The Cheyenne’s interior was treated to simple modifications, starting with the late ’80s Chevy truck 60/40 bench, which has been recovered in two-tone gray simulated leather. The seat brackets were shortened to reposition the seat backs below the rear window. Jim retained the stock gauges and factory tach, adding a few Auto Meter gauges to monitor boost, fuel pressure, and transmission temperature. A Nardi classic wood steering wheel was installed on the factory tilt column—and a Vintage Air system is installed “to take some of the sweat away from Northern California 100-degree summer days.”
After the exterior sheetmetal was sanded to bare metal, the upper moulding holes and stake pockets were filled. Jim spent uncountable hours blocking the body to ensure that it was as straight as possible before applying the paint. He used BASF Corvette Nassau Blue basecoat covered with enough coats of clear to allow for color sanding and buffing to a perfect finish. Many more hours were spent aligning the bed to the cab, aligning the lower factory mouldings, and modifying the front and rear bumper brackets to get the factory bumpers to fit tight and straight. The stock fuel tank was replaced with a custom aluminum tank located behind the rear bumper; a remote-operated fill door is positioned in the bed.
We’re sure you’ll agree that Jim’s got a lot to be proud of, especially since the Cheyenne is almost entirely owner-built. “With exception to the short-block, the transmission build, seat upholstery, and the aluminum tank, the entire restoration—including paint and body—was completed by me,” he explained.
It was a six-year project, and although the truck is finished, Jim is still thinking about ways to modify it. “I can’t help but think that an LS swap may be in the future, along with big brakes and a more contemporary suspension.”
Of course, that would mean that he’d have to stop driving it again, something he might not want to do, considering how much fun he’s having. “With about 5,000 carefree miles on the odometer, a handful of trophies from some local shows, and frequent gas station stops, it’s still hard to get the grin off my face after stabbing the throttle.”