Just the good ol' boys; never doin' no harm." Waylon Jennings immortalized the "Dukes of Hazzard" for thousands of kids who grew up in the '80s with that little tune. More than two decades have passed since the General Lee first graced the screen, but the legacy of those dirt-road chases and Daisy Dukes' shorts is still thriving. We're not sure if you can actually classify someone from Lakewood, California, as a good ol' boy, but by the looks of this monstrous F-350, we're not going to give Leonard Lacey III too much grief about it. We'll call him whatever he wants because he's made one thing definitely clear: His F-350 is boss.
Leonard grew up around street rods and has had his hat in the custom-truck ring for more than five years. After building a lowered '72 Chevy pickup and owning a couple of standard 4x4s, he decided to take things out of the cookie cutter and build a new off-road truck that would reflect his unique design concept. Leonard bought the '04 Ford F-350 in August 2004, and in a little less then eight months, with the help of friends and associates, created something that most men will never have their hands on, let alone be able to build.
Since Leonard was calling the shots on this buildup, he decided to take a little different route. The project began with the bodywork. Leonard and his friend Colin Fletcher have the honor of claiming responsibility for most of the F-350's bodywork, which has been refined to add to the boss' presence. Starting with some essentials, the stock headlights were removed and fiberglass covers were placed to fill the original locations. A new set of APC headlights was relocated down inside the new fiberglass bumper. The original hood was also swapped out for a new Ram Air hood from Good Hood, which sits 6 inches above stock height. Fiberglass bulged front fenders sit flush with the higher hood and supply plenty of coverage for the new tires. Leonard also added rocker support bars on either side of the cab, and four 12-inch drop steps provide each passenger with ease of entry.
Once the body was ready, Leonard took the truck to Darren Shockey, who showed him the painting and sanding ropes. With a clearcoat down, Mike Schartel of Hesperia, California, also took Leonard under his wing, showing him the fine art of masking and covering the F-350 with House of Kolor Sunset Pearl Orange, Lemon Yellow Tangerine, and Purple Pearl clearcoat flames.
If a modern-day Bo and Luke chose an F-350 as their pony of choice, would they stay with stock height? We didn't think so. Once he saw the work of Roland Trudell at BTW in Azusa, California, Leonard had found his match. J.P. Thornton at BTW began the modifications with the addition of Atlas 18-inch leaf springs front and rear, paired with King 2-1/2-inch dual shocks. The front and rear axle tubes were braced with ladder bars at both ends, which pivot on 1-inch Teflon-coated rod ends and provide added traction as this hog rolls across the terrain. Most of the suspension components, including the ladder bars, spring perches, and shock-hoop mounts, were painted to color-coordinate by Darren Shockey in Hawthorne, California. With the new height demanding sturdier rubber, the truck makes its way on 15x16.5-inch Welds wrapped in 46x19.5-inch Mickey Thompson Baja Claws.
J.P. took a look under the F-350's hood and saw room for improvement. Using Rolling Big Power's Stage II 6.0L Power Stroke air-intake system and a 4-inch exhaust with 5-inch tip, the shop's crew ensured that the engine is ready to go wherever Leonard chooses. A 6.0L computer module was hooked up to monitor the power functions, which are viewable on a digital monitor. J.P. also handled the assignment of lengthening the driveshafts by 1-1/2 inches, ensuring that Leonard would never have to think twice about hitting the dirt.
As cool as it was, jumping into the truck through the window just isn't possible 18 inches above the ground, so Leonard took the interior a little more seriously. Eddy & Sons of Bellflower, California, pimped the F-350 with embroidered flame seat inserts sitting in copper-orange suede upholstery, with the same material used as trim for various pieces throughout. Showbound Customs in Hawaiian Gardens, California, added the aluminum bling on the taillights and diamond-plate in the door panels.
Leonard Lacey's F-350 may never see the backroads of Hazzard County. This engine may never have to cry with Rosco on its tail. The truck may never even leave the Sunshine State's asphalt byways. But that doesn't really matter. As Leonard said, "If you have a dream, you have to follow it." Who cares what you do with it? This proud owner thanks his friends and all the professionals who allowed him to sit in on every part of the buildup. Regardless of the F-350's destined path, this is one vehicle that might've actually stopped the General Lee and has already done Boss Hogg proud. Oh, and it will be "a little too much for the law to allow."