30 Years of Waiting Finally Paid Off
Steve Whitlock, from Provo, Utah, has Owned Whitlock Collision for 40 years. While all makes and models routinely pass through the family-owned business, Steve is a certified blue oval fanatic and has the lifetime list to prove it. The past inventory of cool classics includes five Falcons, five Fairlanes, four Galaxies, four Comets, a ’51 Ford coupe and this stunning ’56 Ford F-100. He’s always loved the ’56, especially with the big back window, but the build process was anything but quick.
This tale started almost 30 years ago when Steve traded a 1963 427 motor for a 429 Boss Nine. Throughout the years, parts were difficult to find until he finally heard about Jon Kaase’s Racing Engines, which specializes in the legendary motor. That connection, along with the experts at Strasburg Machine in Lindon, Utah, was the beginning of this Effie’s awesome power plant.
The Strasburg team began upgrading the internals, filling the 429 block with a 1969 Boss crank, SCAT rods and JE pistons, bringing the displacement to 466 ci. A COMP Cams hydraulic cam activates the Manley stainless valves in the Kaase Boss 429 aluminum heads. FiTech fuel injection on a Kaase intake delivers the fuel/air mix, Mallory electronic ignition lights the fire, and custom long tube headers dump into a 3-inch system with Flowmaster mufflers struggling to quiet the 800-hp beast. Once the beefed up 1976 C-6 three-speed auto with a 3,000-stall torque converter was modified by Clegg’s Auto of Orem, Utah, the monster motor was ready for a new home.
Clearly a stout chassis was necessary to handle the power; this one was built by Steve’s good friend Richard Speaker, a former race car builder. It incorporates reinforced rails that hold a Fatman Fabrications stainless-steel independent front end fitted with 2-inch drop spindles along with a 4-link in the rear to locate the Strange rearend with a 4.11 posi. The power rack-and-pinion steering is from Flaming River, and Wilwood disc brakes guarantee modern stopping power. Polished QA1 coil-overs snub all four corners. In order to make room in the cab, the 16-gallon fuel cell was relocated to the rear of the bed. The final step was transforming the chassis into a roller using Mickey Thompson fat and skinny 18- and 20-inch rims and rubber.
The truck was taking shape, but one major component was still missing, the cab. Fortunately, a friend knew of an F-600 dump truck that was the perfect solution. Although the fenders were in bad shape, the cab itself was pristine, thanks to the fact that the overhang on the dump bed protected the metal throughout the years. It was dirty, but after a clean-up, it looked like new.
With all of the components finally in hand, the assembly process could begin in earnest. The truck’s front end is a fiberglass tilt-forward unit, and the bed is from Dan Carpenter with a special touch. “Since I spent all of this money on chrome and modern engineering,” Steve told us, “I decided it was too pretty to hide it.” The clear Lexan bed now showcases the advanced component mix, and the tires are wide enough for separate ZIP codes, adding one more element to an already outstanding truck.
Coming into the home stretch, the interior was done by Gary Conrad in Herriman, Utah. Steve chose Ultra Leather in Raven Black and Deep Red for the ’80s Mazda MX6 seats, door panels, LED-accented headliner and custom center console. The console holds a Lokar shifter, the dash is loaded with Dakota Digital instruments, and the Le Carra wheel turns on an ididit column. The finishing touch was the flawless black base coat/clearcoat, sprayed in-house by Brad Larson.
Looking back, Steve says the seven-year build was worth every minute, especially once he had the truck on the road. He found a freshly paved stretch of asphalt, and when he nailed it, the front wheels came off the ground. The truck was completed less than a month before we photographed it at the F-100 Supernationals in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It was a long trip from Provo, but it was worth it. One of six trucks debuting at the event, Steve’s ride not only captured the Truck of the Year award but also the Street Trucks Editor’s Choice. Special thanks to Jeff Greenwald, Brad Larson, Jim Pearson, Richard Speaker, Chuck Miller and of course Steve’s wife Sheila for her amazing support throughout the build.
“Looking back, Steve says the seven-year build was worth every minute, especially once he had the truck on the road. He found a freshly paved stretch of asphalt, and when he nailed it, the front wheels came off the ground.”
Steve and Sheila Whitlock
1956b Ford F-100
- 1969 Boss Nine 466-ci V-8 Stroker, 800 horsephpower
- Machined by Strasburg Machine, Lindon, UT
- SCAT rods, JE pistons, COMP Cam
- Jon Kaase Boss 429 aluminum heads
- FiTech fuel injection
- Jon Kaase intake manifold
- Mallory electronic ignition
- Custom long-tube headers with stainless HPC coating
- Flowmaster mufflers
- March Performance, Jon Kaase air cleaner
- March Performance pulleys
- Jon Kaase valve covers
- Auto Rad radiator
- 1976 C6 Ford three-speed automatic transmission
- 3,000-stall torque converter
- Two Zirgo 15-inch trans coolers
- Transmission work by Clegg’s Auto in Orem, UT
Chassis & Suspension
- Boxed frame with Fatman Fabrications independent front end
- 4-link holding a Strange 9-inch rear with a 4.11 posi
- Four-wheel Wilwood disc brakes and QA1 coil-overs
- Flaming River rack-and-pinion steering
Wheels & Tires
- 18×5.5 and 20×16 Mickey Thompson
- 26×6.0R18LT and 33×22.0R20LT Mickey Thompson
Body & Paint
- Shop: Whitlock Collision Repair, Provo, UT
- F-600 cab with big back window
- One piece fiberglass tilt front end
- Dan Carpenter bed with Lexan floor
- Bumpers eliminated front and back
- Custom rear pan, side-exiting exhaust
- Fiberglass, widened rear fenders
- Halogen headlights, LED taillights
- Gloss Black base coat, clearcoat
- Paint by Brad Larson from Whitlock Collision Repair
Interior & Stereo
- Shop: HRH Designs
- Shop: Gary Conrad, Conrad’s Custom Upholstery, Herriman, UT
- ’80s Mazda MX6 seats and center console done in Raven Black and Deep Red ultra leather
- Carbon-fiber accents added to the door panels
- LED-accented headliner
- Lokar shifter, Le Carra wheel, ididit column
- Dakota Digital gauge package
- Dorton black carpet