It has been a while since we’ve updated what we’ve been doing with the ’55 Chevy shop truck, but rest assured we haven’t been sitting on our hands while the pick-up gathered dust. The LS1 V8 and 6-speed Tremec manual gearbox are mounted in the ’55 Chev passenger car chassis and we have the body and tub on to make sure the fat custom steel wheels clear the new custom wheel arches.
Because the tub is off a mid ‘70s C10 there has been a fair bit of trimming, beating and finessing of the guards and tray to make it all work, especially with the side-exit NASCAR-style exhaust Ryan and Eric have whipped up. The tray and rear of the chassis has also came in for a bunch of extra bracing to handle the 3.5-tonne, 10.5m long 5th wheel trailer it will pull when done.
While Ryan’s last Chevy pick-up floated just above Terra Firma on air suspension the United Speed Shop truck is a workhorse so it’s sitting pretty on QA1 coilovers we brought in from America. There will also be helper bags in the rear to handle the trailer’s weight and ensure everything is safe and roadworthy.
Sam at Bombwerks cut and sectioned the dash to convert the ’55 to right-hand drive, coated in Oxytech’s awesome EasyPhos surface sealant. EasyPhos is a bare metal treatment we use and recommend at United Speed Shop as it allows us to leave steel bare for months at a time, without risk of it rusting up and yet we can still weld through it! You can buy it for your project through our online store at the Surface Coatings page.
The HT Kingswood bench seat has been stripped and mounted in place, almost looking like it was designed for use in the ‘50s American commercial truck, and ready to be retrimmed. Before the bench is put in for the final time, however, Ryan has to finish off making a new firewall and transmission tunnel section to cover up where the back of the LS1 V8 and Tremec poke into the cabin.
Speaking of the engine and trans Ryan has been busy with Scotty from Oxytech and Chubby from Lowe Fabrications to decide on the motor’s final appearance. We couldn’t pop the hood of a sweet period-looking truck at shows and have a late model Commodore staring back so the 3 Amigos have put their heads together to retrofy the LS1.
We’ve put up a spy pic here just to give you an idea of what it will look like before we powdercoat it all up in the correct colours. We’re also working on fitting a set of killer big-inch Baer disc brakes to the front and rear of the truck to ensure it will safely tow the huge 5th-wheel.
Thanks to all our supporters for helping with the build, including Oxytech Powdercoating, Lowe Fabrications, Baer Brakes, Bombwerks, Summit Racing and Mallaby Sheetmetal. Keep an eye on our site and our Facebook (www.facebook.com/unitedspeedshop) as we bring you more updates!