Building a Dream, One Brick at a Time
For most people on the planet, cementing a place in history comes in different forms. Some define their legacy in sports or movies, some with heroism and accolades, but a select few leave their mark by good old’ fashioned hard work. Using your hands to build foundations for government buildings or create homes and barriers to protect others comes with a satisfaction most of us will never experience. Then you meet guys like Rich Gentner, Jr., from Georgetown, Delaware, a mason contractor with a meticulous mind and a hard-working mentality. The owner of this family-run company takes pride in every brick he and his crew lay, and the structures they build will be there forever. That’s how you leave your mark in history!
A lifetime of attention to detail is sure to carry over to all aspects of life. In this case, Rich is just like you and me—addicted to cool trucks that function as good as they look. Having always wanted a bagged full-size truck, Rich headed out to the local Chevrolet dealership in 2012 and picked up a sweet new Chevy Silverado Crew Cab 1500. He bagged it right when he got it and eventually stock-floor body dropped it a year later. The truck performed perfectly, and Rich enjoyed it for many years until one fateful trip on his way home from the Carlisle Truck Nationals in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The sound of an axle snapping can ruin a road trip really quick and set you back a few days repairing it. Luckily Rich already had some plans in his head for the next major modification, and this gave him the motivation to get started.
The goal was to transform this truck from a shortbed Chevy Crew Cab 1500 into a dually rear axle longbed. The research was already done so it was easy to order all the right parts. First off, a 167.7-inch wheelbase full plate chassis with integrated gooseneck hitch was fabricated by IRB Kustoms in Georgetown, Delaware. Air Lift 2600-pound air bags raise and lower the frontend while Firestone double-bellow bags lift the rear. A complete AccuAir E-level air management system was installed, and a set of custom wheel tubs and inner fenders keep it all clean. Under the newly painted dually bed is a GM 14-bolt limited slip rear dually axle with a 4:10 gear ratio and a custom-built two-piece driveshaft. Finally, a Soulless Innovations fuel cell had to be installed to clear some room and stay level. Four 24-inch copper colored Forgiato Turbinata wheels wrapped in 295-30-24 Lexani tires tuck nicely in the wheelwells when the air is released, and they look amazing!
The factory 5.3-liter gas engine has been left stock for the most part, and the interior has been given a few add-on creature comforts. Katzkin leather seat covers replace the factory cloth, and a custom-built fiberglass center console was created added for style points. The audio is controlled by an Alpine IVA NAV10 head unit and pumped to three 12-inch Kicker subwoofers in the cab. This quality of the truck is top notch, although we wouldn’t expect less from a true mason. Just another piece of Rich’s work that is forever embedded in the history books—and by that we mean Street Trucks, of course.
“I want to thank a few key people who helped me get this truck completed, including my son Richy Gentner III, Jeff Whooten and Matt Donovan for the help on the bed floor,” Rich says. “Thanks to Wes Dukes for pushing me to finish it when I lost motivation. Also, I want to thank my wife Brandi for supporting me to build vehicles.”
Rich Gentner, Jr.
2012 Chevy Silverado
- Fully built, 167.7-inch wheelbase chassis
- Integrated gooseneck hitch
- Suspension by IRB Kustoms
- Air Lift 2600-pound airbags in front
- Firestone double bellow back in rear
- AccuAir E-level
- Firestone airbags
- Custom wheel tubs and inner fenders
- 2012 Chevy 5.3-liter V-8
- GM 14-bolt limited slip rear dually axle
- 4:10 gear ratio
- Custom two-piece driveshaft
- Soulless Innovations fuel cell
- 24-inch copper colored Forgiato Turbinata wheels
- 295-30-24 Lexani tires
- GM Factory HD Silver Ice Metallic
- Grant Kustoms roll pan
- OEM dually bed
- Katzkin leather seat covers
- Alpine IVA NAV10 head unit
- Fiberglass center console
- Three 12-inch Kicker subwoofers