Feature VehicleNews

Wyatt Hinkle’s “Whoop Scissors”

We all love the badass builds, the bling, the beautiful masterpieces that high end shops build for their customers. Those are all awesome, but for many of us an unobtainable pipe dream and wishful thinking. But do you have to have the latest bling to go enjoy the desert with your family and friends? No way!

Off-roading has its roots in garage builds. Friends and family coming together and building a truck or buggy from scratch. Sketching out their ideas on paper, the old men passing their knowledge to the young, helping your buddy do an engine swap or cycle the suspension, a lot can be accomplished with a case of beer, a carport and a few friends or family. 

Such is the build of Wyatt Hinkle’s 95 F-150. A true father / son project, they built Wyatt a perfect daily diving, go anywhere, flog whoops, prerun, camp out, pit your race car at out in Cohabuzo Junction do it all rig. 

The truck was built in a general sense as a tribute to Larry Plank’s bright yellow OBS Ford Prerunner dubbed “Bid Bird.”  Those who’ve been around offroad racing will remember Plank’s truck with the giant I-beam’s, massive double swing set steering system and low slung stance.

The inspiration. The late Larry Plank’s “Big bird”

The donor was a 1995 F-150 short bed dual fuel tank Super cab 4×4 with 263,000 original miles purchased for $1,200.  Built over a three year time frame.  It was built to be a daily driver for a high school kid that would soon need to use it to commute to college but also fully capable to chase or have fun in the desert. 

Where it all started – A $1200 Ford pickup and a dream

Many aspects of the truck were built to accommodate future improvements.  The 37’s and 4:11 gears make it perfect for highway driving with decent fuel economy.  Total fuel capacity with the dual tanks is 34 gallons with over 300 mile range.


  • Ford Windsor Iron Head 5.8 Liter V8 sourced from a carbed 1984 Ford Bronco.
  • Engine flat top pistons, mild Schneider cam, Roller rockers and shorty tube headers estimated 320 HP.
  • OEM EFI system from a 1995 F-150 fed by a UMP barrel style air cleaner system.
  • Aftermarket power steering cooler mounted behind skid plate.
  • Custom 3 inch exhaust from the headers fed into a Flowmaster muffler followed by 2.5 inch tubing to passenger side exit in front of rear tire.
  • Engine bay includes remote multiple isolator electrical accessory power system ran with 1/O welding wire and Caterpillar (CAT) heavy equipment digital hour meter. 
  • Ford E4OD Automatic Transmission vented to firewall
  • Borg Warner 1356 Transfer case, vented to firewall, rebuilt and swapped from slip yoke to fixed yoke style by Madhouse Mechanical to allow for operation of truck with rear driveline removed and to accommodate the addition of a “tone ring” necessary for the E4OD trans.
  • Custom built drivelines, with rear changed to slip joint style due to fixed yoke transfer case.

Front End:

  • Plated, cut and turned, trussed housing extended 4.5 inches per side Threat Motorsports.
  • Longer axles clearanced at the U-joint to allow for extended travel.
  • Differential, vented to firewall, rebuilt and 4:11 gears installed and set up by Madhouse Mechanical.
  • Monster 11/16th inch wheel studs using flanged wheel lug nuts requiring 1 inch and an 1/8th socket to remove.
  • Housing clear coated rather than painted to look bitchin.
  • Front strapped at 19 inches of travel.
  • Damped by 14 inch x 2.5 King Race Series Dual Rate Coil-overs.
  • Fabricated coil-over towers with engine cage set up for integrated bypass shock and bumps.  Bypass and hydro bumps left for another day.
  • Extended boxed, radius arms by Threat Motorsports which pivot on 1.25” heims.
  • OEM Rubber bumps for now.
  • Double swing set steering pivots by Threat Motorsports.  Tie rods fabbed and set up using 1.50 inch ¼” wall tubing.  All steering pivots utilize 7/8” heims.  Tie rods clear coated rather than painted to look bitchin.

