It used to be that highly detailed airbrush paint jobs only existed on Harleys. Lately, we’re seeing more and more tribal flame paint jobs popping up on trucks. So it’s safe to say that tribal flames are the style to have. Mike Scotti’s slammed ’92 Chevy is a perfect example of the new trend.

Mike’s ride started out as any hay hauler. Then the disorder that only an enthusiast is afflicted with came to light. In Mike’s words “One thing led to another.” Three years later, the truck left the garage. For starters, Mike wanted the truck to lie as low as possible. The frame-on-ground setup was completed using 2-inch drop spindles up front and a custom four-link in the rear. Lifting the rig is accomplished with Firestone 26C airbags linked to the Pete and Jake’s chromed four-link. A Belltech flip kit and custom C-notch have the axle clearing the rails, while Doetsch shocks take up all the bumps. The suspension package includes 3/8-inch pressure line and ½-inch ports on all the bags.

With the modified frame, the truck came within millimeters of hitting rock bottom. To finish off the drop, Dereck Veenstra of Clovis, California, got to cutting and performed a 2 ½-inch body drop. With a case of the post-drop blues afflicting the paint job, Dereck and Mike went all the way to clean up the exterior. The handles, bedrail, bed stake pockets, and third light were shaved. To complete the smooth look a Sir Michaels roll pan was welded in out back. The stale stock front grille was replaced by a ’98 Silverado grille with Stull billet inserts. APC clear lens corner markers finish the whole package.

After all that bodywork, the paint had to befit a kingly carriage. A short trip to Kaotic Customs in Compton, California, landed the Chevy in a paint booth presided over by the chief finisher, Ryan. A stock Chevrolet black was laid down as the basecoat. Next in line were the flames. Ryan spent a few long weeks getting all the highlights and shadows right using an airbrush and House of Kolor’s Lime-Time green. The tricky part of the airbrushing entailed hiding the faces and skulls that are expressed in shadow lines of the flame job. To ice the cake, the flames were pinstriped in vibrant yellow and topcoated in clear.

A phenomenal paint job calls for something to be done to the engine. Mike wanted to retain the driveability of his rig and get the same great gas mileage he was used to, so nothing extreme was needed. The turbo 400 tranny was beefed up with a shift kit. For a slight improvement in performance, Mike went with JBA exhaust headers, a 3 ½-inch exhaust system, Superchip’s ECU chip, and a K&N air filter. With around 310 horses, this custom hauler is no pig. The final power transfer is made with 17x8 Center Line Spears wheels wrapped in 255/40R17 Nitto rubber. As Mike would say, “Don’t hop it, just drop it.”