Click on the video link below to see the buildup and cover shoot of this rocker-laying Toyota on 26's!
WEB SHOTS - SEE VIDEO OF THIS TRUCK HERE!!
'08 Toyota Tundra Double Cab
Some of the craziest yet cool ideas are derived over a few cans of brew, including the thought of building a full custom truck for a SEMA Show that's only two months away. That's exactly how George Dolezal wound up with an '08 Toyota Tundra. The project came up while George was hanging around his friend Daniel Wheeler, who was starting a paint shop in Mansfield, Texas, named Lucid Paint. Daniel's shop happens to be right next to Nfamus Air Suspension, which was also a relatively new business. When Nfamus' owner, Keith Sawyer, offered the guys a few Keystone Light beers, they started to get into some serious conversation.
The main focus of the discussion was about creating a show-stopping truck to promote the two businesses. Since the name of the game in the truck scene is to build something nice that has never been done before, they thought that a newer Tundra would be the perfect candidate. Not only was it an opportunity for Keith and Daniel to promote their shops, but it was the chance for someone to own a vehicle that would get a lot of attention. Hearing all of this talk combined with the effects of alcohol, George became interested in funding the project. Though he's never owned an airbagged show truck before, George knew that Keith and Daniel would take care of him.
During that night of boozing, George committed himself to the build and said he would go ahead and purchase the truck. Once he was able to overcome his mad hangover and shock of what he got himself into, George started his search for the stock truck. Since he manages used cars at a big dealership, he was able to find a repossessed one for cheap at a wholesale auction. George dropped the truck and keys off at Nfamus and let the crew go nuts on it.
With less than two months before SEMA, Keith along with Neal Rimer, had the huge task of making a new chassis for the truck. Though the Tundra was a high-priority project at the shop, Keith's schedule was already booked and the only time he had to work on it was after-hours. Still wanting to accomplish something monumental, he decided to measure the truck for 26-inch wheels with a body drop. After the dimensions were noted, the cab and bed were removed and placed next door at Lucid Paint for shaving and bodywork. With the truck torn down to the frame, Keith and Neal cut off, stripped, and placed the front clip, motor, and transmission on his frame table. From there, they fabricated a new frame out of 2x4x1/4-inch steel tubing and attached it to the front end.
To help create the new adjustable air suspension, Keith and Neal raised the new set of framerails 3 inches above the table, which would become its new drive height. The front end recieved McGaughy's drop spindles designed for '99-'06 Chevy fullsize trucks and a matching set of disc brakes. The truck was converted to Chevy parts because they were more readily available and it meant that there would be a wide variety of wheels that could be bolted up to the popular six-lug pattern. At the time, the guys were waiting on a sponsorship of Toyo tires to go around the 26-inch U2 wheels and had to borrow a set of 24-inch wheels with tall tires to use as dummies. With the spindles in place, a Chevy rack-and-pinion was mounted in a straight position, and tubular upper and lower control arms were made.
Making progress at a fast pace, Keith and Neal placed the cab over the frame and cut it for tire, transmission, and driveshaft clearances. Once that was finished, they were able to move on to the rear suspension. Again going with late-model Chevy parts, a rearend was snagged from the junkyard, and narrowed 3 inches. Then it was bolted to the Toyota driveshaft with special U-joints, and a triangulated four-link was created. With this all buttoned up, the bed was cut and mounted on top of the new frame.
As time before the show was dwindling, the truck started to really come together. The Toyo tires arrived just before the truck was rolled next door to Lucid for paint. There, Daniel sprayed the Tundra in a two-tone of Honda Kiwi Green and Porsche Titan Silver. To break the colors, Daniel airbrushed a faux chrome trim with Blazin Copper Orange in the center of it. While the exterior was getting finished, Brad Wellman was busy cutting down and reupholstering the factory front seats. The rear bench was then ditched for a set of modified bucket seats from an Isuzu Rodeo. Switching to buckets in the rear made room for the custom center console that holds two 12-inch subwoofers.
The week before the show, Keith and Daniel were in a mad scramble to get the truck finished in time. With the paint dry, the bed was removed for the custom inner sheetmetal work. While Daniel was busy color-sanding the cab, Keith had Jeff Cox of Extreme Polyurethane Coatings come to the shop and coat the new bed floor with a Vortex spray-on bedliner. When the bed was finished, it was reattached to the frame so it could get color-sanded and buffed along with the rest of the truck. At this time, it was Halloween night and the 48-night build came to an end when the truck was loaded on a trailer for the two-day drive to Las Vegas.
