Below Grade Design, a visual project started by Steve Woodward, has taken on a life of its own after its textbook grassroots beginning. Steve initially busted out a quick rendering for a friend's shop since he was familiar with Photoshop, but once enough eyeballs caught a glimpse of his design, his work became highly sought after. Builders of minis and fullsize trucks began reaching out to Steve to mock up virtual snapshots of what their rides would someday evolve into.

Steve's official website will be live soon enough, but for now, check out this small portfolio sample, and if you like what you see (we don't know why you wouldn't), give him a shout at (403) 894-8543 or drop a line to

Hard Luck
We hate to see this happen to such a clean truck, but unfortunately Seth McDowell's '98 Chevy S-10, which was featured in the August 2010 issue, has fallen victim to a terrible traffic accident. Seth was en route to the RA Allstar event when a careless lady who was paying too much attention to her cell phone and not enough attention to the road ahead struck him. Luckily, Seth wasn't seriously injured in the crash, although, his truck did take some nasty abuse. We'd like to take this time to send the guilty party in this case of senseless vehicle violence our official Mini Truckin' "You suck!"

Dear Mini Truckin',
I have been a subscriber for many years with you guys and really wish to continue the subscription, but I heard something said by one of your reps at a show that was very displeasing.

Today I was told in order to be a true minitrucker your truck must include these following things: 'bags, big wheels tucking, fully done-up interior, super sound system, motor swap, extreme paintjob, and one badass person that owns it. Is this what the mags really look for? The average Joe with a nice ride and great story can't get featured?

I have had my truck for over 10 years now and I have come along way with it, but it's not quite in the condition I described in the above paragraph. I believe that you are a mintrucker as soon as your truck gets dropped lower than stock height whether that be from a lowering kit or air-ride. I have mouths to feed and that will always come first, but I have never given up on my dream, and my truck will one day make it in Mini Truckin' mag.

Since '96 I have been hanging out with friends and cruising the street living the lifestyle of a mintrucker. All that I am asking is please tell me what you guys think that this whole "lifestyle" is all about. Thank you for your time.

Let's get one thing straight here. We are not sure who you heard these comments from, but the things you mentioned about 'bags and big wheels do hold some truth. You actually described the overall package that we look at when selecting feature and cover-worthy trucks to shoot, but not everything has to be bright and flashy. For example, check out Steve Wilk's '96 S-10 on our November cover. It's rocking 15s and isn't wearing a million-dollar paintjob, and it's quite appealing. So don't believe what you heard from whomever you heard it from.

Minitruckin' is, and should be, about having fun with your buds and making progress on your trucks when time and money permit. Of course there will be those whales floating around on the show circuit, but any genre of custom vehicles needs to have dream builds for the rest of us to drool over, and our particular segment is all the better for them.

Hope we've cleared the air a bit for you, Frankie. Now, renew that subscription already!