Rods N Wheels
Mondays on Discovery Channel
Larry Jewett - January 23, 2014 04:40 PM
Southern California is a hotbed for the car culture. You simply don’t bring a substandard ride to a car show and that’s what keeps local builders pushing the envelope to produce the best cars for customers.
In the heart of it all, in Simi Valley, is Da Rod Shop “Your Hot Rod, Street Rod and Muscle Car Service Center”. It’s a successful business that is about to become the centerpiece of a new television program.
The show, called Rods N Wheels, debuts on Discovery Channel January 27.
Shop owners Billy Derian and Steve Reck are excited about the show. “We watch all the shows,” said Derian, “and we said our shop is more fun. I have a buddy who shot a video and when it was all done, we had a TV show.”
The show is designed to be a true “what you see is what you get” with the scenarios to be as close as possible to what you would see if there were no TV cameras around. The characters are real. Billy is the salesman who overpromises and expects Steve and the team to produce. Steve and his capable staff always seem to pull through, even if the job isn’t easy.
“All our guys are dedicated,” Steve Reck added. “They take our lead and get the job done.”
There are trials like time and the availability of parts. For now, aftermarket companies aren’t lining up to throw parts at the show. The parts come right out of the customer’s budgets and, if necessary, the company coffers. Reck cited parts suppliers who say they can deliver and don’t and subcontractors who take longer or cost more as constant headaches that will no doubt appear in the TV shows.
Both Derian and Reck have their sons working alongside them and the next generation brings its own character and storyline to the show. Anyone who has worked with relatives will know it changes the dynamic, but the fathers are committed to being fathers first. “There are businesses where the fathers bring them in for a while and then send them off without finishing the job. We’re teaching our boys to be men. It’s natural that there are going to be disagreements, even if the TV cameras weren’t there. You’ll always see us make up, but that’s what we do. That’s what real men do and strength our family and friendships.”
The shop has the capability of having as many as 10 cars under roof and has been experiencing steady business, so the TV show is not a publicity stunt. The two men dreamed of owning their own garage because they have been lifelong car fanatics. Steve has a ’56 Fairlane that was given to him by his grandmother when he was 14 and a 1973 van that he bought in high school. Billy tools around in a Dodge Durango, but his recent cars have included a tubbed ’62 Plymouth Fury, a ’59 Cadillac and a recently sold ’67 Corvette.
The show holds the promise of emphasizing the good in the aspects that are utilized to create cars to be enjoyed. It’s a newcomer that is poised to make a name for itself in a place where there are a lot of names. They’ve already done that with their business and are looking to make a similar move in the world of reality TV.
Here's a recap of past shows.