When most people think of street rods, thoughts of ’32 Fords, pre- and post-World War II lead sleds, and wild customs come to mind. However, more and more trucks have joined the crazy trail mix in the past few years, including the ’73-’87 Chevrolet C10 and its squarebody brethren. And why not? They’re the perfect platform for all the same custom tricks used to build street rods to this day.
Not too long ago, C10 Builders Guide witnessed this first-hand on a trip to Louisville, Kentucky, the home of Muhammad Ali, the Kentucky Derby, and—on the first weekend of August for 25 consecutive years (28 years overall) as of 2022—the National Street Rod Association Street Rod Nationals. Now in its 53rd overall year, the Nationals attracts tens of thousands of street-rod owners from all over the country and beyond, along with a crowd size to match the herds of horsepower gathered at the Kentucky Exposition Center, not far from the other home of horsepower, Churchill Downs.
So long as the vehicle is at least 30 years old at the time of that year’s Street Rod Nationals (1992 for the 2022 edition), it’s more than welcome to soak up the sun and blue skies for four days of custom excitement. For C10 fans, that means seeing the entire third and final generation in as many forms as the eye can see.
And if you’re looking to bring a C10 into your life, August 5, 2023, must be circled on your calendar. Harrison’s Rod and Custom of Greenville, Tennessee, is building a 1977 C10 for the NSRA Street Rod Nationals Giveaway Street Rod, which will be given away via a drawing at the expo center’s Freedom Hall. All you need to do is be an NSRA member, have your custom ride registered for the 2023 Nationals and on the grounds of the expo center on August 5, 2023, and be in the audience in Freedom Hall to hear your number drawn.
Until then, here are a few samples of all of the C10s and their relatives enjoying the scenery at the 2022 Nationals.