Disorderly Conduct: Night Train’s ’99 Pete 379
From a distance, Night Train Trucking owner Paul Voigt’s flattop ’99 Peterbilt looks like a nicely done black-and-blue reefer combo. The visor is big and low, the paint is slick, the stacks tall, and the trailer is painted and trimmed in mirrored stainless to match.
In the daytime, the color, chrome and stainless pop.
But it’s when the sun goes down and Voigt turns on the lights that the wow factor of this 325-inch wheelbase tractor and 48-foot ’04 Great Dane reefer is immediately apparent. The truck turns into a rolling LED billboard of creativity. It’s a light show on wheels.
Voigt can change the colors of the lights remotely, and they reflect off the trailer’s mirrored stainless bottom casting an eerie glow over every component and the road below.
Two small acrylic signs hang from the trailer that seem to make the words “Night Train Trucking Inc” float in space, while another piece of the same material makes “Built By The Boyz” below the lit outline of a Tommy gun leave no doubt about just who helped on the build. He even has an LED sign below the license plate that displays his sponsors or a message.
However, the truly one-of-a-kind touches are the fuel tanks for both truck and reefer; they have clear acrylic back ends with an LED light shinning into them from the top. The tanks are his side turn signals.
They weren’t planned to be that way.
“They started out as AlumiTank tanks that we took down to the boys at the Chrome Shop Mafia to do something special with,” says the St. Cloud, Minn.-based small fleet owner. “We started cutting a Peterbilt logo into the back of the first tank and it wasn’t going too well. It got kind of messed up.”
“In the process of trying to fix our screw-up one thing led to another and finally we decided to use two metal rings to hold a piece of clear acrylic plastic as the end cap,” Voigt says. “The beauty of acrylic is it won’t turn colors when the diesel gets on it. So it will stay nice and clear.”
Voigt, whose company runs seven other trucks hauling mail from Minnesota to California and Florida, says the CSM crew cut a small window in the top of the tank using another clear piece of acrylic and mounted an LED light there to act as blinkers. “The light shines into the tank and it lights up the inside,” says Voigt. “We did the same on the other fuel tank and the one for the reefer. People love it.”
Legal or not, it’s one bad-ass custom touch and part of Disorderly Conduct’s overall appeal. The custom interior and “warmed-up” 475-hp Cat 3406 are almost as impressive.
The 63-in. stand-up sleeper was cut down to a 48-in. flattop at 4 State Trucks using new Peterbilt caps – the cab inset with a moon roof.
Voigt then had Rockwood Products handle the interior, including switching out the stock 379 dash for a 359’s, installing IssPro one-off gauges with white faces and blue illumination to match the truck, also laying in Rockwood floor and wood trim throughout the sleeper cab. They even back-lit the pedals that have translucent inserts.
The engine is just as spotless and colorful as the exterior although it’s tough to beat the shine from this truck’s Accuride aluminum wheels, which are chromed inside and out.
“We went inside the ECM and did a bunch of upgrades to it,” says Voigt. “It’s now a legit 825 horses. Put on a bigger turbo, different manifold, and jet-coated all the exhaust so it doesn’t rust.” It looks good and runs strong. But Voigt says there’s a C18 waiting in the wings for a swap this winter.
What very few people know is exactly how he came to get this truck in the first place.
“My dad bought five of these trucks brand new in 1999 for the company. The trucks all have a million-two, a million-three on them. Two years ago he sold four and had one left. My brother bought it. And he started working on it,” Voigt says.
“All of a sudden his wife found out they were having their third baby. She started telling him that he needs to get rid of this show truck because it’s not in the budget anymore. He came over and visited me and we struck a deal: I ended up trading him my new pontoon boat for the truck. I ended up finishing the truck, and here it is.”