It seemed like a simple proposition--Jeff Smith had a boat as his weekend toy and he needed a truck to get it to and from the lake. Working at Chrysler's Kokomo, Indiana, transmission plant made the purchasing decision a no-brainer. He bought himself a nice white '95 Ram fitted with a 318 Magnum and an automatic, and commenced to boat tuggin'.
But Jeff has a friend named Jeff Musgrave, which may or may not be such a good thing, depending on your frame of reference. See, Musgrave has a '67 Chevy truck to which he applied the Pro Street treatment a few years ago, and as the saying goes, "Misery loves company"--or something like that. Smith says, "Yeah, Jeff talked me into customizing it a little bit."
Of course, the first thing to do was adjust the vertical proportions of the truck. "I like the low look," Jeff says, so a set of Aim 2-inch dropped spindles were employed, with a flip kit out back. As time passed, the truck kept getting lower and lower with the additions of custom-built upper and lower control arms, and new hangers and shackles in the rear. To haul his boat (which the truck still needed to do), Jeff popped for a Firestone air-ride kit in the back. When he realized he could drop the truck even farther with the air ride, a set of bags were installed up front as well, allowing for an insane--though adjustable--11-inch drop all the way around. "I can set the truck right on the control arms up front, and the rear C-notch comes down right to the rearend housing. I'm going to make the C-notch deeper to drop the back even further and level it off," he says.
Body modifications had a similar snowball effect, starting with a ProFinish scooped hood, and Stylin' Concepts front bumper. By the time it was all over, Street Scene power mirrors, a Sir Michael's roll pan, and Fastback tonneau cover topped with an '85 Trans Am wing were put on the truck. Major metal surgery then ensued by shaving the front turn signals, filling the stake pockets on the bed, relocating and frenching the radio antenna, and replacing the taillights with a set of frenched Cadillac units.
The engine was left fairly stock, with improvements in the breathing department via K&N, Edelbrock headers, and a Flowmaster exhaust system, with a Crane 2000 ignition system making the most of it. Lots of chrome, aluminum, and stainless lines were then installed. A TransGo Shift Kit(TM) and B&M trans cooler were added to help get power to the 4.10-geared rear.
Interior modifications include a set of Chrysler LeBaron seats, a custom console, modified Eagle Talon shifter, California Concepts gauges, and Billet Specialties pedals. An Eclipse CD player with MTX and Pioneer speakers was installed, and several yards of tweed were thrown in to cover almost everything.
Jeff kept the truck white for a long time, but by this point it seemed only natural that he have some graphics applied, so he called Greg Fleenor to squirt them on. The bed also got the tweed treatment, with accents that mirror the truck's wild graphics. Along the way, the wheels and tires were upgraded to Billet Specialties Manta Stars, 16x8 in front, 16x10 in the back, shod with General 255/55ZR16 and 275/55ZR16 tires, respectively.
Jeff keeps upgrading and modifying the truck (we're sure with more than just a little goading from his buddy), but he still hasn't lost sight of its original purpose, and still hauls his boat with it. In fact, Jeff puts around 9,000 miles a year on his hauler, which is pretty impressive, especially when you consider that the truck isn't driven during the Indiana winters. Considering that, it makes you wonder who got the last laugh--Jeff, or his friend with the Pro Street Chevy?