Apicella Designs is located in Phoenix, Arizona and specialize in 1947-59 3100 classic Chevy trucks and chassis! They can create a truck package that not only looks great, but performs like a modern day vehicle. Check them out!

 


 

"Apicella Designs got started with a 1950 Chevy 3100. Like most hot rod stories go, we commissioned a shop to build the truck for Sema but it sat and sat so we ultimately pulled the truck back from the shop. I got on the phone and started calling everyone we knew to get this thing done. I had to call the Snap-on guy told him he needs to come over because I needed pretty much every tool- lift included. That’s how I got my first Snap-on toolbox. We completely stripped the truck down, got it painted and put together just enough to be pushed into SEMA in 2014. The paint was only dry for a few hours when we left. It was a pretty shell where you didn’t open the hood…you physically couldn’t open the hood. After Sema we started finishing the truck and more cars as a side gig. When the truck was finished it went to Barrett-Jackson where people fell in love with it. In the beginning of my career, I thought I could do anything. It’s just metal and garbage, and I can put it together. We figured it out that you can be good at a lot or great at a few, we chose the ‘47 to ’55 Chevy pick-up which is the first and second 3100 series pick-ups as our niche market.  We have evolved a lot from working exclusively for a few customers, to building full trucks for new customers, to assembling and selling turnkey chassis. Even with a big shop and multiple guys we only build one or two trucks a year. We do just about everything in house except sew the leather. Some of our coolest projects have come in recently since COVID hit. We have a couple trucks in now that the owners have had their whole lives and was something passed down in their family that they want built. We have gone from being younger kids at 24 asking companies partner with us, telling them I’m going to build hot rods with them replying “bet ya are kid”, to having our trucks competing in the same show with multi-million dollar builds!"

Danielle and Brad 
Shop Owners


 

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  American Legends Hot Rods and Muscle Cars

American Legends Hot Rods and Muscle Cars is located in Phoenix, Arizona and specializes in all aspects of Hot Rods, Muscle Cars, and Classic Cars! They are fully equipped and capable of handling any project from design, fabrication, custom machining or sheetmetal.

Tony Arme - Shop Owner

"I started working with my dad and we built my first car - a Mustang. I ended up selling it and bought another one that I drove throughout high school and then it snowballed from there. I went to a community college to study automotive technology. My instructor connected me with someone who had previously gone through the program and started his own hot rod shop afterwards, so I ended up working there for two years before going to another local shop where I stayed for nine years. I moved again to another place that basically bought and sold cars at Barrett-Jackson, but they were subbing stuff out, so we discussed doing it all inhouse and doing the servicing ourselves which we tried to build into a business. We did this for over four years and it grew well, and then the owner wanted to go one way and us another, so me and a couple guys all left and started American Legends Hotrods. We do our advertising at Barrett-Jackson and do about two cars every year there, plus more at Goodguys and SEMA. We are currently finishing a ‘57 Chevy here that has a Duramax diesel engine in it with 1,400 ft lbs. of torque and around 700hp, we named it the 1957 Hellair. They didn’t come with a Duramax in 1957 so it was a challenge to get it to fit under the hood. Almost every panel on this car has been replaced, at one point it was sitting with only part of the cowl and roof intact. The car was from the Northeast and should have been scrapped, but we fixed it. So far my favorite project was a ‘64 Corvette that we converted into a split window, and it was a wide body so there was carbon fiber everywhere! I would trade my Mustang for that in a heartbeat. We just try to build cool stuff and I just love all the horsepower these cars have!"

Glen Butler - Fabricator/Technician 

"My dad and uncle each had a wrecking yard and I pretty much was raised in them. I tried to go into other jobs but always ended up back working on cars. I used to work for Arizona Street Rods- I built a hot rod for one of my friends and he kept telling me to go work for this guy named Tony who owned a shop called American Legends Hotrods and Musclecars. I finally went over to the shop one day and Tony put me to work!  I have a lot of background in suspensions, components, motors and transmissions - I am 60 years old now so I like to stick to my strengths in the shop. I also do personal builds that are mostly one-offs that I turn around and sell (then usually regret selling and miss it after). For the past 15 years I have worked on fixing other people’s mistakes. A customer brings a car in and tells me they spent a lot of money on it, but can’t drive it, it has no horsepower, it doesn’t stop, stuff like that! I like working on things that people are actually going to drive. They’re going to get in it, they’re going to be happy that the money they paid was well spent and they’re going to drive away with a smile on their face. I get my kicks from watching people take my builds to shows. My builds have won Best in Class at the National Roadster Show, Top 10 in Del Mar and Boyd’s Pro Pick in the same show!"

Charlie Sullens - Partner/Technician

"I started working on family cars when I was 13 years old. I would race in the desert and had to learn how to fix it up myself as we couldn’t afford someone else to do it.  I jumped around different jobs and then decided to go to UTI because I wanted to work for BMW. During school, I got a part time job at a shop that specialized in building Shelby Cobra replicas. The hot rod stuff took over for me and I never ended up working at BMW. I have been doing this professionally for about 20 years now and the restomod stuff and just making the old stuff fun to drive is my favorite."

Gerald Murphy - Fabricator 

"I was really into BMX bikes and wanted to learn how to build my own frames. I learned how to weld, got my permit and got into cars. I was a good welder and a good mechanic, so I went to my local body shop that did restorations in my hometown, got them to tech me how to cut out spot welds and take a sub structure apart and put it back together, body work it and get it ready for paint. The weather just wasn’t good enough year-round in New York so I moved out here so I could spend more time doing this. Now I’m here at American Legends. I’ve always been painting, welding, and building stuff, but I didn’t really get serious with work until about 7 or 8 years ago. I’ve always wanted to Duramax swap a '64 Impala, so my favorite build is the '57 Hell-air. I did a lot of work on the car. It was my first major project that took 2 years working on it in between other projects. My favorite pieces are the little intake panel that goes into the fender, the under hood panels and the exhaust coming out of the back bumper. It really came out killer! My main job is a fabricator, but everyone here does a little bit of everything."


 

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