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Diesels are a part of farm life. Nearly all of the implements on a farm are diesel, and most farmers utilize diesel trucks to keep their operation under one fuel type. So it stands to reason that a young farmer with a self-proclaimed “fetish for black smoke” would build a diesel hot rod out of a farm truck.

Such is the story behind Matt Youdbulis and his ultra-clean first-gen Dodge. The 26-year-old Plymouth, Indiana, resident claims “he always wanted to build a nasty first-gen Dodge,’ and with twin turbos and a built 12-valve, we think he’s accomplished his goal.

Such is the story behind Matt Youdbulis and his ultra-clean first-gen Dodge. The 26-year-old Plymouth, Indiana, resident claims “he always wanted to build a nasty first-gen Dodge,’ and with twin turbos and a built 12-valve, we think he’s accomplished his goal.

Starting with a clean 1991 first-gen W-250 Dodge, Matt went to work rebuilding the truck from top to bottom. First up was the suspension, which was left at stock height, but fitted with Skyjacker 7000 shocks and steering stabilizers, and a Borgeson steering box and shaft. Matt fabricated his own traction bars from chromoly tubing and Heim joints. Out back, the Dana 70s was fitted with a locker and 3:55 gears for hard launches with a Mag-Hytec cover keeping this pretty. Rolling stock on the rig consists of 10×17 Pro Comp rims fitted with 285/70R17 Pro Comp Extreme A/Ts.

The heart of Matt’s clean project is the 12-valve Cummins under the hood. The engine and trans were pulled from the truck with the long block being sent to Diamond Engine in Monticello, Indiana, for prep work. The bottom end was freshened and fitted with fly-cut pistons. A Hamilton 188-220 camshaft actuates Haisley Machine valves in the ported and polished cylinder head with titanium valve springs keeping the seal tight. Besides the port and polish job, the iron head was decked and fire ringed to handle larger-than-stock boost. Matt and Shea Locsi put the engine back together with ARP head studs and fasteners.

Behind the flawless first-gen grille is a Hogan intercooler.
Finishing touches include clear cab marker lights and a soft tonneau.
The compound setup utilizes as S-300 on top and S-475 below, all connected with custom paint-matched tubing.
Under the hood is one of the cleanest 12-valve, twin-turbo setups you’ll ever see. The engine makes upwards of 800 horsepower at 1,300 lb/ft of torque. There’s also plenty of color-matched tubing and AN fittings with stainless steel braided line.
For kicks, and 200 more horsepower, a Cold Fusion nitrous system was added.
A Cooler Tubz polished intake feeds the air charge into the engine from the Hogan intercooler.
On the inside, the truck is immaculate with new carpeting and a second-gen Dodge seat that replaces the original bench.
Driving atmosphere is provided by a Pioneer sound system.
Here’s something you don’t see every day in a diesel, a Hurst T-Handle V-matic 2 shifter mounted in a custom console that also houses three gauges.
A full complement of Auto Meter gauges keeps track of just about everything on the truck.


At all four corners are 10×17 Pro Comp wheels wrapped with Pro Comp Extreme A/Ts. Also visible is one side of the stainless MBRP dual exhaust.
Out back, the Dana 70s is fitted with a locker and 3:55 gears and gets additional fluid from a Mag-Hytec diff cover. Skyjacker 7000 shocks are fitted at all four corners of the truck.
Matt fabricated his own custom traction bars, which utilize Heim joints. Also visible is the filter on the A-1000 lift pump.

With the finished engine back in the truck, attention turned to aspiration. The truck is fitted with a clean compound turbo setup that features an S-300 on top, fitted with a race housing and billet compressor wheel, and a S-475 on the bottom, also with a billet wheel. The turbos are fed via a Stainless Diesel exhaust manifold with exhaust exiting the truck via an MBRP stainless dual exhaust system. Boost runs through a Hogan intercooler up front and a Cooler Tubz intake.

Fueling is provided by a modified P-pump with an A-1000 lift pump bringing fuel forward from the fuel tank. A set of J.L. Machine 5×18 VCC injectors provide plenty of fuel. And just for kicks, and the quarter mile, the truck also boasts a Cold Fusion 200-shot nitrous system.

To hold the estimated 800+ horsepower and 1,300 lb/ft of torque, a built 47RH replaces the original 518 Torqueflite. The overdrive trans was build by Mike Buntrager of Wakarush, Indiana, and is fitted with all the right stuff, including billet shafts and an 1,800-rpm Spec-Rite triple-disc torque converter. A NP205 transfer case splits power front and rear.

With the mechanicals out of the way, attention turned to the appearance side. Matt Elliot of Plymouth is credited with the body mods and applying the Viper White/Cashmere Metallic base coats to the truck, which are sealed via several coats of clear. On the inside, the dash and door panels were rehabbed and fresh black carpeting laid down before the seat from a second-gen Dodge was installed. Auto Meter gauges keep track of just about everything on the truck while a Pioneer sound system provides atmosphere. You’ll also find a Hurst T-handle V-Matic 2 shifter on the floor of the standard cab, something you don’t see in diesels.

All in all, Matt ended up with the truck he’s always wanted, one that’s guaranteed to turn heads and smoke tires wherever it goes. He also gives credit to Matt Elliot, Shea Locsi, Travis Herchberger and Johnny Gilbert for helping him make his dream come true. DW

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