This month’s creation was ordered and built for my good friend Nick Baudino (44) of Verona, IL. Nick was featured back in May of 2012 with his last build – a cool black and green Peterbilt 389 – that also ended up being featured on a 10-4 Magazine shirt back then. That last one mentioned was a special build called “Nick of Time” and it was just barely finished in time to make the Louisville truck show that year (the name turned out to be very fitting). Well, after 780,000 miles it was time for a change, and he (like everybody else) wanted to get a new 389 before they were done, so here we are.
Nick graduated early from high school and then went straight to trucking (as soon as he turned 18). Hauling agricultural products in and around Illinois, Nick’s first truck was a 1993 Kenworth T450 with a 3176 Cat. After that, he had several Kenworths and Peterbilts, and then in 2012 he ordered his first truck from me after his cousin Eric Baudino had ordered one from me, as well (featured in May 2009). That truck was the aforementioned 2012 Peterbilt 389 painted black with green and white stripes.
Never a dull moment, it is amazing how time flies. These days, Nick is kind of a jack of all trades. Not only does he truck, but he also helps with the road commissioner, is involved in a campground, does county work, is on the local fire board, and even helps out on the family farm. Married to his wife Kelly for 15 years, they have a daughter Jada (18) and a son Liam (11).
After the green and black truck, he decided that he wanted to do black and blue for this one. The truck is a 2024 Peterbilt 389, built in 2023, so it is one of the last ones. Powered by an X15 Cummins with 2,050 torque, an 18-speed transmission, a modest wheelbase, LowAir, a car-hauler front axle, and low profile 24.5 tires and wheels, the truck was ordered all black. After it arrived, Mike and the shop did a body drop and then re-skinned the passenger door, removed the shocks from the sleeper and hood emblems, and then Pat the painter laid out some cool blue stripes with green outlines to tie in some of the green from the past build (plus it looked cool). Burying the stripes in many layers of clear so you can’t feel the edges, the truck then went back into Mike’s bay to be finished.
The truck got five even cab lights, a new bumper, and a 379 stainless grille with 13 grille bars. Tyler and Cody shaved and welded up some 379 double-square headlight buckets, added dump valves to the steer axle, hid the DEF tank, and painted the fuel tanks. It also got breather panels and lights, 12 Ga. mirror arms, and stainless box covers with the last four billet step plates in existence from Billet Details (Chris retired many years ago and shut the company down, but I was able to find four of them). The truck also features straight dummy stacks, cab and sleeper skirts, a smooth and flush painted deck plate, Shift rear bicycle fenders, and a rear tail box from Bub. Randy at Spare Time Fab sent us some black and blue door panels for inside.
KC Peterbilt did not get an excessive amount of 389 slots for 2023, so all of these last ones are special, and I am super happy that my friend Nick wound up with one of them. We learned not to put anything time related on the dash plaque with the last one (it foretold the future), so this one was more fitting, saying, “Custom Built for Round N Round” – because that’s what he does, goes round and round all day working. If you are up near Chicago keep an eye out, there’s a fair chance you might see Nick going Round N Round in this cool new ride.