With catalogs filled with chrome, lights, and everything under the sun for Peterbilt 379 trucks, it has become increasingly difficult to build a classic long-nose Pete that stands out from the rest of the crowd. Cody Madsen (26) and McAllister Enterprises of American Fork, Utah, however, seem to have proven that you can still build a unique, cool, flattop 379 Peterbilt.
Driving for McAllister Enterprises, Cody had a rather simple beginning in the trucking industry. Cody has loved big trucks ever since he was a kid, getting bit by the trucking bug through his father, Lee Madsen, a life-long truck driver. Working as a laborer at the Sunroc truss manufacturing plant in Salt Lake City, his start in trucking was of very humble origins, learning the basics by moving trucks around the truss manufacturer’s property. The day after he turned 18, Cody went in for his driving test and earned his CDL. Once he was old enough to go interstate, Cody got a job driving for Monster Energy Drinks, hauling what was essentially a mobile bar and VIP room on concert tours. For a young kid with few ties to home, it was the perfect job. With a free ticket to all of the concerts and an exciting life on the road, Cody was one happy driver.
After several years on the road, however, Cody wanted something a bit closer to home. Taking a driving job at McAllister Enterprises, Cody started with a lot of dirt work, pulling mainly side-dumps around the greater Salt Lake metropolitan area. Along with running in and out of the dirt pits, Cody also began towing low-boys, hauling heavy equipment and machinery. McAllister is a small, four-truck operation run by Matt McAllister, with young Weston McAllister (who helped us get the truck ready for the photo shoot) waiting for his chance to get on the road, too. During this period, Cody’s truck became a well-known sight around the Salt Lake area, and although it may be a “company ride” Cody has certainly put his own personal stamp on this unique Peterbilt truck.
Painted canary yellow, like the other McAllister trucks, the rig started as a 2007 Peterbilt 379 with a 48-inch flat-top sleeper. Over the years, the truck has slowly developed into the understated, spotless ride seen on these pages. With an eye to “clean” things up, all of the exterior Peterbilt emblems have been removed from the truck, as well as many of the lights and the horns. Featuring seven flush-mounted “penny light” cab lights, the truck is also equipped with seven-inch Dynaflex flat-top exhaust stacks and a flush-mounted rear deck plate. The truck also features a 20-inch Valley Chrome front bumper mounted to a 12 Gauge Customs bumper lift kit, with a Valley Chrome rear light bar, as well. Other custom touches include an air-bagged front axle, allowing for a very low profile on the nose of the truck, also from 12 Gauge Customs, and a 12 Gauge visor, as well. The truck also has a set of polished double-hump rear fenders.
One very unique feature that the truck has that would easily be overlooked is its PTO system. Wanting to keep the clean look going, the truck does not have either an independent hydraulic tank or the traditional Peterbilt “split” tank, but actually has the hydraulic tank built into the passenger-side step box. It’s a small feature most would not notice, but it keeps the exterior of the truck that much cleaner. But, perhaps the feature Cody’s truck is best known for are the front fenders. Built to look like a Peterbilt Model 379X, the truck features polished “bicycle-style” aluminum front fenders. Always kept clean, it’s a defining feature of Cody’s ride. The interior is as equally understated as the exterior. Done in tan, the interior features polished gauges, switches and shift tower, Bostrom Wide-Ride mid-back low-rider seats, and many other products from Rockwood, provided by Hub City Chrome in Oregon (now a featured advertiser in the magazine).
Sitting on a 280-inch wheelbase, the truck has a long feel thanks to the small sleeper, but not overly long. And this truck isn’t all show and no go. Motivated by a 700+ horsepower ISX Cummins routed through an 18-speed transmission and turning 3.73 gears in 46,000-pound rear ends, the truck most certainly has the power (and gearing) to get on the heavier side of things.
Getting just as dirty as any other working truck out there, the truck has worked as a dirt hauler and a low-boy tractor, though Cody currently spends most of his time pulling the fleet’s most recent trailer addition – a 2011 Wilson 53-foot composite aluminum/steel step-deck with a California-legal sliding spread. Primarily pulling trailer parts and brand new (complete) pickup truck trailers, Cody’s truck can be seen running all over the Western United States. Like other over-the-road trucks, Cody’s ride gets pretty dirty at times, but he never lets it stay that way for long.
When not behind the wheel of his truck, Cody enjoys camping, getting out on the water, and four-wheeling. But, most of all, Cody enjoys spending as much time as possible with the newest addition to his family – his first son, Zane. He’ll be about five months old when this edition starts hitting the racks, and was a mere month-and-a-half old when the photos were taken. Happily married to his wife, Whitney Madsen, he would like to thank her for putting up with his trucking habit and for supporting him through the long hours and long trips.
Cody would also like to thank his boss, Matt McAllister, for, in Cody’s words, “funding his sick addiction” to trucks. Cody also sends thanks out to his father, Lee Madsen, who got him started in the trucking industry all those years ago (Lee still drives), as well as Jim “Higgs” Higgins at 12 Gauge Customs for helping him get all the chrome and custom touches for his truck.
We at 10-4 Magazine would like to thank Cody for his time and commitment to this article. Ever since we first told him that we wanted to put his truck in the magazine, he has been excited and cooperative from that point forward. As you know, at 10-4, it’s not just about the truck, it’s about the driver, too. We loved seeing the enthusiasm Cody had for getting this feature in the magazine. And, being such a hard-working, enthusiastic young man, we’re certain Cody Madsen has many more years of success in the industry ahead of him.