The KDS Van: Part 3

Photography: Luke Ray.

Visit number three in the KDS van saga, and it was time to flake. Karl had been busy prepping his Bedford CF for paint. By the time I arrived to shoot, he’d already silver flaked the whole front clip and the dash. On the morning of my visit, Karl was just doing the past preparations for painting the right side of the van that day.

Not long after I had arrived and unpacked, and off he went. Some final rub-downs on the driver’s door, a few mark-ups of apertures and wheels and he was on it. First went the solid silver. A couple of coats of that and the van was already coming to life. A cuppa tea later, the sky was clear and the sun had his hat on so the CF was taken outside, right side perpendicular to the sunshine for the full natural baking effect. Teas down, the flake was loaded up.

I’d seen Karl in action before, but mostly sitting at a table, striping brush in hand, fiercely concentrating on laying down details on a helmet or fender for a complex design. But I’d never seen him, or anyone for that matter, cover the entire side of a van in heavy metal flake silver paint right in front of me in a matter of minutes. Layer upon layer, the van was sparkling more and more with each pass.

It was an impressive couple of hours, for sure. But nothing near as impressive as this van will be when it’s finished. She has been officially named by Karl. The ‘Green Wizard’ will make its debut at the Chopped Rod & Custom show in Newstead, Victoria this October (there you go Karl, it’s in print now so you have to make the deadline) and the final paint scheme will be a sight to behold. Karl was describing to me panels, fades, flames, murals, colours whilst dancing around the van enthusiastically telling me where everything was going to go. Most of it was going over my head, but it’s clear that Karl has his vision for the Green Wizard, and I think we all know it’s going to be one impressive debut.

This article first appeared in Fuel Magazine issue 20.

Follow Karl: @kdsdesigns.

Luke RayVan, Custom, Australia