Trans Am (Discovery)

TransAm

Trans Am (Discovery) – Premieres 2nd October

A car renovation show that follows Trans Am enthusiasts and brothers Scott and Tod Warmack, who specialise in restoring and making custom muscle cars.

During the programme, Scott Warmark runs and co-owns the TransAm Depot, a garage that specialises in restoring classic muscle cars. Where after a client brings in an old car that in need of being brought back to life, Scott and his team work on getting it back to as near to its old factory spec, along with accommodating some modern comforts.

At the same time Tod runs TransAm World, a business where they have purchased the license of the Trans Am name and produce new versions of the old car. There they make high end limited run cars of the Firebird, along with having plans for the company to produce new models under the moniker.

As car renovation programmes go, this has a nice unique twist that makes it stand out from similar shows in the genre. So if you enjoy this type of programme this is worth checking out.

4.1/10

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Car Masters: Rust to Riches (Netflix)

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Car Masters: Rust to Riches (Netflix) – Premieres 14th September

A car renovation show where owner of the Gotham Garage, Mark Towle, has a novel approach to his business compared to similar shows. As he sets out to initially buy a cheap beaten up vehicle, and when it’s restored, trade it for a more valuable beaten down vehicle where he repeats the process until the value for the final build is in the six figure area. And when that’s achieved, starts the process again at the beginning.

In each episode it focuses on one stage of the restore and trade process, where it starts with the vehicle arriving at the garage. Leaving the employees question whether it’s doable. Then after the plan is shown, the team begin work in the usual car restoration style.

As this is going on Mike then gets a small job coming into the garage to help pay the bills, which ends up providing more problems than the big job they are working on. Then when both jobs are finished, the small job returns to it’s owner, and the big job is taken to the owner of the next restoration job where the vehicles are swapped.

For what it is, the show does offer something slightly different to the norm, which does help this to be more watchable than other similar shows. All-in-all, it’s something you’d happily watch if nowt else is on.

4.0/10

Battle Tested (Discovery)

BattleTested

Battle Tested (Discovery) – Premieres 7th September – Pilot

A show where Mike Glover and Kurt Hohan of Fieldcraft Survival, a company that test products for their suitability in military and consumer markets, take a product that being pitched for survival use, and puts it through it’s paces.

After receiving the product the pair then create situations where it could be used, then recreate the situations in their test field. During the tests the pair highlight the pros and cons of the item, and note what could be changed to improve its performance.

Then when all the tests are completed Kurt and Mike contact the manufacturer with their findings, and give there recommendations on any improvements. Where after, the show gives an update with the manufacturer a couple of months later as they go through the changes that were made, and reveal if they are close to getting a order/contract for the product.

While this is more interesting than the recent History Channel pilots such as Fistful Of Steel, this still doesn’t have anything going on that makes you want to watch. All-in-all it’s one to miss.

2.3/10

Mad Dog Made (Discovery)

MadDogMade

Mad Dog Made (Discovery) – Premieres 3rd August

A show that follows Kevin “Mad Dog” McClung, an engineer and weapon manufacture who creates bespoke items for clients ranging from US first responder groups through to the military.

In the show Mad Dog along with his team of apprentices, Jacob and his daughter Morgan, receive a request from a client to make a custom tool to help with their daily job. They then meet up with the client to see what they are currently using, and the parameters they need to produce the new item within.

After getting the information they need, Mad Dog comes up with a prototype, and then they knock up a working version it is then put through it’s paces. After they are happy with what they’ve created, the team meet up again with the client. Where they give recommendations, or highlight some of the limitations that the team may have overlooked. Mad Dog then heads off back to the shop to make the amendments to the tool, before meeting the client for a one last time where he reveals the final version.

For what it is, the show doesn’t really have anything going on that make you want to keep watching. Though if you stumbled across it channel hopping, it has enough about it to be an ok way to burn 45 minutes.

3.5/10

Impossible Engineering: Extreme Railroads (Science Channel)

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Impossible Engineering: Extreme Railroads (Science Channel) – Premieres 17th May

A science programme that looks at various railways, and the unique design solutions needed for them to be completed in the harsh environments they go through.

In the episode it looks at five different railways from around the world. Where it shows the geographical or climate based problems that faced the designers in its construction.

From there it shows the solution the designers came up with, and how it was implemented. And along with interviews from those that either worked on the building, or upkeep of the track, it follows a train in operation.

The show is like a mix between Impossible Engineering and something like Rocky Mountain Railroad. Though with some of the railways shown on this being already covered in other programmes, it does come across as repetitive.

1.7/10

Engineering Catastrophes (Science Channel)

EngineeringCatastrophes

Engineering Catastrophes (Science Channel) – Premieres 5th April

A show that is the like the reverse of Impossible Engineering. Where it shows four building projects that have either yet to be completed due to planning errors, or have design flaws discovered after construction that need to be fixed.

In the programme the two main structures featured are where the host visits the place, and is taken around the location by the people that work there. While being shown around, the engineering problem is explained. Where the people that look after the structure talk about the conditions that could cause fatalities, and why the decision to was taken in the building phase to incorporate it. Then after being shown around, the presenter reveals the plans being put into action to rectify the problems.

The other two segments go along the same lines, but are presented by local reporters in a more investigative guise. Where they try to get answers from the structures owners about the problems that are effecting the buildings. Only to find that they’re not too willing to talk to a person with a video camera strapped to their shoulder.

For a science/engineering show it does exactly what you’d expect, and while it’s not the greatest of programmes it is easy enough background viewing.

2.8/10

Velocity Dispatch (Velocity)

VelocityDispatch

Velocity Dispatch (Velocity) – Premieres 20th April

A short 20 minute show where a garage that creates custom vehicles takes on a low budget challenge to complete.

In the programme the people at the garage go through what they are trying to create, explain their plan and the goal they are trying to achieve. Then through the magic of montages go about creating their vehicle.

During the show the members explain the certain processes they are using along with the various components being used, and what exactly they are doing to them. Then after the build section is completed they go about trying to achieve the target they set out to achieve.

For a self filmed, low budget bit of programming it’s surprisingly watchable. Though not something you’d ever go out of your way to watch, the whole cheapness of the thing gives it a quirky charm.

3.7/10