Tony Veltre’s ’95 Ford Ranger has quite a few interesting stories behind it. First, he was the winner of a jump contest we held late last year at a local off-road event. The winning prize was a feature in, you guessed it, Off-Road Magazine. Fortunately for us, his truck was worthy of a feature regardless of said jump. Another fun fact about this truck is the rather loud fishing-inspired paint scheme across the sides and how it came about.
A number of Tony’s friends kept telling him that his truck looks like a fish or shark because of the fiberglass, so he decided to have his painter expand on that concept. He told his painter to mimic the look of a fish with a Rattlin’ Rapala fishing lure coming out its mouth. Well, the joke was on Tony when he picked up his truck and found the painter had actually painted an entire fishing lure across the sides of his truck. He decided to leave it and thus the nickname was born.
All jokes aside, Tony is the owner of Solid Fabrication out of Beaumont, California. His truck was originally built to run the MDR race series, but a series of unfortunate events just before race day kept it from playing the field. The truck has now turned into a showcase vehicle for people to see some of the new suspension and fabrication products coming out of Solid Fabrication’s garage. OR
Vehicle: ’95 Ford Ranger
Owner: Tony Veltre
Chassis: Solid Fabrication DOM rollcage, all TIG-welded
Engine: Ford 363 ci Dart short-block, AFR heads, bored 4.125, forged internals, ARE three-stage dry sump, Howe Racing radiator, PWR coolers, Aeromotive A-1000 fuel pump, S.D.S. Stand Alone fuel delivery
Drivetrain: John Baker C6 trans, TCI torque converter, 4.87 gears, Tubeworks axles, Strange spool, Chassis Works Fab9 full-floating rear end
Suspension: Solid Fabrication equal-length I-beams, 4130 spindles, Solid Fab three-link rear suspension, King shocks, Marvin Shaw airbumps
Steering: Solid Fab cross over
Brakes: Wilwood six-piston calipers
Tires/wheels: 35-inch BFG Baja T/A, OMF bead lock wheels
Interior: Autometer gauges, Sparco wheel, Sparco EVO2 Plus seats, Crow belts, Parker Pumper, Lowrance 7200, Racer X radio
Other Parts: Hella lights, Jazz fuel cell, Winters gate shifter, Fiberwerx carbon fiber dash, Perry’s Fab-N-Fiber wide body fiberglass
Favorite Off-Road Area: Ocotillo Wells, Barstow, Lucerne Valley, Alaska