One of the pioneers in the aftermarket suspension business is Brent VanDervort. As a kid he and his brother built a Model A pickup and it evidently got the creative and mechanical juices flowing because a string of more than 20 cars followed, not to mention the countless others he helped friends put together.
With his mechanical expertise and a business management degree Brent took what seemed to be the next logical step and opened Fatman Fabrications in 1985. Right out of the box the fledgling company developed a reputation for no-nonsense components that worked as they should, were affordable, and easy to install. Nearly 30 years later not much has changed in that regard, although the number of products certainly has.
Today Fatman offers an array of suspension kits and complete chassis for a wide variety of cars and he hasn’t forgotten those who are building trucks. A great example is the complete 1955-1959 Chevy truck chassis. Built from 2x5x.188-inch rectangular tubing for strength, the framerails are mandrel bent for accuracy; which means everything that attaches to the frame fits as it should. A variety of suspension options, as well as standard and Pro-Street configurations, allow customers to build a truck their way.
While Fatman’s new chassis offers outstanding ride and handling characteristics, something very special can be added to them as well—a VIN number. As an Accredited Manufacturer, Fatman Fabrications can supply a legal VIN number and a Statement of Origin to help title a complete reproduction vehicle (always check with your state DMV office for particulars).
Recently we took delivery of a Fatman Chevy truck frame that will find its way under our very own Jason “Installation Jason” Scudellari’s pickup project. As the guy in charge of Source Interlink Media’s Tech Center, Jason knows how to assemble a first-rate chassis. For steering, he chose a new Billet-Power rack-and-pinion unit from Flaming River. Made with all-new components, these new racks are lighter and stronger than OEM—and they’re better looking too.
For suspension at all four corners coilovers from RideTech got the nod. Well known as a leader in air spring suspension under the name Air Ride Technologies, RideTech is the same company with a new name and an ever-expanded product line. Their new coilovers are monotube gas pressure units with impact forged aluminum bodies and are available in fixed valve, rebound single adjustable, or triple adjustable versions.
With all the parts on hand it didn’t take long to put them in place, owing not only to Jason’s excitement to get his truck on the road, but the fact that everything fit like it should. This is a true state-of-the-art truck chassis and the cool thing is you can have one just like it.