Patience, hard work and a little bit of luck brought William Bailey and his family together to build this one-of-a-kind 1986 Mazda B2000. About six years ago, Will and his wife, Erin, were attending Southeastern MiniTruckin Nationals in Maggie Valley, North Carolina, when she won a set of bags at the show. As soon as they found out what she had won, they both started joking that they would have to build a truck. A few weeks passed, and Will came across the Mazda for sale. He is now the second owner of the truck as the man who bought it originally purchased it brand new in 1986. Some would say it was luck, but Will and his family believe it was meant to be for them to build this truck. In fact, the truck was built the same year Will was born.
Once Will got the truck home to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, he immediately began working on it. The truck had over 300,000 miles on it, so Will knew he had his hands full with this build.
“The easiest part of the build was the frame and body drop,” Will says, and he was right!
Within a week, he had it bodied before it was even bagged. He shaved the full frame to make this truly a one-of-a-kind build. He was able to body the truck with a special cut to fit the factory carpet without there being a step. Once he had it bodied, Will and his family began planning exactly how they wanted this truck to turn out when it was completed. One thing was for sure: They wanted to bring back the old school traditional mini-truck vibe.
After getting the truck bagged and bodied, Will moved on to the rest of the bodywork. Will had a plan and got to work. He shaved the fuel door, tailgate, badge holes and antenna. Will wanted to make sure he had clean lines to work with later on in the build, especially when it came to paint. All bodywork and frame modifications were all completed by himself.
“The most difficult part of the build was the small area that I had to build the truck,” Will says. “I had a small, single-bay garage and a very small backyard.”
Even with the tight working spaces, Will continued with the build. His wife and kids were there supporting him and cheering him on. Another difficult part of the build for Will was the access to parts.
“I did not have new parts,” he says. “It was all scrap metal that I had laying around. I was able to take the scrap metal and form it into the parts and pieces that I needed.”
As the days and weeks rolled on, the build began to take shape. Will swapped out the front bumper to a ’90s Toyota front end and chrome Mazda grille. He tubbed the front and rear wheelwells for the ultimate custom look when the truck is aired out. Will swapped out the OEM front shocks to VW Beetle shocks and left the rear shocks alone, and changed the fuel tank to a fuel cell.
The truck was starting to come together so it was time for an overhaul on the motor and transmission. The truck has an ’86 Mazda 2.0L Inline 4 under the hood. Will added a Weber 32/36 carburetor and Pace Setter headers to make this truck sound mean while it’s cruising down the street. The exhaust is all custom with a side exit under the rear left wheelwell. The transmission is all original to the truck; it just needed a little TLC to be ready to drive. Will did all of the engine and transmission work himself making sure everything was safe and secure for his family. Once the engine and transmission work were completed, Will and his family decided on a new set of wheels. They ultimately decided on 18-inch Raceline Surge wheels with spike lug nuts to set the truck off.
Will and Erin knew exactly where to go when it came time for paint. Tom Rock and Creston West at Rock Solid Fabrications in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, brought their A-game on the paint. Volcano Lava Red paint was sprayed first and then the multi-colored graphics were added to really highlight the traditional mini-truck theme of the truck. The rear drive axle was also smoothed and painted along with the custom airbrushing on the driveshaft. This is really where the truck gets its name because Will’s family was such a big part of the paint design. Each part of the graphics has a meaning behind it as it ties into their family. They each chose colors and designs to add to the graphics.
“I love the fact that my wife and three kids” handprints are in the paint work,” Will says. “The most sentimental part of the build would have to be that I did it with my family. It shows a part of our lives we worked so hard to get to which was building our lives together.”
This build was truly a family affair and turned out amazing.
After the paint and graphics had been added, it was time to move on to the interior. Will started with Iron Ace Bombers seats which really stand out against the smoothed Volcano Lava Red painted dash. Next, he swapped out the steering wheel for a billet Forever Sharp wheel. Since Will wanted to keep some of the truck original, he left the instrumentation and gauges stock. A custom truck needs a clean loud stereo. Will installed a Pioneer double din radio and a 6500-watt DS18 system in the truck to give it some “bump!” Custom two-tone door panels and metal window cranks were added to the doors as well. The bright red carpet contrasts to the black door panels and metal seats and cup holders. The shift knob is a work of art and ties nicely with the Forever Sharp steering wheel. As Will buttoned up the final touches on the interior, the truck was finally complete. A few decals here and there and, of course, his Freaks of Nature logo on the back window finalized the build.
Will, Erin and their three kids could finally stand back and look at the masterpiece their family had created together. A total of five long years had been spent on building the truck. Now, it was time for them to get out and enjoy it. From cruising it down the strip in Maggie Valley at Southeastern MiniTruckin Nationals to taking it to local shows, Will and his family have a blast showing the truck. Although the build was difficult and came with a lot of problems, Will’s supportive family kept him motivated and focused. A family that builds together, stays together!