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Cooter's Tow Truck


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There's been an important vehicle missing from this thread, and it's got to have been the hardest Fan Art project so far. I'd always intended to do one of Cooter's tow trucks, but had been putting it off because I knew the wrecker assembly would be complicated. I picked the GMC truck for a couple of reasons; it didn't have the separate towing dolly, and I've already done a Ford F-Series (Uncle Jesse's truck), so I fancied something different.

I originally started out back in August. Unfortunately, after a fair bit of work, my computer decided it didn't want to re-open the file or the backup. I started again, and the same thing happened. This time I saved it out to different files and formats along the way, and had no problems at all. As they say, "third time lucky" :). The large rear dually wheels mean that everything is slanted at a 2.5 degree angle, which certainly made lining things up a lot harder. I decided to model the checker plate as accurately as possible, but that brought the total number of elements up to around 15,000.

I must have used over 60 reference pictures, and they showed that at least two different GMC trucks were used. The main differences are the lights: sometimes the cab roof lights are circular, others they are teardrops; the main beacon changes design, and the lights either side also change (including the way they are supported); the rear light panel has two distinct designs. The truck is sometimes very clean (as seen here), while other times it's covered in dirt. The license plate moves from the back to wrecker support. There are two different mirror designs. Lastly (I think), there are sometimes chains hanging off the back - for simplicity I left these out. You may even spot a few more. Although it didn't appear in the show, I've added the manufacturer emblem to the hood (as with I've done with other Fan Art projects). I didn't have a good reference photo of the winch, so I copied another one. All the other features you see here have appeared in the show, but not necessarily on the same truck :).



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I thought I'd have a go at Cooter's van from 'Uncle Boss' (the one he uses to hide Hughie's VW). As far as I can tell it's a Flxible Southern body on an unknown chassis (see this post for more pictures). I started off with just the rear panel before convincing myself to do the whole side view. I may add front and back views at a later date. I wonder if they even painted the other side because it's never seen on screen. The eagle-eyed amongst you may spot that I've just modified the wheels from the tow truck - we don't get a particularly clear look at the wheels, so I figured these were close enough.


I spotted this picture online during the week. It looks like Cooter's repair standards are really slipping - just look what he's done to Uncle Jesse's pickup :). Believe it or not I've discovered that this picture was taken on Burbank Blvd, only about one and a half miles from WB's studios.


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A while ago, Mark B asked me if I'd ever done a front and back view of Cooter's van from 'Uncle Boss'. At the time I hadn't, but now I have :).


There are still very few reference photos available, so I just had to do my best from screengrabs. I've also tweaked the original side view to fix some minor details.



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