They say the Sultan of Swat was born with a Louisville Slugger in his hands. In Greek mythology, the Mighty Thor wielded a hammer as a mere babe. Unlike Thor and the Bambino, 19-year-old Brian Anderson has his parents telling the true tales. From the time Brian was a baby, he was always building things, especially out of Legos. The Lego-comprised creations of his youth gave way to the pursuit of a career as an automotive engineer. Currently, he's enrolled at the two-year Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, California. Hoping that some, if not all, of the Anderson offspring would catch custom car/truck fever, the Anderson patriarch, Brent, began taking his boys to car shows while they were young and impressionable. Alas, none of the lads showed any signs of car lust until the last in the litter. Thank goodness for sons named Brian!
In Boston a few years ago, Brent and Brian found a '33 Dodge truck. Though advertised as a complete frame-off renovation, Brent's drive back from Bean Town in the Dodge proved otherwise. Unbearable bumpsteer and numerous breakdowns along the route west tested the senior Anderson's tenacity and ingenuity at getting the hauler to its new home in one-piece.
Once back in the Golden State, Brent and Brian (B&B) took the truck apart. They boxed the original framerails and replaced the engine and trans mounts. To eliminate the bumpsteer, a Fatman Fabrications IFS, replete with Air Ride Technologies airbags, replaced the Rube Goldberg setup. For the rear axle, B&B installed a Ford 9-inch, with a final drive ratio of 3.00:1. Modified leaves and Air Ride Technologies 'bags formed the rear suspension. Disc brakes for the front wheels and drums for the rear now get brake fluid from a Kugel Komponents master cylinder with power boost. A rack-and-pinion steering box with Borgeson linkage enhanced steering immensely.
Since the truck already had a reliable '72 Chevy 350ci, B&B had Lotten Machine Shop of Fort Bragg, California, do some minor inspection and machining. For reliable street duty, Lotten installed a mild R.V. cam. B&B reassembled the engine and added an Edelbrock aluminum intake manifold and a Holley Avenger four-barrel carburetor. Fort Bragg Transmissions built a '79 GM 350 trans with a shift kit, a J.C. Whitney trans cooler, and a Lokar shifter.
Though the work on the chassis and drivetrain required to make a safe street rod was considerable, the amount of bodywork needed on the Dodge was immense. To correctly repair bodywork that had been done with too much body filler, Brent and Brian welded in patch panels. A new firewall, a cab floor, toe boards, a roof, and a welded-shut cowl vent came next. They replaced the front fenders, running boards, and rocker panels while also widening the rear fenders 1 1/2 inches. The final bodywork, paint prep, and paint became Brian's autoshop senior project. Painter and Brian's mentor Andy Moilanen and his assistant John Sousa performed minor finish bodywork and paint prep before Andy covered the Dodge in two-tone House of Kolor Candy Burgundy over Platinum Pearl. Brian would have been involved with the entire paint process, but because the spraying started on the day of his senior prom, he was otherwise occupied that evening.
Before turning the truck over to an expert upholsterer, Brent and Brian wired it with an E-Z Wiring harness. Mike Bazzani, owner of Bitchin' Stitchin' of Ukiah, California, tastefully upholstered the Glide Engineering seat in gray vinyl. With 33s artfully stitched into the door panels, the rest of the cab received the similar trimming treatment, but in two tones of gray vinyl. The Anderson team installed the Secret Audio six-disc CD/stereo system with 500-watt Pyramid and 250-watt Alpine amps, a 10-inch Sony Xplod subwoofer (times two), Alpine 6-inch door speakers, and Alpine tweeters. To finish construction of the Dodge, B&B crafted a custom center console, which they covered with gray wool carpet.