Triple-Turbo 12-Valve Cummins Engine

Triple-Turbo 12-Valve Cummins Engine

Mike Martin's "Franken Truck" has undergone quite the transformation.

Courtesy of Engine Builder by Evan Laux

Mike Martin’s passion for mechanics and tinkering with engines started at an early age. He recalls taking apart lawnmowers and fixing them for neighbors as a child. According to his parents, he even completed his first valve job at the age of only 9. He honed his skills by attending vocational school for auto mechanics and had a shop teacher who owned a Sprint Car, which allowed Mike to tinker with his own streetcar and turn it into a hot rod.

After a six-year stint in the Navy, where Mike’s initial plan to build a blown alcohol T-bucket for the streets was deemed impractical, Martin’s fascination with truck pulling led him to the world of modified tractors. He couldn’t afford the tractors he admired at the time, so he settled for a blown two-wheeler, which marked the beginning of his journey into the diesel world.

Martin’s passion for experimentation and diesel performance then led him to acquire an old Dodge truck that had rolled down a mountain in North Carolina. Initially, he had no concrete plans for the truck, but one thing led to another. He combined parts from different trucks and began modifying it, resulting in the birth of “Franken Truck.” The name stuck, in memory of a dear friend who coined it.

Martin’s diesel masterpiece features a triple-turbo setup, a configuration that caught our attention. Inspired by the high-performance diesel trucks he witnessed at events like the Ultimate Callout Challenge, he decided to differentiate his build. Instead of opting for a traditional turbo combination, he chose the ATT 351s, aiming to achieve similar performance while breaking the mold.

“I know a number of trucks were running triples, and it seems like everybody on the compound side – at least the street stuff – was always a 362/475 or some combination similar to that,” Martin says. “I just didn’t want to do the same thing.”

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