In 2012 King of the Hammers added a race called the Smittybilt Every Man Challenge (EMC) in response to comments that the main race was getting too expensive for the average Joe to compete in. Rules for the stock class are strict, requiring stock engine and transmission and stock suspension configuration, and limiting tire size to 35-inch DOT-approved rubber.
The class is dominated by Jeeps, and Nick Baldwin of Southern California Auto Repair (SCAR) even built a Wrangler last year for a customer of his. When it came time to build his own ride though, Nick wasn’t afraid to try something different. In fact, after nearly losing his life in a motorcycle accident five years ago, Nick isn’t afraid of much anything. He decided to build a Bronco II with the assistance of his co-driver, Kurt Farrar, and the support of his wife, Jackie, and his parents.
While Nick had to end his race early due to overheating, he wasn’t the only one. Out of 26 vehicles in the stock class, only one managed to finish the race! With a year to prepare for the next Every Man Challenge, we expect Nick Baldwin to be back next year to give the Jeeps a run for their money.
1987 Ford Bronco II
Engine: 2.9L V-6
Transmission: A4LD 4-speed automatic
Transfer case: BW1350 and BW1354 with Box4Rox adapter
Front Axle: TTB Dana 44 with 5.38 Spicer gears, Detroit Electric Locker, and drive flanges
Rear Axle: Dana 44 with 5.38 Spicer gears, Detroit Locker, and 33-spline G2 axleshafts
Springs & Such: 7-inch front coils, Pro Comp 4-inch lift springs, Revolver shackles in rear, Bilstein 7100 shocks
Tires & Wheels: 33x12.50R15 Pro Comp X-Terrains on 15x10 Champion beadlock rims
Steering: PSC hydraulic assist and swing-set steering
Other Stuff: SCAR 6-point rollcage, Jaz fuel cell, OBX fuel pump, Smittybilt XRC8 winch with synthetic winch line on custom SCAR Off Road tubular front bumper, East County Drive Line driveshafts, SCAR Off Road skidplates