MAGMA
Street Trucks|October 2021
Fantastic the First Time
CHRIS HAMILTON
CONQUERING A SELF-SET CHALLENGE IS A REWARDING AND SATISFYING FEELING THAT ONLY A FEW GET TO EXPERIENCE. Long term, money sucking projects are tough obstacles that cause many to give up. But it takes more than that for diehard, determined guys like Howard McDaniel throw in the towel. No matter how hard or how much, they figure out a way.

So, when the time came for a new longterm, hair-pulling project for Howard to tackle in his free time, a custom built, highly modified Chevy dually truck kept creeping into his thoughts.

“I’ve always wanted to design a crew-cab dually, but I wanted my build to set myself apart from the rest,” says Howard, a police officer in Lufkin, Texas.

Starting with restyling the rear of this ’07 Chevy Silverado, the factory short wheelbase bed was modified to hold a set of ’07-’14 Chevy Silverado 3500 dually fenders. A custom built back half section replaced the rear of the OEM chassis, which utilizes a triangulated rear four-link and Air Lift Performance airbags. The original rear axle was removed and replaced with a 14-bolt Full Float rear axle from a ’96 Chevrolet k2500, which connects to the GM 4L80e transmission with a split drive shaft and a Summit yoke. Some 4:10 rear axle gears give it the perfect gear ratio for all types of driving, and custom coolant lines keep the transmission at the correct temperature. TCI Internals and a Nelson Performance 4L80e Harness were the final puzzle pieces for the conversion to be complete. This was the first time Howard performed a half-ton to three-quarter-ton conversion, which taught him some lessons along the way, and luckily, he had some help from good people like Woody’s Transmission in Huntington, Texas.

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