Rear End:

  • Big bearing Ford 9 inch from an 84 F-150 with Currie 35 spline axles
  • Housing was trussed and converted to Chevy 1 ton disk brakes by Pro-Gear in San Diego.
  • Differential, vented to bed cage, rebuilt with Detroit Locker and 4:11 gears installed and set up by Madhouse Mechanical.
  • The rear fuel tank is protected by a ¼” thick Aluminum skid plate.
  • Monster 11/16th inch wheel studs using flanged wheel lug nuts requiring 1 inch and an 1/8th socket to remove.
  • Deaver Q80 leaf packs damped by 16 inch Fox Race Series shocks mounted through the bed into the Bed cage.
  • Threat Motorsports fabricated extended shackles and rear pivot mounts.
  • OEM 4×2 F150 front leaf pivots which comes setup for a 2.5 inch leaf and lowers ride height by an inch.
  • Rear suspension strapped at 20 inches of travel.
  • Custom bed cage made of 1.75” tubing mounted to the frame in four places designed to serve as rear upper shock mounts, a secure location for two 5 gallon fuel jugs and a 37 inch spare tire/wheel in two different configurations vertical and horizontal to allow for loading a dirt bike in addition to the spare if desired.
  • Bed lined for corrosion protection with access panel for rear tank fuel pump service.
  • Flush mount D-rings integrated into the floor of the bed.
  • LED dust light on drivers side of the bed cage and LED strip lights under the bed rails to light up the entire bed after dark.


  • Custom fabbed front bumper made of 2 inch tube styled after Rob Mac’s Rough Rider TT
  • Four old school HELLA lights matching tribute truck.
  • ¼” Alum skid plate in front of a pair of Hella Horns.
  • Custom fabbed rear bumper with integrated hitch, twin LED backup lights and LED license plate bolt lights.
  • Fiberglass bedsides by Hanneman
  • Front fenders by McNeil sectioned and customized by Jorge Garcia of DMJ Customs in Mexicali
  • Tailgate from early 80’s F-150 with custom Raptor style “wing” custom crafted by Jorge Garcia of DMJ Customs in Mexicali.
  • Arctic White paint by Jorge Garcia of DMJ Customs in Mexicali.
  • The truck runs 37 inch BFG A/T’s on classic indestructible forged APP Thunder II wheels custom machined for the monster 11/16″ wheel studs.


  • Switch panel accented with green LED indicator lights installed in place of OEM stereo mount in the dash.
  • Custom console between OEM captain’s chairs built to integrate race radio, green back lit LED gauges and double din stereo head unit along with multiple USB charging ports, audio/video input ports and 15 amp lighter plug power source.  The console also includes home theater style LED back lit stainless drink holders as well as rear facing JL Audio JL12W6-V3 12 inch subwoofer.  The stereo system also includes Alpine speakers in all four OEM locations and is driven by two different amps one running the four Kicker KS Series speakers and one dedicated to drive the subwoofer.
  • All OEM interior lighting replaced with green LED lights including lights behind the gauge cluster. 
  • Console face plate treated with Burnt Bronze Cerakote by Impeccable Coatings.
  • There is two different fuse panels inside the cab to run the lights and accessories, one with constant power and one with power keyed to the ignition.

Wyatt and his father Junior Hinkle next to their completed garage build.

Today with the COVID19 going around and the “shelter in place order” now is the perfect time to get out to the carport and make that dream truck happen. It starts with small mods and as your knowledge grows so does your rig. Build your own masterpiece, its how off-road became what it is today.

Curtis Guise

Well done Curtis. Nice write up and its cool to focus on the "every man" builds

Thanks Dave but I didn't do this feature. @ace_photo Art Eugenio shot this one. When I published it on the homepage and to the forum it put my name here instead of his.

I did shoot another garage build and will have that one posted up soon. Toyota T100 built by Ricky Sanders.


Well-Known Member
Truck looks great!

Total Loss

Well-Known Member
LOL...love this part:

Housing clear coated rather than painted to look bitchin.

Thanks for the write up...enjoy the truck.
While I love the high $$$ builds...can't beat the garage ones for the everyman.

Zac Reish

Well-Known Member
There needs to be more of this. These builds are what created this sport and these builds are what drew me to this sport. This is how my car started. Actually it started way worse LOL!!
Also, it would be cool to see a yearly article on the most dominating race cars in each class. legit pro class.