1998 Chevy 3500 - The Ultimate Support Vehicle
This ’98 Chevy is more than just transportation
Greg Intzegian, from Vero Beach, Florida, got started in the custom truck scene as a result of his brother Steven and the club members of Relaxed Atmosphere. Together, the group would attend shows and display Stevo’s custom ’98 S-10. Unfortunately, Steven lost his life in an accident while working on his truck. Greg took the loss hard, and it has taken some time for him to recover. It has been several years since Steve’s passing, and thanks to a combination of Greg’s love for the sport and the support of his club members, he is back enjoying the truck scene with a pair of vehicles. In addition to Stevo’s custom S-10, Greg now has the perfect tow vehicle when it’s time to head to shows.
Greg found his ’98 Chevrolet 3500 Crew Cab dualie on the Internet. Much of the work had already been accomplished by Silver Star Customs in Horn Lake, Mississippi. The dualie was bagged and had a ’99 Yukon Denali front clip on it. A stainless steel billet grille added some bling, while shaved door handles smoothed up the body lines. Eight-inch LED taillights in the tailgate make sure nobody rear-ends the rig. Distinctive 22.5-inch Ion Bilt forged semi rims were wrapped in 35-series Sumitomo rubber and now feature scary-looking bullets to ensure pedestrians don’t venture too close. When it arrived, the truck needed some work, but Greg was able to repair the damaged fenders and tune the rough-running motor for maximum performance.
Although the dualie looked great on the outside, one of its main attractions was its unique interior. The distinctive fiberglass center console is the focal point. It not only separates the four bucket seats but also fills the cab with plenty of bass, thanks to the built-in collection of multiple subs. Control for the sound system begins with the Valor ITS-702W head unit, which boasts a 7-inch, flip-face LCD screen and features DVD, MP3, and iPod capabilities. It manages the output from the pair of Memphis amplifiers hidden in the center console, with the first 800-watt amp powering the JL Audio component sets in the doors and the second 1,800-watt amplifier energizing four Pioneer 10-inch subs. The forward portion of the console was fitted with Viair gauges for the air suspension system, monitoring the front and rear bags along with the twin 5-gallon reserve tanks hidden underneath the bed. A pair of Viair 480 compressors augmented with a York engine-driven compressor pressurizes the system through SSC valves and ½-inch copper hard lines.
Although the air suspension system allows for adjustable altitude, there was lots of suspension work accomplished as well. The ContiTech air spring system was chosen for its strength and durability. It’s capable of dropping the truck nearly to the ground yet heavy duty enough to allow it to function as a tow vehicle. Airbags with triple bellows were used in the rear of the truck. The bags are positioned over the axle for a cantilever action. A Panhard bar keeps everything lined up. Silver Star fabricated the unique spider-style bridge over the rear axle, complete with a fifth-wheel ball. There’s also a hidden hitch in the rear that allows Greg to tow a standard trailer. Front suspension upgrades include 2-inch Belltech dropped spindles and 2,800-pound bags, along with custom tubular upper and lower A-arms, which have been modified to allow the truck to rest almost on the ground.
Powering the big rig is a big-block 454 Vortec V-8, equipped with an Airaid intake, Jet Performance mass airflow sensor, and stainless 4-inch exhaust fitted with 40-series Flowmaster mufflers. A four-speed automatic transmission gets the power to the ground.
Although the truck is Greg’s daily transportation, it has also been a big help in coping with the loss of his brother. It has brought him back to the show scene that he shared with Steven. The truck, which is capable of winning trophies on its own, is also perfectly suited to its role as a tow vehicle for Stevo’s S-10. Future plans call for a new gunmetal gray paintjob with black accents—a scheme Greg feels will add an elegant look to the Chevy. Greg sends special thanks to his wife, Teri, as well as friends Harry Adams, Anthony Giambri, and Jeremy Grogan for all their help, along with the experts at Silver Star Customs.