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Finish Line Speed Shop Builds to Give Back

You could make the argument that all of us should give back to our communities, even if it’s just a little bit. Most of us would like to, but the execution sometimes goes by the wayside. How can we contribute? What can we do that can make a difference? In the case of Lyon and Jennifer McClenahan, owners of Finish Line Speed Shop in Bremerton, Washington, the answer was simple: build a car. But wait, this is Street Trucks, right? Don’t worry, we’ll get there.      

Back in 2015, the husband-and-wife team decided that they wanted to build a charity car for the SEMA show. They heard the story of Steve Connor, a disabled veteran who dreamed of building a ’67 Dodge Dart, so the couple worked their magic and made it happen. They built a killer car, debuted it at the 2015 SEMA show, and then gave it to Steve. Everybody was happy, and it was a great time. Lyon noted that the process restored their faith in humanity. 

 

One of the builders on that car was Mark Cain, who suffered from ALS. For the uninitiated, “ALS” stands for “amyotrophic lateral sclerosis,” but it’s more often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, after the famous baseball player who suffered from the condition. It’s a 100% fatal disease, with no known cure. So when Mark was diagnosed, he knew the end result; nevertheless, he pressed forward. He built the headers for the Dart, and just a few weeks after the show, he succumbed to his illness. 

 

The idea to build something in Mark’s honor didn’t come right away. Lyon needed time to process what happened, and building a SEMA truck is no small feat, particularly if you’re starting from scratch. But the team decided that doing it again would be a good experience for everyone involved, so they reached out to some of their sponsors from the Dart project to see if anyone was interested. The positive feedback was tremendous, and Lyon soon realized that he could make it happen. That’s when the plans for the MC-10 were set in motion. 

 

There are a lot of square-body trucks out there, as Lyon is well aware. But for the past few years, he’s had a ’75 long bed with 75,000 original miles. He had tentative plans to make it a short-bed and drop an LS engine under the hood. Now it would be the basis for the new project, but Lyon still wanted to do something different. It was important that the stance was right, and the right motor was a significant requirement. But there were other things that they had to do to stand out; he just had to figure out what they were. 

By the time the job was done, there were two major things that put this truck in a class of its own. First, the trim was color flipped. If you look inside the body moldings, instead of being black on the inside with chrome on the outside, it’s the exact opposite. The remaining trim that was chrome has also been blacked out to maintain the theme throughout. It’s a nice touch that’s both subtle and impactful. 

 

The second is inside the bed. When you lay out a truck, you either have to raise the bed floor to cover the notch, or cut out the bed for the frame to come up through it. In this case, Lyon and his team did both. They raised the bed floor to help, but they still wanted to keep access to the chassis in case they had to make repairs. The resulting fix was a stroke of genius that came to fruition just two weeks before the 2016 SEMA Show. 

 

First, the floor was raised, as we already mentioned. In its place went the stainless steel trim panel that some Chevy truck models have along the tailgate, just underneath the handle. In fact, they kept the Chevrolet badging and the tailgate handle in this setup, which looks odd until you figure out what it’s for. Then they took two 1975 Chevrolet hoods and combined them to form a cover over the notch. That cover is hinged just like a stock hood, and to open it, you use the tailgate handle in that stainless steel panel. It even uses the original hood latch. We’ve never seen anything like it before, and it certainly stands apart from the crowd. 

When the build was done and the truck was taken to SEMA, it got a ton of attention, and did its job to help raise awareness for ALS research. After taking it to a few shows across the country and appearing on PowerNation TV, they put it up for sale at the Mecum Auction, and in the end they gave a big check for more than $15,000 to the ALS Association, Evergreen Chapter. 

 

With two builds down, the question is obvious: Will they do it again? Absolutely. Their latest project will be ready for the 2017 SEMA Show, and it already has the support of many of their sponsors. In fact, more than 15 from last year’s build have returned, and 10 have been onboard for all three. It’s just more proof that giving back is always a good thing. Sometimes all you have to do is build a truck. 

Truck Specs

Owners:

Lyon and Jennifer McClenahan

1975 Chevrolet C-10

Bremerton, WA

Engine: 

