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March 1998 Readers' Rides

Posted in Features on March 1, 1998
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Tamanko's Ohio Land Rover
Frank Tamanko of Cincinnati has kept things basic on his '74 Land Rover. It runs on the standard petrol 2.25L four-cylinder powerplant with a four-speed gearbox and a two-speed transfer case. Modifications on the English-built 4x4 are limited to 31x9.50 Super Swamper radials, a Weber carburetor, a 9,000-pound Ramsey winch, and custom paint.

Taylor's Texas Chevy
Terry Taylor of Greenville, Texas, owns this '70 Chevy K10 Stepside, which runs the original 350 four-bolt. All Terry did was replace the water pump, fuel pump, and alternator. Body modifications include an 8,000-pound Warn winch, a custom brushguard/winch-bumper combo, and 33x12.50 Wild Country mud radials. Terry says that over the years he has earned bragging rights by rescuing fellow four-wheelers in the middle of the night.

Meunier's Indiana Bronco
Bruce Meunier of Brownsburg, Indiana, needed a 4x4 to travel the 30 miles between his home and town. He traded with a friend for this '78 Ford Bronco, but it was far from its present state. The engine was tired, the body ruined, and the interior destroyed. After swapping a '70 429 V-8 into it and adding all-new body panels and a new interior from a '94 Bronco, Bruce installed 35-inch Interco Thornbirds and painted the 4x4 Ford Blue.

Shugar's Pennsylvania Dodge
Jobe Shugar of Elverson, Pennsylvania, built his '86 Dodge Ramcharger for serious four-wheeling. A 3-inch Rugged Trail body lift and a 6-inch Skyjacker suspension lift make way for the 36x12.50R15 Super Swampers on 15x10 American Racing wheels, and there are two Skyjacker Nitro shocks per wheel. Bolt-ons include a Grizzly pushbar and 10 KC HiLiTES. The 318 engine has 170,000 miles on it and is next in line for modifications.

Reed's Minnesota Chevy
Nineteen-year-old Jared Reed of Hastings, Minnesota, is the proud owner of this '95 Chevrolet K1500 pickup. A stock 350 V-8 powers Jared's 4x4, which is built up with plenty of extras, including a 6-inch ProComp suspension lift, 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler A/Ts on American Racing wheels, a chrome Ram pushbar, a Lund Moonvisor and headlight covers, a GM Duraliner, a Mirage bug deflector, and dual exhaust.

Haydel's California Chevy
With the assistance of his local Chevy dealer, Mike Haydel of San Ramon, California, put together this '96 Chevrolet extra cab. Complete with a 4-inch Trail Master suspension lift that makes room for 33x12.50R15 BFGoodrich A/Ts on 15x10 Alcoas, Mike's Chevy runs the new 350 Vortec, which provides plenty of power for pulling his Pro-Trac MX trailer. Other mods include Xenon fender flares, locking differentials, and Flowmaster dual exhaust.

Evans' California Scout
Patrick Evans of Irvine, California, created this flatbed Scout hybrid by piecing together a two-wheel-drive and a four-wheel-drive Scout. The 4x4 is powered by a big-block 402 with an SM465 tranny and an NP205 transfer case. Patrick put the entire package together for less than $1,000. After he splurged for the 35x12.50R16.5 BFGoodrich All-Terrains, Patrick and the Scout were ready to hit the trails. He plans to add a front locker and a Warn winch.

Hodrick's California Ford
Purchased at a junkyard auction, this '85 Ford E-350 Quadravan belongs to Freddie Hodrick of Benicia, California. "I can't believe the stares and blatant finger pointing this thing gets," Freddie says. "To me, it's just a truck." Yet because it rolls on 35x16.5 Mickey Thompson tires, has a 12,000-pound Warn winch installed in a custom one-piece bumper up front, and a custom-dropped bumper in the rear, we think it's more like a tank.

