Focused and Driven
Time and time again, we see project trucks end up on some online marketplace because the owner is fed up and ready to walk. Whether it’s another incorrect part they can’t return, the lack of indoor storage space to keep all their stuff, for some reason or another most projects never make it across the finish line. So, when we hear a story about a 15-year build that the owner never gave up on, we just had to know more.
Ben Duran out of San Antonio, Texas, had a vision for the perfect truck when he was just 15 years old. A smooth looking, low sitting, bright colored classic truck is the image that he envisioned, and all he needed was some time and a little money to make it his reality. Once he picked up this ’55 Chevy truck, nothing would get in his way and quitting was not an option. The exterior of the truck needed some love first and foremost, so Ben installed a 1957 hood along with a 1959 Fleetside bed to give it a unique style. Additionally, he shaved the gas filler door and added a Tanks Inc. universal fuel cell under the bed. After the rust was repaired and the body was ready for color, William Ocho from San Antonio painted the panels Dupont Laurel Green and Crocus Yellow before the graphics were added.
To get the truck at the right stance, Ben and his friend Erik Rosales modified the factory-installed 1955 truck frame. A Camaro front subframe and rear step notch with four-link allow it to sit on the ground, while Air Lift airbags front and rear with Viair compressors lift it up when he’s ready to cruise. Powering this build is a Chevy 350 c.i. small block with flat top pistons and a COMP Cams 246PE camshaft. An Edelbrock Performer intake manifold and 600 cfm carburetor were next on the list, along with 1 ¾-inch Patriot headers combined with a 3-inch Flowmaster exhaust that allows the air to escape out of the back of the truck. Finally, for some additional bling, all new aluminum and chrome dress up accessories were added as well. Transferring the power is a 700r4 transmission with a B&M 70325 shift kit. This combo also has a Hughes Performance torque converter with a 2,000-rpm stall speed. The 10-bolt posi rearend has been narrowed for a wider wheel, and 3:73 gears were added. For additional stopping security, Classic Performance Products brakes and master cylinder were included. The icing on the cake are the massive 24×9 and 24×15 custom engraved Raceline Deceptive wheels wrapped in Pirelli tires.
The last part of the process was the interior upgrades. Mustang Interiors in San Antonio used brown leather and suede to wrap the original bench seat. Dakota Digital VHX gauges were wired up, and a new Billet Specialties classic steering wheel added a nice touch. For audio, a Pioneer touch screen radio was installed, and it sounds great! Ben ran through all the standard problems without giving up on his vision.
“Anything is possible with family and friends by your side,” Ben says. “Plus, a lot of beer can help with the stress.”
We couldn’t agree more.