When we find a rig of serious show-truck caliber capable of taking on any and all Jamboree competition, we have to stop and take a closer look. Owner Ryan Price of Dola, Ohio, explains: This truck is not just for show. We go truck pulling as well. After stripping a few parts to lighten it up a bit, we just change the tires, and its ready for action.
This 81 K30 Chevy, commonly known as War Dog, was purchased in 1995 for $900. With the help of his friend Jason Wagner, Ryan completely restored this fearless rig from the ground up. First, he stripped the cab, bed, and front end of all the chrome. Next, the rusted areas were repaired and the cab and front end painted. Ryan replaced the doors, rockers, cab corners, and floorboard. The two front fenders and the hood came off a Chevy Suburban that was sitting in a local junkyard. New sides and a tailgate were swapped and attached to the original bed. Afterward, the truck was completely painted reassembled.
The next stage of the buildup was the massive motor swap. A big-block 502ci mill was transplanted with the help of Jason and is reported to bang out 450 hp with 515 lb-ft of torque. The big motors internals were left pretty much stock, and it uses a Holley 750 to feed the fuel. Exhaust exits through DynoMax ceramic-coated headers and full dual- aluminized 3-inch exhaust, which plumb Flowtech Terminator mufflers.
Underhood, electrical upgrades consist of an MSD coil, an MSD 6 AL ignition box with rev limiter, a Mallory Unilite distributor, and ACCEL 8.8mm wires. Two 1,000-amp batteries store the juice, and a 100-amp alternator keeps them charged. Coupled to the powerplant is a TCI torque converter with a stall speed of 1,200 rpm. Its linked to a TCI Street Fighter Turbo 400 transmission and tranny cooler. An NP205 gear-driven transfer case splits the power via custom driveshafts to a beefy Dana 60 frontend with 4.10:1 gears locked by Detroit.
Gobs of rear traction is made possible with a GM 14-bolt 10.5-inch axle, which holds a factory Gov-lock limited-slip differential. Axle trusses by Go Rhino provide a good amount of insurance for those moments when the Bow Tie gets airborne or yanks a huge load. Wrapped around Weld Roadhawk 16.5-inch polished-aluminum wheels are 35-inch Super Swamper Boggers. Stopping power is via 12.5-inch disc brakes in the front along with 13-inch drums at the rear.
Providing altitude (and attitude) for this proud puller is a 6-inch Skyjacker Softride spring kit supporting the front Dana 60 and 5½-inch blocks bolted to the GM Corporate in the rear. Jason fabricated custom shock mounts, traction bars, shift linkages, body lift brackets, and other miscellaneous parts underneath. A 3-inch Performance Accessories body lift allows for extra clearance. Four Trail Master shocks help smooth the ride, while a 2-inch drop pitman arm and Trail Master steering stabilizers help control side-to-side motion.
Exterior features include a chrome Warn brushguard and XD9000i winch bolted to the stock front bumper, chrome nerf bars by Smittybilt, and a 10-inch drop-V rear bumper with a Schuck cushion hitch. Ryan applied the custom spray job himself using Bahama Blue and Pearl White as his colors of choice.
The interior was left in stock condition with the exception of the killer tunes provided by a Clarion CD player with MTX 10-inch truck speakers. An Auto Meter Monster Tachometer sits up on the dash and helps keep the redline defined.
As you can see, the War Dog is more than just a fullsize wannabe. Its a well-built machine thats meant to cause problems for the competition wherever it goes.