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Music City Trucks Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

The Outlaw Garage
Rockford Fosgate Audio Sound System
Cruiser Collection Bucket Seats

Episode Transcript

(Marc)>> You're watching Powernation!

(Marc)>> Today on Music City trucks our Low-Fi S-10 project goes out to see a specialist to get in tuned with the '90s with a fully custom audio system.

(Eric)>> Then we get an inside look at what it actually takes to design and build that system.

(Marc)>> Then we go pick it up and test out the system. And we were surprised at their attention to detail. [ Music ] [ engine revving ]

(Marc)>> This has got to be the most iconic design. [ Music ]

(Eric)>> Welcome to Music City Trucks. I'm Eric Smart.

(Marc)>> And I'm Marc Christ, and it's finally time to bring back our mini truck project. This is our Low-fi S-10 that we're building, and as you can see we're not in the shop because it's time to do some audio.

(Eric)>> And audio is way outside of our usual wheelhouse. So we're here at the Outlaw Garage in Columbia, Tennessee, to see an expert who can give us a hand.

(Marc)>> Let's check it out. [ Music ]

(Eric)>> Hello, you must be Joey!

(Joey)>> Nice to meet you!

(Marc)>> Nice to meet you Joey. Heard a lot of good things about you.

(Joey)>> Thanks for coming in. What can we do for you.

(Eric)>> We were hoping to get a little bit of help getting an audio system put in.

(Joey)>> We're all about that.

(Eric)>> Mind if we take a look around.

(Joey)>> We're a full custom audio shop. We do a lot of Rockford Fosgate product. Anywhere from the motorcycle stuff that we have here on this display. We also have back in the back a lot of the marine stuff that we do for the boats. We also have power sports too for side by sides, things like that. Let me just show you some of the stuff we have up here. This is our Rockford line that we do. We do have different levels of amplifiers that we can choose from depending on what you're wanting to do. I've got some different levels of speakers that we have from these guys also. Anywhere from a lower end all the way up to a high end, and anywhere in between that we can do.

(Marc)>> So we told you we have a project, didn't tell you what it was. It's a '95 S-10 mini truck. We were hoping that you'd be willing to take it on. Is that something that you want to do?

(Joey)>> I would love to be involved. We can go look at it and get an idea of what we can fit in there.

(Eric)>> Glad we found you cause we want this to be done right.

(Joey)>> We'll take care of you.

(Marc)>> Let's do unload the truck. While they're out there unloading the truck I figured I would check this thing out. It caught my eye. Looks like the entire back seat is removed permanently, and I don't think those are bookshelves in there. I think this thing's gonna be a pretty serious system. I need to ask Joey about this. Either way this is gonna be a really cool truck. Well this is it.

(Joey)>> It's a good platform to start with. We have done many of these trucks in the day.

(Marc)>> Let's just give you a little update on what the project is and where we're going. It is a mini truck. So it does have suspension. We've already installed the air suspension on the truck. It's got a full back half five link air suspension. It does have bags in the front with the shock mounts relocated as well. So it does lay frame. We're also going to later on do a tonneau cover, and wheels and tires, and that's pretty much it. We're hoping to connect the dots and bridge all that together with your help on the interior and the sound system.

(Joey)>> Any kind of ideas on what you guys were wanting to do stereo wise?

(Eric)>> So we had a little bit of an idea taking from the '90s mini truck style. Maybe like a blow through or something like that. Something that's gonna catch attention.

(Joey)>> That'd be perfect if you're gonna be doing the tonneau cover instead of having a camper shell on the back then we could actually do a cut through in the back. That would probably leave us a little bit of room to do some stuff behind it. We just need to get some measurements between the back wall and where you guys do have the fender well cuts so we can see what kind of depth we've got and come up with a box design for that.

(Eric)>> Sounds like you're gonna have your hands full. So we should probably get out of your way.

(Marc)>> We'll leave it with you. Thanks Joey!

