By the time you read this, the opportunity for a unique Father’s Day gift will have passed, but if you are after something for the truck driver that has everything, perhaps a custom-built, Kenworth inspired barbecue/fire pit might fit the bill nicely.
The ‘truck’ as it is referred to, is the brainchild of metal fabricator Mark Toll, who put it together in his Wodonga workshop, with the creation sporting a firepit behind the cabin and a grill/barbecue plate mounted over the top.
Toll built the truck after starting out with a few chalk lines on the floor and ‘a bit of a rough idea in his head’, having attempted a similar vehicular-based project a couple of years ago.
“We built a rat-rod vehicle which we took to an event to display, and it sold even though it wasn’t actually for sale,” Toll said.
“A lot of people had said I needed to build a truck so here it is. It’s functional and good to look at too.”
Toll had a bit of assistance from some connections in the transport industry, with the truck, which is largely made out of recycled steel, sporting genuine Kenworth wheel caps along with Alcoa wheels.
“My father-in-law drives for Fred’s out of Shepparton, so Danny Borg from Fred’s helped out with a few bits and bobs and it went on from there – we pride ourselves on using recycled stuff.
“It’s a bit of a bitser- it’s taken me two years to get it all together. I didn’t really have anything specific I based it off, everyone tells me it resembles a Kenworth K200 so I will go with that.”
While the front wheels are fixed under the cabin, the rear wheels turn making the truck manoeuvrable around the backyard and the grill plate over the fire pit is detachable.
The firepit also sports the famous Kenworth ‘bug’ logo which has been plasma-cut into the sides.
With the truck having been sold and on its way to its new owner in Queensland, Toll has another two on the go which will also be on their way to the Sunshine State.
“The next two are Scanias, so they will have the logos and so forth on them. The customer in Queensland is after two different sizes.
“They want to be able to sit one out the front of their new offices which should get some attention. This one here is certainly an eye-catcher.”
For future production Toll is looking at refining the design but having set out to keep the low-slung rat-rod style with his truck he reckons he has captured the theme pretty well.
“What I will do next time is make some mudguards for it, but I like keeping the low rat-rod look about it, the rat-rods usually have exposed wheels…with the next one I would probably make the front wheels turn also.
“At least this one is portable; you can wheel it around and set it up out in front of the shed in the winter- time and keep it out of the way when you’re not using it.”
Having completed an apprenticeship as a boilermaker-sheetmetal fabricator in Wodonga, Toll worked across the northern parts of the country in the mining and construction industries before returning home to run his own operation, turning out all sorts of metal projects, including pot-belly stoves made out of brake drums among other things.
With the truck having garnered plenty of attention online via Facebook and also by the steady stream of passing traffic, Toll reckons that a truck such as this would make an ideal practical gift for a truckie, or at the very least an interesting piece of garden art.
He is open to orders and can turn his skills to customising to client’s requirements.
“It doesn’t have to be a Kenworth. It can be made to anyone’s liking. We are only limited by the customers imagination.”
For further information check out Toll’s Facebook page, Turbo’s Custom Steel Fab, or drop him a line via email Hipsi.email@example.com.