Home Featured Trucks THE GOLDEN YEARS

THE GOLDEN YEARS

by Fuelish Media

Sometimes you just don’t know what you have until it slaps you right in the face to remind you. Just ask Chaz Calderon of Otis, New Mexico. His dad Marty has always been a paint and body guy, which meant that Chaz was surrounded by cars and trucks of all types all throughout his childhood. Although he would be the first to admit it, he’d be hard pressed to remember every one of the cool rides that passed though his dad’s shop, but there was one in particular that has stuck with him since those days. 

“My dad had purchased a ’67 C10 back in ’84 to be a backup work truck”, Chaz recalls. “It ended up being parked unused outside my dad’s shop, and I remember playing in it as a kid while he painted other vehicles. It wasn’t really until I got a little older when I really started paying attention to it and realizing just how cool it was.” 

When Chaz was in high school, his dad offered the truck to him. This immediately lit a fire under him to finally give his dad’s old Chevy the love that it deserved. “I worked on it a little bit, but then I slowed down on maintaining the truck. It sat for another three years or so until my dad and I decided to hit it hard and get it back on the road again.” 

Chaz figured this would be the perfect opportunity for his dad to showcase the paint skills that he has been making a living on since the 70’s. Together, Chaz and Marty began on a father/son project that most fathers and sons could only dream of. This particular truck has been in the family for nearly 40 years, and they very much intended to treat it like they would any of their immediate loved ones. 

While the task to get the truck to legit show worthiness proved to be a tall order, Chaz and his dad made the time after work, on weekends and on days off to make something big happen with the C10. Knowing that progress would speed up with some assistance, Chaz began searching for local talent to lend a helping hand. Enter Jeremy Rice of Tre 5 Customs. While Jeremy wasn’t exactly located in Chaz’s back yard (his shop is 600+ miles away in Peoria, AZ) his list of services and impressive track record was more than enough to land him the gig. 

 Jeremy’s role in the project was to first work on the C10’s suspension – a department he is very well-versed in. Utilizing the factory chassis, he first modified it by adding front and rear Porterbuilt Dropmember systems as well as drop spindles and ‘bags at each corner controlled by an AccuAir air system, as well as a healthy amount of Baer braking components. Jeremy even went so far as to fabricate a custom fuel cell to fit perfectly with the limited space he had available. To complement the lower stance, Chaz selected a fresh set of 22-inch Raceline wheels and Lionhart 255/30 and 335/25 rubber – quite a big upgrade from the truck’s original rolling gear. With a heavily updated rolling chassis on their hands, Jeremy was then freed up to begin the next phase of the C10’s resurrection. 

Since Chaz and his dad were dead set on taking their Chevy to the highest level, the truck would need a new engine. This led Chaz to track down a donor LS engine and matching transmission to work with. Jeremy was then able to completely go though the 2004 power plant and make enough upgrades to coax 450 horsepower from the modern mill. A set of Ultimate Headers, a Black Widow exhaust system, upgraded pistons and camshaft, as well as performance cooling gear in the form of a new radiator and twin e-fans really helped in preparing the LS for its new home between the C10’s frame rails. Of course, the engine was just begging to be dressed in All American Billet accessories, which Jeremy was happy to oblige. 

While the engine install was being finalized, Chaz and Marty remained vigilant in prepping the C10’s aging body for full revitalization. This is where the guys knew their skills would shine, so they planned to remain focused on this phase of the build themselves. The Calderons are meticulous in their craft, as they took the time to work the doors and fenders to a 3/16-inch gap, which resulted in a very tight and tidy appearance. Details like this directly impact a custom vehicle’s overall fit and finish. The bed stake pockets were shaved clean from the Chevy’s surface before the final massage placed the truck’s surface next in line for fresh paint. PPG White Gold proved to fit the bill just right with its cool, classic appearance – it was just the look the guys were aiming for. 

Replacement parts are always important in builds like these. To dial in the truck’s much more sophisticated appearance, Brothers front and rear bumpers were brought in, as well as new side mirrors, door handles and taillights from LMC Truck. Updated LED headlights from United Pacific were utilized to create much more illumination at night while still blending in with the classic look of the original ’67 grille. Since the bed floor had to be raised, the guys saw it as an ideal opportunity to deck it out with real wood planks for a much more polished appeal. 

Moving into the cab’s interior space, TMI Products was sourced for their quality dash pad and Buddy Bucket seats. These are shipped out ready to rock, so there’s no downtime waiting around for an upholsterer to get through with other jobs first. The distressed brown leather works perfectly with the brown carpeting and wood paneling on the dash and glove compartment door. The cab was also outfitted with Dakota Digital gauges, a Billet Specialties steering wheel, a cool Restomod Air A/C system, as well as a full sound system featuring Rockford Fosgate audio components. 

In about 3 years’ time, the Calderons were finally starting at a real life example of what they had only dreamt of prior. The cycle was finally broken for this C10’s on/off history. The days of it being cast aside and forgotten about are most definitely over. “Taking this project on with my dad and actually seeing it through in as little time as we did means everything to me”, Chaz says emphatically. “I’ve wanted to see this happen for this truck for so long, and finally being able to do it is really exciting for us. We’re looking forward to enjoying our finished project, and plan to bring it out to shows as often as possible.”

CHAZ CALDERON • ‘67 C10

  • 2004 Chevy 5.3L LS built by Tre 5 Customs, Peoria, Arizona 
  • 2004 GM 4L60E transmission 
  • Flat-top pistons 
  • Brian Tooley Racing camshaft 
  • Dual electric fans 
  • Aftermarket aluminum radiator 
  • Polished aluminum alternator and valve covers 
  • Trailblazer SS intake manifold 
  • Ultimate headers 
  • Black Widow exhaust and muffler 
  • All American Billet engine dress-up products
  • Porterbuilt front and rear Dropmember systems 
  • AccuAir air ride management system
  • Drop spindles 
  • Rack and pinion steering
  • Flaming River steering column
  • Positrac limited slip differential
  • Custom aluminum fuel tank by Tre 5 Customs 
  • Baer 14-inch brake kits, master cylinder and booster 
  • 22x8.5 and 22x12 Raceline wheels 
  • 255/30 and 335/25 Lionhart tires 
  • Bodywork and PPG White Gold paint by Marty and Chaz Calderon (Wagon Wheel Paint & Body)
  • Doors and fenders metal worked for 3/16-inch gapping
  • United Pacific LED headlights 
  • LMC Truck original style taillights, outer mirrors and door handles
  • Brothers front and rear bumpers 
  • Precision replacement glass 
  • TMI Products dash and Buddy Bucket seats and console in brown distressed leather
  • Wrapped original door panels by Steve Yiu, Phoenix, Arizona 
  • Dakota Digital RTX gauges 
  • Retro Sounds Long Beach head unit 
  • Rockford Fosgate amps, 6x9 front speakers and 10-inch sub 
  • Restomod Air A/C system and vents 
  • Billet Specialties steering wheel
  • Painless wiring 

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