Hooked Up – The TWMX Staff Truck Gets Some Style

HOOKED UP

The TWMX Staff Truck Gets Some Style

Believe it or not, we’ve managed to wrack up over 10,000 miles on the 2004 Ford F-150 that we tested back in the July issue of TransWorld Motocross, and on that pace, we’re set to hit 40K before the end of the year! During the past few months, we’ve learned a lot more about the trusty F-150, and even had the chance to dial it in a little better to suit our tastes.

As the 5.4l engine has broken in we’ve been pleasantly surprised to find that our gas mileage has improved greatly, averaging 16 mpg in the city and about 20 on the highway; better mileage than even the optimistic EPA ratings. Furthermore, the transmission has smoothed out even more and is now officially the best-shifting truck we’ve ever driven. The cab remains super quiet and does an outstanding job of keeping outside noise muffled, and in spite of the beating we’ve given the vehicle on dirt roads, the F-150 has developed no annoying creaks or rattles inside. Plush!

BRACE THAT BED

Though the F-150’s box is super sturdy and extra large, thanks to its two-inch higher bed sides, the first thing on our agenda was to get a bed brace of some sort bolted into the front of the bed. Universal Engineering produces a super-trick bed rack that is made of extruded 7005 aluminum and adjustable to fit all trucks, big or small. When bolted to the front of our F-150’s cargo box, the Samson Bed Rack serves three purposes: 1. It keeps the front of the bed from bowing forward under the pressure of a cinched-down motorcycle; 2. It offers two wheel chocks that hold the front wheel of the bike secure and prevent it from twisting; 3. It has three easy-to-use, extra-large tie-down fasteners. The Samson Bed Rack was a breeze to install, requiring only 15 minutes, start to finish.

MATTERS OF MUD

Though our F-150 came equipped with some pretty burly rubber floor mats, how could we resist the opportunity to throw some motocross mats in there? N-Style is best known for its top-notch graphics, seat covers and numbers, but they have also ventured into the world of automotive floor mats, casual clothing, and gear bags. How’s that for variety and versatility? Available in red, blue, orange, yellow, and gray, we chose the gray to match the rest of the truck. Cool!

ROLLIN’

Since we ride with Symbolic Luxury Wheels owner Joey Kato almost every weekend, it was easy to hit the Dub Doctor up for a set of his super-high-end wheels. All of Symbolic’s wheels are manufactured and assembled one at a time, by hand, in the United States, and feature a forged, three-piece design. Because of the custom-built nature of the wheels, we were able to request a custom black powder-coated finish on the center portion of our SL-9 wheels, making our 22″ rims look more mean and less “bling.” There isn’t a week that goes by that we don’t answer a dozen questions about the wheels at the track, gas station, etc… As team sponsor of the Boost Mobile/Yamaha/Troy Racing team and personal sponsor of guys like Nick Wey, Grant Langston, Ivan Tedesco, Chad Reed, and Tim Ferry, Symbolic is a company that has some motocross heritage.

Another automotive company that takes great interest in motocross is Toyo Tires, and this is where we turned for a set of Toyo Proxes S/T tires for our rims. Having had Toyo tires on the old Ford Ranger staff truck, we already knew that the Proxes S/T would provide a smooth, quiet ride, with exceptional wear. Toyo Tires can be found on the vehicles of riders like Carey Hart, Brian Deegan, Tommy Clowers, and Grant Langston.

WHO WAS THAT?

Naturally, advertising the magazine is key with a staff vehicle like our F-150, so we called upon Steve Salas at VGI Graphics to help us sticker up our ride. VGI used a high-performance 2mm-thick vinyl to create our logos, which have thus far held up against even the cheap drive-through car wash at the gas station! VGI offers many services, including signs, automotive photo wrapps, banners, graphic design, and even motocross jersey lettering.

10K DOWN, 30 TO GO

With plenty of 2005 bike tests coming up, we’re sure to wrack up even more brutal mileage on our trusty Ford, but at least we’re prepared to travel the highways in extra style now. Stay tuned for more updates and discoveries in future issues…

DIRECTORY

N-STYLE

N-Style Floor Mats $49.95

800/831-9043 | www.n-style.com

SYMBOLIC LUXURY WHEELS

SL-9 Custom-made with black power coated centers $1,750 each

714/895-5972 | www.symbolicwheels.com

TOYO TIRES

Toyo Proxes S/T tires $300 each

www.toyo.com

UNIVERSAL MOTOCROSS

Samson Bed Rack $119.95

909/506-0142 | www.universalmotocross.com

VGI GRAPHICS

Custom lettering design and installation: $495

909/688-8975 | www.vgigraphics.com