Everything Old is Rad Again
Back in the day when names like Tinker Juarez, Perry “PK” Kramer, Travis Chipres and even Dennis McCoy ruled magazines such as BMX Action and BMX Plus, the raddest of the rad used trucks to carry their bikes to the track or legendary spots like Pipeline or Del Mar.
The ride of choice for most seemed to be the Toyota 4×4, with the occasional lowered Nissan 720 for guys like Mike Dominguez. But, if you had a bigger budget you might go for a C10, and if you had a mega budget like the owners of Mongoose (a.k.a., Skip Hess and Billy “Bones” Miller), you went for a C20 Suburban and turned it into a team hauler.
As one of the dudes at Squarebody Syndicate and a BMX rider, Joey Carberry couldn’t think of anything better than to combine his love for trucks and bikes with a tribute to one of the most iconic brands in BMX, Mongoose. Named after the late, great drag racer Tom “Mongoose” McEwen, the company’s reputation for speed challenged that of ‘Goose’s own funny cars.
The Mongoose moniker is especially sentimental to us, as Tom worked behind the scenes at Street Trucks for many years and was always willing to share from his treasure trove of racing stories. So when we first found out that Joey was building this truck, we eagerly followed along until it was complete.
Starting with an ’85 C10 Scottsdale shorty, Joey sought out the help of Cameron Kotowski, as well as Ray Pickard at Pic Motorsports, to get the truck’s attitude just right. Ray installed the front drop member, and Cameron installed a Tre 5 Customs “bolt on bodydrop,” which drops the cab mounts and flattens the frame dip on later squarebody trucks. Using a trick that’s become increasingly more popular in recent years, the truck was converted to 6-lug to be able to use modified 22-inch GM transport wheels, which were especially cut to look like rally wheels by Scott at GSI Machine & Fabrication.
The truck was then prepped for some new paint by Dave Melian, who sprayed copious amounts of white on the cab and bed. The amazing Mongoose livery, supplied by Low Sierra Company, was then applied to mimic the original Team Mongoose Suburban, which was painted by Bill Carter and lettered by Steve Stanford back in the 1980s.
Rob Yezzi, Joe Yezzi and Empire Upholstery took care of refurbishing and re-dying the original interior, except for the dash pad, which was replaced with a new one. The original steering wheel was also swapped out for a matte black Eddie Motorsports wheel that is very reminiscent of the stock wheel’s two-wheel design. We appreciate the extra effort involved in reviving the original parts, rather than just buying new stuff!
The engine compartment followed the same theme. For now, the original 305 V-8 is doing just fine and has been given an RV-spec cam for additional torque, but remains stock aside from cosmetic enhancements. Joey says that he may eventually go with an LS swap, but the ol’ 5.0-liter has been nothing short of reliable while mated to the original 700R4.
Joey’s truck has been seeing tons of miles judging by his Instagram page, and we’re sure it’s going to keep getting refined as time goes on. He keeps an assortment of vintage and newer Mongoose bikes in his garage, depending on whether he wants to bring one along for a show or head on down to the local skatepark. Does it get any more rad than that?