Now that we've all been briefed about Rene Martinez's state of mind and well-being in the feature on his '68 CST (page 20), we'll take another dive into his utilitarian psyche with a look at the 12th '67-72 Chevy to reside in his garage. Rene found this truck on eBay not too long after he bought what he says was the most beautiful truck he'd seen yet, an ultra-clean dark green and white '72 Cheyenne Super even his wife said he needed. Well, when the auction ended on this ochre and white shortbed before your eyes, it looked like he needed this one, too!
Number 12 arrived as a cherry original truck that just needed a polish and a lowering job. Remember the bit about Rene seeing a slammed mustard Chevy that got his wheels turning? After having a dozen of these things, he knows his way around 'em fairly well, and in the shade of the 1,800-square-foot shop he recently built in his backyard to better facilitate his habit, he buffed the stock paint and polished the original chrome with blinding results.
Rene got down and dirty with his buddies at Fat Fender in Fresno to rid the '72 of its nosebleed stance. They used parts from Early Classic Enterprises to bring the front down 3 1/2 inches, while the back came down a full 5 inches to lower and level the Cheyenne Super that much closer to the dirt. Other than that, the truck's underpinnings are as GM intended, with factory power disc and drum brakes capped with Boyd Coddington Hot Rod 8x10 and 10x20 wheels that give the Chevy that "just right" stance.
Inside the cab, the interior is 100 percent original, including the houndstooth upholstery. Like Rene's CST, this one has a fully instrumented dash panel with the factory tach, but unlike the CST, this has a tilt column that Kevin Hernandez at Kev's Classics freshened up. You'll also notice the factory air conditioning, which is a must in the sweltering summers of Atwater, California, and the Delco AM radio still tunes in with the best of 'em.
Under the hood might be Rene's favorite thing about this truck, a ZZ4 crate motor. Even with its Edelbrock 750-cfm carb, this puppy gets 19 mpg on the open road. The balanced and blueprinted 10:1 motor has a forged steel crank, powdered rods, and a .510-lift hydraulic roller cam that puts the ponies to the ground via a 700-R4 trans through the stock 12-bolt. The MSD HEI starts the fire that leaves through a 2 1/2-inch exhaust system with block huggers and Super Sonic turbo mufflers.
With the economy and comfort of a new truck but 10 times the cool factor, this one gets picked out of the bunch for cruising duties quite often. Rene loves leaving his buddies with similar trucks at the gas station while he's still got half a tank to spare. You can bet he's using the money he saves on gas for another C-10!