More times than not, even the simplest of plans turn into a full-blown outline on how to dismantle an atomic bomb. All it takes is that first step, and before you can say, "Steve Perry," you've already moved forward in leaps and bounds. Frank Quadrato knows a thing or two regarding this subject.
When Frank and his then 14-year-old son, Chris, set out to build this '54 Chevy longbed, the plan was short, simple, and to the point: teach the boy how to paint and do bodywork and then give him something to drive when freedom rings at the age of 16. Well, it wasn't too long before they decided to do this, which led to that, that in turn opened this door and, before they knew it, two years later there was a full-blown show truck in front of them.
Before any body lessons could take place, a few ground rules needed to be taken care of first-and it started with assembling the chassis. For starters, the frame was stripped down and cleaned up. From there, the straight-axle up front was tossed and Frank installed a Mustang II frontend and motor mounts to accommodate a V-8 transfer. Up front, the truck was dropped with spindles and new coil shocks, but the rear received a different treatment. To optimize road manners, airbags were set up in the rear of the truck for instant adjustment when needed. Once the frame was worked out, it was then disassembled and taken down to the powdercoaters. Giving the truck that much-needed hot rod sound, and some get up, is a 350 yanked from a Monte Carlo. The motor has been stroked for added horsepower-and a Holley carb helps the motor breathe fresh air. For ideal driving conditions in all areas, a Turbo 400 transmission was bolted up behind the motor.