Klouzek's tapered 1/2-ton
When Matt Klouzek set out to modify his '97 Dodge Ram, he gathered ideas from previous Top Truck Challenge competitors. "Stan Prueitt's T-Rex was my inspiration for building a Dodge Ram and Brad Austin's Blue Beast was my inspiration for narrowing the bed," Klouzek says. After integrating these and many more ideas, this rock-ready Ram was born. Klouzek's next goal? Compete in Top Truck Challenge.
Up front, there's 10 inches of lift generated by a pair of Full Throttle suspension coil springs with custom long arms and 14-inch-travel Full Throttle shocks. The tie rod and drag link are made from beefy 1.5-inch-diameter, 0.250-wall DOM tubing, and 0.750-inch spherical rod ends which are screwed into the ends of each. A Tom Wood's driveshaft feeds the open Dana 44 from the stock transfer case.
Custom Alcan Spring leaf springs (on custom flipped shackles) generate the 10 inches of rear lift, and a pair of Full Throttle shocks are on damping duty. The differential in the Chrysler 9.25 rear axle is welded to improve traction. A set of 42x15.0-15 Super Swamper TSLs on Rockcrawler 15x10 wheels reside both front and rear.
Owner: Matt Klouzek/Grand Junction, Colorado
Vehicle/Model: '97 Dodge Ram 1500
Estimated Value: $30,000
Type: 5.9L V-8
Aspiration: Fuel injection, dual exhaust
Output, hp/torque (estimated): N/A
Transfer case: Stock
Front: Full Throttle 10-inch-lift coils, custom long arms, Full Throttle 14-inch-travel shocks
Rear: Custom Alcan Spring 10-inch-lift leaf springs, custom shackles, shackle flip, Full Throttle 14-inch-travel shocks
Front: Dana 44/Open
Rear: Chrysler 9.25/Welded
Wheels: 15x10 Rockcrawler
Tires: 42x15.0-15 Super Swamper TSL