Farm Show Magazine
2022 - Volume #46, Issue #2, Page #03
Truck Wrap Ignites Social Media
Dylan Mercier’s idea of painting his semi-tractor bright red and wrapping his grain trailer in a flaming fire rescue scene has lit up social media. The 21-year-old Illinois resident didn’t plan on all the attention he got after a story ran in the local newspaper, but now he’s leveraging it to support a cause that he’s passionate about.
Mercier’s story about the decked-out 2005 Mack truck and trailer attracted thousands of views on social media and caught the attention of Adam Knight at First Gear, an Iowa company that produces die-cast replicas of trucks and other vehicles. He contacted Mercier, who interestingly had collected die-cast truck replicas for several years. One visit led to another, and plans were made for a die-cast version of Mercier’s vehicle.
Knight says the truck’s design is extremely unique and he thinks the replica will be a hot collector’s item. “Most of our replicas are contracted by companies who want a special keepsake for brand name recognition,” Knight says, “but Dylan will be selling his model with a portion of the proceeds going to support firefighters.”
Knight says the reproduction will replicate the tractor and trailer down to its finest details. “We’ve been working on tooling for the cab and getting the designs just right for the toolbox, wheel guards and the hood insignia, which shows a Mack bulldog wearing firefighter’s gear. The finished 1/64 scale die-cast will be stunning.”
The tractor color scheme and the large trailer graphic, which Knight says are very detailed, will be painted with sophisticated laser equipment. The finished models will be hand-assembled, packaged and ready for distribution.
Mercier, who’s had a passion for firefighters since he began following in his father’s volunteer firefighting footsteps, is funding the project and will order about 500 units initially. He intends to market them locally and online.
As a 14 yr. old, Mercier joined the cadet program of the St. Anne, Ill., Fire Protection District. He also works for his family’s irrigation business and hauls grain with his own truck.
Mercier says he initially wanted his 2005 Mack semi-tractor painted red to show his allegiance to firefighting. That idea expanded into wanting a painted trailer, which turned out to be too expensive. Eventually, he worked with Chad Brosseau of Fastlane Wraps to produce a stunning and fiery decal for the grain trailer.