Monster Garage

Monster Garage

Overview
Monster Garage is a television show for the Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel is an American satellite and cable specialty channel , founded by John Hendricks and distributed by Discovery Communications. It is a publicly traded company run by CEO David Zaslav...

 hosted by Jesse G. James
Jesse G. James
Jesse Gregory James is an American television personality and CEO of West Coast Choppers, a manufacturer of custom-made motorcycles. James was the host of the reality TV shows Jesse James is a Dead Man on Spike TV and Monster Garage, on the Discovery Channel, and the focus of the documentary...

. Each episode is an hour in length and was conceived and produced (along with Jesse) by Thom Beers
Thom Beers
Thom Beers is an American television producer and narrator/ voice over artist. Beers, a former producer and executive with Turner Broadcasting and Paramount Syndicated Television, has produced over 40 television series since the mid 1990s, most under the banner of his own production company formed...

.

The show aired the series finale
Series finale
A series finale refers to the last installment of a series with a narrative presented through mediums such as television, film and literature. In many Commonwealth countries, the term final episode is commonly used in regards to a television series...

 on June 12, 2006. Jesse G. James
Jesse G. James
Jesse Gregory James is an American television personality and CEO of West Coast Choppers, a manufacturer of custom-made motorcycles. James was the host of the reality TV shows Jesse James is a Dead Man on Spike TV and Monster Garage, on the Discovery Channel, and the focus of the documentary...

, the host of the show, did not participate.

A team of five people with mechanical, fabricating, or modifying expertise is assembled to modify a vehicle into a "monster machine." On the show this generally meant making one vehicle that could transform into another such as a PT Cruiser which could change into a Wood Chipper, or a school bus which changed into a pontoon boat.
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Encyclopedia
Monster Garage is a television show for the Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel is an American satellite and cable specialty channel , founded by John Hendricks and distributed by Discovery Communications. It is a publicly traded company run by CEO David Zaslav...

 hosted by Jesse G. James
Jesse G. James
Jesse Gregory James is an American television personality and CEO of West Coast Choppers, a manufacturer of custom-made motorcycles. James was the host of the reality TV shows Jesse James is a Dead Man on Spike TV and Monster Garage, on the Discovery Channel, and the focus of the documentary...

. Each episode is an hour in length and was conceived and produced (along with Jesse) by Thom Beers
Thom Beers
Thom Beers is an American television producer and narrator/ voice over artist. Beers, a former producer and executive with Turner Broadcasting and Paramount Syndicated Television, has produced over 40 television series since the mid 1990s, most under the banner of his own production company formed...

.

The show aired the series finale
Series finale
A series finale refers to the last installment of a series with a narrative presented through mediums such as television, film and literature. In many Commonwealth countries, the term final episode is commonly used in regards to a television series...

 on June 12, 2006. Jesse G. James
Jesse G. James
Jesse Gregory James is an American television personality and CEO of West Coast Choppers, a manufacturer of custom-made motorcycles. James was the host of the reality TV shows Jesse James is a Dead Man on Spike TV and Monster Garage, on the Discovery Channel, and the focus of the documentary...

, the host of the show, did not participate.

Premise of the show


A team of five people with mechanical, fabricating, or modifying expertise is assembled to modify a vehicle into a "monster machine." On the show this generally meant making one vehicle that could transform into another such as a PT Cruiser which could change into a Wood Chipper, or a school bus which changed into a pontoon boat. Occasionally vehicles were modified so as to hide non-vehicular functions, such as a police car which doubled as a donut shop, or a Toyota Tundra which was modified so as to allow it to discharge a motorcycle at high speeds. Build teams which successfully completed their assignment were rewarded with expensive tool kits.

Rules


According to the show, the rules are as follows:
  1. When complete, the monster must appear to be stock.
  2. The team has $3000 (later raised to $5000) for parts.
  3. The team has seven days to complete the monster.
    • The first day is for designing
    • the next five are for building
    • and the seventh day is for the test of the monster.


In practice, as the series progressed, some liberties were taken with the first two rules, at times becoming punchlines. In one episode, when a Chevrolet El Camino
Chevrolet El Camino
The Chevrolet El Camino is a coupe utility vehicle produced by the Chevrolet division of General Motors for the 1959–1960 model years in response to the success of its rival, Ford Ranchero. Production resumed for the 1964–1977 model years based on the Chevelle platform, and continued for the...

 was turned into a Figure 8 race car, James discarded plans for a spoiler on the vehicle, sarcastically citing the first rule.

