David Ankin is the CEO of ToyMakerz, Inc. and a former motorcycle stunt rider, race car driver and stuntman. He’s known for his extreme vehicle creations that he personally tests and takes to the limit. ToyMakerz is for those who like exotic, rare toys of the vehicular variety.
The show is driven by the creations David builds and the series follows his team as they bring unrivaled ingenuity and a unique skill set to motorized builds for a wide array of customers. The show is currently in its third season and has caught the attention of millions!
The show follows David's team of custom motor vehicle fabricators that do one-off custom builds & OEM enhancements.
The show incorporates nationally known experts, outside contributors, & celebrity guests. ToyMakerz takes the audience inside the shop with the interactive ToyMakerz companion app: connecting fans to exclusive behind-the-scenes content, info about builds, and exclusive deals.
I'm thrilled that David has agreed to share his secrets to success.
David Ankin on Success
My questions/comments are in bold, David's follow in plain text.
How did you get started in your career?
When I was a kid, I tinkered and played in the shop my father worked in. I would build things from lawnmower parts and pretty much anything I could find.
Building is in my blood.
My Grandfather worked for Studebaker and Packard, and my father worked in the metal and iron industry, both very talented, hardworking men. They’ve taught me the lifestyle of building and how to be kind and love what I do.
What does a typical day look like?
My days are long, but all worthwhile. I wake up early, start my day with coffee, and spend an hour or so on social media and going through emails. Then I take my son to school every day and go straight to the shop.
On the weekends, my son comes with me to the shop, which I thoroughly enjoy every second of. He teaches me, and I teach him.
I'm currently getting ready for SEMA, so my days are longer than usual, but none of this is ‘work’ to me, I love what I do and am humbled to be where I am now. C14-16 Hours a day. I am getting ready for SEMA.
What is one thing you have learned from being successful?
You never realize you’ve ‘Made it,’ being successful is in the eyes of everyone else. I learn every day and strive to always be a better man, a better boss, a better father, and a better husband, and if I can succeed at those things, that’s a success.
Is there a mistake you have made starting that you wish you could change?
One thing I would change and something I’ve learned along the way is not to trust everyone.
There are people out there, in this industry and others that come in your life and they make everything sound miraculous, and they can bring so much to your table, but in reality they’re not trying to help you, they’re trying to get on top themselves, they have ulterior motives that in the long run are not worth losing things in your life for.
I’m a firm believer of keeping a small circle, the people who have started with me are those who have supported me and are selfless, I want the best for them, and they want the best for me, I’m grateful for my circle.
There’s a path for everyone. There is no wrong or right when it comes to building your future, just many lessons along the way.
Everyone around you will say it’s not possible, it’s not gonna work. Don’t listen to anyone but yourself. Be the leader, not a follower, be your human, believe in your dream, and put the right people around you to support it.
Professionally what are you most proud of?
The fact that every day that this career has taught me to be better. I deal with nothing but arrogance and entitlement, and he learns every day that he’s grateful for what he’s had. But be humble. My son is amazing; I’m proud of him, I’m proud of the man he’s becoming
If you could recommend one book to help people be more successful, what would it be, and why.
A Twist of the Wrist by Kieth Code, this book teaches a person how to go fast and be more confident. Many teachings can be applied to be more skilled in life, business, and in your family and to be better be a better human as a whole.
Any upcoming projects you are working on?
Two-seater front engine dragster, the meanest nastiest streetcar on the planet for the STREET, 3000 horsepower.
What does your social media strategy look like, any tips?
This isn’t my foray, but I do make sure to tag all the brands I work with, and I make sure to get back to my fans. I have help from my amazing team, too.
Where can people connect with you online?
How import is fitness to success?
It’s everything, a healthy body and mind is key. I am 55. It's not about a ripped up body, you feel better, it builds your confidence. When you’re healthy in shape, you have more confidence makes a world of difference.
Do you enjoy working out? If not how do you get motivated
Science has long touted the benefits of building strength and staying fit, among them better brain health, lower risk of cardiovascular disease, and improved self-confidence and outlook on life. For a non-stop toy junkie with a need for speed, physical health is not a luxury – it’s an absolute necessity
Do you have anything you would like to promote or tell us about?
People need to be good. It makes the world better as a whole.
Also, stay tuned for Season 4, ToyMakerz! And, my Digital Fast Society, a new digital series, instead of a reality show.
The cars are real, the racing it real, it will be great!
What is the best advice you have received?
Slow down, breath; you can’t change what’s coming, in every aspect. Have patience…make the best of today.
What is the one thing you wish everyone knew?
I wish everyone knew to be good, concentrate on what’s good in your life, not what’s bad. Concentrate on yourself being a better person; all else will fall into place.
Michael launched Your Money Geek to make personal finance fun. He has worked in personal finance for over 20 years, helping families reduce taxes, increase their income, and save for retirement. Michael is passionate about personal finance, side hustles, and all things geeky.