American Hot Rod: Wikis


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American Hot Rod
US Navy 050508-N-1205S-085 Television show American Hot Rod car builder Boyd Coddington and his wife Jo signed autographs for Sailors stationed aboard the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68).jpg

Boyd Coddington (r) and his wife Jo from from American Hot Rod sign autographs aboard the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Nimitz in 2005.
Format Documentary
Starring Boyd Coddington
Country of origin United States
Language(s) English
No. of seasons 5
Running time 60 minutes
Production company(s) Pilgrim Films & Television
Original channel The Learning Channel, Discovery Channel
Original run April 23, 2004 (2004-04-23) – March 30, 2008 (2008-03-30)

American Hot Rod was a reality television series that aired on The Learning Channel and Discovery Channel. The crewmembers in the show built hot rods and custom cars in Boyd Coddington’s shop located in La Habra, California. The series showcased the crew of Boyd Coddington, along with their constant struggles to build custom cars under extremely tight deadlines. The show was also well known for its regular firings and constant turnover of crewmembers.

Some of the cars featured in the show were: the Alumatub, Silver Bullet, Vern Luce's coupe, CadZZilla and many more of Boyd Coddington's custom creations. In July 2007, a new series of episodes showcased the build of an Elvis Tribute Car – a 1957 Cadillac sponsored by the Reese’s Company.

Boyd Coddingtons shop closed its doors for the final time Friday June 20th 2008 [1]


Crew members

  • Boyd Coddington: owner, died on February 27, 2008 from complications from recent surgery.
  • Duane Mayer: Shop Manager: now runs his own shop, American Hotrods Inc.
  • Lee Hayes: Metal work
  • Ralph: Body Work
  • Brad: Fabricator/assembler
  • Dan Sobieski: Fabricator/assembler
  • Bernt Karlsson: Body Work


  • Chad "Bluebear" Geary, fired for insubordination during the Rat Rod build-off. Against Boyd's implicit orders, Bluebear insisted on building the car like an old-school hot rods without boxed frame rails.
  • Al Simon: Chassis builder, left after the Rat Rod build-off though subsequently returned to the shop.
  • Charley Hutton: Bodyshop supervisor, dismissed after deciding to do some work for competitor Chip Foose during the 42 Woodie build. Despite offering to return after the work was completed, Boyd said it was a gross breach of trust and told him never to comeback. Hutton later on the show Rides, it said he worked for Chip Foose and won a Ridler Award. Later Hutton appeared on Overhaulin'. He subsequently opened his own custom paint shop in Idaho.
  • Andrew "Beetle Bailey" Petterson: Bodyshop painter, left at the same as Hutton and went to work for Chip Foose.
  • Mike Curtis: Machinist, fired for designing motor cycle wheels for competitor Chip Foose in his free time. Curtis later appeared on Overhaulin'.
  • Roy Schmidt: Metal worker, died, aged 64, after a long battle with lung cancer.
  • Scott Parker: Fabricator, left to work for himself but ended up working for Chip Foose.
  • Thomas Loddby: Fabricator, left to start a shipping business but later returned to work part-time.
  • Willie Johnstone: Bodyshop painter, returned to New Zealand and opened his own custom paint shop in Tauranga.
  • Liz Miles left the company, as claimed by the company's statement, after the show's producer set Liz up to work on Jo’s Hot Rod. But according to Miles's biography, she was asked to leave the company because of issues with Boyd's wife, Jo Coddington.[2] She subsequently joined Popular Hot Rodding magazine as its Tech Editor.[3]

First Season: (2004)

Image Title Original Airdate
"Junkyard Dog Pt 1" January 13, 2004
On this episode of American Hot Rod, Boyd Coddington and his crew resurrect a classic '56 Chevy. Rescued from a rust bucket grave yard, but turning this Junkyard Dog into a high end Hot Rod, pushes tensions to breaking point and puts the Coddington crew's metal to the test. The talents and the tempers, the drama and the drive.
"Junkyard Dog Pt 2" January 24, 2004
Episode number 2 of the series finds the team dealing with extensive metal work problems particular to a car brought forth from the junkyard for resurrection into a hot rod.
"Junkyard Dog Pt 3" February 6, 2004
The "Junkyard Dog" has taken shape. The body is nearly finished and for once they look like they're ahead of schedule. Charlie starts to paint the car but his Dad is ill and passes away he has to leave. The team celebrate Tommy's birthday with a party at Boyd's house.
"Junkyard Dog Pt 4" February 13, 2004
The paintwork is finished, the body remounted and the car is off to Gabes to have the interior done. Gabes pulls out all the stops and finish the car early. The car gets back to Boyd's for the final touches and Charlie arrives back
"Alumatub" (5 Parts) 2004
The team build an aluminium hot rod from scratch.
"32 Hi-Boy Roadster" (4 Parts) 2004
Boyd resurrects a 32 Coupe 'the Coupester' as an educational exercise for the crew.

