TAKING THE LEAD, ONE BOLT AT A TIME
Sometimes, revenge can be fun. That statement is definitely true for Ashley Wimmer of Princeton, West Virginia. For many years, Ashley always had the dependable car. Her husband, Nate Wimmer, on the other hand, would get to buy all of the toys and fun vehicles. After sitting back for several years and watching Nate build some pretty amazing vehicles, Ashley decided it was her time to shine and show Nate that she can build an outstanding truck, too. Boy did she come out swinging with this one!
Ashley originally purchased the ’86 Chevrolet S-10 in 2019.
“The condition of the truck was decent, but it had started showing some age,” Ashley says. “The truck had some wear and tear from being driven over the years and needed a lot of freshening up and some swag!”
Ashley has always had a love for older vehicles, saying they have “more stories and character to discover.” This build would mean a lot to her since this was her first mini-truck project to tackle. It would add her own story to it.
Once Ashley got the truck in their garage, they immediately got to work. First things first for her was the engine. This wasn’t going to be your typical S-10 motor swap. Ashley was going all the way with this build, so she decided to drop a 1970 4-bolt main Chevrolet 350 V-8 motor under the hood. She had a little help when making the decision about which engine she wanted for the truck.
“My dad inspired the small block Chevy motor as he took me to my first ever drag race when I was little,” Ashley says.
All custom motor mounts were fabbed up to fit this massive motor under the hood of the truck. The engine was also going to be torn down so it could receive a few upgrades. Forged pistons, a steel crank and Edelbrock intake manifold were installed to give the truck some extra horsepower. They also added an Edelbrock carburetor and Headman headers before finishing up the motor swap. Since Ashley started in drag cars, she knew her S-10 would need an exhaust upgrade. They installed a full 2.5-inch Flowmaster Exhaust under the truck with the exit being dumped under the cab. This truck was going to sound mean as Ashley puts petal to the metal!
With the added power and larger motor, a transmission swap was absolutely necessary. The original transmission was removed to make room for a ’70 350 turbo transmission. For everything to line up perfectly, they had to custom make a transmission crossmember. While they were under the truck, they installed a Thorbeck raised gas tank crossmember as well. Luckily, the frame modifications had been completed by Darrell Poe before Ashley purchased the truck. The stock frame was clean and able to be modified for the air-ride system. A Thorbeck Bros three-link was installed first so the rest of the suspension could be added. They then installed SMC valves along with Viair 460 compressors. Belltech drop spindles and Thorbeck tubular control arms were installed after the custom C-notch was complete. They installed Firestone airbags in the front and rear for the best ride quality possible.
Now that the engine and transmission swaps were complete, Ashley moved on to the exterior of the truck. REVENGE was starting to take shape. The S-10 was going to receive a full facelift all the way around. A Trenz grille was installed along with LED headlights. Custom made front inner wheel tubs were added to give this truck the perfect stance when aired out. The front bumper was shaved smooth with the French tag box. The truck then received a full sheetmetal bed with wood floor inserts.
A lot of hours were spent in the garage preparing the truck for the new bed. However, this is Ashley’s passion, and nothing was going to stand in her way.
“I have enjoyed watching and helping my husband and his friends with their builds for many years,” she says. “I decided it was time for my own build, and I would do whatever it took to complete it.”
Keeping her word, she continued to work on the bed until it was finished. Even though this was Ashley’s revenge toward her husband, he was right there in the garage to support her every move. They then shaved and relocated the gas door and shaved the wiper cowl. A set of Chevrolet Coupe taillights were then added to the bed of the truck. Ashley knew this truck needed a good set of wheels to match her style. She ultimately decided on a set of 18-inch Billet Specialties Speedways, which were then wrapped in Achilles ATR Sport tires. These wheels give the truck a perfect stance and match her throwback theme of the entire build. This is where Ashley’s design really started to take shape.
Ashley’s S-10 was finally ready for paint. This build has a lot of sentimental value to Ashley.
“Not only did I get to build the truck with my husband, but we also got to use my late friend Eric’s paint gun to get the base color laid on the truck,” she says.
Ashley knew just who to call when it came to paint. They dropped the truck off with Andy Hawks of Cana, Virginia, who started off by laying down the gray base color. This wasn’t going to be your ordinary paint job! Full multicolored airbrushed graphics were added from front to back.
“My favorite thing that we changed on the truck was the paint. We went from plain to ‘XTREMEly unique,” Ashley says.
Ashley’s inspiration for this build is portrayed throughout the entire truck.
“The purple stripe in the graphics is some of the leftover paint from my husband’s first mini-truck magazine feature build,” she says. “It is also how Nate and I originally met. The bright colors and skulls were ideas put together from my daughter and sidekick, Kaitlynn, alongside the painter, Andy Hawks.”
As REVENGE rolled out of the booth for the first time, Ashley was finally able to see her ideas and dreams coming to life.
The S-10 was nearing the final stages as they started on the interior. The upholstery work was completed by Kenny Franklin of Princeton, West Virginia. The dash was shaved and fiberglassed to create a smooth surface for the next part of the build. A custom center console was fabbed up that would house a set of Viair air gauges and switches.
“The trucker switches are for my sister who has always been into 18-wheelers,” Ashley says.
The entire dash and center console were then wrapped in gray tweed to bring back the ’90s style. The Hurst Zmatic shifter blends Ashley’s love of drag racing with mini-trucks.
“I have always been a gearhead at heart,” she says. “It started out with semis and drag cars.”
She then removed the original steering wheel and installed a B.A.D. billet steering wheel to match the wheels. Stuart Warner gauges were installed into the dash to finish off her custom design. The door panels were then wrapped in tweed to match the rest of the interior. Next up, it was time for a sound system. An Alpine head unit fits perfectly alongside the DVD player and TV screen that were molded into the dash. A true flashback to the ’90s mini-truck era! A custom fiberglass subwoofer box was then molded into the cab and painted gray to match the exterior of the truck. Two 10-inch Alpine Type E subs were hooked up to give Ashley a little bump in the trunk!
Ashley’s REVENGE was finally complete after a year of hard work and determination. She didn’t disappoint with this impressive first build! Although the project is done, Ashley still has plans in the future to body drop the truck and add a set of custom seats to match the rest of the interior. Ashley’s sweet REVENGE always brings a smile to her face as she hops in the S-10 to cruise the open roads!
’86 Chevrolet S-10
’70 Chevrolet 350 V-8 4-bolt main
Edelbrock intake manifold
2.5-inch Flowmaster Exhaust
’70 350-turbo transmission
Thorbeck Bros three-link rear air suspension kit
Custom step notch
Belltech drop spindles
Thorbeck tubular control arms
Custom transmission crossmember
Thorbeck Bros raised gas tank crossmember
Viair 460 compressors
Trenz front grille
Custom made front inner wheel tubs
Shaved and smoothed front bumper
Frenched in tag box
Sheetmetal bed with wood floor inserts
Shaved and relocated gas door
Shaved wiper cowl
18-inch Billet Specialties Speedway
Achilles ATR sport tires
Shaved and fiberglassed dashboard
custom center console
Viair air gauges
Hurst Zmatic shifter
B.A.D. billet steering wheel
Stuart Warner gauges
10-inch Alpine Type E subs