Owner: Chris "Billy Bob" Mull
Ride: '86 Mazda standard cab
Hometown: Aberdeen, Washington
Club Affiliation: SubCulture
Model: Mishel Thorpe
MT: What's up, Chris? Are you ready to be grilled and tormented with questions now?
Chris: Hope so. I was looking through some Mini Truckin's to see what interviews sounded like. I wanted to see if I could prepare for this interview, but they're all different.
MT: Can you tell us a little bit about how you became the owner of your Mazda? Please tell Daanco Truck & Offroad thanks for letting you chat with us while you're at work.
Chris: My dad bought it new in 1987 so that it could be used for a pest control business. After the lease was up, I paid off the lease on the truck.
MT: How long was it before you started customizing the truck?
Chris: The first day it was mine, I installed blocks in the rear, cranked down the torsions, and pulled off the ugly chrome steel rear bumper. Within about a month, I was shaving the door handles and the tailgate.
MT: Was this the first truck that you had done anything custom to? Custom as in welded on?
Chris: Yeah, it was the first one of my own. I worked in body shops for a while working on street rods before, though, so it wasn't all that scary.
MT: So after you shaved it, what did you do next?
Chris: I primed the whole truck, performed a walk-through, and put on a topper.
MT: But when we saw the truck for the first time way back in 1995, the truck did not have a walk-through or even a shell. What happened?
Chris: You never saw the first go-round on my truck. It had already been painted winter-mint green and had pink and turquoise scallops from the nose back.
MT: Holy crap. It's hard to believe that your Mazda looked like that. Honestly, the paint scheme sounds like something I've tossed up after a harsh night of partying.
Chris: Hey man, it was the early '90s. Almost every truck you saw back then had pink on it. At least I wasn't rolling with Day-Glow wipers, a fluorescent grille, and knock-offs.
MT: (laughing) Oh God, it's sad that I can remember those parts. Even when Mini Truckin' was featuring rides that had them, I was happier to buy simple black parts from SuperShops. How long did you roll like that?
Chris: (laughs too) Until about mid 1994. About that time, I sold the truck, and the new owner wrecked it racing down a bridge. I bought what was left at the bottom of the bridge. The ground effects were ripped off when it nailed the curb.
MT: Since this was a traumatic occurrence, I won't say anything about the (dry-heaving sound) ground effects. So, how much did you buy the leftovers for?
Chris: Eight hundred bucks.
MT: How much work was involved getting the wreckage to look like a Mazda again?
Chris: A lot. The body and the bed were pulled off and a new frame was put under it. That's when I decided to body drop it. I had to replace the whole driver-side front end, including a wheel and a fender.
MT: How long was it before you realized that you had a monster of a project truck on your hands that you couldn't possibly get rid of?
Chris: About the time I looked at the back wall and the floor, which were both cut out (for the walk-through and the body drop); that was pretty scary lookin'.
MT: Why'd you take it to the show so incomplete?
Chris: To show it off, I guess. Washingtonians get excited when they see something that's not a 4x4. Body-dropped mini-trucks aren't exactly what we recommend driving year-round.
MT: I can remember being in Washington exactly twice. It rained both times. So how long has your Mazda been completed to the point it is at right now?
Chris: Not counting the last-minute paint on the valance before the photo shoot, it's been similar for the last two years. I still don't consider it complete. The interior is ripped out now. I don't like to waste any time.
MT: That sounds cool. Speaking of paint, what prompted you to try your hand at doing your own graphics? Weren't you afraid to mess up your basecoat? Paint isn't cheap.
Chris: Probably because there just wasn't anyone in this area that could do what I wanted. I had painted bases and flames and, of course, my old scallops, so I just did what I thought looked best.
MT: Do you realize that you could possibly be the mini-trucker of mini-truckers? Hell, you're Mr. Do-It-All. What's in the future for you? Any new rides to work on?
Chris: Oh, a few things. I have an Astro that I will probably 'bag and lay rockers. That's a driver for my wife, Jenney. I also have an old GMC that's going under as soon as I have some time.
MT: I wanted to thank you for coming down to Resolutions this year and allowing us to shoot your truck. MT appreciates all of the time you have spent making your truck the most incredible vehicle we have seen from the Northwest.
Chris: I'm glad you think that. Getting shot was a dream that I didn't think would ever happen. On the long drive home, I felt like I'd finished a long journey and felt kind of stuck as to what I'd do next. That's every mini-truckers aim, and mine was finally accomplished.