Custom Chevy S-10 - The Color Purple
10x Better Than That Chick Flick
If any of you had the misfortune of watching that cinematic sob-fest starring Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey, then we're sorry, but we promise this will be a much more entertaining story - after all, it doesn't star Whoopi or Oprah, and it doesn't have any stupid metaphors about purple flowers. What it does have, though, is a chick named Kimberly Baines and her purple body-dropped, chopped longbed extended S-10. Interested? Yeah, we were, too.
The truck was originally purchased near her home in Sylmar, California - however, it was extremely different. Extremely, as in Chevy's Xtreme package, which features a plastic body kit on the truck. She had planned on making a few minor aftermarket improvements on the S-10, yet there was one problem - her boyfriend Phil is a mini-trucker, and unless he's currently sitting behind bars with Michael Jackson, the word minor doesn't exist in any mini-trucker's vocabulary.
To make things even worse, Phil worked at one of California's premier shops, IF Customs, which is known for building some of the lowest trucks to ever drag across the planet. Phil took one look at the truck and called his buddy Travis Pruis with a list of mods and a request for a rendering. Travis pulled through and Phil brought the new rendering down to the boys at IF Customs. The list of mods was extensive, but as always, everyone at IF Customs was down.
Carey and Phil began by ripping off the body kit along with the front and rear bumpers. Two-inch drop spindles and Firestone 2600 'bags were used up front, and a rear frame clip was constructed that would not only accept the longer bed, but hold the rear axle in place with a two-link as well. The cab floor was sectioned and the cab mounts were moved down for the stock-floor body drop, and the front framehorns were notched so the new Oldsmobile Bravada bumper would sit flush on the ground. Custom tranny and gas tank crossmembers were fabricated to raise the components up and out of the way, and a new driveshaft was made to make up for the 11-inch stretch that the frame received. Next, the bed was stock-floored and the fuel filler was relocated onto the hump. An Optima battery was mounted beneath the bed floor and an access panel was cut out near the tailgate.
Just in case you aren't familiar with the guys from IF Customs, they've got a thing for not only building trucks that lay flat on their rockers, but also for being lower than the truck sitting next to them at a show, even though it's also laying rocker. To accomplish this, they either section the body or chop the top - hell, sometimes they do both. Not surprisingly, Phil wanted Kimberly's truck as low as possible, so the Sawzall was pulled out to eat through a few cab pillars. With the help of Fonze and Travis, the roofline was brought down 1-1/2 inches. To save some money on glass, the stock glass was retained and tucked down within the body panels once the pillars were welded back to the body. The rear window was the only window that had to be recut, so Keith at Above All Glass was called in to handle it.
Since the truck was already torn apart, they took everything that wasn't bolted to the frame and had Jim Sarcone in Van Nuys, California, shoot Candy Purple on the pile of parts. Once the parts were returned, the daunting task of reassembly began. Up front, the AC compressor was lowered 1-1/2 inches to clear the hood and a new AC box was fabbed up. The factory wheelwells were replaced with trailer wheelwells to create more room as well as give a cleaner look under the hood.
To smooth out the truck, the handles, driprails, lights, hood squirters, and gas door were all shaved, and a Sir Michaels roll pan was added to the rear. The bases of the side mirrors, which were snagged from a '95 Honda Civic, were modified to fit the door pillars and bolted into place. A set of Caddy taillights was frenched into the rear corners of the bed and a filler piece was used to minimize the gap on the tailgate. You would think that the cab had seen enough cutting and welding, however, Phil decided one more thing was needed. A 30x35-inch piece was marked off in the roof, cut away, and replaced with a ragtop.
With all of the attention that was paid to the exterior, there was no way that they were going to go easy on the interior. Rags to Rides in Van Nuys replaced the factory carpet with black Mercedes threads. The stock seats were covered with light- and dark-gray leather, and the door panels were treated to black and purple suede inserts. Carey and Phil worked a little fiberglass magic and created a free-form sub box that holds two 12-inch Rockford Fosgate subs as well as a 500-watt Rockford Fosgate amp. While Jim was doodling one day at the shop, Phil saw a swirling design he liked and duplicated it out of 1/8-inch steel and had it chromed. These swirling designs sit on top of the subs and act as grilles for the speakers. A matching center console was constructed and houses the Dakota Digital gauges for the 'bags.
The final step was to spray some paint on the truck. After Jim did all the bodywork and final prep, the S-10 was based in BMW Silver. Phil then taped out the graphics that surround the vehicle, which the guys have deemed Phil Weed for its slight resemblance to seaweed, and had Jim cover using Candy Purple. Carey and Fonze then shared the job of pinstriping the graphics in blue.
Needless to say, Kimberly was more than impressed with the transformation her truck underwent from a stock Xtreme that could only drag plastic if it went over a curb to a body-dropped and chopped truck that can rail with the best of them. She'd like to thank Brandon at Rozzi; the guys at IF Customs; Carey, Fonze, Cracker, and Chris; Jim Sarcone; Joe at All American Air; Keith at Above All Glass; Rags to Rides; Down to Earth; and of course, Phil, the love of her life.