Starting with season 4, the winning team also donated a toolkit to a high school of their choice.

Host


Host Jesse G. James
Jesse G. James
Jesse Gregory James is an American television personality and CEO of West Coast Choppers, a manufacturer of custom-made motorcycles. James was the host of the reality TV shows Jesse James is a Dead Man on Spike TV and Monster Garage, on the Discovery Channel, and the focus of the documentary...

 claims to be the great-great-grandson of the cousin of the legendary wild west outlaw
Outlaw
In historical legal systems, an outlaw is declared as outside the protection of the law. In pre-modern societies, this takes the burden of active prosecution of a criminal from the authorities. Instead, the criminal is withdrawn all legal protection, so that anyone is legally empowered to persecute...

, Jesse James. Jesse G. James has both mechanical and metal fabricating expertise and is the founder, owner and head bike builder for his custom chopper
Chopper (motorcycle)
A chopper is a type of motorcycle that was either modified from an original motorcycle design or built from scratch to have a hand-crafted appearance. The main features of a chopper that make it stand out are its longer frame design accompanied by a stretch front end...

 shop, West Coast Choppers
West Coast Choppers
West Coast Choppers is a lifestyle brand that began selling screen-printed t-shirts and stickers with the company's Iron cross/Maltese cross logo while founder and "master marketer" Jesse G. James was finishing high school, packaging the accoutrements of the chopper lifestyle long before any...

. Jesse says he likes monsters that go fast and do something. He prefers hard working build crew members. His favorite monster vehicles to date are the Ford
Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company is an American multinational automaker based in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. The automaker was founded by Henry Ford and incorporated on June 16, 1903. In addition to the Ford and Lincoln brands, Ford also owns a small stake in Mazda in Japan and Aston Martin in the UK...

 Ambulance
Ambulance
An ambulance is a vehicle for transportation of sick or injured people to, from or between places of treatment for an illness or injury, and in some instances will also provide out of hospital medical care to the patient...

 Wheel-stander and the Chevrolet Blazer
Chevrolet K5 Blazer
See also Chevrolet Blazer The K5 Blazer was the smallest full size SUV version of the General Motors C/K Trucks family. Introduced to the Chevrolet line in 1969, the full-size Blazer was replaced in 1995 by the Chevrolet Tahoe. In 1970, GMC introduced its own model of the truck, called the Jimmy,...

 Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak
Pikes Peak is a mountain in the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains, west of Colorado Springs, Colorado, in El Paso County in the United States of America....

 hill climber. One of Jesse's ambitions throughout the run of the show was to build a monster that will top 200 mph, which he was unsuccessful at achieving. Announcing for this show was done by Brett "The Big Schwag" Wagner who is the current host of the Speed Channel
SPEED Channel
Speed , is a cable and satellite television network broadcast to various parts of North America, but primarily the United States...

 show Pass Time. He was very memorable for frequently shouting out "You gotta be kidding me!" during the tests of the "monster" vehicles and signing off every episode saying: "The next Monster Garage challenge is JUST... AROUND... THE BEND!".

Failed Monsters


With rules as strict as they are in the Monster Garage, there is a 1 in 10 monster build failure rate. When a team fails to complete a vehicle in time, it is destroyed by host Jesse James.

Failed Monsters and their Ultimate Demise
  • Cadillac Hearse
    Hearse
    A hearse is a funerary vehicle used to carry a coffin from a church or funeral home to a cemetery. In the funeral trade, hearses are often called funeral coaches.-History:...

    /Car Crusher "Grim Ripper" — was the first failure on Monster Garage. The build team spent more time goofing off than building the car. In one scene, the original Batmobile
    Batmobile
    The Batmobile is the automobile of DC Comics superhero Batman. The car has evolved along with the character from comic books to television and films. Kept in the Batcave, which it accesses through a hidden entrance, the Batmobile is a gadget-laden vehicle used by Batman in his crime-fighting...

     appeared at the shop, and Jesse quipped "tryin' to weld" when asked what he was doing. The non-functional Car Crusher was then sent to Terminal Island
    Terminal Island
    Terminal Island is an island located in Los Angeles County, California between Los Angeles Harbor and Long Beach Harbor. Originally a mudflat known to the Spanish as Isla Raza de Buena Gente, and later called Rattlesnake Island, it has officially been Terminal Island since 1918...

     to meet its fate in a scrapper. At the suggestion of the scrap machine's owner, the Hearse came to an explosive end with a propane tank in the back. In Grim Ripper II, the team spoofed the demise of their first project by having the car in which they arrived at Terminal Island
    Terminal Island
    Terminal Island is an island located in Los Angeles County, California between Los Angeles Harbor and Long Beach Harbor. Originally a mudflat known to the Spanish as Isla Raza de Buena Gente, and later called Rattlesnake Island, it has officially been Terminal Island since 1918...

     meet the same fate as the first hearse.
  • Scion xA
    Scion xA
    Scion xA is a five-door hatchback subcompact marketed in the US from 2004-2006 — as an export model of the Japanese Domestic Market Toyota ist. Based on the first generation Toyota Vitz hatchback, the xA shared a platform with the Toyota Platz sedan....

    /Rock'em, Sock'em Scions — In this two-episode special, Jesse handpicked a team of the best Monster Garage participants at the time, while the producers picked a "mis-fit" team of quirky and somewhat anti-social participants to build Rock'em Sock'em Robots out of two new Scions. The winning team would win a "special edition" set of Mac tools
    Mac Tools
    Mac Tools is a professional tool company located in Westerville, Ohio, USA. The Mac Tools line consists of over 8000 professional tools including screwdrivers, ratchets, wrenches, and assorted air tools. Mac Tools also makes its own tool boxes located in its manufacturing plant in Georgetown, Ohio...

     while the other team would see their creation turned into scrap. Jesse's handpicked team, dubbed the Red Rockers, secured the Scion xB
    Scion xB
    The Scion xB is a vehicle made by Toyota for the United States market and sold under their youth-oriented Scion brand. It is a box-shaped, 5-door compact hatchback.-First generation :...

    , while the producer-selected Blue Bombers received the xA. In the challenge, the Bombers' xA suffered transmission issues, meaning the Rockers won by default. Some members of the Bombers stayed to see their failed monster off, only to find out that they would be receiving tool sets as well.
  • De Lorean DMC-12
    De Lorean DMC-12
    The DeLorean DMC-12 is a sports car originally manufactured in Dunmurry, a suburb west of Belfast, Northern Ireland by John DeLorean's DeLorean Motor Company for the American market in 1981-82. Most commonly known as the DeLorean, it was the only model produced by the company which would go into...

     Hovercraft
    Hovercraft
    A hovercraft is a craft capable of traveling over surfaces while supported by a cushion of slow moving, high-pressure air which is ejected against the surface below and contained within a "skirt." Although supported by air, a hovercraft is not considered an aircraft.Hovercraft are used throughout...

     — In an early attempt to shave time off the build, the team removed the outer bodywork of a De Lorean and put it on a donor personal hovercraft. Quite angry about this decision (even though he himself declared early on that he didn't like the project), Jesse fired one of the team members after a snide comment. Working again with a "new" De Lorean donor, the team tried unsuccessfully to make the monster hover but ultimately ran out of time. The car was eventually towed to a naval base where a tank tracked vehicle crushed the unfinished vehicle.
  • Mazda
    Mazda
    is a Japanese automotive manufacturer based in Fuchū, Aki District, Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan.In 2007, Mazda produced almost 1.3 million vehicles for global sales...

     Miata Jetski — Some fans have noted that the reason why this build failed was the engine might have contributed to the air intake being flooded due to the heavy weight in the nose area. Nevertheless, three members of the build team opted to send the Miata to the scrapheap with a dynamite explosion.
  • Dirt Track Camaro — For the second time in MG history, this build had an all-girl build team (the first was the Black Widow Demolition Derby Car, which was heavily gutted moments before a demolition derby
    Demolition derby
    Demolition derby is a motorsport usually presented at county fairs and festivals. While rules vary from event to event, the typical demolition derby event consists of five or more drivers competing by deliberately ramming their vehicles into one another...

    ). However, a plague of miscommunication and personal differences sent this Camaro to a steel smelter and eventual recycling into rebar.
  • Peel Trident
    Peel Trident
    The Peel Trident was the second three-wheeled microcar made by the Peel Engineering Company on the Isle of Man. It was manufactured in 1965 and 1966. The Trident featured a clear bubble top and either two seats or one seat with a detachable shopping basket. It has been described as "a terrestrial...

     Micro Car — With a team composed of mostly dwarves
    Dwarfism
    Dwarfism is short stature resulting from a medical condition. It is sometimes defined as an adult height of less than 4 feet 10 inches  , although this definition is problematic because short stature in itself is not a disorder....

    , the team attempted to put a Hayabusa
    Suzuki GSX1300R
    The Suzuki Hayabusa is a sport bike motorcycle made by Suzuki since 1999. It immediately won acclaim as the world's fastest production motorcycle, with a top speed of ....

     engine into a tiny Peel Car. Some fans felt that the team was compromised due to their small stature, but Jesse coldly stated that he gave no team any exceptions; they were all equal. Other fans feel the project was simply too ambitious for builders of any size. After they failed, Jesse, sporting some of his personal gun collection, took out the Peel with a .50 calibre sniper rifle.
  • Anglia
    Ford Anglia
    The 1949 model, code E494A, was a makeover of the previous model with a rather more 1940s style front-end, including the sloped, twin-lobed radiator grille. Again it was a very spartan vehicle and in 1948 was Britain's lowest priced four wheel car....

     Nitro Dragster — The team did not give themselves enough time to fire up the engine. The engine ended up not firing due to timing issues, and Jesse brought it to a construction site where a crane dropped a large metal box on it.

Succeeded monsters destroyed in Day 7

  • Mazda RX-7
    Mazda RX-7
    Series 1 is commonly referred to as the "SA22C" from the first alphanumerics of the vehicle identification number. This series of RX-7 had exposed steel bumpers and a high-mounted indentation-located license plate, called by Werner Buhrer of Road & Track magazine a "Baroque depression."In 1980...

    /Doom Buggy — Unsatisfied with how the Sandrail performed, Jesse destroyed it with a Dillon Minigun
    Minigun
    The Minigun is a 7.62 mm, multi-barrel heavy machine gun with a high rate of fire , employing Gatling-style rotating barrels with an external power source...

    .
  • 1970 Cadillac Coupe DeVille/Demolition-Derby Car - In day 7, Cindy Regimbald lost the demolition derby, leaving the car smashed from the derby.
  • 1970 Oval Racer/RC
    Remote control
    A remote control is a component of an electronics device, most commonly a television set, used for operating the television device wirelessly from a short line-of-sight distance.The remote control is usually contracted to remote...

     Car - During the challenge, after Jesse lapped the car about 5 times, he rammed his car into the rear fender of it and sent it smashing into wall of the short track. The monster was totalled, and it was stored outside the Monster Garage, later to be cannibalized in future episodes.
  • 1969-1970 Classic Farm Tractor/Crop Circler - The vehicle was built successfully, but Jesse decided the project was uninteresting, so he burnt it in a desert with a flamethrower
    Flamethrower
    A flamethrower is a mechanical device designed to project a long controllable stream of fire.Some flamethrowers project a stream of ignited flammable liquid; some project a long gas flame. Most military flamethrowers use liquids, but commercial flamethrowers tend to use high-pressure propane and...

    .

UK version


A UK version of the show was aired in 2004 by Channel 4. The team always included a Hell's Angel known as "Cookie". There was a budget of £3,000. Only 3 days were used for the build. Cars often looked radically different from the production models. Challenges included; converting a Toyota into a lawnmower, a Lotus into a hovercraft, and an ice cream van into a riot truck. In one episode, the team sold the internal fittings of the car that was to be transformed (A Rolls Royce) to raise funds to convert it into a muck spreader.

The UK series lasted only 8 episodes.

Videos


MBI published Monster Garage videos, detailing the Ford Mustang lawn mower, Ford Explorer garbage truck, limousine firetruck, and the Volkswagen Beetle swamp boat.

Monster Garage sale


The 2008 Barrett-Jackson
Barrett-Jackson
Established in 1971 and headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction provides products and services to classic and collector car owners, collectors and automotive enthusiasts...

 Scottsdale auction included 42 of the surviving project vehicles.

Video games


Invictus Games Ltd. developed a PC video game, based on the series. An Xbox remake was made by Impulse Games in 2004. Both games were published by Activision Value
Activision Value
Activision Value Publishing, Inc. is an American computer and video game company, a merger of Activision, Expert Software and Head Games Publishing....

.

Books


Inside Monster Garage, a book about the TV series, was published by Meridith Books.

MBI Publishing Company has published Monster Garage instruction books under the Motorbooks brand, including:
  • Monster Garage: How to Custom Paint Damn Near Anything
  • Monster Garage: How to Customize Damn Near Anything
  • Monster Garage: How to Fabricate Damn Near Anything
  • Monster Garage: How to Weld Damn Near Anything


Monster Garage: How to Custom Paint Damn Near Anything, Monster Garage: How to Customize Damn Near Anything, Monster Garage: How to Weld Damn Near Anything are also sold together as Monster Garage Gift Set and
The Big Box of Monster Garage (box set).

External links