About Dragon’s Fyre

The Dragon's Fyre Jet Truck is a jet-powered 1940 Ford pick-up truck and is the only one like it in the world. Dave Modder came up with the concept of an old-school, early-40's jet-powered pickup several years ago.

The Problem: the cabs on the old style pickup trucks are very narrow, preventing the jet engine from being set next to the driver. Dave thought by extending the bed of the truck, the engine could be entirely placed behind the cab. Also, the original '40 Ford had only a 118 inch wheelbase. We extended the wheelbase to 135 inches for better handling as well as lengthening the box to 7 feet to accommodate the engine and afterburner. The top of the cab is only 52 inches off the ground. This gives the truck a custom hot rod appearance…long and low. We added a NASCAR COT style chin spoiler to prevent lift and added vents on the back of the fenders to allow air to escape. The roof has strakes to give lateral directional stability. A rear wing provides down-force, 4 'trap door' vents on the tailgate allow air to escape from the box.

The body: Down’s Industries, Lawton, Michigan constructed the all fiberglass custom 1940 Ford body. It has been chopped 3 inches and channeled 7.5 inches on the custom built tube chassis. Also, the hood and front fenders are a one-of-a-kind, one-piece creation.

The chassis: Competition Fabrications, St. Charles, Illinois. Dave brought his ideas to CompFab and in a year’s time the vehicle was completed. The chassis, body mounting, tin work, and fabricating were completed by CompFab and Dave, with Dave assisting hands on almost the entire build.

The paint: Z-Rodz & Customs, Knox, Indiana. Many, many hours of body work, plus blocking and sanding the fiberglass body to perfection prior to painting were completed by Zach Ingram and crew. Zach previously worked for Hirata’s Custom Shop before starting out on his own. This was Zach’s first in-house project. Zach produced a show-quality, flawless paint job that has already won awards in several car shows. The red base coat has pearl added, as well as ghosted-in flames.

Final assembly: After painting Dave did all the final assembly including wiring, plumbing, engine installation and everything else that needed to be done at his shop in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin.

The engine: General Electric J-85 after-burning turbo jet engine. Commonly used in T-38’s as well as the civilian version (CJ-610) being used in the 20 series Lear Jets.

Truck Specifications:

Built in :



General Electric J-85-17

Truck Weight:

1,550 pounds


17 feet long, 135 inch wheelbase

Fuel capacity:

30 gallons


Kerosene or Jet A


Approximately 6,000 pounds in burner

Fuel Consumption:

2 gallons per second when in afterburner