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1965 Chevy C10- The General

“Let’s Just Lower It a Little…”

Mike Alexander
Sep 16, 2019

"Let's just lower it a little with new wheels and brakes " These have probably been the famous last words of more builds than we could ever count here in these pages. You see, Ron Palmero bought this beautifully restored 1965 C10 and at first was just thinking of a few subtle changes to really make it his own. But the more Ron stewed (and read custom truck magazines such as this—we're a bad influence, and we know it), the more Ron wanted to change up his newly acquired resto truck.

This teal C10 was destined for greatness from the beginning, although they didn't know it at the time. Ron hooked up with Travis Zeigler at Zeigler Fab with a small list of "wants" that included lowering, wheels, brakes, and some interior upgrades. But the more Ron and Travis talked about what he was actually wanting, the more excited Travis became. By the end of the planning, Ron had mentioned another C10 as inspiration for this rebuild. Clyde, a beautiful Stafford's Garage build, happened to be mentioned more than once and after reviewing exactly what it would take to "go that low" and build a badass full custom interior like Ron had pictured, the plan had gone much further than just a simple lowering and wheel swap.

Photo 2/15   |   1965 Chevy C10 The General Rear

In fact, the first phone call was to the crew over at Roadster Shop, and Travis ordered up one of their full air ride Spec Chassis as the foundation for where things were headed. As you can see, it wasn't just a simple lowering job at this point. The beautifully restored C10 cab and bed would be carefully transplanted over to the new Roadster Shop chassis and would be slightly modified to fit the new Billet Specialties 22-inch Legacy wheels which Ron had chosen to compliment the classic lines and subtleties of his truck. Furthermore, a few more subtle body mods would take place to clean things up. This included shaving the gas filler to get the factory gas tank out of the cab (and would now use a custom Boyd tank housed in the Roadster Shop chassis) and added a filler neck tucked into the underside of the bedrail along with smoothing out the stake bed pockets. A little nip and tuck and the bumpers were sunk in a bit more. The one-of-a-kind engine bay would now include one-off inner fenders, radiator cover, valve covers, and air cleaner all handbuilt for a truly custom look that you wouldn't ever notice until the hood was popped. To make room for the new slammed chassis a modified Bed Wood Parts kit with flush billet rails would clean up the new bed floor and some trick touches like a set of jumper terminals and battery kill switch were frenched into the rear bed panel with removable panel to access all the air ride. The access panel itself was made out of a stepside tailgate panel with the Chevrolet stamped letters in it, which gives that perfect OE look whether the tailgate is up or down. Modern touches with a classic restoration is exactly what Ron was after with this rebuild, so the interior got a little wild as well.

Photo 3/15   |   1965 Chevy C10 The General Wheel

Teaming up with Sew It Seams in Erie, Pennsylvania, the inspiration started with Ron's Escalade. Ron showed Scott the interior on his Escalade and that's kind of where the general idea came from for a more modern and luxurious cabin. Ron picked out a few Relicate Leather colors and gave Scott some small ideas of what he was after but from there, they gave free reign to build an impressive interior that would suit the newly found stance and modern touches of "The General." Sew It Seams did what they do best and created a one-off interior, sound system, and ergonomic cockpit that could hang with the wildest custom-built hot rods, yet is still refined enough to cruise to shows both near and far. When Ron got his truck back from Sew It, he was absolutely speechless—mind-blowing work, on time, and as professional as they come.

Photo 4/15   |   1965 Chevy C10 The General Interior
Photo 5/15   |   1965 Chevy C10 The General Interior Seat

Overall, the rebuild is everything Ron had imagined and much more. The best part just happens to be the comments from the previous owner that Ron had purchased the truck from stating, "If I would have known they were going to ruin the truck, I never would have sold it to them." We can't help but laugh alongside Ron and Travis as this beautiful creation is far from ruined but rather the perfect mix of restored and custom, and it just doesn't get much better than that!

Photo 6/15   |   1965 Chevy C10 The General Engine

Inside the build:
Year/Make/Model: 1965 Chevy C10
Owner and City/State: Ron Palermo, Butle, PA
Chassis: Full Roadster Shop Spec Chassis with air ride: AccuAir management, Viair compressors, Boyd custom fuel cell
Shocks: Ridetech RQ shocks
Brakes: Willwood Aero 6 14.5-inch rotors and six-piston calipers up front and the Aero 4 14.5-inch rotors and four-piston calipers in the rear
Drivetrain:
Engine: 383 BluePrint stroker, Billet Specialties TruTrac front drive, Custom valve covers and air cleaner by Zeigler Fab, Custom 2.5-inch stainless exhaust with Black Widow mufflers
Transmission: 700-R
Rearend: Ford 9-inch custom-built, Moser Axles
Body/Paint:
Shaved gas filler, added a filler neck tucked into the underside of bedrail, shaved stake bed pockets, Bumpers tucked in front and rear, One-off inner fenders, radiator cover, valve covers, and air cleaner, Modified Bed Wood Parts kit with flush billet rails and added a trim piece to cover rear of the boards, jumper terminals and battery kill switch frenched into rear bed panel with removable panel to access all the air ride, Access panel was made out of a step-side tailgate panel with the Chevrolet stamped letters in it, matching the tailgate when it's up or down
Paint: Truck was already painted a PPG teal when purchased along with a full "stock restoration" with NOS trim and the works
Interior: Sew It Seams Interiors built, Relicate Leather in Timber Brown German square weave brown carpet, custom molded dash pad, custom made center under dash to house A\C vents and storage pocket, custom made lower center console with AccuAir controller mount and cup holders, bench seat made from scratch using modified factory frame and wrapped in solid and perforated leather, factory door panels were modified to add character and wrapped in solid leather with perforated leather inserts, custom purse to match truck for Ron's wife so he was "out of the dog house" for the build (smart man!)
Stereo: Retro Sound head unit, Retro Sound 4x6 coaxial speaker in the factory dash opening, JL audio C2 6x9 coaxial speakers with a 10-inch Rockford Fosgate P3 subwoofer in a custom molded speaker box behind the seat, amplified with a JL audio XD400 amplifier
Wheels & Tires:
Wheels: 22x8, 22x10; Billet Specialties Legacy 2
Tires: 255/35R22, 285/35R22; Yokohama, Pirelli
Special Thanks from Owner: Travis Zeigler at Zeigler Fab, Sew It Seams, Street Machinery, Lucky Strike, API Autobody

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