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American Graffiti

Front Driver Side
Christian Hazel
| Brand Manager, Four Wheeler
Posted January 1, 1999
Photographers: Ed Fortson

An IH in Urban Camouflage

Step By Step

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  • Randy Castle's '73 Scout.

  • The 35-inch BFGoodrich Mud-Terrains are 35x12.50 and mount on 15x8 aluminum wheels. The roll-up soft top keeps the fullsize spare, Hi-Lift jack, bedliner, and occupants cool, dry, or warm, as the case may be.

  • VDO gauges in a nicely finished dash, three-way adjustable buckets, a Mico-Lock e-brake, and a harness are seen here. Not seen are the new wiring harness, rear-mounted battery, tool box, or snow chains.

  • Look Ma, no fenders! The tilt front end hides a balanced ’77 AMC 360 that boogies 10:1 pistons to the rhythm of a Crane cam. A Quadrajet juices the fully ported heads via a Torker manifold, while Flowmasters quiet the rumble. All that jive hustles through a Centerforced T-18 four-speed with a granny low and splits via a rebuilt Dana 20.

  • The front Dana 44 holds 4.56s and a Lock-Right, and it sits under Toyota spring packs with International main leaves. Rancho RS 9000s on custom shock mounts pull damping duty. The custom-dropped drag link ensures smooth steering even when the stuff gets rough. Bringing up the rear is a Dana 44 beefed with a Detroit and custom discs using GM components. The 33-gallon main and 12-gallon reserve tanks ensure a long cruising range. Full-length exhaust is a nice touch that ensures the occupants aren’t breathing poisonous fumes.

  • Heavy-duty driveshafts make sure forward momentum is maintained even when the custom rocker panels are dragging on obstacles.

  • The dimensions of the Scout II let Randy carry more gear than a cooler and an extra pair of socks while fitting through terrain that would peel the fenders off a fullsize.

Did you ever get in trouble as a kid for drawing on the walls? We’re guessing that Randy Castle of Silverthorne, Colorado, must have spent most of his school days with his nose in the corner. Randy offered the IH as a canvas for the technicolor imagination of his friends and their rug-rats. Perhaps the most striking feature of this Scout, the paint job, is only the icing on a very formidable cake.

Randy wanted a vehicle that could do it all—from rocks to mud to snow, and everything in between. As a previous owner of three Scout IIs the choice was obvious. He bought the ’73 mostly complete and began improving on what he had. Lack of bolt-on parts availability forced Randy to make or design many of his own parts with the help of friends. The spring-over lift with dropped drag link and International/ Toyota leaves, a custom aluminum front bumper, a six-point cage, and four-wheel discs from a mid-’80s Chevy are but a few of the tricks to be found. A full complement of gauges, fuel and ignition cut-off switches, extraction tools, and even a compass ensure a successful return from the wilderness. As with any project the buildup is ongoing, but one thing is for sure—Randy is off with flying colors.