Boneyard Builds 1970 C-10 features a gear jamming, compounded turbocharged Duramax engine!
Launched in the fall of 1959, the 1960 model year C-10 introduced a new body style of a light pick-up truck that featured many industry firsts. Most important of these were a drop-center ladder frame, allowing the cab to sit lower, and independent front suspension, giving an almost car-like ride in a truck. Also new for 1960, was a new designation system for trucks made by GM. Custom C10 builds have become quite popular over the years but often feature LS swaps and airbag suspension. We have started to notice a trend lately that was prevalent at the last SEMA Show, DIESEL SWAPS! Brody got his first Duramax in 2009 and fell in love with the power and performance. Since then he’s been hooked on diesel performance, so naturally, this build would have to be diesel-powered. We bring you, Brody Stone’s pro-touring, 1970 compound turbo-powered Duramax C-10!
“This C10 literally fell in my lap. I was on the phone with a friend discussing his Pro touring GTO he just completed when he suggested my next project should be a pro-touring style truck. He suggested 67-72 models looked really cool. Since I like trucks, I googled pics of C10’s while on the phone and really liked the idea of building a truck but knew it would have to be different than the normal LS swapped C10.”
A few minutes after the phone call, one of Brody’s employees walked by his office and asked, “You know anybody who wants to buy my old truck?” Brody’s reply was, “What you got?” His reply was, “1970 C10”. It happened that easily. To top it off, the truck was all-original rust-free American steel.
Shortly after acquiring the C10, that same friend Brody was speaking with introduced him to Chad Whitlock at Boneyard Builds. Brody shared the visons he had for the C10 with Chad and he immediately came on board. “I wanted this truck to have a ton of power but also handle like a sports car.” After calculating the costs to modify the original frame and suspension or buying a ready to go frame, the turn-key option was more money, but worth it for its engineering and strength. After extensive research, Chad and Brody decided to go with Roadster Shop. “Roadster Shop Spec Series chassis are hard to beat for the money. The engineering and workmanship are top-notch, plus they have excellent customer support”, said Chad.
Heart and Soul
The complete build took over 9 months, but the main focus would be transplanting the modern drivetrain into the 1970 body. The engine was sourced from a 2013 Chevrolet 2500 HD (LML Series) that was purchased at auction. The original frame, motor, body trim molding, and interior was sold to help recover the initial cost of the truck. The rest of that truck was parted out or scrapped out to recover most of the cost of the donor. For horsepower, Chad contacted his go-to Duramax guy, Jason Wehrli at WC Fab. He specked out the turbos and built the twin-compound turbo set up in house. Adam Pela at DMAX Swap built a custom stand-alone harness for the setup and provided the initial tuning. The 6-speed manual transmission was purchased from Scott Schleck at Midwest Transmission. He made sure all the proper parts were cryo treated to help it survive the brutal torque of this compounded Duramax. South Bend and Spec Clutch helped with getting the power to the ground with a combination of parts to increase torque capacity and still keep drivability. Tuning this engine and transmission combination was a little different. LML series engines were always strapped to an automatic transmission. None the less, with the help of Adam Pela, Chad didn’t run into too many tuning issues.
Deadline SEMA Show
The engine/transmission swap was the most time-consuming part of the 9-month long build. “When you want to do a custom build like this, you have to get creative and of course, have a lot of patience”, said Chad. At this point, the crew knew that time was against them, knowing they needed it finished for the 2019 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Luckily, Chad had been doing his homework since the beginning of the build, sourcing out all the parts and materials needed to complete the remainder of the build. While he can’t say the rest of the process was a cakewalk, it was a change of pace from the driveline installation. Chad mentioned to us that picking the wheels and chassis was the easiest part of the build. This build meant a lot to both Brody and Chad by accomplishing a build nobody has done.