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1995 Toyota - Sadistic Behavior

A Satisfying Hurt

John Mata Jr.
Oct 1, 2008
Photographers: Mark Halvorsen
Photo 2/9   |   1995 Toyota left Side Angle
There comes a time in a truck builder's life when the most vital of decisions must be made. Should one submit to the forces of gravitational pull and introduce the truck's frame to the pavement, or is higher ground tops? For some, this quandary will lead to an extensive list of pros and cons. For others, the choice will be dependant on how close the trusty credit card's balance is to officially becoming red flagged. Bobby Martins from Sadistic Iron Werks found himself in the latter category, once he saw the $1,200 price tag for each of the shocks he would need to lift his "budget" '95 Toyota into pre-runner status. Suddenly, joining the minitrucker battle against towering speed bumps and gaping dips in the street didn't seem so bad.
Photo 3/9   |   1995 Toyota right Rear Angle
Bobby had decided to keep his project rather mild-a clean and simple daily driver would suffice. Now, we have all told ourselves that, but it usually doesn't take long before we start chatting with the UPS delivery guy on a first-name basis. The parts keep rolling in, bank account funds become scarce, and the damn credit card representatives won't stop calling. (Seriously, don't those credit rep drones ever get the hint?) Bobby quickly caught the bug and became familiar with the situation-quite well-during the two years he spent replacing every original bolt, line, and bushing on the Toyota.
Suspension was the first major call of duty that Bobby answered. The approach he took in order to successfully bring his truck down to ground level required much more skill, patience, and aggravation than any average drop. The floor was channeled for a body-drop, but instead of altering the frame, new control arm mounts were fabricated. The steering travel was even tampered with a bit in order to keep the factory hood attached to the truck. It sounds rather labor intensive, right? Ha! This was only Phase One.
Since the truck was sitting around in pieces already, Bobby figured this was an ideal time to go crazy powdercoating it. The frame was at the top of the list to be coated, then once it and the other parts were done baking, the reassembly extravaganza was about to kick off. Of course, this wouldn't be the final assembly, because Bobby still needed to lay down some fresh paint. He looked no further than his friends at Image Collision to wield the spray gun. As you can tell, Bobby didn't half-step during the truck's suspension and exterior work, so there was no way he was going to fall off while cleaning up the cockpit.
Nothing too crazy was planned for the interior; a well-executed, sanitary appearance was the main objective. The Kicker audio system turned out to be the highlight inside of the cab, as all necessary speakers were loaded into the custom center console and speaker pods. A-Plus Upholstery was called upon to wrap and sew the Civic buckets, consoles, and panels in black leather and suede. If that interior isn't impressive enough for you, take a look at the black Bentley carpet that has been added for a touch of class and sophistication.
It is fairly obvious that Bobby didn't have the willpower to keep this Toyota project within the realm of reason. Not to say that completely disassembling your truck twice is crazy; it's simply a behavioral trait that most minitruckers carry. There is nothing wrong with transforming a decent and reliable daily driver into a full-blown show truck-especially if you can do it for under 15-large.


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