“Blackie” – Travis Noack’s 1974 Chevy Cheyenne Super 10
Travis Noack’s 1974 Chevy Cheyenne Super 10 is a legacy truck. In 1974 Paul and Margie Sue Smith walked into Hallowell Chevrolet in Clovis, CA in search of a new pickup. They wanted to see what Chevy had to offer and the president of dealership showed them a special option dealer truck. It was a 1974 Cheyenne Super 10 shortbed with a special option big block and rare solid color package. At 3,202 miles on the clock the Smiths drove off in their brand new pickup.
For the next 38 years the truck was a daily-driven vehicle, used for towing a small aluminum boat up and down the west coast on fishing trips, hauling pigs for BBQ’s, and everything in between. In 1980, Margie Sue was driving down the highway when the hood flipped up and buckled over the roof. The dealer replaced the damaged hood with a brand new one, ever so slightly changing the face of the truck. In 1982 Paul and Margie Sue sat in another dealership contemplating a trade-in on a new Bronco. Margie Sue looked out at her truck in the lot and began to weep. The Smith’s walked out of the dealership and left in their old Chevy.
In 2012, after Paul’s passing, the truck was sold locally in Fresno – more heartbreak all around. Street Trucks Magazine Editor Travis Noack knew who had it and with some horse trading, brought the truck home. Travis is by no means new to the truck world. As a kid he was around his Dad’s ‘29 Ford Roadster pickup. In high school he got back and forth in his slammed ‘82 GMC shorty. After college he got into the magazine industry and for the next 14 years built and drove countless feature and cover trucks, including a ‘56 F-100 that earned Goodguys Truck of the Year in 2011. Even after all that, he finds the most happiness in the simple comforts of this ’74 C-10 he calls “Blackie.” It’s also known as the “Pork Chop Express” as you can see from the trick painted tailgate logo.
Since parting ways with the Smith’s the old pickup has maintained most of her original flair. The factory black paint has been kept up, but over the years has worn thin in spots, giving way to the elements with hints of patina, a little rust in the typical areas, and streaking near the fuel filler. Under the hood resides the original big block 454 with a TH400 backing it. Travis has made a few upgrades such as intake, carburetor, headers, valve covers, and a radiator with electric fans. The factory A/C blows cold and the comforts inside are what you expect from a truck. The addition of a vintage tachometer under the dash keeps track of the spin of the big engine.
Visual modifications to this survivor include a McGaughy’s drop kit and big brake upgrade, Black Widow mufflers, and a set of black, 18” Streeter Show Wheels wrapped with plenty of Nitto rubber to keep the ride smooth and the torque where it belongs. Tom Mcweeny put his skilled striping brush on the hood and tailgate, giving color to the monotone exterior.
Travis has no plans to change the truck apart from a fresh mill under the hood and some new material on the seats and headliner. To him, changing anymore would start to turn away from the historical value of the truck. He takes Blackie out every chance he gets; from running to the hardware store for a bit of lumber or driving it across state lines from Las Vegas to Scottsdale for Dino’s Git Down and Goodguys events.
Margie Sue Smith has since passed but her deep connection and love for the old pickup lives on with Travis. The truck she purchased at Hallowell Chevrolet in 1974 shares a name with late Courtney “Tito” Halowell, a close friend who mentored Travis in his professional career in the magazine industry. Fourty-four years, thousands of gallons of spent fuel, and countless stories attribute to a value that cannot be matched in dollars.