Second Season: (2004–’05)

Image Title Original Airdate
"65 Ford Mustang" (3 Parts) 2004
The team rebuild a classic Mustang 2+2 fastback rescued from a barn. Boyd names it Crazy Horse. It was to be a birthday present for Scotty Gray's wife Nancy. The crew judge a bikini contest at Hooters bar and help with "Paint Your Heart Out, Anaheim". New members of the crew Sean Dooley and Jimy "Tig" Krauss are both dismissed during the build.
"Rat Rod" (4 Parts) 2004
Bluebear and Boyd compete to build Rat Rods. During the build, Bluebear is dismissed for refusing to follow Boyd's instruction to box the frame rails on safety grounds.
"42 Woodie" (3 Parts) 2005
The team rebuild a 42 Woodie. Fed up of the tight deadlines, Charley leaves to join Chip Foose. Boyd views this as unforgivable disloyalty.
"63 Chevy Corvette Stingray" (3 Parts) 2005
Sean Dove asks Boyd to build a Stingray that will serve as a street car, a show car and a race car. With no one to run the body shop, Duane must supervise both shops while Boyd paints the car himself. Lee joins the team as Roy's assistant.
"Bud Light Car" (3 Parts) 2005
Boyd builds a car for the Budweiser beer company for the launch of the new Bud Light product. He converts a 36 Coupe into a Roadster. Bernt Karlsson joins the crew as manager of the body shop. Al leaves to pursue his own projects.
"Hildebrandt Car" (3 Parts) 2005
Vern Hildebrandt asks Boyd to restore his 34 Roadster. His father Dennis "the Menace" Hildebrandt originally converted it to a Hot Rod in 1954 and raced it. Mike is given the task of leading the restoration.
"59 Chevy Low Rider" (4 Parts) 2005
Boyd buys a 1959 Chevrolet Impala Bel Air and helps the crew to transform it into a California-style speedster. Rocky Walker intends to present the "Ghetto Princess" and its matching motorcycle at Camp Pendleton to the US Marines heading for a tour of Iraq. During the build, Mike is found to be moonlighting for Chip Foose and is dismissed.

Third Season: (2005)

Image Title Original Airdate
"Make-A-Wish Car" (3 Parts) 2005
Boyd's crew build the “MaxHEMI”, a street rod designed by 17 year old Max Cohen, who is fighting leukaemia. The car is based on a 1963 Dodge Polara shell with a 472 CID Hemi crate motor. During the build, Duane gets a tattoo dedicated to Max. Thomas takes part in a gravity race at Monterey in a soapbox racer built by the crew in their spare time. Thomas leaves to concentrate on his shipping business.

Fourth Season: (2006)

Image Title Original Airdate
"54 Corvette and 55 Chevy" (3 Parts) 2006
The team struggle to complete not one, but two cars for the annual SEMA show, a 1954 Corvette and a 1955 Chevrolet. On top of that, they have to help Boyd's son Chris to complete a Honda for the same show. Thomas returns to help Boyd as he is short on men. Roy passes away during this build and Boyd dedicates the '54 Corvette to him.
"56 Chevy Convertible" (3 Parts) 2006
Boyd Coddington gets an order from John Sullivan to make a Boyd Coddington style on his '56 convertible.

Boyd hires 3 new employees. One of them was Tony and "Screwie-Louie" Biegler, the new sheetmetal man.

"61 Impala Bubbletop" (4 Parts) 2006
The team starts to nosedive - Brad goes AWOL, Scott quits to start his own business and Tony is injured in a serious car accident. Will there be enough staff left to finish the build?
"40 Ford" (3 Parts) 2006
The 40 Ford proves to be a tough build as more work is needed than was expected and a lack of employees jepeordise the progress of the car. It's left down to Duane to pull the team together.
"36 Roadster" (3 Parts) 2006
"44 Woodie" (3 Parts) 2006
"31 Truck" (3 Parts) 2007
"57 Chevy" (3 Parts) 2007
A 1957 Chevrolet is turned into a Hot Rod by Boyd and his crew for the 50th anniversary of the O'Reilly Auto Parts Company. The car was sold at the anniversary and all the money was given to charity.

Fifth Season: (2007)

Image Title Original Airdate
"Hershey" (3 Parts) July 2007
Build of a 1957 Cadillac Coupe de Ville as an Elvis tribute car for Reese's
"Sobe" (3 Parts) August 2007
"59 Corvette" (3 Parts) August 2007
"Bonneville Racer" (3 Parts) September 2007


See also

External links

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