Martin's Hawaii Jeep
Steve Martin of Kamuela, Hawaii, has owned his '67 Kaiser Jeep munitions carrier since it gave up its military title. Powered by a built-up Chevy 350, this classic rides on 38x15 Dick Cepek radials, a Dana 60 up front, and a Dana 70 in the rear. Steve feels a great deal of pride for his Hawaiian dream machine, which is obvious when you consider that he painted it one piece at a time and has garage-stored it for 20 years.

Owens' California Bronco
Derek Owens of Fresno, California, acquired this '75 Ford Bronco from his neighbor, Brent Uriarte, when he was only 16 years old. Cumulatively, they put together an unstoppable truck complete with an '82 302 engine, a C4 tranny, custom exhaust, Detroit Lockers, and a Dana 44 and Ford 9-inch combo. The rig rides on 33-inch BFGoodrich A/Ts on 15x10 Outlaw wheels under a 4-inch Rancho suspension lift and a 2-inch body lift, with Rancho RS 5000s all around.

Pendexter's Maine Chevy
For a Northern Maine Technical College Autobody Program project, Trevor Pendexter of Washburn, Maine, went all out on this '80s Chevy pickup. After installing a 4-inch Skyjacker suspension lift and a 3-inch body lift to accommodate 35x15.50 Super Swampers, Trevor says there was no turning back. The formerly stock, V-6-equipped pickup received a small-block 400 engine with headers and dual exhaust and a few coats of DuPont Chroma Premier paint along with matching rims.

Benson's California Suzuki
As a member of the Victor Valley 4 Wheelers, Randall Benson of Apple Valley, California, has plenty of pals to hit the trails with in his '87 Suzuki Samurai. Riding on 31-inch Remington Mud Brutes, the 4x4 is outfitted with el cheapo add-a-leaves, Con-Ferr shackles, Currie greaseable shackle bolts and poly bushings, Explorer ProComp ES3000 shocks, and Powertrax Lock-Rights in each axle. Engine mods include Calmini tri-Y headers and 2-inch exhaust.

Hovren's California Bronco II
It was a matter of principle for Ken Hovren of Riverside, California, to see his '84 Ford Bronco II in Readers' Rides. "I understand the disgust with the Mustang II in the '70s, but this is different," Ken says. We couldn't agree more. We like 'em, but we just don't see a lot of 'em. Ken's is equipped with a 2-inch body lift, a Rancho steering stabilizer, a Warn manual hub conversion, Energy Suspension bushings, and MSD ignition.

Riffle's West Virginia Ford
Randall Riffle of Nettie, West Virginia, owns this '96 Ford F-150. The engine is the factory 302, but it's more than enough power for exploring the trails near Randall's home. The truck rides on Goodyear Wrangler M/Ts on American Racing wheels, with Rancho RS 5000s in each corner. Additional accessories include a Lund tonneau cover and sunvisor and custom graphics along the doors and bed. Future mods include glasspacks, a body lift, and a grilleguard.

Craft's New Jersey Dodge
Donald Craft of Burlington, New Jersey, owns this '96 Dodge 2500. A 5.9L engine with a K&N air filter turns the 33x12.50R16.5 BFGoodrich Mud-Terrains mounted on Ultra aluminum wheels. Danas in the front and rear keep the truck rolling over or through most anything. Additional mods include Bushwacker fender flares, Lund vent shades and bugshield, aluminum side rails, a Texas Star 125 modulator, and a President CB with a Wilson 1000 antenna.

Mack's California Ford
This '92 Ford F-150, which belongs to Kevin Mack of Arcadia, California, may not be a 4x4, but you might think so after glancing at it. Running the stock 302 engine, the 4x2 pickup has an in-cab cage that extends into the bed, front and rear prerunner bumpers, Beard seats, five-point racing belts, fiberglass front and rear clips, and 4.10 limited-slip gearing. Kevin finished off the rig by adding 35-inch BFGoodrich Mud-Terrains and a 7-inch lift.

