We've touched on what happens to past cover trucks once the owner decides it's time to move on.
Most are sold and very few are resurrected to see our cameras, much less the light of day, ever again. This happens to be one of those rare cases, because after Gunner, from Sunset, came across "Slapper's" Tacoma, he knew he wanted to build his own version of the perfect minitruck.
When it was time to get to business, Gunner made two phone calls. First on his list was a call to Devious Customs to modernize the outdated reverse four-link setup on the truck, although, back when Jendro originally 'bagged this Tacoma, it was well ahead of its time. After Jeff and the boys at Devious did their duties, the next phone call was to Joel "Grommit" Sadenwasser at Extreme Audio & Kustoms for the rest of the makeover. This phone call turned this project into a complete rebuild and where our story begins. The truck drove into the shop still looking like "Slapper's" Tacoma and by the time the crew at Extreme Audio had their way with it, the completely transformed Tacoma rolled out as a masterpiece.
Extreme Audio & Kustoms had their hands full with a complete rebuild including full paint, interior, and stereo to be completed in time for the Forbidden Fantasy show, which was only five months away. The starring cast of this build begins with the shop owner and "Project Manager" Joel "Grommit" Sadenwasser. His crew is made up of several talented individuals, so even though the timeline was daunting, it was nothing this team couldn't handle. Adam "Hand Made" Radovich is the stereo and interior master, Matt "The Lagger" Hutchinson handled the paint duties, and Marc "Penut" Darrah took on the role of body work and shop help.
This issue delves deep behind the scenes and rather than showing you the usual step by step install process, we're taking an exclusive inside look at a few of the craziest minitruck builds. So check out what it took to transform this 2003 cover truck into a 2009 cover truck, and be sure to grab our next issue as well for the full feature. For more information, contact the companies listed in the Source box.
(1-9) Every project starts somewhere, and this one is no different. This truck has seen some wear and tear since its original build. After Devious buttoned up the suspension work, it was time for the crew at Extreme Audio & Kustoms to rebuild the rest of the truck. They decided to start from scratch and began by disassembling the entire truck to put a game plan into action. With the truck tore down, the plan was set to split the truck into two major projects being worked on simultaneously to meet the strenuous deadline. After the tear down, they split into two teams: body and paint, and interior and stereo. Even though some of the work crossed over, this allowed the team to stay on schedule and focus on quality work in a demanding amount of time.
(1-2) All it took to start...
(1-2) All it took to start this complete rebuild were a few rough spots that needed to be repaired.
(3-6) The crew tore the truck...
(3-6) The crew tore the truck apart and began to make a plan to ensure on-time completion.
(7-9) The interior was also...
(7-9) The interior was also gutted as this would be one of the focuses of the rebuild.
(10-13) We've all heard it said before - the final product is only as good as the prep work. So the Extreme Audio & Kustoms crew made sure to go into the old paint and body work and begin to repair any fallout, and fix problem areas accordingly. Once the body work was completed and the truck was smooth, the bed was prepped and sprayed with SEM chip guard and black basecoat. With the bedliner duties taken care of, the rest of the truck was prepped and sprayed with two coats of SEM primer. After the primer was dry, more sanding fun and body massaging completed the super-straight surface needed for a black basecoat.
(14-15) Using SEM Color Horizon products for all the paint work, Matt first sprayed the Tacoma with black basecoat. The SEM products are solvent born and compliant to the new 3.5 VOC paint law in California. With the black laid down and dry, Matt was able to get to the fun stuff. Using fine-line tape he worked out his graphic scheme on the bed, cab, doors, and hood of the Tacoma. With the graphics laid out he sprayed the silver which would serve as the bottom two-tone color and the base coat for the candy graphics.