Just about everything on the Tundra was done, except for the replacement of a few small parts that were busted during the process. Since all the Toyota dealerships were closed when Keith and his friend Chris Brull started the drive, they figured that they could hit one up on the way. The next day they got into New Mexico and found a dealership in the Albuquerque area that had the parts that were needed. On the way out of town, they had a front tire blowout, which almost caused them to flip the rig that was towing the Tundra. Shaken up a bit, they bolted on a spare and cruised back into town for a new set of tires.
From there it was smooth sailing all the way to Nevada. After all the intensive labor and hard work getting this vehicle to Vegas, all that Keith had left to do was to get it over to the convention center for the staging of the truck's spot in the show. When Keith drove it in and saw me awaiting him, he was relieved that the project made it. This was the first time that I had seen the truck in person and I was impressed by the extent of how custom it was, given a limited amount of time. These guys have accomplished a job well done and we are proud to name it the first completed custom '08 Tundra laying rockers.
5.7L V-8 / K&N cold-air intake / custom exhaust with Flowmaster muffler / painted engine cover and fuse box lid / battery relocated under bed / fuse box and brake booster relocated for tire clearance / rearend from '99-'06 Chevy fullsize 1/2-ton truck narrowed 3 inches
By: Keith Sawyer of Nfamus Air Suspension, Mansfield, Texas / Daniel Wheeler of Lucid Paint, Mansfield, Texas
Front & Rear: 26x10 U2 055 with 28mm offset
Front & Rear: 305/30R26 Toyo Proxes STII
Front: Custom upper and lower control arms / McGaughy's drop spindles for '99-'06 Chevy fullsize 1/2-ton truck / factory steering rack and disc brakes from '99-'06 Chevy fullsize 1/2-ton truck / Slam Specialties RE-7 airbags / custom airbag mounting brackets / Monroe shocks
Rear: Custom triangulated four-link / Slam Specialties RE-7 airbags / Monroe shocks
Accessories: Two Air Zenith compressors / Air Zenith digital air gauge mounted in overhead console / 5-gallon air tank / 3/8-inch Asco valves / custom 20-gallon aluminum fuel cell
Chassis: Custom 3/4 frame made out of 2x3x1/4-inch steel tubing / custom bridge made out of 1-3/4-inch round steel tubing
By: Keith Sawyer of Nfamus Air Suspension, Mansfield, Texas
Shaved door handles, rear door handle pockets on cab, third brake light, and tailgate handle / firewall cut and tubbed for front tires / cab floor cut and recontoured for transmission and driveshaft clearnance / Street Scene mirrors / sheetmetal inner bed with wheeltubs and Vortex spray-on liner
BY: Keith Sawyer of Nfamus Air Suspension, Mansfield, Texas / Daniel Wheeler of Lucid Paint, Mansfield, Texas / Jeff Cox of Extreme Polyurethane Coatings, Dallas, Texas (spray-on liner)
Two-tone with Du Pont Porsche Titan Silver on top and Honda Kiwi Green on bottom / faux chrome trim airbrushed with Dupont Bright Silver base and Blazin Copper Orange in center
BY: Daniel Wheeler of Lucid Paint, Mansfield, Texas
Dash smoothed and painted to match exterior / factory front seats reupholstered in black ultra leather and black suede with headrest cut off / Isuzu Rodeo bucket seats in rear reupholstered in black ultra leather and black suede with headrest cut off / door panels with painted inserts, black suede inserts, and painted speaker pods / custom-made rear center console with painted center and black ultra leather sides / headliner upholstered in black suedeBY: Brad Wellman, Mansfield, Texas / Daniel Wheeler of Lucid Paint, Mansfield, Texas (paint)
Factory head unit / Rockford Fosgate 6-1/2-inch coaxial speakers in doors / two 12-inch P1 subwoofers / 300.2 amplifier
BY: Brad Wellman, Mansfield, Texas
Keith Sawyer, Neal Rimer, Daniel Wheeler, Brad Wellman, April Vann, Aldo Castaneda, Nick DeCasas, Robert Hensley, Matt Kimmel, Michael Redd, Marcos, Derek, Jon Toyo Tires, Air Zenith, Ray at RPM Graphics, Jeff Cox at Vortex, Chris and Amanda of Crime Pays Video, Ronnie and Tom of Lowrider Depot, and Tim of Slam Specialties