(Joey)>> Thank you! Started out as an installer, but like I said I opened my own business back in '89. Obviously had to run the shop and do installations. Still like being the installer. I don't like being the salesperson as much cause I like getting my hands dirty. Through the '90s was just phenomenal for car audio for us. I think the industry itself was that way. It's crazy now. Here we are 2023 and mini truck season has blown up huge. We're seeing a lot of that old stuff coming back, which for me I love it because it was what we were doing and we were in it as that stuff was coming out. We as a company want to be known as doing the older stuff. When we first talked about the truck I knew y'all were gonna be doing an air ride system on it, and you were gonna do the tubs and all in the back. So we started looking at the blow through setup. I got to looking at playing around with some of the parameters that we were left with. Instead of doing a huge cut through and having all the speakers mounted we went back to the band pass design I was talking about earlier. We've got a three chamber box basically. We've got woofers in two sealed chambers firing into a common chamber, and then we cut a huge hole in the middle of the bed and it's right dead center of the truck. So this way because we're going bucket seats in the truck that kept everything right in the center to give us some room to put the amplifier still on the inside of the truck. The way you guys had laid out the tanks, and the bags, and the pieces in the back I wanted to keep all that showcased like it was and not have our stuff all mixed in the middle of it. So I decided let's put our amplifiers inside and put them behind the seat.

(Marc)>> Coming up next, we check in our Low-Fi S-10 project and give you an update on the progress.

(Joey)>> We did get the box built.

(Marc)>> Well it's been a few weeks since we stopped by Outlaw Garage to check in our Chevy S-10 build. So we decided to stop by and get a progress report.

(Joey)>> Hey guys, how's it going?

(Marc)>> We're just checking on the progress on our truck here.

(Joey)>> We got a few things done since the last time you guys were here. What we started with back here in the back where you guys already had all the air ride stuff going. I know you wanted to put the screen back here in the back. So we actually made a little pod that we could actually put the controller in. It'll be secured down right here. We got all the wiring run down through the bed to keep everything clean and uniform back here in the back and out of the way. We did get the box built. We came up with a design for two 12s and a band pass. This is actually a piece of plexi-glass, which right now I've still got it covered. We've actually got three chambers. There's a 12 on either corner firing into the center, and as you can see we've actually got the port already cut through the back of the wall. We've already done all the mating and stuff underneath the carpet and all the way up the back wall. Got the factory panel back in. Right now we're getting ready to work on the back panel. I've got the head unit in and it's kind of a good thing you guys are here cause I've got some questions about doing this back panel and how we're gonna cover everything.

(Marc)>> What you got.

(Joey)>> I wanted to find out from you guys if we're gonna do the color. If we're gonna be staying with the colors we've got on the inside. That way I can figure out with the panels being made I've got some inserts that we can do that we might can use some of those same colors in.

(Marc)>> Well that was one of the big things that we tossed around was were we gonna change the interior over to full black, or a completely different color, or stick with the beige. That's just so much work trying to change the entire interior color. Maybe we can embrace the beige and then tie in the black. We'll get some black seats and use both colors.

(Joey)>> Let me show you what we've got. This is actually the back panel. I've already started on it. We're looking down at it right now. This is actually behind the driver's seat, this will be behind the passenger's seat.

(Marc)>> I see, this is where the hole comes through.

(Joey)>> What we've done is I came in and made another insert piece here that's gonna go at the top. This will all be attached to this panel. It'll be all vinyl wrapped. Then we'll actually have these two pieces I've actually done with acrylic. So the amplifiers will be mounted on this but they're slightly larger than the amp. So you'll actually see from having a back light on the back this'll actually light up on the corners. This is the actual piece of plexi-glass here. At this point all we'll do now is go back and sand and polish the edges. That way the light will transfer out the sides.

(Marc)>> That's fancy!

(Joey)>> We have to attach this back wall to the back and keep it from vibrating. So I had to make some access places for some screws to go into the little pods I made. So by putting these inserts in here we can actually bolt this piece in. Then we'll actually have panels that we'll actually have and we can do these in the actual color of the tan. That will bring the tan material color back into this so it's not just all black back here in the back. It'll give us some of that goldish color to go in, and then these panels will be pressure fitted in. So if we ever had to surface anything you don't see any screws anywhere. Everything's completely hidden. Panels will pop out. You pull the screws out, and work from there.

(Marc)>> So it's gonna look good, it's gonna function well, and it's gonna be easy to service if you have to. So I think that's really cool how you're using the lighting, and the plexi-glass, and you've got things like this is gonna be floating almost?

(Joey)>> It'll look like they're actually floating. This will be painted black. So you really won't see these. Just now if you're looking down you don't see them, but once everything's blacked out it's really gonna be dark. When that light comes on it'll really just reflect around it. Having the back on the background it'll reflect the light better than having the goldish color back here. That's why I figure we tie in those on the accent pods. Now we've got all the new l-e-d lighting out. It's all more efficient, wiring's a lot smaller, wire's flexible now. We can actually bend the lights around stuff. So it gives us a lot more opportunity to do some stuff with lighting that we couldn't even do back then.

