Some people just don't understand the fascination with trucks. Many still think trucks are for toting bales of hay, haulin' trailers, or any other work-related activity that has been highlighted throughout Chevy's "This is our country" ad campaign. If you ask Gary Stephan and his family about their view, the answer is simple: what other family vehicle can be used for day-to-day use, haulin' dirt bikes, and taking the family on numerous expeditions through the Southwest? Exactly.
When Gary and his wife Gayle married in '78, his '68 C-10 longbed, complete with a camper shell, became part of the family. And for the next 22 years the Chevy gracefully fulfilled its duties as both an around-the-town workhorse and a vacation vessel. But like all good things, they must come to an end, and eventually the truck was sold off to clear some space for other vintage toys of different sorts. Yet no matter what came and went, nothing could fill the void left by the '68. Longing to recapture the feel of miles clocked in a vintage hauler, the search was on for a '67-72 Chevy. And that's where this '70 C-10 Stepside, no pun intended, stepped in.
Gary found the truck in Colorado in basically the shape you see now. The previous owner had the truck built by Zoomers Automotive Garage in Denver clear back in '95. To say the least, the truck was built right, because Gary picked up an all-around solid packaged deal.
For starters, the truck was dropped on the ground using 2-inch spindles, Doetch Tech shocks, and Air Ride Technologies airbags. To keep up with the stop 'n' go lifestyle of today's highways and byways, the truck was outfitted with '72 Chevy disc brakes, a beefy sway bar, and a Camaro quick-ratio steering box. The rear of the truck was bagged to complement the front, and a 12-bolt with 3.73 gears was mounted up. Allowing the truck to roll down the road are American Racing Torq-Thrust IIs, 18x8-inch up front and 20x8-inch in the rear.
Providing power to the pavement is a Gen II Chevy motor, better known as an LT1. However, this isn't your run-of-the-mill fuel-injected LT1. This LT1 was built by Pat Condon Race Engines in Denver. There the motor was bored 0.30 over and 10.25:1 forged pistons were slid in. Next, a COMP Cams camshaft was installed along with an Edelbrock intake manifold and four-barrel carburetor. In the end, the old school/new school LT1 cranks out 395 horsepower. The LT1 has also been mated with a '94 700-R4 tranny.