Sometimes you just need to break the mold and start over. As it gets harder to build a unique truck, Jade Transport out of Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada) continues to push the envelope and create amazing rigs that stand out from the rest. Case in point – their latest project – a bright orange Peterbilt called “High Anxiety” that has no stacks, no air cleaners, painted wheels, tons of billet, and carbon fiber pieces all around (inside and out). Customized in “tuner car” style by brothers Jonathan (see photo) and David Dyck, this truck, which was designed and built to help promote Jade’s fiberglass truck fender and accessories business called Shift Products, has not only broken the mold, but it has created a bold, new, one-of-a-kind look all its own.
Jade Transport Ltd. is a specialized liquid bulk hauling outfit based in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada) that is owned and operated by Larry & Kim Dyck and their partner, Greg Arndt. Started in 1969 by Larry’s father Jake and a partner named John, the company was originally called J & J Trucking. Jake bought John out early on, and then later renamed the company Jade Transport (which stood for Jake & Amy Dyck Enterprises). Jake got his start in trucking way back in 1935, hauling logs in Mexico. In 1952 he immigrated to Canada and then held several trucking jobs before starting J & J Trucking. Larry & Kim bought the business from Jake in 1984. Today, the company, which hauls all sorts of bulk liquids and chemicals throughout North America, has about 70 trucks and 150+ trailers.
All of Jade’s trucks are nice, and a select few of them are really nice. Knowing that drivers spend a lot of time in their trucks, Larry feels that it is important to provide all of his people with comfortable rigs they can be proud of. Every truck at Jade, like its driver, is unique – they have never built any two trucks to look the same. Jade is proud of the fact that any one of their trucks, if cleaned properly, could roll into a truck show and win. Most of the trucks in their fleet are
custom-ordered Peterbilts, and most of the tanker trailers, which can be heated while in transit, are stainless steel models made by Polar or Brenner. Some of the tanks are multi-compartment units for customers who need to manage different liquids at the same time. The company also does some general freight hauling on occasion.
Until the late 1980’s, Jade was the second largest bull-hauling outfit in all of Manitoba. But Larry, realizing that bull-hauling was “doing the impossible for the ungrateful” on a regular basis, sold off the entire division and shifted Jade’s focus to liquid bulk transportation. Since then, the company has flourished. Hauling products all across Canada and the United States, they have gone as far north as Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, and as far south as the Mexican border.
Larry Dyck (55) began working with his dad when he was no more than 12, greasing and washing trucks. He joined the company full-time right out of high school and has always enjoyed driving, particularly the tanker trucks that require special skills. As a young man, Larry admits there were times when he wanted to play rather than work, but his dad instilled a work ethic in him that remains today. Greg Arndt was one of Larry’s high school buddies. Greg was involved in his family’s gravel business, but he wanted to work in the office, so Larry hired him. Later, realizing his value in regards to finances and administration, Larry & Kim brought him in as a partner in 1991. These two men, Larry and Greg, compliment each other perfectly, and have become a dynamic duo at Jade.
Over the years, Jade has built some memorable, eye-catching trucks. Their first real working “show truck” was unit #57 – a green and orange 1987 Peterbilt 359 with a matching tanker trailer. Another one of their standout rigs is unit #188 – a green and yellow 2000 Peterbilt 362 cabover with two sets of dual exhaust and a totally-custom front bumper that lines-up perfectly with the truck’s flared fenders. Unit #199 – a dark green 2007 Peterbilt 379 Legacy with two dark red/orange “hooked” stripes (this was their first truck fitted with the carbon fiber fenders), has crossed the country several times, winning truck shows from coast to coast. Since then, they have added unit #214 – a lime green and black 2008 Peterbilt 389 called “Sublime” which has been to (and won) several shows, and unit #234 – a red 2011 Peterbilt 389 with vintage-looking white stripes they call “Starsky & Hutch” (Clint Moore featured this truck in his May 2011 article). It is hard to pick just a few, but these are some of the well-known Jade trucks running around out there.
Of all the cool trucks Jade has built over the years, none are as unique or memorable as their latest project – “High Anxiety” – seen on these pages and on our cover and centerfold this month. Getting their inspiration from the “tuner” style of compact street racing cars, Larry’s sons Jonathan (32) and David (27) designed and built (with lots of help from Robbie, Ben and Nathan in the shop) this rig to help promote their fender and accessory business, Shift Products. The truck started out as a standard 2007 Peterbilt 379 Legacy (#424) with a 70-inch standup sleeper and a 310-inch factory wheelbase, but over a two-year span of time, it was transformed into the unique-looking “tuner truck” you see here now. Utilizing extensive amounts of billet aluminum and carbon fiber, this truck looks like nothing else out there today.
Powered by a 625 hp Caterpillar painted matte black and an Eaton 18-speed AutoShift transmission, the boys, wanting to remove the external air cleaners, designed an innovative air intake system using hood scoops from a Subaru WRX-STI tuner car and K & N filters mounted inline inside of the intake tubes. Turning the hood scoops sideways and covering them with carbon fiber, the brothers mounted one on each side of the cab where the old air cleaners used to be. After removing the vertical exhaust pipes and then covering the gap with Peterbilt filler panels, two horizontal “weed burner” pipes were installed underneath the truck. Except for all the painted, polished and chromed pieces under the hood, the engine was basically kept stock.
