Craig Legacy’s relationship with all things four wheeled goes back to his childhood which, as Craig puts it, was spent in the garage helping his father. It was these early adolescent memories that stuck with him and prompted him to build a classic truck in the first place.
But Craig didn’t want to build another cookie cutter Tri-Five Chevy; he wanted to build something a bit left of center, something different. After a few years of searching, he found what he’d been looking for online: a ’59 Chevy Apache located in Chino Valley, Arizona. Running with an inline six-cylinder, the truck had a fresh coat of paint, though it turned out to hide more problems than previously thought. This original guise provided Craig with a little bang ’round town fun for about six months until the old stovebolt gave up the ghost in the form of a blown head gasket. A week later and Craig, with the help of his nephew Kyle Zierer and friend Bill Spencer, had the truck completely disassembled on the floor of his garage—the project had begun.
The first task was to get rid of the years of built-up paint and bodywork by sending the sheetmetal off to get mediablasted. Upon its arrival, the guys were shocked to see just how bad a state the tin was in. Front and rear cab corners, toe boards, step plates, and a number of other small sections would need to be replaced, but not before Craig enrolled in a community college welding class for a refresher course.
Craig utilized his newly polished welding skills by also boxing the stock chassis before sending it over to Dagel’s Street Rods in Orange, California, where Gary Dagel installed the Total Cost Involved Mustang-II front suspension and mounted the Ford 9-inch rear off a set of four-link bars on All American coilovers. Disc brakes, residing at all four corners, are actuated by an under-the-floor-mounted Corvette master cylinder, while a power rack-and-pinion provides the steering duties. Craig wrapped up the chassis in his Laguna Niguel, California, home by plumbing the brakes and the No Limit aluminum fuel tank. Budnik Fontanas, 17x8s up front and 18x10s out back are shod in Nitto rubber, 255/45R17s and 285/40R18s respectively.
To power the quad-lighted hauler, Craig opted to replace the old six-banger with a Smeding Performance small-block Chevy 383ci stroker motor equipped with an Edelbrock Performer intake manifold and a Demon 625-cfm carb. A Billet Specialties Tru Trac system provides the mounting capability for the power steering pump, alternator, and A/C compressor, and keeps things looking good under the hood while a Griffin aluminum radiator keeps the motor happy and cool. Backing the 392-horsepower engine is a 700-R4 transmission built by Bow Tie Overdrives flanked by a pair of Flowmaster Super 44 mufflers.