Chris Wilson of Tucson, Arizona, is no stranger to building custom vehicles. He rolls with the infamous Negative Camber crew and has built everything from street rods to street trucks, including a '28 Roadster, an '83 Ranger, and a '95 S-15.
Like any true custom enthusiasts, the last project wasn't even done before the itch to start a new one took hold. He'd been eye-balling square-body two-door S-Blazers for quite some time and decided one of these would be the next victim of his twisted imagination. He came across the perfect specimen in May 2002 and snatched it up for a paltry $2,200. This time around, he decided he would build a complete custom vehicle to showcase his talents and that of his own custom fabrication shop, Ruthless Customs.
As do most automotive enthusiasts, Chris began working out of his house with a few buddies, but rapidly outgrew the confines of the homestead. At that point, he decided he needed a shop, so Ruthless Customs was born out of necessity. Like any good custom shop, nothing speaks more about your talents and skills than does a rolling business card, and the newly acquired S-Blazer was it.
Chris initiated the buildup by mapping out a plan of attack. He knew that the Blazer would be a complete build, including a super-built motor and a pimped-out interior. Chris also knew that with the help of Travis Martin for the paint and bodywork, Ruthless Customs could build the entire Blazer in-house.
The crew started by tearing into the suspension. The guys installed a set of Belltech 2-inch drop spindles and 'bagged the Blazer all the way around using Firestone airbags. After they built the three-link setup for the rear and finished the rest of the suspension components, the crew at Ruthless powdercoated and chromed everything that could be unbolted. For rolling stock, Chris picked up a set of Eagle 18x8-inch rims to lay the truck out on, and then was ready to move onto the next step: the engine.
He knew that the engine would be the heart and soul of this beast and he wanted its bark to be as loud as its bite. Chris started with a 355ci small-block Chevy to replace the Blazer's tired 4.3L V-6. Since nothing says performance like twin Holley four-barrels sitting atop a huge polished tunnel ram intake sticking through the hood, Chris went old-school and bolted this combo onto the small-block. And while headers and dual exhausts would make the small-block bark, Chris also wanted a little extra performance music from under the hood, so the Chevy was fitted with a geardrive setup on the front of the engine. For looks, chrome and billet were used liberally throughout the engine compartment.
As Chris was building and detailing his engine down to the very last bolt with plenty of chrome and billet accessories, Travis Martin began to do the bodywork on the Blazer. He smoothed out the body seams and installed a roll pan to clean up the rear. Once the body was to their liking, Travis sprayed the truck with R&M's Hugger Orange for a bright, clean look.
With a chromed-out 420hp motor and a bright-orange exterior, the interior had to be just as amazing as the rest of the truck to keep with the super-clean theme. The crew at Ruthless stripped the inside down to bare metal and got to work. The guys threw the old dash out and swapped in a custom fiberglass version painted Hugger Orange to match the exterior. Dolphin gauges were mounted to monitor the engine's vitals and the air suspension pressures.
Who needs a hood when you...
Who needs a hood when you have a Tunnel Ram intake sporting twin Holleys atop a geardriven 355ci Chevy small-block?
The stock Blazer dash was...
The stock Blazer dash was replaced with a custom built fiberglass dash painted to match the truck. The dash is fitted with a complete set of Dolphin gauges. A Colorado Custom billet steering provides steering input.
Classic street-rod mirrors...
Classic street-rod mirrors give this Blazer an old-school hot-rod look.
An Optima battery was relocated...
An Optima battery was relocated to the rear to allow more room in the engine bay for the massive motor. It's mounted side by side with the air system's vital components.
This custom-made billet skull...
This custom-made billet skull shifter sits well above dash, Rat Fink-style.