independent suspension


While early Toyota trucks are a great foundation, they do require a few modifications to make them capable of serious off-road use. Sure, you’ll need the basics, such as larger tires, lower gears and some kind of traction-aiding device in the differentials, but first there is a more important issue at hand. The steering on these early Toyota trucks was not designed with hardcore off-road use in mind.


It was a sketch published in another street rod title, and while it brought many interesting comments, to our knowledge no one acted on the sketch to convert it to a real roadster. Enter Sam Magarino of Sussex, New Jersey. Now, Magarino likes hot rods, and lately he has enjoyed building some pretty outrageous hot rods with the help of Barry Lobeck and his crew at Lobeck’s. This would be a project of great magnitude, and that was the name aptly applied to this car for the show season.

Independent at Last

“Real hot rods have axles,” or so they say. That was our story, and we stuck to it fondly for more than 10 years. The ’47 Ford sedan delivery we drive came to us with a new Super Bell dropped axle and four-bar linkage professionally installed by Dick Jones’ shop in Campbell, California. It wasn’t really a hot rod; more like a primered beater with no interior, very little glass and enough rattles that a radio was a waste of time. It was a project car for another magazine for several years, and as such was the subject of many tech articles, updating it with all manner of great stuff. But it was still a primered beater, so the axle suited it just fine, and we got many miles of enjoyment out of this setup.  Oh, it could have had a nice, new IRS more than once, but it just wasn’t that kind of car. 

Scroll to Top