(Marc)>> I couldn't even imagine this kind of stuff, much less execute it, nor do we have the tools. So this is why we brought it to you. I guess we'll leave you with it, get you some upholstery, get you the seats, and we'll leave you to do your thing here. Looks like you've got a good grasp on this. Thanks Joey! See you soon!

(Eric)>> Next up, our sound system is nearly complete, and Joey gives us some insight into his process and a history lesson into this part of the industry.

(Marc)>> We're deep in our Low-fi Chevy S-10 project, and Joey from The Outlaw Garage is making great headway in getting our top notch audio system installed.

(Joey)>> We got our box now. We ended up cutting our panels back shorter just to box everything in and still expose all of the back end work that you guys did at the shop. Did the plexi-glass window where you could see down in the top. Obviously the box is ported in the back. We made some different inset panels. So now we can go in to service it. The panels will be removeable where we can take them out. We did three different pieces just to make it a little bit simpler versus trying to bow a big panel to go back in the back. We also added this front piece here that if you can see in the writing we will actually have your logo in just like we have on the top. Then we've also come back and we're gonna add one more ring inside this that we will actually cover with a tweed material like it's on the back of the amp wall to tie in the colors that we're doing. We'll possibly even do the same thing back here on this back side where the logo is. Now the box is all complete. So now it's just a matter of taking the pieces back out, putting some leather on them, and putting them back in.

(Marc)>> The Outlaw Garage installed a PMX-80-H head unit that they got from Rockford Fosgate.

(Joey)>> I like this piece because it's just a simple radio. This piece would work perfect because it still does Bluetooth. We can still plug in u-s-b and still play music the same way. It still even has a backup camera input on it, but at the end of the day it has a good output and sounds good. And to watch all those things still change throughout the year but then you're still dealing with a line that started over 40 years ago. In the doors we're gonna do the Power series six and a half. Still not their top of the line speaker but it is one of their higher end line coaxial speakers that we're putting in the door. [ Music ] We're doing a four channel amp to drive all those four speakers. We're gonna have plenty of power to drive them. I still want a good even flowing sound to where it still has a good mellow tone. If you want to play rock you can. If you want to play rap it'll play rap. If you want to play old Merle Haggard country it'll still play that, and that's what we tried to instill in this build is try to do something that still sounds really really good but we didn't have to put a ton of stuff in there to do it. That's the whole thing I wanted to do behind this without going crazy with a lot of equipment but build something that can still do both ends of the spectrum if you want to call it that.

(Marc)>> So we asked Joey where he sees this industry heading.

(Joey)>> The '90s was probably the biggest for car audio to ever be out there.

(Eric)>> We've got some mini trucks in here.

(Marc)>> Yes sir!

(Joey)>> So I really feel like what the mini truck series is doing, mainly the mini truck because that just seems where the focus is right now. It is still in the game to this day making product that still will do the same stuff that it did back in the day. [ Music ]

(Marc)>> We all know there's c-n-c machines and 3-D printers out there. So why does Joey still mostly do it by hand?

(Joey)>> My grandfather was a wood worker, and he loved working with his hands. I did mechanic work as a kid growing up before I got into this. I just liked building stuff with my hands because when I get through I can say hey, I built that. I used to build boxes with a jig saw. I just love working with a jig saw. [ saw buzzing ]

(Joey)>> But I like to build stuff like that. I like the sanding, I like putting it together. If we want to build a template now we can go in with a router and we can copy that template. We can copy that template 200 times and they're gonna be exact.

(Marc)>> You've been doing this for over 40 years. What keeps you going Joey?

(Joey)>> I guess just my passion. I just like doing what I'm doing, and as long as when the customer picks it up and they're tickled with it that's the payoff for me.

(Marc)>> We partnered with TMI products, and they stopped up and provided us with the vinyl fabric that we used on our stereo components. [ spray gun hissing ]

(Marc)>> As well as their Cruiser Collection bucket seats. Now these are a nice upgrade if your factory seats are in disrepair, or if you want to step up to a sporty seat that's affordable. Very impressive!

(Joey)>> Just finished up the inside. Got the TMI seats put back in. Everything's all buttoned up, ready to go, level, works like it needs to. Now we're on to the back. I've got a couple of small details we're gonna change up back here in the back before the guys pick it up. When they get here Monday to pick it up everything should be ready to roll.

(Marc)>> Coming up, our S-10 audio system's install is complete. Wait 'til you hear and see what they did. It will blow you away!

