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Some of you may remember the bright yellow imron paint on the wild-looking '57 Chevy. We featured it on the cover of our "Old Iron" issue back in February of 1992. For the record, yes, that is the same bright yellow paint from last time, but that's where the similarities stop. since that photo shoot, Maurice Rozo, owner of Off Road Unlimited in Burbank, California, has torn the '57 Chevy down to the frame and refabricated it into one of the baddest and most functional old iron truck you will ever lay eyes on. Nothing on this truck is wimpy. From the motor to the axles, it is all the real thing.
     Maurice started the rebuild by removing everything from the "old" truck. It was down to the frame for a gound-up rebuild. Off Road Unlimited acquired and strengthened a chassis from a '76 Chevy pickup to fit the '57 body, new 700 HP blown motor, and trick suspension system.
     Speaking of horsepower, Maurice had Burbank Speed build a 454cid L-S6 Chevy bored .030 over and fitted with 7.5:1 Ross Racing (Hawthorne, CA) pistons, Crane roller rockers, two 750 cfm Holley double-pumpers, a K&N air cleaner, custom headers, Flowmaster mufflers, and MSD ignition system, a Griffin radiator, a Mallory fuel pump, Earl's fittings and braided lines, a BDS blower cam, and a 6-71 BDS supercharger to top it off! Two trick Optima spiral-wound gel-type batteries were then installed to light the fire-breathing beast upon command.
     The motor was first tuned by Bob Lambect Enterprises (Chatsworth, CA) on his engine dyno and then the final tuning in the truck was done at Hi Tech Marine (Simi Valley, CA). The big-block produced 706 horsepower on the engine dyno with the combo!
     John Kilgore of John Kilgore Transmission (Burbank, CA) then modified the Turbo 400 tranny with a 3500rpm stall converter made by Continental Torque Converters (Inglewood, CA). An Earl's cooler was then installed to keep the combo cool--mandatory in the situation. An Art Carr shifter clicks the tranny trhough the gears and delivers the power to an NP205 transfer case and into custom driveshafts made by General Driveshaft (Monrovia, CA). Up front, you will find a Dana 60 axle equpped with a Power-Lok diff and 4.88:1 gears. Maurice chose a 14-bolt Corporate full-floating rear axle equipped with 4.88:1 gears and a Detroit Locker diff to deliver the power. John Boubel of Off Road Unlimited trussed the rear housing with chromoly tubing for strength.
     Then it was on to the suspension. Boubel got together with National Spring (Santee, CA) to build a set of leaf springs for the wishbone-type suspension system that he was going to fabricate. The '57 body site on a 1976 Chevy pickup chassis and all existing spring perches were used, but the rear spring hangers had to be lengthened six inches to accommodate the 15 inches of rear suspension travel! The truck boasts nearly twn inches of travel in the front as well. Two Pro Comp shocks are mounted at each corner to keep the movement under control.
     Up front, a very thick hydraulic ram-assist unit built by Lee Manufacturing (Sun Valley, CA) give the driver a smooth, consistent feel to the wheel, no matter what the big 39.5-inch TSL Super Swamper Boggers and Weld Racing rims are traversing through.
     In the interior, you will find Auto Meter gauges, a LeCarra steering wheel mounted on a steering column out of an '89 Chevy, the MSD unit mounted under the dash (for protecftion from the elements), and a Simpson safety harness system to keep the occupants safe.
     As you can see Maurice has indeed constructed an awesome old-iron machine. It is good looking, functional, and a true reflection of the king of craftsmanship and work that he and his shop perform.
     For further information about Maurice, his '57, and why we call him Dr. Roost, contact Off Road Unlimited at 818-563-DIRT.

This is the kind of fabrication that Off Road Unlimited typically cranks out of their Burbank, California, shop. Over 15 inches of rear wheel travel is achieved with this wishbone type setup.

Up front, a trick hydraulic ram-assist power steering unit built by Lee Manufacturing gives the driver a smooth, consistent feel at the wheel and helps tame the big 39.5-inch Super Swamper Boggers on Weld rims.

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For the past 18 years, Off Road Unlimited has been manufacturing off road parts that set new industry standards. ORU creations have graced the covers of both national and international trade publications. As recognized "Experts" in the truck & SUV field, ORU regularly appears in technical and feature articles.

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