Owner: John Angles
Ride: 1999 Mazda B3000
Hometown: Hagerstown, MD
In the tight confines of a tiny dirt-floored storage unit and his townhome’s barely-one-car garage, John Angles has blown apart his Mazda and glued it back together a few times over in the span of 10 years. And by tiny, that is exactly the amount of space John was working with during the fabrication phase of the stock-floor bodydropped frame. The 11x17 garage trained John to think and act like a regular contortionist since real estate was scarce. “I had the cab rested on a wooden 2x4 table over the frame, and the bed was out in the driveway. I built a jig and bolted it to the floor so I could build the chassis on, and all I used was a 4-1/2-inch angle grinder and a welder,” says John about his limited work environment.
With barely enough room to even take a deep breath in, John pressed on with a build that had been in constant reconstruction for the better part of a decade. The constant stop/start nature of the Mazda’s progress came to an end in ’04 when John decided it was time to get down to business. “Life just got in the way, and my truck was placed on the back burner for some years. Between constantly moving, being young and partying, having my daughter, and going through three surgeries on my right hand, my B3000 spent way too much time riding the bench.”
When the right time struck, John spent the better part of a Maryland winter secluded in the garage. It was during this time when he Z’d the front frame, built fiberglass interior components, and crafted a sheetmetal bedcover, but it was the cold season of ’07 that he started working on the frame that is currently underneath the Mazda.
What John has proved is that nobody really needs a high-tech workspace outfitted with the best tools money can buy, although that would definitely make for a much smoother experience. John stuck it out, made the best out of a glorified closet space, and ripped into his own truck—something that can’t go without due recognition. Even though John’s Mazda does appear to be a finished, feature-worthy truck, he had this to say, “In a total of 10 years, this truck has been through multiple ‘finished’ stages; however, it is still not complete.”
Makes you wonder what John has brewing for the future.