(Marc)>> Well this is a very exciting, big day for us because today's the day we get to pick up our truck.

(Eric)>> Joey gave us a call and said he's got our audio system done. So let's check it out.

(Marc)>> Joey how's it going?

(Joey)>> How you doing? Good to see you!

(Marc)>> We're glad to be here.

(Joey)>> I think we've got you guys ready to go.

(Marc)>> I was hoping you'd take all the bedazzles off.

(Joey)>> I thought leave it cause it's kinda cool looking!

(Marc)>> Let's see what you've done.

(Joey)>> Let me show you what we've done on the inside so far. We got the seats and all in from TMI. We got all the speakers in, the head unit in. We did a console piece in the center with a factory piece. We actually mounted the controller for the air ride system on there and the bass knob is up in the front where you can actually get to everything pretty easy. Then we've also got...

(Marc)>> Wow!

(Joey)>> All the amps are mounted on the back wall. We added some plexi-glass with some lighting. You can see the center's actually where the vent is for the sound to come from the back into the front.

(Marc)>> It looks factory. It looks like it's supposed to be there.

(Joey)>> We tried to keep it clean and simple. Not over the top, but something that would still blend with the seats, still stand out with what we're doing.

(Eric)>> It looks awesome!

(Joey)>> Let me take you back here to the back and show you what we've done back here. Remember on the air ride system we ended up making the little controller piece because that's the Bluetooth controller for the air ride. So we've got it mounted back here in the back, secure. Everything's tied down. Outside of that we've got a little surprise for you on the box that we did. If you can see this.

(Eric)>> That is awesome!

(Marc)>> That is too cool!

(Joey)>> We went ahead and did the blow through, and we did the glass on the top with the Rockford logo since they're one of the sponsors and giving us some of the equipment stuff that we did. We wanted to tie something else in the back and I wanted to put your guys' logo on there. I started playing around with a few things and I'm look, we've got a little picture window back in the back. We're gonna add some Hot Wheels back in the back. If you notice we've got a mini truck for the S-10. We've even got the Fall Guy truck that you guys just did on one of your episodes. Then I know you like old school trucks. We put an old school truck in it.

(Marc)>> That is so cool. Definitely not what I expected.

(Eric)>> Never seen anything like that.

(Marc)>> I don't know what to say.

(Eric)>> This is better than I could have ever dreamed it.

(Marc)>> This is why we brought you the truck.

(Joey)>> Got one more thing for you too. Like to never found it but we finally one little S-10 pickup, and we thought since you guys were gonna be doing the paint job and maybe doing some graphics and all on it you might could even have the truck painted to match the truck. We thought that'd be cool to go with it.

(Marc)>> That's cool! Maybe we should just paint this truck purple to match.

(Eric)>> I mean we've got to see how it sounds now.

(Marc)>> Let's do it. [ Music ]

(Joey)>> We've got the head unit up here at the front. Your u-s-b is actually mounted in the console. You can plug a thumb driver, plug your phone into it. We've got it set now. So if you want to start hit the little play/pause button and turn that volume on up. Keep on going! Get on up to about 25. Now take your bass knob and turn it up.

(Marc)>> The bass is turned down?

(Eric)>> Whoa! [ deep bass music ]

(Marc)>> Oh my gosh.

(Eric)>> This is insane! [ deep bass music ]

(Marc)>> I'm amazed by how crisp and clean it sounded.

(Joey)>> Just having six speakers, four mids and highs, and two subs it's really, really clean.

(Marc)>> It's a nice blend. It's not overwhelming bass. The bass is insane but it balances out. You can still hear the music, and it doesn't rattle or shake.

(Eric)>> With that blow though we ain't even gonna need a/c in this thing! Just turn the bass up! Everything that you did is just awesome. You've got the air controls in here, the bass knob, the head unit. Everything you did in the back, it just looks amazing.

(Joey)>> We appreciate it. We wanted to do something kinda cool for you guys, and I think it turned out really good.

(Marc)>> Joey I can't say enough good things about it. Knocked it out of the park.

(Joey)>> We really appreciate you guys inviting us to do this with you guys. It's been a pleasure for us!

(Marc)>> I guess we're gonna have to get this thing loaded up and get out of here soon.

(Eric)>> We've got to get it back to the shop and get it ready for shows cause we've got to show this off.

(Marc)>> Let's jam out a little first. [ Music ] I cannot wipe that smile off my face. That's too good! Let's get this thing aired up, and loaded up, and get it back to the shop.
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