1982 Chevy C10 - Black Widow

Driving the Wheels Off an American Classic

Dan Ward
Sep 1, 2012
Photographers: Harley Camilleri, Maxwell Matthewson
If the name Jose Peña sounds familiar, it's because he is the builder and owner of the 680 hp Silverado found on the cover of Issue 6, and he's also the builder and owner of this "King Lip" C10. Much like its newer counterpart in Issue 6, Jose's '82 C10 is subtle, with no wild graphics, over-the-top interior, or crazy sound system. The comparisons continue once you pop the hood and see a supercharged LS between the framerails, but the trucks become very different once you find out the inside story on his 30-year-old Chevy.
Photo 2/20   |   1982 Chevy C10 burnout
You see Jose's square-body has led several lives, one of which was as a work truck, but most recently, the '82 C10 was better known as Moving Violation—a 10-second show truck with a bug catcher sticking through the burgundy hood and 20-inch M/T meats out back. As the owner of Drops ‘R Us, in Houston, Jose is immersed in the hot-right-now custom truck trends, and with truck after truck coming in for big wheels, he made the decision to tear down his perfectly good show truck. In the process, he brought his C10 into the 21st century, and proved trucks leaving his shop will never fit the status quo.
Photo 3/20   |   This is how Jose's C10 looked circa 2010.
An order was placed for 22-inch Intro Gallup wheels for the front fenders, and out back, massive 24x15 billets would take the place of the 20s. To make the square-body lay out, Jose had to fabricate his own A-arms, and he then installed Firestone airbags, QA1 shocks, along with 14-inch Wilwood big brakes. Out back, the ladder bar and Firestone sleeved airbag setup was retained, but new Ride Tech adjustable shocks were bolted to the narrowed 12-bolt rearend with 4.30 gears. With the 15-inch-wide wheels slapped onto the axle and the air out the 'bags, the C10 had a completely new look, but that was just phase one.
Looking at the scoop protruding through the hood, Jose yanked the old carbureted big-block and slapped in a 6.0L from a new Silverado Vortec Max for some fuel-injected fury. That LS engine received a new Comp cam, head porting and polishing, and to really make some power, a 2.9L Whipple supercharger. Tuning was handled by Jake Brown of Brownspeed in Houston, for a painless plug-and-play install. Hitting the throttle brings to life more than 600 hp and enough tire smoke to startle the local fire department. Dressing things up under the hood, a billet serpentine setup from March looks great, while polished valve covers, a billet Wilwood master cylinder, and relocating the ignition coils behind the motor mounts really made the engine bay look clean.
Photo 7/20   |   1982 Chevy C10 bed
Driving the truck to Rhea's Chevy, in Humble, Texas, the guys filled their paint guns with PPG Black and forever changed the attitude of the square-body classic. A 3-inch cowl hood replaced the cutout piece, while an original '82 grille and rear bumper bring back the off-the-dealer-lot look. Inside the C10, Jose went for a hot-rod appeal, rather than the race-style that previously adorned the Chevy. Arjonas Upholstery in Pasadena, Texas, wrapped a new bench seat in grey leather and suede, swapped in black carpet, and covered the dash with matching leather. New Dakota Digital gauges fill the stock cluster, and a one-off steering wheel and Lokar shifter handle turning and gear selection chores respectively. For those hot summer months, Jose installed a Vintage Air A/C .
Photo 8/20   |   1982 Chevy C10 tailgate
Talking with Jose, he told us, "During the very first test drive I took it out on the interstate and it did 150 mph and ran great." You gotta love a man never satisfied with the status quo and with an insatiable need for speed. This black widow packs a nasty bite.
Photo 9/20   |   1982 Chevy C10 wilwood Big Brake Kit
Inside the Build

Year Make Model: 1982 Chevy C10
Owner and City/State: Jose Peña • Pasadena, Texas
Type: 6.0L Vortec Max
Heads: Polished
Cam: Comp .568 lift at 112LSA
Induction: Whipple 2.9L supercharger
Exhaust: Doug Thorley ceramic-coated headers with MagnaFlow mufflers
Cooling: Electric fans
Fuel System: Aeromotive fuel cell and 42 lb/hr injectors
Ignition: COP relocated to back side of motor mounts, MSD wires
Engine Management: Jake Brown at Brownspeed
Output: 605 hp and 588 lb-ft
Built by: Drops 'R Us • Houston, Texas
Photo 10/20   |   Powering the square-body is a 6.0L equipped with a Whipple supercharger, Doug Thorley headers, and custom tune by Brownspeed.
Transmission: 4L65E with 3,400-stall by Noe’s Transmission
Heads: Narrowed 12-bolt with 4.30 gears
Front suspension: McGaughy’s drop spindles, custom A-arms, Firestone airbags, QA1 shocks
Rear suspension: One-off ladder bar setup with Firestone ’bags and RideTech shocks
Brakes: Willwood 14-inch rotors with six-piston calipers
Photo 11/20   |   1982 Chevy C10 intro Gallup Wheels
Wheels & Tires:
Wheels: 22x8.5 and 24x15 Intro Gallup
Tires: 265/30R22 and 405/25R24 Pirelli P-Zero



Subscribe Today and Save up to 83%!

Subscribe Truck Trend Magazine

Subscribe to:

Truck Trend

Subscribe Diesel Power Magazine

Subscribe to:

Diesel Power

Subscribe Truckin Magazine

Subscribe to: