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All Episodes Talk: In the Garage

A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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I'm glad there's finally an American Chopper forum here, but now I hope we can get some conversation started.  Looks like next week is the last episode of the season already!

This show has been on the air in several different formats over the years, but it hasn't been on for quite awhile.  I was glad to see it back, with everyone involved.  Vinnie is kind of conspicuous in his absence, but whatever.  Junior and Senior are getting along, and Mikey seems to have accepted his role to provide laughs.

When the show was in its "Senior vs Junior" phase, it seemed like there was always a greater appreciation for Junior's designs.  Senior has always been more of a management sort than a creative type.  It has struck me over this season that I have actually liked OCC's bikes, almost as much as Paul Jr's.  Although I'm not sure I liked last night's Spartan bike that well.  Junior's trike sounded incredible.

But OCC seems to be better run, as a business, what with the way they draw up some concept art they can show the client.  With Paul Jr. Designs, you have to just take what he gives you because he likes to do everything on the fly.

I'd be curious to know what really happened to that Yankee bike.  Maybe it fell into the hands of some Red Sox fan.  That episode was one of the most memorable of the originals, with the Teutel grandmother being such a big Yankee fan, and insisting on calling Jorge Posada "George" Posada.

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9 hours ago, Maharincess said:

Is this back on?  

Yes it is, Discovery Channel on Mondays.  The current season ends this coming Monday, July 16 2018 though.  

So this is a 10 episode season apparently.  Monday's episode is labeled #9, but there was also an episode reintroducing the series, a sort of "episode zero".  So I'd call it 10 episodes.

I have no idea what kind of ratings it's been getting, but hopefully there will be another season.

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So the final episode of the season aired last night.  There were three bikes that they unveiled.  It's always struck me as kind of odd that these bikes all got public "unveilings".  How many people make products that all get publicly unveiled?  It's all part of the show, I guess.

The military bike that Orange County Choppers made didn't really impress me, although I liked the frame and the basic shape.

Paul Jr. Design's country bike for Clay Walker was quite an eye popper though, with all that black, leather, copper, and gold foil. 

The Yankee bike we've seen before (although they changed the gas tank), but it still got unveiled. 

It's kind of odd to see this show with everyone getting along.  It was originally built around the fiery relationship between Senior and Junior.  When the baseball guy suggested another bike build, Senior wisely passed it on to Junior.  I got the impression the guy was asking for another father/son build.  I can see why they want to keep that to a minimum.

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I work for a company that does a lot of custom stuff, and I can't imagine telling our customers that they don't get a choice on their design - they'd get what the spirit that moves me says they get.  Our stuff is very costly like theirs is, and we require sign-offs by customers for designs.  Even when their design is ugly, we try to discourage them gently, but they're forking the money out.  My husband always jokes "I envision a web theme..."

I also never understood why companies that had zero to do with motorcycles would dump tens of thousands of dollars on a custom chopper "for their business".  Now Geico sells motorcycle insurance, so I get that.  Same with companies that make tools, or parts that can be used on bikes.  But some companies (My Pillow, Carolina Carports, etc) just left me scratching my head.

I've always been more on Sr's side.  And to me, it seemed that the tension didn't hit an all-time high until Jr met his wife.  I'm glad they're still together and happy, but something there was off, at least initially.  I can somewhat understand Sr's decision to skip their wedding, although I wouldn't have handled it that way if I were in that boat.  I would have showed up, stayed out of sight, then privately met with Jr and wished him well, and if it was wanted, pose for family photos.  Then I'd go home and skip the reception.  Too many chances for drama, and he would have seen the important part anyway.  But that's just me.  No one ever accused Sr of making the best decisions.  There was no shortage of people making drama for them, sadly.  The one show they did were Jr and Sr did some sort of live build and then there was voting (I can't remember exactly how it went), Jr of course won, and Sr came up to congratulate him, and Jr's mom (Sr's ex) actually shoved him away with a nasty look on her face, and said something I couldn't make out.  We re-wound it several times to be sure.

Eons ago, when the show was at a fever pitch and the old crew was still around, we went to a bike show about 2 hours from us just to meet Jr, Sr, Vinnie, Cody, Mikey, and Campo (that tells you how long ago it was - Cody was still a teen).  We stood in line for hours.  Never did get to meet Jr and Sr - they left before we got to them.  But the rest were really nice.  It's a shame they can't get that vibe back.

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On 7/18/2018 at 11:17 AM, funky-rat said:

I also never understood why companies that had zero to do with motorcycles would dump tens of thousands of dollars on a custom chopper "for their business".

Back when the show was a big deal, I'm sure companies saw it as being good advertising.  They got their company on the show, got to explain what they do, got their logo flashed around a lot, and got to pose with the Teutuls for the unveil.  Now days there must be less incentive, but I suppose the same idea applies, just on a smaller scale.  

I do remember seeing that incident at the build off that you talked about, where Junior's mom stepped in to stop Senior from congratulating him on the win.  That always puzzled me, what the heck was that all about?

On 7/18/2018 at 11:38 PM, Maharincess said:

Does anyone know whatever happened to Cody? 

According to this article, which is just a few months old, he's left the bike building world, and works at a utility company.

http://speedsociety.com/what-is-american-chopper-builder-cody-connelly-doing-now/

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5 hours ago, rmontro said:

Back when the show was a big deal, I'm sure companies saw it as being good advertising.  They got their company on the show, got to explain what they do, got their logo flashed around a lot, and got to pose with the Teutuls for the unveil.  Now days there must be less incentive, but I suppose the same idea applies, just on a smaller scale.  

I do remember seeing that incident at the build off that you talked about, where Junior's mom stepped in to stop Senior from congratulating him on the win.  That always puzzled me, what the heck was that all about?

According to this article, which is just a few months old, he's left the bike building world, and works at a utility company.

To each their own, I guess.  I would never see spending tens of thousands on a custom bike, with the exception of maybe if they do a lot of trade shows, and want to attract people to their booth.  Then I can see it, but still wonder if the cost vs. benefit is worth it.  But like I said, that's just me.

As for Sr's ex, I can only surmise, as I don't know the woman.  The couple of times I saw her on the show, she always seemed a bit bitter.  I'm pretty sure she was with Sr in the drunk/doped out phase, and I believe they had split before the show caught on, so perhaps she was ticked she didn't get to take part in that success.  She could be ticked because both Mikey and Jr had drug/alcohol issues, and she blamed Sr (it does run in families, as does mental illness, which Sr and Mikey have spoken out about).  The build-off was after Jr and Sr split, and she could have felt Sr was trying to get glory for himself (although he seemed genuine to me).  And she could be another reason that Sr skipped Jr's wedding.  He kept stressing he didn't want drama on Jr's day.  If she's upset for some of those reasons, that's fine, but it irritates me when a parent tries to turn kids against the other parent.  It rarely turns out well.

And as for Cody, that whole situation was weird.  His mom supposedly asks Sr in a grocery store if he'll work with him because he needs direction.  He does, and gets the kid on TV, gets him money, pays for him go to school, etc.  And then it goes weirdly sideways, with Cody badmouthing people, suing because he was promised a bike, etc.  I think he got too much too quickly, and was too young to handle it.  If he's happy outside of the bike world, more power to him.  Vinnie never seemed to really enjoy the spotlight.  When we met him, he was super nice, but seemed almost a bit shy, and a bit bewildered that people stood in line for hours on end to meet him.  Mikey was the nicest of them all.  He got in the face of a security guard who was being really rude to me, and almost knocked me over.  He asked me if I was OK, and cracked some jokes with me.  Campo was also a sweetie - he was gone from the show fairly early.  He was sitting in the OCC merch booth, which was in another part of the fairgrounds.  Rick, who used to be on the show, lives not too terribly far from me, and he must be on the next season, because it was on the news that they were filming for OCC at his place.

I checked my photos - they're from 2004.  Doesn't seem like it was that long ago.  I've attached 2.

4079633638_f67ce79c84_z.jpg

4079635864_4d3d6cc7aa_z.jpg

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16 hours ago, funky-rat said:

Rick, who used to be on the show, lives not too terribly far from me, and he must be on the next season, because it was on the news that they were filming for OCC at his place.

Thanks for the photos and the info.  I guess there will be another season then, from what you're saying.  It will be good to see Rick again, although I do miss Vinnie.

I think most of us have heard about how Cody didn't get the bike he was promised.  I mean, they did say they were going to give him the bike, it was on TV.  Too bad that ended badly, I didn't know that was how Cody got his start there.  

Not sure if anyone remembers this, but three was a short lived version of American Chopper on CMT after the Junior vs Senior show folded.  It was only about OCC, it didn't Junior on it at all, it was all about Senior's shop.  I don't remember much about it, but it only lasted like eight episodes.

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7 hours ago, rmontro said:

Thanks for the photos and the info.  I guess there will be another season then, from what you're saying.  It will be good to see Rick again, although I do miss Vinnie.

I think most of us have heard about how Cody didn't get the bike he was promised.  I mean, they did say they were going to give him the bike, it was on TV.  Too bad that ended badly, I didn't know that was how Cody got his start there.  

Not sure if anyone remembers this, but three was a short lived version of American Chopper on CMT after the Junior vs Senior show folded.  It was only about OCC, it didn't Junior on it at all, it was all about Senior's shop.  I don't remember much about it, but it only lasted like eight episodes.

I don't recall the re-boot, but CMT had been removed from our cable lineup for a few months, due to some fight with suppliers.  It eventually came back, so I could have missed it.

I will have to go back to a few really old eps to remember exactly what transpired, but Cody's mom supposedly bumped into Sr at the grocery store,  I think, and said that she felt he need a mentor or something similar, and asked if he could give Cody some odd jobs.  It's been a while.  As for the bike he was given, we only know what we saw on TV.  I always took the situation to mean that he would get the bike eventually.  All of the bikes made on the show appear at their facilities on display, and many go on "tour" when they go out to do personal appearances.  So I assumed that the bike would come to him eventually when they were done displaying it, and rotated something newer in.  I looked in to his lawsuit, and there wasn't a lot out there with specifics, but he did sue for the bike.  He also claimed he wasn't paid for a lot of his time on the show, but it was later determined that he was indeed paid for 31 of the 32 eps he appeared in.  He also said OCC was using his image on things, but because he did work there at one time, I believe they're allowed to do that.  They might have to pay him for licensing, but I'm not sure on that.  Last complaint was about not being paid for personal appearances, but if the show pays his airfare, food, lodging, etc, I'm not sure if they have to compensate him for the appearances or not.  Again, another iffy area that varies from state to state, and depending on the situation.  Adding in the TV show there just makes it more complicated, because it could be argued if the appearances were filmed for the show, then does OCC pay him, or the tv production company.  All gray areas.

Something I came across when looking in to that lawsuit Cody filed - a photo of Paul Sr right after he got out of school and joined the Merchant Marines.  He can't deny Jr for sure.  It's eerie.

Clipboard02.jpg

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Holy cats, I thought that was a picture of Junior.  Now that I know, I can see some Senior there in the nose and mouth.  But you're right, the resemblance is uncanny.

I don't know what happened with CMT, but it went off my cable awhile  back, and I'm still not getting it.

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I've only watched a couple of episodes but will catch up.  I'm glad it's back on Discovery, TLC ruined the show by turning it from a show about building custom bikes to reality TV drama.  From what I've read, Paul Sr. has been in bankruptcy and has multiple lawsuits pending, so he probably needed the show to try and get solvent again.  Vinnie did a few YouTube videos where he explains what he and Cody have been up to.  Basically he got out of the custom bike game and runs a car repair garage now.  He stays in touch with Jr. and does service on his cars and trucks, but doesn't want to do the show and doesn't want anything to do with Sr.  He says he is happy every day he goes to work now.  Cody has been working for a local power company.

Edited by Dobian.
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On 7/30/2018 at 2:23 PM, Dobian said:

I've only watched a couple of episodes but will catch up.  I'm glad it's back on Discovery, TLC ruined the show by turning it from a show about building custom bikes to reality TV drama.  

There wasn't much drama this season, at least not in the form of people arguing.  Which is surprisingly refreshing, considering that was a major factor in why Discovery gave the show to the Teutels in the first place.  But it's not detailed bike building like in the old days either.  Both shops are usually running a bike build every week, so they split the time up between the two.  

Vinnie had the misfortune of being treated like a son by Senior when he worked there.  He got all the guff but none of the benefits.  I suppose that was true of Cody too, to a lesser extent.  Now there is Senior's nephew Nick working there as janitor, he seems to absorb a lot of the abuse that Senior seems obligated to dish out.

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