The lowered stance comes from a combination of a Z’d frame in front with dropped spindles
We are always interested in finding out the motivation behind great-looking trucks and very often, we discover it’s a family connection. That was certainly the case with Shawn Sammons from Eudora, Arkansas, and his amazing 1967 GMC Sierra. Shawn is self-employed, working in pipeline restoration. His automotive connection came about thanks to his grandfather, George McNaughton, a mechanic for the last half-century and still an active automotive enthusiast. George maintains a shop behind his home, keeping his hand in with occasional jobs for friends as well as helping grandson Shawn to create this masterpiece.
The license plate appears and disappears with the ignition key.
Shawn’s first truck was a 1968 Chevrolet with a bad motor. It didn’t turn out as he planned, but Shawn learned lots about trucks by working on that one. His second truck, however, was an absolute success. He found this ’67 GMC Sierra in 2001 with only 28,000 original miles on it. Even though it had some dents and rust, it was still fairly solid, so the customizing plans began to take shape. Shawn saved his money for a couple of years, buying parts and starting the build in 2004. The original plan was to install a big-block motor with a static drop, but as the personalizing process advanced, more and more changes found their way into the build. Shawn learned that customizing the truck is almost like a jigsaw puzzle. “I would do this one thing and then realize I had to do something else to make it work.”
Shawn Sammons and his grandfather, George McNaughton, share a love for custom trucks and w
Wanting to take the truck to a level beyond his own talents, Shawn contacted Silver Star Customs in Horn Lake, Mississippi, giving them the task of creating his dream truck. Owner, Clyde Bynum handled the mods. First, he boxed the frame, then Z’d the front portion and added tubular A-arms, dropped spindles, and Firestone airbags. The rear was back-halved and a Ride Tech triangulated four-link with Shock Waves was installed to hold the ’79 Lincoln rear with disk brakes, 3.73 gears, Mosier axles, and Detroit Locker. The pair of AccuAir compressors was mounted on the frame along with one of the 5-gallon reserve tanks. The second tank shows off the Accuair logo from its position in the bed. Ensuring plenty of cruising range, a stainless 20-gallon fuel tank was custom fit to the chassis without extending below the roll pan. Getting the truck rolling are BAD Gunslinger rims, 20x8 in the front and 22x10 in the rear, wrapped in Nitto 30- and 35-series rubber. They fit Shawn’s idea of a ’70s muscle-car look.
An airbrushed side spear, reminiscent of a ’57 Chevy, wraps around the welded tailgate, wh
Bodywork began by rounding the bottom of the doors, shaving the driprails and door handles, and using the key latches to activate the doors. Windshield wipers were eliminated and one-piece power windows were installed in both doors. Three different bumpers were cut, reshaped, and welded together to match the body lines, with teardrop parking lights added as a styling touch.
Bed upgrades began with a new tailgate from LMC with the GMC logo. Two sets of inner fender panels were cut in half and widened to accommodate the fat rear tires and the bed floor was raised 4 inches to clear the suspension. The bedwalls were smoothed with sheetmetal and the ribbed floor was covered with bedliner. In order to showcase their suspension work, a hinged cover with gas struts was added over the rear axle. Custom aftermarket taillights in the new rear pan wrapped up the exterior.
Separated by a custom center console, the slim 1969 Camaro-style seats fit perfectly in th
The interior of the truck contains new black leather, ’69 Camaro-style bucket seats ordered from Year One. The custom center console features a black textured top and sides covered in matching leather. Dakota Digital gauges monitor vital engine functions, and the Billet Specialties steering wheel turns on an ididit tilt column. The Pioneer stereo uses two Pioneer amps and two shallow-mount 12-inch subs in the rear cab wall. Two 6½-inch component sets inside the kick panels round out the mix. Bynum built the kick panels and stereo box while Maurice from Memphis upholstered the rear cab wall and the door panels.
The hinged cover over the axle plate reveals the narrowed Lincoln 9-inch rear end, Shock W
Under the hood is a 5.3L (327ci V-8) that his grandfather found. It runs Corvette injectors and throttle body on a Weiand intake. The front pulley assembly came from Street & Performance with a polished Camaro water pump, 200-amp Power Master alternator, and chrome Vintage Air A/C compressor. They added Hydroboost for the brakes and positioned a Corvette master cylinder on the smooth firewall. S&P headers feed stainless steel Magnaflow mufflers. The motor is hooked up to a 4L60E transmission with a nostalgic Lokar shifter controlling the action. Cosmetics on the motor include the unique engine cover from Street and Performance, modified by Bynum to make it fit. He also added his shop’s logo, a subtle spider web, underneath the polished hood.
Beautifully painted inner fender panels and firewall mimic the truck’s exterior graphics a
The long construction process was finally complete with the elegant paintjob that is a combination of Mercedes silver and charcoal. The airbrushed side spear, with a brushed metal effect, is similar to a ’57 Chevy Bel Air. From start to finish, the build began in 2001 and finished in November 2010. In fact, Shawn finished it three days before the SEMA show and drove 26 hours straight to get there on time. What was the best part? Shawn flew his grandfather out, and not only did he get to see the truck on display in Las Vegas, but it was also his first time on a plane. Two memorable experiences in one week! Special thanks to George McNaughton, Gerald Barnett, Clyde Bynum, and Mike Alexander. CCT