By Matthew Guy
“It’s not a truck if you don’t use it!” he groused, railing against the Silverado and F-150 garage queens that lined the suburban street. My father has never been the type to rant and rave, but seeing driveway after driveway filled with pickup trucks that would never see a sod in their bed really seemed to grind his gears.
Perhaps it was his (and later, my own) rural upbringing. Eking a living from the sea while clinging to the edge of a rock set square in the middle of the North Atlantic ocean tends to imbue one with a rather strong work ethic. My grandfather’s parade of trucks (always a regular cab, always standard shift) were well maintained but saw many hard days of work. Lobster traps soaked with salt water, briny fishing equipment, and cords of hard Newfoundland wood all conspired to lay waste to every bed of every truck the man owned.
Now, mercifully, products exist to help extend the life of our trucks. LINE-X is a spray-on coating that covers the bed of a truck to act as a durable bedliner.
In the middle of July, LINE-X took their show on the road with a couple of customer events in Montreal and Toronto. In addition to showing off a raft of products coated with LINE-X, the company also brought along their gonzo Toyota Tundra corporate truck. Customized for last year’s SEMA show in Vegas, the LINE-X Tundra looks super, as if the builders said “Yes, please” to one of each accessory in the LINE-X Truck Gear catalog.
The Tundra Crewmax truck was almost completely fabricated by Kenny Pfitzer – the former build master and design brainpower behind world famous custom projects from West Coast Customs and Chip Foose in years past – and his team at Zero to 60 Designs. The truck is also outfitted with a LINE-X spray-in bedliner and accessories from the LINE-X Truck Gear catalog, including drop down steps, a low profile crossover toolbox, and custom floor liners. Pfitzer’s team also completely fabricated the roof rack, grille, tailgate details, and leather seats.
The entire exterior of the SEMA Tundra is sprayed in LINE-X, using an exterior coating called Ultra that they started distributing about a year ago. Its composition allows an installer to spray in and around tight spots like door jambs, plus it can be tinted in different colours to the customers’ specifications.
Not just wanting to have a truck that is all-show and no-go, LINE-X also installed a supercharger and other under-the-hood goodies, cranking up the power to over 500 horses. With a custom LINE-X grille on its snout, rumbling V8 exhaust—and an unmistakable supercharger whine that sounds like God’s own Kitchen-Aid mixer—the Tundra drew plenty of attention on its drive of the 401 between Montreal and Toronto.
Speaking to Dennis Weese, Corporate President for LINE-X, he explained how the company has expanded its market into areas never previously considered.
“Embracing non-automotive applications has been huge. At Niagara Falls for example, an environment with super-high humidity and salty air, we were asked to LINE-X some of their infrastructure like light fixtures and wrought-iron fencing. LINE-X provided a more permanent solution, extending the life-cycle of these items and saving the group money by not having to pay workers to repaint those items every year.”
At one of the events, the strength of LINE-X was demonstrated by having a person stand on a soda can sprayed with the coating. “Our two component system,” said Mr. Weese, “is mixed together under high pressure and heat, creating a molecular bond with great tensile strength.”
This helps to explain the deployment of their PAXCON product, a coating used by military and defense organizations. Standing up to the equivalent of 1000lbs of TNT in third-party testing, the product isn’t actually bulletproof but it will hold the fragmentation of an object – like an impacted bullet or exploded wall – preventing those type of blast injuries.
“It works really well in tandem with armoured plating.” explained Mr. Weese, “We sell to vendors who supply the DoD, where it’s used to coat personal body armour and armoured plating for vehicles.”
Which brings us neatly back to trucks, and the awesome custom Toyota Tundra CrewMax that LINE-X created for SEMA last year. Sprayed with their new ULTRA coating, its eye-catching smooth texture and tinted colour sets it apart from the days when off-roaders would ingeniously cover their rides with rugged but rough-surfaced traditional bed coatings. With the ability to colour-match factory hues, or just about any other shade, the LINE-X Ultra coating makes for a striking appearance … not to mention the rust, dent, and corrosion protection it provides.
Rust, dents, and corrosion? Sounds like a checklist of features on every single one of my grandfather’s old trucks. Perhaps if LINE-X had been around all those years ago, Pop wouldn’t have had to buy a new GMC every three or four years.
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