long time now and has since achieved much-earned legend status amongst mini-truck, motorcycle and lowrider circles—not to mention within just about any custom street vehicle genre as well. The Quintanillas wanted a paint scheme that was loud and had an undeniably cool old school aesthetic, and Kirk was the best source to deliver all of that and more.
Before any paint could be sprayed, however, the C10’s exterior had to first be prepped correctly, and to do his part on sculpting the metal just right, Chris McCombs of Rough Cut Customs worked his metal magic on the bed, including fabricating a set of motorcycle-style rear fender flares. The center of the bed was cut and left exposed to showcase the workings of the rear back half, as well as to flex just how girthy the rear meats really are.
From there, the rest of the bodywork and panel alignment was handled at the K Daddyz headquarters, and in no time at all, Kirk was finally able to bless the C10’s surface with one of his signature ’90s SoCal style paintjobs—it doesn’t get much more iconic than this in the custom truck scene!
With as much noise this truck made at its fateful unveiling at SEMA ’21, Hector Sr. made it a point to reflect on the things he learned from the experience he was able to share with his son and family, as well as so much local talent of his hometown.
“I’ve learned to truly value the importance of patience with a project like this,” he says. “More importantly though, it’s also important to build the kind of vehicle that is in your mind, no matter what others might think of it. It is OK to be different. Also, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my wife Jasmine for all her support, and to everybody involved in making this dream of ours a reality—thank you.”
- McFarland, CA
- 1969 Chevy C10
- Shop: Kirk Gann @ K-Daddyz Kustoms, Bakersfield, CA
- 1999 Chevy 5.7L V-8
- March Performance billet pulley kit
- Edelbrock 650 carb
- Holley headers
- Flowmaster exhaust
- Electric fans
- Painless Performance wiring
- Shop: Vinny’s Metal Fab, Porterville, CA
- 2006 Chevy chassis
- Cantilever frame setup
- Slam Specialties SS7 ‘bags
- Full Throttle shocks
- Viair 485C Compressors
- AVS manifold seamless air tank, switch box
- Dual Optima batteries
- Aluminum fuel cell
- Dutchman axles
- Rearend shortened to fit 26×16-inch wheels
Wheels, Tires & Brakes
- 24×9 and 26×16 Dropstars billet wheels
- Carrera 405 Series tires
- 2006 Chevy Silverado brakes
- Bodywork and alignment by Kyne Gann @ K-Daddyz Kustoms
- Airbrushing by Skip Sanchez, pinstriping by Corey Raybon, Bakersfield, CA
- Original grille
- Summit Racing bumpers
- Custom motorcycle style back fender flares
- Complete metalwork on bed, including fender flares all custom by Chris McCombs @ Rough Cut Customs
- Aquiles Auto Upholstery, Bakersfield, CA
- Leather wrapped bench seat
- Dropstar billet steering wheel
- Various stereo system upgrades