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A 383 Stroker Powered 1997 GMC Sonoma - ICUH8TN

Thinkin’ out of the Box

Phil Gordon
May 19, 2015
Photographers: Phil Gordon
When it comes to a passion for trucks, the apple never falls far from the tree. Twenty-eight-year-old James Hart of Winterville, Georgia, grew up watching his father tinkering with custom trucks. It wasn’t long before little James was right beside his dad making sure the nuts and bolts were wrenched tight. At 15, James’ father brought him to a truck show in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and for the first time James fell in love. Although most 15-year-old boys experience their first love on a high-school crush, James found his in a spectacular Chevy machine.
James knew that once he had his license, he would own a nice Chevy truck on which he could put his own special touch. Four months before his 16th birthday his father found a ’97 GMC Sonoma during a work drive. He came home and told James about the truck and the two went to take a look. The perfect canvas for his creativity was born.
Photo 2/5   |   Chevy 383 Stroker Engine
James brought the new-to-him truck to his friend Paul Wagner who works at Twisted Wayz Fabrication where the stock front half was hit with RideTech tubular control arms, and Slam Specialties RE-7 airbags were mounted. A full tube frame from the firewall back was installed with an underslung back half on Slam Specialties RE-8 airbags. Two 2½-gallon tanks were mounted with two Viair 480s compressors. A 15-gallon fuel cell was added as well.
James and his friends Jerry, Brian, and Alan turned the focus to the exterior. For a touch of creativity, a ’97 Oldsmobile Bravada grille was added, and a ’98 GMC Sonoma bumper was installed. The front fenders were raised and the driver door was given the suicide treatment. The driprails were shaved along with the third brake light, door handles, and rear firewall. A full skin combo was added to the tail with a 10½-inch LED light on each side.
Photo 3/5   |   1997 Gmc Sonoma Rear Back Half
For a nice dose of giddyup, the boys at Gabriel’s Engines in Winterville, Georgia, added a SBC 383 stroker bored .30 over with a serpentine pulley setup with lots of chrome and billet added. A turbo 350 transmission was added along with a B&M shift kit. A set of 22-inch Helo Tease wheels were added to the GMC. A quick deep blue paint was sprayed just to keep it from rusting, but a full custom paintjob is on the way.
James named the project ICUH8TN to let people know that he was a force to be reckoned with on the show circuit. With numerous Under Construction awards under his belt, the completion is sure to get the competition’ attention. James has a special way of thinking outside the box, and we’re expecting to see something jaw dropping by the time he’s done.
Photo 4/5   |   1997 Gmc Sonoma Interior Under Construction
Inside the Build
Year/Make/Model: 1997 GMC Sonoma
Owner and City/State: James Hart; Winterville, Georgia
Club Affiliation: Xtreme Lowz petitioner
Stock front half with RideTech tubular control arms and Slam Specialties RE-7 bags all smoothed, full tube frame from firewall back, underslung back half, Slam Specialties RE-8 bags in rear, 2.5 gallon stainless tanks, two Viair 480s compressors, 15-gallon fuel cell
Engine: SBC 383 stroker bored .30 over, COMP cam, Billet Specialties serpentine setup, 670 Holley carburetor, shotgun scoop
Transmission: TH350
Rearend: Chevy 8.5 rearend, 3:42 gear, Detroit locker
’97 Oldsmobile Bravada grille; ’98 GMC Sonoma bumper; fenders raised 2.5 inches; smoothed firewall; suicide doors; shaved antenna, handles, mirrors, driprails, and third brake light; full skin combo out back with two 10.5-inch LED light strips; frenched tag box by Jerry Kesler, Brian Bowles, and Alan Treadwell
Wheels & Tires
Wheels : 22x9 Helo Tease
Tires : 255/30R22 Coopers
Photo 5/5   |   1997 Gmc Sonoma Rear Three Quarter



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