Giddyupz started out as a smarter way for shorter people to haul themselves up into pickup cabs. Automakers have grab handles in the cab, but they’re not enough for many people, because pickups—especially 4x4s—have gotten almost comically high off the ground.
Who’s behind this invention, whose seeming simplicity comes after 200 varying prototypes and thousands of hours of development? John Wayne—that is, John Wayne Yakimyshyn. He isn’t the movie actor with the trademarked name, but he is a real-life horse wrangler who worked in Hollywood with Western stars like Clint Eastwood.
John Wayne Yakimyshyn was born and raised in rural Canada; he worked at a car dealership before moving to Hollywood to work in the movie and TV trade. Five years ago, he saw an older woman trying to get into a Ram 3500 4×4 in the –30°F Alberta weather; she was trying to reach the factory grab handle with her hand stretched over her head, by bouncing up and down on the ice-covered side step. John had plenty of time to work on the idea, because shortly afterwards, he was thrown from a horse on the set of a TV series. He started working on GiddyUpz! in the hospital waiting for broken ribs to heal.
All Giddyupz have been made in North America and there are no plans to make them elsewhere. They were, in John’s words, “invented out of tragedy to make your life better. Our products just make cowboy common horse sense!”
Giddyupz are not just for getting into trucks. A family member uses one to get into a ProMaster van. John also developed the GiddyUpz Rapunzel for helping seniors who fall down in their home to get up or to get out of the bath.
Giddyupz are made of tough, high-quality leather, with tough, high-quality fittings. They are easy to install, with a newbie able to install them in 90 seconds and no instructions (which are available). They seem to be capable of taking quite a bit of weight, and work without creaking or other noises.
All the currently available designs are shown in the photo; they can be ordered from TruckKing in Toronto using Stellpower’s convenient form; the cost is currently $50 (USD) for unpadded versions or $75 for padded versions. John hand-made all the GiddyUpz! currently for sale. He has plans under way for other distributors and for manufacturing by a highly reputable Texas boot-and-saddle maker. Those wishing to reach John personally can use this form: