This article originally featured in the July 2022 issue.
Snow crests the window sill of a young boy’s upstairs bedroom as he lies in bed, eyes wide open in anxious anticipation. As the rising sun slowly lights up the room and his parents are still fast asleep, he decides it’s worth sneaking downstairs for a peek at what awaits him. While carefully avoiding the especially loud, creaking steps on the stairs, he makes his way down and lays his eyes on his dream under the Christmas tree: a 2012 F350.
Okay, that’s not exactly how Brycen Kellett got his diesel pickup, but he did say that he felt like a kid on Christmas morning while picking it up. He’d never owned anything newer than a 2003, so the newer truck definitely represented a learning opportunity and he couldn’t wait to get started.
A Potential Career
Brycen has worked a variety of jobs from construction to driving semis, but hopes for a career in the truck industry, a hobby he’s had since his dad owned mud trucks when he was a kid. As far as interest in the diesels?
“There’s a small group in my hometown that was always massively influencing each other day after day and I kind of just fell into it and the rest is history,” said Brycen. “Since then I’ve met a lot of great friends and worked with a lot of amazing companies who I wouldn’t ever have imagined working with. It’s just a really humbling experience to think of how far things can go and how personal the whole truck scene can get.”
Brycen isn’t as big a diesel loyalist as some of the other truck owners we feature. He doesn’t see a huge difference between the two, but recognizes they present two very different routes when completing a build.
The Diesel Route
Brycen originally had a 7.3L Power Stroke and when that died on him, he was dead set on a 6.7L. He woke up with his eyes on a red F250, but a friend at a dealership messaged Brycen telling him to check out the F350 Super Duty Lariat they just got in. After seeing some pictures of it, he was sold.
He put a full engine rebuild into it, including a FoMoCo 2015+ turbo with a billet compressor wheel. It has FOX reservoir shocks on all four corners and a 2.5-inch leveling kit with the level blocks, traction bars and Maryland Performance Diesel intercooler piping kit all powder-coated in illusion malbec. The diesel sits on 24x14 American Force peak concave wheels with 33x13.50 AMP M/T’s tires, a tire built for mud, and has a 5-inch stainless exhaust.
In terms of cosmetics, this truck isn’t lacking. A 1000pc Starlight Headliner and 26 pure white rock lights light it up along with Gorecon cab lights and PTM headlight housings.
Due to a lack of resources, Brycen isn’t able to complete a lot of the changes himself, but is grateful to know people who can help him out. Other modifications include an aftermarket head unit, bed cover, PTM front badge, 5 percent tint all around with 10 percent on the windshield, Gorecon Switchbacks in mirrors and turn signals, Billet oil pan and a CCV reroute kit.
When it comes to describing his build, Brycen takes the humble route.
“Truthfully, up until now there hasn’t been anything I’d consider crazy–just wheels, tires, small powder-coat here and there but it was definitely the stepping stone for what’s to come. Here in the coming months, with the help of Southern Style 4x4 and my newly acquired partnership with Maxxed Diesel, we are going to take this build to the next level I’ve been dreaming of.”
Brycen has only taken his diesel to two shows, but he’s loved the experience both times. The first show was Daytona Beach Truck Week last year and then he attended Starved Rock Nationals in his home county in Illinois.
“As far as reaction, honestly it’s the little kids looking at mine and everyone else’s stuff with awe that makes it so worth it since most of us used to be those kids looking up in awe,” he concluded. “My favorite memories would definitely have to be from Daytona meeting all the people I did, and just experiencing the show scene for the first time was like being part of a movie to me. It was insane and I hope to make many more memories like that in the future. To me it’s not just a toy to get trophies with. It doesn't have to be the nicest or fanciest or most detailed. As long as at the end of the day I can bring that look of awe and help spark that same interest in someone else, I'm happy.”
Maryland Performance Diesel
Southern Style 4x4
Starved Rock Nationals