(Words and photos by American Powertrain/Matt Graves) – Let me start off by saying all this is Greg “Snaps” Schneider’s fault. Greg works for Ridetech as owner Bret Voelkel’s special projects guy. It’s his job to keep the fleet of Ridetech project cars in fighting trim. I met Greg during the 48 Hour Camaro build back a few years ago at Ridetech HQ. He didn’t really know what to think of me then and probably still doesn’t but we hit it off and now I consider him a good friend. Greg has one of the sweetest Chevy C10 trucks on the planet. I fell in love
with his truck the minute I sat down in it. Every detail of the truck was perfect. The paint, the stance, perfect wheels. I never considered myself a truck guy but this truck brought back fond memories of driving around my grandfather’s truck before I was even old enough to get a permit. Something about the shear simplicity of these classic trucks just makes me feel all warm inside.
Most of us probably have a truck story from when we were kid about either our dad’s or grandpa’s hauler. Let’s face it, trucks are America. They are made in America and they helped make America great. No other country in the world (except Texas) has a love affair with trucks like we do. They are the number one selling vehicle here in ‘Merica. After seeing Greg’s truck and the potential a C10 has, I had to have one. I spent many a night searching for a decent 67-72 C10 but I soon realized a “decent” short bed C10 was not a cheap truck to find or to start a build. I finally gave up looking until earlier this year. American Powertrain we had just come out with the parts to put a 5-speed or 6-speed into a C10. I got to talking to Gray Fredrick, one of the owners of the company, and found out he shared my desire to build one of these trucks. So we decided to go in together and buy one. BUT we were both working on a typically wife limited budget.
Could we build a cheap C10 and make it Power Tour worthy on a budget? What parts are out there that we could use that wouldn’t blow our bank account out and get us divorced? The truck had to be cheap, dirt cheap, so we could throw more money at parts. Paint and body work had to be out of the equation because we all know that will always kill your budget. After more searching we found a few low buck trucks nearby. So we grabbed a trailer and found our 1969 “Cheap”-10 for a measly $2900. We soon found out we may have paid too much. As you know, you get excited about buying something and sometimes you sorta’ overlook important things like, say, the bed floor being completely rusted out and the motor having a dead cylinder. Greg will probably lose his lunch when he sees this truck.
Oh, did I mention we picked this truck up less than a month before Power Tour? Yep, with one month to make her start, stop and cruise over 2,000 miles, here are the upgrades we decided to do: