Owner-operator’s ‘Black out’ tribute rig gets closer to finish line

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Charles Timbrook’s Black Out rig front view
Charles Timbrook’s “Black Out” 1999 Freightliner got this custom grille treatment cut from scrap aluminum by local vendors pursuant to the intent to honor veterans/fallen soldiers with the truck. page through the gallery above for recent in-process photos. Check out the photos at this link to see where the rig was in Spring 2014.Charles Timbrook’s “Black Out” 1999 Freightliner got this custom grille treatment cut from scrap aluminum by local vendors pursuant to the intent to honor veterans/fallen soldiers with the truck. page through the gallery above for recent in-process photos. Check out the photos at this link to see where the rig was in Spring 2014.

A custom rig in progress got a little closer to its final form in recent weeks as West Virginia-based owner-operator Charles Timbrook put his 1999 “Black Out” Freightliner Classic in the VT Customs and Transportation shop in Waynesboro, Pa., adding full gangster fenders by Talladega in addition a load of work  he’s put in himself with other local vendors around his Martinsburg, W.Va. home base.

Ultimately, the finale for the truck will follow with (likely) black powdercoated stacks from Lincoln Chrome, a fresh coat of paint and extensive airbrush work for the back of the sleeper and custom deckplate Timbrook’s lately installed. Stay tuned. He’s hopeful to finish up with the exterior by December, after which he’ll hit the regional truck shows in Spring as he moves to the interior customizations.

Timbrook several years back with one of his former small fleet trucks, a 1982 Freightliner daycabTimbrook several years back with one of his former small fleet trucks, a 1982 Freightliner daycab

The goal: a final tribute to U.S. military veterans and in particular those who gave all they had in combat. It’s those individuals, in his words,  who “are the real heroes” in American today. “I pledge this truck to them.”

Former small-fleet owner Timbrook got rid of his other trucks a few years ago and today runs this unit just 65 miles (furthest trip) from his home base three days a week while he pursued the “Black Out” project. “I’ve been driving for 29 years,” he says, 20 of those as an owner-operator, and “the truck’s paid for.”

As I’ve noted before Timbrook hauls quite a bit of van freight for QuadGraphics; he’s likewise “doing a lot from Maryland Paper” lately, too. 

Custom deckplate work Timbrook laid down in his own shop with plans to have a local airbrush artist add along both sides of the deck all four military branches’ emblems. Along the top, then, an airbrushed likeness of the Vietnam veterans’ memorial, in addition to muraling on the back of the sleeper. “Once the truck is painted, the airbrush work will go in before it’s clearcoated,” he says. After that, “it will all be done” but for the interior.Custom deckplate work Timbrook laid down in his own shop with plans to have a local airbrush artist add along both sides of the deck all four military branches’ emblems. Along the top, then, an airbrushed likeness of the Vietnam veterans’ memorial, in addition to muraling on the back of the sleeper. “Once the truck is painted, the airbrush work will go in before it’s clearcoated,” he says. After that, “it will all be done” but for the interior.

Find more photos at this link to see where the rig was in Spring 2014.

Any Reliable Carriers-leased car haulers in the audience, c’mon?
This wouldn’t be the first time the auto hauler, known around the nation for its orange rigs, many of them owner-operator trucks with big sleepers and plenty of class. One of those made a cameo back in 2008 hauling a prototype Chevy Volt on the PBS Frontline series, and the company issued a press release recently that led with its appearance hauling this year’s “10 best” autos named by Car & Driver magazine. I managed to find the cover image in question, from the magazine’s January 2014 issue: 

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car-driver-cover-01 (2)Nice flattop. That yours?

“We’re honored to have been chosen to carry these amazing vehicles,” said Bob Sellers, Reliable’s general manager.

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