Cochrum's Texas Bronco
Nineteen-year-old Art Cochrum of Houston, Texas, uses his '89 Ford Bronco as a daily driver. After installing Hedman headers and 2 1/2-inch Flowmaster dual exhaust on the 302 engine, Art got the bug and couldn't stop. A 7-inch Superlift suspension lift came next, along with six ES3000 Explorer ProComp shocks and 35-inch BFGoodrich A/Ts on 15x10 Progressive wheels. Art made the interior more livable with a Pioneer stereo, a disc changer, and 10-inch JBL woofers.

Schall's Arizona Chevy
Bought new in 1967, used as a tow truck for a few years, and then parked in a desert field until 1994, this '67 Chevy K10 pickup belongs to Albert Schall of Tuscon, Arizona, where it housed its share of pack rats over the years. Albert has installed a 4-inch Rancho suspension lift, dual steering stabilizers, and dual shock kits next to the 33-inch Bronco tires, and he has hopped up the 350 engine with DynoMax headers and Super Flow turbo mufflers.

Stephanic's Maryland Toyota
Thomas Stephanic of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, considers his '95 Toyota Tacoma to be in its toddler years. It has a Doetsch Tech 3-inch body lift, Trail Master 2-inch add-a-leaves, and a Leer bed cap. Thomas proved the functionality of his 4x4 in the record-setting winter of 1996, when he transported hospital staff back and forth to work. Plans for the 4x4's later years include bigger tires, a 4-inch suspension lift, and slight engine modifications.

Decker's Pennsylvania Ranger
Richard Decker of Garrett, Pennsylvania, built his '91 Ford Ranger with profits from harvesting wild fur, and he uses the daily driver for hunting, fishing, camping, and off-roading. Mike and his father completed all the modifications themselves, which include an Exhaust Tech exhaust system, a Summit oil cooler, a Rancho axle truss and skidplate, James Duff shocks, and a Rancho steering stabilizer. A toolbox and a jack are mounted in the bed.

Ugly Truck of the Month
Owned by Cory Thompson of Warr Acres, Oklahoma, this ugly flatbed features a '48 Willys pickup body on a '79 Bronco chassis, a 4-inch body lift, a 3.84-geared Dana 44 in front and a Dana 60 rear, and a beer keg fuel tank. The truck rolls on 38-inch Super Swampers and is powered by a Ford 351W with a hydraulic cam, a Ford four-speed manual transmission, and an NP205 transfer case. Maybe the old saying should be, "Ugly is only skin deep."

Overstreet's Florida Toyota
After purchasing his '95 Toyota Tacoma, Wade Overstreet of Middleburg, Florida, waited a year before sending us photos of it. Maybe he wanted it to look perfect, in which case it was worth the wait. Wade installed a 3-inch suspension lift to fit the 33x10.50R15 BFGoodrich A/Ts mounted on 15x10 Centerline wheels. The engine received a Flowmaster exhaust system, and the interior was completed with a Pioneer CD and EQ, Hi-Phonics amps, and Punch 8-inch subs.

Blanchard's Canada Blazer
Vince Blanchard of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, uses his '82 GMC Jimmy Sierra Classic as a daily driver, but he built it to accommodate all conditions. The 350 engine is outfitted with an Edelbrock Performer manifold, cam, and lifter set; Blackjack headers; and Flowmaster mufflers. A modified TH700-R4 tranny with a B&M Shift Improver Kit and an NP208 transfer case make up the underbelly, and the 4x4 rolls on 33x12.50 Hankook T24 radials.

Menard's Texas Ford
What began as a stock black '77 Ford F-150 was turned into a custom-built mud slinger by Mike Menard of Dyess Air Force Base, Texas. It's complete with a 460ci engine that has an Edelbrock Performer intake and a Holley 750 carb. This mean-looking ride rolls on 39x18R15 Mickey Thompsons with 15x14 Eaton wheels under a 9-inch Skyjacker Softride suspension lift, a 3-inch body lift, and custom ladder bars.

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