All That's Trucking

Ever Wish You Had a Life-Size Tonka Truck? [VIDEO]

July 17, 2013

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There's a good chance you played with Tonka trucks as a kid. But one Wisconsin man has turned that childhood love into a real-life labor of love and created a life-size Tonka tow truck.

This unusual vehicle is a life-size replica of a Tonka tow truck.
This unusual vehicle is a life-size replica of a Tonka tow truck.

As KARE 11 TV reports from Menomonie, Wis., Brad Doane, third-generation at Irvington Garage Towing, built a 16-foot-long, 10-foot-tall, 2-ton life-size fabrication of a vintage Tonka Mighty Wrecker from the late '60s/early '70s.

"To own a towing service is to covet trucks like a skinned-kneed boy," says reporter Boyd Huppert.


His creation even has its own website,, with a slideshow tracing the creation of the truck and more pages filled with photos and newspaper clippings from the history of Irvington Garage.

Though the truck is fully functional and a registered vehicle, it won't be towing many cars. Like the toy it's based on, its winch has a hand crank. But it's a great attention-getter for the company. This weekend, Doane will drive it in the Spirit of the Lakes parade in Mound, Minn., the birthplace of Tonka Toys.

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Deborah Lockridge


All That's Trucking blog is just that – the editor's take on anything and everything related to trucking, with the help of guest posts from other HDT editors. Author Deborah Lockridge's career as an award-winning trucking journalist started in 1990.


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