Painted a custom-blended orange color with plenty of pearl made by hot rod builder Dean Fowler of Iowa, this truck really stands out. Wanting to emulate that tuner look, the top of the hood was painted matte black, and then matching vinyl stripes were added. The wheels, which have satin black painted centers and polished outside edges, are from a Mack truck. Purchasing four billet grille sets for a Ford F-450 pickup, the brothers cut them up and modified them to make a unique front grille. Using the leftover billet pieces on the front and rear bumpers (and a few other places), nothing went to waste. The front bumper, which is partially painted and partially chromed, was made out of two standard 16-inch tapered bumpers. The painted fiberglass drop visor is a one-off piece, the battery/step boxes have custom-fabricated covers with billet step plates featuring the Shift Products logo, and the fenders (of course) are Shift Product’s signature carbon fiber rear fenders, along with a set of custom carbon fiber front fenders (Shift does not make a carbon fiber front fender for the 379).
In addition to 8-inch fiberglass (cab) and aluminum (sleeper) extensions, “High Anxiety” has a host of small details that might easily go unnoticed if you don’t look closely. The mirror brackets came from 12 Ga. Customs, but some extra modifications were made to them (a light was molded into the arms), the headlights are super-bright LED units from the J.W. Speaker Corporation, and the hood ornament, which started out as a stock Peterbilt 389 emblem, was modified to sort of look like an original Peterbilt hood emblem. The marker lights on top of the cab are actually modified blinkers that usually sit atop the “old school” single-round headlights made by United Pacific. The guys were able to order just the blinker portion of the light, and then modified the bases so they sat properly on the curve of the roof. The billet aluminum fuel filler caps came from a Ducati motorcycle, the beveled exhaust tips are from a diesel pickup, and the air and electrical connections were all imbedded into the deck plate. As if all that was not enough, they also ground off all the visible threads from the frame bolts, then smoothed them out and painted them. To complete the tuner look, the truck was fitted with a carbon fiber spoiler on top of the sleeper and a carbon fiber “splitter” on the bottom of the rear light bar.
Everything inside the cab and sleeper, which was originally grey, was dyed or painted black. New black carpet was then laid down, and new black leather seats were installed. All of the dash panels and parts of the door panels were covered with carbon fiber, as well as the shift tower console and the center of the steering wheel. Some of the leftover billet grille pieces were used to decorate the shift tower and some of the speakers. Back in the sleeper, most of it stayed stock, except for a bunch of extra orange lights that were installed inside all of the cubby holes. There was so much done to this truck, it would be very hard to document it all.
Shift Products, which started in 2008, is an affiliate of Jade Transport. Currently, Shift offers fiberglass fenders, front and rear, with or without carbon fiber, for the Peterbilt 389, in addition to air cleaner light bars and exhaust shields. Shift’s carbon fiber fenders are super strong and lightweight (only 13.3 pounds each). All of Shift’s fenders, either with or without the carbon fiber, are made using a process called Resin Transfer Molding (RTM). This advanced system uses a two-piece mold (instead of just one). The material is placed between the two pieces, which are then pressed together, and then resin is injected between the molds. This process produces a superior product that is smooth on both sides. To learn more about Shift Products, visit their website at www.shiftproducts.com.
In addition to running Shift, Jonathan is also in charge of the Omega Truck Wash on Jade’s premises in Winnipeg. Opened in 2010, this is a public truck wash that has one wash bay and one polishing bay, but they are always very busy. They hope to move the wash off-site to a bigger and better location soon, but with all of the rules and regulations, that has proven to be a more difficult task than one might think.
Operating Jade Transport with strong faith-based values, Larry & Kim Dyck, who have been married since 1978, have passed those values on to their children, as well. Larry is guided by one of his favorite Bible verses (Proverbs 3:5-6) which says: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.” Jonathan and his wife Alison have been married for five years now and have two children – Emily (3) and Joel (1). Jonathan’s younger brother David and his wife Cate have two boys – Lincoln (2) and Macai (1). The brothers also have a sister named Robyn, but she is not involved with the company.
Jonathan and Alison are very active in their church and community ministries. Jonathan, who has never had a drop of alcohol his entire life, is a devout believer so he tries to be humble and not let all of these cool Jade trucks go to his head. On the back of unit #199, which he drives as often as possible, it says “The Offer Stands” on the back of the sleeper. Not wanting to be a pushy Christian, this is his way of getting his point across without being too forward – and it often opens up some great conversations with other drivers who are seeking the truth.
Through years of hard work, dedication, and honest service, Jade Transport has built a foundation of success. Shift Products hopes to build upon that foundation, not by reinventing the wheel, but rather the fenders that cover them. Finding the right balance of form and function is key to building a lasting legacy – and in this case, that “Legacy” just happens to be a bright orange Peterbilt called “High Anxiety” that has broken the mold and created a whole new style to help “shift” cool trucks into the future.