After having built a handful of Chevy S-10s, Artie decided to take a crack at building a Tacoma. He had already been in the scene for many years and seen trends come and go. As a matter of fact, Artie had even sported a Texas Tail and spoke wheels in the past. Having seen it all, and done it all, he went all out on his '98 Toyota Tacoma.

He started the job by picking up a handful of DJM parts for his truck and then cutting it up. He brought the truck to the ground by body-dropping it almost 3 inches and using a two-link setup. Firestone airbags replaced the factory springs, 2,500 pound 'bags up front, with 2,600 pound 'bags in the rear. Once this was handled, it was on to the body. The standard assortments of items were shaved, such as the antenna, gas door, and the door handles. Added to the list were also the front corners, which are a very popular treatment with Tacoma guys. Around this time, a '95 Tacoma 4x4 bumper was added to remove the ugly, diving board '98 Tacoma bumper. A full set of Trenz grilles were added, along with a CheckMate flush-mounted bedcover to really finish up a clean and smooth look.

Now the truck was ready for paint. The duty for this job was handed down to Paul Crocker, who laid down an assortment of PPG paints. The dark blue and cream two-tone were perfectly accented by Candy Orange flames. To add to the already killer paintjob, the theme was carried to the inside of the truck, where Paul Crocker also painted several pieces to match the exterior of the truck. Along with some toast-colored tweed and an Alter Images Steering wheel, the truck was now ready to hit the scene, take some trophies, and bring tears to the competition.

You can be sure to spot Artie at most of the minitruck and hot-rod shows, where he enjoys spending time with his dad and his '56 Chevy Business Coupe. So, next time you're in the South at a show, or a cruise spot, be on the look-out for Artie and his Tacoma.

The Lowdown

Rolling Attire
Wheels (Front/Rear): 18 x 75 Motegi MR7
Tires (Front/Rear): 215/35R18 Toyo Proxes

Chassis Modifications
Suspension type: Air
Front suspension: DJM control arms
Rear suspension: Two-link with a Panhard bar
Airbag/cylinder type and size: (Front): 2,500 (Rear): 2,600
Control arms: DJM upper and lower
Shocks: Toxic Shocks
Valves: Aero 3/8 inch
Compressor: One Thomas
Air line: 3/8 inch
Frame mods: 8-inch step notch
Brakes: Powdercoated Reflex Blue
Performed by: Owner Artie Richardson
City/state: Ponchatoula, LA

Body Modifications
Shaved: Front corner lights, antenna, gas door, door
handles, taillights, and tailgate
Body-dropped: 2.75-inch traditional
Front end: Billet grille, 95 Tacoma 4x4 bumper and valance
Back end: FBI rear skin and license box
Taillights: 4-inch LEDS
Exterior bolt-ons: Checkmate flush bedcover
Misc.: Bed walls and floor aluminum with matching bed liner
Performed by: Owner Artie Richardson
City/state: Ponchatoula, LA

Paint
Brand and colors: PPG Stellar Blue Pearl, Cool Vanilla, Silver Metallic with Candy Orange overlay (flames)
Style: Graphics
Pinstriping: Seaside Aqua
Performed by: Paul Crocker
City/state: Baton Rouge, LA

Interior
Seats: Stock bench cut to buckets
Material: Marine Blue vinyl, Toast Interlude 2000 tweed
Dash: Painted Stellar Blue Pearl and Cool Vanilla
Door panels: Paint Stellar Blue Pearl, Trenz Flame handles, Toast
Center console: Toast tweed, white vinyl
Flooring: Blue carpet
Headliner: Toast tweed
Gauges: Flamed by Nu Image
Misc.: Alter Images billet steering wheel
Seats by: Madman Marks
City/state: Baton Rouge, LA
Doors/console by: Owner Artie Richardson
Paint by: Paul Crocker
City/state: Baton Rouge, LA

Stereo
Head unit: Pioneer 6.5-inch touch screen
Mids and highs: Memphis Components
Subwoofers: Eight JL W7s
Amplifier for subwoofers: Memphis 1,000
Wiring/accessories: Memphis 110 powerwire
Custom fabrication: Center console is also a subwoofer box
Performed by: Owner Artie Richardson
City/state: Ponchatoula, LA

Special Thanks From Owner:
Mom, Dad, Josh, Dub City, Craig, Glenn, Richard, E.J., and everyone else who helped along the way.

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