Finish Line Speed Shop, Bremerton, WA

2006 5.3l Chevrolet LS V-8

2007 4L65E automatic transmission

Mishimoto LS dual pass radiator

Porterbuilt Fab motor mounts

Hedman C-10 LS swap headers

Black Widow dual exhaust with polished mufflers

DC Power, Inc. polished aluminum 270-amp XP alternator with billet rear frame

Mishimoto electric fans with shroud

Airaid U-build it cold air intake and air filter

Poweraid throttle body spacer

Vintage Air AC compressor relocation brackets

Russell Performance hoses

Painless Performance LS standalone harness 

Painless Performance chassis harness

Eddie Motorsports billet hinges

MSD Ignition coils

Stage 8 locking header bolts

Russel Performance plumbing

Driven Racing oil

Ididit steering column shifter cable kit

Energy Suspension motor mounts

Tanks, Inc. gas tank from Summit Racing

POR-15 black engine paint

12-bolt Chevrolet axle

3.73 rear gears

Eaton Detroit Truetrac differential

Chassis & Suspension

Finish Line Speed Shop, Bremerton, WA 

Porterbuilt Fab Level 3 front Dropmember

CPP Modular 2.5-inch drop spindles from Summit Racing

Dominator 2600 front airbags from Summit Racing

Porterbuilt Fab 1-inch narrowed control arms

RS502 QA1 adjustable front shocks

Porterbuilt Fab Level 3 rear Dropmember

Porterbuilt Fab rear bridge with inboard ’bag mounts

Porterbuilt Fab 4-link

F9000 rear airbags from Summit Racing

RS504 QA1 adjustable rear shocks

AccuAir Switch Speed air management system with ENDO-VT

Two VIAIR 444 Stealth black air compressors

Master Power Brakes Pro Driver series 13-inch front rotors with four-piston calipers

and 12-inch rear rotors with four-piston calipers

Master Power Brakes vacuum power booster

Wheels & Tires

22×9 Centerline California Smoothie wheels from Summit Racing

House of Kolor Blood-Orange-painted centers with polished lips

#CapClips clips for 1975 ¾-ton 12-inch hub caps

265/35R22 & 285/35R22 Toyo Proxes STII

Body & Paint

Finish Line Speed Shop, Bremerton, WA 

Painted by Jeff Rider at Details Details Details, Bremerton, WA

House of Kolor BC26 White with Ice White Pearl

House of Kolor S2-LE03 Limited Edition Blood Orange over KD3004 Red Sealer

House of Kolor Red, White and Black pinstriping by Ron Wall at Off the Wall Kreations

Brothers Truck Parts paintable front and rear bumpers, painted black

Brothers Truck Parts door handles, painted black

All trim, bolts and grille blacked out with brushed inserts

Slosh Tubz inner fenders and fillers

Raised stock bed floor 

Custom notch cover made from two 1973-80 truck hoods and original latch assembly

Custom cut-out for accessing and viewing the suspension

United Pacific LED headlights

United Pacific taillights with black-painted trim

Billet Badges custom Strike Out ALS ribbon badges

Prevision Replacement Parts weather-stripping

Interior & Stereo 

Finish Line Speed Shop, Bremerton, WA 

Work performed by Josh Kalalau, Brendan Greene, Ryan Reid and David Boehl

Rostra Precision seat warmers

GM vinyl with suede inserts

Original bench seat

Brothers Truck Parts black carpet kit

Brothers Truck Parts interior door handles

Original headliner recovered in black GM cloth

Original dash pad dyed black

Custom CON2R Pomona steering wheel

Ididit tilt steering column

Dakota Digital HDX gauges

Vintage Air AC kit

Door inserts painted House of Kolor Blood Orange

Custom lower door panels to hold Kicker component speakers

Kicker IQI Bluetooth Interface

Two Kicker 6.75-inch components, Q Class mids and tweets

Three Kicker 8-inch L7 Q Class subwoofers

One Kicker IQ500.4

One Kicker IQ1000.1

Kicker amp installation kits and speaker wiring

XS Power Vintage series battery

Rostra Precision backup camera, front parking camera and rearview mirror system

Boom Mat by Design Engineering, Inc. sound deadener

Special Thanks From the Owner: “Covercraft Car Covers; West Hills Auto Plex; Haselwood Chevrolet; Quick Trick Alignment; all of our partners; our entire Finish Line Speed Shop, Project Giving Back Team and their families for all the time, passion, love, effort, hard work and long hours they put into the Strike Out ALS MC-10 truck build. Thank you Brendan Greene, Jeff Rider, Ryan Reid, David Boehl, Daniel Veach, Connor Veach, Aidan Veach, Kevin Veach, Chuck Russell, David Sanders, Ron Wall, Tony Beeler and Josh Kalalau. My kids Masey, Colby, Brody and my amazing wife, Jennifer, who is the glue that holds everything together in the middle of the SEMA crunch.”

Captions:

The 5.3l LS V-8 found in the truck came from a 2006 Chevy, and it runs just as reliably as you’d expect. 

Square-body trucks look so good laying on the ground, and they can tuck 22s like it’s their job. 

The interior is stock, with just a touch of custom, like the steering wheel, painted door panels and suede inserts on the stock seat. 

A trio of Kicker 8-inch L7 square (naturally) subwoofers is tucked behind the factory bench and provides the boom. 

That tailgate handle in the gap created by the body-dropped bed opens up the hood that covers up the notch. Now that’s cool. 

That notch cover isn’t standard work. It’s made from two square-body hoods and uses the factory latch to lock everything in place. 

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